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SFX

Ability Sets may include one or more "Special Effects", abbreviated as SFX. Unlike Ability traits, SFX allow a character to expand their capabilities beyond what is normally allowed, offer options to manipualte dice pools to a character's advantage, or might even modify or bend the normal rules of the game in some way. They offer a powerful tool to express interesting and distinct character concepts.

A non-comprehensive set of example SFX are included in this document but it should be noted that players and GM's are strongly encouraged to come up with interesting SFX of their own.

Note that some players and GM's might like to personalize a character by renaming some or all of their SFX to better represent the character they are applied to, while other players and GM's prefer consistency and would rather keep the "official" name of such standard SFX on all characters that have them. This content tends to take the first stance, and thus some of the sample characters might have something like "SFX: Calming" or "SFX: Oh My Stars and Garters" presented with the same game mechanics as "SFX: Regulator"; they are in fact the same ability (i.e. have the same game mechanic) and the various labels applied to that ability should be considered merely descriptive.

Standard SFX

Players are encouraged to work with the GM to define signature SFX tailored to their characters, but a collection of standard SFX are provided below to choose from.

SFX: Area Attack: When taking an attack action using one of this Ability Set's traits you may target multiple opponents; for each additional target add a d6 to your dice pool and keep an additional effect die.
SFX: Battle Grace: When using one of this Ability Set's traits as part of a reaction to avoid taking damage from an attack during an Action Scene, you may remove any 1's that you roll; they do not count as opportunities if removed.
SFX: Boost: You may step up one of this Ability Set's traits for one action or reaction. If you do, shut down this SFX; activate an opportunity to recover this SFX.
SFX: Defensive Mobility: On a successful reaction using Reflexes, you may move into an adjacent zone for free.
SFX: Defensive Stance: On a successful reaction against an attempt to shut down or complicate one of this Ability Set's traits, you may inflict Physical or Ego Stress with your effect die (your choice).
SFX: Elusive: You may double Reflexes on reaction rolls; if you do remove the highest rolling die and include an additional die in your result.
SFX: Encouraging: You may use Persuasion to boost an ally's confidence by taking an action against the doom pool; if you succeed you may use your effect die to grant the ally a Asset called 'Encouraged' that they can use for the remainder of the Scene.
SFX: Extra Persuasive: You may step up or double Persuasion against a single target; if you do remove the highest-rolling die and add an additional die to your total.
SFX: Graceful: When using one of this Ability Set's traits or SFX on an action or reaction, you may remove a single 1 that you rolled from the result; it does not count as an opportunity if removed.
SFX: Grappler: When inflicting a Grapple Complication on a target you may add a d6 to your dice pool and step up your effect die.
SFX: Jumpy: When you make a reaction roll against a physical attack you may add this Ability Set's Leaping trait to your dice pool. If successful, you may reposition yourself anywhere within range of your Leaping.
SFX: Mounted Combat: You may step up or double Violence on action and reaction rolls when in combat while riding on a steed, as long as you have at least a little room to maneuver.
SFX: Perceptive: You may step up or double this Ability Set's Senses trait on action and reaction rolls.
SFX: Presence: When taking an action using one of this Ability Set's traits with the intent to inflict Ego Stress on a target, you may add d6 to your dice pool and step up the effect die.
SFX: Push [trait-name]: Step up and double [trait-name] for one action, then step back [trait-name] trait until you are able to recover it by activating an opportunity or during a Transition Scene.
SFX: Rebounding Attack: After a successful reaction against an attack that included one of this Ability Set's traits, you may double Violence for your next action.
SFX: Reinforced Armor: You may double Armor on reaction rolls; if you do step down the highest die in your dice pool and include an additional die in your total.
SFX: Resourceful: You may add a d6 and step up your effect die when using one of this Ability Set's traits to create a Asset.
SFX: Scrappy: When making a reaction roll that includes this Ability Set's Durability trait, if you are not encumbered and can move around you may also add this Ability Set's Reflexes trait to your dice pool.
SFX: Shield: When you include your Armor trait in the dice pool of a reaction roll against an attack, if you are currently using a shield you may add a d6 to your dice pool and include an additional die in your total.
SFX: Surge: In a dice pool including one of this Ability Set's traits you may remove two dice of equal steps from the dice pool; if you do you may step up one of the removed dice and put it back into your dice pool.
SFX: Tough: When using a trait from this Ability Set as part of a reaction to avoid taking Stress, if Stress is inflicted on you step it down before it is applied.
SFX: Versatile [trait-name]: You may step down and double [trait-name], or step down twice and triple [trait-name]

Elevated SFX

Nearly all SFX are Ability Set specific and only work in conjunction with one or more traits in the same Ability Set as the SFX. However sometimes an Ability Set will include one or more SFX that do not interact directly with their Ability Set's traits and either apply to the character as a whole or provide some broad capability.

Note that if an Ability Set containing such a SFX is shut down the SFX is unavailable until the Ability Set is activated or recovered.

A few examples of this type of SFX are provided below.

SFX: Armory: If you have access to your Armory you may take an action against the doom pool to put a d6 Asset representing something that might reasonably be contained therein into play immediately (GM's discretion applies). You may keep this Asset for your own use or give it to an ally.
SFX: Opportunist: Once per Scene you may activate an opportunity without spending a Plot Point.
SFX: Survivalist: Naturally occurring environmental effects never inflict Stress or Trauma on you.

Plot Point SFX

Some SFX provide greater than normal benefit to a character, but at the steep cost of requiring one (1) Plot Point to be spent.

A few examples of this type of SFX are provided below.

SFX: Deadly: When you inflict Body Stress or Trauma with an attack that includes one of this Ability Set's traits you may spend one (1) Plot Point to step it up.
SFX: Do Over: On a failed action or reaction using one of this Ability Set's traits you may spend one (1) Plot Point to reroll your result; the second result must be taken if you do this.
SFX: Glory Seeker: You may spend one (1) Plot Point to double one (1) Aptitude for the duration of the current Scene.
SFX: Plot Protection: You may spend one (1) Plot Point to avoid taking Trauma from a single attack.
SFX: Regeneration: You may use this SFX in conjunction with any action or reaction or while stressed out. If you have no Body Trauma and your Body Stress is less than or equal to this Ability Set's Stamina trait you may spend one (1) Plot Point to clear it. If you have no Body Trauma and your Body Stress is greater than this Ability Set's Stamina trait you may spend one (1) Plot Point to step it down. You may spend (1) Plot Point to step down your Body Trauma.
SFX: Vigilant: If you are adding the Senses trait from this Ability Set to the dice pool of a reaction roll you may step up or double Senses. If you fail your roll you may spend one (1) Plot Point to reroll all the dice from the failed result; the second result must be taken if you do this.

Doomed SFX

Players do not usually interact directly with the doom pool and the movement of dice to and from the doom pool is a matter described by the rules and handled by the GM.

However, some SFX can change the ways in which a player character interacts with the doom pool and might even put some measure of control of the standard doom pool mechanics in the hands of a player. Other SFX offer a greater than normal benefit to a character but at the cost of worsening the doom pool.

A few examples of this type of SFX are provided below.

SFX: All Out Attack: When taking an attack action using one of this Ability Set's traits, you may borrow a die from the doom pool and add it to your dice pool. After your action is completed step up the borrowed die and return it to the doom pool.
SFX: Burst of Strength: You may step up a die in the doom pool to step up the Strength trait from this Ability Set when adding it to the dice pool of an action or reaction.
SFX: Coolheaded: You may take a die from the doom pool, step it down, and apply it to yourself as Ego Stress.
SFX: Escalation: You may add a d8 to the doom pool to step up and double one of this Ability Set's traits for your next action or reaction.
SFX: Exterminator: After stressing out or killing someone during an Action Scene, you may step down the highest die in the doom pool.
SFX: Feedback Loop: After inflicting Ego Trauma on a target, you may remove the highest die in the doom pool.
SFX: Reckless: You may borrow a d8 or d10 from the doom pool and add it to your dice pool for your next action or reaction using one of this Ability Set's traits. After your action is completed step up the borrowed die and return it to the doom pool.
SFX: Regulator: You may spend one (1) Plot Point to borrow the highest die in the doom pool to use for your next action or reaction that includes one of this Ability Set's traits; if you do this step back and return the borrowed die to the doom pool after your action or reaction is completed.
SFX: Second Wind: You may step up one of this Ability Set's traits for your next action if you move your Body Stress die to the doom pool.
SFX: Unleashed: You may step up or double one of this Ability Set's traits for one action. If the action fails, add a die to the doom pool equal to the normal die rating of that Ability trait.
SFX: Unstoppable: If you are taking an action that includes the Stamina trait from this Ability Set in its dice pool and the action is successful, you may step down your Body Stress die and move it to the doom pool.

Ranged, Melee, and Unarmed SFX

Many characters rely on the Ranged, Melee, or Unarmed traits as their means of attacking opponents. SFX offer ways for individual characters to differentiate themselves in this area.

A few examples of this type of SFX are provided below. Note that such SFX make the assumption that they are in an Ability Set which includes the trait referred to in the rules text.

SFX: Deadly Blow: On a successful Melee attack that inflicts Body damage you may step up the effect die.
SFX: Deadly Shot: On a successful Ranged attack that inflicts Body damage you may step up the effect die.
SFX: Double Shot: When making an attack action you may step down and double your Ranged trait and keep an additional effect die for one additional target.
SFX: Double Strike: When making an attack action you may step down and double your Melee or Unarmed trait and keep an additional effect die for one additional target.
SFX: Heavy Weight Brawler: When taking an action or reaction that includes Unarmed you may include Strength in your dice pool as well.
SFX: Martial Artist: All opponents who react to your Melee or Unarmed actions must replace the highest die in their dice pool with a d4.
SFX: Return Fire: You may include your Ranged trait in a reaction roll against a Ranged attack; if you succeed you may use your effect die to inflict Body Stress upon your attacker.
SFX: Riposte: When you include your Melee or Unarmed trait in a reaction roll against a Melee or Unarmed attack and succeed, you may use your effect die to inflict Body Stress upon your attacker.
SFX: Stunning Blow: When you make an attack action that includes your Unarmed trait or Strength trait, if the target gives you an opportunity on their reaction roll you may include an extra effect dice to inflict a Complication on them called 'Stunned' that prevents the target from taking actions other than attempting to remove the Complication.
SFX: Trips Throws and Takedowns: When inflicting Body Stress on an opponent using Unarmed, you may also inflict the Complication 'Knocked Down: d6' on them.
SFX: Tooth and Claw: If attacking with Unarmed, step back the highest die in your dice pool and add a d6 to your dice pool; step up Body Stress inflicted if your attack is succesful.

Weapon-specific SFX

By default the use of all melee weapons falls under the catch-all Melee trait, and the use of all ranged weapons falls under the Ranged trait. A character with Melee: d10 is very good with all kinds of melee weapons, for instance.

However the use of a specific kind of weapon is integral to some character concepts, and SFX offer a way to reflect this in such a character's write up by making them specifically good with a particular weapon.

A few standard SFX templates are provided below for such characters; simply replace the [weapon-type] placeholder with the name of a specific kind of weapon such as Sword or Bow or Pistol, as applicable. Such abilities are usually equally applicable to either Melee or Ranged depending on the specific type of weapon; i.e. Melee for Swords, Ranged for Bows, and so on.

A few examples of this type of SFX are provided below.

SFX: Armed Deflection: You may include [Melee|Ranged] in reaction rolls against Ranged attacks when wielding a [weapon-type] if you are aware of your attacker and able to move.
SFX: Lethal Weapon: You may add d6 to your dice pool and step up the effect die if you are taking an action to inflict Body Stress while using the [Melee|Ranged] trait and wielding a [weapon-type].
SFX: [weapon-type] Master: You may take a d6 from the doom pool and add it to your dice pool on action rolls that include [Melee|Ranged] if your current weapon is a [weapon-type]; if you do so you may keep an extra die for your total.
SFX: [weapon-type] Specialist: You are specialized in the use of [weapon-type]s; you may step up and double [Melee|Ranged] when using such a weapon and must step down [Melee|Ranged] when using any other sort of weapon.

Ability Set Activation SFX

Normally all of a character's Ability Sets are always considered to be on or available at all times. However some Ability Sets take one or more Limits which either require an Ability Set to be specifically "activated", or define some circumstance which will "shut down" an Ability Set. Alternately, some SFX will shut down the Ability Set they are in but provide a temporary boost or power up.

While having some or all of their Ability Sets shut down diminishes the capabilities of a character, they also provide an opportunity for such a character to take one or more SFX that have an automatic effect when the Ability Set they are in is activated or deactivated.

A few examples of this type of SFX are provided below.

SFX: Berserker: When this Ability Set is activated clear your Body Stress, step up your Violence trait, and step down your Smarts and Finesse traits. When this Ability Set is shut down reset your Violence, Smarts, and Finesse traits to their original values and take d8 Ego Stress.
SFX: Invigorating: When you activate this Ability Set step up your Body Stress die and move it to the doom pool. You may spend one (1) Plot Point to do the same when you shut down this Ability Set.