You start with 3 fate points (FP). Spending a fate point lets you do one of the following things:
- Change the fiction so that it works to your advantage. You can say: “It just so happens that shopkeeper is my cousin!” Maybe he can cut you a deal on supplies. This is called creating narrative advantage.
- Explode a die.
- Defy death when you’re on death’s door.
Exploding a Die
When you explode a die, describe how your hero is pushing the pedal to the metal to succeed where it otherwise might have been impossible. You then roll the die again and add the result to your roll. If the exploded die lands on a 6, you explode again. There is no limit to the number of times you can explode a die, but beware: if you roll a 1, you will have to confirm a critical.
Create Narrative Advantage
There are some limitations on the use of fate points to create narrative advantage.
- You can't declare a fate point after the GM has provided a resolution. If the GM just finished describing how the bad guy got away with the princess and you had every opportunity to declare narrative advantage before it happened, it's too late to do so.
- The use of fate points can't affect the narrative result of a critical failure. Similarly, a fate point can't affect a roll to confirm a critical.
- Creating narrative advantage can sometimes be used to break the rules. For example, if you're out of MP but you really need to cast a spell, you could use a fate point to say that you reach deep down inside to your secret reservoir of psychic power to cast that spell anyway. This sort of breaking of the rules is borne out of changing the fiction, and that's why it works. But you can't just shout, "I spend a fate point!" to break the rules without first establishing how you're changing the fiction. In any event, the GM always gets the final say.
The Game Master’s Guide contains many examples that illustrate the use of fate points. When in doubt, don’t hesitate to ask your GM what’s possible.