Role-playing Games Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for gamemasters and players of tabletop, paper-and-pencil role-playing games. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

CRoss and I were playing a FATE game (Diaspora) recently and we rolled a tied number for attacking and defending with beam weapons.

What happens when attacker and defender tie?

share|improve this question
up vote 9 down vote accepted

In the specific case of an attacker trying to overcome a defender, if you don't get a shift, the defender doesn't take any stress or consequences. See the Resolving Attacks section of the FATE SRD. This kind of equates to "the defender wins ties" though you can more specifically narrate it as a "hit but didn't damage" scenario if you want (not that FATE hit rolls are sim like that, but you can still use rolls low = miss, ties - hit but not hurt for off the cuff narration purposes).

share|improve this answer
In some FATE games, such as Dreasden Files, weapons deal extra stress: a net zero on the attack is a hit and the only inflicted stress is from the weapon damage (since there are no shifts to use on damage). – Quentin Sep 9 '12 at 19:17

There are some distinct cases depending on how the success of the roll is measured. Technically, there are no "Ties" in FATE. If an opposed roll result is 0, it may mean one of three things.

  • If the roll is for a subjective result on the ladder, then 0 corresponds to a Mediocre result, whoever was trying to accomplish something achieves a mediocre result and narrates it.
  • If the roll is to determine how long something takes on the time track, then it takes the baseline amount of time as determined by the GM/referee.
  • If the roll is for a game mechanic requiring shifts, then no shifts are generated. If this means no success at all, so be it, but it is better than a -1 for example, because invoking an aspect at this point gives you two shifts instead of one. This is the one that applies to your beam weapon situation.
share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.