Translated from Latin: fac.is V facio, facere, feci, factus V
do, make; create; acquire; cause, bring about, fashion; compose; accomplish
fac.is N F fax, facis N F
torch, firebrand, fire; flame of love; torment
FACIS also stands for
Focus, Athletics, Combat, Intelligence, and Social,
the five Stats used in the system.
FACIS is a simple, fast, realistic skeletal role-playing system applicable to any genre,
designed to allow diceless live-action play of paranormal but not supernormal characters.
The FACIS role-playing system is an ongoing creation
which was playtested in 2004 at the Cleveland Speakeasy Chronicles.
Below are the articles of faith for the system, the principles that guide game design.
If this system sounds like something of interest to you, send an email to FACIS AT peterwells DOT com
and join the list of people who might receive a beta copy of the rules, as printing allows.
FACIS Articles of Faith:
I. Roleplaying, not gaming or competing
This system is skeletal and uncomplicated, giving just enough rules to provide a structure for players to create diverse and detailed Player Characters (PCs) without Director supervision, and providing a minimum of random elements to manufacture surprise outcomes. This is to promote role-play and theater over challenge-throwing and competition. To this end, the throwing of random elements is optional, and can be bypassed by cooperative narration if all parties involved agree to do so.
II. Non-Supernormal Characters
This game is designed to allow creation of characters in any genre. In order to maintain game balance, the system allows creation of ‘normal’ characters (humans, investigators, thieves, etc.) and ‘paranormal’ characters (lesser wizards, cyberpunks, elves, etc). Normal humans will always remain relevant in any of these genres when using the FACIS system. Characters who by definition are immune to many hazards that affect humans must be disallowed.
III. Speed, No Retests, Lack of Complexity and Mathematics
This system is based in speed of play and ease of completion of tests. Any retests (repetition of thrown challenges, second throws) will be avoided in game design. The system is designed so that no rulebook needs to be on hand to complete any single challenge or test. All system functions are as simple as possible while maintaining realism and allowing for random chance. Rules are written so that the average player need only look them up once. Anything that a player can pay points for in character creation is either a Stat or Talent. Gifts are purchased at the same point prices as Talents, and are listed there. There will be no new categories to spend player points on. Likewise the only category of negative aspect, disadvantage or flaw is the Weaknesses category.
IV. Metaphysics and Paranormality
Paranormality is simply paranormal. Arguments about relation of metaphysical components in a game including more than one genre are arguments about fictional elements and thus pointless. The system simply separates the normal from the non-normal (fiction) and disallows super-normal PCs (i.e., those which the impair the relevance of normal human characters) but still allows super-normal Non-Player Characters (NPCs). All questions on the function of paranormal elements will be answered with that which makes the best scene.
V. Rule of Fives
This game system will NEVER allow a player character with a Stat or Talent greater than 5, or a combination of more than 1 Stat or more than 1 Talent, for a maximum possible combination total of 10. The definition of a character so powerful she could only be an NPC is a Stat/Talent combination greater than 10. FACIS will never contain a sixth Stat. The number 5 is used extensively throughout the system.
FACIS was conceived in Cleveland, Ohio in 2000
by Ken Crawford, Matt Kleckner and Peter Wells
and was written, illustrated and prepared for press in 2002
by Peter Wells
With special thanks to:
John Davis, Steve Donley, Fred Garber,
Randy Howard, Jack McCarthy, and Mark Stern
For their ideas, input, and arguments
© August 1st, 2002 Peter Wells