Race and Gender
In this chapter, we are given a look at the races of FATAL, and how FATAL handles the matter of the sexes
In FATAL there are some 16 races. Now Hall does acknowledge that they are actually different species, but since we’re used to calling them races that’s what he calls them.
There are Dwarfs and Elves, but there are also races such as Bugbears, Kobolds, Ogres, and Trolls. Then there are the Anakim, crossbreeds between demons and humans. There are differences statistically between the races, with Strength―as an example―ranging ranging from -60 for an elf―light or dark―to +275 for a Gruagach Ogre. Which means that the Average Elf has a Strength of 90, while the average Gruagach has a Strength of 425―given a base range between 1 and 199. There are other modifiers, such that Elves typically have a common sense of 160, while Kinder-Fresser Ogres have one of 120, which means that they’re not what you’d call wise.
When you get right down to it races such as Ogres and Trolls are rather nasty sorts. But next to even the Kinder-Fresser Kobolds are downright vile. In FATAL the Kobolds are not what you’d find in other RPGs. No, in FATAL the Kobolds are human in appearance by and large, but they are also arrogant, nasty, cruel, and out to enslave all the other races, even Anakim. And treacherous on top of it all.
Which brings us to the matter of how the different races get along. By and large they don’t. In fact Hill Trolls rather dislike each other in general. In FATAL the different attitudes are given a numerical rating ranging from one for races that look favorably on another, to five when the race in general would sooner see another race expunged from existence. Based on that you can then learn what an individual thinks of another individual, even when they’re of the same race. Depending on the roll of 3d10 it is possible of a White Dwarf to utterly despise another White Dwarf, or for a Kobold to actually be great good friends with a Light Elf. Not very likely, but still possible.
Here is where I can see great potential for role playing, though you don’t have to agree with me.
In this part of the chapter we get a look at how Byron Hall thought of Men and Women. In his world by and large Men were superior.
All races exhibit the sexual dimorphism where males are most often larger and stronger than the females. While this is true of humans and wapiti in reality, among animals such as the blowfish it is quite the opposite. And even when the guys are larger and stronger when you’re dealing with an animal such as H. sapiens you’d better treat the smaller and weaker party with a fair degree of respect. Still you do get the situation where female Elves of either type get a -90 to Strength, while male Gruagach get a +305. The only advice I can give you is to use your talents to the best of your ability, and let him have his talents.
With such as the Kinder-Fresser and Kobold running around I can see where you’d think there’s nothing that could be considered good here. But then you have races such as the Dwarves who can shape change. For instance, White Dwarfs can change into butterflies, and often do so, so they can go flitting about under the moonlight. Black Dwarfs turn into screech owls instead.
However, Dwarfs and Subterranean Trolls also turn into stone under the light of the sun, so Dwarfs do prefer to go outside their caverns and tunnels at night. And if you’re wondering how to tell a Black Dwarf from the others, they have the feet of crows.
We’re at the end now, next time we’ll have a look at chapter 2: Body.