A Compendium Class for Dungeon World
This is a compendium class for Dungeon World (DW), created for submission to the contest sponsored by the Discern Realities podcast, and was inspired by the River mechanic in the RPG Weapons of the Gods.
Fate’s Pawn allows the character to sacrifice good fortune now for good fortune in the future. This class, with more advanced moves, may also be used with those around them. What is unusual about this compendium class is no move has a trigger of its own — instead moves are triggered by rolls made for other moves.
If you visit the Black Gate and successfully bargain with death, upon return to the mortal realm, you may take the moves THE GLASS, THE GLASS IS HALF EMPTY, and THE GLASS IS HALF FULL immediately. Future advances may be taken from the remaining moves in the Fate’s Pawn compendium class.
Draw a single square on your character sheet just big enough to place a single d6 in and label it “The Glass”.
Accepting THE GLASS always leaves a mark on the recipient. What does it look like?
Fate can bring ill and good luck.
The glass is half empty or full.
Evil or righteous when struck,
it’s a wash at the Black Gate’s pull.
THE GLASS IS HALF EMPTY
Anytime you roll 2d6, you may take the highest die from the roll and place it in your glass if your glass has room. The single remaining die, and any modifier(s), are now the result of your roll. If the result is 6 or less, you DO NOT mark experience. The result is otherwise resolved in the fiction as usual.
The first time you use this move, what does it look like? This move is very different from THE GLASS IS HALF FULL — something is being taken or lost, and fate smiles upon you.
Fate is like ice.
A cold and hard reality that floats to the surface,
shows little of its true nature,
and doesn’t like to be poked.
THE GLASS IS HALF FULL
Anytime you roll 2d6, you may take a die from your glass (if you have one in there) and roll all three dice, using two of your choice. The two dice choose, and any modifier(s), are now the result of your roll. If the result is 6 or less, you mark TWO experience.
The first time you use this move, what does it look like? This move is very different from THE GLASS IS HALF EMPTY — something is being given or gained, and fate frowns upon you.
Fate can be fickle, especially when pushing one’s luck.
It’s best to just sip lightly from the top.
A BIGGER GLASS
Add a square above or below the the one already existing on the character sheet representing THE GLASS expanding it to hold a second d6. This move, like the others, is only taken once — the glass should never be more than two bits of fate in size.
How does the mark on your character representing your glass change?
Fate is willing to give you more rope to hang yourself with.
A GLASS BIG ENOUGH FOR EVERYONE
You have played with your own fate enough that you can see the winds of fate in others. Anytime anyone in your party rolls, you may use THE GLASS IS HALF EMPTY or THE GLASS IS HALF FULL on or for the character making the roll. The difference now, Death assigns you an accountant.
Every time you use THE GLASS IS HALF FULL on someone other than yourself, the GM will give you one Dark Fate token (the actual token can be anything including a mark on your character sheet). Fate frowns upon you.
Every time you use THE GLASS IS HALF EMPTY on someone other than yourself, the GM will take one Dark Fate token from you if you have any. Fate smiles upon you.
Death frowns upon those that change fate to avoid an audience.
Death smiles on those that change fate to hasten a visit the Black Gate.
Death and a Dark Fate
If the character, after taking the Fate’s Pawn compendium class, visits the Black Gate again, the books must be balanced. If the character is currently in possession of one or more Dark Fate tokens, any rolls to cheat Death, the character takes -1 forward for each Dark Fate token they have on the roll at the Black Gate. If the character does not currently possess any Dark Fate tokens, the character takes +1 forward on the roll at the Black Gate. Note that the bits of fate in the glass may NOT be used when bargaining with Death.
When all bargaining is complete, and the character successfully cheats Death again, THE GLASS is empty and the character keeps all Dark Fate tokens they brought to the Black Gate with them.
Even the GM gives Death their due.