I noticed recently that the general Fate tag is being removed from The Dresden Files RPG questions. As the DFRPG is the penultimate example of Fate v3, I sort of disagree with that decision, and wanted to get a general consensus as to when the general game identification tag should be removed from a licensed property.


Tags are first and foremost about organising and collecting together questions and answers that are useful for someone who is interested in only that tag. That gives us an excellent litmus test for whether something should have a more general tag or not:

  • If it's useful to someone who follows the tag but who doesn't give a monkey's uncle about DFRPG, then it should have the fate tag.
  • If it's useful to someone who follows the tag but who doesn't give a flying hoot about Fate generally, then it should have the DFRPG tag.

Some questions will have both tags. Some will only have one or the other. This has almost nothing to do with whether the question just happens to be by someone using DFRPG – it's entirely possible for someone to be asking about DFRPG but the actual meat of the question is about Fate and nothing specific to DFRPG, and therefore not have the DFRPG tag.

This is analogous to tags like or . Obviously they're using some kind of system, but we do not give it a system tag unless the question is intimately tied to that system and useful to people who follow that system's tag.


Sometimes a topic can't be generalized.

If the subject in question is specific to the property and can't be easily generalized to other games in the system, the general tag should be considered for removal. I don't think this is a hard-and-fast idea, but I think it's a matter of being honest about the scope of the question's topic.

We don't tag 3.5-specific questions with , and doesn't get added to all d20-System games. I think the same concept should be used with FATE and its subsystems as applicable. The modularity of FATE makes it a bit muddier, but I tried to only hit cases that seemed clear-cut.

Almost universally, games using the FATE engine contain customized elements that don't generalize to the rest of the the FATE experience. DFRPG falls firmly into this category; it's among the crunchiest of all FATE games. I removed from questions whose answers were specific to DFRPG and could not easily be generalized beyond that game's setting, context, or unique ruleset variants (some vampire-specific questions and one about whether you should read the books before you play the game, for instance).

If I felt that the answers could reasonably be applied to experiences in non-DFRPG games, I happily left in place. But where it felt misleading to say it was a FATE question instead of a DFRPG-specific one, I pulled 'em (for example, a question in which the only DFRPG reference was a DFRPG-specific example of a broader FATE concept being addressed).

I also pulled a couple of s off some questions that arose in a DFRPG context but with no need for DFRPG-specific content in the answers. Again, when in doubt I left the existing tags alone, but tagging basic topics universal to FATE with the DFRPG label seemed dishonest about the extent to which DFRPG itself is covered in the site.

  • \$\begingroup\$ To take an example: rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/21880/… There are some general discussions about Fate as a system, and the relationship of Fate to DFRPG. Again, DFRPG is the v3 of the Fate rules, with Fate Core being the v4 of those rules. In many cases, there is crossover and removing it removes that crossover unnecessarily IMO. It also, to a certain extent, make certain things harder to find by removing a logical relationship. \$\endgroup\$
    – Chuck Dee
    Apr 11 '13 at 17:48
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @wraith808 There is not Fate 3. Fate 3 is just what people who really really wish there was something after Fate 2 want to call the system inside DFRPG, but until someone separates it out, Fate 3 doesn't exist except as an ideal. DFRPG is DFRPG, it is not Fate 3. If someone did separate the underlying system from the setting, that would be Fate 3, and it would look different from DFRPG. DFRPG is a game that uses Fate 3, but not everying to do with DFRPG is about its underlying system. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 11 '13 at 18:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie - Fred Hicks has said a few times that DFRPG is the penultimate Fate v3. If the designer says that, it has more than a bit of weight, does it not? \$\endgroup\$
    – Chuck Dee
    Apr 11 '13 at 19:25
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @wraith808 It does, but there's still no separate thing that can be called "Fate 3". Someone asking a question about how Fate 3 works, using DFRPG as a reference but not playing DFRPG, should use the Fate tag (like what's the diff between a block and a compel). Someone asking about features of DFRPG that aren't general Fate questions should use the DFRPG tag (like how to do cargen). Asking about how a Fate thing works as implemented in DFRPG should get both (like how stress tracks work). \$\endgroup\$ Apr 11 '13 at 19:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie - I'm not arguing with that- in fact, I guess that's the gist of the answer. Someone asking about Fate 3 mechanics is going to basically be asking in the context of The DFRPG... and your exact example, how stress tracks work, was removed from the Dresden Files tag, i.e. rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/9531/…. I think it's a bit overzealous, and will make it harder to find if someone comes looking for it from the DFRPG angle. \$\endgroup\$
    – Chuck Dee
    Apr 11 '13 at 22:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ @wraith808 Ah! I see... Well stress is always one of the biggest things tweaked between Fate games, so I'd say removing the DFRPG tag there is incorrect. I've added it back. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 11 '13 at 22:25

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .