Ideas for Hazards

I love the idea of Hazards as per the Fate Adversary Toolkit, but in our games combat rarely happens around machine gun turrets, giant whirling machines, and vats of acid. Any ideas for mundane, “suburban” hazards?

What kind if setting / combats occur in your suburbia - Playing Cats? Sprinklers (mental stress?), dogs on a leash, lawnmowers, skunks…

Super spies? That granny with the binoculars next block over might be a spotter… with her grandson being a sniper. And they don’t even know which house she is in.

Kids on bikes? Broken bottles on the road, lightning, rabid dog, storm drain with a demonic clown…

No matter what kind of obstacles, adding things in the scene that can’t be easily damaged directly and might harm the PCs forces them to change their approach / plan.

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Thanks! We tend to have our fight scenes in bars, office buildings, a bank, supermarkets, city park, beaches, etc. I usually have no shortage of interesting scene aspects–but not many that will actively complicate the player’s lives. I love your suggestions!

One common complication we have is crowds of people. I have had players need to make overcome rolls using Rapport or Intimidate as they move from zone to zone–but I’m thinking of ways that that “obstacle” might suddenly become a threat. (When the crowd turns against the party in the bar, not understanding that the guy you just assaulted is really a necromancer, etc.)

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Oh, you can have loads of fun.
Tire breakers at parking entrance / exits, tall buildings with glass panes that shatter raining glass shards on the party, other falling debris, gas leaks / explosions, sink holes, zoo animals who broke free, etc. Distractions presenting moral choices are neat too.

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Think about your typical action movie. There’s often a meeting, combat, or chase in a restaurant kitchen. Open flames, chefs with long knives, pots of boiling water, harried waiters carrying trays full of food. I wouldn’t typically represent those as hazards, usually they would be environmental aspects, and the waiter might be an obstacle. But you might could do something with that.

Mob bosses often have a pig pit, piranha tank, shark tank, dog-fighting pit.

Might be a confused civilian or a security guard with a gun, or just an angry business owner with fists.

What can the bad guy do to create a hazard? Set something on fire, knock out a support pillar, cause the building to collapse, create an energy vortex or wall that the players must get around.


Great ideas! Thanks! I love the idea of “creating hazards”—I get stuck thinking environmental aspects are always there before the fight breaks out!