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[Fiasco / Occult Underground] An Occult Underground twist for any Fiasco playset

Troy Swain

Registered User
Validated User
I’ve cobbled large parts of this monstrosity (and most of the ideas) completely from The Fiasco playset add-on The Living Dead and The Unknown Armies hack for Apocalypse World, The World of Our Desires

This is not a complete playset!

This supplement is a playset add-on—a collection of results to be plugged into any other playset. In other words, you’ll need another playset to use this one.

How it works
• Choose a playset that works with the Occult Underground and grab some dice.
• In the Occult Underground there’s a ton of Tilts. That’s what magick is all about. (And it’s the Occult Underground, of course magic is spelt with a ‘k’.)
• Gather up the dice as usual—two white and two black for each player.
• Swap “stunt dice” into the dice pool, and proceed with the Setup as usual. “Stunt dice” means replace two white dice and two black dice with four “stunt dice” of a different color. Then roll them all into a central pile and proceed with the Setup. As usual, only the numbers matter, so the stunt dice don’t change anything yet.
• There is an extra NEEDS table called “NOT A NEED, AN OBSESSION.” On top of the normal Need table from the playset, everyone will use at least one OBSESSION from this playset, and connect it to a player. If there are three players, there will be one Need and one Obsession. If four players, one Need and two Obsessions. If five players, two Need and two Obsessions.
• Whenever a stunt die is used to resolve a scene, MAGICK!
• MAGICK is attached to an OBSESSION, an OBJECT, or a LOCATION.
• Whenever players resolve a scene, they can choose a black or white die for normal resolution or they can choose a stunt die. If a stunt die is chosen, stop the scene and look at the “MAGICK TILT TABLE” below.
• The main player in the scene will roll all four stunt dice and check for the results. When this is complete, return all of the stunt dice to wherever they were before.
• Continue the scene, but now magick MUST show up in the scene somehow, and must be attached to an obsession, an object, or a location. This is a magick outcome, and it isn’t necessarily good or bad, but it probably won’t turn out well.
• Write the new Occult Underground aspect on a new index card, and place the card on the table.
• The Magick Tilt stays on the table and should be used for the rest of the game.
• Try to tie the Tilt into a magickal outcome as well. You might be able to use the previous Magick Tilts.
• When calculating the Tilt and the Aftermath, don’t roll the stunt dice. They don’t contribute to your end fate.

This playset is especially brutal, since there's less black and white dice. If you want to use this to start a campaign, make sure you choose two different colored dice for the stunt dice (e.g., green and red on top of the normal black and white) and count the stunt dice as black and white for the final totals. Also, if you want to use this to start a campaign, use the Soft Aftermath instead of the regular Aftermath.


 (try to replace with an addictive object in play)
1 Alcohol
2 Adrenaline
3 Self-harm
4 Gambling
5 Methamphetamine
6 To be thin

2 I’M HARDBOILED… (try to tie into another need in play)
1 … and I will show everyone the darkness that underlies it all
2 … and I will reunite with my loved one, no matter what
3 … and I will expose them all
4 … and I will get my revenge
5 … and I will get even with the evil people
6 … and I will stop the predestined horrible event

3 I WILL PAY WITH YOUR LIFE TO GET… (try to replace with an object or place in play)

1 Rare books on birds
2 Out of circulation and rare currency
3 Clockwork automata
4 New mathematics for making complicated origami
5 The never released Kaiju movies from Shintoho
6 German expressionist comics

4 I CAN NOT STOP THINKING ABOUT… (try to tie into another need in play)
1 … someone who abused you
2 … someone you abused
3 … a relationship that ended on bad terms
4 … an addiction you’ve kicked
5 … an accident you could have prevented
6 … a disaster you couldn’t have predicted

5 THIS HAS THE TRUTH FOR ALL OF US… (try to replace with an object in play)

1 Zoroastrian astrology
2 Psilocybin mushrooms
3 Non-Euclidean geometry
4 Carl von Clausewitz's On War
5 Alejandro Jodorowsky’s The Holy Mountain
6 Our sentient corporate overlords

6 I LOVE YOU, BUT I CAN’T HELP BUT… (try to tie into another need in play)
1 … lie to people
2 … make people angry
3 … make people laugh
4 … make everyone want me
5 … want everyone to love me
6 … learn people’s secrets

(A magick result attached to an Obsession, an Object, or a Location)


1 Everyone is suddenly drunk and out of control
2 Someone (or many) flip out violently
3 At a touch, another is… different
4 Out of control rampage
5 Pain, followed by confusion
6 Magnificent self-destruction


1 Betrayed by friends
2 Wracked with pain, spasms on the ground
3 Impossible to stop
4 Unbelievable, unreal, unforgiving
5 Pulling the trigger, or doing the deed, with whatever is around
6 Immediate explosions


1 You suddenly know you can fly
2 Suddenly a thing becomes to-die-for to all who see it
3 Holy shit, how is that moving?! Oh please, no...
4 A limb (or something as precious) suddenly collapses into itself in a complicated pattern
5 A massive structure collapses, as if Godzilla hit it
6 Paranoia, pain, blood

1 Insurmountable guilt and pain
2 You just let them hurt you
3 Your heart… ow… can’t move…
4 Suddenly fucked up
5 Things chaotic and out of control
6 It predicts our immediate painful mutilation

1 What am I looking at? Oh my god, noooo...
2 Someone nearby turns inside out
3 Door and walls leading to someplace… else
4 Everything around me is attacking!
5 Is everyone hallucinating? Or is it just me?
6 Suddenly they’re after you. Even the street signs!

1 Everything they say is true
2 Violent uncontrollable rage
3 There’s no stop to this laughter
4 You’ll do whatever is asked
5 You’ll defend them to the grave
6 A secret rips all apart

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Troy Swain

Registered User
Validated User
We ran this "Occult Underground add-on" last night with a "Williamsburg: Hipster Haven" playset that I made. I think I might just replace one Need with an Obsession next time, since we had two Needs and Two Obsessions, and some stuff never came into play. However, it worked pretty great!

There were five players and we were all somehow connected to the art world, and were all dealing with electronic fine art. The shlemiel of the group, a genius hacker/artist of indiscriminate gender, kept having hir art work stolen from various other members, and sie had revenge: a giant biofeedfack machine installed in the middle of a half-sunken barge for an illegal art show. That "art piece" made secrets visible, and eventually twisted bodies and time and space and ended with a near TPK, which is pretty standard in Fiasco.
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