Frequently Asked Questions
In this section of the website we will answer Frequently Asked Questions that we receive from our
, especially from players with a high rating in
Culture (Freedom Underground)
. This area of the site will be updated regularly as we receive more questions that people have about the game.
What is The Future Belongs To Us?
The Future Belongs to Us is a role-playing game (RPG) in which one or more players control the actions of characters in a story and perform simple improvisational acting. Players use the
books and accessories
available on this website to make characters, define their abilities, and handle conflict resolution. The game takes place in the year 2048, resembling the world we live in today save for the societal and technological changes brought on by world events. What happens in the story is entirely up to you and your fellow players as you take actions that have the potential to shape the future to come.
Who plays The Future Belongs To Us?
We have players as young as 11 years old all the way up to people in their 50s. There is a mix of female and male players from many different ethnicities. There are players living everywhere from California to South Carolina. In the beta testing alone there have been countless game sessions with over a dozen people sitting around one table! Since the publication of the Player's Guide, the game has also spread to many countries in Europe!
What are some features of the game that makes The Future Belongs To Us stand out?
A few of the more notable features include an experience system that allows you to change the direction of your character's growth as often as every session. You can spend as little or as much time as you want to make exactly the character you want to play. Your character is able to do cool stuff, even at starting level. The game features easily customizable armor that separately defines armor coverage from damage reduction. Player driven game mechanics free up the Game Master to focus on the narrative. It also features a clean, quick, and easy to play combat system with as much detail, depth, and realism as you want.
How does character creation work?
Twelve Archetypes are provided in the Player's Guide, plus a template for an "Average Human", all of which can be easily modified as much as you want. Players that want to make an original character from scratch can do so with the game's vast character creation system. After you start playing your character, almost all abilities can be added later in some form or fashion, although some require you to actually acquire them in the story instead of spending "Extropic Points".
What system/game mechanics does The Future Belongs To Us use?
The Future Belongs To Us uses the DiceLight system. To play, only a single twenty sided die is required. For the GM, no dice are required. During "Quick Phases" when combat is taking place, the players roll the die to perform both Attack and Defensive actions. Defensive actions include dodging, blocking, evasion, countermoves, and preemption. There is great flexibility in the types of character that you can play, ranging from generalist to extreme specialization. You can be a character that specializes in fighting multiple opponents, be a master of stealth and infiltration, be a socially connected character that can call upon the aid of NPCs, or be a researcher that creates new equipment for the party just to name a few possibilities. You can mix and match abilities freely to make a character that is good in multiple areas at the expense of being more specialized.
What is the setting like?
The game world has self driving/flying cars that can be summoned to you, three orbital space stations that characters can sneak onto, humanoid robots, new animals that have been created through genetic engineering, fabricators that can create equipment for you from base materials, endoputers inside of your body powered by body heat and kinetics, invisibility clothing, cling gloves that allow you to climb up walls and ceilings, nanomesh armor, powered suits that can become autonomous when no one is wearing them, flying surveillance cameras, infrasonic handguns, adhesive mind reading devices, holographic home computers, and many more fantastic elements.
There are various groups of varying influence that play a role in the game world. The Hardbodies are a powerful gang/crime syndicate that have largely marginalized all others. The government either can not or does not do much to contain their behaviors. The UNE is an overarching global government that oversees all individual nations and supplies police and military forces to "keep the peace". Unfortunately, usually it is ordinary people that are handled by the UNE forces and not more dangerous threats. A large number of cults of personality have arisen with followers claiming to witness impossible miracles from individual "Mystics". Many of these claims are unverified, but they are becoming harder to deny. There is another organization known as "The Brotherhood" by people who believe in them. This group is largely based on myth and speculation, and very little is known about them. However, many believe them to be a collective of power brokers that actually control world events. The player characters are part of a loose confederation of liberty oriented people known as the Freedom Underground. They largely operate independently or as part of cells to achieve what they personally consider important objectives. By and large they serve to bring justice to ordinary people where others have failed them.
What are the major themes that The Future Belongs To Us explores?
The game world explores the issues of the erosion of personal privacy, the curtailments of personal freedoms, the lack of transparency between ordinary people and "power brokers", the necessity of self reliance, and how technology can provide innovative solutions to problems.
Is the game more of a strategy game or storytelling game?
The game has been praised for being able to seamlessly fluctuate between a heavy combat and strategy game on one hand, to a heavily story driven system, depending on who's running it or who's playing in it, and it doesn't really feel like it suffers from being too integrated into one mindset.
What information does the Player's Guide cover?
The Player's Guide describes the setting and covers gameplay rules, character creation, ability descriptions, details on technology creation and Current Projects, computer hacking rules, equipment stats, and a chapter on martial arts.
Who is that girl on the cover of the Player's Guide?
Cerese, one of the signature characters of the game. She is an influential participant in the Freedom Underground who may help the players.
How do I make an effective Melee Weapons character that deals a lot of damage?
Max out Upper Body Strength at 9, raise it even higher with Body Upgrades or Genetic Enhancements if you can. Don't waste too many Extropic Points on Agility. You should be primarily blocking with a melee weapon for defense. If you are attacking an opponent with a lot of Armor Coverage, aim for an unarmored area or at least a less armored area. To increase damage, take multiple Actions, aim for a vital area, or both. In a firefight, take 100% cover and use concealed guard to make the enemy come to you.
Can I use the Hand-to-Hand Combat Proficiency to use gauntlets, a shield, or a weapon strapped to my wrist?
No, you must use the Melee Weapons Proficiency or your base Dexterity.
Can I use Agility to increase my flying speed with the Wings Genetic Enhancement?
No, Agility only increases your movement speed on the ground or in water.
If a player character is dodging a Full Auto attack from an NPC, how do you determine if the entire volley misses?
If a player rolls a 19 or 20 on any of the Agility rolls to dodge shots from the Full Auto attack, the entire volley misses, even if any 1s are rolled.
What is the maximum rating a character can have in Stamina?
Under the default rules, there is no maximum rating for Stamina. If a GM wants to increase the realism and difficulty of the game, he can set a maximum rating at whatever level he feels is appropriate. For pure realism, the maximum rating that a character can have in Stamina should be in the 10-16 range.
Can I use the Sense Opening Martial Arts Technique on robots?
If the robot is humanoid, you can. If it is not a humanoid robot, you can not.
Is there a level cap on Stealth? It's so cheap!
You can set a maximum rating that a Player Character can have in Stealth if you want to. Keep in mind that the Stealth Proficiency should not allow characters to hide behind things that are narrower than their bodies, walk between two people that are face to face, or prevent themselves from being seen on camera no matter how high their level is. Be sensible when considering what is allowable with the Stealth Proficiency in your particular campaign based on the level of realism desired.
How does Ego work for animals?
Animals don't have Ego. During Quick Phases, they act at the same time as their trainer if they are a companion, otherwise they act after all characters with Passion 1 have gone, but before any characters that have Contempt.
When my character spends a month to increase another Player Character's Culture rating, do I have to tell the player how much I am going to increase it by before he commits to making it his character's Current Project for the month?
No, you can just say that you are going to show him the ropes and introduce him to people. You can award any amount of Culture Skill that you want to him up to 10% of your rating. Once his rating is 10% of yours, it is up to him to increase his rating any further by himself.
Does using an infrasonic weapon break stealth?
Yes, infrasonic weapon use against an opponent breaks stealth against people in that room, but possibly not against people who might hear the combat taking place from an adjacent room. Infrasonic attacks themselves are silent, but the sound of an unconscious body dropping to the floor is not. For example, if a single opponent was defeated from an infrasonic attack before it was his turn to act and he did not have any allies nearby to see this happen, then in most cases there would not be enough noise to alert people in adjacent rooms. The exception to this would be if someone with a very high Perception or hearing ability were close enough to be alerted.
Does a nanorocket launcher fire explosive rounds?
No, a nanorocket launcher functions the same as a normal rifle. It gets its name from the fact that it fires rocket propelled bullets, but the shots fired do not explode like grenades do.