There are 2 ways to gain and use aspects:
- proactive method
- reactive method
About the Proactive Method
The proactive method is preferred because of the 7 ‘P’s ideology (Proper Previous Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance), although it is much more difficult to take advantage of.
Shareable – Also, with the proactive method, their invocations of aspects may be shared too if it makes sense within the narrative of the scene.
How to Use
Use the Create Advantage action, which usually requires a skill check, to generate invocations of an aspect. A success gains 1 use and a success with style grants 2 uses. See Create Advantage Examples section for examples
About the Reactive Method
The reactive method, which is the easiest to use, is NOT preferred because it does uses a finite and valuable resource – the Fate Point.
How to Use
Use a Fate Point to invoke an aspect so you can use it.
Create Advantage Invocation Examples
Positive Personal Aspect Invocation
Say you are THE FASTEST GUN IN THE WEST. You’re pinned down by bandits and out of Fate points. You want to take advantage of your aspect to make every shot count. You pitch to your GM “my gunslinger speaks a silent prayer, gripping his two trusty six shooters and steels himself for the quickest sixty seconds of his life…” and declare you’re rolling to create advantage on THE FASTEST GUN IN THE WEST.
Your GM likes your flair, sets a difficulty of Great (+4) given the circumstances (“it’s hard to steady yourself when bullets are whizzing by your ear”) and you’re rolling with your Will (or Careful if you’re using approaches), lets say. You roll, succeed, and get a free invoke on the aspect! The next exchange come, you make it through unscathed thanks to your cover, and you come out firing!
Now, one could argue what is more useful in the above scenario, an attack or a create advantage, and that depends on how your GM has organized the bandits (are they three separate baddies or are they a single mob). But that is just one scenario where something like this could come into play.
Negative Personal Aspect Invocation
Your cowboy rolls up to the bar, a veteran of a meaningless war where many innocents died. His Trouble is KEEPS THE PAST IN THE BONEYARD. You’re in a bar playing cards, and one of the sharks at the table keeps poking at events from the war, talking about all the good killing. You or your GM could say that this is a compel worthy moment, but you decide to approach it another way: “my cowboy balls up his fist under the table, pushing all the hurt and shame from the war into it” and you roll to create advantage on the Trouble.
The GM agrees with your action “your greatest pain, in this moment, is becoming a great strength” and sets the difficulty at Average (+1) (“the card shark is egging you on, bringing those wretched memories to the surface”). You succeed with style, generating to free invokes!
After another ribbing from the card shark and raised ante, your turn comes up again and you declare “like a wave of fury, my cowboy tosses his cards on the table and decks the bastard”. Since you have two free invokes, this should be quick interlude between hands…
Organizational Membership Invocation
DISCIPLE OF THE SHROUD sounds like some kind of ninja. Say you’re trying to avoid the questions of a tenacious reporter looking into a seemingly invisible crime wave throughout the society. Say the GM is running this as a Contest, bit of social repartee. You’re already down 1-0 and you decide you want to make use of your air of mystery to help rebuff the reporter and win the contest. You roll a create advantage to generate an extra invoke, hopefully putting you over the edge.
As a member of the BROTHERHOOD OF THE BLIGHT you want to spread pestilence to the land of some particularly ornery gnomes. For your ritual to work, you need to draw deep from your already depleted reserves. You decide to generate a free invoke on your character aspect as you aren’t under pressure and it fits with the action you want to take. The GM agrees, and you paint the image of living sick being forced from your body to form a ritual circle. You roll well, get your invoke, and prepare to reel havoc on the pesky gnomes…