No place like home…

You should now have enough information to get some idea of what your character was like in terms of Ability Scores and Specialties at the time you manifested your Primary Mutation(s). Now come up with the backstory of your life up to that point.

What was your character’s life like up until the time of your Primary Mutation (or puberty or whenever you went to Professor X’s school)?


Both the ICONS and FATE systems use Aspects (one of the FATE engine’s more unique concepts).

Rather than explain in detail what Aspects are (which is done better in the ICONS book or at the Fate RPG site: here, here, and especially here) I’m just going to indicate the purpose of creating the Backstory…

It’s to get you at least a couple of your 5 character Aspects! Either Good (Quality) and/or Bad (Challenges). What Aspect(s) of your character’s personality was derived from your backstory? How did the nature of how you grew up and the circumstances deeply affect your character?

The ICONS book gives some sample Qualities as a single “buzz word” … I’m asking for more information that elaborates on that “buzz word” (stuck in parenthesis after the “buzz word”).

  • ICONS book example Qualities (Catchphrase, Connections, Epithet, Identity, Motivation)
  • ICONS book example Challenges (Bad Luck, Enemy, Personal, Social, Weakness)
  • I also provide more at this link (derived from the FATE SRD)

You don’t have to come up with both a Quality and a Challenge, but you can if you wish. Also, Aspects can morph and change over time – just like your character – so don’t worry about getting it “perfect” … just get it “good enough” for this stage of your character’s life.


  • Grew up in suburban America with Hippie-turned-Yuppie parents.
    • Quality = Respectable (People who know her love her ‘Heart of Gold’)
    • Challenge = Personal (Naive idealist dreamer)
  • Grew up with abusive parents and/or in the foster care system.
    • Quality = Motivation (Nobody will be hurt like I was so long as I’m around)
    • Challenge = Shattered (‘Hard-Boiled’ kid that doesn’t know what love is)
  • Grew up a normal kid until one day her hero cop dad was shot before her eyes
    • Quality = Motivation (To become a district attorney to put bad guys away forever)
    • Challenge = Self-Destructive (When not studying Law, becomes a Ecstacy abusing party girl that always finds ‘Mr. Wrong’ to go home with)


Uncanny wolfhound wolfhound