Investigate Stunts


  • Eavesdropper. On a successful Investigate roll to create an advantage by eavesdropping on a conversation, you can discover or create one additional aspect (though this doesn’t give you an extra free invocation). (Fate Core, p.113)

  • Eye for Detail. (requires Scene of the Crime.) Your visual memory is so strong that with a little concentration, you can revisit any place you’ve been to in your memory in exacting detail. Sometimes, you can even pick up on details that you hadn’t consciously realized before. To use this ability, spend a fate point and make a single perception-based roll (usually Investigate, but not necessarily limited to that) to find things out as if you were still in the location, no matter how long ago you left it. (adapted from Spirit of the Century SRD, v6.17.1)

  • Focused Senses. You are skilled at concentrating on one of your senses to the exclusion of all others. The sense must be specified at the time this stunt is taken. As a free action, you may gain the Focused on My Senses aspect. So long as this aspect remains, for as long as you use nothing but Investigate, all Investigate actions you take that use the specified sense gain a +2 bonus. However, your opponents may invoke the aspect against you once for free. Rolling a skill other than Investigate removes the aspect. (This stunt may be taken multiple times, each time for a single sense. If you have specified multiple senses, your focus may cover all of them at once.) (adapted from Spirit of the Century SRD, v6.17.2)

  • Impossible Detail. (requires Focused Senses.) When paying attention, your senses operate at a profound level of focus, allowing you to pick up on details that, very simply, no one else easily or even possibly could. With this stunt, you face no increased difficulties due to a physical detail being too small or subtle. (adapted from Spirit of the Century SRD, v6.17.2)

  • Scene of the Crime. You have a strong visual memory, and whenever you revisit a place where you have used Investigate before, it takes a matter of seconds for you to use Investigate to determine what has changed since you were last there. (adapted from Spirit of the Century SRD, v6.17.1)

Specific Targets

  • De-Bugger. +2 to overcome with Investigate when you sweep a room for surveillance devices. (Peter Blake)

  • Game Hunter’s Nose. Choose a type of animal. You gain +2 to create advantage or overcome with Investigate when you search for or track that kind of animal. (Peter Blake)

  • Hit the Books. +2 to overcome or create advantage with Investigate when you seek or consult textual sources. (Peter Blake)

  • Internal Affairs. +2 to overcome or create advantage with Investigate when on the trail of corruption. (Peter Blake)

  • Plague Hunter. +2 to Investigate when you seek people with a highly infectious disease. (Peter Blake)

  • Relic Hunter. +2 to Investigate when you seek artefacts from ancient civilizations. (Peter Blake)

  • Tracker. +2 to Investigate rolls made to analyse or follow a person or creature’s physical trail. (Peter Blake)


  • The Pieces of the Puzzle. When you take a few minutes to study a particular item and its position, you can reasonably reconstruct the chain of events that led to it being there. This reconstruction will be accurate, though it will not reveal any more than the necessary details. For example, it might reveal that it was carried by hand at some point, but not by whom. (Fate System Toolkit, p.93)

  • The Power of Deduction. Once per scene you can spend a fate point (and a few minutes of observation) to make a special Investigate roll representing your potent deductive faculties. For each shift you make on this roll you discover or create an aspect, on either the scene or the target of your observations, though you may only invoke one of them for free. (Fate Core, p.113)

  • Uncanny Hunch. (requires one other Investigate stunt and one Empathy stunt.) Sometimes your guesses play out to great advantage. Once per scene, you may make a guess about what the "deal" is with a particular character, object, location, or situation. Do not speak this guess aloud; write it down on a piece of paper and give it to the GM. The GM must accept it as a valid hunch that would be something of a revelation if true (i.e., no "I’m convinced that moon orbits the Earth!" - that’s too obvious). If, at some later point, your hunch proves to be correct, you may use your Investigate or Empathy skill instead of any other skill, where that target is concerned, for one exchange. (A savvy GM will occasionally alter her characters' motives to match your hunches; if she does, that’s absolutely perfect!) (adapted from Spirit of the Century SRD, v6.17.1)

New Actions

  • Attention to Detail. You can use Investigate instead of Empathy to defend against Deceive attempts. What others discover through gut reactions and intuition, you learn through careful observation of microexpressions. (Fate Core, p.113)

  • Going Undercover. Sometimes looking like someone else is just part of a detective’s job. You may use Investigate in place of Deceive to create and maintain disguises or cover identities. (adapted from

  • I Will Find Out What I Want To Know. There’s not much point being able to get information from a crime scene if you can’t get information from a person. You may use Investigate in place of Provoke to interrogate a suspect.

  • Investigative Reporter. Your writing style depends more upon good research than anything else. You may use Investigate instead of Provoke or Rapport for journalism. (adapted from

  • Lip Reader. You may use Investigate to eavesdrop on conversations you can only see. If the GM would normally allow someone to attempt to read lips, you gain +2 to the roll; otherwise, you may simply roll Investigate when others may not. (adapted from Spirit of the Century SRD, v6.17.2)

  • Look Behind You. Following a suspect is easy; doing it without their knowledge is the trick, and you’ve got that trick down. You may use Investigate in place of Stealth when shadowing a "person of interest". (adapted from

  • Reading Suspects. Part of being a good detective is knowing "whodunit" long before anything can be proved. You may use Investigate in place of Empathy when you have at least one piece of evidence indicating that your target is a suspect in your current case. (adapted from

  • They Don’t Deserve the Truth. You may use Investigate in place of Deceive to lie to about a case. (adapted from


  • Quick Eye. You are able to investigate a location much more quickly than others, while still being very thorough. All Investigate efforts you make happen one to two time increments faster than usual, allowing you to make one or two additional rolls in the same amount of time, or simply conclude your investigation faster than you would otherwise. (adapted from Spirit of the Century SRD, v6.17.2)