THE BIG NEWS: This month is the our partners, Mongoose Publishing, are almost caught up with the backlog of Squadron Box orders, and have sent all of the orders for ACTASF rulebooks. Their expanded factory, with new equipment and new personnel, is now hard at work starting to produce the long-awaited Starline 2500 Fleet Boxes. These will be officially re-launched to the wholesalers in February.
SHIPPING NEWS: We always hate to hear that either UPS or the US Postal Service
has raised rates. In January, there's a double whammy in that both did.
Unfortunately we do have to pass that on to our customers. While the shipping
rates assume "worst case scenario," if we find we can ship it cheaper, then
we'll refund the difference.
WEBSITE: Our website, www.StarFleetGames.com, continues to grow and improve. You are welcome to send us your requests, comments, and suggestions. Joel Shutts, our graphics director, continues to update the website, do covers for the new
products, shut down pirate websites, help out around the company, and learn more
about the game business. One of our newest pages is for Starline 2500 where we display photos and 3d renders of the new starships.
FACEBOOK: Jean continues to improve our page on Facebook, adding many new photos and other features.
If you haven't seen the 400+ pieces of art in the albums, you should drop by and visit. You don't have to be a member of Facebook to see our page, but if you are, please become our friend so you can get information in your newsfeed.
VIDEOS: StarFleetGames has taken its act to YouTube and we now have a YouTube channel. Our goal is to create a video for the new product releases during each month. We have "In the Box" videos to show you what you will see when you unpack your new game. We have also done "Spotlights" on a single product or product line. So pull up a chair and join us at the movies! Our newest uploads are:
Star Fleet Marines Part 1
Star Fleet Marines Part 2
ADB Late May 2011
STARBLOG: Our StarBlog has moved to a new URL
and all links on StarFleetGames.com websites have been changed to match. The new
The blog covers all aspects of the company.
AMBASSADORS: Jean Sexton has succeeded in recruiting two ambassadors (Michael C. Baker and A. David Merritt) to carry the word of the Star Fleet Universe to other
websites. They (and Jean) were awarded the first ever "Star Fleet
Ambassador Badges" as well as appropriate medals for their service to date.
These ambassadors do not just repeat press releases; they answer questions,
encourage discussion, and help people find the relevant documents on our
website. Contact Jean Sexton if you want to volunteer for ambassador duty.
Have you ever wished you could accessorize your Starline 2500 Federation fleet with your own names and hull numbers? Well now you can!
Tenneshington Decals is pleased to announce that production of custom decals for the Starline 2500 miniatures line has begun. We are currently shipping Federation Squadron Box decal sheets with Fleet Box and individual blisters to follow upon shipment of those products. In the coming months we hope to add custom decals for all the empires of the Star Fleet Universe.
Our decals are printed in high resolution on waterslide transfer paper with the names / hull numbers of your choice. Each sheet comes with decals for the ship name, the hull number, warp engine stripes, secondary hull pennants, and various hatches, access ports, and windows. The Squadron Box sheet covers the five ships in the Squadron Box while the Fleet Box sheet covers all 16 ships in the Fleet Box and even has decals for the 6 shuttlecraft included.
For more information or to download the order sheet, check us out at www.tenneshington.com. Or if you prefer, email Will at: firstname.lastname@example.org or Tony L. Thomas at: email@example.com.
Rated Ace Tournament 38 is looking for players. Judge Peter Bakija has reported
there are more than 32 players and that there are new people joining in. In
addition to the standard prize offered by SFBOL (an extension to the winner's
subscription) Troy Williams has generously offered a new prize. The "Rookie of
RAT Award" will go to a player who is not a Rated Ace who advances to the third
round. (If two or more advance that far, then the one who advances wins. If
there is a tie, then the SFBOL die roller will be used to break it.) If no
players advance who are not Rated Aces, then the prize goes to the second-place
winner. What is that prize? A year's subscription to SFBOL! Peter, thanks for
judging this tournament and Troy, thanks for such a generous award. Deadline to
enter: January 29, 2012.
There's really never a dull period in the tournaments on SFBOL. We have two
current contests and a playtest of a new Andromedan TC. Rated Ace Tournament 37
with judge Kerry Mullen is in the opening stages. Some Round 1 games have been
played (many against BYE who must be the worst SFB player EVER) as well as some
second-round games. Masters 2011 has completed all first-round games. This
challenging format has the winner of a round flying his opponent's ship in the
next round. Andrew J. Koch is the judge for the Masters tournament. Finally, the playtest of the Andromedan TC is being run by Peter Bakija. This initial run has pitted four players flying the Andromedan ship against people flying a Lyran, an Orion (HHgbb), a Gorn, and the WYN Shark (bb). Each Andromedan player will face
each of the various empires.
HAILING FREQUENCIES: This is our newsletter and will let you know all the news for all our games. You can subscribe here. Have you missed an earlier newsletter? Click here to get caught up!
COMMUNIQUE: The latest Communique brings you more Ship Cards, scenarios, and more news from the Star Fleet Universe! It can be downloaded from the Commander's Circle.
COMMANDER'S CIRCLE: We continue to improve the Commander's Circle. All of the ships and scenarios are available as separate documents (the ships are organized by empire) so you can quickly see what is available. The FC Scenario Database and Master Ship Chart documents are also here. Our newest project was suggested by our players and is uploading low-toner Ship Cards. The Commander's Circle is the best place to find free additions to Federation Commander!
The Federation Commander site and Forum continue to grow as more gamers continue to find them. All of our games currently have topics in the Forum. If you have any comments, questions, or requests for our Graphics Director, this is the place to let him know. Come see what the commotion is about and join the Federation Commander Forum now.
We are very pleased to see the medals, honor bars, and ribbons awarded to players being incorporated into their signatures. It is exciting to see lots of interesting conversations about a wide variety of subjects.
Get in on the
While for new players the Federation Commander Forum is a little easier to
manage, the original (Discus-based) BBS is where most product development
takes place. If you have a proposal you'd like to see worked on, don't forget to
make sure it is mentioned here. It also has active F&E and SFB forums where
players run campaigns, Rated Ace tournaments and other SFB tournaments are organized (most FC tournaments are organized on the Forum), SVC's "My
Day" appears, along with current news and strategies dealing with Prime Directive, and each issue of Captain's Log is created. While less colorful
(no avatars or sigs), it is a vital part of ADB, Inc.'s communication.
The revisions to rule (2D4a) provide for a special exception when declaring Evasive Maneuvers on Impulse #8. However, this does not mean you cannot invoke Evasive Maneuvers in the "normal" way on Impulse #8.
For every empire except the Andromedans, this would be silly and no one would do it. However, for the Andromedans, it can actually be useful. So, when you need to burn a few more points of power to make room in the batteries for your power absorber panel power dump, declare Evasive Maneuvers normally on Impulse #8. It will start after the Direct Fire phase, so you can still use your weapons normally on Impulse #8.
Rule (2D4a) says that Evasive Maneuvers are announced at the end of the Defensive Fire Phase. The star says that Evasive Maneuvers do not take place until the end of the Direct Fire Phase. However, since the Direct Fire Phase occurs after the Defensive Fire Phase, this all happens within a single impulse, and the cost applies immediately.
With no seeking weapons, the End of Impulse restrictions are mostly irrelevant. There are some restrictions (e.g., you cannot do this if you have an active tractor), but they are very few. Then, at the end of the turn, Evasive Maneuvers stop and the Andromedan can move normally on the following turn. (Unless, of course, you want to continue Evasive Maneuvers due to the tactical circumstances.)
Therefore, the point of this is to burn the energy cost of six Movement Points at the end of a turn without suffering any appreciable negative effects. You have then evaded away excess power with almost no negative consequences!
(End of FC Tactic of the Month)
SPEED IS DEATH
When flying a mobile fleet faced with a globular web -- such as a Tholian pinwheel or Tholian fleet that has formed a web as you approach -- speed management and timing become the critical factors in victory. The situation I mean to cover here is one where a web has been raised and is being hastily reinforced; if the web is already at high strength, some of this will not apply. You want to move at a speed to threaten the web on the first turn, so you need to cover the distance between your fleet and the web. You don't want to burn up your power on speed while he sits there juicing the web and overloading his guns, only to die because you entered the web too early.
Thus, have a speed plot that lets you enter the web, if you choose to, late in the turn. Careful notice needs to be paid to his web strength; remember if the web is strength twelve or greater, you cannot enter it at a speed higher than twelve without risking a breakdown, however, the ideal here is not to enter the web on the first turn. Instead, you want to enter the web on the second turn, with a maximum deceleration speed plot. Waste no power on speed; you won't need it where you are going, and the power is far better spent on electronic warfare, shield reinforcement, and overloading weapons.
The idea here is to keep the Tholian guessing. You have the ability to hit the web during the first turn, should he do something foolish; but you want to save your power for a maximum effort when you choose to hit it, not waste half of it in a high-speed dash across the map. Position here is also important: try to keep the Tholian guessing by presenting a flank shield to him (reinforced as much as possible), such that you have the option to sideslip or turn into the web. This way, if the Tholian fires phasers late during the first turn, he will hit a flank shield; and you will then turn into the web to present your forward shield to him during the second turn. Tholian web is a powerful defensive weapon; you must make him pay for using it and giving up the tactical initiative.
(SFB Tactic of the Month continues here)
SFG PLUS POWER MODULES EQUALS FUN!
The addition of power modules in Advanced Operations allows the Klingons to make it astronomically expensive to destroy SFG-equipped starbases.
Unfortunately you have to sacrifice a starbase's two PF flotillas (24 combat potential), but you will have no fear in winning the electronic warfare fight versus the Alliance for that sacrifice.
You will have upwards of ten or more electronic warfare points. Here is how: starbase = 6, D6S/D5S = 4/3. Any other single two electronic warfare point ship (PFT, DWS, D6D, etc) = 2. Total: 11+ electronic warfare points.
Having this much electronic warfare available will let you choose a Battle Intensity Rating of four, allowing you to use your SFGs or your large combat potential to their maximum effect against the Alliance. This will probably result in the Alliance player not choosing a battle intensity of four (312.122) himself due to the risk of having key ships frozen, but you will still be able to use your starbase's SFGs defensively.
(End F&E Strategy of the Month)
Throughout the month our graphics director places on the website various cards called Demotivationals. These are like postcards with a image and a phrase that is often used for humor.
These are the Demotivationals for the month of December:
Fire For Effect
To see our previous Demotivationals click here.
Every month we will feature one or more of our miniatures that has been painted by a fan. If you paint miniatures, submit pictures of your minis and they may be selected for the next Mini of the Month!
Fed New Light Cruiser and Strike Cruiser
Communique #73 has been posted to the Commander's Circle.
Captain's Log #44, Stock 5744, $19.95
Star Fleet Battles Module E3: Borak Star League, Stock #7103, $12.00
Booster 31, Stock #4231, $9.95
Booster 32, Stock #4232, $9.95
Booster 33, Stock #4233, $9.95
A Call to Arms: Star Fleet, Stock #30000, $29.99
Starline 2500: Squadron Boxes #1, Stock #30002, $29.99
Starline 2500: Squadron Boxes #2, Stock #30003, $29.99
Starline 2500: Squadron Boxes #9, Stock #30004, $29.99
Starline 2500: Squadron Box #9a, Stock #30005, $39.99
Starline 2500: Federation Fleet Box, Stock #30006, $99.99
Starline 2500: Klingon Fleet Box, Stock #30007, $99.99
Starline 2500: Romulan Fleet Box, Stock #30008, $99.99
To be Released in 2012
Captain's Log #45, Stock #5745, $TBA
Captain's Log #46, Stock #5746, $TBA
Traveller Prime Directive (four or five books)
Federation Admiral, Stock #4080, $TBA
Star Fleet Marines Assault, Stock #2101, $TBA
Starmada: Battleships Armada, TBA
Federation Commander: Reinforcements Attack: TBA
A Call to Arms Star Fleet #2, TBA
Romulan PD20 Modern, TBA
PDF SALES: ADB, Inc. continues its relationship with Steve Jackson Games and their e23 Warehouse. We chose e23 because they have a philosophy that agrees with ours -- our customers are honest and honorable and wouldn't aid people who want to steal our products. Furthermore, we know from experience how devastating a computer crash can be and want our customers to know that they don't have to worry about the loss of their e-products bought through e23. What do we have there? We have created a new page that allows easy access to our PDFs for sale on e23. From here you can see what we currently have posted and have links to those products.
RECENTLY RELEASED ON e23
Module E3 Borak Star League SSD
Module E3 Borak Star League Rules
Module R3 SSD Book
F&E ISC War Rulebook
Captain's Log #18
Captain's Log #17
Star Fleet Battles: Playtest Module E2 - Triangulum Galaxy
Star Fleet Battles: Module R4 SSD book
Captain's Log #16
2011 Star Fleet Battles Basic Set SSD book
Captain's Log #15
Federation Commander LDR Ship card Pack #1
RECENTLY RELEASED ON DRIVE THRU RPG
Prime Directive PD20M
Klingons PD20 Modern
Federation PD20 Modern
FC: Border Box #10, SKU 4410, $99.95
Federation LTT, SKU 0238, $9.95
Federation Old CA, SKU 0239, $8.95
Tholian TK5, SKU 0717, $7.95
He stepped through the armored hatch and stopped in shock. The bodies had been removed, but other than that, everything seemed to be as it was six days ago. The gunner on duty, one Kavesh recognized from the forward compartment, turned to see who had just entered and snapped to his feet.
"Lieutenant, I didn't know you were out of sickbay!"
"Neither does the doctor," Kavesh replied dismissively. "Where's the duty tech?"
A familiar orange head popped up from behind the command panel. "So nice to see you up and around, Sir. Just trying to make a few repairs."
"Repair work is for the work watch, technician. While we are on duty watch, you are supposed to monitor your panels," Kavesh scolded.
"Uh yes, Sir. We've only got two shifts, each with two personnel. The technician from the other shift is borrowed from another battery, and works on their equipment during his work watch. Engineering has no repair technicians available at this time. I estimated that we'd save time if I worked on watch while the gunner monitored both panels, Sir."
"Ordinarily, you'd be wrong; but considering the circumstances," he said, gesturing around the empty room, "it could be considered necessary." He studied them again, noticing signs of fatigue in both. "Who here has gone the longest without sleep?"
The gunner pointed quickly at the technician. "Over eighteen hours for him, Sir."
"Very well. I am a qualified technician, of course. Not as efficient as you, perhaps, but good enough. Go, get some rest, return refreshed in six hours."
"Sir, is that appropriate? You are an officer, a wounded one at thatŠ Your dedication is admirable, but perhaps you should rest?"
"I am not in the habit of giving orders twice, technician. Such as the order I gave you to practice on close combat in your next off shift," Kavesh said by way of reply, and the technician beat a hasty retreat into the passage.
Kavesh winced in pain as he slid underneath the panels, he could feel at least one of the wounds threatening to reopen. He had only been below a few minutes when he heard the hatch open.
"What is the status of this compartment, Gunner? I heard that slimy cur of a battery lieutenant was out of sickbay," a familiar voice snarled, "I figured his sense of 'duty' would have him here first, but perhaps I was wrong."
"Here I am, Kelar," he said, rolling his eyes at the other's sense of drama and beginning the process of extricating himself. Kelar was waiting for him.
(Continue reading here)
by Mike Filsinger
William J. Gauthier asks: In the XP-Refit rules, (XR3.12) is described as an exception to (XR3.1). Does this mean that I can have paired phaser-3s converted to phaser-1Xs in addition to phaser-1s and phaser-2s converted to phaser-1Xs, or does this mean in converting the paired phaser-3s to phaser-1Xs, I have to leave some of the pre-existing phaser-1s un-upgraded. For example, if I wanted to do an XP refit of a Romulan Heavy Condor, and give it the maximum phaser upgrade, would I end up with thirteen phaser-1Xs, or eleven phaser-1Xs and two phaser-1s?
ANSWER: You are misreading the rule somewhat.
What it is saying is that a ship cannot have more phaser-1Xs than the base hull would have. So you can convert all of the phaser-1s on your Heavy Condor to phaser-1Xs, and convert each of the two sets of paired phaser-3s to a single phaser-1X. The Condor is not a "base hull" for the Heavy Condor in this instance, no more than a D5 is the base hull for a D5W NCA.
Trent Telenko asks a follow-up question: "The Condor is not a 'base hull' for the Heavy Condor..."
Testing this example further, would a DWL (leader version of a D5W) be its own base hull as well? Would a D5L be its own "base hull" and not a D5? Would a "fast" version of a CW, CA, or NCA all be "base hulls" for the purposes of X1R?
ANSWER: The phaser-3 problem does not crop up on the D5L or D5C, i.e., while the ship had extra wing phasers and is allowed to upgrade them (the advantage of being a leader) it does not have more phaser-3s to upgrade than the base hull.
Please note that the rule in question is dealing with upgrading the phaser-3s. A D5C or D5L has the same four as a normal D5, and upgrades those based on the rule.
The DWL, on the other hand, has two single phaser-3s (just like the D5W), and would not be able to upgrade them (they are not paired phaser-3s) but could upgrade the two phaser-1s in the back to phaser-1Xs. It could NOT, of course, upgrade the phaser-3s to phaser-3Xs (or to any other X-phaser type).
Trent Telenko asks: Are CWFs (fast CW hulls) considered "wartime construction" for the purposes of upgrading their heavy weapons (i.e., you cannot upgrade them) or are they "fast ships" with the reinforced hull required for X-type heavy weapons?
ANSWER: I have checked, and there is nothing in the ship descriptions for the fast war cruisers in Module R11 that excuses them from being simply "fast war cruisers". So, no, you do not get to upgrade their heavy weapons.
Dale McKee asks: Rule (XR4.25) (Module X1R) states the plasma-Ls can use the carronade. This is the general rule. However, rule (FP14.14) in Module R10 states the Inter-Stellar Concordium never gained access to carronade technology. This is a specific rule. Does this mean that an Inter-Stellar Concordium ship with XP refits (giving it plasma-L torpedoes in lieu of plasma-F torpedoes in this case) does not get the carronade?
ANSWER: The X rules are their own rules set and create their own exceptions to existing rules. All X-ships with plasma-L torpedoes can use carronades, just as disruptor-armed Kzinti and Tholian X-ships can access UIMs as an exception to (D6.56).
(End of Ask Growler. )
COMBAT: THE CRUCIBLE OF VICTORY
Q: I sent a ship to attack an Orion Pirate raider that was interfering in one of my hexes. The enemy sent a reserve fleet to the "Battle Hex", destroying my ship before it could fight the Orion. Can he do this? What happens to the Orion?
A: Well, by (504.35), battles with Orions are part of the Sequence of Play, so he can do it, as long as he is at war with you and able to send ships to the Battle Hex. Once the battle is resolved, the remaining ship could either retreat out of the hex or fight the Orion.
Q: We do not understand how to handle crippled ships in a capital assault. What happens to a ship crippled during the battle?
A: Step #3 in a capital assault (511.53) is done only once, to divide up the non-crippled ships. Any crippled ships at the start go into the static forces, as do any ships crippled during the battle.
Q: Exactly when is a planet considered captured? Is it immediately upon satisfying the conditions of (508.22) or only after the entire Combat Phase is over? I'd say "immediately" because the rules do not have any provisos (e.g., "wait until the end of combat.") Here is why this is important: The Coalition attacks Kzinti SB 0902, planet 1001, and all border BATS. During the Combat Phase the Coalition "captures" planet 1001 first and then destroys all border BATS except for 0701, and then elects to resolve 0902 (which also has a defending Kzinti fleet) before 0701. After a brutal battle, the Kzintis retreat from 0902. If 1001 stops being a Kzinti supply point immediately upon capture, then the Kzinti must retreat to 0801. If 1001 stops being a Kzinti supply point only at the end of the Combat Phase, then the Kzinti fleet at 0902 must retreat to 1001 (assuming the Kzintis are not outnumbered at 1001).
A: The planet ceases being in the control of the previous owner at the instant when there are no units belonging to that player in the hex and the capturing player has sufficient units to capture (or liberate) the planet in the hex. This is why it is important to select of the order in which you do resolution battles during the battle resolution in Phase 5.
(F&E Q&A continues here )
Q: What can you tell me about Romulans PD20M? You've been working on it forever!
A: Well, two years is a long time, but we decided to get the entirely new
Federation sourcebooks out first. Due out in March, Romulans PD20M does add
three entirely new species and two new classes (one advanced and one prestige)
to PD20M. It has new creatures that reveal some of the historicla reasons behind
the Romulan ship art. There are new characters who can be found on a ground
stations and/or its orbital station. Whether you are traders making your fortune
traveling between the Federation and the Romulan Empire or a Romulan group
trying to win power in the Senate, the book gives you the information you need
as a player or GM.
Send questions to Jean at design@StarFleetGames.com and SVC will decide which one Jean will answer next.
(End of Ask Aunt Jean )
In this section we will provide links to various web pages and items that we think you will find "cool".
Here are links to the new pages of Starline 2500 miniatures pictures.
Starline 2500 Federation Miniatures
Starline 2500 Klingon Miniatures
Starline 2500 Romulan Miniatures
Star Fleet Command
Traveller Prime Directive
Call to Arms Star Fleet
We have also uploaded new Xander wallpapers to our Wallpapers section on the website.
We have new images of our next game Star Fleet Marines posted on our BBS topic page.
These are the press releases we send to the wholesalers, retailers, and media. You can get on the mailing list for them by asking Marketing@StarFleetGames.com to add you to the list. (Obviously, they are free.) They are uploaded to the Star Fleet Alert page
Alert 111129 CL44 (Adobe Reader Required)
Alert 110830 OMRB (Adobe Reader Required)
Alert 110615 Mongoose (Adobe Reader Required)
Alert 110504 GURPS Fed & C3A (Adobe Reader Required)
Alert 110221 Schedule (Adobe Reader Required)
Alert 101231 New Year (Adobe Reader Required)
Alert 101026 Fight For A Cure (Adobe Reader Required)
Alert 101019 Video (Adobe Reader Required)
Alert 100928 Mod Y3 Release (Adobe Reader Required)
Starline 2500 Federation Battleship