Star Fleet Universe News
The BIG NEWS this month is (and sad news it is) the transfer of our company watchdog Markie to the black fleet. After a short and tragic illness, Markie was found to have an incurable condition. We all miss him, even if he barked at everyone and bit Steve Cole a few times.
We have recruited a new watchdog, Wolf, who is five pounds of loveable fur. Wolf is not afraid of anything, but he loves everyone he meets, even those without dog treats. Like Markie, he is a rescue dog from the Amarillo SPCA and lives with Jean Sexton when not on duty.
FACEBOOK: Jean continues to improve our page on Facebook, adding many new photos and other features.
TWITTER: ADB has recently started a Twitter feed. We are ADBInc_Amarillo. You'll find news as well as links to pictures. Check us out and retweet news of interest to your own followers. We're excited and our first goal is to get 100 followers. Help us reach that, please.
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:
STARBLOG: Our StarBlog has moved to a new URL
and all links on StarFleetGames.com websites have been changed to match. The new
Custom Decals for Starline ships
Tenneshington Decals is proud to now offer three new decals sets, made to fit the Starline 2500 Federation BB battleship, CB heavy command cruiser, and DNL light raiding dreadnought miniatures.
Rated Ace Tournament #42 is well started. Three-quarters of the first round games have been played and three of the second round games have been played. Bill Schoeller is the judge for this tournament.
NetKill Patrol first quarter is in its second month on SFBOL. Richard Schirmer maintains the statistics that make this tournament possible.
The Platinum Hat 2013 International Online SFB Tournament has replaced a third round player who had to drop out. Everything is waiting on that third-round game. Paul Scott is the judge.The Masters 2013 Tournament is well underway. This challenging tournament has the winner of each match take his opponent's ship to fly in the next match. Only one third-round game is left to be played. The judge is Andrew Koch.
DEMOS AND CONS WITH SFU GAMES
MISCON's Sanctioned Tournament for SFB with miniatures will be held on Sunday May 25, and Monday May 26, 2014 and will accommodate 16 players. The all Miniatures Sanctioned Tournament will start on Sunday, at 10:00 am and run for 10 hours, with up to three elimination games. The finals will start 10:00 am, Monday, and run up to 6 hours if necessary. This will be a single elimination tournament, and wild cards will only be used if necessary to fill a bracket, if players do not wish to continue, even if winning. Judge Harlan Haskell will have all necessary materials, and miniatures for each player, during the tournament.
Games are held in Spokane, Washington on an irregular basis. Contact them to see if there's a game scheduled. They meet at The Gamers Haven, 2114 N. Pines St., Suites 1 & 2, Spokane Valley, WA 99206, (509) 443-5992 http://www.thegamershaven.net/gamers_haven.php
Do you want to run demos and promote SFU games? Consider becoming a Ranger! You have the advantage of"growing your own" opponents and of making new friends. Read more about it here: http://www.starfleetgames.com/rangers/index.shtml
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.
FC Forum Recent Posts
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 activity!
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 communications.
F&E Strategy of the Month
While rule (308.3) details the conditions under which an attacker can win an approach battle, attackers should be mindful that proceeding straight to the fixed defenses after winning an approach round is not always desirable.
By offering further approach rounds even after satisfying the conditions to proceed to the fixed location, an attacker opens up the possibility of devaluing an opponent's fixed defenses. In short, you give yourself an opportunity to inflict more damage on key units of the defending fleet before fixed defenses can ever play a role in the combat.
So next time you are attacking a fixed position, consider if you would be better off getting straight to your target or continuing to approach and giving your opponent a chance to cheapen the value of his defense.
A Call To Arms: Star Fleet Tactic of the Month
SHOOT THE REDSHIRT FIRST
Players will often have a small ship use Intensify Defensive Fire! to protect a larger, more valuable ship. It may be better to launch drones at the smaller ship than the larger one.
The larger ship is far harder to kill. It will have all of its own defenses, plus some of the smaller ship's phasers, while the smaller ship will have only its own defenses. This will make the smaller "redshirt" ship a better target for your drones. Once it is gone, it's easier to attack the big ship.
Alternatively, blow up the smaller ship with direct-fire weapons before it can fire to defend the larger ship. This is not ideal, because it means your preferred target is not being damaged, but it is better than attacking directly into the strongest defense and probably causing less overall damage to the enemy force.
(End of A Call to Arms: Star Fleet Tactic of the Month)
Throughout the month our graphics director places on the website various cards called Demotivationals. These are like postcards with an image and a phrase that is often used for humor.
To see our previous Demotivationals click here.
Mini of the Month
Click here to see our previous issues of Hailing Frequencies.
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 Warehouse 23 (e23 been joined with and is now known as Warehouse 23. The website is down for maintenance but should be working again soon.)
"Captain, Special Team One here. Unknown One is back on scanners at three hundred twenty thousand kilometers. It is putting out 300% of normal maximum scanning ECCM and generating data links to the frigates. We are now designating this as a light cruiser class scout or survey ship. Sensor data seems to indicate the structures we thought were shuttle balconies are phased array antennae. They are directly in our track. We suspect they are analyzing our engine emissions and ion trail. They have launched what we judge to be probe drones onto our ion trail."
"Drop a mine now set for frigate and larger targets. Unknown One can pay for sniffing our footsteps. Navigation, mark this mine on your plot so we don't ram it if Unknown One misses it and we have to maneuver while we wait for the vortex."
"Captain, Astrophysics here. Spectral fingerprint of Vampire Seven appears to indicate it was equipped with a high output antimatter lithium titanium trioxide warhead. Other warheads showed reasonably normal output spectra for conventional nuclear warheads."
"Auxiliary Con to Bridge. Vortex ahead at 170,000 kilometers, warp 2.15 course 21.07 mark 3. No sign of Thiefbreaker. Thiefbreaker is now overdue, or it was not transported. Unknown Three and Unknown Four are closing. They are about ten thousand kilometers apart. Range ninety thousand kilometers off our number three shield."
"Helm, slow to warp 2.2 and turn around when we approach the vortex. I want the science teams to get all the data they can. As soon as the vortex is confirmed in the collecting phase, we will be entering. Power to the disruptors. Overload all disruptors."
"Unknown Three and Unknown Four firing at seventy thousand kilometers. Delta maser batteries appear to be fairly ineffective. The frigates' weapon ports and arcs are being added to our plot. The fire mostly was blocked by reinforcement, but all reinforcement is now down. Heavy power buildup in what we think is Unknown Four's heavy weapon mount. Unknown Four firing heavy weapon."
WHAM! Doomward rocked with a rattle.
Randy Blair asks: A King Eagle launches a shotgunned plasma-R torpedo and the following targets are available: Federation heavy cruiser, ground-based defense phaser-4, small fighter ground base, defense satellite, and the planet's surface itself. Are those all acceptable targets for the shotgun load? Rule (FP7.22) does not seem to give any restrictions on the target types.
ANSWER: The only restriction is that each torpedo must be launched at a different target. As long as you are within five hexes of the planet so you can target the ground installations and can launch at the defense satellite under its targeting rules, you would be able to select those five targets.
Troy Latta asks: We would like to confirm rule (FQ1.563). Should that really be ECM or is it ECCM?
ANSWER: Per the after action report in Captain's Log #29, the quantum wave torpedo indeed has three points of ECM.
Mike Johnson asks: Does the Tournament King Eagle's plasma-R torpedo have any launching restrictions? I seem to remember hearing that it could track any target in the FA arc, but had to actually launch in the same direction as the ship. I guess the question is whether the plasma-R torpedo launcher is fixed as per (FP3.11).
ANSWER: By (FP3.11), the torpedo must be launched straight ahead, as it is not a swivel launcher (only bases and advanced technology ships have swivel launchers for their plasma-R torpedoes).
Josh Driscol asks: A WYN auxiliary tournament cruiser (with two B-racks and two plasma-F torpedoes in its option package) had six drones on the map, and launched both plasma-Fs. It was my understanding that you had to control the plasma at the time of launch, but my opponent argued that he could immediately release control involuntarily.
ANSWER: The launch was illegal. In order to launch a plasma torpedo, you must have an available control channel on the impulse of launch. The WYN player would have needed to first drop control of two drones to launch the two plasma torpedoes.
Now, he could have managed to get all eight seeking weapons on the board by doing something like this: Launch two plasma torpedoes and four drones on one impulse. On the following impulse, release the plasma torpedoes to their own tracking, and then launch two more drones. Or, with five drones on the board, launch a single plasma torpedo on one impulse, and launch the other one the following impulse, after releasing the first one. But with six drones on the board, he cannot launch his plasma torpedoes without dropping control of at least one of them.
Brendan Lally asks: If I have six drones in flight in my modified WYN auxiliary tournament cruiser can I launch two plasma-F torpedoes from a range greater than five (like a passive launch) without having to use control channels?
ANSWER: Nice try, but no, see rule (D19.224).(End of Admiral Vanaxilth)
Lieutenant Kilgore asks: I blew up the Gorn ship before it launched its plasma torpedo. Can it still launch it?
STASIS FIELD GENERATORS
Q: If I want to use directed damage on a carrier group, how does that interact with SFGs freezing some of the ships in the group (312.271)?
A: Only the smallest escort can be frozen, and, if it is placed in stasis, it is not considered part of the group anymore. The rest of the group could then be targeted by your one directed damage attack if you choose to not used directed damage on the frozen ships.
Q: You are only allowed to target the outermost escort with an SFG (312.271), so are you generally hoping for random choices to get the rest?
A: Correct. Only the ships selected for the random roll can be frozen. Only the smallest ship in a group can be selected by the attacker, and then the defender chooses his ships by selecting any unselected ships including but not limited to the next smallest ships in the group that were not selected.
Q: New sector bases were added to the game, but not to the SFG rules charts. What table would a sector base with a single SFG (452.11) use? (The rule limits sector bases to one SFG.)
A: A sector base with the one allowed SFG would use the SBA (starbase) tables. It would use SBA-1, -2, or -3 depending on the number of targets but cannot use SBA-4 because no unit with only one SFG can use that.
(End of F&E Q&A)
ASK AUNT JEAN
Q: Dear Aunt Jean,
On a Federation starship, who gets picked first to go on a dangerous mission to a planet? Members of the bridge crew or someone else?
A: According to Steven Petrick, Fralli on starship crews are always the first pick for this duty. First, nobody cares if you lose them or "accidentally" leave them behind. Second, few planetary predators will eat a Fralli.
No, really, in the Star Fleet Universe, there are people that are trained to handle difficult situations. The group chosen for the mission is typically called the "away team." Typically the bridge crew is far too highly trained and essential to send down to be eaten by the Hfhadjlyu with its many-tentacled mouth and thousands of teeth lining its gullet. Many gaming groups run two sets of characters -- one set that deals with "safe" situations and the other that goes into danger.
Send questions to Jean at design@StarFleetGames.com and SVC will decide which one Jean will answer next.
(End of Ask Aunt Jean )
Cool Stuff on the Website
In this section we will provide links to various web pages and items that we think you will find "cool".
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.
STAR FLEET ALERTS
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
Suppose you are moving at Baseline Speed 24, but only want to move two hexes. This could be to avoid overload range against a Federation ship, gain a Range 1 shot on a drone wave, etc. The most obvious method is to decelerate, but this costs energy. So how can you do this, without using energy? By using sideslips.
On your first move, sideslip. It does not matter which direction. For this example, we will sideslip left. Next move straight, and then sideslip right. The hex you end up in is two hexes from your starting point. You have managed to end up exactly where you would have if you had decelerated, added three hexes to satisfying your turn mode count, but you have not used any energy. You can now use that energy for something else.
So go tease that Federation cruiser by maneuvering to Range 9 without using energy for a deceleration. His overloaded photons won't even get a chance to fire before your disruptors penetrate his shield and knock one of them out.
(End of FC Tactic of the Month)
SFB Tactic of the Month
- Lieutenant Commander Peter Bakija, USS New York
Mæsron tachyon missiles are rarely used as Alpha Octant drones are in an anchor attack (where the captain of the drone armed ship tractors his target and launches drones from Range 1 as his opponent cannot get away or use a wild weasel). This is due to the four-impulse delay that tachyon missiles have before they can detonate after launch (OFD1.331).
Rather than avoiding a Range-1 anchor and missile launch, the Mæsron captain should consider using the four-impulse delay to his advantage.
If a tachyon missile enters the hex of its target before that delay is over, it adopts an evasion plot until the delay clears, at which point it begins seeking its target again (OFD1.321). As a result, a Mæsron captain can tractor an opponent, launch tachyon missiles from Range 1, and have them fly over his target. Through judicious use of turns and the missiles' High Energy Turns, the missiles can strike non-facing, possibly down shields on the target.
Granted, most Mæsron ships cannot launch more than one or two tachyon missiles at a time, and the four-impulse delay gives a targeted ship ample time to deal with the tachyon missile, but under the appropriate circumstances, a Mæsron captain can boomerang his missiles to victory.
(End of SFB Tactic of the Month)
Federation cruiser and Romulan War Eagle duke it out in a game of SFB at Questing Knight Games.