Star Fleet Universe News
THE BIG NEWS this month is the scheduled release of Reinforcements Attack in the next few weeks. Also to be released then will be Boosters 34, 35, 36, as well as the Nova Edition of Distant Armada and Alien Armada, along with both Nova and Admiral editions of Battleships Armada.
In other news this month, The second annual Platinum Hat International Online SFB tournament is moving past the second round. More information is below in the tournament section, but you can always find the most up-to-date information on the BBS: http://www.starfleetgames.com/discus/.
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.
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 recently added a new decal set product, designed to work with the Starline 2500 Squadron Box #7 (Federation Reinforcements). This is in addition to their existing products, associated to the Squadron Box #1 and Federation Fleet Box.
They have just released a new sheet of "windows" which can be used to detail any ship.
Rated Ace Tournament 38 has just one of the fourth-round games to be
completed. There's the possibility of a Kzinti civil war in Round 5! Ken Lin in
his Klingon ship is waiting for his opponent in Round 6. Judge Peter Bakija
certainly is keeping this one moving along. Good luck everyone!
NetKill Patrol is over for the second quarter of 2012. Brendan Lally defeated
Josh Driscol and earned the title of Cyber_Squire. Richard Sherman maintains
the statistics that makes this possible.
DEMOS AND CONS WITH SFU GAMES
Please send information to Jean via the email in her BBS profile, PM on the Mongoose or Federation Commander forums, or Message on Facebook. If you want convention support, please contact Mike Sparks at support@StarFleetGames.com. Your convention must meet a few simple requirements (one of which is being held in the United States due to shipping costs) which are here: http://www.starfleetgames.com/sfb/tournament/tourn_main.shtml
Council of Five Nations has wound up. There were 25 SFB players in attendance. The final game will be between Steve McCann flying a 11g1 WYN and Peter Bakija flying a Gorn. They'll be playing it on SFBOL, so keep your eyes peeled! Ken Kazinski is the judge.
GameCon Memphis VI was held September 28-30 in Memphis, Tennessee. We hope to have a report on the ACTASF games soon.
Derby World Wargames Show was held on October 6-7, 2012. Day one saw the Romulans lose to the Klingons. The folks there managed to get in nine demos of ACTASF in the first day with lots of positive feedback. Well done, gentlemen!
Fall-In will be held November 3, 2012 in Lancaster Pennsylvania. A two-part ACTA:SF scenario will be run by Bill Stec. Times are 1:00 pm-5:00 pm (part 1), and 6:00 pm-10:00 pm-ish (part 2). Part 1 is planned to be less intense as the Feds try to evade the Klingons on the way to raiding a Klingon research center. Part 2 focuses on the actual raid on the research center and should be fairly bloody. See here for more info:
Games and demos are being run in Spokane, Washington. They meet every Thursday (may move to Friday) at 2:00 pm and play till 9:00 pm, games open to start every time. You can find them at The Gamers Haven, 2114 N. Pines St, Suites 1 & 2, Spokane Valley, WA 99206, (509) 443-5992
Nashcon 2013 will be held May 24-25, 2013 at Cool Springs / Franklin Embassy Suites. Tony L. Thomas will be running the latest revision of The Battle For Khâ€™rtis Rock – a massive scenario involving over 60 Federatioon and Klingon ships (with a battle station and some civilian units through in case 60 ships isnâ€™t a large enough number!).In addition, a three round ACTASF tournament will be played on Saturday 25. Contact Tony (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions concerning this event
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
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
Starline 2500 Klingon C8
Captain's Log #45, Stock #5745, $24.95, 144 pages!
Klingon Armada Nova Edition, Stock #6101N, $16.95
Romulan Armada Nova Edition, Stock #6102N, $16.95
Star Fleet Marines Assault, Stock #2101, $34.95
Starmada Nova Edition rulebook, Stock #6120N, $16.95
Starline 2500 Romulan Fleet Box, Stock #30008, $149.99 (JV-Mongoose)
Starline 2500 Squadron Box 6 Kzintis, Stock #30010, $29.99 (JV-Mongoose)
To be released during Fall 2012
A Call to Arms: Star Fleet Reference Cards, Stock #30001, $14.99
Alien Armada Nova Edition, Stock #6103, $16.95
Distant Armada Nova Edition, Stock #6104, $16.95 .
Federation Commander: Reinforcements Attack, Stock # 4110, $29.95
Starmada: Battleship Armada, Stock #6105, $16.95
To be released during November 2012
Traveller Prime Directive Core Rulebook, TBA
Federation Commander Booster Pack 34 Escorts, Stock #4234, $9.95
Federation Commander Booster Pack 35 Cops & Raiders, Stock #4235, $9.95
Federation Commander Booster Pack 36 Heavies, Stock #4236, $9.95
To be released in 2013
Tribbles vs Klingons.
Captain's Log #46, Stock #5746, $TBA (January)
To be released during 2013
A Call to Arms Star Fleet #2,
BattleFleets, TBA (JV-Mongoose)
Federation Admiral, Stock #4080, $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
Star Fleet Fiction
The flotilla of gunboats had found their prey. A Seltorian frigate had taken up picket duty for the Seltorian area control ship and the Guardian's battle staff had decided that it needed to be destroyed or forced away from their line of approach. With it safely out of the way, they should have just enough time to sneak in and launch a massive strike against the carrier group before the Seltorians re-established their picket line.
A picket's job was to screen against an enemy approach, and to warn the forces behind it of incoming strike forces. It was supposed to blunt the force of enemy thrusts if possible, and escape before being destroyed. It was not glamorous work. It was a dangerous and lonely duty that had seen the Tholians and Seltorians lose many ships and many lives in their internecine warfare. Today was no different for the Seltorian frigate. It fought bravely, but after taking heavy damage, its commander elected to leave the field of battle to the victorious Tholians, rather than suffer the inevitable loss of his ship and crew.
The patrol boat settled into place to wait. Throughout the ship, Tholians bobbed up and down in the zero-gravity, restrained only by the web mesh of their acceleration harnesses and the instinctive use of their gravamagnetic organ. Despite their fatigue from the long mission in cramped quarters, all of them were poised for action. They knew that they were far behind enemy lines, and the slightest delay in their reaction time might have dire consequences for themselves and the fighters that they were here to support.
Lieutenant Prime Asras Firnx checked his passive scanners for the tenth time. They still showed nothing but the nearest rocks in the asteroid field. He could see nothing of the fighters or the other patrol boats.
He had placed himself at the bottom of the U, with several fighters spread out near him. He had placed the other Fi-Con near the top of the U close to the other set of fighters. If an overwhelming force of Klingons or Seltorians showed up, the two of them would attempt to pick up their fighters as quickly as possible before they had to leave. Of course, just about any force that shows up could be classed as overwhelming, he thought sarcastically. He was not sanguine about their chance of success.
Firnx was still quite young by Tholian standards, but he had a promising naval career ahead of him. While the rest of the crew was mainly composed of technical officers and civilians doing their Turn service who would leave the military as soon as possible, he had already decided to build a career there. He had been assigned to Fi-Cons because he had a tendency to think outside of the box, something that was often needed in testing new systems. He was also something of a maverick and the other officers had sent him to the Fi-Con to get him out of the way until he matured.
To Firnx, this assignment was just another stepping stone in his career progression, albeit one with a greater risk of his being killed in action than almost any other duty. The only duty he thought that might have a higher risk than flying in patrol boats would be piloting a fighter.
(Continue reading here)
Ask Admiral Growler
Peter Wiggen asks: Rule (P3.24) states that a pseudo-plasma torpedo may lead real plasma torpedoes through asteroid hexes but the following torpedoes "would not be protected from damage by the pseudo-plasma torpedo (and roll for damage if the pseudo-plasma torpedo were damaged)." Does not this expose a pseudo-plasma torpedo as such and why would anyone ever use a pseudo-plasma torpedo to lead other torpedoes? Or, is it implied that the roll of the following torpedoes is done in secret?
ANSWER: Tactics are not straightforward "always do things this way" and circumstances vary. Sometimes a captain may find himself in a situation where he has to try to "bluff" and rules are written in some cases to cover the bluff (without actually saying that that is what they are for).
A captain might launch a pseudo-plasma torpedo in hopes that he can pull his opponent's last weasel, perhaps supporting it with either additional pseudo-plasma torpedoes (or a real plasma torpedo). If this happens in an asteroid field, you would expect one of the plasma torpedoes to be leading the other (in an effort to mitigate damage). At that point, would the larger torpedo lead the smaller torpedo, or vice versa? What would most likely convince you the pseudo-plasma torpedo is real? He may have to gamble on the pseudo-plasma torpedo leading, because he needs you to launch that weasel. And if the pseudo-plasma torpedo hits a rock . . . he loses the gamble.
The rules allow that gamble to be taken, and yes, it is at the expense of the gamble failing utterly (the pseudo-plasma torpedo will be revealed when the following plasma is damaged). However, it was better than allowing pseudo-plasma torpedoes to simply always be used to lead the real plasma torpedoes through asteroid hexes unscathed.
So, an asteroid impact will reveal that a pseudo-plasma torpedo is a pseudo-plasma torpedo if it is leading other plasma torpedoes, but it is not an automatic occurrence. Yes, the chances of a pseudo-plasma torpedo not being damaged in any given hex of rocks is only 16%, but sometimes crazy gambles pay off.
Follow-up question: I can see why one would gamble in such a fashion hoping that the gamble would "pay-off" before the bluff was called. I think it would do well to include your explanation in errata perhaps. At face value, to the uninitiated, it appears as a contradiction to normal play. If I were just learning the game, I think the rule (given your clearer definition) could appear as arcane.
ANSWER: Tactics are always evolving.
For example, you might deliberately launch two pseudo-plasma torpedoes trying to pull that last wild weasel. If the first pseudo-plasma torpedo hits a rock and is shredded by it, does it matter that the second pseudo-plasma torpedo is also shredded? The fact that the second pseudo-plasma torpedo is also shredded reveals that the first one is a pseudo-plasma torpedo, sure. Will your opponent gamble that the second torpedo is also a pseudo-plasma torpedo (yes, it took asteroid damage, just as a pseudo-plasma torpedo would . . . or a real plasma torpedo would . . . but that does not mean it is a pseudo-plasma torpedo too)? Or will he punch out that wild weasel? A lot of tactics eventually do involve (legally) tricking your opponent into making a mistake.
Like stopping your D7 and inviting the Hydran to overrun you because you are convinced the Hydran will think you are using the power to reinforce your shields . . . and snaring him in a Range-3 tractor beam (what you really did with the power), trapping his fighters aboard his ship and causing him to forget that it is the middle of the turn . . . plenty of time after he fires his alpha strike for a scatter-pack shuttle to be launched, become active, and release its drones so that they impact his ship before the current turn ends. He was not tricked by being told it was too late for a scatter-pack; he was tricked by being tractored unexpectedly at Range 3 in the middle of the turn; all else followed from that. As he later wrote (or words to this effect): "Just because your opponent is doing something you know is stupid, it does not mean that it is."
(End of Ask Growler )
Q: Once Orion secedes from the Federation, can diplomats be sent to Orion as an armed neutral?
A: Yes, just like the LDR, the Orion Enclave is considered a "permanent neutral" with special rules in (503.5). The diplomat may be delivered per (540.14).
Q: Can a diplomat be sent to the WYN Cluster?
A: No, see rule (540.23) which prohibits this.
Q: Can a player use espionage and sabotage missions (534.232) to assassinate enemy diplomats in neutral space?
A: Yes, this is what Prime Teams do.
Q: We've been doing the rolls for negotiating with neutral planets during the Economic Phase. Is this correct? I don't see it defined anywhere.
A: Look harder! As per rule (540.251) the rolls are done in the Economic Phase of the SOP in Step 1C3 before income is determined.
(End of F&E Q&A)
ASK AUNT JEAN
Q: I wonder, does the ISC legally treat the four Quad members as separate individuals, or as one citizen split into four parts? (And from a military perspective, does taking a Quad over a "regular" Veltressai mean not taking three other officers and/or crewmen aboard ship instead?)
A: A Quad has exactly the same knowledge and skills among all of its members. What one learns, the others also learn (minus the muscle memory). There are hefty penalties should one of them die or be held apart so they cannot "synch up." The loss of one member isn't something easily shaken off, so be very careful when taking them as a character. In GURPS terms, they have a hefty -15 point addiction, so it is pretty serious business for all the survivors. We'll find out more about how Quads function when we explore the Inter-Stellar Concordium in a sourcebook.
If you want more information, check out this page: http://www.starfleetgames.com/deckplanresources.shtml
Send questions to Jean at design@StarFleetGames.com and SVC will decide which one Jean will answer next.
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
As a plasma torpedo player, it is very easy to fear using the bolt. A seeking plasma torpedo is a "guaranteed" hit (no die rolling is required), while a plasma bolt has very bad to-hit rolls (one-to-four out of six at best) and does only half the damage of the seeking plasma torpedo that was bolted. However, it is important to remember that plasma bolts always have their uses.
Bolts have three very advantageous characteristics. While their overall to-hit numbers are not great, they have two ranges where it is relatively good. These are Range 5 and Range 9-10. Also, plasma bolts can use directed targeting. Third, they cannot be shot down by phasers.
At Range 5, the to-hit roll is one-to-four, which is directly comparable to disruptors, a fairly "accurate" weapon. This is usually just outside the most effective range for other weapons.
At Range 9-10, the to-hit roll is one-to-three, which is fairly good for that range, especially considering that heavy bolts (plasma-G, plasma-S, and plasma-R) do fairly significant damage. This is also outside overload range. This means that if you can take your shot at Range 10, and stay outside Range 8, you are guaranteed to score better damage than you receive. (Range 9-10 is termed the plasma bolt's "glory zone.")
Bolting is the secondary mode of plasma torpedoes, but is still a very important option. This is especially important when fighting opponents who will not slow down below a baseline speed of 24.
(End of FC Tactic of the Month)
SFB Tactic of the Month
KEEP AN EYE OUT
Ships operating solo that expect to drop fire control or are fighting around a planet should take into account that continuity of tracking rules say that any unit with a lock-on counts for continuous tracking. Launch a shuttle or beam a pilot into a used friendly or enemy scatter-pack, voided weasel, or other unit capable of keeping an eye on the enemy's launched seeking weapons. This will keep information about their launching racks or tubes alive when your primary ship has no lock-on. Use the information to track from where large drones or pseudo plasma torpedoes have launched.
Starline 2500 Orion Salvage Cruiser