September 2011

Star Fleet Universe News

THE BIG NEWS: This month is the massive amount of progress that has been made on the new Starline 2500 miniatures by Mongoose. You can find a lot of 3D "photos" of the new ships on the BBS under the Joint Venture wth Mongoose (look there for the folder on 2500s, and inside that for folders of each new ship as it appears).

WEBSITE: Our website,, 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 the Wall of Honor where we recognize our volunteers and their contributions.

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 news feed.

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 websites have been changed to match. The new site is
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) have been 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.
Ambassador Badge


All players in our FFAC tournament have finished the second round games and a few have started the fourth round. The format took some cat-herding (people who are slow to play games make life boring for everyone else) but with strong judges and cat-herders we decided this was perfectly useable as the format for the Platinum Hat. The third round will be done before September 10th.


Platinum hat is past the second round with many third round games played and the third round deadline looming (18 Sept).

Tournament Sheepdog Peter Bakija is encouraging people to get their games done.

The entry fee ($10 per person) will be added to the prize fund which ADB, Inc., has always provided, making this the richest SFB tournament ever held!
1st: $200 cash
2nd: $100 cash
3rd-4th: $50 gift certificate
5th-8th: $20 gift certificate
9th-16h: $5 gift certificate

Download Transmissions

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!

FC Forum Recent Posts

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 an explosion in the Federation Commander Play by Email topic and even more exciting to see more FCOL Tournaments taking place. 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 communication.

FC Tactic of the Month

     A pirate ship with six drone racks can be a very dangerous opponent. It can launch a full spread of six drones on every turn for four consecutive turns. The tactical options are frightening for any would-be opponent.
     The pirate can launch six drones and follow them toward their target. If the target is fast and attempts to avoid the drones, the Orion can change course at high speed to intercept. On the next turn the Orion can cancel tracking for the on-map drones as it bears down on the target ship and launch a new spread of six drones at closer range. If the target is slow and cannot avoid the initial drone wave, it will have to deal with as many as possible. Meanwhile the Orion is coming behind them with phaser-1s and more drones on the next turn. As many drones as the target ship destroys, the Orion can put back into space at even closer range.
     The Orion should not have to double engine power because the drones cost nothing to launch. That also means that it will maintain its stealth bonus, making it more difficult to hit.
     If the target cannot move at Speed 24+, the Orion can get closer for a more devastating attack. It can double engine power to give it the speed it needs to end an impulse adjacent to its target. Then it should have plenty of power to win a tractor auction with the opponent. Once it has anchored the target at close range, its phasers and more drones will finish it off.
     The key is to keep six drones threatening the opponent in close quarter fighting. After the drone racks become depleted, things become tough for the Orion. Reloading all of them will take a lot of time and pirates usually do not have that much time for their operations.
     Several Orion Pirate ships could potentially have five or six drone racks if drones are chosen as their optional weapons. And remember, in Federation Commander there is no limit to the number of times a rack can be reloaded.
(End of FC Tactic of the Month)

SFB Tactic of the Month

     Gorns have tractors which are perfect for destroying Romulan fighters in the later Early Years period. Since the Romulan fighters are Speed 1, they are very vulnerable to death dragging. In fact this might be the most efficient means of destroying them when they attempt to engage your ground assault shuttles.
     Of course, this does mean you have to come to close range of his fighters, but you probably would have to do so anyway to pick off fighters as they rise from the surface.
(End of SFB Tactic of the Month)

F&E Strategy of the Month

     The Klingons absolutely must make a priority of buying a diplomat on Turn #1 of the General War, even though it costs them 10 Economic Points and absorbs their first Prime Team. What?!? Klingons do not talk, they shoot!
     But Klingons do talk, as does their money. You start with a D7N and a D5N. Send the D7N to Lyran space, as the better ship will generate more income-and you do not want that cut off as might happen later in the war between the Romulans and the Klingons. Send the D5N to Romulan space. You need a Klingon diplomat there, anyway, and in a pinch the D5N can fight during a Federation or Gorn assault on Romulus. Send that extra diplomat you built, on an APT (possibly one that you build for that purpose) to the LDR.
     The reason is simple: Cash. The diplomat in the LDR will likely never be cut off from the Klingon capital during the whole game. That means that it will earn one Economic Point per turn the whole time. On Turn #11 you will have broken even on the cost of building the diplomat and on Turn #12 you will start netting income. Better yet, diplomat income is not subject to exhaustion, so the investment is much more efficient than, say, building colonies and survey ships (not that you shouldn't do those things)! Over the course of the game you will net somewhere around 23 Economic Points, most of them coming when you are suffering from exhaustion and desperate for every Economic Point. So, Klingon diplomacy is the Klingon way.
(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 August
Cloak and Dagger
Rallying Call

To see our previous Demotivationals click here.

Mini of the Month
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!

First sighting of the new Starline 2500 Federation CA by Mongoose.

New Releases

Communique #69 has been posted to the Commander's Circle.
This months Communique is the Special Omega Edition.

Recently Released
Federation Commander: Transports Attacked, Stock #4109, $29.95.
Federation & Empire: ISC WAR, Stock #3213, $47.95.
Distant Armada, Stock #6104, $16.95.
Starship Aldo, Adventure for GURPS and PD20M, $3.00
SFB Module E4, Stock #7104, $10.00
Omega Master Rulebook 2011, Stock #5670, $45.00

To be Released this Fall
Federation Admiral, Stock #4080, $TBA.
Federation Commander boosters #31, #32, #33
Star Fleet Marines Assault, Stock #2101, $TBA

To be Released in November
Captain's Log #44, Stock #5744, $TBA
A Call to Arms: Star Fleet, Stock #????, $TBA
Starline 2500: Squadron Boxes #1, #2, #9.

To be Released in 2012
Star Fleet Battles Module E3: Borak Star League, Stock #7103, $TBA.
Captain's Log #45, Stock #5745, $TBA
Captain's Log #46, Stock #5746, $TBA
Traveller Prime Directive (four or five books)

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.

Omega Master Rulebook
Captain's Log #12
Captain's Log #11
Captain's Log #43 Supplemental File
GURPS/PD Starship Aldo
Starmada: Distant Armada Rules
Starmada: Distant Armada Ship Cards
Module E4: The Peladine Playtest
Captain's Log #10
Module C3A
Module P6: The Galactic Smorgasbord

Prime Directive PD20M
Klingons 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

Star Fleet Fiction
Burden of Duty, Debt of Revenge

     Captain Kinzek watched the speed of his ship climb, a sight he always enjoyed. Especially in this ship, he thought. This ship accelerates faster than anything I've ever seen. He knew the additional power and maneuvering capability of his vessel had been hard earned, and had taken years of research. A full scale redesign of the old engines had been necessary. But what a return on that investment!
     "Helm, maintain our turn as tight as possible as our speed increases."
     His helmsmen acknowledged, and he momentarily felt an increase in the ship's turn rate, a minor fluctuation in the ship's gravitational compensation system. It steadied itself out again within a few seconds, and the deck seemed flat once more.
     "Engineering, status report."
     The Bridge engineering technician responded instantly, having anticipated this order. "Warp power at max, parameters acceptable, new couplers are stable, batteries at 100%."
     "Excellent. Weapons, report status."
     "Phaser capacitors are full, disruptors armed as you specified; one overload each side, the rest are standard shots. Drone racks report empty."
     "Very well," Kinzek replied. He knew all too well that his stockpile of drones had been exhausted a week ago.
     "Captain, we have a problem," the engineering technician reported.
     "What is it?" Kinzek asked.
(Continue reading here)

Ask Admiral Growler

     Andy Vancil asked: A Kzinti MSR (movement cost 1, Speed 12) has tractored a Lyran SR (movement cost 1, Speed 30). Later, it also tractors a Lyran PF (movement cost 1/5, Speed 30). Am I correct in reading (G7.373) that the following are true:
     O. The MSR and SR calculate their pseudo speeds based on the combined movement cost of all three units (2+1/5) and are now moving Speed 5 and Speed 13, respectively (as neither is using impulse power to move).
     O. The PF also calculates its pseudo speed based on the combined movement cost (and so is now Speed 2) but does not get to actually move the linkage.
     O. When the PF has movement called for, it still accumulates hexes toward satisfying its Turn Mode even though it does not move. It could turn if its Turn Mode is satisfied.
     The third one is where I am unclear.
     And just to add to the conundrum: This mess was taking place in an asteroid field. If one of the ships is pushed into an asteroid hex, what is the effective speed for purposes of asteroid damage? Eighteen points or twenty points? Or do we use the "net effective vector" thing? (Not that it matters in this particular case as both speeds use the same damage column, but if the speeds were different, it could matter.)
     ANSWER: Effective speed is used for asteroid damage, and effective speed is defined as the actual speed the combined mass is moving across the board (C2.412). Effective speed would be the combined pseudo speeds of the two ships as the PF's pseudo speed is not affecting the effective speed (G7.373). If the two ships are heading in such a manner (essentially head-to-head or stern-to-stern) that their pseudo speeds are partly canceling out, then net effective vector exception of (C1.451) would be used.
    Exception: There is a special case when two (or more) units are linked by tractor beams. In such cases, the units roll for damage when one of them moves the combination, but use the "net effective vector speed" instead of the effective speed. To calculate this, assume that the ships spent an entire 32-impulse turn moving in the directions they are and linked by tractor as they are. Calculate the distance each ship would cover in such a hypothetical game turn and use that as the "net effective vector speed". Ships trying to pull each other in opposition directions would have a NEV speed of zero.
    The PF would be able to turn (assuming its turn mode was satisfied) when it was called on to move (and its movement even if not actually done due to the tractor situation) still counts towards satisfying its Turn Mode as provided by (G7.373).
(Ask Growler continues here. )


      Q: Just to make sure, when is war declared? I've got a Klingon diplomatic ship within range of Sherman's Planet on Coalition Turn #6. The Shermanites allied with the the Federation last turn, and I want to see if I have a chance to roll to convince them to return to neutrality before my armada crosses the Neutral Zone on Coalition Turn #7. I sent the diplomats there during the Movement Phase of Coalition Turn #6, but I don't get to roll until the Economic Phase of Coalition Turn #7, so is the Economic Phase before or after I declare war?
      A: War is declared at the instant that there is an action that causes that declaration. As long as you perform the action to change their minds before you commit an action (say, entering Federation territory) that causes war to be declared, the diplomats would have a chance to neutralize Sherman's Planet before your hordes of DSF ships cross the Federation border.
      Q: It is the Alliance half of Turn #3 and I am moving the Hydrans. I moved a fleet in Hydran space from 0915 to 1015. Can the Klingons react ships from the West fleet, currently at the BATS in 1214, into the Neutral Zone? The scenario rules say that the West Fleet is released, but that it cannot attack the Hydrans unless the Hydrans attack first. Thus, we are in a gray area.
      A: It's actually not gray at all. Once an enemy enters a neutral zone hex adjacent to your territory and does not accept internment (503.61), a state of war exists and the Klingon ships on battle station 1214 can, indeed, react into the Neutral Zone.
(F&E Q&A continues here )


     Q: Are you ever going to produce adventures other than those for Free RPG day?

     A: Plans for the future do include adventure modules with critters and defined "stuff" as well as "world books" which would have a couple of well-defined towns/businesses, sketched in NPCs, and adventure seeds/hooks for the GMs to use. I want us to have a full-blown RPG line. That does need more dedicated "Jean time" and that means the end of 2013 as I cannot magically produce a product July 1, 2013. We do the ones for Free RPG day (and then sell them to people whose store did not have such an event) to promote the product. (Starship Aldo took a lot of work, but if it brings in two dozen new lifetime customers, it was worth it.)

     Send questions to Jean at 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 uploaded three new sites that discuss the products we are making in partnership with Mongoose.
Starline 2500
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 to add you to the list. (Obviously, they are free.) They are uploaded to the Star Fleet Alert page.

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)
Alert 100914 CL#42 (Adobe Reader Required)


Starline 2500 D6 and Starline 2400 D6

Klingon D7