VBAM Campaign Book

Star Fleet Universe Discussion Board: Company-Conventions-Stores-Ideas: New Product Lines Development: ACTIVE PROJECTS: VBAM Campaign Book
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Archive through March 18, 2011  25   09/27 11:02pm

By Steve Cole (Stevecole) on Friday, March 18, 2011 - 05:09 pm: Edit

Three more pages (through 29). These three covered the supply system. It's VERY complex compared to F&E, an extraordinary amount of fuss and bother for something that (to my mind) the staff weenies take care of without bothering us command-grade combat officers. I know enough not to outrun my supplies, so why should I have to do all of this work? The system is seriously different from F&E, which concerns me. It also concerns me that the system Jay is coming up with is going to generate zillions of "new planets" not on the F&E map, and I am not sure that I want them in the gazetteer. I certainly have no time to vette them. There is also the point that a "marked on the map planet" in F&E generates more money than six blank hexes, each with 50 colony planets, and yet Jay's system is drawing supply from those newly named and generated colony planets. This leads to a mountain of concern. His system won't work without an entire book of new maps with zillions of new colony worlds, and I'm simply NOT going to make those maps and colony worlds an official part of the SFU knowledgebase.

By Steve Cole (Stevecole) on Saturday, March 19, 2011 - 02:31 pm: Edit

I got two pages (and change) done today, but ran into a roadblock. Jay's next section is his command rating thing. He made up a whole new system which is radically different from the one used by SFB and F&E, and needs to do it over using the SFB-F&E system. (His system produces totally different fleets, and won't work. Licensign requires a degree of consistency between all of the games of the universe, and if he's going to have a command system, it has to produce the same results.) Also, his scenario set up system needs to cover SFB, FC, and Starmada (not just FC) which simply means whenever he says "FC" he needs to replace that with "FC, SFB, or Starmada" but I will let him do that rather than taking a whole day to do it for him.

By Steve Cole (Stevecole) on Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - 05:24 pm: Edit

24 Aug: I completed the next step in fixing the Fed Admiral technology rules.

3 Sept; I sent Jay W another eleven pages of Fed Admiral.

9 Sept: Worked on Fed admiral.

12 Sept: I did Jayís updates to 12 pages of Fed Admiral.

24 Sept: I spent most of the day doing four pages for Fed Admiral. While Jay got better on his formatting (heís still far from perfect) his scenario generator rules needed some work to clarify issues. I am sure that Jay knows exactly what they mean and do, but I am also sure that nobody else can be sure. So, they got some work, some rewording and reworking. All of this is done on the basis of sending the changes back to Jay for his review and approval; nothing is done over his objection of behind his back.

25 Sept: I had decided to work on Fed Admiral all day, and thatís what I did, but 4 pages of it went well and then I ran into Jayís FASCRs combat system, which is a mess. (The system is missing some key rules like what a squadron is, and contradicts SFU knowledgebase in many places, enough that it cannot be done under the requirement for consistency in the Paramount contract. )I sent it back to him to be done over.

By Steve Cole (Stevecole) on Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - 05:24 pm: Edit

This is definitely now a 2012 product.

I have four major things for the fall of 2011.

CL44, the highest priority.

Anything Mongoose wants me to look at, do for them, find for them, advise them on, etc. which is taking about 5 times as many hours as planned. (I'll wimp out on that one and say nobody could have predicted how much work this would take but maybe somebody should have been able to tell.)

Star Fleet Marines (which may also have to be delayed, no word yet). This one is my @#$% fault in that I did a design years ago, some playtesters dabbled at it for a while and said it was fine, so I put it on the schedule, then when the counters came in I sat down to enjoy playing it and it was NOT fine and basically had to be trashed and done over. I am about halfway through with that. The infantry works, but I have yet to redo the armor and the shuttles/gunboats.

Fed Admiral: My fault here, in that my enthusiasm for the project (Jay is downright infectious! I love the guy's passion) got me to put it on the schedule without seriously checking the workload required. Some of that is normal editing stuff. (I'd rather have a well-designed game full of typos that a perfectly proofread game that you cannot play.) Some of that is missing rules (which I just have to identify and tell Jay to go write, something editors have been doing for game designers for decades). Some if it is SFU compliance, which, again, is just point it out to Jay and let him go fix it. (If a DN can command 10 ships in SFU, it cannot command 40 in FA.) One can argue that Jay should have done a better manuscript but then I didn't get FC right the first time. (It's now on revision six with a half a page of corrections to even that.) It's a huge book (something over 200 pages) and it's slow progress (every few pages I have to send them back to Jay for fixes to the previous section and the next section before I can move forward.) I sent the last 12 pages to Jean, Leanna, and Petrick, and they came to me with a "please admit that you do not have time this year to finish this" plea and "please let Jay do it right and not force him to do it wrong" plea and, well, ADB has standards (we TRY anyway) and we just did not have time for this project to get there. Maybe if Mongoose had not taken so much of my time this might still have happened (at the expense of Marines) but right now I don't know if either will happen.

By Mike Slade (Therealmxslade) on Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - 11:02 pm: Edit

You guys should have this posted over here:


By Jean Sexton (Jsexton) on Wednesday, September 28, 2011 - 09:42 am: Edit

Mike, we let Jay handle announcements on his forum.

By Gary Carney (Nerroth) on Friday, April 13, 2012 - 05:08 pm: Edit

Very nice!

By Steve Cole (Stevecole) on Monday, October 07, 2013 - 04:40 pm: Edit

This project has been dragging, and that's just the nature of the beast. Things get put on the schedule based on how much work we think they'll take (vs how good we think sales will be) and when something turns into a lot more work, it not only takes longer, it drops in priority like a rock and gets fewer hours.

Anyway, Jay nudged me a couple of weeks ago and I promised to give the project some SVC time. Six hours of SVC time turned into the four pages I'm going to show you in a second.

If Jay wasn't such a brilliant designer I would not do this much work, but his creativity is worth the effort. Unfortunately, my time is limited in general and my time for projects that cannot be finished quickly very much more so. I think you can tell how much editing, rewriting, and improving the original text did from the color-coded changes (red is stuff replaced, blue is stuff added.) You all know that I don't rewrite stuff just to rewrite it, but only when the original text is unusuable, wrong, imponderable, incomplete, or confusing.

application/pdfFed Admiral 4-56-59.pdf
fed_admiral_4-56-59.pdf (33 k)

I really have no idea when this will get done (partly because I haven't looked in the file to see what Chapter 5 looks like and how many more chapters there are). When FA turned into more work than expected, it wasn't lost completely. It became a "poor boy project" which is an engineering term meaning "the place we throw work hours no other project needs". (I usually have two or three of these. Right now I have FA and FO14 and QARF, but FO14 has reached a point that the staff has to do the scenarios before I can print it, and QARF is a long-lead project, so FA has become the "first poor boy" in line.)

The theory is that someday down the road the accumulated little dabs of work will move the book forward to the point that we can accurately anticipate and calculate the amount of work remaining. Sometime after THAT point, the calculated amount of work remaining becomes reasonable enough to put it on the schedule.

By Eric S. Smith (Badsyntax) on Tuesday, October 08, 2013 - 11:28 am: Edit

Is this just supposed to be an adaptation of the VBAM rules for SFB?

Because I *loved* the VBAM combat system (which was very similar to F&E), and the campaign worked very well and had lots of great options. They were a great series of books I know many including myself are waiting for the 2E of.

Lots of people ask for an F&E Lite style game. I wouldn't think VBAM would need too much work to convert it, in fact, I tinkered with it a few years back to make it work with the SFU and had great success.

Feel free to delegate this to somebody else so it could see the light of day :)

By Steve Cole (Stevecole) on Tuesday, October 08, 2013 - 11:51 am: Edit

Nobody but me is qualified to do it.

By Randy Blair (Randyblair) on Wednesday, October 09, 2013 - 09:45 am: Edit


Nobody but me is qualified to do it.

Hey, whoever sent that DNA swab from SVCs soda, I thank you profusely.
Now, if I could just get that clone to stop fixating on my zombie poster and start working...

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