STAR FLEET BATTLES
FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions

STAR FLEET BATTLES LOOKS A LOT LIKE STAR TREK. IS IT?

Star Fleet Battles and the other games of the Star Fleet Universe are based on (but have expanded vastly beyond) the original 1966-69 Star Trek television show and use that material under a special contract with Paramount Pictures Corporation. We are not authorized to use Next Generation, Voyager, or Deep Space Nine, and we cannot use names of characters. You'll find Vulcans here, but not one named "Spock". Star Fleet Battles was created in 1975 and first published in 1979. Before the movies, we had already expanded the universe, adding many new empires, ships, classes, and concepts. In that regard, Star Fleet Universe and Star Trek Universe diverged from a common origin.

WHY ISN'T THERE AN SFB COMPUTER GAME? OR AT LEAST PLAY AID SOFTWARE?

ADB, Inc., is moving to produce SFB-related software of various types. ADB, Inc. previously contracted with Interplay to produce STAR FLEET COMMAND, which had many aspects of Star Fleet Battles. While this game is "out of print" it is still one of the most-played computer games ever published. NO ONE can do computer software specifically for SFB. You can do your own and use it yourself, but you cannot sell it and you cannot even upload it or give it away for free (since that would cost us sales). We are planning to release the first of several SFB play aid packages shortly. You can play SFB and FC (and, soon, F&E and SFBF) on-line through a software client. See SFB On-Line.

What new products are in development?

This is explained on our product schedule.
 
I INVENTED THIS NEW EMPIRE. CAN I SEND IT IN?

Yes, but you should know a couple of points. New historical empires are all but impossible to publish as they cannot be accounted for in the existing history. If you think you know a way around that, send us an email with a brief outline of your idea. 
The new Stellar Shadow product line will produce many new empires in the Sargasso Sector products and in the Stellar Shadow Journal line. However, these will not be a part of the real SFB universe but part of alternative dimensions and timelines. (So if you want your empire to conquer the Klingons in Y155 and fight the General War against the Feds, go right ahead.) We are no longer requiring people to pay for publishing of Stellar Shadows material. 
Now, if you want to go into business published your own SFB-compatible galaxy, we can offer you a galaxy license. This will involve paying us a chunk of change up front and royalties on your products, but we can offer you use of some or our material (Seltorians, Neo-Tholians, Andromedans) and a spot in Captain's Log. If you have new empires for the Omega sector, you need to send them to Bruce Graw at Agents of Gaming. If Bruce rejects your idea you can send it to us and we'll see if we can work something out.

CAN I PUT STUFF TAKEN FROM THE SFB WEB PAGE ON MY OWN WEB PAGE?

Sorry, but the answer is a polite but firm "no". Much of what we have would require getting permission from Paramount, a slow and expensive process that usually involves paying for the privilege. While some items could be authorized by ADB (which owns everything related to SFB that Paramount doesn't) alone, doing so would simply confuse the players and detract from the official SFB web page. Keeping track of who had been given permission to do what would require more accounting than the rest of running the business does. Sorry, just too difficult. Nothing from this web page can be placed on ANY other web page or BBS, with the exception of certain press releases which are clearly marked. We are considering a plan to provide some material for such use under certain conditions. When we have this concept worked out, we'll let everyone know.

CAN YOU SEND ME SOME PLAYTEST STUFF?

Yes, but about 90% of the people we send playtest stuff never report on it and we can't afford the time to send stuff out without getting reports in return. If you want to playtest, get stuff from the playtest library and report on THAT.. After you show you can and will do the job, we'll give you all you want. We are aware that we did not adequately stock the playtest library in past but this is changing.
 
I'VE ALWAYS INTENDED TO WRITE IN, BUT SOMEONE I MET AT A CONVENTION SAID THAT THE PEOPLE AT ADB WERE REALLY RUDE TO THEM. AND I HEARD THAT STEVE COLE DOESN'T WANT TO HEAR ANYTHING BUT PRAISE.

Don't worry about it. We're only rude to people who are rude to us first. And many people regard not accepting their submissions (no matter how ridiculous) as "rude" but we don't. Steve Cole hears praise all the time, and regards it as confirming the sales figures. Criticism is welcome if constructive and civil. By all means, if you don't like the way something is going, say so. If enough people agree with you, we'll go another way, but we wouldn't be going the way we're going if a lot of people hadn't said they wanted us to.

If I upload something or participate in the mail lists, do my ideas become the property of Amarillo Design Bureau?

Yes, under the standard terms published in most SFB products, that is indeed the case. (And yes, this policy is completely legal in all 50 states and under the international copyright conventions.) If you don't want that to happen, don't submit it without first getting a waiver from ADB (which isn't easy to get and is never given for such things as proposed ships, rules, articles, term papers, scenarios, stories, etc.). There is another side to the coin, however. All submissions which are published are credited to the author (to the extent of his original submission) and the author receives compensation such as a free copy of the product for minor things and cash for some larger items at $15 per page. All submissions are subject to review and playtesting which may require changes to some extent.

What are you going to do about miniatures?

We have over 150 ships in production for all of the SFB empires with more appearing almost every month.

What SFB material can I post on my own web site?

See our web policy document, but in summary: 
1. Your personal gaming experiences or reviews are your business, not ours. 
2. You cannot post anything from an official product. If you think that something should be on internet, convince us to put it on the official site. We can authorize you to use some art and images but you have to ask first. 
3. Your proposals or new races, ships, etc. can be posted under the Web policy; see it for details.
 
What happened to the old Prime Directive role playing game?

This was not done by ADB Inc. and did not sell well. We still have copies of these old products in stock but we have launched a new RPG line using the GURPS and d20 engines. We are working on plans to provide Prime Directive books for other game engines.
 
Is the new Star Fleet Battle Force card game a warmed over version of the old Star Fleet Missions card game?

Not at all! SFBF is a new design based on the popular 'naval war' concept but with many new twists.
 

What is the VIP code required to register on the Federation Commander forums?

The VIP code is: 82427

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