April 2009
Download Transmissions

The latest Communique brings you more Ship Cards, scenarios, fiction, and more news from the Star Fleet Universe! It can be downloaded from the Commander's Circle.

We coninue to improve the Commander's Circle. (Please make note that it is now at a different location.) We have now uploaded all of the ships and scenarios as separate documents (the ships are organized by empire) so you can quickly see what is available. Check it out!

Star Fleet Universe News

The big news this month is the release of FC: BRIEFING #2. This product has more ships in it (72) than any previous Federation commander product. Many are Middle Years versions of ships alreay in the game, but some are entirely new ships never in Federation Commander before (and at least one of them isn't even in Star Fleet Battles yet). This product covers THE MIDDLE YEARS, the period before the General War covered by the original series.

The big release in the last month was SFB MODULE G3, the updated master annex file, with a new Master Ship Chart, a Master Fighter Chart including megafighters, a Master PF Chart, a Master Weapons Chart, and a Compilation of Convenient Charts and Tables.

Our combined and reorganized website, www.StarFleetGames.com, continues to grow and improve. You are welcome to send us your requests, comments, and suggestions.

We are looking for a few good Star Fleet Ambassadors! Our marketing director can't be everywhere and that's where you come in! Do you go to gaming forums like Board Game Geek, RPG Net, or The Miniatures Page? Then WE NEED YOU! To get complete details of the Ambassador program, please see the Federation Commander Ambassadors category on the Federation Commander forum.

Have you missed an earlier Newsletter? Click here to get caught up!

FC Forum Hot Topics

The Federation Commander Site and Forum continue to grow as more gamers find it. We have added a new section to the Forum called Web Requests. If you have any comments, questions, or requests for our Graphics Director, this is the place to let him know.

We have added a new Star Fleet Battles section to the forum to discus everything SFB. For new players, the Federation Commander Forum is a little easier to manage whereas the Legacy Discus BBS can be a bit overwhelming.  Come see what the commotion is about and join the Federation Commander Forum now!

Don't forget our original (discus-based) BBS where most product development takes place!

FC Tactic of the Month
- Senior Lieutenant Benjamin Moldovan, USS Ohio

"Speed is life" is true in Federation Commander. Movement has been simplified, but there are still interesting options and game mechanics to consider. You can accelerate without complex accounting, and without increasing your turn mode, but only to a limited extent. You can decelerate more freely, at a price. So, the question is, should you move faster or slower? Let's look at both options.

Moving slowly has its good points. You have more power available during the turn, it is less obvious what your plan is for the turn, and your turn mode is lower. The key is, though, that you can only accelerate by one each impulse. If your opponent moves at a higher base speed, then the best you can do is match his speed, if you pay for acceleration. If he accelerates too, he will control the range.
(Continue reading here)

Café Press
Cafe Press

Café Press is an online marketplace that allows the Star Fleet Universe to produce unique products such as coffee mugs, t-shirts, tote bags, and more with the Star Fleet logos, cover art, and other artwork used for our products. We have added tons of new shirts, mugs, and other products. Want something you don’t see? Please contact Eric Olivarez (Graphics Director) with your request. Visit our Star Fleet Café Press Store for a complete listing of the products available.

SFB Tactic of the Month

When reloading photons as overloads (and the power is available) do not evenly load your photons with 4+4 (four power each of two turns). Instead, load half your photon torpedoes with 6+2 and the other half as 2+6 (using the same amount of power). This way, if you take damage on a photon the first turn of loading, you only lose a photon you put two points of power into. Additionally, it gives you more power options on the second turn of arming. Further, as the turn develops if you find that overloading the torpedoes was a bad idea, at least you have two that can be finished as standards, giving you some future tactical options.

F&E Strategy of the Month

IAt the beginning of a game (or when an empire starts fighting a defensive war), there is a tendency to want to defend everywhere at once. A good player will not do this since "he who defends all, defends none" and consolidates his fleets into a few defensible positions to avoid being spread too thin. When an offensive is mounted into this territory, there is a tendency to tackle these heavily-defended positions as they are encountered. While this approach does have some merit, it can lead to large attrition battles, sapping hull strength and bogging down an offensive to the point of handing over the initiative.

By using the methods developed in the South Pacific during the mid-20th century, you can "Island Hop" to achieve your objectives and still retain momentum.

When a strongpoint is encountered, enough ship equivalents must be kept on station to pin the force at the strongpoint. Every chance that arises (on your turn or if you are able to react into the strongpoint hex on your opponent's turn) you must attack that strongpoint. Scoring a SIDS / PDU step or even just targeting a key unit in his fleet on one round of the approach battle will "keep him honest" - concerned about your true intentions toward the target - which is NOT taking it down - yet.
(Continue reading here)

Mini of the Month

Every month we will feature one of our miniatures that has been painted by a fan. If you paint miniatures, submit your pictures and you may be our next Mini of the Month!

So we figured out who did our last month's Mini of the Month, Shaun Gratton. He also painted these. Congratulations!



New Releases

Communique #40 has been posted to the Commander's Circle.

SFB Module G3: Master Annexes, SKU 5423, Price $29.95
Federation Commander: Border Box #8, SKU 4408, $99.95
Orion Dreadnought Miniature, SKU 0826, $9.95
Galactic Conquest Rulebook, SKU 5716, $19.95

Federation Commander: Briefing #2, SKU 4022, $19.95

FC Reference Rulebook (5th Edition), SKU 4020, $14.95

Captain's Log #39, SKU 5739, $19.95
Prime Directive: Federation (d20), SKU 8702, $24.95

Federation Commander: Hydran Attack, SKU 4107, $29.95
Star Fleet Battles Module C3A: Andromedan Threat File

Federation Commander: Borders of Madness #1, SKU 4051, $19.95
GURPS Federation
, SKU 8402, $24.95

Star Fleet Fiction
SNAP COUNT Part 8 of 10

Bridge, USS Eagle, 1750 hrs, 22 Jan Y169

"Admiral, if you want me to attack now, I will," Williams said, "but all I'm going to do is lose my ships and leave Arcturus without an adequate defense."

"There has to be some way to do it," Admiral Kirkland said. "You were hand-picked by Star Fleet to command the Eagle. You're not just a starship captain, you're the best Star Fleet could find for a ship with unique capabilities. There has to be some kind of plan, even one with grave risks."

"Then tell me what it is," she replied, seeing him wince at the touch of insubordination. "Look, I don't mean any disrespect, but I can't think of anything other than to crush the Juggernaut between my forces and those at Arcturus, and that plan will work. Nobody here can think of anything else, nobody on Starbase Eight has thought of anything else, and nobody at Star Fleet Headquarters will think of anything else. Hell, I even let the Klingon attaché send a detailed report to Rigel and the Klingons at the embassy couldn't think of anything else."

"General Argelian wants you fired," Admiral Kirkland said. "His president has sent the matter to the Council demanding your immediate relief from command. The Rigellians are backing them; the captain of the Akerlon has accused you of outright cowardice. When you detached the Jerry James to rescue miners that the Arcturans refused to rescue, those same Arcturans howled bloody murder as that diminished the total forces. Our people there are stalling, but ... "

"Fortunately for both of us, I work for Home Fleet, not Seventh Fleet," Williams said. "I may be under your operational control, but you cannot fire me."

"Unfortunately for you," Admiral Kirkland said, "Star Fleet Headquarters isn't far enough away that they cannot get a subspace message to you before the battle."

"What was your recommendation to them," Williams asked.

"That there is no one else there to take command," Admiral Kirkland said, "although I have sent Commodore Sornak in the Command Cruiser Bon Homme Richard to meet you and assume command. He will be there on the 24th."

"Just in time to pick up the pieces," Williams said.

"Let's hope he doesn't have to," Kirkland replied.

Crew Cabin, Juggernaut Beta, 1140 hrs, 23 Jan Y169

"I will reach the planet in two hours," the voice of Beta said. "I have activated your tactical display so you may observe the contest. Should I prevail, we will discuss the battle."

"And if not?" Crawford asked.

There was no reply.

(Continue reading here)


Ask Admiral Growler

Gary Bear asks: In rule (S8.47) are the terms "Drone Ship" and "Drone Bombardment Ship" inter-changeable, or can a ship be a "Drone Ship" without being a "Drone Bombardment Ship" (with the "DB" Master Ship Chart entry)? Specifically if a ship meets the (S8.47) definition of a "Drone" ship does the sentence in this rule, "DB ships with special sensors do not count against the scout limit unless the owning player voluntarily agrees to do so (in which case they could occupy the "free scout" slot)." apply even if the unit does not have a "DB" designation in its Master Ship Chart entry?

ANSWER: At least in this specific context, the terms are more or less interchangeable. Rule (S8.47) states "For this purpose, any bombardment ship with a 'DB' note on the Master Ship Chart, as well as any variant which replaces all of the base-hull's heavy weapons with drone racks is a drone ship." I cannot think of any drone ships with special sensors that do not meet this definition. Not all drone ships are actually drone bombardment ships (many are designed as direct-combat ships, e.g., Klingon F5D), but all of the ones with special sensors are.
(Continue reading here)


Federation & Empire Q&A
F&E Q&A Part 2


Question: In a capital assault, the attackers strike a minor planet. The defenders do not send forces to defend this planet. As a result, the 37 damage points are nine more than is required to destroy both PDUs, all 12 fighter factors, and devastate the planet. Are these extra points recorded as plus points? What do they represent, since there is nothing to "retreat" from the planet (but there are other ships in "the hex" which were not in the battle).

Answer: Rule (308.25) covers this rather clearly. If everything there was destroyed, then nothing carries over. Note that in general, plus and minus points at the various planets of a capital battle (308.24) do get merged (maximum of seven plus points per system) for pursuit purposes, but not "excess" points.


Question: Can ships, captured and converted by (305.23), be placed into Depot Level Repair (424.0)?

Answer: No. The rules for Depot Level Repair (424.37) say specifically that captured ships cannot go into the Depot. There are not enough parts in the Depot (think giant space junkyard) to facilitate the repair of such a ship placed there.

Question: Why does the Romulan Depot Level Repair have a KR track if the converted Klingon ships are essential converted foreign ships, which are banned from the Depot by (654.2)? (Continue reading here)


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.

Alert 90410 B2MY1 (Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 90302 FCRRB
(Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 90224 Starmada
(Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 90223 G3 (Adobe Acrobat Required)



This is a 3D model of the Kzinti Fighter that will be released at Origins 2009.

Kzinti Fighter