August  2021

Star Fleet Universe News

THE BIG NEWS: Planetary Operations - Repairs and Spending and Raids, Oh My!

       Planetary Operations has more rules for Federation & Empire. It is newly improved and updated, having gone through extensive review and discussion during Stratcon 2021. All rules questions from the ADB, Inc.’s BBS have been addressed to provide the best experience for every empire. There are new rules for Combat (300.00), Repairs (420.00), Economics (430.00-450.00), and Special rules (500.00). It also includes four scenarios (600.00).
       Want to do interesting and dirty things to an enemy’s planet (or prevent rebellions on one of yours)? Then the advanced raids rules are for you. Marine Major Generals will give you a chance to use those surplus commando ships (which could also be used to prevent rebellions). Then there are those pesky Tholian pinwheels.
       Want a few free ships per turn from scraps of ships, keep key ships in the battle for another turn or two, and possibly convert ships while being repaired?  Depot-level repair will (once you get the war moving) deliver a few free ships per turn from what you thought were just scraps and fragments. Rapid combat repair will keep key ships in the battle for another turn or two. Planetary repair docks are, basically, cheap fleet repair docks that can’t move. Conversion during repair will improve the efficiency of your logistical network.
       Colonial development allows you to “build a planet” and then build a base on it. Better control of your economy comes through the advanced deficit spending rules. (Warning: there is the possibility of bankrupting your empire!) You can transfer provinces as part of a deal (or you can annex provinces you stole from somebody else). Trade with the WYN Cluster is free money for everybody, and even the Kzintis can do it by the new blockade running rules. Any empire can improve its production system by building a minor shipyard (avoiding overbuilds). An empire that has seen its capital captured but had the foresight to build minor shipyards can get you back into the game for less money by building a medium shipyard. Production overrides and allowable substitutions give you more control over your building schedule.
       Special rules include alternate ways to use the Orions, espionage & sabotage, the long-demanded megafighter rule, forward defense units, early warning networks, resistance movements, more tug missions, and special counters.
       Four new scenarios provide their own challenges and alternative starts for the General War grand campaign.
       You will need the Federation & Empire 2010 Rulebook and various countersheets to use this expansion.

You can download the Planetary Operations Rulebook from these sources:
       Warehouse 23:
       DriveThru RPG:
       Wargame Vault:

       It is available as a complete expansion (including the rulebook, two copies of Countersheet Three, the Depot Level Repair Chart, and a few copies of the Curtis Combat Calculation Chart) from either your local game store or direct from ADB:
       Good gaming to you!

ADB Releases New Ships for August 2021

       On August 2, 2021, ADB released 18 new items to its shop on Shapeways, which has over 2,750 items available in total. This month, we released new ships for the Federation, Hydrans, Lyrans, and Carnivons. Please note that all miniatures are available in both 3788 and 3125 scales, except when noted.
       The Federation starts with the Dreadnought Tug that is available in both the Federation (gridded saucer) and Fed Classic (smooth saucer) styles. This unofficial ship is introduced on a Federation Commander ship card in the July 2021 issue of Hailing Frequencies.
       The Hydrans take command of squadrons with their Lord Admiral Heavy Command Cruiser and Lord Cardinal Heavy Command Cruiser. The Lord Commander Early Command Cruiser, which, despite its name, is not part of the Early Years era, is also available now.
       The Lyrans and their wayward county of the Lyran Democratic Republic gain the Prairie Lion Survey Carrier. Note that LDR ship is only in the 3125 Scale. The Lyrans also get the same ship in a "refitted" version with aztecking in the 3788 Scale.
       Historically, the Carnivons were wiped out by the Kzintis and Lyrans before they got to the era of the "Modern Age." If they hadn't been, they would have continued to evolve their ships. These ships are described in Star Fleet Battles Module C6. Their Frigate and Destroyer are now available.

       Check all these out here:


        Our website,, continues to grow and improve. You are welcome to send us your requests, comments, and suggestions. Simone Dale, 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.


        Jean continues to improve our page on Facebook, adding many new photos and other features.
        If you haven't seen the 1,000+ 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 newsfeed.
        If you've already liked us on Facebook, but are not seeing our posts, then remember to check your new "Pages Feed" on the left menu. You can also go to our page and hover over the "Liked" button. Be sure that "Get Notifications" is checked.

        ADB has a Twitter feed. We are ADBInc_Amarillo. You'll find news as well as links to pictures. Check us out and retweet news of interest to your own followers. We're excited and our next goal is to get 400 followers. Help us reach that, please.

        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
Starline 2500 Miniatures Review
Star Fleet Battle Force in the box

        A customer asked about posting "tutorial videos" for our games. We like it when people do that (and even give commendation medals) but you need to have us check the videos to make sure you aren't violating something somehow (or that you didn't make a rules error). Doing such videos to make money is not cool. Please drop us an email before you post the videos.

        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.


         Star Fleet Legions isn't a new game; it is all of you who play any of our Star Fleet Universe games.
         For a game universe that is 36 years old, it seems odd (but very gratifying) that the number of active players is growing, not diminishing. We can tell this by the number of people on the fan pages, the number of Rangers and battle groups, the number of new Starlist entries, and of course by the sales numbers.
         Starlist is growing by an average of 10 new entries and five updates per month. There are 1,240 active names on the list (plus overseas, Canada, and those who last contacted us in 1991-2004). Not on Starlist? Fill out your application here:
         Battle groups have been forming up left and right. We started with one in Tennessee. Now there are battle groups in California, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Texas, and Washington. We've gone international with groups in Canada, England, and Taiwan. Battle groups are doing demos, tournaments, and game days in stores and conventions. Do you have a group you game with? Join us here:
         How have these battle groups been forming? Usually through the hard work of a Ranger. Rangers run demos, start game days, contact conventions, reach out to stores, and promote Star Fleet Universe games. Do you want to be a Ranger? Start here:  

        This month we feature Battle Group Hampton Roads, headquartered in Hampton, Virginia. CO William Phillips reports they play Star Fleet Battles and Federation & Empire. They also enjoy attending gaming conventions. Read more here:

         Do you have a battle group? Be sure to report your activities here:

         Do you want to see if there's a battle group near you? Check out the map here:

Facebook Fan Pages

         If you are on Facebook, you have no doubt heard of ADB's page on Facebook. Did you know there are fan pages galore? Fan pages are groups that are started and administered by fans. They are independent of ADB, so we may not know about all of them. These are ones we know about that support the Star Fleet Universe:

So join us on Facebook and get a fix of your favorite game there, too!


        As announced in Captain's Log #54, Jean Sexton Beddow's husband, Al Beddow has been appointed to take over the day-to-day of running the SFU Ranger demo team. He come with a bit of experience both teaching various types of games as well having been in quite a few demo teams (and ran/helped run a few). He is most familiar with GURPS Prime Directive but early on played ACTASF and spent Gencon 2012 demoing it in the Mongoose Publishing booth there.
        They announce: We have big changes coming to the program. A new handbook, suggestions for demoing our games, and vastly improved rewards. All we can safely say about the (already approved) rewards is they will include ALL physical products and PDFs – but nothing on
        To kick all this off we are verifying everyone’s email, plus getting their handles on the Federation Commander Forum and BBS. Our official comms will be the hidden Ranger section of the Forum, which are for handling business, answering questions, providing links to resources, etc. The Facebook group will be our more public social space, but no one required to join FB if they don’t want to. 

        So, we are asking each of you to email Al at the address below with the following:

        - Name
        - Email (preferably the one used on DTRPG/Wargame Vault)
        - Forum Handle
        - BBS Handle

        Al will add you to the Ranger group on the forum once he has this info, which will let you access our area there. He is looking forward to working with all of you to spread the news of the Star Fleet Universe!

        Current stats: We have heard from 22 of our Rangers and have three new ones! We are excited to see the Rangers becoming active as playing in person and cons once again start up.

Jean Sexton Beddow
Ranger Commandant 

Al Beddow
Sergeant-Major for Ranger Operations

Ranger Email:

FB Group:

ADB Forums:




        Jean Sexton Beddow 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) were 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. Contact Jean Sexton Beddow if you want to volunteer for ambassador duty.

        Take a journey with us to an ancient age, just one step up from carving game rules on clay tablets. The year 1973 was at the very dawn of the independent wargame publishing companies. Typesetting was done with a manual typewriter, print-on-demand meant the photocopier at the library, counters were printed on paper (and drawn by hand), page layout was done with scissors and cellophane tape, and two guys in a garage could turn out a wargame magazine that won two Origins Awards. The point was creativity, new ideas, and imagination. Production values would have to come later.
        That magazine was JagdPanther (Hunting Panther), created and run by the same Stephen V. Cole who later co-founded Task Force Games and then went on to found Amarillo Design Bureau. We found the ancient archives of this game company (which ran from 1973-1976, producing 15 magazines, about 50 games, hundreds of variants, and dozens of game reviews) and have placed them on Warehouse 23 so they are available to collectors. (Old issues have been selling on Ebay for over $100 each.) Issue #1, Issue #2, Issue #3, Issue #4, Issue #5, Issue #6, Issue #7, Issue #8, Issue #9, Issue #10, Issue #11, Issue #12, Issue #13, Issue #14 and Issue # 15 are uploaded.

Custom Decals for Starline ships

        Tenneshington Decals continues to provide custom decals for all currently produced Federation Starline 2500 miniatures.
        In addition to the legacy fleet and squadron box sets, decals for each of the ships are available as individual sheets, along with special sheets to detail any ship with additional window blocks, sensors, hatches, and even phaser scars.
        As with all of their products, the names on the ships are up to the customer and all sheets are custom-printed to order.
        *** Newly announced in November, decals sheets for Starline 2400 Federation miniatures are well into design, with decals for other empires in both Starline 2400 and Starline 2500 lines in development. ***

        For more information or to download the order sheet, check them out at Or if you prefer, email Will McCammon at: or Tony L. Thomas at:

        Jupiter IV Decals is a source of decals for the 2400 line and will do custom decals as well as all official SFB names. In the near future Jupiter IV will move into the 2500 line and will work to get every listed name on the Starfleet registry completed in both scales.
        Their website is:



        Sapphire Star 9 is currently scheduled to start on 1 Oct 21 to avoid conflicting with the Master’s event.



        Alex Chobot is holding a Star Fleet Battles tournament at the Las Vegas Open tabletop gaming convention. This will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada, from January 28-30, 2022. The con's website is here: Register and signup early -- Alex has plans for great prizes!

        Due to the COVID-19 virus, many conventions have been cancelled. We encourage you to check out Star Fleet Battles Online where there is a free demo version. It is a good way to hang out with others who play Star Fleet Battles and Federation Commander. Check it out here:

        Star Fleet  Battles games are  played regularly in Columbus, Ohio, on Sunday afternoons at the Soldiery. Lee Hanna is the contact person.


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: This monthly magazine repeated much of the same information that Hailing Frequencies does. December 2019 was the last month it was published. Old issues 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!




New Releases


Federation Commander Seeker and Striker Skiffs

Star Fleet Battles Klingon D70 Mission Cruiser

You can look at Hailing Frequencies Extras here.

Click here to see our previous issues of Hailing Frequencies.


Recently Released

SFB: Module R4T – Tholian Will, SKU 5637, $25.95
GURPS Romulans 2021 SKU 8404, $24.95
GURPS Klingons 2020 SKU 8403, $24.95
SKU M30002, $29.95
Tholian Master Starship Book
SKU 5437, $24.95
SFB: Module J – Fighters! 2020
, SKU 5604, $19.95
Distant Armada Unity
, SKU 6134, $16.95
Gorn Master Starship Book
SKU 5436 $23.95
Captain's Log # 54
, SKU 5754, $24.95
Captain's Log # 54 SSDs, SKU 5754-2, $3.50
Captain's Log # 54 Supplement, SKU 5754-S, $4.00
GURPS Federation Revised 
SKU 8402, $24.95
GURPS Prime Directive Vol 1 SKU 8406, $29.95
GURPS Prime Directive Vol 2, SKU 8407, $29.95
GURPS Prime Directive Vol 1 & 2, SKU 8405, $49.95

       We’re now offering some of our miniatures and some new designs on Shapeways.
       You can check out the store here:

Click here and you can see all of the products we have avaliable as PDF and Ebooks.



Federation & Empire: Planetary Operations 2021
Captain's Log #33

SFB: Module R4J - Shadow of the Eagle - Rulebook 

SFB: Module R4J - Shadow of the Eagle  - Black/White SSDs
SFB:Module R4J - Shadow of the Eagle - Color SSDs 
GURPS Romulans Revised

Captain's Log #32

Star Fleet Marines Battle Manual

SFB: Module R4T - The Tholian Will - Rulebook

SFB: Module R4T - The Tholian Will -  Black/White SSDs
SFB:Module R4T - The Tholian Will - Color SSDs
Captain's Log #31

Captain's Log #49

Captain's Log #49 Color SSDs
SFB: Module E5 - North Polar Republic (Black/White)

SFB: Module E5 - North Polar Republic (Color)
SFB: Module J – Fighters! Rulebook

SFB: Module J – Fighters! Black/White SSDs
SFB: Module J – Fighters! Color SSDs
Captain's Log #30

SFB Commander's Edition, Supplement #2 
Tholian Master Starship Book

Battleships Armada Unity
Nexus #18
Star Fleet Marines: Counter-Punch

Nexus #17
Captain's Log #54 Supplement

Federation Commander: LDR Ship Card Pack #2

Star Fleet Marines: Counter-Strike


Federation & Empire: Planetary Operations 2021 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #33  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module R4J - Shadow of the Eagle - Rulebook (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module R4J - Shadow of the Eagle -  Black/White SSDs (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB:Module R4J - Shadow of the Eagle - Color SSDs (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
GURPS Romulans Revised (DriveThru RPG)
Captain's Log #32  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Star Fleet Marines Battle Manual (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module R4T - The Tholian Will - Rulebook (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module R4T - The Tholian Will -  Black/White SSDs (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module R4T - The Tholian Will - Color SSDs (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #31  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #49 ( DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #49 Color SSDs  (DriveThru RPG or  Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module E5 - North Polar Republic (Black/White) (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module E5 - North Polar Republic (Color) (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module J – Fighters! Rulebook (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module J – Fighters! Black/White SSDs (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module J – Fighters! Color SSDs (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #30  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB Commander's Edition, Supplement #2  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Tholian Master Starship Book  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Battleships Armada Unity (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #18 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Star Fleet Marines: Counter-Punch (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #17 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #54 Supplement  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Federation Commander: LDR Ship Card Pack #2 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Star Fleet Marines: Counter-Strike (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)

For the Glory of the Empire




Ask Admiral Vanaxilth


       Andrew Granger asks: I am taking a Kzinti squadron into battle soon. I am not usually a Kzinti player and I am unsure how the percentages work. Could I get an example or two on how to fill the racks on a CM in Y175?
       ANSWER: Here is a quick example: Your Kzinti CM has two type-C drone racks and two type-B drone racks, for a total of 20 spaces of drones. It also has two 12-shot anti-drone racks, but these are not included in the calculation of drone percentages. Per rule (FD10.64), Kzinti ships can have 50% general availability, 30% restricted (and/or general) availability, and 20% limited (and/or restricted and/or general) availability drones. This means four spaces of drones can be any type, another six spaces can be restricted or general availability, and the other 10 spaces must be general availability. The Kzinti captain elects to fill the type-C drone racks with type-IM drones (general availability), and the type-B drone racks each with one ECM drone (restricted availability), one type-IM spearfish drone (limited availability). He also loads into his type-B drone racks two type-IVM drones with 1.5 spaces of explosive module and 0.5 spaces of armor module, sometimes referred to as the "8/18" drone (i.e., eight Damage Points and 18 points of warhead). Per rule (FD10.66), each of these type-IVM drones will count as one space of general and one space of restricted availability. Thus, the ship is using two spaces of limited availability, six spaces of restricted availability, and 12 spaces of general availability. The Kzinti captain could have taken more spaces of limited and restricted availability drones, but chose not to for tactical reasons.

       Peter Bakija asks: Seeking weapon drogues (G34.31) cost 10 points to replace a shuttle with. Does this 10-point cost include a single load of (slow) drones or plasma-D torpedoes, i.e., do you for, 10 points, get a loaded seeking-weapon drogue?
       ANSWER: The price includes the drones (but not any upgrades to them), per (G34.311).
       Follow-up question: Is there a list of when various drogues are made available? Rule (G34.0) says they were developed between Y178 and Y180, but there does not seem to be anything more concrete than that.
       ANSWER: All drogues are available to all applicable empires in Y178. If you are writing a historical scenario set prior to Y180, you might want to limit the availability of drogues for any non-Klingon forces, but in terms of tactical rules, there is no such limitation.
       Kommodore Ketrick adds: There is no existing data on when any given empire got any given drogue, and Y178 is simply used as the available date for all drogues. Their cost and the restrictions they impose on the ships was accepted as "the control" on their deployment. A ship which replaced all of its shuttles with drogues would be hampered in a campaign (lack of shuttles to land and support troops for example) and in "patrol" battles both sides would have access to use them as they saw fit.

       Alex Lyons asks: Spearfish drones are designed to punch through defensive systems and deal internal damage, so how would it react against an empire that relies on armor as its shields such as the Jindarians?
       ANSWER: Spearfish drones do not ignore armor.

        Troy Latta asks: A Speed-12 drone is targeted on a ship in an asteroid hex. The drone moves from a clear hex into the asteroid hex, impacting its target. Does the drone need to roll on the asteroid table to see if it hits a rock before it impacts?
       ANSWER: No. Per the Sequence of Play, seeking weapon damage is resolved in 6A3 before asteroid damage.
       Follow-up question: Assuming it survives the asteroids (or does not roll on them), is there an ECM effect from the single asteroid hex "between" them and their target?
       ANSWER: Yes. Per (P3.33), each asteroid hex between the unit guiding the drone and the target (including the hex of the guiding unit and the hex of the target) will produce one point of ECM, which could affect detonation proximity per (D6.361). Note that if the seeking weapon is self-guiding, the asteroid hex would still generate one point of ECM for the target.

       Phred Werenich asks: If an Andromedan ship displaces into a hex containing drones targeted on said ship, perhaps from a failed/random displacement or simply because of a (poor?) tactical choice on the part of the Andromedan commander, when do the drones impact? Rule (F2.313) indicates that impact is immediate, correct?
       ANSWER: Per rule (G18.0), second paragraph, a displaced unit does not "move," it appears at the new location. So rules (F2.312) and (F2.313) do not apply here; the ship has not "moved" into the hex of the seeker. While not quite the same as the case of same hex launch, the logic of (F2.32) applies here. Per the Sequence of Play, displacement happens during stage 6D5, which is after the 6A Movement phase. The impact will not occur until the following impulse, assuming both the Andromedan ship and the seeking weapons end up in the same hex at the end of movement.
       Follow-up question: If I displace into a hex with drones targeted at me, but because of rule (G18.69) some drones are now facing directly away from me, do they still impact immediately or must they use a high energy turn or turn in some way?
       ANSWER: See above. Assuming that you and the drones are still in the same hex the following impulse, they will impact; there is no requirement on relative facing, only that you and the seekers be in the same hex. See (F2.31).
       Follow-up question: What about an ECM drone escorting a ship. Does it have a random facing or share the ship's facing?
       ANSWER: By rule (G18.69), each unit in the hex would have a random facing relative to the displaced unit. There are no exceptions to this procedure. While this can lead to some funky results (Andromedan is in direction A from a Klingon, while the drone, which is in direction D from the Klingon, is in direction A from the Andromedan), you have to realize that any rule that attempted to cover all the possible facings in this case would be hopelessly complicated. There are limitations imposed by playing on a two-dimensional hex grid. So, for things like displacement into an occupied hex, and wild weasel collateral damage, we just use a random die roll.

(End of Admiral Vanaxilth)



        Q: In (304.5) is the count of the four rounds consecutive or cumulative?
        A: The count is cumulative "after every fourth Combat Round involving non-ship units." It may be possible for the Tholian to have ships in one round then non-ships in another. There is also no requirement that requires the attacker to select a specified BIR each round under (304.5).

        Q: In (512.2) may the Tholians alternate between including and excluding their base/planet from their Battle Force provided their ship count for exclusion is satisfied?
        A: Yes; as long as all other rules are followed.

        Q: Rule (512.5) states that the BIR of the ships in the web "is" 4, plus what the Tholian picks; however, may the attacking player use (304.5) (increasing intensity) to increase the BIR of the attacking force?
        A: Yes, the attacker may use (304.5) to increase intensity every fourth round so long as other requirements are met. Note that the increasing intensity number is a separate variable from the attacker-selected BIR.

        Q: In the case that the only Tholian unit in the combat hex is the base under attack, does rule (512.5) serve as a specific rule that trumps rule (304.41) which specifies that the other player may select both BIRs? In other words, the Coalition player attacks a Tholian BATS with six ships. There are no other Tholian units in the combat hex. Rule (512.5) says the BIR is "4 plus whatever the Tholian player picks". However, rule (304.41) allows the Coalition player to pick both BIRs. Initially, rule (512.5) seems to be the "specific" rule overriding the "general" rule of (304.41). However, it was not clear to me if this possibility was contemplated when (512.5) was drafted.
        A: Rule (512.5) is the specific rule and (304.41) is the general rule. The web effects trap and nullify the advantage of the attacking ships over non-ship Tholian who can fire their phasers through the web.

        Q: How should Tholian pinwheels be treated when located at a Tholian base? In particular, the question is how you treat the interaction between rule (322.31) which says a pinwheel is a "base" with rule (302.2121) and rule (302.2122) which cover action with multiple bases. The key interaction here is this: Do pinwheels at the same "location" as a base have to follow the "action with multiple bases rule"?
        A: Pinwheels are "base-like" units but are not bases. Pinwheels at a Tholian base do not use the "multiple base" rules under (302.212). Also bases don't count toward command limits, where pinwheel ships do per (322.52). This is also supported by the Sequence of Play for Pinwheels and the Multi-Base Special Sequence.

        Q: Rule (546.212) in Minor Empires governs special retreat rules for the Seltorians. If combat continues after a successful roll, is the permission retained? Is another roll required if the Seltorian wants to retreat later?
        A: The Seltorian retreat die roll in (546.212) is made every combat round during the Retreat Phase 5-7, only if the Seltorian player is considering retreat during this phase. If the Seltorian player doesn't want to retreat, there is no point in rolling. If a successful retreat roll is made but the Seltorian does not retreat, it is ignored and the Seltorian must roll again in future rounds.

        Q: Small-Scale Combat (310.36) says single-sided units (such as PDUs and PGBs) are eliminated by a casualty. Does this include a colony, colony base, or a colony under construction? I am trying to determine how colonies are affected by Small-Scale Combat.
        A: A colony base is counted like a glorified PDU. During construction/upgrade one must destroy the building unit.
        A colony is a planet, not a unit, so "once the Small-Scale Combat steps are complete the last player remaining may choose to devastate and/or capture (or liberate) any planets there and could then retreat via (302.7)." A colony can also be destroyed by two successful "G" attacks.

        Q: Rule (302.733) Special Sub-Priority 3E is confusing as to the "chain of battles" and what does and does not apply to a "fighting retreat."
        A: Multiple or chain retreats involve any battle hexes that are either created or blend into existing battle hexes by any retreating forces; the term does not distinguish between fighting or non-fighting retreats. If a retreating force creates or flows into an existing but yet unresolved battle hex, then that hex is now considered a multiple or chain retreat hex even if existing forces in the hex have yet to battle during the current combat phase; it also matters not what order the phasing player chooses to resolve the remaining battle hex(es). Players should simply note that the hex is now considered a retreat battle hex for the retreating player(s) and any supply points that were disqualified under Special Priority 3E under rule (302.733).
(End of F&E Q&A)

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 recently updated the look and design of the Rangers Page, check it out here: Rangers Page
       Here are links to various flyers you can use to advertise your Demos and Game Days: Ranger Resources
       Here are links to the new pages of Starline 2500 miniatures pictures.
       Starline 2500 Battleships page
       Starline 2500 Federation Miniatures
       Starline 2500 Klingon Miniatures
       Starline 2500 Romulan Miniatures
       Starline 2500
       Traveller Prime Directive
       Call to Arms Star Fleet

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by Cadet Anthony Cutcliffe, HMS Devonshire

        The "Zero-Energy Anchor" is a tactic whereby plasma launched at one-hex range, against a ship moving at Speed 16 or speed 16+1, will automatically hit its target before it can move away, without the launching ship having to spend power on a tractor beam. Alternatively, a target moving at Speed 24 or Speed 24+1 cannot escape the plasma if the launch is at Range 0. To take advantage of this, you need to end your movement so that 1. your plasma has the target in arc, 2. you are at one or zero hexes range, and 3. preferably, you are facing the weakest shield you can get to.
        As an attacker, therefore, you can use a "plasma hack and slash" attack whereby you damage or drop the enemy's facing shield with direct-fire weapons, then launch plasma at the end of that same impulse. The plasma will then impact the ship on that weakened shield because of the "zero-energy anchor".
        However, if you are the target ship for such an attack, you can still do something about that incoming fire: you can perform a High Energy Turn in order to face a fresh shield to your attacker. It is important to make sure that you save the power for this. If you are about to receive direct fire from an enemy ship at one-hex range that has plasma he can launch right now, you should be careful to save some power for that High Energy Turn and not squander it all on reinforcement. Keeping only a single point of power in order to perform an Emergency Deceleration followed by a Tactical Maneuver is not an option in this case as the plasma will impact before you can execute the maneuver.
        Also, and this is not often appreciated, if you can accelerate to Speed 24+1, then you may be able to escape, depending on the geometry of the launching ship's approach - unless he is at Range Zero of course. In this situation, a canny opponent can also threaten a tractor beam anchor if he has enough power; countering this beam could also eat into the power you are keeping for your High Energy Turn. In this case, the situation will have to dictate whether it is better to accept the tractor and still be able to perform the High Energy Turn, or avoid the tractor anchor. However, most of the time it would be better to keep the power for the High Energy Turn, because you will probably need it anyway if he anchors you.
(End of FC Tactic of the Month)

SFB Tactic of the Month
Ensign Gary Carney, HMCS Ontario

        For the Andromedans, dealing with the Souldra is a nuisance. They have no crew or civilians to enslave, and no planets to conquer save for ones they have taken from somebody else. Even more annoying is their dark matter damage procedure, which leaves no stored energy in the power absorber panels (since dark matter damage goes straight to degradation, then on to internals). It would be nice to simply ignore them altogether, but they have an annoying habit of showing up for feeding time at worlds that the Andromedans would just as well keep alive, if only so the locals can be placed firmly under the lash. So, sooner or later, the Andromedans are going to have to do something about them (if the Loriyill do not do it for them, that is).
        Fortunately, the doctrinal mismatch works in the Andro-medans' favor, too. That same dark matter damage procedure makes it harder for them to actually destroy Andromedan ships, rather than incapacitate them; no stored power in power absorber panels means there is no risk of cascades. Also Souldra weapons cannot damage certain types of internal boxes (so they have to rely on excess damage hits to blow things up). Plus, the usual trick the Souldra pull on most other species will not work against the Andromedans; Andromedans, for whatever reason, are completely immune to Black Shard vampirism. That means the Souldra will not be able to replenish their soul shields with power taken from Andromedan ships, although this might make the Souldra more likely to cram in as many alternate Shard types as possible.
        In these circumstances, the Andromedans may want to close with the Souldra as fast as possible, staying with the Souldra as long as they can, and smash them to pieces. Souldra weapons are not as hard-hitting as Andromedan weapons; the Souldra would much rather play keep-away and lob streams of dark matter torpedoes at the Andromedans. The Andromedans have the speed to close the distance, and the firepower to do damage even if they decide to alternate their tractor-repulsor beam shots from turn to turn. Souldra shields can be strong in certain facings, but are relatively weak overall, and depend on the kind of replenishment the Andromedans are unable to provide.
        The dark matter damage procedure from Souldra weapons is troubling, and Souldra ships are immune hit-and-run raids, but the Andromedans should be able to slug it out long enough to crack their defenses. The Andromedans should try to spread their satellite ships around, so their fire and that from the mothership hits several different shield facings on the Souldra at once; the more thinly the Souldra are forced to spread their shield blocks, the better. If the Souldra tries to use his dimensional phase device to escape, remember that it is a card a Souldra ship can usually only play once.
        One trick worth remembering if you are fighting near an inhabited planet (which the Souldra can use as a recharge station); Shards lose the connection to their home ship beyond Range 35. If you can tractor or displace the home ship beyond that range, any Black Shards that ship has on the planet's surface will immediately crumble to dust.
        The longer you give a Souldra force, the more trouble it will cause you; so get in close, hit them hard, and do not let up!
(End of SFB Tactic of the Month)

F&E Strategy of the Month


        Have you really looked at the values of the Lyran, Klingon, and Kzinti tugs when they carry a combination of pods?
        Consider a combat tug, with a battle pod and a troop pod.
        It is a 10-10 G ship, which is not too bad, when compared to a commando war cruiser.
        A tempting target yes, but it will take 20 points to cripple in order to remove its threat of a Marine attack. And if you are that worried, have a DD/F5 escort it, to increase the odds of its surviving.
        So it is something to consider, instead of just a "vanilla" tug and two battle pods. You will be giving up two combat factors, for a 2/36 increase in the chance of capturing an opponent's ship.
        Another concept would be to combine the troop pod with a carrier pod and then escort the resulting tug combination as a carrier rather than as a troop ship.
(End of F&E Strategy of the Month)

A Call To Arms: Star Fleet Tactic of the Month

        Firing Arcs: ACTASF is a hexless miniatures game. This means that there is no need to conform to the 60° arcs found in SFB/FC. ACTASF instead uses a total of nine firing arcs. Four of them are 90° (Port, Forward, Starboard, Aft) abbreviated as P, F, S, A and four of them are 180° (Port Half, Forward Half, Starboard Half, and Aft Half) abbreviated as PH, FH, SH, and AH. The ninth arc is 360° Turret mounts. While these arcs lend themselves very well to the hexless nature of the game, they do cause some issues with some SFU ships. We have made every effort to accurately portray the arcs, but there are some unexpected results from the conversion. Look at your ship before the game and make sure you understand the actual arcs. Nothing is as embarrassing as lining up a perfect kill shot only to realize that with the revised firing arcs you can't fire a full alpha strike.
        You Go/I Go: In both SFB and FC, weapons fire is considered to be simultaneous. Even if you close to point-blank range, you can still fire when your opponent does. In ACTASF, everything is done in a you go/I go manner. Players alternate firing their ships, and each fire declaration is resolved before the next ship gets to declare fire. This means you should always be aware of what ships have and have not fired as you can lose a critical ship to massed weapon fire before it gets a chance to fire if you wait too long to select it as the active ship.
        Terrain: ACTASF scenarios utilize terrain quite differently from previous SFU games. In ACTA, terrain is randomly generated for each map prior to the start of most scenarios. Terrain effects can have a huge impact on the battle. You should be certain you understand the rules of any terrain type in play before selecting your fleets. Some terrain types are advantageous to some units and disastrous to others.
(End of A Call to Arms: Star Fleet Tactic of the Month)




Mini of the Month
         Every month we will feature one or more of our miniatures. If you paint miniatures, submit pictures of your minis and they may be selected for the next Mini of the Month!

Nick Samaras painted this Federation Light Tactical Transport (3788 Scale Smooth Fine Detail Plastic).

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