March 2019

Star Fleet Universe News



        ADB Releases Ships in March 2019!
        On March 1, 2019, ADB released a total of 42 new items to its shop on Shapeways.
        The Klingons get their FD7 Fast Battlecruiser. The FD7K Fast Battlecruiser has the Aztecked designs on the wings.
        The Hydrans get their Apache Medium Command Cruiser, Comanche Medium Command Cruiser, and Pegasus Carrier.
        The Lyrans and their wayward county of the Lyran Democratic Republic get their Java Tiger Heavy Command Cruiser.
        The Orions get their Medium Raider.
        The Inter-Stellar Concordium gets its mighty Battleship.
        The Vudar gain their Dreadnought and War Frigate.
        The Andromedans enter with a bang. They get their Dominator Dreadnought, Intruder Cruiser, Cobra Destroyer, and Viper Frigate.
        The Omega Octant is well represented. The Ymatrians get their Dagger Frigate, the Worbs get their Frigate and Dreadnought, the Hivers gain their Heavy Dreadnought, and the Sigvirions enter with their Invasion Frigate and Invasion Cruiser.

Check all these out here:
Don't forget to follow us:

        Due to the changing markets, wholesalers are doing us more harm than good, so we have ended wholesale distribution in the US. Your local game store can still obtain our products, but now with better service directly from us. See Alert 190309 Distribution for more information.

        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 200 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 Columbus, headquartered in The Soldiery, 4256 N. High St., Columbus, Ohio. CO Lee Hanna reports that this group is active, playing Star Fleet Battles and Federation Commander. 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!

        The Rangers are up, fully operational, and doing demos! There are currently 50 Rangers listed in our database with 30 of them having advanced past Ranger Recruit, meaning they've held at least one demo.
        Star Fleet Rangers are our front-line recruiters in introducing new people to our games. They are hard working, tireless promoters of the SFU. They go to conventions, stores, game clubs, and other public venues to show our games and to teach potential players some basics.
        Why should you be a Ranger? Well, one of the reasons is purely selfish -- you teach people to play your favorite games and "grow your own" opponents. With enough interested people you can form a battle group and even get in on playtesting if you want. You get your name in Captain's Log and awards on your plaque on the Wall of Honor. You even get Star Fleet Bucks which will help you with purchases from our storefront. Still, being able to play games face-to-face has to be one of the best reasons to do it.
        So visit our Ranger page here:
        Register and join the the Star Fleet Rangers!
        And there is exciting news for Rangers on Facebook! We've started up a closed group for Rangers to discuss ideas, best practices, and to simply hang out with serious enthusiasts. You must be on Jean's list of Rangers before you can become a member. Join it here:
Ambassador Badge

        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) 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 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:



        Masters 2018 has all of the 16 Round 1 games played; five of the Round 2 games are completed. Andy Koch is the judge in this "just for fun" tournament.

       Rated Ace Tournament 48 is being played with one fourth round game concluded and the other remaining fourth round game is being coordinated. Ron Brimeyer has withdrawn as the judge and Steven Petrick has stepped in to usher the tournament to its conclusion.


       Star Fleet Battles games are held weekly in Tempe Arizona each Friday at Game Depot from 2:00 -7:00  pm. Eric Phillips is the person to contact.

       Star Fleet  Battles games are held regularly in Indianapolis, Indiana at Family Time  Games. Anthony Harding is the contact person. For more information  see:

       Star Fleet  Battles games are  played regularly in Columbus, Ohio, on Sunday afternoons at the Soldiery. Lee Hanna is the contact person.
       Games  are held in Spokane, Washington on an irregular basis. Contact them to see if  there's a game scheduled. They meet at The Gamer's Haven, 2114 N. Pines St., Suites 1  & 2,  Spokane Valley, WA 99206, (509) 443-5992

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 her 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 lots of interesting conversations about a wide variety of subjects. 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 communications.


F&E Strategy of the Month

       They have broken through, so what do you defend?
       Often, the Alliance will be forced to defend some targets with less strength than they want to, so what should you defend?
       Clearly, the homeworld takes slots #1, #2, and #3 in the priority list, so this assumes the homeworld hex has all you are going to put into it. So what do you defend next?
       Starbases over planets should take the priority! Why?
       First, a starbase plus a fleet will inflict greater damage than a planet plus a fleet.
       Second, once a starbase is dead, it is dead. However with a planet, they never die!
       Let¹s say you can defend either a starbase or a planet, while the enemy has enough forces to pin one and capture the other.
       By defending the starbase (thereby protecting it), the enemy will capture the planet.
       The planet makes an ideal counterattack point for you. Either the enemy aims to hold onto their recently captured real estate (therefore allowing you to use up fighters, perhaps in exchange for the enemy crippling ships), or should they want to run, it allows you to regain your planet on the cheap!
       I should point out that starbases do not produce money, while planets do, so your treasury (and citizens) will not thank you for the logical defense of your territory!
       Occasionally a planet will become more important (supply for the enemy for example) so the tactical situation will take priority over the strategic situation. Still you can always regain your planet, but a dead starbase remains dead!
(End of F&E Strategy of the Month)

A Call To Arms: Star Fleet Tactic of the Month

        You could use the "line up" ability (part of a final maneuver at the end of the Movement Phase) to threaten a given ship, even one that has yet to move. Suppose the enemy really wants to keep a cruiser in a particular spot (not moving) for some game reason (within transporter range of a planet, or in a place he can fire between two terrain features at a particular target). If you make a show of moving a ship or two and "lining up" your firing arcs on the enemy ship that doesn¹t want to move, you are in effect announcing your intention to fire at that ship during the Attack Phase. You might convince your enemy that staying put is a bad career move. (You aren¹t actually required to fire at this target and could be trying to distract him from noticing what else your ship is in position to shoot at.)
(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!

Romulan Fast Cruiser painted by Michael Inella

Help us pick the mini of the month on our page on Facebook. The mini with the most likes and shares will become the mini of the month. Vote for the ones you like!

New Releases

Communique #159 has been posted to the Commander's Circle

Click here to see our previous issues of Hailing Frequencies.

Recently Released
F&E ISC War Chart Book, SKU 3210-4, $4.00
Kzinti Master Starship Book
Stock #5435 $21.95
Romulan Armada Unity
Stock #6132 $16.95
Scenario Log #2
Stock #4071 $6.95
Klingon Armada Unity
Stock #6131 $16.95
LDR Master Starship Book
Stock #5444 $14.95
Lyran Master Starship Book
Stock #5441 $19.95
Captain's Log #52
Stock #5752 $24.95
Captain's Log #52 SSDs Stock #5752-2 $3.50
Captain's Log #52 Supplemental File Stock #5752-S $1.00

To be released in 2019
A new Starmada book for both editions.
Federation Commander Reference Starship Book
Traveller Prime Directive Core Rulebook
New starships for the 2500 (1/3125) range including Klingon B10
New starships for the 2400 (1/3788) range including heavy war destroyers and the jumbo freighter.


       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.

F&E ISC War Chart Book
Battle Damage: Code Red 
McPherson's Ridge
Nexus #10
Nexus #9
Nexus #8
Nexus #7
Alien Armada Unity

Nexus #6
Nexus #5
Kzinti Master Starship Book
SFB: Kzinti SSD Pack #1 - Color
SFB: Kzinti SSD Pack #1 - B/W
Ship Pack for 2018 April Fool's Ships
Nexus #4
Hex Map Pack #1
Nexus #3
SFB: Module S1 - Scenario Book #1
Nexus #2
Nexus #1
Captain's Log #44
Captain's Log #44 Color SSDs
Romulan Armada Unity

SFB: Module R3 Rulebook
Scenario Log #2
Klingon Armada Unity

F&E ISC War Chart Book (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Battle Damage: Code Red (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
McPherson's Ridge (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #27 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #10  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #9  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #8  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #7  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Alien Armada Unity (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #6  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #5 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Kzinti Master Starship Book (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Kzinti SSD Pack #1 - Color (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Kzinti SSD Pack #1 - B/W (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Ship Pack for 2018 April Fool's Ships (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #4 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Hex Map Pack #1 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #3 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module S1 - Scenario Book #1 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #2 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Nexus #1 (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #44  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #44 Color SSDs  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Captain's Log #44 Supplement  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Romulan Armada Unity (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
SFB: Module R3 Rulebook  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Scenario Log #2  (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)
Klingon Armada Unity (DriveThru RPG or Wargame Vault)


For the Glory of the Empire

Star Fleet Fiction

        "Good morning, Lady Krenda," the secretary said. Krenda, shrugging out of her coat, handed the woman her briefcase. "Three new files today." Krenda grunted and checked the status board, accepting the cup of steaming kha from Lieutenant Krovenza as she headed for her desk. The secretary had already taken her briefcase there and had hung up her coat.
        "Anything special today, Lady Krenda?" the detective asked.
        "Nothing yet," she said, shuffling to her desk. "The hard file I took home was nothing important. I¹ll throw it in my outbox and you can burn it."
(Continue reading here)

Ask Admiral Vanaxilth

MRS Shuttle
        Koen van der Pasch asks: Assuming we have a published scenario, how much would I pay (in Commander¹s Options) to add a multi-role shuttle to a ship?
        Let¹s assume Y180, and I want to add a multi-role shuttle to a Klingon D7. Rule (S3.25) says I can use Annex #6 to replace an Admin shuttle. This means it costs eight BPV. Rule (J8.52) says that this buys you a multi-role shuttle with 20 slow drones as the cost of drone upgrades is not included in this price. Rule (S3.22) says that the price of drone speed upgrades is not paid with Commander¹s Options but are included in the BPV for victory conditions. Do I pay eight BPV in Commander¹s Options and get the fast drones for free? Or, do I pay eight BPV for the multi-role shuttle plus 10 BPV for fast drones, all from Commander¹s Options since the price of the multi-role shuttle and the price for the drones are paid separately?
        Kommodore Ketrick replies: You pay eight and the slow drones are free. You do have to pay for drone speed upgrades and this is explained under (J8.531). Half the 20 spaces of drones must have drone speed upgrades paid for, although you are allowed to omit some of the drones to reduce the cost. This is a kludge because it is radically unbalancing to give a drone-armed ship what amounts to a free reload of drones along with an multi-role shuttle for just eight BPV while a plasma (Romulan, Gorn, Inter-Stellar Concordium, Orion) or fusion (Hydran, Orion), or phaser (Tholian, Lyran, Lyran Democratic Republic, Seltorian, Orion) or light rail gun (Jindarian) multi-role shuttle does not bring such a benefit (taken by the Federation, Klingons, Kzintis, WYNs, Orions). So the drone empires have to pay for the drone speed. If they want all 20 spaces to have the drone speed upgrade, they have to (as provided by the rule) pay for half the drones to be upgraded. They can choose to not upgrade all the drones, but those drones are then slow.

        Follow-up question: So if I read your answer correctly, the drone speed upgrades are paid for from Commander¹s Options and rule (S3.22) does not apply here? The main confusion for us is the fact that (J8.531) does not specify whether the cost for the speed upgrades is paid for in Commander¹s Options or in fleet price, while (S3.22) says that, for ships, it is never paid in Commander¹s options but only in victory conditions.
        Kommodore Ketrick replies: Rule (S3.22) applies. Commander¹s Option points are used to pay for drone speed upgrades for special drones, i.e., when the general speed of drones is medium, but fast speed is available as a "special drone" you can upgrade a medium-speed drone (already costing your ship 0.5 BPV to upgrade from slow to medium) to fast for another 0.5 BPV. If it is Y179, and your ship is not a carrier with 10 or more fighters or a Kzinti ship armed with drones or a ship designated as a drone bombardment unit, etc., then 25% of the drones on the ship can be fast drones.
        The ship might have four separate pools of drones that this applies to.
        Pool #1 (not a rule that it is pool number one, I am just numbering them how I normally do it) is the drone racks. Total up your drone spaces in the racks; 25% of them can be made fast, the other 75% cannot (but might get other modifications, but generally no ship can have more than 50% special drones). This is going to cost you 0.5 BPV of Commander¹s Options per drone upgraded to fast. The 0.5 BPV that made them medium speed is not a Commander¹s Option expense for this year.
         Then there is Pool #2 which is for any fighters. Again 25% of the total loadout of the fighters can be fast drones in this year. This is going to cost you 0.5 BPV of Commander¹s Options per drone upgraded to fast. The 0.5 BPV that made them medium speed is not a Commander¹s Option expense for this year.
        Then there is Pool #3 which is for any casual drone-armed fast patrol ships. Same deal as above, the reloads for casual fast patrol ships are provided under the casual fast patrol ships rules once you have prepared any drone racks the fast patrol ships have.
        Then there is Pool #4. This is the multi-role shuttle (or shuttles if the ship is authorized two, such as a BBV). Because the shuttles are special, their drones get treated differently than the above. The multi-role shuttle is going to cost eight points, 10 of the drone spaces are going to be upgraded to the speed of the year (unless you choose not to do so) which automatically upgrades the 10 "reloads." You can choose not to do so, but this upgrade is not itself "Commander¹s Options," it is an added cost to the ship. Then you can choose to apply Commander¹s Option points to say upgrade three of the drones (2.5 rounds up to three) to "fast" speed (giving you three fast-speed drones in reload storage, and again upgrading a type-IV drone or type-VI drones have different costs). Any modifications to the drones by Commander¹s Options uses Commander¹s Option points. But the general year cost has to be paid and is built on.
        Now, by the above you have four pools, and each will have different numbers of drone spaces and different totals for how many drones can be upgraded, but even though they all start in different pools, once you have determined the initial loadouts, any drone in any "reload pool" is available to be used by any launching system. A drone that is a reload for a drone rack may wind up going on a fighter launch rail. A drone that is a reload for a fast patrol ship drone rack may wind up going into a ship drone rack, or a scatter-pack. The only thing fixed is what is loaded where at the start of the scenario, and even that can change if you are willing to go through the time to unload drone racks/drone rails and move things around to reload.
        Drone speeds are normally part of the total force (S2.11), not part of the ship¹s BPV (for purposes of figuring out Commander¹s Option points), but when available as "special" items (moderate speed in some years, medium speed in some years, and fast speed in some years), are purchased as Commander¹s Options. Drone speed is part of the Gross Adjusted BPV (S2.14).

         Follow-up question: Rob van Riel asks: The "current speed" upgrades to the multi-role shuttle drones is not a Commander¹s Option, but is added to the cost of the ship. What is this increase in cost paid from? In a pre-published scenario, where Commander¹s Options are the only source available for changes to the ships, where does the budget come from? Out of thin air, as a special bonus for using drones? As this stands, the multi-role shuttle user gets free speed upgrades for the multi-role shuttle drones simply because there is nothing that can pay for them.
        Kommodore Ketrick replies: If the year is Y160, and your ship (which includes drone racks because yours is a drone-using empire) has a BPV and a cost of 100 points, you are allowed to spend 20% of that for Commander¹s Options, giving you 20 points to spend above the cost of the ship. If you spend eight of those points for a multi-role shuttle shuttle, there are no "special" drone speed upgrades. Moderate-speed drones are available and are general availability [have been general availability since Y120 (FD10.65)]. You can choose to upgrade some or all of the multi-role shuttle¹s drones to moderate speed; this will increase the cost of your ship by three (3) BPV added to the total cost of the battle force. This is because the cost to upgrade a drone from being a type-I to a type-II, or a type-IV to a type-V, is 0.5 BPV.
        You pay only for the initial loading (which is defined for multi-role shuttles as half the drone loadout provided), which means (assuming all are upgraded) you are paying for one type-IV to type-V and five type-I to type-II. (You do not pay for the type-VIs in this instance because they are already normally Speed 12). As this is not coming from your Commander¹s Options (the drone speed is generally available and not a Commander¹s Option purchase) it simply adds to the total cost of your force. In this case your force is your one ship. So at this juncture your ship costs 103 BPV, but the three BPV for the drones is not available to compute Commander¹s Options (neither would any drones in the drone racks upgraded to type-II or type-V) and the drone speed upgrade does not count against your Commander¹s Options (you had 20 points, and have spent eight to have a multi-role shuttle, leaving you 12, enough for three T-bombs).
        So if you do not spend any BPV to upgrade the drones in your drone racks to moderate speed, your ship is still 100 BPV for purposes of calculating Commander¹s Options, it is 103 BPV including the drone upgrades for the multi-role shuttle, and you have spent eight points of Commander¹s Options.
         If the year is Y165, medium speed drones are available as limited availability items. Your ship is still 100 BPV (we will assume there are no applicable refits). You can still buy a multi-role shuttle (costing eight BPV). You could still upgrade the drones for the multi-role shuttle (or for your ship) to moderate speed only resulting in an increase the total BPV of three points and not counting against the Commander¹s Option points. If you want a medium-speed drone, only 10% of your drones can be medium speed (limited availability), and the cost is still 0.5 (0.25 if you upgrade a type-VI drone, and you can upgrade two of them for a total of four counting the reload storage). So the multi-role shuttle with one type-IM drone (total of two counting the one in reload storage) would cost you 8.5 Commander¹s Option points because the speed increase is a "special drone." You cannot get the medium-speed drone any other way.
        If the year is Y170, then medium speed is generally available, the cost to upgrade all of the multi-role shuttle drones to medium speed (1xtype-IV to type-IVM, 5xtype-I to type-IM, 6xtype-VI to type-VIM) is 4.5 added to the total cost of your force (also applies to the drone racks of your ship). Your ship is still 100 BPV and still has 20 BPV available for Commander¹s Options but has spent eight BPV for the multi-role shuttle. You can use the remaining 12 Commander¹s Option points to purchase three T-bombs, or if you wish add automatic terminal guidance to some of the drones [0.5 BPV per drone and up to 25% of the drones can have it . . . if you can afford to modify that many (which depends on the drone racks in addition to the multi-role shuttle¹s drones), you could run out of points to buy upgrades.
(End of Admiral Vanaxilth)


        Q: Under rule (310.14) [which was rule (323.14) when I first asked this], if you have an X-ship, you get a +1, and if you face an X-ship, you get a -1. There is a note saying to ignore the -1s if both sides have an X-ship, implying that both sides still get the +1 bonus. Can this be right?
        A: It is right. X-ships are deadly, even to each other.

        Q: Under rule (310.14), there is a -1 penalty for a differential of two-to-four points, and -2 for five or more points. These are on separate lines, so I think they could both apply. (My opponent says only one can apply.) So if I have two CWs (seven each) facing a frigate (five points) and two points of fighters, I think that I have a -1 and a -2 (i.e., a -3), but my opponent says the comparison is fourteen versus seven, and only a -2. Who is right?
        A: Only one of those two modifiers can apply, and you use the one that is worse. In this case you would compare the frigate and the war cruiser one time and get a -1 modifier.

        Q: Under rule (310.51), I can resolve a "casualty" (310.32) by retreating. Can the other side pursue and force another round of Small Scale Combat?
        A: Yes you can pursue, and if SSC still applies, you do another round of SSC.
(End of F&E Q&A)


        Dear Aunt Jean, How goes the revision to Gurps Prime Directive?

        A: Chapter 9 has taken a bit longer than anticipated. I'm putting back in the rules for starship combat and we wanted to include some graphics so you can see the weapons, shielding, and power. We've settled on including the Federation Commander squadron scale ship cards for the ships we are detailing.
Send questions to Jean at and she will answer as soon as she can.
(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 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

       We have also uploaded new Xander wallpapers to our Wallpapers section on the website: Wallpapers
       We have new images of our 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 190309 Distribution (Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 170327 CL52
(Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 160531 Cart
(Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 160518 Captain's Log #51 (Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 160317 For the Glory
(Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 150331 Captain's Log #50
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FC Tactic of the MonthTHE SHIELD BALLET

         One of the most often overlooked rules (especially by those more familiar with Star Fleet Battles) is (3C3b) shield transfer, or as the members of Battlegroup Murfreesboro refer to it: the shield ballet. This rule allows you to rotate five undamaged boxes from one shield to an adjacent shield. True, five boxes does not sound like a lot, but it can be the difference between life and death.
         For Klingons performing the saber dance, use of this rule can turn the saber dance into a work of art. By steadily rotating fresh boxes onto the facing shield during your oblique approaches, you can keep a stronger shield towards your opponent.
         If you do lose a shield, do not panic; do the shield ballet. A disabled shield cannot be reinforced to reduce incoming damage, but a five-box shield can be. Sometimes, the difference between no reinforcement and five shield boxes plus batteries may be enough to save your ship (or a key weapon) for another turn. Or in a worst-case scenario, the shield ballet may allow it to survive long enough to disengage, thereby denying your opponent the victory points accrued by destroying a ship.
(End of FC Tactic of the Month)

SFB Tactic of the Month
- Captain David Zimdars, USS Montana

         A player should at all times be looking ahead for the opportunities and/or negative consequences that speed changes may bring to either satisfy or delay satisfaction of a ship¹s turn mode. Speed changes, whether over a turn break, plotted, or unplotted may present an opportunity to make a turn that your opponent did not foresee, gain extra turns in anticipation of future maneuver requirements (opportunities to reach attack position or the desperate need to avoid a wave of seeking weapons). The alternative to such analysis is to commit your ship to moving straight due to lack of foresight. Executing an overloaded-weapons battle pass without a satisfied turn mode can place a player at a severe disadvantage. This tends to freeze players into extended straight trajectories, even when turning may be beneficial (or critical to survival). This term paper describes several tactics involving changes of speed to turn and satisfy your turn mode quickly (and avoid getting stuck being unable to turn), thereby mitigating the downside of an otherwise beneficial maneuver.
         By careful analysis of when to turn for a given speed plot, one is able to turn more times in fewer impulses in comparison to a more lackadaisical approach. In general, a player should always consider turning a sufficient number of moves prior to a plotted downshift in speed, in order that his ship¹s turn mode becomes satisfied immediately at the lower speed¹s turn mode, which allows for a second immediate turn.
         For example, a Klingon D7 moving at Speed 30 (Turn Mode 6) desiring to rapidly turn left three times (thereby reversing direction) should strive to make his first turn three moves prior to a plotted speed change down to 15 (which drops him to Turn Mode 3), so he may turn immediately after his speed change. He may then make his third turn seven impulses later (avoiding Impulse #17, which would add a one-impulse delay). A D7 using this tactic at the beginning of a turn could turn 180° (changing its facing three times) by Impulse #11. The whole maneuver is completed almost as fast as a series of two warp and one sublight tactical maneuvers, and is completed significantly faster than moving Speed 15 continuously (Impulse #15). Had the D7 failed to turn three moves prior to his plotted drop to Speed 15, he would have to wait 13-15 impulses for his three turns to be completed. (While not the point I¹m making, using sideslips in the direction of the turn will also serve to tighten the turning radius.)
         In addition to looking for opportunities to turn prior to a plotted downshift in speed, players should always be mindful that when turning prior to an upshift in speed that a ship¹s turn mode may no longer be satisfied when the speed change takes effect even if it had just been satisfied at the slower speed¹s turn mode. The impulse of announcement is a good reminder that a change in direction should be considered. Players should use special caution to avoid being locked out from turning for several impulses due to an unplotted speed change, so players should always consider turning simultaneously when considering an unplotted speed change.
         Changing speeds between turns (maneuvers) presents additional opportunities for beneficial and detrimental effects as any drop in speed is allowed, plotted acceleration is not limited by reserve power, and mid-turn speed changes may happen as early as Impulse #4. With this in mind, a player should strive to have his turn mode satisfied prior to Impulse #32. All ships move on Impulse #32, and a player should consider turning on Impulse #32 in order to set up the next turn¹s maneuver. Note, of course, do not turn and reset your turn mode just for the sake of turning.  A ship should turn only when doing so supports the overall battle plan. Conversely, the overall battle plan should be designed to take advantage of turn mode opportunities.
         For example, it is not uncommon that a ship being chased and/or having high energy expenditure requirements for the following turn must plot Speed Zero during Energy Allocation. All ships will move on Impulse #32, and turning on this impulse will allow a ship to execute two turns by Impulse #2 (the sublight tactical maneuver added to the turn on the previous Impulse #32), and three turns by Impulse #3 (using a warp tactical maneuver) of the following turn. This may yield an opportunity to bring to bear weapons, or move a damaged shield out of arc that would otherwise be facing the enemy. It might also be preferable to driving head-first into a wave of plasma torpedoes.
         In another example, a D7 may have just satisfied his Turn Mode 3 on Impulse #30 of the prior turn at Speed 15. He may anticipate the need to accelerate to Speed 30 on the next turn. Suppose he desires to change his facing. If he waits to turn after he has accelerated to Speed 30 on the following turn (making his fourth straight move on Impulse #32), he may not turn again until Impulse #4. Furthermore, he only starts accumulating movement points towards his turn mode (for a subsequent turn back towards his opponent) on Impulse #4. However, if he turns on Impulse #32 of the prior turn, he has changed facing four impulses previously, and has accumulated four versus one moves towards his next turn. Obviously you don¹t want to turn if doing so takes all of your weapons out of arc, but you may be better off sacrificing the firepower of the off-side waist phasers on Impulse #32 or #1 in order to avoid getting hit on a weak shield on Impulse #2.
         In the last example, suppose a D7 were moving Speed 30 on Impulse #32 but had only accumulated three moves towards his Turn Mode 6. The D7 wishes to turn as soon as possible. He may plot Speed 15 on Impulses #1-#3 and turn on Impulse #3 with his Turn Mode 3 satisfied (due to the lower speed). He may then plot an acceleration to Speed 30 on Impulse #4. Had the D7 maintained Speed 30 on Impulses #1-#3, he would not have been able to turn until Impulse #5, two impulses later than he was able to with the speed change. Although the speed change costs the D7 one hex of movement (in this example, a speed change up to 21 with a Turn Mode 4, would not lose a hex of movement), he accumulates three versus one moves towards his next turn on Impulse #5.
         While these examples are given in terms of a Klingon D7, the underlying principles can be used for any ship with any turn mode. Indeed, they are all the more vital to ships with lower maneuverability ratings than the Klingons.
(End of SFB Tactic of the Month)