March 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 have completely revamped the Commander's Circle. (Please make note that it is now at a different location.) All the resources are now neatly organized, and doesn't require a login to view Communiques, Play Aids, and other documents. However, you will still have to register/ sign in to access the "find players" database. Check it out!

Star Fleet Universe News

The big news this month is the completion of our trip to visit Steve Jackson Games, 600 miles away in Austin, Texas. (No, this does not mean we're buying them. We sold them some heavy structural steel stuff from our old warehouse and went down to show them how to put it back together.) The trip was very productive. We got to see how another company operates and swap ideas with them. We playtested a bunch of their upcoming games (more actual gaming than any of us had done in years) and came up with some ideas for new games that may appeal to a broader market. We stumbled into some interesting information on die cutting which may change everything. We toured the Alliance Southwest Warehouse and learned ways to better help the wholesalers. We worked out a deal to (slowly!) start selling some PDF products through their E23 store; if the experiment works we may set up our own store. We may have a shot at getting into the book trade. We called the trip "spring break" and want to do this every year.

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,, 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

Many Klingon ships come with vast arrays of phaser-2s, and with a little clever maneuvering you can get many or most of them in arc during one turn. Unfortunately, this uses up a lot of energy points. If you can get to Range 1 or Range 2, then the solution is to fire them as phaser-3s under rule (4B2e).

At Range 1 the phaser-2 does on average half a point of damage better than the phaser-3, and 5/6ths of a point better at Range 2. The phaser-3, however, uses up half as many energy points, allowing another phaser-3 to be fired, or get you halfway towards arranging a Marine raid on the enemy ship. At Range 0 or above Range 2 the phaser-2 is much better.

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
Roll the 's'

When flying a plasma fleet faced with a carrier group, consider using a rolling-delay with your plasma-S torpedoes instead of holding a completed plasma-S torpedo. The power cost per turn is the same (two points per torpedo). While it will require two points of batteries (per tube) to complete and launch as a standard torpedo should you need to do so in mid-turn, it gives you greater flexibility.
(Continue reading here)

F&E Strategy of the Month

In the early game, the Coalition will often cut off the Marquis' provinces from the main Kzinti economic grid on a persistent basis, denying the Kzintis a supply path between the two at the beginning of the Alliance turn. Likewise, they can cut off the Hydran Old Colonies from the Hydran capital. This leaves the Alliance powers with considerable sums of money stranded and not available for use in the economic phase. This money can conventionally be moved using a tug by blockade running or operational-movement, or it can be smuggled out at a 50% penalty using the Orions.
(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!

Seltorian ships painted by one of our players. (His name is lost somewhere in Internet.)

New Releases

Communique #39 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

Federation Commander: Borders of Madness #1,SKU 4051,$19.95
Prime Directive: Federation (d20)
, SKU 8702, $24.95

Captain's Log #39, SKU 5739, $19.95
GURPS Federation, SKU 8402, $24.95

Commander: Hydran Attack, SKU 4107, $29.95
Star Fleet Battles Module (to be announced)

Star Fleet Fiction
SNAP COUNT Part 7 of 10

"They did not fight me," the voice of Beta said, sounding almost disappointed.

"From what you've shown me," Crawford said, "they don't have the combat power. They won't throw their ships away in a useless battle they know they cannot win. That cruiser is very fast, faster than anything I've ever seen. It can get around you, even at your best speed, and evacuate anything you threaten. They're still waiting until you threaten something they have to fight for, or until they have enough ships to win, and win quickly."

"I understand," said the voice of Beta. "Is the synthesized food adequate?"

"Yes," said Crawford. "At least, it doesn't make me sick and I don't feel hungry."

"I have no means to judge your health," the voice of Beta said. "You will have to advise me if problems develop."

"What's his game?" Williams asked of no one in particular.

"Target of opportunity," the Weapons Officer said. "That mining station wasn't that far off of his route to Arcturus. The Juggernaut is all about death and destruction. It was a chance to add to his score."

"I cannot agree," the XO said. "I have read the reports in detail. I went back and got the interviews, even the ones from the Tholians and Klingons. The first words of Juggernaut Alpha were 'At last, the champions are gathered...' He's not about destruction; he's about testing himself in combat against our starships. Maybe he's a robot gone mad, or maybe he's a scout for a future invasion, but in either case he's here to fight starships. His attack on that mining post was to goad us into fighting now, either because he's bored without a battle or because he wants to destroy Star Fleet in small groups without letting us make the rules when we get to Arcturus.
(Continue reading here)


Ask Admiral Growler

Simon Robinson asks: It is possible for six PFs (or six other ships with web generators) to create an instant globular web by having each in one of six adjacent hexsides use its web generator to create a web in its hex?

ANSWER: You cannot create an instant globular web in this way under the restrictions of (G10.224) which only allows you to create a web in a hex adjacent to two other web hexes if you are closing a globular web. The procedure here is trying to create web in adjacent hexes simultaneously, which automatically fails.

Ted Fay asks: I have a question about battle groups in Star Fleet Battles as found in Captain's Log #31 (note the rule in Federation & Empire). Can a scout be in a battle group and qualify as "the free scout" at the same time for purposes of command rating? Here is an example of what I mean, using a Federation fleet. I think the following fleet is within the command rating of the CC, but I want to make sure: CC (command rating nine), 5xCA, 3xNCL, 2xFF, and an FFS.

Under the battle group rules, basically three size class 3 "CL" types and three size class 4 units are counted as five ships instead of six for purposes of command rating. I am paraphrasing, of course. The five CAs do not qualify for the battle group because they are specifically disqualified (as CAs). The three size class 3 units in the battle group are thus the three NCLs and the three size class 4 units are the scout (FFS) and two frigates. However, the CC is leading 11 ships, not nine. The way I see it, the Federation force gets a command bonus of one for having a battle group and a command bonus of another one for having the "free" scout. That being said, this whole trick falls apart because the FFS (scout) cannot be the "free scout" and part of the battle group at the same time.

ANSWER: The battle group creates the free slot within itself. The scout can either be the "free scout", or it can be part of the battle group (allowing the battle group to count as five ships), but it cannot be both.
(Continue reading here)


Federation & Empire Q&A

Question: Rule (706.2) says that if CVAs are allowed, the one per year does not count against the overall carrier limit. Does this mean my Gorn CVD does not count against the Gorn limit?

Answer: No, it does not, because the CVD is a medium carrier.

Question: Is the Gorn MDS a heavy carrier (CVA)?

Answer: No, it's a medium carrier, and it has its own limit in (440.6). The Gorns do not have a normal CVA build slot. Note that both the CVD and MDS are escorted as heavy carriers.

Question: Can you give me an example (505.2) survey points ?

Answer: It's very simple. You accumulate survey points each turn, adding each turn's points to the "running total" until that running total equals or exceeds the "cost" of finding the next province. Then you deduct that cost from the running total, and add one province to your off-map province total. Say you have 18 accumulated points and the next province will cost you 20 survey points. You roll a "4" which means you now have 22 survey points. You deduct 20 (gaining a province) and have 2 survey points left over, to which you will add the future survey results. (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 to add you to the list. (Obviously, they are free.) They are uploaded to the Star Fleet Alert page.

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



This is the 3d model for the Klingon ZY fighter, due for release at Origins.