September 2010

Star Fleet Universe News

THE BIG NEWS this issue is the release of PD20M Federation, as well as many new miniatures: Border Box #10, Federation LTT, Federation OCA, and the Tholian TK5.

WEBSITE: Our combined and reorganized website,, continues to grow and improve. You are welcome to send us your requests, comments, and suggestions. Joel Shutts, our graphicsdirector, 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. One of our newest pages is the Wall of Honor where we recognize our volunteers and their contributions.

FACEBOOK: Jean continues to improve our page on Facebook, adding many new photos and other features.
The videos Mike Sparks produces for our YouTube page continue to be popular.

VIDEOS: StarFleetGames has taken its act to YouTube and we now have a YouTube channel. We create a video for the new product releases during each month. We have also "In the box" videos to show the customer what to expect in the product. We'll have also done "Spotlights" on a single product or product line. So pop some popcorn and join us at the movies! Our three newest uploads are:

ADB May 2010 releases
ADB June 2010 releases
ADB September 2010 releases

PDF SALES: We have created a new page that allows easy access to our PDFS for sale on E23. From here you can see what we currently have posted and have links to those products.

CAFE PRESS: Our Cafe Press was getting so many items that it was a bit out of hand. To make it easier to find products we have grouped our products by the image on them, so you can find what you want more easily We'll be adding even more items soon and we want to hear from you! The latest request was for a Vudar ship on a hoodie. We picked out the Vudar CA and it is currently available on not only the hoodie but some additional items. So chime in on what you want to see and what you want to see it on.

STARBLOG: Our StarBlog has moved to a new URL but all links on the Federation Commander websites and the first site have been changed to match. The new site is

AMBASSADORS: 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.

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

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 continue to improve the Commander's Circle. We have now uploaded all of the ships and scenarios as separate documents (the ships are organized by empire) so you can quickly see what is available. New FC Scenario Database and Master Ship Chart documents have been uploaded. Check it out!

You can subscribe to our newsletter in the Federation Commander page under Free Opt-In Newsletter.

FC Forum Recent Posts

The Federation Commander Site and Forum continue to grow as more gamers continue to find it. 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 him know. Come see what the commotion is about and join the Federation Commander Forum now.

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, the RAT and other tournaments are organized, SVC's "My Day" appears, 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 communication.

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 an explosion in the Federation Commander Play by Email topic and even more exciting to see the first FCOL tournament taking place. Get in on the activity!

FC Tactic of the Month

    If you haven't read the rulebook, or just skimmed it, there's one important section you may not have paid much attention to, which has huge implications. That is section (3A4) volleys, specifically, point (2), which states that each ship, firing direct-fire weapons at a given target, is resolved as a separate volley.
    What does this mean to you? It means two things.
    First of all, you can reinforce shields up to the capacity of your batteries, for each volley. So that Klingon C8 over yonder that you thought could only put up eight points of reinforcement? Wrong. If you're firing weapons from four Kzinti ships against the Klingon C8, for example, he can put as many as 32 points of reinforcement on that shield! (Depending on which ships' weapons hit, and for how much.) If you didn't know that, you could be in for a nasty surprise.
    And secondly, it might be tempting to roll all weapons together to save time, and lump all internal damage together. However, doing this is against rule (3D2), and robs you of an important advantage. Some of the worst hits your opponent can take are the first three damage points of damage charts #1 and #6. If you roll each volley separately, you'll likely have more die rolls, roll more ones and sixes, and your opponent would lose more power systems and weapons.
(End of FC Tactic of the Month)

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. Cafe Press was a mess but we have now streamlined it to allow for easy access to differing products. We will later be adding new images and products to the site. Want something you don’t see? Please contact Joel Shutts (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

    In a patrol scenario, an independent fighter squadron can be loaded with whatever its fighters can carry. So the Feds could buy an ADW group (DW carrier with 3xF-111) and also buy an independent F-111 squadron. The independent squadron buys six T-bombs for its bays, and bam; it is a minelayer in a patrol scenario! Since you also bought an F-111 carrier, you have something with F-111 ready racks that can support the fighters.
    There are only two drawbacks. First, the independent squadron cannot be configured with remote controls. Second, the carrier cannot directly lend electronic warfare to the independent squadron. Configure one of the independent F-111s as an EWF to avoid this problem.
(End of SFB Tactic of the Month)

F&E Strategy of the Month

    When defending the Hegemony in the early war, post most of your cruisers, combat tugs, and your auxiliary drone ships at the capital. This will free your carrier arm to form reserve forces and to defend the outlying starbases and planets.
  When defending the capital, you want your biggest, most menacing battle lines. In front of the capital starbase and its planetary defense units is the place to put ships like carrier-tugs, battle-tugs, drone cruisers, dreadnoughts, all the really big ships. The Coalition is there to take the planet, or at least hurt it. If the Coalition uses directed damage on your cruisers and important ships, your planetary defense units and starbase live another round.
     When defending the outlying starbases and planets, a mobile force capable of repair is the better option. Carriers are perfect. They can defend, then use carrier retrograde to another location for repair if the base falls, or they are needed at another location.
(End of F&E Strategy of the Month)

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

Federation Fleet by Phil Abramowitz


New Releases

Communique #57 has been posted to the Commander's Circle.

Federation PD20 Modern, SKU 8722, $24.95
FC: Border Box #10, SKU 4410, $99.95
Federation LTT, SKU 0238, $9.95
Federation Old CA, SKU 0239, $8.95
Tholian TK5, SKU 0717, $7.95

Star Fleet Battles Module Y3 Early Years III, SKU #5634, $27.95 Alien Armada (Starmada), SKU #6103, $16.95

Captain's Log #42, SKU 5742, $19.95

SFB Module C3A Andromedan Threat File, SKU TBA, $TBA
Borders of Madness #1
FC Booster Pack #93, #94, #95
Battlestations Star Fleet
Romulans PD20M, SKU 8734, $24.95
Prime Directive Federation (GURPS)
Federation Commander Briefing #3, SKU 4023, $TBA
Federation Admiral, data to be determined
Star Fleet Marines: Assault!, data to be determined

Star Fleet Fiction
Part Four of ten

"Welcome aboard, Captain Jeppe," the master of the trader said. "Was your voyage successful?"
     "Very much so," Jeppe said, coming through the airlock. "We bagged two freighters in Kzinti space, and a third on this side of the border. We got that one on the way out, and have been carrying that stuff ever since. I'll be glad to unload."
     "Just the Klingon stuff?" the trader's master asked.
     "I've categorized it on this datapad," Jeppe said. "What I want to offload, and what I need to keep. What I can be caught with and what I can't be caught with. We're ready to start the transfer."
     "By all means," the trader's master said.

     "Message from Battle Station Z9, Priority code," the communications technician said. "On your screen."
     Captain Kross studied the message. "Tigermen are sending a squadron toward one of our mining colonies. All ships in the area are to get there at maximum speed.
     "Communications, acknowledge the message and include our position. Tell them we are en route.
     "Helm, take us to bearing 117 mark two and go to your best speed. Use your discretion until we have a real course.
     "Navigation, plot a medium-risk course, give it to the helm. Then calculate our time of arrival at the mining colony and give that information to me and to communications.
(Continue reading here)

Ask Admiral Growler

      Gary Bear asks: Does rule (J10.111) allow you to freely trade two single-space fighters for a single double-space fighter? In any quantity and on any ship type (frigate carriers, DW carriers, etc.)? (I, personally, feel that enough SSDs have been released using heavy fighters that this rule should only be used for carrier escorts assigned to one of those carriers.) Does it allow a player to circumvent the fighter types normally carried by the carrier? (Example, a Hydran CVE normally carries six fusion-only Stinger-2s, but converted to three Stinger-Ts gives it three fighter-mounted hellbores it never operated or had the reload boxes to arm. Another example is trading 12xF-18s for 6xA-20s.)
      ANSWER: Rule (J10.111) [and (J4.893), for that matter] allows you to substitute fighters not normally carried.

      Hugh Bishop asks: The spare shuttle listing for ships gives two numbers. I know the overall numbers are how many shuttles are available, but what do the number arrangements mean? For example; 2+3.
      ANSWER: Such an arrangement usually only occurs on ships that carry fighters. The first number is the number of spare "admin" shuttles and the second is the number of spare fighters. (See the entry "Shuttles" Explanation of Terms at the end of the Master Ship Chart.) On some ships, the number means shuttles and GAS shuttles. This is shown as 1+1G, and there will be a note explaining this in the empire section (see the notes on Seltorian ships for example). Some carriers operate heavy fighters, and the annotation "H" may follow the number for fighters to denote spare heavy fighters (or spare heavy shuttles in some cases). Some ships operate both standard fighters and heavy fighters and will often have three numbers, the first being shuttles, the second being fighters, and the third heavy fighters. See the ISC ACS for an example. This three-number arrangement is used for carriers that have two kinds of fighters. Spare fighters are usually not delineated, allowing the players some latitude in what the spares are, but they do not allow the players to break other existing rules. A Hydran Monarch-V might decide that all eight of the spare fighters are Stinger-Hs, but if he lost eight Stinger-2s, he could not break any of the spare fighters out as he can only operate six Stinger-Hs at a one time. In Module G4, ADB, Inc. might standardize the spare fighters, but for now has left that up to the players as long as the basic deployment rules are not violated.

      Stephen Brackett asks: When taking a carrier that has two different fighter types, which of the fighter types are the escorts configured to service? In this case, I have a C8V with Z-YBs and Z-HBs.
      ANSWER: The escorts will be configured for drone-armed, plasma-D-armed, or fusion-armed fighters (as appropriate to the empire), but not for photon-armed, plasma-F-armed, disruptor-armed, or hellbore-armed fighters (J4.897). There are, however, some exceptions. One of these is Hydran escorts, the other is escorts for carriers with heavy fighters.
      Hydran carrier escorts cannot be configured for hellbore fighters unless the escort ship, itself, operates hellbore fighters [currently only the Mohawk-E (R9.101) has this capability], and in that case cannot be fitted to arm more hellbore fighters than its SSD shows in accordance with (J4.8931).
      The other exception is heavy fighters. Module J2 included rule (S8.318-A) which said that escorts could not be configured for heavy fighters, but as at least one previously published scenario already allowed this, an errata item was listed for Module J2 that superseded (S8.318-A). Rule (J10.111) in the Master Rulebook includes text allowing this, but stated that such conversions were rare. What this means is that if the carrier group operates both heavy fighters and superiority fighters, the escorts will be configured to support the superiority fighters. In cases where the carrier is designed to only operate heavy fighters, e.g., scout-carriers, the escorts will be configured to support the heavy fighters. Romulan WarHawks were originally intended to operate as carriers in their own right, but were later amalgamated into groups combining one WarHawk with superiority fighters and a second with assault fighters. A WarHawk section operating independently with Gladiator-I fighters would not have an escort (BHE, SNE) that could service them due to (J4.897); such escorts could only be configured to service Gladiator-F type fighters.
(End of Ask Growler)


      Q: The Enhanced Small Scale Combat rules (323.32) allow me to take a retreat result to resolve casualties, but suppose my battle force is a mix of units which can and cannot retreat (for example, a PDU and a frigate). Can I resolve one casualty point by retreating the frigate? The rule says "all units ... retreating one hex" but the PDU cannot retreat, so does the rule mean all units able to retreat must retreat, or that no retreat is possible if one unit cannot retreat?
      A: If you take the casualty on the FF then you would not be resolving the hex and would have to repeat the ESSC round. Resolving the damage on the PDU will allow the FF to retreat, even if it was crippled since the ESSC does not have pursuit.
      Q: Suppose you have a slow unit and a ship, if you resolve a casualty as a retreat, I assume you would then retreat the ship and have a separate slow unit retreat for the slow unit, and the winner would divide his forces as he wished for pursuit?
      A: No, the ESSC resolves all combat including slow combat. The slow unit would then be retreated to the nearest retrograde point within three hexes per (302.742C).
(End of F&E Q&A)


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 100906 Module Y3 (Adobe acrobat Required)
Alert 100830 PD20M Feds (Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 100719 Fall Schedule (Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 100621 More Origins Releases (Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 100615 Origins Releases ( Adobe Acrobat Required)
Alert 100521 June Releases ( Adobe Acrobat Required)


Chlorophon Heavy Cruiser