Federation Commander Forum Index Federation Commander
A NEW fast paced board game of starship combat!
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Some 'era' ramblings...
Goto page 1, 2  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Federation Commander Forum Index -> Star Fleet Battles
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
gambler1650
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 30 Mar 2009
Posts: 71

PostPosted: Mon Apr 27, 2009 5:27 pm    Post subject: Some 'era' ramblings... Reply with quote

I've been thinking lately about the kinds of battles I like in Star Fleet Battles, and the kind of 'era'. I've decided that I prefer the Middle Years to Y170+ or so. Yeah, that's a rather large range and covers most of the ships in the game, but there are some fairly specific time periods within this range that I like:

1. I like the pre-refit ships of the 'Middle Years'. In this era, the different races actually feel different. The ships have design deficiencies that would later be corrected. The races have different classes, or at least their ships in each class don't all correspond quite so closely in capabilities to the other races. Once you reach the General War, the races start to homogenize. Everyone has carriers, everyone has PFs, everyone has pretty much every War Cruiser variant. Yeah, there are some variances between the races due to weapons and due to Hydrans almost always having fighters for every ship and Lyrans always being able to carry PFs, etc, but in general the ships are well balanced with few obvious holes in their capabilities. Another benefit of the Middle Years vessels is that pretty much all of the weapons and firing options for the main races are available unlike the Early Years. I maintain that this time period is the one where piloting skill is the most important due to having almost all the same options of a later period, while having to deal with weaknesses and strengths of your ships and your opponents' ships that aren't as prevalent in later eras.

2. I like Y168+ because I like Kzintis... Smile Mmmm, speed 20 drones. I actually tend to think that Speed 32 drones are boring, plus at least in Y168 or so, the homogenization of the different races isn't quite so prevalent.

Two other eras I like:

The X1 era: I especially like the period where X technology is new, leading to X ships against non-X ships. But then I love asymmetrical battles in general.

Early Years: The races definitely don't have perfectly balanced fleet lists, and seeing a variety of different weapons plus races that disappeared before the Middle Years is a lot of fun. I really do miss overloaded weapons though and think that the Early Years era really points out how much more dynamic a battle is when overloaded weapons are available.

Really nothing major in the above post, just some generic ramblings at lunch. Wink
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mjwest
Commodore


Joined: 08 Oct 2006
Posts: 3477
Location: Dallas, Texas

PostPosted: Mon Apr 27, 2009 9:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, if you like Federation Commander, we have just the product for you: Briefing #2: The Middle Years! It is exactly what you have described. It has 72 ships in all of their unrefitted glory, and the information on what other companions you can use in that setting. (Drones are speed 16, not 20 or 24, though ...)

I like the Early Years, too. I enjoy the weird matchups, and seeing some of the dissimilar tactics required. And in the Early Years, a Pl-G becomes a weapon to be feared! Smile
_________________

Federation Commander Answer Guy
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
MajerBlundor
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 03 Apr 2009
Posts: 123

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 12:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is there a single document that an FC player can use to learn about the service dates of FC ships? I know that in theory FC blends all of the SFB dates into one lump but obviously with Briefing 2 that design concept is going by the wayside to some degree (which I don't mind personally.)

I've tried figuring this out from the time line and ship descriptions but there must be a better way.

And FWIW I agree with the OP. I prefer greater contrast between the empires and even "lower tech" ships. Fighters and such just don't do it for me. Brutal broadsides is where it's at! Very Happy
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mjwest
Commodore


Joined: 08 Oct 2006
Posts: 3477
Location: Dallas, Texas

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 2:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There still isn't really a timeline. There are no "service dates" in Federation Commander, even with the introduction of Briefing #2. If the ships are available in the setting, they are available. If they are not available in the setting, they are not available.

So, a ships like the Federation DNG and DNH which followed each other in SFB, are just "available" in Federation Commander. We don't worry about when to phase in the DW or NCA. They are just "available".

There still aren't any service dates.
_________________

Federation Commander Answer Guy
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Ravenhull
Lieutenant Commander


Joined: 28 Jan 2007
Posts: 231
Location: Mobile, AL

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 3:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you really want to do service dates for your local play of FC, you can pick up a copy of G3:Master Annexes, which has the entire current SFB Master Ship Chart. On the other hand, that is about $30 bucks for something like that.

I am almost tempted, the powers that be willing, to compose a quick reference list for those non-SFB players who would like the info in excel format. I won't even contemplate it without official approval, though, but being a 'player made' resource would prevent people from trying to force it on other players as they might if it was generated by SVC and company for FC. (Ya gotta make end runs around the rules lawyers at times.)
_________________
NOLI UMQUAM VIM TURBARUM STULTORUM DEPRETIARE.

Donovan Willett, USS Alabama
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Yahoo Messenger
Steve Cole
Site Admin


Joined: 11 Oct 2006
Posts: 3051

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 1:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In theory, such a "chart" would be possible. Just take the excel documents from G3 and delete all of the columns except ship and service year and then delete all of the ships not in FC (90% of them).

Even so, I don't have time, Petrick doesn't have time, and neither of us will have time until after Origins. Even then, I'm not so sure we even want such a chart to exist (no matter who does it). I think it's vastly simpler with the FC system. There are two settings (Middle Years and General War) and ships are either available or they are not. If anybody posted such a "year by year" chart I think it would push people who would never use it to actually start using it and that would disrupt the FC concept of simplicity.
_________________
The Guy Who Designed Fed Commander
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
MajerBlundor
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 03 Apr 2009
Posts: 123

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since it's primarily a "pre-game" fluff reference how would it increase in-game complexity? Does the service date have some in-game effect in SFB?

As far as I can imagine that single data point (service date) seems no more complex than the ship's point value for scenario planning purposes (and far, far, far less complex than the sub-pulse and accel/decel rules and far, far less of a change compared to BoM).

Even Flames of War prints Early/Middle/Late War period icons on their blister packs and boxed sets to help players build their forces.

Heck, sounds like something that can be printed on a ship's card.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Bolo_MK_XL
Commander


Joined: 16 Jan 2007
Posts: 785
Location: North Carolina

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 2:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FoW is considered a Historical Game
SFB could be considered Historical, in its own way
FC is the non-historical version of SFB

As SVC is fond of pointing out, you can fund it if you want something different that requires a new printing ---
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
MajerBlundor
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 03 Apr 2009
Posts: 123

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 2:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bolo_MK_XL wrote:

FC is the non-historical version of SFB


Hmmm...then I'm REALLY confused by the just released Briefing #2: The Middle Years.

Based on the title I assumed it was a collection of ships from a specific SFU "historical" period.

If that's correct, then it sounds very close to Battlefront's E/M/L approach for Flames of War.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
djdood
Fleet Captain


Joined: 01 Feb 2007
Posts: 2922
Location: Seattle, WA

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is a collection of ships from an historical period. FedCom just doesn't place any limits on when and how you can use them (unlike SFB, which is pretty timeline-driven).
_________________
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Dal Downing
Commander


Joined: 06 May 2008
Posts: 552
Location: Western Wisconsin

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MajerBlundor wrote:
Since it's primarily a "pre-game" fluff reference how would it increase in-game complexity? Does the service date have some in-game effect in SFB?


Yes it does. In SFB the Year of a Sceniero is set determins everything from Ship Types that can be used as you have to consider if... A) The Ship was in Service Prior to the date, and B) What Ship Classes are retired and removed from play by this date. From there, there can be a hour or more worth of work just getting to the point that the first ship actually can move. You have to determining everything from Drone Builds, to Commander Options, to Fighter Availabilty and Fighter Load Out. Just to mention a few.

As SVC said he intends for FC to stay a fast pace quick to set up and play game. When you start putting Information out there that includes things like Year in Service you just opened up a entry point for a lot of complexity that Fed Com was intended to avoid. If you are looking for a greater degree of complexity you really should check out SFB because trust me... It.. Has.. It... ALL!!!! Twisted Evil

Though there is a "Middle Years" Briefing notice there is not a rush (and may never be...) to put it out with Color Laminated Cards and its own Counter Set. It was made avaiable because we as customers wanted it, not to signal a change in ADBs philosiphy on what FedCom is suppose to be.
_________________
-Dal

"Which one of you is the Biggest, Baddest, Bootlicker of the bunch?"
"I am."
"ARCHERS!!! THAT ONE!!!!"

Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Mike
Captain


Joined: 07 May 2007
Posts: 1530
Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I envision happening with the "eras" in Federation Commander would go something like this...

Tom says, "Hey, let's play Federation Commander!"

Frank says, "Okay. How about a game during the Middle Years?"

Tom says, "That's fine with me. I've been wanting to try out some new tactics with those ships anyway."

They select a scenario, pull out the ships with Middle Years stamped on them, and play.

That's it. Nothing else.

There doesn't have to be a year-in-service and five different refit versions of a ship class to pour over and decide about.

But none of this means that more SFU history can't be included in Federation Commander. I was pleasantly surprised about the amount of specific history that was included in Briefing #2 when I purchased it and read through it.

I see nothing wrong with including more events tied to particular eras in Federation Commander.

Now that we've looked back with the Middle Years, a future possibility might be to look forward into the "X-era". No new ship counters would really be needed...just use the existing ones (just like Briefing #2). All that would be needed are the decisions as to which X-ship rules would be included in Federation Commander and how they would mesh with the game system. This might just give incentive to some of those new players are are looking for and expecting to find the alphabet soup versions of our favorite Federation heavy cruiser in Federation Commander...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
MajerBlundor
Lieutenant SG


Joined: 03 Apr 2009
Posts: 123

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 9:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mike wrote:
What I envision happening with the "eras" in Federation Commander would go something like this...

Tom says, "Hey, let's play Federation Commander!"

Frank says, "Okay. How about a game during the Middle Years?"

Tom says, "That's fine with me. I've been wanting to try out some new tactics with those ships anyway."

They select a scenario, pull out the ships with Middle Years stamped on them, and play.

That's it. Nothing else.


Mike,

Perfect! That was exactly what I was thinking!

If my 7 and 8 year old boys can handle Warhammer 40K army lists I don't see how a ship's period in service is any more "complex" than their point value (it's very entertaining watching my boys angst over the points budget..."Dad, can we go up to 165 points? There's this Romulan cruiser...")

Besides which the whole "FC is simpler" thing is already less true than the original concept. We now have a period-specific publication (Briefing #2) and will have an expansion into fighters and other exotic technology with BoM. And of course there's the whole "sub-pulse/+1 accel/-3 decel" rule which tries to straddle a simpler move system while maintaining the original 32-impulse turn (we've simply reduced the number of firing opportunities and the need for pre-plots).

That's not to say I reject the simpler-is-better approach. In fact, we use house rules to make things even simpler and will ignore stuff like BoM.

But using fluff is a low-drag way to enhance player experience while not introducing additional in-game complexity. And as with any other rule one is always free to ignore it but it's easier to ignore a rule such as "Period in Service" than a core rule like fighter functionality.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Scoutdad
Commodore


Joined: 09 Oct 2006
Posts: 4463
Location: Middle Tennessee

PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2009 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But there you're misunderstanding the BoM concept.

Borders of Madness is not designed to add a layer of complexity to Fed Comm...
It's designed to add a layer of simplicity to Star Fleet Battles.

The premise of BoM is to allow veteran SFB players to integrate some of Fed Comm's concepts into their games.
Want to fight a Starbase Assault using fleet scale units... then those units (which are already available) can be used, along with BoM rules for EW, fighters, carriers, maulers, etc.

Now, will some players use BoM to add their favorite rules to their FC games, undoubtedly! But since thye are not now (and never will be) a part of Federation Commander - there should be no dissention about what rules do we use when playing Fedration Commander at conventions and similar events.
_________________


Scoutdad's minis photos here!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Yahoo Messenger
Mike
Captain


Joined: 07 May 2007
Posts: 1530
Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: Wed Apr 29, 2009 2:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought "Star Fleet Battles: Revolutions" (or some such title) was supposed to be the product to add some of the simplicity and speed of the FedComm game system to SFB???

I'm not disagreeing that BoM is NOT Federation Commander, but let's face it...BoM is supposed to take rules from SFB and put them into the Federation Commander game system. Maybe it doesn't really matter because both SFB and FedComm are being merged in some ways in BoM.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Federation Commander Forum Index -> Star Fleet Battles All times are GMT
Goto page 1, 2  Next
Page 1 of 2

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group