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FOUR QUESTIONS FOR OUR CUSTOMERS
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Mike
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Joined: 07 May 2007
Posts: 1559
Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2007 2:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I realize that a huge investment has been made and "the die has been cast" in the direction of 2" - 3" miniatures for SFB/FedCom, but is it possible that there might be a market for an even smaller miniature?

Our group is very new to FedCom and we are considering investing in some miniatures. Preliminary to this, a couple of us measured some ships we already have and found that, ideally, a hexmap for playing with them should have 2" hexes. Combining two tables that we have gives a 4' x 6' playing area, but that didn't seem to be quite large enough for a decent sized map.

Then we got to talking about what-ifs. What if the miniatures were only an inch long? Sure they would be small, but they would be very usable for playing purposes. These would be miniatures for non-miniatures people.
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djdood
Fleet Captain


Joined: 01 Feb 2007
Posts: 2926
Location: Seattle, WA

PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2007 7:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There was an older series of minis called "Elite" made back in the 80's for Star Fleet Battles. They were sized to fit the "smaller" standard hex map and were roughly the size you are describing.

They were also kinda butt ugly. I'm sure it was really hard to sculpt in and successfully cast good detail at that scale. All the minis in that series had compromises in shape, proportion, etc. to make them do-able, and the ones I saw just didn't look all that great. The Fed Heavy Cruiser in particular was cringe-inducing as a scale model. As a playing piece I'm sure it was plenty fine.

I'd assume some better stuff could be done nowadays with CAD and 3D printers, but at what cost? Probably too much to make it worth doing.

You can often see these old Elite minis pop up on eBay. They're worth a peek to see.
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Steve Cole
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Joined: 11 Oct 2006
Posts: 3082

PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2007 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It would cost money to do, and I'm not convinced it would make money. It might reduce sales on the others below profitability.

But, most of what's in the product line is there because people asked. Build a fan base for something and we'll manufacture it.
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jmt
Lieutenant Commander


Joined: 08 Oct 2006
Posts: 394
Location: Plano, TX

PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2007 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"If you come, we will build it?" Very Happy

I actually like the larger-scale minis. I've purchased 2 mats w/ 2" hexes from Hotz (sp?) for the miniatures.
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eblack
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 29 May 2007
Posts: 50

PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2007 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is a less an answer to the four questions and rather, things I'd like to see or suggest. I haven't read the entire post so I don't know if any of these have been suggested.

1) I'd like to see modules containing a series of interlinked scenerios. This could be, for example, 10 battles fought during the General War between two particular battle groups of the Feds and Klingons.

The mini-campaign, if you will, could be scored across each individual scenerio and then a number of VP's for the entire campaign. So, if in scenerio #1, the Fed player gains a marginal victory then he gets X points and the Kilingon gets Y points. However during that scenerio he destroyed the Klingon flagship. Well that would have significantly changed the campaign as history knows it, so for the campaign the Fed player would get a certain number of bonus campaign points.

2) I'd like to have a comprhensive list of all of the ships available for Federation Commander after each release. This way I can verify what is available and what is the most recent version of a ship (for example, changes from the communiques).

3) Miniatures - I'd like to have the option of buying the "Federation Fleet Box" which might come with 30+ Federation-only models (3-5 Heavy cruisers, a couple of dreadnaughts, a police cruisers, etc) and have a slight discount at buying the mass of ships much like the boxes of 24 minis available now. And then also have available a Klingon fleet box, Romulan fleet box, and then perhaps the less popular races combined together.

4) I'm about to suggest something which probably crosses the line of heresy, so bare with me. I wonder if it isn't possible to capitalize on the WH40k style of play for those players who don't have the attention span for a game like SFB or FC. Fast, quick rules, the ability to customize fleets and focus on the shooting side of the game instead of the tactical play.

I have given up on SFB because I have only one local friend who is even interested in playing the game. I can get more people to play Federation Commander because the rules are simplier and the tactical play, while enjoyable, doesn't require memorization of a hundred obscure or complicated rules.

I still have a number of friends who really aren't that interested in FC, but play WH40k because of the simplicity of the game combined with the optional choices in the game. I wonder if it is not possible to capture them into a game. With that in mind, you'd probably need a different game brand which focused on fleets and squads within fleets. The loss of ships would be dictated at a faster pace (than even fleet scale rules!) and that should keep the attention of the majority of miniature players. Once they find they liked the new game, some of them may be inclined to try FC and then a few of them may even try SFB.
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djdood
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Joined: 01 Feb 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2007 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eblack -

Have you tried Star Fleet Battle Force? It's a card-based game that is more in the complexity and play-speed you are suggesting. Granted, not quite where you were going with your suggestion, but maybe helpful.
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eblack
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 29 May 2007
Posts: 50

PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2007 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes I have the game as well. It's amusing to play to kill a couple of hours, but definitely not what I'm looking for. I enjoy SFB and FC and want more people of the miniatures community to embrace the games. However, the complexity of the rules of SFB tends to force people that I know away from the game. FC is a bit lighter on the rules and so some have come into the fold. However, there is still this large group of people who won't touch the game because it tends to be a tactical game, not a shoot first - maybe move a hex or two - type of game.

I'm not suggecting that FC or SFB should be abandoned either, but rather that perhaps a larger scale game (on the order of fleet size) with less tactical requirements and more random shooting elements could bring in a larger fanbase.

I really don't know... but just a thought which might lead to a discussion which might lead to an idea.
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djdood
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2007 10:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FedCom is the "fleet scale" game in the SFU, so probably no joy there.
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eblack
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2007 4:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Probably so, but it makes the suggestion no less valid. Attempting to take a larger slice of the pie means, to me, catering to those miniature players who prefer an easier system of game play.

I, for one, welcome FC because it means I have more friends willing to play the game. I suspect, however, that more players would be interested if a game was developed for SVU that catered to an even easier rule set with a larger miniature reliance for gameplay.

Again, this is just one suggestion. I made three others as well, of which I hope are taken with all seriousness.
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terryoc
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Joined: 07 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2007 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess you could always use SFU data to make up stats for your own favourite space miniatures game. On star-ranger.com there is discussion of using ADB miniatures with other systems for Trek games, like Babylon 5 Wars or Starmada, although that's usually canon Trek rather than SFU.

[Speaking personally, I dropped WH40K because it was *too* simple.]
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Scoutdad
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Joined: 09 Oct 2006
Posts: 4470
Location: Middle Tennessee

PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2007 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

terryoc wrote:

[Speaking personally, I dropped WH40K because it was *too* simple.]


Also speaking personally and slightly off topic - the continued "dumbing down" of the WH40K rules was one of the reasons I got out of that game, also. While I don't expect everyone to want to play wargames with 400+ pages of rules (SFB / ASL) or with 1000's of counters (F&E / The Longest Day) - I do at least want more choices than "Heads - I win, Tails - I lose) which, at the rate that GW is going, the 4th edition of 40K will be about that simple.
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mjwest
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Joined: 08 Oct 2006
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Location: Dallas, Texas

PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2007 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eblack wrote:
However, there is still this large group of people who won't touch the game because it tends to be a tactical game, not a shoot first - maybe move a hex or two - type of game.


OK, I am not grokking this. If you aren't moving more than a hex or two, why not just line the ship cards up and start rolling your weapons fire? And if you aren't even moving, why are miniatures even involved?

I am not trying to be insulting, or anything. I am being serious. If you don't actually move the miniatures (and "one or two hexes" isn't really moving), why are the involved? Are they just present for display purposes?

I guess I am just confused by the request. I could understand a request to simplify the turn procedure or simplify combat. But simplify movement to the point of eliminating it? I don't get it.
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aresian
Lieutenant JG


Joined: 27 Apr 2007
Posts: 39
Location: Hermitage, TN

PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2007 9:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wonder if maybe the movement example wasn't a little off and what was meant was an I Go You Go movement instead of pulse movement.

Actually with a little work movement would be the simplest thing to simplify. Turn mode A gets 4 turns per movement, Mode D gets 1, etc.. Speed is determined as 3/(Movement Cost). So at movement cost 1/4 you get 12 inches of movement per turn and 1+1/2 would get 2 inches. You now have the movement system for what I'd call Federation Commander: Kindergarten.
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junior
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 06, 2007 11:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Turn mode arcs exist that can be used in hexless games, though I don't know where you'd find them these days. The ones I saw were in the Commander's Edition of Starfleet Battles, but that's long out of print. And I don't remember if they got moved to the Captain's Edition or not.
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Scoutdad
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Joined: 09 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 07, 2007 12:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

a set of minture turn gauges (for use with hexless movement) can be found at:
www.starfleetgames.com/fcindex

Click the Commanders Circle link, log-in, and click the resources link.

The turn gauges are near the bottom of the page.
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