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PD ships and other ADB product questions
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Lieutenant JG

Joined: 25 Jul 2011
Posts: 60

PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 2:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve Cole wrote:
The fundametal issue here is that a ship is not a group of people. It's a vehicle, and it goes where the captain says it goes.

In a group of five people, or a brigade of five thousand people, if the commander says "go over there" then some will get ahead of the group, others will lag behind, still others will hide and not go at all, and some will get lost along the way.

On a starship (or a wet navy warship for the matter), the "bridge crew" are just functionaries. They do't make decisions, they just apply their skill to whtever the captain said to do. Gunners don't pick targets; they target what the captain wants killed. Really, RPG for a bridge crew has got to be the most boring form of gaming imaginable. You aren't playing the game at all, you're just a die rolling machine for the captain.

I'm just saying, that's how it is.

If you haven't tried it...

I have, my players enjoyed it. Because I made certain that the setup was such that they had meaningful decisions to make.
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Site Admin

Joined: 18 Sep 2008
Posts: 1310

PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

aramis, that is why SVC has me to edit the RPGs for ADB. Smile He keeps the universe logical; I try to make sure the RPGers have fun.

And that is why my scenarios for FC (when they are accepted) are usually taken from transcribing Olivette Roche or Michelle Less trivideos (or more recently Jena Biblios's tales). There's no way they could really happen that way ... at least according the main Air Force tapes. But what I find ... well, it leaves the Steves -> Shocked
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Lieutenant JG

Joined: 09 Jul 2011
Posts: 31

PostPosted: Thu Jul 28, 2011 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All in all I pretty much got the answer of my question. My group is relatively small (6 people) so we could set up the GURPS RPG session without any trouble and keep the SFB for:

1) We are missing too many people;
2) To work out the outcome of space combat relevent to the RPG story, where players would be in control of 1 ship each...or 2 to a ship.

Giving a small change of pace from time to time and -since they are also boardgamers, wargamers and miniaturist- they will enjoy the occasional change of pace.
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Rich Stokes
Lieutenant JG

Joined: 22 Jul 2009
Posts: 26
Location: Southampton, England

PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 12:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To add to the voices:

When we play, we use a fairly mashed up system using various components from various versions of FATE. I do some writing for StarBlazer Adventures, so using FATE to run games set of spaceships is quite natural to us. We use background from several PD sources (the Gurps ones, generally), but all system elements are either from various FATE games or written by me.

When space combat occurs, we use something like the abstract system from Diaspora. Range is determined based on what's going on in the game's fiction, but is often modified by various characters making rolls, usually the helmsman. The helmsman is not always someone's main PC, so this might just be whoever happens to fancy controlling him for the moment.

Combat works fairly effectively. when you realise that it's the players (not the characters) who're deciding what their ship is going to do, it's fairly easy. Yes, within the fiction it's captain Jill Blakeman who's calling the shots, but in reality it's not just Claire (who mainly plays Captain Blakeman) who decides what their cruiser will do, it's everyone. Once they've decided (usually no more than a few seconds), the captain speaks her orders and the other characters go about carrying them out. The gunners gun, the helmsman manoeuvres etc. The players controlling the various bridge crew make the rolls, but FATE has an interesting way of making even that fun, with players narrating what they do and calling in various Aspects to help.

(Aspects are one of FATE's mechanics which helps make games more interesting for the players and for the GM, and helps make things work the way we want them to. That is, in combination with Fate Points give the player characters that edge which characters in fiction have which keeps them alive when it's not entirely realistic for them to survive. Like the lucky breaks characters on TV and in books often have.)

Overall, it's quick, effective and helps shape the stories of the game. Space combat is not really a staple of the game we play, but it's quite fun when it happens. A recent showdown between the players FED CA and a Klingon D7 lasted about 5 game turns, which was about 12 minutes? Most of that was the captains gloating and trying th psyche each other out to be honest.

FATE's very sort of "new school" (for want of a better phrase) and not going to be for everyone, but it suits what we want very well.
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