STAR FLEET BATTLES

INPUT GUIDE- CL25

INPUT GUIDE: CAPTAIN'S LOG 25

STORIES vs. SCENARIOS

    Every story in Captain's Log needs to include an SFB scenario, and use plausible SFB tactics. We can do the scenario for you if the story includes a battle. Every story in Module Prime needs to use plausible GURPS game mechanics, and we can do the sample characters and adventure seeds for you if you don't want to do them yourself. Some really short stories (two or three pages) could be done without scenarios if they were really good stories. In theory, a longer story might be so darn cool that we would print it even if no scenario could be written for it.

    If your story is interesting and plausible, any other problems can be dealt with. We recently published a story that was so badly punctuated that no paragraph had less than six errors, but it was a good story and we can fix punctuation easier than we can fix a badly-scripted but well-punctuated story.

HOW CAPTAIN'S LOG GETS DONE

    Doing a Captain's Log consists of five months of unorganized "preparation" and two weeks of intensive "assembly". During the month of preparation, no end of scenarios, ships, stories, rules, and articles are received, reviewed, and (if good) filed for later use. A staff conference about two months out is used to make sure that the right things got "prepared" and that all of the "bins" have something in them. Petrick starts Battle Group then.

    When it comes time to assemble the issue, we start with a "fill in the blank" form that includes all of the departments. We select the major elements (fiction, SSDs, Anarchist, victory articles) two months or more ahead when possible. The outside department heads (PBEM, SFBOL, Warlord, Galactic Conquest, Early Years, Prime Directive, SFBF) are given a few week's warning to get their articles in, and we have months of collected notes about things that the issue needs to cover. Sometimes, a given slot (class history, example, tactical primer, developmental history, or scenarios) has an article or two that was finished during the preparation period, and sometimes we have to create one during those final weeks (such as the scenarios for the stories).

    Some of the in-house elements (tournament reports, ten questions, Growler, humor, Why?, proposals) are collected over a period of time; others (Command the Future, Shipyard) are created on the spot as needed. The After Action reports are compiled over several months and finalized just before we go to press. term papers and Tactical Notes are collected for months, graded in batches, and used in the order of the highest grades.

    The last two weeks usually involve about ten days of "where are we going to find enough stuff to fill this issue?" followed by four days "how are we going to make all of this fit?" We've done this eight times since ADB incorporated, and it works pretty well.

    The point is that you should aim your proposals for a category, not an issue. Do a ship, a scenario, a tactical primer, or an article and let us get it into a "bin". Sooner or later, it gets used, usually sooner since if we have something for a given "slot" we spend our time creating things we don't have.

    You might also want to send suggestions or requests to be put into the "notes" file. This includes suggestions for example articles or class histories, requests for articles on certain subjects, and reminders of promises we made.

Copyright 1999-2004 Amarillo Design Bureau, All Rights Reserved

Updated 19 November 2004