Having gotten in a regular game for Y159, our group now advances to Y160 in the SFU timeline. This is where SFB originally 'started', as a lot of early materials assumed the game was set right after the original series, during the five-year missions of a couple Federation heavy cruisers. So every year from here to the end of the timeline has at least a couple scenarios and new ships showing up.
Here's my summary of the year:
The Original Series: The 5-year mission of the original Star Trek series is considered to be Y155-Y160.
The Four Powers War: There's not a lot of detail for this year, but the initial drives are petering out, and the war is threatening to turn into a stalemate, though with Coalition gains.
SH3 (BS) The Coming of the Meteor Federation Klingon
SH53 (S1) Border Incident Federation Romulan Gorn
SH76 (R3) Quarantine Federation Klingon
SH176 (M) Kobol's Rock Klingon Kzinti
SH191 (R6) Returning to the Scene of the Crime Federation Orion
Showing the TOS roots of this period, the Federation is involved in four of the five scenarios for this year, and Klingons are in three of them.
SH3 The Coming of the Meteor: This is one of the original scenarios of the game, and should be good for an afternoon at some point.
SH53 Border Incident: Romulan KRs (and a WB) vs. Federation ships. I'm not sure when or with who I'll play it, but there's Romulans with Tac Warp, and we're going to see them in action!
SH76 Quarantine: A CLH has to hold off an F5J while trying to cure a disease and evacuate a colony. Could be very unusual.
SH176 Kobol's Rock: This is a ground-combat only scenario, using the more detailed rules in Module M. To my surprise, Mark expressed interest in it.
SH191 Returning to the Scene of the Crime: Something of a typical Orion scenario, showing off the FLG.
Federation FFG CAR
Romulan K5R KR VUL+
Kzinti FH SDF DD BC
Tholian PR CA
WYN OLR OCR OFC
ISC POL FF DD SC CL SR TUG CA
WYN Shipyard: The WYN government allows the Orion Cluster Cartel to set up a shipyard within the cluster. In return, the WYN get some of the LRs an CRs produced there, and convert the first CR into the OFC, a short-range cluster-defense flagship.
New Hull: The Kzinti DD is an all-new design, with good power, firepower, and shields for its size. For the moment, it is a better ship than the larger CL, though it would get a decent refit, and the DD is already maxed out.
Early refits: The Federation and Kzinti both start a round of improvements to existing ship classes this year. The Federation starts installing rear-firing ph-1s on CAs, and extra power on FFs. The Kzintis upgrade a damaged CS to the first BC this year, taking it past the capabilities of the existing CA design.
[It has been noted that Type-G drone racks don't exist yet, and the FFG should have a later date; instead, this would be the FF+, possibly with an ADD in place of the drone rack, but a one-box change just hasn't been worth ADB's time.]
Heavier variants: Both the Lyrans and Kzinti try getting more out of their frigates this year. The Kzinti FH is meant as a refit for the FF, but as it suffers from shock, remains a rare variant/squadron leader. The Lyrans develop a slightly larger center section to create the HFF. Tholian CAs are a C with more disruptor mounts, allowed by recent improvements to their ship-welding techniques.
Kestrals: The Klingons have been delivering older D6 and F5 hulls to the Romulans, who have reworked them to use Romulan technology, creating the "KR" or "Kestral" series of ships.
Hellbores: Hydran deployment of hellbore torpedoes continues, with the new Lord Marshal command cruiser, which replaces two of the Lord Commander's fusion beams with hellbores.
Drone Bombardment: The Kzinti combine their scout frigate and drone frigate designs into a single hull, the SDF. The DF either needs a SF or a larger drone bombardment ship (like the CD or CLD) to lead it on a drone raid for targeting. The SDF can handle this job on its own.
Heavy Scouts: The Klingons use a D6 for a dedicated scout platform, allowing it to provide good EW coverage while remaining combat-worthy.
ISC: During this year, an ISC ship witnesses a fight between Romulan and Gorn starships, and the ISC finds out that war is still very much a thing in the rest of the galaxy. All the major ISC classes have an intro date of Y160, though there probably should be some variation (most likely, the POL would pre-date this for monster patrols and the like).
A blog for all subjects related to the Star Fleet Universe from ADB Inc. Talking about the games, the background, or its relationship with regular [i]Star Trek[/i].
- [+] Dice rolls
Somewhat to my surprise, after Patch and I finished up "Arctic Crossroads" he suggested an SFB game. He wanted smaller ships, and something other than Klingons, so I looked to a Kzinti-Lyran fight (appropriate as they're also involved in the Four Powers War right now) with squadrons using ships smaller than CAs.
The Kzinti produce their first Destroyer in Y159 (our current playing date), and I certainly wanted to show it off, as I don't think it appears in many scenarios. It's mostly known as an 'also ran' ship, as production is halted in favor of the later Medium Cruiser, and it is relegated to second-line duty during the General War. But right now, it is brand new, and effectively the one of the most advanced designs around, and certainly the best ship the Kzinti have for the tonnage. At a Move Cost of 1/2, it has 24 power, 2xdisruptors, 4xph-1, 2xph-3, and 4xdrone racks. This is more power and firepower than the larger Light Cruiser class, which it is effectively replacing (the CL will be refitted to have more power, more disruptors, and bring its drone racks up to 4, but that's a few years away still). It shows a shift from ph-3 to ph-1s, and an increase in drone throw weight (eventually, just about all Kzinti ships have at least four drone racks, but until now, that's only been true on the much larger CS/CA/CC hull as well as the seven racks on the much larger DNE).
Then I chose a Lyran Light Cruiser to lead the opposite squadron. It has the exact same BPV as the DD (after adjusting for the lack of ESG capacitors), and while larger with more internals, and it has slightly better phasers (4xph-1, 4xph-3), coverage isn't quite as good, and its shields are slightly weaker than the DD's.
Both sides' squadrons were rounded out by a pair of frigates, which also happen to have the exact same BPV, and fairly similar characteristics. Patch, as it turned out, went for a full load of Type-II (speed 12) drones, with no larger Type-Vs, for a total cost of 16 BPV. I vaguely contemplated taking some transporter bombs, and I should have, but neither of us took any.
We set up, and rolled randomly for Weapon Status (with a +1 for a war zone), and ended up with WS III. That was to my advantage, as the Kzinti don't have any multi-turn weapons, and it meant my ESGs were already fully charged. I also had a suicide shuttle pre-charged on the CL. The Kzinti squadron went speed 15 for the first turn, as did my CL, while my FFs went 16. We simply closed the range for the first half of the turn, but the DD turned off at about range 25. During impulses 28-30, we fired as ships hit range 15. I stuck to disruptors, which all missed with six straight 5s. Patch launched half his drones on each ship, and volleyed all his disruptors, which all missed with three 6s and a 4, while four phasers he fired also missed on "better" rolls (two 3s and two 4s). On impulse 32, I turned towards the Kzinti FFs to see if could engage them separately from the DD.
With ranges coming down fast, I decided to put power into overloads on CL, and EW on the FFs, and went speed 9 for the CL and speed 13 on the FFs. Meanwhile, Patch sped up to 19 on his FFs while the DD stayed 15. Patch was surprised I hadn't boosted speed as well, which I had considered, but I wanted to be prepared for a close-range pass (and the FFs stayed on regular disruptors in case something like this happened). Sadly, I only had slightly better EW than Patch, but it meant I would have even shots at his FFs while everyone else was at a +1 to fire at each other.
Patch's FFs turned off on Impulse 4, confirming my fears that he would just dance around my slower-moving squadron this turn. On Impulse 10, I turned towards the gap between Patch's forces and starting warming up an ESG to tackle the wave of drones that was in there. To my surprise, Patch turned his DD in shortly after, allowing me to get closer to it. Things started coming to a head on Impulse 15, when my FF-1 started sweeping the drones with its ESG, and my FF-2 and the DD traded shots. Both ships hit with one disruptor, and missed with the other, and had similar phaser rolls, though the ph-2s on my FF led to less damage being done.
On Impulse 18, I turned towards the DD, as it turned back away, launching its last two drones for the turn (the other racks had staggered fire over the previous few impulses). The DD scored another 4 points on the front shield of FF-2 with the 360-phasers, while the CL did 15 points to shield #3 of the DD, hitting with both disruptors and one good phaser roll (a second phaser missed entirely...). The next impulse, FF-2 announced its ESG, and I fired another three phasers at the DD. FF-1's phaser missed, but the remaining ph-1s on the CL both rolled 1s to knock down the shield and do 5 internals, including a ph-3 and two power. That was pretty much it for the turn, though on Impulse 28, the two Kzinti FFs fired disruptors at my FF-1, with one hitting, and on the next couple impulses, they launched drones.
Patch's FFs slowed to speed 16 for Turn 3, but everything else sped up, with his DD going 20, while my CL went 15, and the FFs got up to 17. Speeding up meant dropping some of my EW, and the FFs only powered one disruptor each, as they started trickling power into the ESGs. I was mostly planning on trying to get the ESGs partly charged before having another real pass, and Patch was going faster than I could really catch him anyway. As soon as they cleared to fire, the Kzinti FFs fired their disruptors at the CL, hitting with one for 6 damage on shield #5, and then turned in a couple impulses later. Phaser fire knocked down the shield, but didn't get any internals. Meanwhile, I maneuvered to keep away from the wave of drones and shut down the ESGs (which each had a couple points of damage left) so I could bring them back up earlier next turn. On Impulse 25, Patch launched another two drones from the DD, and my FFs fired their powered disruptors at his FF-1, but missed with both.
Both of us were feeling out of position this turn. Patch had wanted to reunite his squadron, but the FFs were still 16 hexes from the DD (though at least I was now far behind both sets of ships), and my attempt to avoid spending power by just avoiding the drone wave from his FFs kept me from being able to engage them when they got a bit close. Instead, I lost a shield on the CL and didn't do anything in return.
For Turn 4, Patch sprinted his FFs at 25, while the DD slowed to 15. However, I stayed a speed 15 for the CL, while the FFs dropped by 1 to speed 16. The phasers were completely charged, the FF's ESGs were each up to 3 power, and the FFs were able to charge both disruptors this time. EW fell off for both of us this turn, with 1 or 2 points of ECM and no ECCM on all ships. Looking at the long ranges and his high speeds, I fired all the FFs' disruptors at his FF-1 on Impulse 3, hitting with two of them.
I successfully left the previous wave of drones behind, but got into trouble with the two drones the DD launched last turn. Not paying enough attention, I ended up two hexes away with them with my FFs scheduled to move at the same time as the drones; I killed them with two phaser-3 shots each, but only after using a lab to figure out which FF they were targeted on, and play with the movement. Patch turned in towards me at the last third of the turn, and the range started dropping fast. Patch fired most everything on Impulse 25, with the FFs knocking down shield #3 on my FF-2, while the DD's disruptors did six points to the #1. With his FFs coming in fast, I turned towards them, which prompted drone launches, and then the DD turned in to close with the still separated FFs, and launched a full spread of four drones. In response, both of my FFs announced ESGs (which wouldn't go up until Impulse 1 of the next turn, when they'd have further power from my EA).
On Impulse 28, both sides opened fire, with Patch's two FFs each firing a ph-1 at my FF-2, doing 2 internals through the #1 shield. Meanwhile my CL fired its disruptors, 2xph-1, and FF-2 fired 2xph-2s at his FF-2. Ironically, the closer FF-2 missed with both, while the CL had good rolls to do 13 damage, and knock down the #6 shield.
I was a little surprised when the FF moved on the next impulse and it slipped away, but did not turn the down shield away. I fired FF-1's ph-2s at it, but poor rolls did no damage. On Impulse 32, both FFs turned in, going for a point-blank run with my FFs, with plenty of drones right there. With Turn 5 starting at everyone at close range, speeds dropped. My CL went 12, with the FFs going 10, while the DD went 14, though the Kzinti FFs slowed to 9. My CL put up 3 ECM, and 1 ECCM, but that was the only EW active. The ESGs came up on Impulse 1 (at 4 power) with the drones a hex away, but I shot up a couple of them anyway to preserve the ESGs for later and possible further drone launches.
...And FF-1 launched a new drone the next Impulse. The CL announced an ESG on Impulse 3, and my FF-2 moved onto his FF-2's down shield #6, but missed on a disruptor shot at range 2. On Impulse 4, both of his FFs slipped left, and my FF-2 moved into the hex, hitting them with it's strength-12 ESG, and FF-1 slipped to line up a similar shot. However, Patch tractored my FFs with his, more or less halting my planned battle pass (and, annoyingly, tractoring my FF-1 with his FF-2, and vice versa), and launched two more drones. I immediately knocked them down with ph-3 fire from FF-2, and did one internal to his FF-2 with horrible rolls (6,6) from a pair of ph-2s. My FF-2 took 29 internals from a ph-1 and overloaded disruptor from each of his FFs. (And I just realized that we missed doing the feedback damage of range-0 disruptors. Not a big deal for his FF-1, but that's another 2 internals on FF-2.) This pretty much crippled my FF, though it had decent weapons left.
On Impulse 5, the CL announced its second ESG, Patch's FF-2 did 7 damage to the #1 of FF-1 with a pair of ph-3s, and I did 10 internals to FF-2 with an overloaded disruptor from FF-1. On 6, the CL turned to engage the DD, while two drones hit FF-1's ESG, leaving 8 strength on it. Patch launched the final available drone, transported 3 boarding parties onto FF-2, and launched shuttles from both FFs. This time his FF-1 fired ph-3s, doing 7 more damage, and almost knocking down my FF-1's #1. I knocked down the latest drone with a ph-3, and did five more internals to his FF-2 from a disruptor fired by FF-1.
On Impulse 7, the DD approached to range 1 of the CL and tractored it while launching a full set of drones it just as a range 0 ESG came up. The DD fired off almost everything, doing 15 internals to the CL. The CL responded in kind, but missed with an overloaded disruptor to only do 7 internals. The CL mostly lost padding, but did lose the #2 ESG before it could even come up. FF-1 plinked his FF-2 for another three internals, but still wasn't getting the hits I wanted (I'd really been hoping to knock out the tractor beam). On Impulse 8, Patch dropped his tractor on my FF-1, and fired a ph-1 at each of my ships with a spare on each of his ships. This merely damaged shields on the FFs, but the CL took another 4 internals, and lost a disruptor. Meanwhile, the remaining-ph-3s on the CL took out all but one drone from the second wave from the DD, leaving it with a 4-point ESG and one drone left for it to handle. On the next Impulse, Patch dropped the tractor on FF-2, and transported three boarding parties over to the CL.
With them released from tractors, my FFs moved on Impulse 10, and FF-1 slipped in to hit Patch's FF-2 for eight points with the ESG (on the intact shield #2, sadly), and followed it up with a ph-1 and 2xph-3 shot at range 0 with good dice to do 10 internals. At this point, it only had the 360 ph-1 and a drone rack left, and all three front shields were down. On Impulse 14, Patch's shuttles are clear to fire, and they do 3 points to shield #4 of FF-2. On 15, Patch drops the tractor on the CL, which is very fortuitous timing for him. Otherwise, I would have launched the suicide shuttle which would have traveled down the tractor beam on 16 and detonated. If he'd released earlier, I may have been able to maneuver to drop the shuttle on him at this point. If I'd launched earlier, it would have smacked into the ESG before it got the drone. As it was, I never got a good chance to use it.
All shot out, we slowly worked apart for the rest of the turn; Patch kept together, but I was still trying to re-form at the end of the turn. Patch's boarding parties killed two of the four on FF-2, while I only killed one in return. On the CL, his three BPs didn't do any damage, while the nine there wiped him out.
The CL dropped to speed 9 for Turn 6 as it struggled to recharge batteries, patch up shields and put some power into the phasers and ESG. FF-1 went speed 10 with similar problems, while FF-2 was down to 5 power. It only went speed 4, partly because I charged the remaining disruptor. The DD went speed 10, Patch's FF-1 12, and his FF-2, with power but no weapons, 16. In addition, his FF-2 was only using minimum shields, and mine was using Low-Power Fire Control. On Impulse 1, Patch's FF-2 fired a drone from the remaining drone rack before pulling out of the fight. On 5, FF-2 fired the disruptor at his FF-1, but missed. On 8, Patch launched drones from the DD and FF-1, while my FF-1 fired disruptors at the DD as it went out of arc and hit with one. On Impulse 10, FF-1 fired a pair of ph-3s at a shuttle, and crippled it, though there had been good odds of killing it.
The other shuttle fired on the next impulse, doing 4 points to FF-1's #6, and the CL hit with both disruptors on the DD's #4. The latest wave of drones became a real problem as I struggled to get FF-1 in range to help the CL (who was definitely the target) deal with them. The CL got one on Impulse 17 with a downfired phaser. Then I turned the CL so that it would start drawing the drones closer to FF-1.
This was a mistake, as it also turned the down #1 towards the Kzinti, who were 8 hexes away at that point.
On Impulse 19, his FF-1 hit with a disruptor and ph-1, doing 7 internals through the down #1, taking out 3 phasers and the remaining ESG. On Impulse 22, the CL downfired the remaining ph-1s at the drones, and killed 2. FF-1 killed the damaged one and the fourth on the following impulse. At the same time, the DD and Patch's FF-1 fired on my FF-1, hitting with two disruptors and a ph-1 to do six internals through the #6 shield, knocking out two phasers. On 26, the DD and FF-1 each fired another ph-1 to do 5 more internals through the #1 shield of my FF-1, getting 4 hull... and the ESG. The next impulse, the DD fired two more ph-1s to do 8 internals to FF-1, taking out another phaser and a disruptor.
Boarding party combat continued on FF-2 with both sides killing one boarding party to reduce both to one BP left. The CL emergency repaired the second disruptor as a range-10 version.
Somewhat by happenstance, all my ships ended up going speed 12 for Turn 7. The CL had lost three power on Turn 5, and one more on 6, and was slowly putting some shields back together. FF-1 had only lost two power, but needed to recharge the remaining phasers, while FF-2 abandoned the disruptor and went max speed other than shields. The DD went 10, Patch's FF-1 went 12, and his FF-2 went 18. His intact ships put up one point each of ECM and ECCM, but I had no power to spare for EW.
After the big pass on turn 5, my plan was to stick around; I was in about as good shape as Patch's squadron, and FF-2 could be a decent phaser boat, while Patch made it obvious that his was leaving. After losing all my ESGs and a number of ph-3s last turn at was at a serious disadvantage as long as Patch's drones held out. So I started preparations to disengage. The problem was that FF-2 didn't have the power to disengage by acceleration. We played out the turn, but neither of us really engaged and ended up paralleling each other in direction F at several hexes distance, with the DD slowly losing ground.
Meanwhile, Patch's FF-2 headed off to disengage, and my FF-2 headed away to gain distance. At the end of the turn, Patch's ship made the jump to high warp, and my FF-2 was at range 20 to Patch's nearest ship. Boarding party combat went well with my last BP killing his, while he did nothing. FF-2 also finished repairs on an APR that turn, so would be able to go 15 on Turn 8 (using the APR for shields, and putting all 5 warp into movement). I discussed with Patch that my goal was to keep him from going after FF-2 until it could get to 50 hex range and disengage by separation, and then disengage by acceleration, and we called the game there with me disengaging.
The victory points surprised me:
CL Disengaged 22.5
FF-1 Disengaged 15.5
FF-2 Crippled 31
DD Damaged 17
FF-2 Crippled 35
Total 56 69
Marginal Kzinti Victory
All the Type-II drones Patch had bought gave me 2 Victory Points per drone rack, and with eight racks, 16 VP was a noticeable amount of our totals. If I'd bought four transporter bombs, it would have equaled that out (and pushed Patch to a Tactical Victory), and I could have used some more drone defense. (I probably would have just bought two, if I'd done more than vaguely think about it.)
I did well in the early part of the game, but things started going wrong on turn 5. I didn't think about tractor beams, and paid for it. The plan with the CL was to overrun the DD, with the second ESG coming up at range-1, and probably hitting the DD as I moved out of its hex. As it was, I figured I'd still come out slightly ahead until the CL's second disruptor missed. With it, the two big ships would have taken nearly equal internals, and the since the CL is a slightly bigger ship, should absorb it better. Without it, I just didn't do much to the DD.
With my FF-2 still technically combat capable, I figured I still had a good shot at things, but my turn into him on 6 was a major mistake that cost me most of my anti-drone capabilities. Losing the final ESG in my squadron was what decided me to disengage. Of course, I was trying to solve two problems there; I needed to deal with more drones, and my FF-2 was lagging behind, and it looked like Patch was going to go finish it off. I saved FF-2, but at the cost of continuing the battle. The big mistake of course was assuming the battle would move away and stay away from the ship, and going speed 4 to power the disruptor. I should have maneuvered FF-2 until I knew it was safer, and then tried to get a couple shield boxes up and return to battle. Of course, that would have taken quite a while...
- [+] Dice rolls
Just as Patch and I were gearing up for an SFB battle in Y159, I got Captain's Log #42, which featured a scenario set in Y158. Mark and I found time to give it a try this last Monday, since we were both still off work for New Year's. We had a lot of catching up and chatting to do, which was great, but did hold us to only getting four turns in.
One particular action early in the operation involved two Hydran frigates: the Brazen and the newly commissioned Catkiller. The Catkiller was one of the first of the new hellbore-equipped ships. The two frigates were returning after not having found anything worth attacking when they picked up a small Lyran convoy nearing a base station. The frigate commanders diverted to attempt to destroy the convoy before it could reach the station. The convoy’s escort, a Leopard destroyer, had been called away to another location during the earlier stages of the Hydran raids. Those Hydrans had been driven off before it arrived. It returned to its original mission just in time to attempt to protect the freighters from the Brazen and Catkiller long enough for the convoy to get under the umbrella of the base station’s weapons.
It's yet another battle that features early use of the new hellbore torpedo, though it doesn't headline the scenario the way it does for "Where Wisdom Fails" or "Catching Hell". We had to review the hellbore/ESG interaction rules, since they just haven't come up for our group before. The setup is on two maps, with the freighters about 50 hexes from the base station, and the DD actually a few hexes in front of them, while the Hydrans come on the board 26 hexes away from the freighters and slightly in advance of them. While the BS's ph-4s can reach that far, they don't do much (or possibly any) damage at that range, and lending EW only works out to 15 hexes, so it's mostly an appropriate 'end goal' for much of the game. Victory is with a unique schedule of points that mostly revolve around destroying cargo boxes on the freighters.
Mark had the Hydrans went fast the first turn, 21, while the DD went 15 with one overloaded disruptor, and the freighters kept together at speed 10 (which is the best the F-S can do without turning off fire control completely). The initial pass weakened shields, and I did a few internals to the CU, knocking out a phaser and a little power, but no more than that.The main action after Turn 1.
The second turn featured some slowing down to charge everything up. I interposed the DD between the Hydrans and freighters, and was about to announce the ESG to force him to turn off (since the hellbore had fired last turn) when Mark did so anyway. In the maneuvering that followed, he got a few internals on the DD and took out a disruptor and the ESG, which gave him greater freedom to maneuver.End of Turn 2.
Mark pounded the small freighter during turn 3, and completely depowered it. The main action over the next turn was grabbing the large freighter in a tractor and trying to haul it back away from the BS, since it was nearly to range 15, where it could loan ECM, and the ph-4s on the base would get even more dangerous. However, this was a slow process, as the F-L was larger, and still going at a good speed. Given a little time, he could depower it some more to help, but the DD would eventually come back to help. Meanwhile, the DD had tractored the F-S, and was hauling it closer to the base.
It's hard to say just where the scenario was going at the point where we had to leave it. Certainly, if Mark managed to completely destroy the F-L, he'd have 93 points (including destroyed cargo on the F-S), but both of his ships had been damaged, for a final total of 83, and a Tactical Victory. However, since the DD was in generally good shape (though with two down shields), it would not be that easy. Quite likely, at least one of the frigates would be crippled, which would drop him down to 68 points and a Marginal Victory. If I drove him off with the F-L, say, half-destroyed, that'd be... (call it 28 cargo vs. two crippled frigates) -8 for a Tactical Defeat. I'd say we were headed for a draw or Marginal Victory for him.
It's hard to properly protect the freighters, but Mark was rightly worried about the fact that they were getting closer to the BS (which is why he tractored the F-L). Sacrificing the DD will actually work if it can buy enough time to save the freighters. Mark got lucky that the ESG was hit early, before I had a chance to use it, but the HN had taken 14 internals, and the CU had taken 21, including the hellbore, and the Scanner was down to '5'. The DD had taken 11, but its shields were in better shape, and it was about to repair the second disruptor as a range-10 version. It's easy to ignore the BS in the early game, but it should be taking some potshots with the ph-4s and the disruptor, while keeping self-generated ECCM up.
- [+] Dice rolls
After way too many delays, version 2.0 of the Vassal module for Federation & Empire is officially out, and available for download from ADB. There have been some small fixes over the last few months, but mostly I've been trying to get the gumption to get extra scenario setups done. It's past the point of delay for no gain, so the module has been released without all of them done.
New features of 2.0:
* Both regular and large-scale maps.
* New counter art, which is easier for me to work with than the old set.
* The ISC, LDR, Vudar, and Seltorians are in the main module.
* The stack viewer counts ships and SEs. This isn't nearly as good as it sounds because I can't do the 0.5 for cripples, but it will be easy to update if/when Vassal becomes able to do it.
* Crippled ships can be flagged to their new owner, and show up in the tracking under the owning empire.
* The regular map features sector and cordon borders as layers that can be turned on and off as needed. (This ate the memory of most testers on the large map, sadly.)
* All bases, and ships with multiple EW settings, can be set to their current usage, which will adjust the AF in reports.
* Combined MON+pallet and TUG+pod counters are in the module.
* New markers added, such as 'Free Strat' to note just built/repaired ships.
You can see the look of the new module, and the large-scale map in my reporting on Bel and I's game of the Four Powers War.
Scenario setups are included for the first few scenarios of the General War in both sizes. The small map also has setups for the Maelstrom and Winds of Fire. Future releases will include setups for 4PW, ISC conquest, and Minor Empires (note that the initial Seltorian force is already present in these setups, allowing you to use them when your game gets that far) for both size maps.
The zip file also contains a PDF explaining some of the fine points of the module.
Before I go, I'd like to mention that it's a little annoying that even at 50 pixels, the counters are so small. Just about every base hull is a different graphic, but many of the differences just aren't visible at that size. So, here's a few counters closer to the size I see them at in CorelDraw:
Please, feel free to make comments and ask questions!
- [+] Dice rolls
Last year, after running through the first SFB monster scenario, I figured I'd try to run through one of those each 'game calendar' year. Recently, Patch and I started up the 'main' fight for Y159 for us, so while I was down visiting my dad, I started up this scenario, which is loosely based on the original series episode "The Immunity Syndrome".
It's mostly an exercise in the lab and research rules. The ship needs to generate research points, and when it has enough, it rolls for a random method to win the scenario. Shuttles, probes, and special sensors can also aid in this (scouts and survey vessels have a fairly easy time with this scenario), and range to the monster matters for how much information is collected. In the meantime, the monster does damage to the ship by rolling on the same information table, but scores damage from it. It only does one point of damage to shuttles each turn, but it also has MCIDS, so they are unlikely to live at range 3 or closer.
This leads to some timing issues: You base information (/damage) off of your 'closest pass' during the turn, but don't resolve it until after the impulse sequence is over (which is natural, under the circumstances), meaning you have to record that info, and update it as the turn progresses. In this case, you also have to keep track of what shield the monster was on when you first hit that range, as that's where damage will be scored. The major question is at what point in the turn sequence is the damage done? If it's step 8C, Final Records Stage (when information from the labs is rolled, using the same table), then it happens after shield repairs are done (8A).
The minor (nitpicky and technical) question deals with what part of the impulse is range for information gathering determined in? A ship could tow a shuttle into range three, and then use the Special Landing Procedure to get it back out again (or just get it into the ship, which is also at range 3). Since MCIDS is in the Direct Fire Weapons chapter, it should fire at that point, and would get the shuttle out of harm's way before MCIDS fires (though it does specifically fire at anything about to hit it during the Movement step, so maybe MCIDS doesn't ever fire in 6D?). The only lab function that takes place during an impulse, identifying seeking weapons, happens in 6B4, which implies to me that range for information purposes might be best resolved then, which is before the shuttle shuts down as part of the landing procedure in Step 6B8.
A year ago, I was thinking of just going with Kzinti cruisers each year, and watching them upgrade. But currently I've been playing as Lyrans (I've got a Lyran squadron in the current fight, and should be playing as them against Mark soon), so I thought I'd get some time in on their CA. That may have been a mistake. It's a good combat cruiser, with a higher-than-normal BPV of 131 (reduced for being before ESG capacitors), but it only has two shuttles and four lab boxes, meaning it doesn't gain information particularly fast, but at least it has good shields. This meant that I needed 419 points from the labs instead of the normal 400.
Another wrinkle is that shield reinforcement doesn't work on damage from the amoeba, so the only way to resist shield damage is by using damage control to repair damage done. Finally, the entire scenario is on a timer, after 20 turns the amoeba splits, and information gathering has to start over on both of them. So retreating out of range for a while to repair shields isn't really an option either.
I initially approached at speed 18 to get close to the monster on the first turn, and then went speed 12 for the rest of the scenario, as that is a handy speed for managing shuttles (going faster than 12 makes it possible to kill your own shuttle once tractored, though good timing can still avoid that). The monster only goes speed 4, but moves completely randomly, meaning that it can be hard to get exactly the pass you want. With only two shuttles, and one of the possible solutions being a suicide shuttle, I flew them very conservatively to keep out of MCIDS range, and then played lots deck crew games to repair the shuttles in rotation.
By the end of turn 7, every shield had taken significant damage. #3 and #5 were nearly down, and were out of action for the rest of the scenario. A range 0 pass on the amoeba caused a 20-point hit on shield #1 while generating 40 points of information, and then I took the damage on #4 the next turn, which took out about half the shield, but only generated 4 points of information. In fact, the monster tended to roll slightly better on the table than I did for much of the scenario.
After that, I tried keeping to further passes, accepting slower information gathering (and trying to rely on the two poor shuttles more) while working the #2 and #6 shields, and concentrating repairs on them (and eventually all on #2 after a bad turn put it most of the way down, but #6 held out for a while). Turn 8 saw the use of the last probe (the fifth one being kept in reserve, as it is needed for one of the possible solutions), and I was getting worried about the time limit.
Eventually, another close pass (range 2, closer than intended) got a good roll, while doing minimal damage to shield #1 (8 out of the remaining 13), followed by two more good rolls got me to exactly the 419 points needed at the end of turn 16.
The roll for the solution... 3! Do 200 points of damage to the monster to destroy it! ...I was really glad to not get the 'try again after another 100 points of information'. Between the damage and timing, that probably would have been a loss. I had already done 34 points early in the game (up to 50 points are allowed without voiding one of the other results), and now I overloaded the disruptors, released the ESGs, and did a range 1 pass that did 154 points of damage and knocked my #6 shield down to two boxes. The next turn, I went back and at range 1 finished it off with a second volley. That also collapsed the #2 shield, and if the damage should happen before the repairs, took two internals (F Hull and an ESG).
I spent quite a while on this scenario, playing one or two turns at a time. Once through the initial setup, and done getting into the groove, it was fairly tedious, and too much of an accounting exercise to really enjoy. I should also note that the random movement of the monster also tended to be biased in direction '1'. Over the course of 18 turns, it moved from 2115 to 2001. There was a fair amount of wandering back and forth (it went 14 hexes in 18 turns at speed 4), but it did keep drifting to the top of the board, and it was happenstance that I didn't need to adjust things at the end. I don't even recommend this as a good way to get used to operating a ship, as there's too few demands on power. On the other hand, it is very good for getting used to maneuvering a ship, and possibly using shuttles more.
- [+] Dice rolls
Sorry for the delay here, but Bel got a new job that promptly ate a few months of his life. He seems to be back, and hopefully we'll have semi-regular reporting again.
The Alliance economy continues to do well, with income up 3.4 EP from the previous turn (this is mostly from the Kzintis, though the Hydrans had a couple of disrupted provinces to offset a small loss in the Federation economy).
The Kzintis finished setting up a new PDU on 1504 and built their full schedule, including their third CVA, and converted their Z-D5 to a D5S. The Federation canceled all but five FFs in an effort to start catching up on cripples, while building a CVA and CVS. Y175 sees the introduction of the NAC, the best escort the Federation gets (still not as good as the D5A or MEC), and I produced four while converting two others to start getting heavier Federation carrier groups.
The Kzinti concentrated on reclaiming their last planet in 1105, and sweeping the Lyrans out of their territory. This also involved strikes at 0404 and 0707 to pin reserves, hitting border BATS 0504 on the way.
Meanwhile, the Federation did not do much of anything near Kzinti space, preferring to strike at southern Klingon space, and cut off the Tholian Border Squadron SB from the main grid. Operations against the Romulans were confined to the eastern end of the border, where the Romulans were upgrading a new mobile base to a BATS.
2015: Klingon: crip F5S
2214: Klingon: dest F5E, crip D5, D5V, AD5; Federation: dest CC, DE, crip CL, capture planet
2216: SSC: Klingon: dest D7; Federation: crip FF, capture planet
1918: Klingon: dest BATS
2518: Klingon: dest F5, planet captured
2318: Klingon: 4xSIDS, crip D6M, 2xD5; Federation: dest DN+, FF
0519: Lyran: dest cripFF, planet captured
0702: SSC: Lyran: retreat
0404: Lyran: dest DW, FRD, crip 2xCW; Kzinti: dest BC
0504: Lyran: dest BATS
1106: SSC: Lyran retreat after no damage
1105: Lyran: dest 2xDW, FF crip CL, 2xFF; Kzinti: crip CM, MEC, capture planet
1004: Lyran: crip CWE
0904: Lyran: dest 2xCL, FF, cripFF; Kzinti: crip CM
2716: Klingon: crip D6, 2xD5, F5L; Federation: crip NCL, 2xFF
2815: Cloaked evasion
2914: SSC: Romulan: dest K5
3113: SSC: Romulan: dest SN
3812: Romulan: crip SN; Federation: dest CA, FF, crip FF
3912: Romulan: dest SP, WE, SK, crip 3SK, K5L, 2xK5; Federation: dest CL, 2xFF
4010: Romulan: dest BATS; Federation: dest FF, crip FF
1808: SSC: Klingon: dest cripD5
1609: Klingon: crip D6, D5; Kzinti: dest FF, crip FF
0707: Retreat after refused approach
NZ planet 2214 changed hands again as USS Napoleon showed up with a slightly larger fleet than was with C8V Vindicator. While I won, and did more damage, Bel is getting aggressive with mauling valuable ships.
I was a little surprised that Bel took 4 SIDS on the SB in 2318 in one round, but it is probably the best choice. Most of his available fleet was cruisers, and if I can keep interrupting the supply grid in the region, the SB will fall given some effort anyway. I had two DN+s, so he mauled the one on the line.
Bel has had a crippled Lyran SC garrisoning the edge of Kzinti space (after it got away from a BC last turn), and a poor roll (2) allowed it to get away from the DD I sent to kill it.
The Lyrans had to suffer another 6/1 split in die rolls at 0404, allowing the Kzinti to do more damage while fighting at a defended SB. The Kzinti fleet retreated on top of neighboring BATS 0504 and blew it up, leaving only one Kzinti border BATS left.
There were three small combats near the 7th Fleet SB, and the Romulans blew their cloaked evasion rolls on two of them, and then had poor SSC rolls to lose two out of five ships without even forcing a retreat from the Federation ships.
The MB upgrade in 3912 was a primary target, but after passing approach on the first try, minimal rolls left me unable to direct on the MB. I pulled out after three rounds before I dug too deep into the ships that are needed to defend my SB and planet 3711.
Turn 14 scoring:
Coalition: 369.8 EP (x2) + 555 (bases) + 569 ships (/5) + 100 (Hydran Capital = 1508.4
Alliance: 336.8 EP (x2) + 475 (bases) + 550 ships (/5) = 1258.6
Difference = 249.8 Major Coalition Victory
Regaining the Hydran capital puts the score back to being comfortably in the major victory category. However, the situation isn't as good as it was even a year ago when the Romulans joined (291).
Amazingly, the Federation overall lost seven ships this turn, though the Kzintis made up for that with an eight-ship increase. Meanwhile, all three Coalition empires lost shipcount. The loss of three Coalition bases also did much to erode the score.
Much more importantly, a decent chunk of Klingon space is cut off from the main grid. He should be able to restore it, but since the best base-to-base distance in the area is now 5 hexes, it should be easy to keep cutting it off each turn.
- [+] Dice rolls
The Alliance gained 0.8 VP for holding four Lyran provinces at the beginning of the turn. Three were held by the Hydrans who had been left alone by the Lyrans, while the fourth was held by the Kzinti, thanks to a poor SSC roll last time. That had also stranded an important part of the Lyran fleet out of position, which was to have grave effects.
Construction was fairly normal, though both the Kzintis and Hydrans showed defensive concerns upgrading planet defenses, and the Hydrans built a new Monitor (for 0519), and provided all their monitors with carrier pallets.
Kzintis: BC, 2xCL, DD, 3xFF, 3xPDU upgrades
Hydrans: DG, 2xKN, CR, 2xCU, MON, 3xMPV, RN->LM, 2xPDU upgrades
Both raids hit the Lyrans again. The Hydran raid continued to pick on province 0107, but the called up POL forced a retreat. Meanwhile, the Kzintis tried to raid a hex that already had a POL, but I was still able to call up a POL and the pair of them crippled the Kzinti CL.
Movement was brutally direct: Bel moved just about everything available onto the two main Lyran SBs, while avoiding contact elsewhere. On the Hydran border, this was simple, and expected, as major portions of the Hydran fleet were still adjacent to the SB. In Kzinti space, Bel first first pinned my main fleet in front of the SB before moving everything else in. I had managed to pin a couple of his larger scouts out before that, but it was to be of little real use.
This left me with one active reserve (one being pinned in 0404, and all the Klingon reserves were well out of range), which I sent to 0404 in the hopes of saving the Kzinti-border SB.
0705: SSC: Lyran: POL destroyed
0604: Lyran: Crip CA; Kzinti: crip CLD
0404: Lyran: dest SB, 2xCL, 5xDD, 8xFF, (stored) MB, crip BCE, 2xCA, 4xCL, 4xDD; Kzinti: dest CC, 5xCS, 3xCD, CL, CLG, 2xFF, SF, crip DNE, 2xTTB, FF, SF, DF
0504: Lyran: crip 3xDD; Kzinti: crip BC, CL
0411: Lyran: dest SB, DD, DDG, FF, POL, SAS, FTS, (stored) MB, crip CC, CA, 2xCL, CLG, DD, capture LN; Hydran: dest TGB, TGT, DG, PT
0404 went seven messy rounds before I retreated behind the barely surviving SB, with both sides at max BIR, and generally getting high rolls. The Kzinti generally had 9-11 EW available, and I had to boost the SB's EW just to keep the die shift to -1. I contemplated directing on the CDs to lower the EW deficit, but dropped damage to try and force the Kzinti fleet off. He did self-kill a couple at the beginning, and I should have followed up by killing another after that. Bel should have killed the CLS I put on the line to force the -2 shift, or forcing my SB to minimal ComPot. He did a troop assault every round, and managed to kill the inherent G. As I didn't have any troop ships in the hex, I bought a G for the SB a couple rounds before letting it go (they both did their job of absorbing a loss/SIDS).
0411 didn't have sufficient forces on it after last turn's assault; I had planned for the reserve to go there, but saving 0404 seemed the safer bet. However, the Lyran 2-EW SCs and poor Hydran EW allowed me to generate a -2 shift on the Hydrans. This time I concentrated on killing key units (mostly tugs) for four rounds before retreating behind the SB.
The Lyran fleet is is really bad shape (there are four uncrippled DDs left), but Alliance losses have generally been bigger, and it's possible for them to get going again. But the Klingons are going to be carrying the war for the Coalition in the meantime. Last turn, I was expecting to see not a lot of major moves; I'm going to have to figure out how to get out of this hole.
Destroying a SB is 8 VPs, and incurs another 8VP penalty in bases that need replacing. Both our totals for enemy ships destroyed have shot up, though I retain a healthy lead there. Technically, my repair needs are down, and the Klingons are about to get to cycle through a number of them, but the Lyrans won't have much to do.
In all, the Alliance is up to 142.4 VPs, and most of it isn't going away. With all the ship kills, the Coalition is up to 113.85 VPs. This is near the top end for a Minor Victory for the Alliance, and if they can keep up this kind of momentum, might have a chance at a Major victory.
- [+] Dice rolls
As the war drags into its third year, Klingon occupation of Kzinti space earns a VP (actually, 0.1 comes from a province disrupted by the Lyrans). The grand total of 5.6 VP earned for taking enemy territory (including one-time bonuses for capturing a planet at all) is still the smallest component of of the VP totals, showing that this isn't really a war of conquest.
The Lyrans left a lot of repairs undone, but that was purely because of a lack of facilities. The Klingons had a fairly hefty bill, but managed to get almost everything repaired, and still had money to overbuild a D7 and F5.
Klingons: 2xD7, TGB, F5L, F5, F5S, 3xE4, E3, PGB, BS->BATS, D6->D6S, D7->D7C
Lyrans: BCE, CA, CL, CLS, 2xDD, 2xFF
The first truly heavy scouts are introduced with the Klingon D6S and Lyran CLS at this point, which are going to be needed to counter the effect of all the Kzinti drone bombardment platforms.
The Lyrans raided the Hydrans with a new CA and destroyed a called up POL to disrupt the province, while the Klingons went deep into Kzinti space, hoping to pull a ship out of a Reserve. However, they pulled a BC out of a different nearby fleet, and destroyed the raiding D6, retreating back to the capital in process.
The Lyrans drove back across the Kzinti border, and Kzinti forces reacted into them generating a large fight in the neutral zone, and further forces pressed on to BS 0701. Meanwhile, Klingon forces probed into the same area, and after some initial indecision, I made a stab at the planet in 1001 instead of the SB next door.
The Lyrans didn't do anything on the Hydran border. With both borders in bad shape, they wanted as little overall activity as possible. The Klingons raided the border, going after individual ships, and generated a few small fights.
0502: SSC: Lyran retreat
0701: Kzinti: dest BS, CC, BC; Lyran: dest CL, crip CA, 2xDD
0703: SSC: both sides retreat
0603: Kzinti: crip CC, CL; Lyran: dest 2xCL, crip DD
1001: Kzinti: crip CL, FF; Klingon: crip D6, F5, F5G
1002: Kzinti: dest CC; Klingon: crip E4
1004: Kzinti: dest FF, SF; Klingon: crip E3
1605: Kzinti: dest BS, FF; Klingon: crip D5, F5
0915: SSC: Hydran: crip CR, 2xCU, retreat
1216: SSC: Hydran: retreat
1217: SSC: Hydran: dest LN, HN
1317: SSC: Hydran: retreat
1217: SSC: Hydran: retreat
0502 was another annoyingly bad roll in SSC (2), which saw a CL retreat from a FF (which is a +2/-3 combat).
The BS at 0701 took three rounds, with the remaining Kzinti forces retreating out on round two after my DDG successfully scored a SIDS to cripple the base. I stayed in the hex, which has turned into a problem as the later retreat out of 0603 closed their retrograde path, and the hex is also out of supply range.
Even with the maneuvering I did, I didn't have nearly enough to take out planet 1001. My ComPot was slightly lower, and I couldn't keep up with Kzinti EW (boosted by the defenses) and then I rolled 3 under the Kzinti to take nearly twice as much damage. With good rolls, I was prepared to try and force the issue, but not the other way around.
0915 had a full hellbore-armed squadron against an F5 squadron, but this time the rolls were 10 vs 2 in my favor.
1217 continued good SSC rolls with a '12' to wipe out both Hydran ships. Later, the squadron from 1317 retreated into the hex, and both sides rolled average to merely force another retreat.
Despite problems, I still destroyed another two BS this turn. Combined with another eight ship kills and a slowly growing repair bill, my VPs are up to 104.4. Meanwhile, the my repairs have overcome last turn's cripples to Alliance VPs to 94.6 (and another BS->BATS conversion is underway to reduce that total further). This is a Marginal Victory, down from a Minor Victory as of my previous turn, thanks to how bad Alliance Turn 4 was.
We seem to be solidly in the middle part of the war, with all the easy targets taken out, except for the Klingon border stations, which I have so far managed to protect, and three Hydran Lyran-border bases, which the Lyrans have been in no shape to get to.
- [+] Dice rolls
The Romulan economy continues to pick up steam with the last bit of on board survey, and some Federation provinces. However, the Klingon economy shrank by ~27 EP, to put the total Coaltion economy down by 21 EP.
The Klingons also canceled the bulk of their schedule in preference to maximizing repairs, and got about a third of the way through the cripple pile sitting on the capital. This technically is a problem for ship count, but many those cripples have been useless for turns now, and it means he returned a lot of heavier ships to active service (capital repairs were 2xD7C, 3xD7, 4xD6, D6M, 4xD5, 2xF5E). In addition, the Lyrans and Romulans had large repair bills, with the total Coalition repair spending hitting 78.5 EP.
Also, B10-1 Invincible rolled a '1' this turn, putting it one point short of completion....
Naturally, the Hydran capital got a lot of attention, with most of the forces in the area going into the hex, and smaller forces into the surrounding space, trying to trap the Hydran fleet.
A substantial Klingon force moved onto the planet in 2715, and I send a couple ships from the 7th Fleet to reinforce the defenses, but then just about Romulan ship in the area piled onto the SB. The 3rd Legion spread a number of small ships from 3415 over the region to interfere with sending reserves before the balance of the fleet joined in.
There was a fair amount of move-and-countermove along the Federation-Klingon border as Bel moved to kick me off various planets in Klingon space. In the north, moves were mostly confined to pulling more forces out from being cut off by Kzinti fleets. However, the Lyrans moved their Kzinti-front forces to re-take 1105.
Two of my reserves went to their obvious posts of reinforcing the Romulan-border SBs, but otherwise I largely avoided the big fights in order to provide a decisive advantage in certain small fights.
0617: Uncontested retreat
0518: Klingon: dest F5, F5S, crip F5; Lyran: dest FF
1105: Kzinti: dest CM; Lyran: dest DWE, capture planet
1003: Lyran: dest CWE, DWE
1007: Lyran: dest DW
1307: Klingon: crip D6V, AD5
1004: Lyran: crip FF
1210: SSC: Kzinti: dest FF; Klingon: capture planet
1209: unopposed withdrawal
2715: Klingon: dest D6M, D5V, AD5, F5E; Federation: dest CL, 2xFF, crip CL, 2xFF
2815: SSC: Federation: dest FF
2915: Federation: dest CL, 4xFF, crip CC, CA, TG, 2xNCL, 2xCL, DE, 6xFF; Romulan: dest KR, 2xSP, SPB, SPF, 3xSKE, 2xSNB, crip 2xFH, 3xSP, WE, BH, 2xWH, 2xBHE
3213: SSC: Romulan: dest SN
3114: SSC: both sides retreat
3014: SSC: Federation retreat; capture SN
3410: SSC: Federation: crip CL, retreat; Romulan: dest WE
3412: Federation: crip NCL
3611: Romulan: dest KRM, 2xKE, FAL, 5xSP, crip FH, FAL, SP; Federation: 3xSIDS, dest NCL, DE, FFE, crip DN+, NCL
3711: Federation: dest CA; Romulan: dest 2xSP, crip KRM, SP
3812: Federation: dest BATS; Romulan: crip SK
2414: Retreat after refused approach
2416: SSC: Federation: dest FF, crip DD, retreat
2216: SSC: Federation: dest FF; Klingon: crip D5, capture planet
1916: Klingon: dest F5
2214: Federation: dest DD, FF, planet captured
1812: SSC: Klingon: crip D5, retreat
2014: SSC: both sides retreat
1913: Federation: crip NCL; Klingon: dest F5E
1911: SSC: Klingon: dest FV
1713: unopposed withdrawal
1611: Federation: dest NCL, planet captured
1712: Federation: crip CC, FF; Klingon: dest D7, F5E, crip FV, F5S
0617 didn't go anything like Bel had planned. To be honest, it didn't work the way I thought it would either. A careful reading of the capital assault rules showed that with zero defenses in place, I could basically retreat out before combat. It seems odd, but it also seems pretty clear. Bel had abandoned the major planet in 0718 to force the Hydrans out of position, but there were two major problems with that idea. One, while it immediately reverts to my control, the planet doesn't become a supply source until the next turn. Two, he only had a single line of pickets between the capital and the Old Colonies, so as soon as I retreated onto it, I was in supply.
Planet 2715 was a fight I was determined to win, but had doubts about. I accepted approach to kill the one mauler present so that Bel would have a hard time just killing the PDUs to make it easier to take next turn. Once over the planet, my ComPot was substantially higher, and Bel retreated out, self-killing ships to avoid pursuit. I don't know why he killed his carrier....
Bel had a nice large fleet at the 7th Fleet SB in 2915, but it was thin on larger ships, meaning I mostly had to outlast the initial heavy line. This was aided by me rolling an average of two over Bel, and he retreated out after I killed a SKE to force the SUB group off the line, and then I got his SPB group in pursuit.
I could easily outlast the Romulans in 3611 against the 6th Fleet SB, except he brought three maulers and started directing SIDS. I killed two and then the third one shocked and he retreated out leaving the SB at 4xSIDS.
The obvious choice for the 2nd Federation Reserve was to send it to the NZ planet in 2214 and make a fight for it. However, I didn't think the odds were good with the reserve, so I sent it into Klingon territory and planet 1916, where a Klingon squadron was picking on the garrison FF, and now I have a battle line central to several points of internal infrastructure.
My CVAs in Klingon space ended up in adjacent battles. Bel let me withdraw out of the first one in 1713 (I was tempted to stay and bleed him, but I want the forward carrier group in good shape for my turn), and probably should have retreated onto the other battle. Instead, I retreated into a position that would get cut off if I didn't hold 1712. I had lots of fighter reserves (18 fighters on carrier tugs), but Bel had full carrier groups to shuffle through, and I retreated on the second round after we exchanged high-low rolls. (Thankfully, his retrogrades opened up supply.)
Overall, I'm happy with the continued chaos inside the Klingon Empire, but while I'm holding off the Romulans (I really did not think I'd manage to hold on to 2715, 2915, 3611 and 3711), they are starting to drive deeper into Federation territory.
- [+] Dice rolls
"Catching Hell" was the only scenario scheduled for Y159, so with that, our SFB group's 'clock' now goes to Y159.
Here's the summary of the year:
The Original Series: The 5-year mission of the original Star Trek series is considered to be Y155-Y160.
The Four Powers War: There's not a lot of detail available at this point, but the 4PW has already taken it's final form, with both alliances fully in the action. The Coalition generally has the advantage, and is pressing offensives forward.
And that's it. There's no scenarios set in this year, and there's no ships with a 159 "Date Available" entry. This is the last time this happens until the end of the timeline.
Now, that's not entirely true. There's a few ships with a Y159 "Year in Service", which is the date given in F&E when they truly first enter service. The SFB date is just when they're in 'squadron service', i.e., easily available. But, since this is an SFB group, I'm sticking with its internal dates for reporting.
With no 'historical' scenarios existing, it's not quite sure what we'll do. Most likely, at some point two of us will get together and do a Lyran vs. Kzinti points battle. We haven't really seen either lately, and the Lyrans have a couple classes (DNE and BCE) that go away after the war, so involving one of them would be nice.
On the other hand, Captain's Log #41 proposes a bunch of variants to T3 "The Lone Grey Wolf" (from Star Fleet Battles: Advanced Missions) one of which happens in Y160. I don't see any reason why it can't be shifted to Y159 instead, but it may be a bigger project than we want to do.
Once one of those has been done (and probably a solo session of SM2), we'll advance the clock to Y160.
In the meantime, if you're playing an SFB scenario that does not require later ships, consider explicitly setting it in Y159, and reporting what happened here!
- [+] Dice rolls