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Captain's Log

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Captain's Log
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Description Edit | History

Captain's Log is a semi-annual magazine published by the Amarillo Design Bureau in support of their Star Fleet Universe games. The first issue was published in 1983. The 50th issue was released in 2015. Beginning in 2012, the magazine adopted a 144-page, perfect-bound format and has no outside advertising.
Each issue includes fiction set in the Star Fleet Universe, new scenarios, ships, rules questions, rules updates, strategic advice, and other expansion material for the Star Fleet Universe games. In addition, there are columns of company news about new and upcoming products, and results and announcements of organized play in tournaments, conventions and online.
Games supported by material in the Captain's Log include Star Fleet Battles, Federation Commander, Federation & Empire, Prime Directive (RPG), Star Fleet Marines, and Star Fleet Battle Force, as well as the Star Fleet adaptations of Starmada and A Call to Arms.
The magazine's covers usually feature artwork drawn from that issue's main fiction story. Interior pages are black-and-white with nominal artwork, and follow the distinctive layout format that is standard across nearly all Amarillo Design Bureau products.
New and recent Captain's Log issues are sold through retailers and direct from the publisher. Older issues are also available in pdf format on a rolling release schedule that averages 10 issues behind the current release. A digitally available Supplement to each issue includes additional material that did not fit the printed publication's fixed page format.

More Information Edit | History

From the publisher:

Captain's Log is the official journal of the Star Fleet Universe. More than a magazine, it is in one way an expansion module for each of our various product lines, and in other ways is the primary means of communication between the company and you, the gamers.
Captain's Log is published twice a year, in May (just in time for convention season) and in November (to wrap up the year's developments and set the tone for the next year). It includes fiction (including historical monographs), news (product schedules, rules updates, convention news), and no end of "play value material" including new ships, rules, and scenarios. Captain's Log has continually expanded, from the 48 pages of issue #1 to the 120 pages of issues #34-44. Starting with issue #45 we expanded to 144 pages. As noted, it covers all of our product lines.

Captain's Log has been referred to as a gigantic "fill in the blank" project, with its highly varied content hiding a fairly standard format. While most of these "blanks" are filled each issue, we usually drop one or two "recurring" items from any given issue.

Captain's Log is divided into sections:

HISTORY: This includes fiction stores, historical monographs, deck plans, starship class histories, and similar background information.

COMMUNICATIONS: This section includes Tournament and Convention reports, Announcements of new products, After-action reports on recent products, Ten questions (just what the questions are about rotates with each issue), Input guide (how to submit materials for publication), Starline 2400 (announcements of new ships and contest winners), Ask Admiral Growler (questions about SFB rules), Why questions about the game background, Filksongs, and Awards to those who have contributed to new products and projects.

FEDERATION COMMANDER, our newest product line, is fully supported with news, tactics, new scenarios and ships, expansion rules, and articles about our on-line and play-by-Email systems.
STAR FLEET BATTLES, our flagship product line, claims most of this space, including four sections:

Tactics: Victory at Origins, term papers, tactical primers, and other tactics articles.

Scenarios: Several new historical battles, covering the General War and (often) the Early Years and Omega Sector.

New ships: a dozen or more each issue.

Database: A collection of articles including Battlegroup (expert players build fleets within defined limits for specific missions), a major new expansion rule, Brothers of the Anarchist (conversions of captured ships), special rules for a monster, and an update of a major SFB rule.

Venues is a collection of articles supporting our other product lines and activities, including computer games, the Star Fleet Warlord campaign system, the Galactic Conquest campaign system, the Star Fleet Battle Force card game, the Prime Directive Roleplaying Universe, Starmada, Star Fleet Marines, A Call to Arms Star Fleet, and our On-Line and Email gaming systems.

FEDERATION & EMPIRE, our strategic game system, is fully supported with rules updates, questions with answers, a new scenario, new ships, Origins mega-event updates, and Tactical Notes.
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Published 1999-10-10
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Published 2000-06-15
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