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Subject: Klingon Attack - Review rss

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Terry OCarroll
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Klingon Attack is the first of the expansions for ADB's Federation Commander game. It contains more ship cards, more scenarios and more map panels.

Klingon Attack adds a lot of play value to the original game. The new ship cards expand and fill out the existing fleets from Klingon Border. Just using these new ships in fleet games and duels adds more play value, because they fly differently to the existing ships.

There are a lot more Kzinti ships than any other in the expansion, which is kind of strange given that it's called "Klingon" Attack. Still, the Kzintis needed the new ship classes presented. The Klingons do get the excellent D5 and D5W 'war' cruisers, and the E4 frigate, so they now have a complete fleet to choose from.

The expansion features a lot of new scenarios. These are very welcome, given that the basic set had only about four scenarios in the basic game. The new scenarios focus mainly on the Klingon invasion of the Federation during the "General War" in the Star Fleet Universe timeline. The scenarios are written mainly for Federation vs Klingon forces, but alternative forces are presented. (In SFU "history", Federation forces operated in Kzinti space at this time so you could play Federation-Kzinti mixed forces vs Klingons using the new Kzinti ships in the expansion.)

I have a few gripes about the scenarios - one of the scenarios is exactly the same as another, but with different forces. Some players also report that the Showdown At Grimrock scenario is not balanced. Still, lots of good playing time in each of the scenarios presented, and players can easily play each scenario several times by switching sides and changing the antagonists.

The map panels feature two planets. One 'large' but Earth-like planet, and one gas giant. Many of the scenarios use these map panels, and having a planet to maneuver around can make duels more interesting. The existing small planet and moon counters from Klingon Border could be used to create smaller moons for these larger planets if you wanted.

The map panels have the same problem as the panels in Klingon Attack - grey lines along the edges, and slight warping. I'm told that these will be replaced by new panels without these problems when the old panels run out of stock. Other than that, the new panels are great, with full-colour painted illustrations of the planets.

What Klingon Attack DOESN'T add is new rules. That's a good thing, especially when you see how huge its sister game, Star Fleet Battles, has grown over the 25+ years of its life. The designer is determined that FC will not bloat into another SFB.

A question people often ask is, "is KA compatible with Romulan Border"? Yes, it is. Romulan Border's rulebook has all the necessary rules for the weapons on the ships in KA. KA is probably more compatible with Klingon Border than with Romulan border, because of the ships included and the forces specified for the scenarios, but you can use it with RB if you want to.

Overall, I liked Klingon Attack a lot. Expansion sets should add play value to the base game, and KA certainly delivers plenty. Good value for money IMO.
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