Recently picked this up on eBay and was amazed what a nice little game this is.
The components although nice and thick have pretty poor images on them and are all printed on navy blue backgrounds with black writing so almost impossible to identify.
I use number markers to keep track.
Maps are standard black hex grid sheets.
The rule book is short and for the most part spot on despite a couple of errata things.
The scenarios are resfreshingly varied and there is even a 1 player learning scenario with an AI OUTPOST.
The game has great scope to create your own ships.
The game is pretty straight forward using a simplified energy allocation system similar to SFB.
Each ship has an energy rating and this must be used to power assorted systems.
Engines,shields,cloaking devices,tracking devices,shields etc.
There are three races.
Two humanoid that move in the standard way.
Then the droves that move slightly differently using a system called a pendulam drive.
They can change direction instantly during a move but at higher speed there ships sometime displace slightly and end up not exactly where you want them too.
There ships tend to compensate for this with slightly better energy levels.
So you do this for all your ships.
You also allocate targets you intend to shoot at and set your orders.
This is a clever little system in which orders are rated from A1 A2 A3 N D1 D2 D3.
In order this means do you want your ship to take a defensive or offensive posture.
A3 is very offensive while D3 is very defensive while N is standard.
The way this works is if you are defensive and take damage you will mitigate some damage while if your offensive you will possibly do more.
Of course if you are in affective mode any damage taken will be worse and if you defensive any damage you dish out will be most likely less.
This for me is a very clever system and easily implemented.
Once all is plotted all ships move at the same time before any firing.
Then any firing takes place at ships you chose to target only so you have to second guess your opponent and where they might move to or fire at.
When firing firstly through the use of simple CRT,S you will calculate if you hit. This will depend on your range and how much energy you put into tracking an enemy ship versus there energy put in cloaking.
If you manage to hit the same age you do if you overcome their shield will depend on the power you put into weapons and you and your opponents combat stance taken.
You will then roll on a chart for damage and apply it to assorted systems on the opponents ship.
Of course as you take damage systems fail,weapons take damage,your shield numbers are limited etc and most important to your energy source takes damage.
If your ships energy takes damage the ship is destroyed at the end of the turn.
There are of course extra rules for hidden movement,fighters,assorted other weapons etc.
But is really is a simple elegant playable game where you can have a 3 to 3 capital ship skirmish in about an hour.
I love this game but wish it was a little prettier.
I’m sure I will be playing this for some time to come and creating my own scenarios.
If you can find this and want something similar to SFB simpler that plays quicker track this down.
Thanks for this. It's great to here about the oldies!
I agree that this is a really nice, easily playable starship combat game.
It depends on plotted orders which has its charm and excitment but isn't everyones cup of tea. However the plot sheets are very helpful and well laid out and plentiful. There are also plenty of scenarios, all part of a story.
Was yours the Battleline or Avalon Hill version? Mine has really satisfyingly chunky counters all shaped to the starship outlines, ie. no squares here. And the graphics are fine and clear. This is I think the Battleline version.
The only problem I have with it is also one of the things I really like about it - the plotted movement becomes a chore when solo playing two sides and I don't game frequently enough with others to give this a good chance of getting to the table.
- Last edited Tue Feb 20, 2018 8:24 pm (Total Number of Edits: 2)
- Posted Tue Feb 20, 2018 8:18 pm
Glad you like....😊
Mine is battle line but was pre owned
Don’t know if it’s wear or just my eyes but although nice and chunky I find it hard to read the text in black on the dark blue counters.
I love SFB but it is quite an undertaking to have a battle involving more than two ships an it is a half day thing.
This scratches an itch I have for something not table top (ie measuring and tabletop scenery)
But which allow me to play out in a couple of hours.
Yes you quite right about the plotting two sides in a solo game it is a chore.
I have tried an alternating turn by turn system for playing solo and my main concern was not the movement rather the impartial allocating of power.
I’m working on a combat table similar to that featured in mission one used for the outpost AI
I’m intending on using it for the AI ships
Yes with regards to your last comment a lot of my friends judge a game on its first appearance so this looks pretty plain on the table.
Where as battlefleet gothic scenery and all looks amazing.
I am glad I picked this up and I think it’s a very clever design for its age.
- Last edited Tue Feb 20, 2018 9:34 pm (Total Number of Edits: 1)
- Posted Tue Feb 20, 2018 9:27 pm
Thanks for the review, I haven't played tjay game sonce the 80s!