Had the usual gang (Patch, Mark, and Paul) over for another SFB game yesterday. We did another “let’s see how this class operates” battle, in this case early dreadnoughts. DNs have been part of the game since the beginning, with the Federation cursed with one that was much wimpier than the others.

Well, a few years back ADB fixed that by retconning the Fed-DN to be introduced about a decade earlier than before, and everyone else getting ones contemporary to that new date that were on a par with it. So, in the current version of the history, the Federation was just slower to update theirs when everyone else started building the more powerful versions.

So, the idea was for two teams, one person each side gets a DN, and the other person gets a pair of heavy cruisers. Keeps it small, simple, and should show off the DNs fairly well. Sides were chosen by random draw (other than Paul, who automatically got the Fed DN).


Paul & Mark James & Patch
DN 180 C6 195
CA 125 D6 116
CA 125 D6 116
Total 430 427

The game overall went very smoothly, with turns taking less time than usual for us. Hopefully that means that people are getting more used to the game. Also, there was a good amount of maneuvering throughout. Lately, most games have been one pass with maneuvering, then it turns into Electric Football again, with everyone piling into the middle. (Black holes have been a nice terrain, as they encourage maneuver; but no terrain today.)

I drew the C6, and from the beginning I had a basic plan: Put it out in front to encourage the Feds to shoot at it first. It takes a lot more killing than the D6s, and doesn’t have that much more firepower. (Same number of disruptors, 12 phasers vs. 7 — though it is the only Klingon ship with Ph-1s here.)

That part worked out well. The two CAs volleyed everything at the C6 and took down the #6 and did a number of internals. We volleyed at one of the CAs and did a similar number of internals after crashing it’s #1. The DN had been lagging a couple hexes, so we managed to avoid a pass with it, but that meant the Feds still had photons for Turn 2. Also, the speed the DN had been going meant we really didn’t want to get hit by them.

We had tried for an oblique pass originally, and… didn’t screw it up, but it’s not going in any text books. As everyone got their down shields away from each other, the DN ended up chasing us, and crashing one of the D6’s #5 shields and doing some good damage. However, that left him unsupported by the CAs. We had been trying to get past him, but at that point we turned in and did a number on the DN.

This maneuver… also isn’t going in any textbooks. The pass itself went well, but after that…. The initial pass and second pass were off the left side (I did take more hits through the still down #6), and I did what Patch and I had originally talked about– I looped to the right, and prepared for a pass off that side. However, Patch kept going straight. And was headed for the CAs, who were actually still headed off in the wrong direction themselves.

Now the reason for that was that Patch didn’t want the CAs chasing him, and he planed on turning the opposite way as soon as the CAs turned, and then heading back to me. Mark didn’t want the D6s turning inside him, and so delayed turning to see where the D6s went…. And the DN and C6 were headed for another showdown.

By this point, the DN had taken the worst of it. And with no great options, and another round of drones headed in, Paul experimented. He declared speed 4 and launched a weasel.

…And everyone got a good lesion on why that’s a bad idea if there’s no one right there to cover you. He did live through it. Cleared out the drones, and we all got a good refresher on a portion of the rules that don’t get invoked very often (I’ve weaseled once, ever). But by the end of the turn, the DN was down to 8 power and a couple control spaces (yes, we nearly de-controlled a DN). The CAs were forced to disengage at that point, and were faster than we cared to manage.

So it was fun and educational. Things were definitely in doubt for half the battle. The fact that Patch was going to rejoin me before Mark rejoined Paul was pretty much the final deciding point right there. Patch startled both of them with how fast he got back to me once he did turn. He said he started fiddling with counters on the board after he’d gone, “How’d you get there?!” a couple times against me. ^_^