Wednesday, December 23, 2009


I've been having quite a bit of fun with drow's random generators on the donjon site. I discovered that tucked away inside the SciFi Name Generators is a great Star Trek Technobabble generator. Just select "Star Trek" for Type, and on the second drop-down menu select "Technobabble" and you get a randomly generated list like this.

Gravitronic Interference Module
Central Electro-magnetic Variance Multiplexer
Antimatter Phase Multiplexer
Particle Phase Circuit
Central Phase Drive
Auxiliary Antimatter Frequency Node
Primary Degeneration Buffer
Multiphasic Phase Node
Gravimetric Variance Multiplexer
Holographic Degeneration Capacitor

These are great names for starship components. ST is often criticized for relying on technobabble to advance the plot, but I think it's perfectly legitimate to have groovy technobbable names for all those complicated spaceship parts. So instead the GM saying, "You have to roll 15+ to fix the hyperdrive." he or she can now say, "You're there in the Jefferies tube and the diagnostic you've just run indicates that the Particle Phase Circuit is burnt out. You have to roll 15+ to repair it and get the Warp Drive back online."

Friday, December 18, 2009

9390 Leporis

Randomly generated over at donjon.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Star Wars SSDs

Donald "Smiley Lich" Miller has just about every imaginable kind of SFB SSD on his site, including these for Star Wars fighters. "Stay on target!"

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

USS Enterprise-A

Here's a SSD for the SFB Cadet rules that includes the USS Enterprise-A. It's from Jonathan "Caraig" McDermott's old site which had a good section devoted to Cadet Ships.

"A few more oddballs. We have a cadet-scale battlepig, a WYN auxilliary battlecruiser. (Please note that all phasers are 360-degree.) There is also what is probably the first cadet X-ship. (I know, I know: "Why bother?") The USS Enterpirse, NCC-1701-A (and that's what this game is all about, isn't it?) was meant to introduce newer players to the game with something that might be more familiar to them: the "Big E" from the movies. I was going to do a matching Reliant, for STII cadet scenarios, but it seems the technical folks running the Trek Franchise are saying the Miranda- class light cruiser has pulse phaser cannons. Guess this is their reaction to fans putting axial (mega) phaser cannons on her. Oh, well. (Added 09OCT2001: I may yet do the pulse-phaser-equipped Miranda, after all.) The last one on the oddballs sheet is a WYN fish ship. In particular, please let me know if this ship is overgunned for a cadet game!"

Monday, December 7, 2009

Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock Holmes (50 Character Points)
(First Appearance in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlet, Beeton's Christmas Annual, 1887)

Body: 4  Mind: 6  Soul: 4

Attack Combat Value: 6
Defense Combat Value: 4
Health Points: 45

Attributes: Heightened Awareness 3, Highly Skilled 10, Servant 5 "Dr. Watson"

Defects: Nemesis 2 "Prof. Moriarty",
Physical Impairment 1 "Cocaine Addiction"

Skills: Area Knowledge (Britain, London) 2,
Biological Sciences (Anatomy) 1, Disguise 2,
Etiquette 2, Forgery 1, Interrogation 2,
Languages 4, Law (Criminal) 2,
Performing Arts (Public Speaking, Fast Talking, Violin) 2,
Physical Sciences (Chemistry, Geology, Tobacco) 2,
Poisons 2, Police Sciences (Criminology, Forensics) 3,
Sleight of Hand (Lock Picking, Safecracking) 2,
Stealth (Silent Movement) 2, Urban Tracking 1,
Gun Combat (Pistol) 1, Melee Attack (Cane, Sword) 2,
Melee Defense (Cane, Sword) 2,
Unarmed Attack 2, Unarmed Defense 1

Dr. John Watson (30 Character Points)

Body: 4  Mind: 5  Soul: 5

Attack Combat Value: 5
Defense Combat Value: 3
Health Points: 45

Skills: Area Knowledge (Afghanistan, Britain) 1, Etiquette 2, Languages 3, Medical (Surgery) 3, Writing (Fiction) 2, Gun Combat (Pistol) 1, Unarmed Attack 1, Unarmed Defense 2

Sherlock Holmes is a brilliant London-based "consulting detective." Holmes is famous for his intellectual prowess and is renowned for his skillful use of astute observation, deductive reasoning and forensic skills to solve difficult cases. He is assisted by his friend and biographer, Dr. John Watson.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Triton Witches

The land is threatened by an evil android, Ferrakall, who controls an incredible armory and a legion of criminals, the Lurking Spawn.

Our heroes, Secret Force Morphing Five, are a group of young children, led by a time-travelling military commander, Koshimo Hisu.  Drawing their powers from the universe itself, can they save the day?  Watch for the archnemesis of the heroes to fall in love!

(Randomly generated at Seventh Sanctum and donjon)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Buck Rogers

Anthony "Buck" Rogers (50 Character Points)
(From the 1928 novel Armageddon 2419 A.D. by Philip Francis Nowlan)

Body: 5 Mind: 4 Soul: 6

Attack Combat Value: 7
Defense Combat Value: 7
Health Points: 55

Attributes: Attack Combat Mastery 2,
Defense Combat Mastery 4, Gadgets 2,
Highly Skilled 2, Organizational Ties 2 (Wyoming Gang)

Defects: Conditional Ownership (Gadgets) -1,
Significant Other -1 (Wilma Deering)

Skills: Gun Combat 2, Military Sciences 2,
Piloting (Light Airplane) 3,
Physical Sciences (Geology) 1,
Unarmed Attack 1

Gadgets: Ultraphone, Rocket gun (Special Attack 4:
40 damage, Area Effect, Concealable); Inertron "Jumper"
(Jumping 4 2-400 m, Speed 1 (Restriction: only for jumping)),
green uniform

While surveying an abandoned mine, Anthony Rogers, a former U. S. Army Air Corps officer, falls into a coma after exposure to a leaking gas and awakens in the 25th century. Together with his new comrades, the beautiful Wilma Deering and the intrepid Dr. Huer, he struggles against Mongolian domination and rival gangs.

Friday, December 4, 2009

8-Bit Gundam

[via AltJapan]

Now you can live the experience.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Star Trek Plot Generator

"Whlist investigating a form of energy never previously encountered Bones encounters an apparent duplicate of an old friend which is in fact a shapechanger but their opponent turns out to be just a kid and vulnerable to a cunning bluff and dies, which means everything turns out okay, give or take a few personal tragedies. Then, finally Spock says something snappy and they leave at warp factor seven."

John Sensebe's ST:TOS Plot Generator not only creates random Star Trek plots, it also automatically misspells "whilst."

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Star Fleet Battles Cadet rules

 Star Fleet Battles is one of those games that, like Hero System, has a not undeserved reputation for complexity and crunchiness. Some people love that kind of thing, others are guaranteed to have their eyes glaze over. However, once you get the knack of them neither game is quite as hard as it seems (as long as you steer clear of advanced rules). The Star Fleet Battles Cadet Training Handbook is intended to ease newbies into the complete SFB rules, starting with the bare basics of gameplay and slowly adding more rules in each chapter. However, with its simplified and reasonably fast game play it makes for a good rules-lite Star Trek combat game on its own.

What makes the game play faster is four things. Shorter turns of only 8 impulses. Simplified SSDs that don't have as many components as the Captain's Edition sheets. Simplified damage allocation rolls using only 1d6 per hit instead of 2d6 per hit. (That means you can just chuck as many dice as hits you've taken rather than rolling 2d6 a dozen times or so each turn.) And the option of playing without Energy Allocation. Doing that won't set well with purists, since Energy Allocation is as central to SFB as heat management is to Battletech, but if you get rid of it you'll drastically speed up play even if you'll lose some of the flavor of the game.

You might even want to even modify the game's order of play to make things go faster. For example, taking Donald Miller's house rules as a starting point I've come up with this.
  1. Each player rolls 2d6 for Initiative 
  2. Movement (going from lowest initiative to highest) 
  3. Non-weapon Activity (transporters, tractor beams, shields, etc.) 
  4. Seeking Weapons Launch, those from previous round resolve 
  5. Direct-Fire Weapons Fire (must fire Hell Bore before other weapons) 
  6. Post Combat (Seeking Weapons hit, Explosions resolve, etc.) 
  7. Damage Control
I'm still playtesting it, but I like how it works so far.

And even if you don't want to change the rules as drastically as that the Cadet's Handbook is fun. There's plenty of supporting material out there too. Jeremy Gray has a great page devoted to it as does the BoardGameGeek site. The point is that the Cadet version is a fun little game even if you're not a big fan of SFB's idiosyncratic Star Fleet Universe or of the complex SFB rules. Who knows? Maybe you'll like them so much you'll want to buy the Captain's Edition. In any case you'll probably want to pick up some of ADB's Starline 2400 miniatures to use in your Star Trek games.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Collector Knights

The solar system is threatened by a wealthy demonness, Xaxnu Jadelock, who controls an incredible armory and the Seekers From The Night Dimension, a legion of elementals.

Our heroes, Sonic Angel Upsilon, are a group of scientists, led by a sexy inventor.  Drawing their powers from the high technology Albedo Process, can they save the day?  Enjoy the antics of their funny assistant, Weowe!

(Randomly generated at Seventh Sanctum)