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Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Battle Group Articles Need Help

This is Steven Petrick posting.

As has been noted on the board, I am trying (and doubtless to some being very trying . . . sorry) to get things started for Captain's Log #52. Part of that means getting the "Battle Groups" topics going. The problem, as has been noted on the board, is coming up with something that will be new, interesting, and a challenge.

So far, the only ideas I have had have not passed muster with SVC (I try to make sure someone besides just me is involved in this because even I have my blind sides, and while I considered some of the ideas I had worth pursuing, SVC shot some holes in them).

I do not like using battle groups to push people to buy products. Thus a proposal to have the players submit battle groups and then surprise them by having their opponent be the Borak (Module E3), and everyone has to come up with how they will fight their Mega-phasers and hunter-killer fighters is a non-starter. I have no problem with a player proposing a Borak force as one of the battle groups, but I am not going to try to force every player who submits a battle force to purchase Module E3 so that they can figure out their tactics against the Borak. They are in playtest, and not everyone normally buys a playtest module of a new "empire."

I am leery about using the Omega Octant or the Magellanic Cloud (or even the simulator empires) as a "general opponent" for similar reasons. Some players do like to delve all across the Star Fleet Universe, but a goodly number are (not in any way meant to be disparaging) "Alpha Octant Homebodies." They are comfortable with the existing technology in the Alpha Octant and do not really want to expand into the larger Star Fleet Universe. Trying to force them to do so is not what the Battle Groups are about. They are about giving players the opportunity to show their own tactical skill and knowledge, not about forcing them to buy other products. Even in the Alpha Octant not all players like carriers and fighters, but they usually know enough about them to be able to deal with them tactically.

So battle force articles are generally designed to cast the proverbial "big net." To allow as many players as possible to have their moment to shine and be published, and not to exclude them because they do not play in the Magellanic Cloud.

So if you have an idea for a Battle Group scenario, drop me an E-mail and make the suggestion. Keep in mind that we have settled on 550 BPV as allowing the maximum number of players to be published, and have enough BPV to allow as much flexibility as possible without the complexity of larger battle forces that require so much exposition that only a few can be published.