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"Blasters and Bulkheads Show and Tell" Topic

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tberry740314 Nov 2011 11:52 a.m. PST

The following is just a overview of the GoalSystem game system as used in B&B.


"Blasters & Bulkheads" (B&B) is a GoalSystem game. For those of you
unfamiliar with these games here is a brief rundown of the system.

NOTE: B&B has a definite Star Wars flavor to it. Some characters are able
to use "The Essence" (the Force). You don't need to use this but the option
is there.

Turn Sequence:
Each side rolls dice equal to their leader's MIND + 2D6. Highest number
of Goals wins. If tied total the dice rolled. If still tied Initiative goes to the
player who DID NOT have it last turn.

Winner decides if he wants to move first. Moves then alternates between
players until all figures have had a chance to move.

Your force consists of a band of 4-5 heros and maybe 15-20 henchmen.
The henchmen are grouped into 5-10 figures each that act as one figure
(for instance if they take 4 killing hits then 4 figures are lost).

Table Size:
B&B is designed for 15mm and 25mm figures. They recommend using a
2'x2' table for 15mm and a 4'x'4 or 4'x6' table for 25mm figures.

15mm figures use cms, 25mm use the same stat on using inches.

The Goal Roll:
The basic die rolling mechanic is the use of a pool for dice the player rolls
to either beat a Target Number (TN) or out score an opponent in an
Opposed Goal Roll.

You make your "goal" by rolling a 4, 5 or 6 on a d6. Each 4 or 5 counts as
a goal with a 6 counting as two goals.

Target Numbers are defined by how difficult a task is. A TN of 1 is a routine
task while a TN of 5 is considered "Godlike" (i.e. very difficult).

Character Make-up:
Each character has four primary attributes each of which provide that figure
with a pool of dice to use during the Goal Roll.

STRENGTH: Physical power and damage resistance.

AGILITY: Skill in close combat and accuracy in ranged combat.

MIND: Perception, intelligence and mental acuity.

RESOLVE: Willpower, resistance to pain, connection to the Essence.

Most characters start out with a VITALITY (hit points) of 6. Henchmen groups
have a VITALITY based on the number of models in the group.

Basic MOVE is 6 cm.

Damage Resistance (DR) is 1 + the STRENGTH attribute.

FATE dice: Some characters have access to a pool of dice that can be added to
the Goal Roll. This pool equals its starting RESOLVE attribute and is replenished
at the beginning of each turn. Their use must be declared before any dice are
rolled and once used are gone until the end of that round (turn).

NOTE: Any modifiers during the Attack and Damage phases consists of additions
or subtractions to the number of dice each player uses.

Combat is basically I attack using my AGILITY dice pool rolling against you and
your AGILITY dice pool. If the attacker scores MORE goals than the defender
then a HIT is made.

The defender then rolls its DR verses the Damage Number (DN) of the attacker's
weapon. The defender loses 1 Vitality Point for each goal below the DN.
For example: if the attacker has a DN of 8 and the defender has a DR of 6, but
only rolls 5 goals, the defender loses 3 VITALITY Points.

Character and Force Creation:
There are 8 pre-defined races plus cyborgs and robots. Each race has its own
Special Traits and Cost. Humans, for example, have the Special Trait of Extra
Fate and cost 1 point. Slithar (reptilian humaniods) have the Special Traits of
Tough, Slow (-1cm) and Regeneration and cost 3 points.

You then start with one of five character arrays or 1 or 2 henchmen arrays.
These give you the starting stats for the four Primary Attributes and cost
nothing. Characters (but not henchmen groups) can then pay +2 points to
add +1D to any one of the four attributes.

Henchmen groups start out with 5 figures and can purchase, in 5-figure blocks,
up to an addtional 15 figures at +3pts per 5 figures.

You next purchase a Background for your characters and henchmen groups.
Backgrounds include "Blaster for Hire", "Essence Wielder", "Ship Captain" etc.
and give you additional Special Traits and access to additional abilities.

Next you can spend up to 2 points buying Combat Skills (at 1 point each).

You can then personalize you characters by buying them additional Special
Traits. There are 29 regular Special Traits and 11 Essence Powers that can only
be purchased by characters with the Essence Wielder background.

Some Special Traits are only available to Henchmen Groups. Other Special Traits,
such as Slow (-1cm movement, Cost: -1pt.), have a negative cost.

You then purchase equipment. Mainly weapons, but, you can also buy Body
Armor, Med Kits, Scanners, etc..

You can also build vehicles.

There is a small selection of four one-off scenarios you can play. They also
include the outline of a Campaign system. This includes Post-Battle recovery
tables for Characters and Vehicles.

Characters (not Henchmen Groups) gain experience by surviving the battle
(+1 point) and/or taking out any number of opposing Characters (not Henchmen
Groups) (+1 point). For each 5 experience points a character can buy a "bump"
by rolling against a "bump" table. There are Fighter, Essence and General "bump"
tables. A "bump" generally adds a Die to a specific Goal Roll.

Henchmen Groups that are reduced or wiped out return full strength next game.

ordinarybass14 Nov 2011 2:37 p.m. PST

Thanks for this. An excellent layout of the basic mechanics and contents.

boy wundyr x14 Nov 2011 2:45 p.m. PST

Thanks as well. Would you say it would be able to handle Star Wars (classic trilogy) straight out of the box or would some tweaking be needed?


Mako1114 Nov 2011 2:47 p.m. PST

Thanks for the detailed overview.

Sounds interesting.

How does body armor work? More dice for the defender?

Also, are there rules for vehicles included too?

tberry740314 Nov 2011 6:21 p.m. PST

I'll get back to you tomorrow, I left the rules back at the office.

Mako11: yes there are vehicle rules. If you want I'll give you a more through review of the vehicle rules tomorrow. As far as body armor goes there are two types Light, basically a flak vest and maybe hard armor plates at strategic sites on the body, and Heavy armor, which is full body hard armor over woven soft armor. Light armor allows the player to re-roll up to 2 DR dice. Heavy armor allows 3 DR dice to be re-rolled.

boy wundyr x: I think it could handle the classic trilogy straight out of the box. The Essence (the Force) has a Light side and a Dark side. There are not-light-sabers. I can give you more tomorrow.

tberry740315 Nov 2011 4:23 a.m. PST


There are no pre-defined vehicles in B&B. You get three basic sizes which you build upon. The Starting Structure of a vehicle is equivalent to a character's Vitality. Vehicles are built with an open crew/passenger compartment.

Each team receives 20 points that can be spent on building one or more vehicles.

Small capable of carrying 2 passengers at most.
Starting Structure: 5
Base Crew: 2
Base DR: 1D
Weapons: 1
Cost: 1pt

Medium passenger vehicle or smaller cargo hauler.
Starting Structure: 10
Base Crew: 6
Base DR: 2D
Weapons: 2
Cost: 2pts

Large mass mover/cargo hauler.
Starting Structure: 15
Base Crew: 12
Base DR: 3D
Weapons: 3
Cost: 3pts

A vehicle must have at least 1D or armor. Armor is added at +1pt per 1D. Size of vehicle determine Max Armor that can be added.

Ground: Wheeled or Tracked

Hover: Uses advanced anti-grav technology

Walker: Has 2, 4, or more legs

Flight: Ignores terrain effects. Cannot be engaged in CC.

All vehicles have a base move of 10cm. Additional "speed" can be purchased: +5cm, +10cm, +20cm.

Walkers can only purchase +5cm.


Closed Compartment

Combat Computer – can move and fire in the same turn.

Extra Crew Compartment carries 2 additional crew or passengers. Medium vehicle can select once. Large vehicles can select 3 times.

Heavy Armor re-roll 2 dice on Armor Goal Rolls.

Independent does not need pilot.

Multi-Attack can make two attacks.

No Crew carries no crew or passengers. Must have Robot Brain and Independent traits. This has a NEGATIVE cost.

Robot Brain must have Independent trait. 4D attack and defense Goal Rolls. May Move and Shoot during the same turn.

Select weapons from the Character and Force Creation list.
Player can and +1DN to a weapon at +1 pt.

Vehicles with CC weapons can attack targets up to 2 cm away.


Hope this helps,

The Other Tim

tberry740315 Nov 2011 4:51 a.m. PST


You must have selected The Essence Warrior attribute and either the Dark Essence Wielder or Essence Wielder Background Trait. Either of these Background Traits double the number of Fate Dice available to you.

You can purchase the following Essence Powers.

Uses of these power requires the expenditure of a number of Fate Dice. These dice regenerate at the beginning of each turn.

Absorb Energy – dissipate blaster fire.

Cloub Minds – "These are not the droids your looking for."

Deflection – deflects blaster fire and CC weapons.

Disarm – uses The Essence to rip something from an opponent's hand.

Essence Blast

Essence Push/Pull – uses The Essence to repel or attract a target.

Great Haste – adds +5cm to this turns movement.

Great Leap – can leap up to 12cm vertically and 6cm horizontally or 6cm vertically and 12cm horizontally.

Heal – used on self or ally. Heals 1 Vitality Point. Uses up 1 Fate Die for the rest of this game.

Lend Fate – allows friendly characters to use one of the Essence Wielder's Fate dice.


Hope this helps,

The Other Tim

boy wundyr x15 Nov 2011 8:33 a.m. PST

Thanks! This is a buy then. I've tried a few sci-fi rulesets which are good in their own right, but either didn't get the SW feel right or I had to tweak and tweak. And none really got the Force right, even with tweaking.


billthecat15 Nov 2011 11:07 a.m. PST

If you want to run a StarWars game, this is it.

If not, you are probably better served with anything else.

redcoat18 Jul 2013 1:14 a.m. PST

Any firm ETA for the 2nd edition? Very much like the sound of this ruleset.

malleman18 Jul 2013 7:54 p.m. PST

We have used this ruleset a couple of Trek games. It has been a while, but from what I remember it was fun.

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