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"Satisfaction: 15mm Sci-Fi Rules" Topic

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Action Log

26 May 2012 5:56 p.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

  • Changed title from "Satisfaction: 15mm Sc-Fi Rules" to "Satisfaction: 15mm Sci-Fi Rules"

23 Sep 2017 3:49 p.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

  • Removed from TMP Poll Suggestions board

3,649 hits since 26 May 2012
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian26 May 2012 5:56 p.m. PST

On a scale of 1 to 10, how satisfied are you with the current crop of sci-fi rules for use with your 15mm armies? Where 10 is totally satisfied, and 1 is totally dissatisfied.

infojunky26 May 2012 6:18 p.m. PST

Is "Meh" a number? It feels like a 5 from here.

But that isn't just 15mm centric rulesets, it is all of them…

Chef Lackey Rich Fezian Inactive Member26 May 2012 6:30 p.m. PST

I'm at about an 8. There's some terrific stuff out there, and most of it can be hybridized with a little effort to help combine the strengths of different rules sets.

Lfseeney26 May 2012 6:34 p.m. PST

For fun and fast, 8. It Came From Beyond The Still
Is a great game to set up and have a lot of fun, the rules are light and fade away to let th e silliness come through.

For more serious SciFi Rulesets, I stll have not found something I really crave.
For games like this I dislike one offs, and such.
If I can win the game by getting all my troops destroyed, seems hollow, as I know the next battle my troops should be wary if not afraid of their commander.

Would like a ruleset that takes into account this is a battle not the entire war.


Only Warlock26 May 2012 7:15 p.m. PST

9. Very satisfied but still room for improvement.

Willtij Inactive Member26 May 2012 7:59 p.m. PST

Just call me Pollyanna but I am going to say 10. Sure nothings perfect but neither am I and there is no way I could write anything better than some of whats out there. Sometimes you gotta get to a point when good is good enough and just enjoy yourself.

GoGators Inactive Member26 May 2012 8:10 p.m. PST

This period keeps tempting me. What rules make you a 9 or 10 for squad to platoon level…

Willtij Inactive Member26 May 2012 8:18 p.m. PST


Joep123 Supporting Member of TMP26 May 2012 8:34 p.m. PST

I'd say an 8.
We really enjoy playing Tomorrows War in 15mm, but the rule book could use some tweaking (IMHO).

The G Dog Fezian Inactive Member26 May 2012 8:36 p.m. PST


I could not ask for more.

Personal logo Bashytubits Supporting Member of TMP26 May 2012 9:34 p.m. PST

I cannot be happy until there is a ruleset that inculcates Zardoz and Boobies properly.

McWong7326 May 2012 10:41 p.m. PST

Skirmish and platoon level I would give a 7 or 8. Yet to find a company level or higher level game that really works for me.

Mako11 Inactive Member26 May 2012 11:17 p.m. PST


The thing I find really annoying is having to compress the game scales to deal with the really fast grav tanks, VTOLs, and orbital capable ground attack fighters, and their long weapons ranges.

Perhaps if I ran some games out in the desert in Nevada, with GPS coordinates, and laser rangefinders, that might work, as far as playing space goes.

Of course moving them would be another issue to resolve as well each turn.

Then, there's the heat…..

Big Ian Inactive Member27 May 2012 1:38 a.m. PST

Depends on which rules i am playing, but between 7-9.

Calico Bill27 May 2012 2:17 a.m. PST

I agree with infojunky, Meh or 5. Lots of skirmish rules which have 1 or 2 great ideas, but the rest of it much less so. What I really want is higher than skirmish, and I've found nothing much there.(so back to 6mm).

Lion in the Stars27 May 2012 3:31 a.m. PST

I agree with McWong. The platoon level (Tomorrow's War) is very well done, probably an 8 for me.

But there's no scifi equivalent of Flames of War. I want to be able to run a company to a battalion on the table.

That brings my overall satisfaction down to about a 5 or 6.

Karaz123 Inactive Member27 May 2012 4:30 a.m. PST

i give it an 8.
15mm is a scale which should be played at platoon level or a bit up. gives just the right unit density on a normal table.

as in all sf, you can do pretty much what you like and for larger scale battles you can use the ast array of 6mm rules with an easy rebase. for that i peronally prefer future war comander but epic comes to mind as tried and tested. many many excellent rules out there. I see no reason to develop yet another rule set, dedicated to big battles.

and if all else fails design your own twitst to your favourite rules, like an sf module for fow for example.

Andrew Beasley Inactive Member27 May 2012 4:34 a.m. PST

Depends on the set.

They run from a 2 up to a 7.

pzivh43 Supporting Member of TMP27 May 2012 5:09 a.m. PST

A 7 or 8 for me. Still room for improvement.

Stepman327 May 2012 6:20 a.m. PST

As Joep123 stated, about an "8". We often game together and our group enjoys TW. The book is wonderful eye candy but the translation of the rules gets confused with different views of the players. Some nice one page flow charts might be a nice addition. Short and concise(sp)…

I also relly like the FUBAR rules and GASLIGHT…

Chef Lackey Rich Fezian Inactive Member27 May 2012 6:22 a.m. PST

But there's no scifi equivalent of Flames of War. I want to be able to run a company to a battalion on the table.

Hard to be sure given limited data at this point, but it's possible that Hawk Wargames' upcoming Dropship Commander will scratch that itch. It's 10mm rather than 15mm, but scale differences never stopped anyone from cribbing game mechanics or playing with proxies instead.

Privateer4hire Inactive Member27 May 2012 7:10 a.m. PST

I'd say I'm at about a 9.

FoW is something I use for 15mm sci-fi.
You can reskin the various existing lists and tweak things like regimental/division choices to flavor different nations/alien races.

Another vote for FUBAR as well.

Only Warlock27 May 2012 7:24 a.m. PST

Tomorrow's War, 5150 Star Army, Gruntz, Use.Me, all great stuff

khurasanminiatures Inactive Member27 May 2012 7:25 a.m. PST

And here I was hoping it was a set of 15mm sci fi rules based on the 1988 movie starring TV's Justine Bateman and Julia Roberts!


Pretty happy from a manufacturers perspective, but from a player's … no idea! Wish I had time to play! Well, expansion of figure ranges won't last forever (can't really) and maybe then I'll be able to settle in and answer this.

I actually know of a rules set in development that is going to make a lot of people here very happy! Mums the word for now though.

Personal logo Weasel Supporting Member of TMP27 May 2012 8:43 a.m. PST

The present day is pretty much the golden age when it comes to wargame rules. So much cool stuff out there, more coming all the time and the barrier of entry for publishing your rules is lower than ever.

11 out of 10.

GypsyComet27 May 2012 10:32 a.m. PST

8 to 9. Increasing selection of rules and coverage within the genre, but some of these guys could use an editor a lot more than they have.

(Jake Collins of NZ 2) Inactive Member27 May 2012 12:54 p.m. PST

Probably a 6 overall. A huge cluster of rulesets at the skirmish up to platoon a side level. Not sure any of them has completely cracked it, but at least plenty of choice with some good options for those who don't want to be tied to a particular universe or single miniature manufacturer.

Nothing has convinced me yet at company-level. The big void as others have said if you want to push more than a platoon or two and don't want the Hammers Slammers universe or to only use Critical Mass figures/universe.

Some useful options at battalion-level, although FWC feels too generic to me, and Strike Legion too finicky. Room for a killer app here as well.

Samulus Inactive Member27 May 2012 12:57 p.m. PST

5 or 6. But I'm pretty fussy. There's good stuff, it just doesn't quite do what I want it to and some of it doesn't quite make sense. Gruntz and Critical Mass are getting there.

Personal logo Toy Soldier Green Supporting Member of TMP27 May 2012 4:12 p.m. PST


Capitan Chinchilla Inactive Member27 May 2012 5:16 p.m. PST

Don´t worry about company-sized rules . In a few months Too Fat Lardies will publish the Sci-fi version of the popular IABSM (called "Get Your Frickin'Tentacle Out Of My Face" or GYFTOOF) rules .

You can find a preview around here:

And the original adaptation of the IABSM (2nd edition) rules comes with this special:


After reading the article in the special , I began to write my own mod of the IABSM rules for Sci-fi , but after hearing that TFL is going to grace us with a complete ruleset , I decided to wait for the new and joyful rukebook .

Hope this helps someone…

Sergeant Crunch Inactive Member27 May 2012 5:48 p.m. PST

I'm at about a 7.

I bought Tomorrow's War and really like the concepts, but the reaction rules are too complex to explain to my usual opponents (my 12 and 8 year old boys). I just need to convince some people locally to try it out and play it with grown-ups…well, people older than my kids anyway.

I'm liking FUBAR, but it will need some tweaking on my part to fit some of my preferences before I'm totally happy with it. But the biggest thing in it's favor is that the kids had fun the first time we tried it

I read the beta for Gruntz and don't like the fixed unit size and the writing style put me off for some reason.

I bought FWC for 6mm gaming and while the abstraction of units works for 6mm, I want a little more detail at 15mm.

I haven't bought USE ME or other 15mm sets to make a judgement.

Micman Supporting Member of TMP27 May 2012 8:06 p.m. PST

5 to 8 is how I where I am at. It depends on the size of the battle or how many players.

I have most of the published rules mentioned in this thread. Currently Tomorrows War is my favorite for skirmish games. Just finished running a TW game today at Enfilade with 6 players. That is really the most I feel you an have play it. ( 2 squads and one vehicle per player). Looking forward to the Gruntz 1.1 release, I have read the rules and have much the same feelings as Sergeant Crunch. Same with USE ME and Fubar. I have not tried 5150 yet.

What I want is a company/battalion sized game but not FOW dice crazy. TW uses too many dice now.

Glad to see some new rules sets on the way,


Rassilon Inactive Member27 May 2012 10:00 p.m. PST

8-10 for SGII if used as designed… havent been able to join my local group of TW players yet but I get reports and it sounds decent just not what I was expecting game size wise (thanks Dale, sorry I missed your game today, I was so caught up with my WAB tourney that I forgot to take a breath and look around at any of the sunday games this year).

But in general only a 5 as there seems to be a lack of systems other than FWC where you can smoothly run a minimum of a coy of 15's on each side, particularly within the constraints of a con where we can really show off all these great miniatures were gobbling up these days.

My buddy and I did once run a giant game of SGII at Enfilade, but we had to run it multiple periods and do a little bit of house cleaning for the follow up game… It worked out, but boy was it a slog and hard on the GM's. :)

Krazy Ivan Inactive Member27 May 2012 11:27 p.m. PST

I am a fan of Gruntz personally. With that in mind I would rate my satisfaction around a 7 or 8.

Why is it that Defiance by Majestic Twelve Games never comes up in these conversations? To complicated perhaps?

EvinW89 Inactive Member28 May 2012 4:54 a.m. PST

I havent' played any other 15mm set than Tomorrow's War, and I'm realy happy with it. I played Force on Force a lót, and realy love how they introduced sci-fi into the rules.

RTJEBADIA28 May 2012 5:34 a.m. PST

So based on this thread no one (or almost no one) plays--
1) 5150
2) Blasters and Bulkheads
3) Defiance

I've never played 3, but 1 and 2 are my favorites. With that in mind, probably a 9.

For me, games like Gruntz and TW (seem to be the two big games) are good but not good enough to get regular playing, but compared to history they'd be considered the best games around, IMO, 10-15 years ago. So they'd probably satisfy me as 7's or 8's.

GypsyComet28 May 2012 9:09 a.m. PST

"I read the beta for Gruntz and don't like the fixed unit size and the writing style put me off for some reason."

The unit sizes will be more variable with the next rev, we're told. Can't help with the writing style, though there are a couple offers on the table for editing once Robin finishes with the rules revisions.

WillieB Supporting Member of TMP28 May 2012 9:55 a.m. PST

Really like Tomorrows War but not too keen on the layout of the book, Sometimes rather confusing.
OTOH on the Ambush Alley forum any question gets answered at lightspeed.

Still a big fan of Stargrunt II however which I feel was one of the best rulesystems ever, except for the close combat sequences. No support whatsoever though.

Jeff W Inactive Member28 May 2012 10:08 a.m. PST

Gruntz has been the game that's seen the most play here, I'm pretty happy with it for the most part. Fubar and FAD have seen a few plays as well, and some others we've only tried out once.

I'd give the lot a 7; the only one that probably won't see play again is FAD.

@GetWrecked- I think that's the big downside of Defiance. I own the PDF for my tablet. I like crunchy games, but haven't tried too hard to get anyone else to play, yet.

Scorpio Inactive Member30 May 2012 10:44 a.m. PST

I'd go with 8. Plenty to play right now, in a couple different scifi styles (Gruntz, Blasters & Bulkheads, The Department.) Can't bring myself to go for a 9 or 10 because I am always, always willing to entertain a new ruleset to fill the void I didn't know was there (i.e., how The Department made it to the list above.) (Like, say, a good solid scifi dungeoncrawl version of B&B…)

MiniatureReview30 May 2012 3:53 p.m. PST

I really like the rules that ACP Games put out. I remember one game where I was getting the snot kicked out of me and somehow the game turned around and I won. I like rules that allow that to happen.

Alien Squad Leader is pretty cool because there are so many different armies to choose from and they all have a different flavor to them.

For some reason though GW players don't seem to enjoy any of these rules unless it has GW in it's name.

Probably an 8.

TeknoMerk31 May 2012 6:18 a.m. PST

I would say an 8, because no one set has everything I want. Like others, I use borrow/modify bits from other rules.

company actions: Gruntz with added bits
skirmish: 5150 Star Army

borrow from:
Tomorrow's War, FUBAR

RTJEBADIA31 May 2012 7:44 a.m. PST

TeknoMerk, what do you borrow from TW and FUBAR for 5150 SA? (Just curious)

TeknoMerk01 Jun 2012 6:32 a.m. PST


I should have better clarified. The borrowings are all for Gruntz. At the skirmish level, I like 5150 SA just like it is. I was also expressing my rules interest at the same time.

isdblues Inactive Member07 Jun 2012 4:48 a.m. PST

Not to bring this thread back from the dead but only just saw it…

Tend to use Blasters & Bulkheads for most games as we like small scale skirmishes, we'd give it an 8/9 – pretty much satisfied, does the job well.

We also use a home-brew ruleset for "Generic encompass everything" gaming, btbh it's a bit of a mess!

Weyland-Yutani created Terminators hunting Aliens whilst being attacked by Wargames Factory Space Nazis who are escaping Zombies… my head hurts thinking about it.

Even created an excel workbook to help with force creation etc…

charlest Inactive Member07 Jun 2012 8:30 a.m. PST

I'm about a 7.

I really like the concepts of Tomorrow's War, but the book is horribly laid out. It's a bear to come back to after having not played in several months. Anyone know of a thorough QRS? The official one is sorely lacking.

OP4S is pretty damn awesome, but currently in beta. Believe the rules are undergoing some major changes at the moment.

I purchased the Department and liked what I read, but have not gotten a chance to play it yet.

SheriffLee Inactive Member07 Jun 2012 11:00 a.m. PST

10 Tomrrow's War
9 Gruntz, but it is easilier to play than TW

Golan2072 Inactive Member07 Jun 2012 1:12 p.m. PST

I kinda like USE ME, but I'm not totally neutral about this as I did write some of its booklets.

But I'm looking for suggestions for a more complex ruleset for bigger games; FAD5 and GRUNTZ are currently my favourites, but I'm open to new ideas.

freecloud Inactive Member13 Jun 2012 4:24 a.m. PST

Which rules will allow the biggest battle 15mm in your opinion?

(Allow = fairly quick play, finish in an evening, minimise book keeping etc etc)

Farstar Inactive Member13 Jun 2012 10:27 a.m. PST

With a little dice prep (such as one of those clear lidded storage tray things so you can roll a pile and already have them separated into pairs) Gruntz will handle a reinforced platoon (or short company) of individually based infantry (say, 50-70 men) in a timely fashion. You will be looking at stat cards that track damage if you go for vehicles, but it is a simple damage track, not Battletech (or even Silent Death).

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