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"Starting new in Spaceship gaming" Topic

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Jonnathon30 Jan 2023 8:17 p.m. PST

Going to start in spaceship gaming, first time. Would like info on types of ships to start with, manufacturers, rules etc. These could be plastic or metal. Have limited funds.
Would like to get 2 fleets? or groups. No Star Wars or Star Trek, (Too expensive) my buddy says. Any info/recommendations appreciated.

Thanks J.

Bashytubits30 Jan 2023 8:50 p.m. PST

It would be easier to help you if you defined your gaming budget. A company that makes very reasonably priced ships is Studio Bergstrom and if you go on Etsy there are loads of 3d printed ships for sale. If you or any of your friends have a 3d printer Thingiverse has a bunch of free STL files for making your own spaceships.

Thresher0130 Jan 2023 9:26 p.m. PST

Studio Bergstrom, as mentioned, does nice minis, including those for Battlestar Galactica.

Free rules for various SciFi genres are available online.

Toaster30 Jan 2023 9:42 p.m. PST

Full Thrust are the best free rules going (and some of the best rules regardless of cost to boot). Ships can be brought, made, or you can find top down counters to print in 2D for a really cheap start and expand to real models later. Some people even make their fleets out of Lego.


Stryderg31 Jan 2023 7:59 a.m. PST

Go to a dollar store, get some wooden clothes pins: link
Start chopping, carving and gluing.
These were made from the spring pins: link

You don't need many different types of ships for a decent game:
destroyer, cruiser, battleship, carrier (and something to mark missiles and fighters, maybe toothpicks)

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP31 Jan 2023 8:11 a.m. PST

Plastic wall anchors, aka "mollies", can make great ships, too. They come in all sorts of sizes:


These are also available:


Stryderg31 Jan 2023 10:00 a.m. PST

I bought a batch of those toy-space-cruisers after being inspired by a guy who chopped them up and added bits to them. He made a fleet of various sized ships using those parts. I never got past ordering the minis. :(
I'll have to try and find his pics again.

Stryderg31 Jan 2023 10:06 a.m. PST

Lots of pics of those space cruisers and other suggestions here: link

Andrew Walters31 Jan 2023 10:42 a.m. PST

Spaceships are the easiest and most fun thing to scratch build. I have a whole box of dollar store bits that are going to become fleets, someday.

Jonnathon31 Jan 2023 1:32 p.m. PST

Thanks for the input. Might have a look at the local "Dollar Store", they carry toys. My buddy came up with "GZG" and "Brigade Minis?" as possible sources. Any feed back in regards to these ranges. Thanks J.

Jonnathon31 Jan 2023 1:37 p.m. PST

We are going to increase our budget based on feedback received so far. Have no choice in order to have a good game.

Stryderg31 Jan 2023 3:06 p.m. PST

Direct link to the lite version of Full Thrust (something like 10 pages): PDF link
The full rules can be found here: link

Oberlindes Sol LIC Supporting Member of TMP31 Jan 2023 9:47 p.m. PST

Agreed on Full Thrust as an excellent place to start, and on scratch building ships -- for the fun of it even more than cost.

I have made ships out of the bodies of ballpoint pens and small box cutters. You just have to look at things correctly.

Toaster31 Jan 2023 9:52 p.m. PST

GZG and Brigade are both outstanding. GZG is also the publisher of Full Thrust so their ships tie in directly. Brigade's ships are all in the same size range (it's not really a scale) as GZG's and Full Thrust stats for them are available here link


Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP01 Feb 2023 10:27 p.m. PST

I have some of GZG's line. Unfortunately, the larger ships I had bent and broke at a thin area of the metal. Otherwise they're impressive looking ships. I will say the scale is sizable, but many ships are in this scale.

I also have Studio Bergstrom's Hive Fleet, which are grand looking and very alien (almost buggy) in an HR Giger style. I painted them with "hammered" green metallic spray paint from Rustoleum, and then just added bits of bright color for (possible) weapons points and the engine blasts. Easiest paint job I ever did. Great ships as biologic foes.

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP01 Feb 2023 10:47 p.m. PST

As for rules, I humbly submit GOBS! (Generic Outlandishly Big Spacefleets!) by yours truly. It's a fast and flexible (and generic) rule system for massive fleet battles at an admiral's level. Each ship is two lines of code on the record sheet— for example:

BS Cardigan SC-1 T5 M2 Sh 2L 3Ph 2PC Qt3 Pt4 Systems: S W J H M T BOOM

Which means "Battleship Cardigan, Size Class -1, Thrust 5, Maneuver 2, Shields, 2 Lasers, 3 Phasers, 2 Plasma Cannons, 3 Quantum torpedoes, 4 Photon torpedoes. Systems: Shields Weapons Jammer Hyperdrive Maneuver Thrust Boom (i.e., blowing up).

Damage is recorded by striking across the Systems bit from left to right— 1 slash for damaged, two slashes for destroyed, BOOM circled for utter, glorious destruction.

So, rather obviously, an entire fleet of over 20 ships can be tracked on one side of a single sheet of paper. And that's it for record keeping.

In any case, it's free:

Oberlindes Sol LIC Supporting Member of TMP04 Feb 2023 11:56 a.m. PST

Thanks, Parzival. Looking forward to reading and trying them out.

Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP04 Feb 2023 2:34 p.m. PST

This and earlier comments have sparked me to return to revisions I was making on GOBS, which got sidelined by a computer crash. (I'm having to reconstruct it from old files, which for some reason the latest version of Pages will not open— well, it will open it, but then locks up trying to open the images in the page layout— a dialog box appears with a process bar appears, but the process bar won't advance, and the box's "cancel" button doesn't function, and the menus won't respond, and the app won't even Quit. Have to Force Quit it every single time.
Fortunately, I'd made a PDF, which I am using the cut and paste into a new Pages document… one section at a time. frown
But I'll probably have to rebuild the example images from scratch…frown frown

In the meantime, players of GOBS are encouraged to increase the Thrust value of all ships by 2, to speed up the process of closing to combat a bit; the original values proved to be too slow. I also strictly use a square grid, which works fine for space combat (it's all abstracted anyway), but hexes and rulers are still a go if that's what you've got.

Capt Flash09 Feb 2023 3:16 a.m. PST

Sling in'

Good game!! Lots of fun!

ROUWetPatchBehindTheSofa09 Feb 2023 1:26 p.m. PST

Depends on stock and postage probably kills saving depending where you are in the world, but the Plastic Soldier Company sell bags of excess ships from their Red Alert game.



I have some and I like them.
TMP link

Morpheus197508 Mar 2023 1:08 p.m. PST

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