Happy New Year – 2019 part 1

I’ve been thinking about this update for awhile and just haven’t been able to find the time to do it all in one go, so I’m going to split it into several smaller postings.

I did do a mid year update for 2018 so you would think there would be few things to review, but that isn’t really the case. There have been changes related to jobs, the loss of a friend, some additional work on the house, a couple of new apps I’ve been using, getting out and meeting new gamers, and the regular updates on various projects to cover.

I think I’ll start with an easy one, health and fitness. I see from last year’s New Years posting that I started at 260 lbs which was down from 268 from 2016.

I made some decent progress again this year, primarily around May and then maintaining it through the rest of the year. My actual weight on Jan 2 2018 was 252.5 lbs, which is a pretty good indication of most of the year, I’ve been bouncing between 250 and 255 since my initial drop in May. And, here is a nice little graph that shows my progress throughout the year.

Brent’s Weight 2018
Continue reading ‘Happy New Year – 2019 part 1’ »

Star Trek Adventures

I’ve started working on a Campaign for the new Star Trek Adventures Roleplaying game.  I’m basically going to convert some of the material from my old FASA Star Trek campaign, using some of the ideas and adventures I used in that one, along with some published adventures, some stuff lifted from some of the novels, and some tie ins to the original television series.

The campaign will start in 2269, which puts it after The Original Series (TOS) and part way through The Animated Series (TAS).

The characters will be part of StarFleet Intelligence and their primary goals will be gathering information on Klingon and Orion activities in the area around K7 Space Station, which is along the Federation/Klingon border.  According the “Stellar Cartography” maps, the nearest Starbase in that area is Starbase 46 or Starbase 2.  I’ll probably have them working out of Starbase 2 as it’s also along the border.  Also, Starbase 46 is only mentioned in Star Trek: Discovery, which I’m pretty much ignoring in my campaign.

I am going to have the characters assigned to an Archer Class vessel which comes from the Vanguard series of novels.  I like that it is a small ship, with only 14 crew.  This means I can easily have four to six regular players, and either they can each play a main character and a supporting character, or I can easily create the rest of the crew as Non Player Characters.  It also means the players will have to solve most things themselves rather than calling up the resident expert on the ship, which can happen on the larger ships.  I’ll know exactly what the skill sets of all the crew members will be. 

I also like that the transporter on the ship can only beam one person up or down at a time.  The ship is capable of landing on planets, so that is generally the main method of travel.  It seems like every second published Star Trek adventure includes an ion storm, or strong electromagnetic field around a planet, or something else to prevent transporter use. This will help get around having to do that.

It also allows for the flexibility of having a few guest players from time to time as well.  And, I have a nice set of deck plans from Starship Dynamics.

I was able to scan in the sheets that have the areas accessible to the crew and created a set of deck tiles at miniature scale for those areas.

Archer Tiles

I’ll have them supported by a Ptolemy Class tug with various specialty cargo pods, a throw back to some adventures I ran in FASA’s Triangle Campaign.  I haven’t decided yet if the Triangle will exist in my current campaign or not.

For the first adventure, I’m going to adapt the “Again, Troublesome Tribbles” adventure from the First Edition FASA Star Trek Roleplaying game box set.  I’ve just started working through converting the NPCs, then I’ll try converting the creatures.  And, I’ll change enough things around so that any other old Trekkies that might have played the original may not know exactly what’s going on. 

I’ve got a discussion started on Meetup for those in the Calgary area that might be interested in playing. Whether I go ahead with it will depend on the level of interest. I’d want to get at least four committed players in order to start.

Star Trek Stellar Cartography

I recently picked up the new edition of “Star Trek Stellar Cartography” and thought I would do a comparison between the new 2018 edition to the original 2013 edition.

2018 Edition and 2013 Edition:

(Note, I will be added some additional photographs, links, and some notes on a comparison of the Poster Maps in the near future)

The descriptions on Amazon for the two products are identical:

The Starfleet Reference Library: Stellar Cartography collects together ten original, never-before-seen large-format maps of the Star Trek universe. Pulled from the cartography archives of Starfleet Academy, these beautifully reproduced maps provide a rare opportunity to view the expanse of Federation space (and beyond) through the multiple lenses of the Galaxy’s key players.

The maps include an ancient Vulcan map, a Klingon Empire map from the pre-Organian Peace Treaty era (in the native Klingon), an official Romulan government map of the Empire, a native Cardassian Union map from the Bajor occupation, along with Federation maps from the modern era. Housed in a handsome clamshell case and paired with a fully-illustrated reference book providing detailed information on planets, systems, and topography, this exclusive collection showcases the Star Trek universe like never before.

Continue reading ‘Star Trek Stellar Cartography’ »

Ravenstar Space Stations and Shipyards part 3

Continued from Part 2

Now that everything had been primed, it was time to do the painting.  I wanted to do painting of the Stations and the Shipyards at the same time to make it easy to paint similar features the same way with the same colors to bring a consistent feeling to them all.  Not many comments to make here, just some photos showing what I did. Despite the Testor’s paints showing at the top of this photo, I exclusively used Vallego paints on the miniatures.

Continue reading ‘Ravenstar Space Stations and Shipyards part 3’ »

Ravenstar Space Stations and Shipyards part 1

Last November (2017), Ravenstar Studios had a pre-Christmas sale, so I bought some items that I had been thinking about for quite some time. I picked up the Space Stations that he had available as well as the large Ship Yards kit. The original order actually got lost in the mail somewhere, but he kindly sent out a second one, along with some extras.  The items I ordered were:

Fort Courage Space Station
Missile Platform (2)
Jansen Research Station (2)
DSS McKinzie Space Station
ShipYard – Complete Set

He also included these items in my shipment as extras:

Warden Sensor Station (3)
Freeman Repair Station
Zane Refueling Station
Battle Station Raiden
Typhoons Grace
Fuco Cruiser
Unlisted Federation Expanse ship, similar to Raimus Destroyer but bigger

It all showed up in a fairly typical shipping box:

Everything was packed in nicely with a protective bubble wrap layer

Continue reading ‘Ravenstar Space Stations and Shipyards part 1’ »

Pinterest Fixed

Turns out that the problem with Pinning was due to a change with Pinterest. I still want to investigate and see when this happened, but here is what I got from Tech Suppport at my hosting site:

“What I found was Pinterest did not allow to save pins from an insecure source. SSL was installed for your domain but your website was not using the SSL. I forced your website to redirect to https which is now secured.

There were insecure links on your website, which I corrected to https. All your pages and links are now secured with SSL.”

And, it is working now.