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Maneuver-centric ship-to-ship minis game of space combat in the Traveller RPG setting. Help us bring 3D to the Third Imperium!
Maneuver-centric ship-to-ship minis game of space combat in the Traveller RPG setting. Help us bring 3D to the Third Imperium!
290 backers pledged $23,339 to help bring this project to life.

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Thrilling Space Combat in the Traveller Universe!

The original "sandbox" science fiction universe, Traveller has kept hundreds of thousands of gamers entertained, their imaginations yearning for the next star over, warming up the jump drive, and seeing what new horizons have to offer.

Squadron Strike is the award-winning toolbox game of space combat, able to provide the detail of dedicated licensed games, while letting players design any weapon or any ship from any universe, all in 3D, with optional 2D exports.

What do you get when you combine them?  The Third Imperium's Navy in three dimensions!

Features

Squadron Strike: Traveller uses fully Newtonian movement, including displacement for constant thrust, something that has never appeared in a Traveller game. (To old Squadron Strike hands, Squadron Strike: Traveller uses "Mode 2" movement without fuel.)

The game has a play-through tutorial, that teaches the game over multiple scenarios, starting in 2D and eventually going to 3D. (3D movement has never been in Traveller space combat before. Squadron Strike makes it easy.)

The game focuses on the ships of the Fifth Frontier War. Each ship comes in a 2D and a 3D version. All of the ships also come with an extra variant in 3D.

Traveller Implementation

Squadron Strike: Traveller is unabashedly a "big ships" Traveller implementation. The smallest ship it covers is 1000 dtons. It is NOT the game to break out for your PCs trying to pull a high-G slingshot maneuver in their Beowulf-class free trader to get the drop on a Gazelle-class escort. (However, see below!)

The ships are built in the Squadron Strike rules to replicate Traveller features. Squadron Strike's deep toolbox allows us to capture the feel of Traveller, while giving you the tactical depth and fun on-the-map play of Squadron Strike.

The Narrative of Battle

Shoals of missiles blot out the stars in the initial phases of a Traveller naval battle. Escorts shoot down missiles so bigger, more valuable ships can maneuver freely. Ships thrust and pivot to line up massive spinal weapons to get a killing strike. Sandcasters ablate beam damage, while meson guns can ignore armor while delivering devastatingly powerful strikes. Jump drives require significant fuel reserves, and multiple turns to warm up. Black globes render you temporarily invulnerable and unable to thrust or fire.  

All of the classic Traveller systems are here, in enough detail to make squadron-on-squadron combat fun and engaging.

Even non-technological details, like Zhodani psionics and the "ten planetary radii" Jump limit are part of the game. On top of that, we have overviews of the history of the Third Imperium, focusing on Naval history, and essays on 3rd Imperium Naval Doctrine that have never been been seen before, including class histories and development foibles for every ship in the game.

RPG Implementation & Integration

We're working on the RPG-scale "small ships" product, and have class histories and an artist lined up to do illustrations. Squadron Strike: Traveller has playtest rules for using PC skill rolls to modify Squadron Strike mechanics. We need Squadron Strike: Traveller to succeed so we have a player base to rigorously test the RPG rules integration for "small ship" Traveller, and to tell us what needs to be more RPG-focused rather than minis game focused. Barring a design miracle, the RPG-scale book will have more than one solution for "what to do when the PCs ship gets shot at."

How Does It Play?

Squadron Strike is a maneuver-centric game of miniatures combat, with a sweet spot of two-to-five ships per player. A large fleet action is an event for an entire gaming club. You will always be looking ahead at where your ship and the enemy ship will be, trying to finesse the range or angle of incoming damage, while getting your gigantic spinal mount into arc to unleash hell.

Once you're fluid with the game, turns take six to ten minutes each, and complete games can be done in ten to fifteen turns. In playtest, we have had the "classic meson gun shot" happen more than once: sometimes, meson guns one-shot kill intact ships.

3D Display

Squadron Strike can be played with miniatures in 2D, or in 3D with specialized bases.  What it's played with out of the box are box miniatures and tilt blocks.

Box miniatures are die cut cardstock that fold into boxes, like so:

They get folded up like this:

As Kickstarter backer rewards, we offer box mini stiffeners.

If you put put weights inside, the stiffeners can contain them.  The weights roll to the bottom of the box mini when they're in tilt blocks (like so).

And we show altitude with colored tiles.  White is one altitude level, light blue is four, dark blue is sixteen and black is a minus sign.

The die cut box miniature sheets are a large part of what this Kickstarter is funding.  We own the dies, it's just printing and die cutting fees.

What's in the Box?

Squadron Strike: Traveller will have three countersheets of box miniatures for the Traveller universe, covering Zhodani and Imperial ships, with a few Aslan for a variety of opponents. It will have a sixty-page book with ships ready to be photocopied and flown, a tutorial booklet to teach you the game, and a setting-and-scenario booklet covering the District 268 campaign at the opening of the Fifth Frontier War. It also has the rulebook, laminated play aids, plastic tilt blocks, stacking tiles and hex maps from the Squadron Strike boxed setAside from writing implements, everything you need to play is in the box.

What's in the Folio?

Squadron Strike: Traveller's folio product has all the Traveller-specific material (countersheets and booklets) packaged as a supplement for the Squadron Strike boxed set. If you already own Squadron Strike, this is the one to pick.

Shipping Details

All printed products will be shipped via USPS Priority Mail. The appropriate shipping price has been added to each of the reward levels for Canada, US, European Union and Australian customers.

Conclusion

We want to bring the fun of space combat to the Newtonian universe of Traveller, and we feel that Squadron Strike: Traveller is the space combat game that Traveller fans have deserved for nearly forty years. With your help, we can bring it to market, and let players fully experience the deadly dance of maneuver that Traveller space combat should be.

Stretch Goals 

Thanks to you glorious people, I've got to think about these while on the road, and away from my quotations files, so these will be a bit haphazard and conservative.  

Stretch Goal 1: Countersheet #4 (AKA "Mike Was Right.") -- $6,500

SS Traveller was spec'd out to have three counter sheets - the mix of counters is shown on one of the FAQs, down below. Mike Llaneza, the Traveller line developer, really wanted four countersheets. I said adding the fourth countersheet would make the price too high for the boxed game. This stretch goal, if hit, would add a fourth countersheet with the following counters to the physical products, and will not change the asking price of any of the physical products, even the ones with box mini stiffeners.

Plankwell #2
Viepchakl #2
Atlantic #3
Atlantic #4
Gionetti #3
Gionetti #4
Afteasea #2
Elsyel #4
Zhdiak #5
Vlezhdatl #4
P.F. Sloan #5
P.F. Sloan #6

Stretch Goal 2: New Traveller Minis -- $8,500

After looking over several suggestions, I've decided to put up minis in fleet boxes.  We're putting out two "old" fleet boxes for people who don't have them, updating the minis counts to better match how ships get used in actual play.  For people who already own the fleet boxes, there's a third fleet box that has nothing but the new minis, including the Gazelle close escort.  And for the people who are very very generous, we have a "bundle of fleet boxes" which is all three fleet boxes combined, coupled with the other RPG-scale minis.

Aslan DD, CA, CH
Aslan DD, CA, CH
Imp PF Sloan, Skimkish, Atlantic
Imp PF Sloan, Skimkish, Atlantic
Zhodani Vlezhdatl and Driafria
Zhodani Vlezhdatl and Driafria
Gazelle and its launch
Gazelle and its launch

Stretch Goal 3: Upgraded Paper Maps -- $12,500 

One of the cost-cutting decisions I made twelve years ago when printing Attack Vector was very basic hex maps, with black ink on white and blue paper. These maps are serviceable, and they work in all of our games. The Birds of Prey guys love their side of the blue maps with the small hexes. 

However, they're not black, and they don't have a pretty starfield on them. If we hit this stretch goal, I'll be printing the maps you can download here and including them in the boxed sets for SS Traveller and all of my space games going forward. (If you already own one of my space game titles, there will be an opportunity to buy these maps via BackerKit.)

These new maps, for those who didn't immediately download the gigantic zipped PDF file on their phone, will make a 4'x6' play area, with 32 hexes of width by 36 hexes of height (this is two more hexes of width than the old maps). The hexes are numbered continuously over the entire area, and each half has the A-F rosette in the center, with the letters A and D color coded to match the AVID cards. The top map has a red nebular background and the bottom map has a blue nebular background, to offer a subtle reminder of which AVID cards to set up on which edge. Specially marked hexes will make scenario setups a bit easier.

Stretch Goal 4: AVID Stress Ball -- $21,000

When I demo the game at conventions, I have a stress ball that I've hand colored (badly) with the rings of the AVID on it. I've been told by everyone who's seen it that "Hey, you should totally sell those. I'd buy one. They make it immediately obvious what the AVID is."

Here are the art specs.

AVID Ball. Production versions will be 2" diameter.
AVID Ball. Production versions will be 2" diameter.

Risks and challenges

This is a project that uses techniques and components we use for the other Ad Astra boxed games. There is nothing in this that we have not successfully done before.

At the time we launched this Kickstarter, the setting-and-scenario booklet was edited, the tutorial booklet was in final edits, and the SSD booklet had been laid out. The countersheets have been laid out, and the folio cover and box wrap are laid out and ready to send to the printer.

On the first business day after this project reaches its funding goal, I'll send the print job to the printers to minimize the delay in shipping games to backers.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

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    Show your support by pledging a dollar - you'll still be eligible to add items to your pledge when the BackerKit phase happens.

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    Squadron Strike: Traveller (SSD PDFs)

    This PDF has just the SSDs for Traveller ships. It has no background or setting material, not even the class histories for the Traveller warships. It's an easy entry option for someone who already owns Squadron Strike and just wants the ships in the cheapest manner possible.

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    Squadron Strike: Traveller (Traveller Game PDF bundle)

    This is the PDF copy of the Traveller materials from Squadron Strike: Traveller. It does not include a PDF of the Squadron Strike rulebook - look at the $15 PDF bundle for that. It's meant for people who already own Squadron Strike and just want the Traveller material in electronic form.

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    Upgraded Paper Space Map

    These are the new paper space maps that have a nice color coded star field on the background and other tagging to make setting games up easier, and make them look better on the table.

    Select this reward if you already own either AV:T or Squadron Strike. If you already selected a boxed game in this Kickstarter, you don't need to select this goal.

    If you selected the folio product, see the additional pledge level at $67 - it's the same as adding $12 to your pledge, but I get a written record of it.

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    Squadron Strike: Traveller (Full Game PDF bundle)

    This is the PDF copy of the Traveller materials from Squadron Strike: Traveller. It includes a PDF of the Squadron Strike It's meant for people who want the Traveller material and the Squadron Strike rulebook material in electronic form.

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    AVID Stress Ball

    This is a stress ball colored to match the bands and windows of the AVID; it's custom formed and 2" in diameter, so it's (barely) small enough to fit in the box if you squish it.

    If you want to add one to an existing pledge for a boxed game, please just add $18 for the stress ball.

    If you want to add one to any other pledge, please add $25 for the US, $30 for Canada, or $40 for EU/everywhere else.

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    Ad Astra Challenge Coin

    This is the Ad Astra Challenge Coin, with the company logo on one side and the AVID, with "Attitude Makes All The Difference" on the reverse.

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    Ball & Space Bundle

    This is a bundle of the upgraded paper maps, and the AVID stress ball. Because of the weird combination of shapes it's awkward to ship, so it has to go in a Medium USPS box.

    Get this bundle if you want PDFs and these components. It's better for you, shipping wise, to follow the instructions on the stress ball, to add that to other pledges.

    If you want to add this bundle to any other pledge, please add $43 for the US, $75 for Canada, or $97 for EU/Australia/everywhere else.

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    Squadron Strike: Traveller (Folio + PDF Bundle)

    This is the product for people who ALREADY OWN Squadron Strike 2nd Edition. It contains the Traveller material ONLY. It also include the PDF versions of the Traveller material. It does not include the Squadron Strike rules, or a PDF version of the Squadron Strike rulebook.

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    Imperial Fleet Box 1:

    This is the revamped Imperial Fleet Box.

    1 Plankwell BB
    2 Azhanti High Lightning CFs
    2 Gionetti CLs
    4 Fer-de-lance ES
    4 Chrysanthemum ES

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    Zhodani Fleet Box 1:

    This is the revamped Zhodani Fleet Box.

    1 Viepchakl BB
    2 Kefchenzh CA
    2 Zhdavidlits CL
    8 Zhdiak DH

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    "All The New Minis" Fleet Box

    These are all the minis we're adding to the Traveller line with this stretch goal.

    Aslan DDL Elsyel:
    Aslan CA Alteasea
    Aslan CA Hroilriea
    Imp CA Atlantic
    Imp CVL Skimkish
    Imp ES P.F.Sloan
    Zho CV Driafria
    Zho CS Vlezhdatl

    Gazelle and Launch (RPG scale, two minis)

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    Squadron Strike: Traveller (Folio + PDF + Map Bundle)

    This is the product for people who ALREADY OWN Squadron Strike 2nd Edition. It contains the Traveller material ONLY. It also include the PDF versions of the Traveller material. It does not include the Squadron Strike rules, or a PDF version of the Squadron Strike rulebook.

    It does add the new map added at the $12 pledge level to the $55 level for people who want maps with starfields. Both will ship in the same envelope.

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    Squadron Strike: Traveller (Boxed Game)

    This is the Deluxe Edition of Squadron Strike Traveller, as a boxed game. It is the same as Squadron Strike 2nd Edition, only it replaces the Empire/Directorate War content with Squadron Strike Traveller.

    It also includes the PDFs of all the materials.

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    Squadron Strike: Traveller (Boxed Game & Accessories Bundle)

    This is the Deluxe Edition of Squadron Strike Traveller, as a boxed game. It is the same as Squadron Strike 2nd Edition, only it replaces the Empire/Directorate War content with Squadron Strike Traveller.

    This bundle includes Box Miniature stiffeners for the game, and the PDFs of the Squadron Strike Rulebook, and PDFs of all the Traveller content.

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    Squadron Strike 2nd Edition & Traveller Folio Bundle

    This is Squadron Strike 2nd Edition, with a folio edition of Squadron Strike: Traveller, plus PDFs of the content for both settings. This gives you the Empire/Directorate War setting and the Traveller setting information, doubling the amount of fun you can get in the box.

    This bundle also includes Box Miniature stiffeners for both the game and the folio product.

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    "Every Single Traveller Mini" Invasion Box

    This has the minis of the three fleet boxes listed above, plus an Imperial Type S Scout, a Beowulf Free Trader, and two Pinnaces. It's provided as a single bundle to reduce shipping costs.

    These will pack a VHS cassette tape box to the brim.

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    Squadron Strike 2nd Edition & Traveller Folio Bundle Super Deluxe Edition

    This is Squadron Strike 2nd Edition, with a folio edition of Squadron Strike: Traveller, plus PDFs of the content for both settings. This gives you the Empire/Directorate War setting and the Traveller setting information, doubling the amount of fun you can get in the box.

    This bundle also includes Box Miniature stiffeners for both the game and the folio product. It replaces the laminated cards with dye sublimation cards printed on aircraft aluminum.

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Funding period

- (31 days)