What is Squadron Strike?
Squadron Strike is one of the games that I publish; it’s a 3-D space combat board game where players get to design ships and set them at each other. I publish a lot of settings for it, and Axanar will be one of them.
In terms of turn structure, Squadron Strike shares the “plot-move-shoot-repair” sequence that you’ve seen in Ground Zero Games Full Thrust, Fantasy Flight Games’s X-Wing and WizKids Star Trek Attack Wing.
You plot your maneuvers by selecting options on a laminated card, then adjust your End of Turn tent. That’s the Plotting Phase.
On the Movement Phase, everyone moves to their End of Turn tent, adjusts their speed for next turn, places their End of Turn tent for their adjusted speed, and then combat happens.
In the Combat Phase, each attack is handled with a roll of four d10s, which determine if you hit and how hard, and where on the enemy ship the damage goes. Once you’ve done it a few times (both as the shooter and the target), it goes fast.
After combat comes the Crew Actions Phase, the phase where the damage control crews try to fix something on the ship and where, if you’ve got the power, you can start the slow process of repairing shields.
Once Crew Actions is over, it’s back to Plotting for turn two.
So, that’s all very simple. The complexity is maneuvering in 3D. We combine pitch and yaw into one maneuver called Pivoting, and your ship can roll on the axis of its nose and aft. In general, you pivot to bring weapons to bear and roll to try to get return fire onto a different facing of the ship. There’s a play aid for managing all of this called the AVID (Attitude Vector Information Display), and there’s a learning curve in using that. Once you’ve grasped the AVID, the rest of the game is pretty easy!
And now there’s an app for that. The AVID Assistant is free, and is on Google Play for Android and the iTunes store for iOS. The AVID Assistant walks you through the entire Sequence of Play, with all the steps in front of you, and completely replaces the laminated AVID cards that come in the box — it also does the record keeping of tracking orientation changes, and will provide bearings (the ‘can I shoot them’ sight-lines) between your ships and all other ships in the game.
Even better, we’re working on a virtual map for all of my space combat titles, and we’ve been testing it with Axanar, as you can see in the video below:
This is a video, shot in Giga-Bytes Cafe in June with Axanar ships. I’m getting my butt handed to me by Eric Neilson. Check next week’s blog for why I’m losing!
— Ken Burnside, Designer, Squadron Strike and Squadron Strike: Axanar