Star Fleet Battles (SFB) is a space combat simulation based on Star Trek:The Original Series. It was designed by the Amarillo Design Bureau (ADB) and published by Task Force Games. ADB had to secure rights from Paramount and Lou Zocchi in order to publish the game. The agreement with Paramount only allows ADB to use material from ST:TOS and not ST:TNG. Lou Zocchi was a great help in getting the early game developed and actually bought the first 500 copies of the game before they were published in order to give ADB some working capital. Steven V. Cole is the primary designer of SFB.
The game is played on a hexmap with ships represented by cardboard counters about .5"x.5". There are miniatures available, but they require a larger hexmap and much more playing space. For record keeping purposes, the ships are represented by Ships System Displays, or SSDs. The SSDs have a graphical representation of the ship. The ship's systems are displayed as checkboxes which are used to record damage to the ship. The ship's energy use is tracked on an Energy Allocation (EA) form. Typically, one would place the SSD and the EA form back to back in a clear report cover and use a grease pencil to record the playing of the game so that the SSD and EA forms could be reused. For further game play details, please see The Game Mechanics of Star Fleet Battles.
The races in SFB are:
SFB has gone through three revisions of the rules, Original, Commander's, and Doomsday.
The Original rules were rather messy, and tended to contradict themselves in many places. They were published as Star Fleet Battles, Expansion I, and Expansion II. The books were about 5"x8", and plastic shrink wrapped with set of counters and SSDs.
The Commander's rules where cleaned up a bit, and tended to contradict themselves in only a few places. They were published as Star Fleet Battles: Volume I, Star Fleet Battles: Volume II, Star Fleet Battles: Volume III. They were all boxed sets with sets of counters and SSDs.
The Doomsday rules were the final incarnation of the SFB ruleset, and were a general cleanup of the Commander's ruleset. They were published as a boxed set, and many expansion packs were added.
The computer game Star Fleet Command published by Interplay was based on SFB.