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Frontier Explorer - Issue 33 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

issue 33 of the Frontier Explorer is now available.

This issue begins with another blast from the past with an old web article by Andrew Campbell on the use of solar sails on ships in the Frontier.  Oscar Rios gives us a vrusk name generator as well as a system brief on the Solar Minor system.  We finish off the Radiation in the Frontier series by Joseph Cabadas and Jerry Boucher details the battlesuit.

Tom Verreault gives us a review of two RPG products which inspired him to create a new creature, the genetically engineered cat, adapted to life in zero gravity.  He also writes up a Psychic PSA, details some mysteries around the Frontier, and discovers some various water containers in the Minzii Marketplace.  We finish off the article with a ship for the Traveller game as a reskin of the opening section of Crash on Volturnus for Traveller.

Jurak Hangna is still on extended sabbatical for this issue.

The full article list is:

  • Solar Sails in Star Froniters
  • Vrusk Name Generator
  • First Contact Team RPG & Sci-fi Facility Generator Review
  • Genetically Engineered Cat
  • Radiation Hazards in the Frontier – Part 2
  • The Psychic PSA
  • Solar Minor System Brrief
  • Mysteries of the Frontier
  • The Battlesuit
  • Dying for a Drink
  • The Dawn Class Exploration/Transport
  • Escaping the SS Serena Dawn

Grab your copy, sit back, and enjoy. And as always, keep exploring!

Tom Stephens's picture

Frontier Explorer - Issue 32 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

Issue 32 of the Frontier Explorer is now available for download. We start off with a “Blast from the Past” and a play report of an old Star Frontiers game from decades ago.  The “Blast from the Past” series presents articles found on dead Star Frontiers websites or other places from before the magazine started and the early days of the game.  This issue has three such articles, the a-ready mentioned play report, a system for resolving investigation of alien technology (or any complex task, really), and an in-setting card game you can bring to your table.

We have two articles on aircars and new flying vehicles by Jerry Boucher and Oscar Rios. Oscar also gives us a look at the life of a typical, non-adventuring vrusk.

The big article this issue is the first of a two-part series that looks at using radiation effects in the game by Joe Cabadas.  The second half will be in issue 33.

Tom Verreault gives us a bevy of articles including reviews of a sci-fi map designer and Star Frontiers compatible miniatures, another character archetype, several bits of equipment, and finally, a detailed look at the published material on the Scree Fron system and its implications/extrapolations.

We round out the issue with our usual comics by Scott Mulder.  Unfortunately, due to some unexpected events, Jurak Hangna was unable to transmit an article for this issue, but we should expect one from him next time.  Which reminds me, I should check in with Alex Stone to see if he has any new adventures to report.

The full article list is:

  • Playing the Bad Guys
  • Frag Maps Review
  • Have Aircar, Will Travel …
  • Zoomers
  • The Vrusk Hustler
  • Radiation Hazards in the Frontier – part 1
  • Titan Rising: 2299  - episode 25
  • Alien Technology Flowcharts
  • An Industrious Life
  • IR Masking Skeinsuit and Military Toxyrad Gauge
  • The Expanded Medkit
  • Starbuckaroos
  • Soaring to New Heights on Hakosoar
  • Reaping New Star Frontiers Miniatures from Reaper
  • The Escape Plan #10

Grab your copy, sit back, and enjoy. And as always, keep exploring!

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Frontier Explorer - Issue 31 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

Welcome to issue 31 of the Frontier Explorer!  The latest issues is now available here on the website or on DriveThruRPG.  This issue introduces a new author, Michal Lausier, who provides us a Traveller short story, Bones and Mortar.  Oscar Rios provides us with ten standard sathar NPCs you can drop into your campaign.  We also have another needler article following the one last issue, this time, converted to the “Alternate Frontier” setting that Richard Farris is developing.

Tom Verreault gives us four articles, a new archetype, a look at the setting details to be gleaned from the Endless Quest book “Captive Planet,” a kit-bashed dralasite miniature, and new weapon.  Joseph Cabadas continues his Things that go Boom! series, this time looking at artillery, and also revisits the old Dragon article “Jetboots Don’t Fail Me Now” looking at an alternate movement system.

We round out the article with the Jurak Hangna article “Osaka Soul Plant” by Eric Winsor and the comics by Scott Mulder.

The full article list is:

  • Archetypes: The Dralasite Strong Being
  • Ten Standard Sathar
  • The Canon According to Captive Planet
  • Things That Go Boom! #9 – The King of Battle, Using Artillery in Star Frontiers
  • Frontier in Miniature: Conversion & Review of Bad Squiddo Games’ Baggy Character
  • Titan Rising: 2299  - episode 24
  • Osaka Soul Plant
  • Gauss Weapons – “Needlers”
  • In the Minzii Marketplace: The Shotgun Holdout Pistol
  • Jetboots Redux: An Alternate Movement System for Star Frontiers
  • Bones and Mortar (fiction)
  • The Escape Plan #9

Grab your copy, sit back, and enjoy. And as always, keep exploring!

 

 

 

 

Tom Stephens's picture

Saddle-stitched printing going away

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Just wanted to give everyone a heads up.

I learned last night that Lightning Source, the company DriveThruRPG uses to do its print on demand printing, is discontinuing their offering of saddle stitch binding begining March 1, 2021.  They have decided that it is not economically viable for them to continue to provide this option.  This is the binding format we've been using for the Frontier Explorer since we started that gives us the old-school staples in the middle look and allows us to occasionally put pages in the middle you can pull out of the printed magazine.

So what does this mean?

First, if you just get the magazine digitally, there will be zero impact.

Second, going forward, all print versions of new issues of the Frontier Explorer will be perfect bound (like a paperback novel/hardback book).  That's the only option we will have.  Starting with issue 31 (coming out next week) we will be building the magazine for that format.  The truth is we haven't taken advantage of the saddle stitched binding for several years; we very rarely have anything that requires a two page spread.  So while this will impact my production of each issue slightly, it won't really affect your use of the printed version if you get them other than it might be a bit harder to get them to lay flat.  For those few back issues that did have a center spread, it will unfortuantely no longer be usable as we had originally intended.

Third, I'm going to try to get the print files updated for all of the back issues to the new format.  The existing files won't work.  If you try to order them, Lightning Source will supposedly reject the order.  It's not clear yet exactly how that will work.  And to be fair, it's actually just the cover files that I need to update, the interior files are fine.  Luckily, the issues are almost all the same size so it should be a fairly straightforward process (and fairly quick) to make the new files.  The trick will be if DTRPG makes me buy new print proofs for every back issue.  With 30 back issues plus the two technical manuals, that will cost a small chunk of change (~$200-250) and take some time.  I'm going to try to get this all done before March 1st, but if I don't, some back issues of the magazine will not be available with a POD option for a while.

Fourth, I may revisit the magazine size.  We have always kept it at 48 pages maximum since going any large pushed us out of saddle-stitched and into perfect bound.  Since we are going there anyway, we no longer have that size limit.  I don't think I'll raise the page count, as that means more editing work for each issue, but it also means that I don't have quite the hard cap and if I go a bit over, it's not the end of the world.  We'll see where this takes us over the course of the coming issues.

The bottom line is that if you want print copies in the saddle-stitched binding, you have until Feb 28th to get your order in.  And I'd recommend getting it in a bit earilier than that as I don't know how they will handle the transition.  I assume they'll accept orders up to that date and fulfill them into March (it takes up to 2 weeks after you place the order for it to get printed and ship), but who knows. In any case, the winds of change are blowing and there isn't anything we can do about it, we just need to roll with it and move forward.

Tom Stephens's picture

Frontier Explorer - Issue 30 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

Welcome to issue 30 of the Frontier Explorer!  You can get it here on the website or over at DriveThruRPG. This issue introduces two new authors RJ McDonough and Oscar Rios.  RJ talks about the “Art of the Crossover” and bringing outside resources into your game while Oscar gives us a couple of new equipment articles, one on needler weapons and a second on restraints.

This issue brings back our “Frontier in Miniature” series looking at miniatures for use in your game.  This time, Tom Verreault kit-bashes some computers and transmitter arrays as terrain pieces.  We already have a couple more miniature articles in the queue so you can expect to see more of these in the future.  We are also continuing the “An Alternate Frontier” series by Richard Farris with a look at gyrojet weapons.

I thought we would be wrapping up the “Things That Go Boom!” series by Joseph Cabadas in this issue but while I was doing the editing,  he submitted another that you can look for in the next issue.

Rounding out the issue we have a pair of spaceship articles by Richard “Shadow Shack” Rose, a short adventure, some new species, and a look at food trucks in the Frontier by Tom Verreault, and a look at handling random creature encounters and an article on protective gear by Joseph Cabadas.  Finally, we have our regular Jurak Hangna article by Eric Winsor and the comics by Scott Mulder.

The full article list is:

  • Scouting Yacht
  • Surplus Assault Scout Hull
  • A Death in Port
  • To Boldy Expand the Frontier
  • The Art of The Crossover
  • Handling Random Creature
  • Encounters
  • Emitter Arrays & Comm Dishes
  • Anakalypto
  • Titan Rising: 2299 #23
  • Disarming Things That Go Boom!
  • Gyrojet Weapons – “Hissers”
  • Pimp My Needler
  • New Protective Equipment
  • Personal Restraints
  • Food Trucks in The Frontier
  • Escape Run Comic #8

Grab your copy, sit back, and enjoy. And as always, keep exploring!

 

Tom Stephens's picture

Issue 29 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

Welcome to issue 29 of the Frontier Explorer. You can grab it here on the

website or at DriveThruRPG. We kick off the issue with a new ship by a new author, Shawn Starky, detailing a small hull size 4 freighter. We are also introducing a new series, “An Alternate Frontier,” by another new author, Richard “GreyMyst” Farris. The first article, Electrochemical Slugthrowers, looks basic projectile weap-ons and provides a variety of new models.  Future articles will look at other weapons and develop his version of an alternate Frontier.

We again have two more installments of the “Things that go Boom!” series, which should wrap up with a final article next issue.  This time we’re looking at dropped ordinance – bombs.

We round out the issue with our usual comics, another article from Jurak Hangna, a look at the Battle of Zebulon, a book review, and a new bit of equipment from the Minzi Marketplace.

 The full article list is:

  • Pah’Thas – Hull Size 4 Freighter
  • Things that go Boom 7 – Looking at Dropped Weapons
  • Knight Hawk Scenarios: Battle of Zebulon
  • Percival's Legacy!
  • Titian Rising: 2299
  • In the Minzii Marketplace: Inertia Umbrella
  • Electrochemical Slugthrowers – Sluggers
  • Book Review: Ultimate RPG Character Backstory Guide
  • Things that go Boom 8 – More Bombs, Targeting, and Aerial Drop Systems

Grab your copy, sit back, and enjoy. And as always, keep exploring!

Tom Stephens's picture

Issue 28 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

Issue 28 of the Frontier Explorer is now available. You can grab it here on the magazine website or at DriveThruRPG. In this issue we have a grab back of articles including more installments of the Things That Go Boom! series, this time on landmines, a new, optional ruleset for combat and actions, a look back at an old Star Frontiers Choose Your Own Adventure book, and a review of a White Star module.

A fun item is this issue is our Create a Character Codex by Aaron O’Brian. This table lets you roll a few dice and get a quick random character concept. Aaron and Brian Phongluangtham went to town drawing a bunch of characters generated from the codex when Aaron first posted. Several of their images are featured with the codex in this issue.

We round out the issue with a look at whips, our regular Jurak Hangna article, and our comics. The full article list is:

  • New Combat Rules and Action Economy
  • Things That Go Boom! 5: Don’t Step on Landmines
  • Evaluating Villains of Volturnus for Canonicity
  • Create a Character Codex
  • Titan Rising: 2299 – Episode 21
  • Peril at the Pod Auction
  • Two Seconds With a Slurker
  • Things That Go Boom! 6: More on Landmines
  • Whip it Good!
  • Escape Plan #6

Grab your copy, sit back, and enjoy. And as always, keep exploring!

 

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Issue 27 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

Welcome to issue 27 of the Frontier Explorer.  You can grab it here on the website or from DriveThruRPG. Our new author in this issue is Jerry Boucher, who also drew the absolutely amazing cover image for the issue.  The cover is a callback, albeit from the sathar side, of the classic Elmore painting that graces the cover of the original rules.  His article looks at the construction and use of the sathar weapons.

In addition to Jerry’s article, we have the continuation of the Thing’s That Go Boom series with a look at the demolitions skill and the various explosives available in the Frontier.  We also continue our support for Traveller with an adventure for that game system that has its roots in a sample adventure in the Star Frontiers rules.

We round out the issue with a visit by Jurak Hangna to Lossend for a safari, information on remote weapons systems, some vruskian melee weapons, a look at Spacefleet’s organization, paper minis for the core four PC races, and our usual comics.

The full article list is:

  • Reorganizing Space Fleet
  • Sathar Weapons
  • Things that go Boom Part 3: Expanding the Demolitions Skill
  • Jurak’s Timeon Safari Grazelle Hunt
  • The Hepplewhite Disaster
  • Titian Rising: 2299 #20
  • How Does It Work?  Remote Weapon Systems
  • Brass Balls for a Vrusk
  • Things that go Boom! Part 4: More Explosives in the Frontier
  • Player Character Color Minis
  • Escape Run #5

Grab your copy, sit back, and enjoy.  And as always, keep exploring!

 

Tom Stephens's picture

Issue 26 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

Issue 26 of the Frontier Explorer is now available.  You can grab it here on the website for from DriveThruRPG.  This is a more typical grab-bag issue with no particular theme, although it definitely leans heavily to the weapons and equipment direction.  We have articles by two new authors this issue: Nick Landry and John Blaylock, with articles on portable power sources and energy weapons, respectively.  I think we can expect to see more articles from them in the future.

We are also starting a run of articles, under the heading of “Things that go Boom!”, by Joseph Cabadas.  This issue contains the first two articles, about grenades and missiles.  This series will run with a couple of articles in each issue for the next year or so.  I believe there are currently eight articles total in the publication queue and he’s working on a ninth.  So you can expect a lot of explosions in the future.

Another first for this issue is articles for the Traveller game system.  Richard “Shadow Shack” Rose has picked up the game again recently and takes us on a trip down memory lane from when he was a player in the 80’s and also provides an introductory article on the various career options during character generation in that game system for those of us who have never played the game.

We round out the issue with a couple of “How does it work?” articles on Yazirian gliding (that got bumped from last issue due to space constraints) and exoskeletons, a fluff article detailing a phonetic alphabet for the Frontier, our usual Jurak Hangna article, and deck plans for a pirate frigate.

The full article list is:

  • They Call Dralasites Delta Bravos
  • How Does it Work? Yazirian Gliding
  • Introduction to Traveller: Character Service Branches
  • The Volturnian Bowler
  • Introduction to Traveller: Chargen!
  • Things That Go Boom! Grenades
  • Portable Power in The Frontier
  • Titan Rising: 2299 #19
  • Rafflurs and KE Lasers in Alpha Dawn
  • Things That Go Boom! Part2: Looking at Missiles and Rockets
  • How Does it Work? Exoskeletons
  • Black Condor Class Pirate Frigate
  • Grymz Guide Intermission comic

Grab your copy, sit back, and enjoy.  And as always, keep exploring!

Tom Stephens's picture

Issue 25 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

And welcome to issue 25 of the Frontier Explorer – The Summer of Sathar.  When we put out the call for articles in issue 24, we had so many sathar submissions that we decided to do another issue dedicated to the arch enemy in the Star Frontiers setting.  This issue contains articles covering topics such as sathar biology, vehicles, robots, weapons, creatures, and social structure.  We also have our regular comics and Jurak Hangna creature article.

Our cover image is by Brian Phongluangtham, who also did a bunch of images for the interior of the magazine as well.  The idea for that image came out of a discussion on our Discord server and he did an amazing job.

This issue’s full article list is:

  • Book Review: Polaris Rising
  • More on Satharoid Biology
  • The Fiendish Plot of Sathar Clan X
  • Examining Sathar Robots
  • Sathar Ships in the Frontier
  • Looking at Sathar Vehicles
  • Stalked by Death
  • Variant Quickdeaths
  • Titan Rising: 2299 #18
  • The Sculgo
  • Its Name is Sathar!
  • Whiteheaded Treebouncer
  • Sathar Swarm Tactics
  • Escape Plan #4

Grab your copy (either here on the site or on DriveThruRPG), sit back, and enjoy.  And as always, keep exploring!

- Tom Stephens

 

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