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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


Tom Stephens's picture

Issue 24 Now Available

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Hello Explorers!

Welcome to issue 24 of the Frontier Explorer.  Now that Spacefleet has cleared out the recent sathar incursion, we can start publishing again.

This issue picks up right where we left off including some articles that were ready to go but didn’t make it into issue 23.  All of the usual articles (Jurak Hangna, comics, etc) are here along with articles about derlict spaceships, and some not so derelict ones along with an small mini adventure in our Warriors of White Light 2 series.

The biggest change is that we’ve moved to a new layout and design for the magazine’s cover, logo, and interior.  Let us know what you think about the changes and any suggestions or ideas you might have to make it even better.

This issue continues and strengthens our support for the FrontierSpace RPG in addition to Star Frontiers. Issue 23 had a conversion of the Star Frontier races to FrontierSpace. This issue contains the details of a star system from the FrontierSpace frontier sector as well as stats in the Jurak Hangna creature article for use in that system.

The full article list for this issue is:

  • Frontier News
  • Dark Shadow's Revenge
  • Duergan's Star System
  • Of Lost Ships and Derelicts
  • Exploring a Deserted Spaceship
  • Meet the Crew of the SS Knight Owl
  • Titan Rising: 2299 #17
  • Kdikit Blue Biters
  • Ghostship of the Terran Queen
  • Escape Run #3

Grab your copy today and as always, keep exploring!

(or get it from DriveThruRPG)

Tom Stephens's picture

We're Back!

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The TL;DR. version is that the Frontier Explorer will resume publication in April, one year after the next issue was supposed to come out.  For the long version, read on.

It's been almost a year since WotC contacted me and asked me to suspend work on the fan magazines and remove the remastered products and reprinted Dragon magazine articles.  Since that was all completed in March 2018, there has been radio silence from WotC as they have been busy dealing with other fires and Star Frontiers has been low on their priority list.  That radio silence ended in January.

At that point I informed them of my intention to start the magazine back up and laid out my plans to do so.  I asked them to let me know if there were any issues with my plan and since I haven't heard back from them, I'm considering us good to go.  It's possible they will change their minds but I don't actually see any problems going forward.

So the remaining questions are: "What is going to happen?" and "What can I do to help?"  Here is what I'm planning on doing and ways you can help out if you are interested.

What's going to happen?

First, I've reopened the submission queue.  Our big, gold "Submit New Content" button is back.  The magazine lives and dies on submissions.  If you want to help with the magazine, consider submitting articles, game reports, news items, art, or other material for publication.  I don't think we'll have a problem filling the next issue but we will always need content for future issues.  And as part of this relaunch I'm explicitly widening the scope of the magazine.  It will probably always be heavily slanted towards Star Frontiers.  That is the game near and dear to my and my cofounder (and primary contributor), Tom Verrealt's, heart.  But I want to get submissions from other game systems as well, espeically FrontierSpace.  If you have material that would apply to sci-fi games, regardless of system, consider sharing.

Next, I'll be relisting the magazine issues on DriveThruRPG (and so have restored the link to there in the sidebar as well).  I never deleted them, just made them private so that will be easy to restore and will probably be done by the end of the day.

Nex, I'm planning on updates to the magazine layout.  I don't know if it will happen for the next issue (#24) but I'd like to redesign the layout of the magazine.  I'm not sure how, or to what extent yet, but it's something I'll be looking at as we get the next issue put together.  

As we start things back up, I'm planning on some updates to the website. Right now the site is not mobile friendly and I'd like to fix that at the very least.  I also want to rework some of the pages such as those that display the images, maps, and individual download descriptions. That will be a work in progress over the coming months so you can expect to see changes as we go along. 

Finally, I'd like to get all of the back issues on-line.  Many of the early issues of the magazine are also available in HTML format here on the site.  I want to work on getting the rest of the issues up as well.  And make sure the new articles go up as well.  This is mainly just hours spent creating the pages.  Maybe with a bit of reorganization and reformatting as well. 

What can you do to help?

Production of the magazine takes a lot of work.  There is a reason it is only at most 45 pages of content published every 3 months.  We can always use some help.  If you want to help support the magazine, there are a number of ways you can do so.

First and foremost, download, read, and share each issue, and talk about it on social media.  Help us get the word out and build our readership numbers.  Knowing that people are enjoying our work and talking about it is always a boost to morale.

Second, submit content.  I can't stress this enough.  If we don't have content, we don't have a magazine.  Not everyone feels like they have something to share and that's fine.  But if you do, we'd like to get your ideas out to the community and we'll help you develop the article so it's ready to go.  And remember, anything sci-fi RPG related is fair game, regardless of system.  We do have to respect trademarks and copyrights and while I'm not a lawyer, I do have a degree in library science as have worked as a librarian and am very familiar with the rules and laws.

Closely related to content submission, is editing.  We can always use more help in reviewing and editing content before it's published.  The more people that look at an article, the more errors and misunderstandings are fixed.  Let us know if you want to join the editing staff.

If there are any of the other projects and updates mentioned in the previous section that you would like to be involved in, please let me know.  If you are a graphics designer and would be interested in working on that part of the project, let's talk and can see what we can come up with.  If you are a web developer and want to help with the site upgrade, the site is built on Drupal and I'd be glad for some help.  Or if you're just willing to cut, paste, and format the old articles in the the on-line format, there's plenty of work there as well.

Finally, you can always support the magazine financially.  Web hosting, software, and other tools that we use to create and maintain the magazine and its website are not free.  Having financial resources allows us to do more and do it better.  If you want to help support the magazine financially, there are a number of ways you can do so:

  • For single, one-time donations, just use the Donate button to the left.  That will take you to PayPal where you can make a donation of any amount that you feel comfortable with.
  • All of the issues of the magazine both new and old, are (or will be) listed on DriveThruRPG as "pay-what-you-want" products.  You are more than welcome to download them for free either here on the site or at DTRPG but if you want to give us a "tip" for a specific issue, you can do it that way.
  • Finally, if you want to support each issue on a recurring basis, consider supporting our Patreon campaign. If you become a patron of the magazine, in addition to providing us with support, you get early access to the finished magazine issues, articles as they are completed before publication, and can provide input on articles to publish depending on your support level.  At the highest support level you even get a physical printed copy of the magazine.

Also, anyone who supports the magazine get listed on the Site Supporter page here and certain levels of Patreon support get listed in each issue of the magazine.

So that's the plan at the moment. I'm sure things will evolve as we get into the process so stay tuned for more information in the future.

Tom Stephens's picture

A New Can Of Worms - Session 14

In this session, the PCs fight off the assault on the archeology site by a Galactic Task Force mercenary band and witness a startling display of power from over 50 km away.

Tom Stephens's picture

A New Can Of Worms - Session 13

In this session, the PCs decide to break off attempting to infiltrate the Dawn's Glow and catch their ride down to the planet's surface. They receive some more information on the contact they are following up and head out to the dig site where he last worked for Streel.  While there they make a discovery and learn that an attack is underway on the compound.

Tom Stephens's picture

A New Can Of Worms - Session 12

In this session, the PCs try to get onto the Dawn's Glow, or at least gather some incriminating evidence against the crew.  They also have a brush with the station authorities for suspicious behavior.

Tom Stephens's picture

A New Can Of Worms - Session 11

In this session, after avoiding a near run-in with the mercenary band, the PCs venture off Pale for the first time on their way to Laco.  When they arrive on the station, they find the ship that they suspect fired on the Streel shuttle that they rescued.

Tom Stephens's picture

Session 10 - A New Can of Worms

In this session, the PC engage the Sathodragon, make it the rest of the way to Tookerville, rummage through the PGC contact's house gaining some useful intel, split with the mercenary band, and race cross-country back to Point True.


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