Help out a Newbie to B5 ACTA


I have just ordered the Starter set - B5 ACTA - (the boxed set with the main rulebook and counters).

I am a long time gamer and have Battlefleet Gothic but thought I would give B5 ACTA a Red Hot Go!

I should get the box in a week. I was looking at starting with the EA but will play a few games with the counters first.

Is the game hard to learn :?: - I normally play 40k, WH Fantasy and Flames of War.

The reason I ask is I looked at some of the Player Resources and am freaking out a little.

How long does playing a game take?

Does anyone play B5 ACTA in Toowoomba Australia?

Happy Gaming!
dead easy to learn.

games can take as long as you like depending on ths size, from geenrally an hour upwards for decent sized games.

and havent a clue to ur last question.

if you decide to go earth alliance tho i owuld suggest getting the new armageddon book when it comes out as the EA fleet is split into 3 eras.
The game is not hard to learn at all, player resources are mostly things like ship data sheets that some of the residents of these boards have put together to aid play.

A game can take a while depending on the size and if you are playing scenario's in one-off or campaighn play, ours are normally 1.5 -2.5hrs but we've bin playing a lot of 5 point raid games (tourney standard)

Im sure I have seen some Aussie posters on the Player location list.

Anyways hope that helps these forums are ace for getting queries cleared, tactics, fleet suggestions, etc etc :lol:

Welcome to the game, have fun :lol:
Thanks Guys. It is alot of money for me to outlay especially when I am going to start buying minatures as well.

I have a mate who I know will give it a go. I'm not so worried now thanks!
Strongly recommend having a few games with the counters with plenty of different combinations of ships

(but not 10 saggitarius missile cruisers or we may hunt you down with pointy sticks :roll: )

The counters are accepted by anything up to and including mongoose tournaments, so it's a good way to figure out a fleet list BEFORE buying've paid for them anyway, so you might as well.....

Have a look at the sticky on the top of the forum index called Player Resources; this has got print-off ship record sheets with damage tracks and critical charts on the page with the ship stats - saves you having to go back and forth in the rules.

Broadly speaking it plays very much like BFG - no blast markers and gunnery tables, but less simplified fighters and more ship classes.

The only big change is that you alternate acting with ships, rather than the
I-take-a-turn-you-take-a-turn of BFG.

Plus you get the shadow fleet. Which is shiny at a deeply fundamental level. (Midnight black never goes out of style.....)
the pre-generated sheets that people have put together look a little intimidating, but that's just because of the extra information put there so people don't have to look it up (the critical damage charts on Chernoybl's sheets for example). the game itself is very simple to learn, the rule book is only about 30 pages, and a big chunk of that is the campaign rules.
Is the game hard to learn? Not at all. It is pretty similar to BFG. The main differences is that there are more traits for the ships and weapons kicking around. And no shields or blast markers to worry about. As other have said The games take as long as you wan to play for. Patrols can be over in an hour, Wars over three hours. I tend to play a 5 point skirmish/3 point raid when teaching people. You can cover the basics pretty quickly and get a good feel for the game.

The player resoucres will make a lot more sense to you when you realise what they do, as other people have said they condense a lot of information together. There is probably enough information in them to play the game with, without needing the rules!

As to the location, one of the sticky threads is a player locater, there are some Australians on there from the Capital Territory I think.
Also if you like the game and are finding it difficult gettin local opponents try Vassal ACTA, an online version of the game designed by the Legendary Ranger Geekybiker. :lol:
Thanks again guys. 30 pages of rules sounds better. No blast markers like in BFG also sounds better.

I have a mate who was a big B5 fan and watched the series where as I only saw a few shows. I think I can convince hime to get in a game or three. Hopefully we can get a few other gamers involved from there.

I'm also glad to know a game doesn't take longer then 3 hours (when you know the rules).

Thanks again Guys! :D
I actually miss the shield mechanics from BFG, but that's just me. ACtA is the better game system in all fairness. No harder to learn but a bit more detailed. Everybody wins.
fluffy05 said:
Thanks again guys. 30 pages of rules sounds better. No blast markers like in BFG also sounds better.

Those 30 pages include lots of large pictures too, and the Advanced Rules, how to set up and use stellar scenery. There is actually only about 11 pages of rules, including 1 page of critical hit tables to read.

fluffy05 said:
I'm also glad to know a game doesn't take longer then 3 hours (when you know the rules).

It is also dependant on how much you talk, and argue and pray to your dice. Just like any other wargame really. One of the better features of the game is the PL system, so you can put a large fleet together in minutes.
Okay. Now I'm counting the days till I get the boxed set. Then I just need to buy 10 EA Sags (Just kidding :wink: )

I can't wait to get stuck in!

I might start making Terrain ready for game play.

Can anyone tell me what the average sizes are for terrain? For Planets Asteroids etc?
Cap'n Peg-Leg Tank said:
if you have the rule book planet diameters are stated as are asteriod field sizes

I will be getting the rule book in 6 days. I was just hoping for a heads up.

I will look it up when I get it.
Planets fall into the following categories (Wulf's counters may be available for dowload/print in the player resources section or Greasy's B5page (link to) of the forum):
Moon up to 3" Diameter
Planet 3" to 9" Diameter (may have moons)
Gas Giant over 10" Diameter (may have moons)

Asteroid fields are based on density as indicated above. Basically for a single field, you need asteroids to represent a field 1ft^2. If you roll well (or badly depending) an entire battlefield can be filled with asteroids. (I just use the Rocketmen asteroid counters from the game by Wizzkids)
fluffy05 said:
Can anyone tell me what the average sizes are for terrain? For Planets Asteroids etc?
Planets are from 1" to 12" plus in diameter, Asteroid fields commonly 6" square. You get one per roll of a 6 per 1'x1' ara of the table, so commonly 3-6 bits. Many scenario types don't use any at all.

Thanks for all those with helpful advice. I realy appreciate the friendly help I have received on this Forum.

OK so last night I made 2 small moons. I cut a ping pong ball in half filled each half with putty to add weight and placed plasticard ofer each half to create 2 semispheres.

I then painted each half roughly with PVA glue to give it a little more texture.

I am using 2 semi spheres to help with line of sight to make it more clear cut. I will post pictures soon. (I have to do something untill I get the game and my first models :D )
This lot are my versions:

be sure to print with no scaling or they don't print circular!. Unfortunately, the A4 paper width means that nothing over 7" really prints properly, but they look good overall.

I made a better PDF with asteroids and all, but something screwed up and they all print ovoid...

Thanks Wulf - Downloaded already!

I've decided to get some EA minis and am checking with my LGS as to what is available from his supplier.

Most players seem to be playing a 5 point Raid fleet (if I read the forums correctly)

I really liked the Warlock but it sure chews up the points at Raid level.

I was thinking of running with 2 Novas and maybe 2 Sag's (I want to get the minis anyway)
Fluffy, sorry I'm late to the conversation (comcast has just gotten me back online from this weekend) but did you order the "starter set" or the "revised edition" box set? The reason I ask is there's a big difference is content.
I also have a nice selection of terrain you can download and print on my website...go to my multimedia page at