Friday, 22 March 2019

Star Navy versus Fleet Commander - Compatible but Different

Fleet Commander vs. Star Navy

Although the two sets of rules are compatible, here’s a quick explanation of the difference between the two.  Star Navy gives you more control over each ship, while Fleet Commander places you at a higher level complete control of the fleet, not each ship.


Fleet Commander uses the same ships as those found in Star Navy, same Classes are used – 3 to 6. We used the stats for each ship in Star Navy to build the ships in Fleet Commander. Hulls sizes are reduced by half. How a ship causes damage to the enemy is not as important as the overall effect, so fighters, guns, torpedoes have been rolled together into one value in Fleet Commander called Firepower


In Star Navy you plot the movement of each ship, turns, and speed.
In Fleet Commander each side lays out their ships based on the location of its Flag Ship – in the center of the line.


In Star Navy you roll on a variety of tables to fire weapons, launch missiles or torpedoes, and launch Fighters; then use tables to evade missiles and torpedoes, try to shoot down fighters and missiles.
Fleet Commander tries to cause damage by rolling 2d6 versus the Rep of the ship with all the ways to cause damage rolled into one Firepower factor.
Pass 2d6 score a full nit, pass 1d6 and the target could escape damage and immediately return fire – something not found in Star Navy. Pass 0d6 and the target returns fire, immediately.


In Star Navy you need to find the location where the ship was hit and it takes damage on that location. The crew takes one of five different Reaction tests to see what they do.  It’s like you are the Captain of each ship.
In Fleet Commander the ship takes damage to the hull and the crew takes a Damage Control Test to see what they do. Ignore and act normally next turn, go to Damage Control and forfeit their next activation, or leave the fight.

Ending the Fight

In Star Navy each ship is checked to see if they leave the fight.
In Fleet Commander you track the number of ships lost in the fleet and when you reach excessive casualties and fail on the Will to Fight Table, the rest of the Fleet leaves at the same time.

In Conclusion

Want to command some ships with individual detail? That’s Star Navy. Want to command a fleet with many more ships, that’s Fleet Commander.
As they are compatible, you could play a small fight with 3 to 6 ships with Star Navy and a large battle with 10+ ships using Fleet Commander.

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  1. Really useful post - thanks Ed!

    Could you perhaps comment on how 5150 Fighter Command would mesh into the larger Fleet Commander system? thanks

  2. Probably not very well as Fighter Command is played at the individual fighter level, whereas in Fleet Commander they would be in the Firepower factor of the ship. Better with Star Navy, but best with Carrier Commander.

    1. Thanks Ed - and Carrier Commander (which I also have and really enjoy) with Fleet Commander?

    2. Kind of if you want more detail. However, the ship's in Carrier Command have been figures into Fleet Commander.