The Babylon Project
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Babylon 5 Wars (B5W) is a science fiction tabletop miniature wargame, produced by the gaming company Agents of Gaming. In 1999, it was nominated for the Origins Award for Best Science Fiction or Fantasy Miniatures Rules.[1] The miniature produced of the Babylon 5 station won the award for "Best Vehicle Miniature of 1999" of the same year.[2]

History[]

The first edition of the game was published in 1997. The two men responsible were Bruce Graw and Robert Glass and based out of Dayton, Ohio. The original rules were complex and the ship selection was minimal. The second edition was produced less than one year later. In it were several key rules revisions and clarifications. Over the lifespan of the game many supplements were released. With the supplements many new races and ships came about.

Other AOG employees included Kelly Lofgren, Tim Miller Jr (who acted as a field rep), Stephen Turner (that worked on logistics), and Leo Dunin (that did graphic design work on the books). The company lost its license with Warner Bros in 2000 to Mongoose Publishing that presented a different spin on the game, "A Call to Arms"/ ACTA, and used many of the B5W pieces, and other games. Robert Glass was key to the continuation and Bruce Graw continued to write books for Mongoose. AOG's remaining inventory was sold off to a single person (known as Agent One, a pseudonym for Graw) and "new old stock" is still sold minus the packaging but in small ziplock bags instead. Graw eventually purchased the Mongoose inventory when it lost its license as well and sells those items on his online store. Graw also sells GROPOS items, a game based on land wars within the B5 realm. Some items have sold out from Graw, especially books.

Babylon 5 Wars has spun off other games as well. Besides ACTA, it spurred Fiery Void, an online free-to-play game developed by fans and not licensed by AOG, Mongoose, or Warner Bros. It has some variances to the B5W rules but uses the original rules as the basis for play. That team has also merged in ships and technology from other sci-fi programs including Star Wars, Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, and more. As an online game players worldwide can be an opponent and the game may take place in real time with everyone participating currently, or it can take days as a player performs their role then the game waits for the other player(s) to complete their turn(s).

Gameplay[]

Overview[]

Each player assembles a fleet, represented by counters or miniatures, which equal to a set point limit. A player is generally limited to a single race to choose their ships. There is also a limit to ship usage based on fighter space, rarity, and year.

The game is broken down into turns. Each player interacts in a turn at the same time. A die roll with certain bonuses determines movement order. Actions such as drift, power usage, electronic warfare, thrust, and fighter operations must be done every turn. A turn can be very long and complex. Some turns can take up to hours depending on fleet sizes.

Supplied by supplements and rules expansions historic scenarios can also be played out. In a scenario, specific fleet composition is spelled out for each player along with map geography and objectives.

Collecting[]

Compared to other games in the tabletop miniature wargame genre the cost of a fighting force is relatively cheap. The majority of the ships published had associated minis made for them. A chronic problem with Agents of Gaming though was finding a reliable sculptor. Sometimes throughout the life of the game no miniatures would be released for months at a time.

Besides Agent One, the only current source for B5W miniatures is online auction houses and discount bins at local gaming stores. Mongoose Publishing produced some of the line of miniatures when they took over, in many cases, exactly the same molds that Agents of Gaming used to produce them.

Modeling[]

A strong point of the game was its models. The ships were made with a high degree of quality. All ship models were released in pewter. Some ships were very large, taking up several base stands on the playing map.

Armies/Races/Species[]

This is a list of playable races (including one-off "Ship of the Month"s). This is for the most part complete, but is in the process of being revised.

Please also note that there are a large number of races, both canon and non-canon, that have been made and developed unofficially. These include the canon Drakh and Lumati, possible takes on an independent Mars, and many more. Conversions have also been made to bring fleets from other universes into the game, including the TV shows Star Trek and BattleStar Galactica, as well as computer games such as FreeSpace and Star Control. See the external links below for more details.

References[]

External links[]

  • Babylon 5 Wars: official game site.
  • B5Wars.net: Formerly hosted by Agents of Gaming, this is a heavily trafficked forums site for the B5Wars game system.
  • Planetside: Home of the 'BabCom' and 'The Great Machine' webzines, which include a vast amount of new races, ships, and crossovers from other TV shows and games, by Tyrel Lohr.
  • Rich Bax's Site: A collection of very in-depth additions to the game, from one of the game supplements' leading developers, Rich Bax.
  • B5Wars Vault: A collection of all currently available fan-made ships and background information. Compiled by Kevin Muñoz.
  • Agent One: The only place to buy new-old stock of AOG or Mongoose items, while supplies last.
  • Fiery Void: The interactive web-game.
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