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Hundreds Of Dollars Worth Of Product. . . In A Shoebox

August 20, 2018

This is the third post in a three part series about Star Trek Attack Wing. Read an intro to it here. Or the first two posts:

Too Many Ships? I Don’t Understand The Question
Seriously Disrespecting These Ship

Star Trek Attack Wing requires a lot of pieces. There are Shields, Aux Tokens, Cloke Tokens, Evade Tokens, Battle Stations, Target Locks, Disabled Tokens, Time Tokens, Gold Pressed Latinum Tokens, Mission Tokens, Minefields, and a whole bunch of speciality tokens.

Many people buy fishing tackle boxes, or those bins that hold collections of screws or beads to keep their Tokens organized.

Not me.

I use a shoebox.

It’s a nice shoebox, as shoeboxes go. It has a hinged lid, and it’s large enough to hold the essentials I need to play and small enough to not take over the playing table. It didn’t come with the helpful Star Trek Attack Wing label. I added that. But, you probably figured that out already.

It is definitely the odd man out when it comes to the preferred packing method for Attack Wing.

I pack a lot into my shoebox.

There’s enough dice for two separate games. My own set of damage cards. A bag of Battle Station, Evade, Cloak, Time and Target Lock Tokens. Another bag with Disabled Tokens. The bag of Shield Tokens, of course. The Gold Pressed Latinum Tokens. (I’m a big fan of playing the Ferengi.) I have two sets of movement acrylic templates. And the captain tokens.

As I mentioned in the first post in this series, I have hundreds of ships. And that means I have hundreds of captain tokens, many of them duplicates. So, to make it simple, I actually only keep a single Captain Token for each new captain. I sort them by Captain Skill. When I equip my ships, I place the captain token on the front so my opponent knows which captains are on my ships, and then I put the blue Target Lock token on the back of my ship so that I can easily keep track of which Target Lock Token goes with each ship.

The last thing in my useful shoebox is a tape measure. It’s convenient for setting up scenarios that require placing tokens a certain distance from the edges of the playing area. But, what we find it most useful for is as our Initiative marker. Sure, you can use those little paper disks that come with the game, but they tend to get lost in the pile o’Tokens that collect in front of you. But, a tape measure is never going to get lost in the mix.

In addition to the pieces needed to play the game, I also include all the Tokens and Ships and Ship Bases that are needed for each of my fleets in the shoe box.

Once I’ve built my fleet, I collect all the pieces necessary and together with the ships, I throw then into a bag. Then, when it’s time to play, I pull out that single bag and can immediately set up.

In the image above, we see the Tholian fleet on the left that is about to do battle with a Species 8472 fleet on the right. (The Tholians didn’t stand a chance.)

These bags combined with my “white binder” of the cards assigned to my fleet, mean that setup is as simple as pulling out a bag and pulling the sheets from the white binder.

It makes Setup much quicker.

And of course, everything uses the “plastic bag” method of storage. I am more interested in playing the game than in collecting the pieces. If it seems I’m rough on my game pieces, you’re probably right.

However, the best part of meeting a new player is to watch his reaction as I start pulling out baggies like a 3rd grader opening his lunch.

This method is not for everyone, but it works for me.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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