Five Parsecs From Home articles

Five Parsecs From Home is a solitaire miniatures game from Nordic Weasel. The game is a lot like the TV shows Firefly or The Expanse, following the adventures of a small spaceship and their crew.

A lot of minis games are all about the Mission or Battle, with just a tiny bit of campaign-filler to link them. Five Parsecs takes the opposite approach. The battles are fast and short, and the campaign material bridging between them is involved and exciting. I really dig it.


2021 Battle Reports

Playing 5 Parsecs on Roll20
(I'm playing 5 Parsecs on Roll20)
Though I do own a lot of sci-fi minis, and a bit of terrain, I do most of my Five Parsecs gaming virtually at the moment. I use Roll20 for the virtual tabletop, which allows me to get double-duty out of maps I'd already be using for my other RPGs. I figure, as a GM you spend so much time putting together interesting battle situations, for encounters the PCs might avoid entirely or smash through with a few lucky rolls. With 5 Parsecs, I can transfer those maps between campaigns, drop a couple of high-tech doodads on top to make them feel more sci-fi, and get a little more value out of the time and effort already invested for other campaigns. 

Here are links to the logs and battle reports of the 2021 campaign, for Captain Inshubur and the crew of the spaceship known as The Rhapsody of Inanna.

  • Crew Roster 
  • (Each Campaign Turn has battle diagram)
    Landing Page / Console (the interface where I track Crew Actions during the Campaign Turns)
  • Campaign Turn 1 - Patron Mission vs Skulker Mercenaries. + Character Spotlight: Captain Inshubur
  • Campaign Turn 2 - Quest Mission vs Colonial Militia
  • Campaign Turn 3 - Patron Mission vs Large Bugs. + Character Spotlight: Marshal Juniper Saspirillax
  • Campaign Turn 4 - Patron Mission vs Black Ops Team
  • Campaign Turn 5 -  Quest Mission vs K'Erin Outlaws and a Precursor Wanderer
  • 3 Planets and 1 House Rule - Planets, Patrons, Rivals, and a House Rule
  • Campaign Turn 6 -  Story Track Mission #1 vs Corp Hired Guns
  • Campaign Turn 7 - The finale of my first Quest, in a Toxic Environment, against a whole lot of K'Erin.
  • Campaign Turn 8 - Patron Mission vs Distorts
  • Campaign Turn 9 - Rival Battle vs Cultists
  • Campaign Turn 10 - Story Track Mission #2 vs Blood Storm Mercs
  • Campaign Turn 11 - in-depth Planetary Travel to a new sector, followed a short Patron Mission against Black Dragon Mercs
  • Campaign Turn 12 - Patron Mission vs War Bots and their pet Dog. Honest.
  • Campaign Turn 13 - Story Track Mission #3 vs Goons with Pistols fighting in the fog.
  • Campaign Turn 14 - Ambushed by a Rival Salvage Crew. First mission with new Enemy Deployment Variables and Escalating Battles rules from the new Trailblazer's Toolkit expansion.
  • ...and more to come


Other Five Parsecs Articles

  • 6 Games I'm Loving Right Now - Short reviews of a number of different games that I've been enjoying in 2021.  Five Parsecs made the list.
  • Stars of the Story cards -  In the default rules these are just a list or maybe some note cards. I made them a little prettier for my virtual tabletop.
  • 3 Planets and 1 House Rule. Technically part of the battle reports and campaign logs above, but it also includes a House Rule that I've been using to cap the number of Patrons on any given planet. The goal is to make the existing Patrons come up more often instead of the default revolving door of new Patrons that rarely get revisited.
  • 1,000 Quest Names - A chart for rolling up the name of the thing you are questing for. 
  • Crew Tasks: What's My Motivation - Brainstorming up an alternate version of the Crew Tasks system, where the tasks any given PC can undertake are determined by their Background, Motivation, and Class.
  • Alternate XP Cost Chart - Sort of a middle-ground between the rules in the main book (which are perhaps too generous and become somewhat broken in a long campaign) and the optional rules in the Trailblazers Toolkit (which impose an early limit and leave you with nothing to spend XP on in a long campaign). 
  • Patron vs Rival vs Quest - A mathematical analysis that really drives home that Patron Missions are where the big bucks lie. If your goal is to "win" 5 Parsecs, you should focus almost exclusively on Patron Missions.


A Bit of Context For The Above

In the early part of 2020, I played 6 very enjoyable sessions of a campaign of Five Parsecs From Home 2nd Edition to fill stir-crazy hours during the Pandemic. As it became clear the Pandemic was going to have us all house-bound for a long while, I got a bunch of RPG campaigns going on zoom instead, and I sort of let 5 Parsecs fade and fizzle in favor of (remote) human contact. RPGs saved me from going crazy in the year+ of covid exile.

Then in 2021, the new and improved 3rd Edition of 5 Parsecs came out, and it's so good, it summoned me back out the Fringe. I've got a pretty busy schedule these days, but I squeeze in a game in the evenings whenever I can. 

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