Fantasy Flight Games has posted a preview: Designing the Game. It contains short descriptions of their development process including topics such as Designing the Core Mechanics, Combat System, Producing the Art and the Plastic Figures. The preview covers production from its concept up to the final product.
Designing the Combat System:
In a game with so many “moving parts,” each individual piece is unique and integral to the whole of the game. We needed to create a combat system that was elegant and strategic while simulating the video game.
When we began to design StarCraft: The Board Game, we knew that an innovative and intuitive combat system would be vital. The challenge was to create a dynamic system that captured the excitement and tactics of StarCraft, but at the same time did not involve fiddly counters or time-consuming bookkeeping.
The first step was abstracting combat so that battles were broken into individual skirmishes. The use of skirmishes (inspired by such games as Avalon Hill’s War at Sea), helped us simulate how players order their units to attack in the video game by targeting specific enemies.
The second level we added to the combat system was the combat cards. By making each player manage a hand of cards, we were able to add strategic decision making and remove record keeping.