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Task Force In Focus: Community History Team

The Community History Team, also known as History Team, is an archival team that helps organize efforts to keep the history of the group together in one central place (such as on the Ship Histories, crew history pages, current crew manifests, etc.) and harness the enthusiasm of history buffs who have time on their hands.  Today we meet with the History Team’s Facilitator Lieutenant Commander Addison MacKenzie so we can learn more about this important part of our community! 

DeVeau: Thank you for joining us!  Would you please start by giving us a short overview on the History Team and how it supports our StarBase 118 community?

MacKenzie: The Community History Team is actually pretty cool because not only are we responsible for keeping records of things that are currently happening in the fleet, but we’re also responsible for digging into the archives to piece together things most of the community hasn’t seen for a long time!

We have a wide variety of tasks, and I’ll just mention some of the main ones here:

  1. Reconstructing crew manifests and histories.
  2. Assisting COs of current ships to maintain their crew histories
  3. Digging back through the archives to log  badge and award recipients
  4. Maintaining a “This Month in History” segment every month where we highlight an interesting aspect from the fleet’s history.

We do quite a bit more, but those are some of the highlights.

What is your favorite thing about working on this task force?

We have quite a variety of projects, so for example,  if you’re someone who works well in a group, we have tasks that need a high degree of collaboration. Likewise, if you’re someone who works better by yourself and prefers to work at your own pace, we have tasks that fit that bill, too.

Who can join this task force?

Absolutely anyone, Ensign and above.

How would a new member join this task force?

To join, interested members may either DM me on Discord, post in the #history room on Discord, or let their CO know – they’ll be able to connect us..

What is the most fun thing about working on this task force?

My answer isn’t going to be obvious or conventional, but hear me out… One of my favorite things to work on are the ship history reconstructions. Because this fleet has been around for so long, you can imagine that we’ve run quite a few ships over our history. There’s something very fun about getting to go back to reconstruct the entire record of a ship’s run – getting to see who participated that has since left the fleet, and who is still around. And, I have to say, I’m not quick when I work on projects like these because I often get drawn into reading old posts by current members  ::cough:: Captain Rahman ::cough:: – it’s fascinating to me to read posts by writers/characters early in their careers.

Thank you so much for your insights on the History Team!

You can read more about the Community History Team on the wiki.

 

 

 


Honor of the Admiralty Winner: Fleet Captain Roshanara Rahman

Join us for a special interview in our series of interviews with winners of awards from our recent 2020 Awards Ceremony. The Honor of the Admiralty is a new staff award for 2020 and is the highest award that can be conferred upon a UFOP: Starbase 118 staff member under the rank of Rear Admiral. This award recognizes those who have served as staff members for a minimum of five years in a multitude of disciplines. From facilitating our task forces, engaging with the Captains Council, and leading with the utmost dedication, these writers volunteer their time, effort, and skill to building our game and community and have comprehensively earned the respect and loyalty of members.

This month we’re interviewing the writer behind Roshnara Rahman playing a female  Kriosian who serves as Captain of the USS Veritas. For 2020, she was the recipient of the Honor of the Admiralty, the first player to earn this prestigious award.

DeVeau: Would you be willing to share a little about yourself, the writer behind Captain Roshanara Rahman?  

Rahman:  My name is Rich. I’m from Michigan and live now in New England, USA. I got into Star Trek through TNG (tuning in just as the seventh season was wrapping up!), and I love being part of a wider international fan community here at StarBase 118.

How did you come across StarBase 118 and what led you to join the group?

I joined back in 2010, five years after Star Trek: Enterprise had gone off the air and although the new JJ Abrams-directed Star Trek movie had just come out one year earlier, I really missed the “prime timeline” and specifically the TNG/DS9/VOY-era. I’d been playing a little Star Trek Online around that time to get a little taste of stories set in that era, but I wanted something deeper, and having previously dabbled in play-by-email Trek games back in the 90s, I did a search for Star Trek simming and found my way to StarBase 118.


Community Spotlight: StarBase 118 DeviantArt

Welcome to Community Spotlight, where we take a look at all of the amazing resources and social media offerings from StarBase 118!  Today we feature the StarBase 118 DeviantArt page, which is kept up with the Image Team.

DeviantArt is a well known website that brings artists and art lovers together.  It allows the Image Team to highlight their best work including character pictures, ships designs, posters and emblems. Over the past year the visibility of the StarBase 118 DeviantArt page has drastically increased due to the hard work of the Image Team, especially Lieutenant Alieth who has overseen the DeviantArt page in 2397 and 2398

Let’s hear more about how it works and how you can stay connected.  Today we’re sitting down with Lieutenant Alieth to learn more.

TAYBRIM: Thank you so much for joining us today!  Let’s start with how did StarBase 118’s DeviantArt page get started?  How long has it been around?

Alieth: Hey there Commodore! A pleasure to be here to chat with you once more. Answering your questions, actually our DeviantArt site has been around for a while, it was created six years ago now. It got a bit of activity in 2015 featuring some contest winners and similar content and after that it’s been a bit dormant until I found out about it in June or July 2020 and then pestered the Image Collective till i got the chance to revive it a bit.

How many contributors add to the body of work on the DeviantArt page?

Given what we do in the Image Collective, most of the images in our DeviantArt gallery come from the work of this team, in fact I have tried to include images produced by each of the team members!

I primarily try to upload the newest images produced (as they are imagery about the active characters, NPCs and ships) that we record in our image tracking. Nevertheless, my mail and DMs are open if anyone wants to suggest an image that can be included in our DeviantArt gallery, I’m always scanning the wiki for something that catches my eye to let the internet know about the amazing characters and stories that we create in our community. So if you want to suggest an image, it should only have to meet these criteria:

  • Be an image created by and for our community.
  • Be watermarked with the Starbase 118 watermark (or allow that the IC add it to the image)
  • Be of medium to high quality

Do not hesitate to nominate images you love!

What types of posts get the most feedback?

Starships’ images or posters are our stars. For example, our two most favourite images are  this poster of the USS Constitution B and this image of the USS Thor.

The bulk of our gallery consists of character images and, as such, these get a lot of attention, particularly aliens and women. For example, our most liked character is Lieutenant JG Vorin (from the USS Gorkon) followed closely by Lieutenant Commander Lia Rouiancet (from the USS Thor).

Then there are also surprises with some pictures! For example this one (which Wolf suggested that should be uploaded and I was very resistant about it) is our third most liked image and the portrait of a certain Fleet Captain is still our most commented image (and one of the most liked too!)

How can members of the fleet follow the posts on DeviantArt?

You can follow our gallery on DeviantArt here! Or you can keep an eye out for Dyno on the officers-club channel on discord. Unless there are any major issues, our gallery updates Monday/Wednesday/Friday at 2pm Pacific / 5pm Eastern / 10pm London and at 9am Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday for Sydney (AUS).

Thank you so much, Lieutenant Alieth!

You can check out the StarBase 118’s DeviantArt Page here!


Federation News Service Briefing: Stardate 239802

The Federation News Service is a spinoff of the StarBase 118 Star Trek PBEM RPG, reporting news headlines from across the United Federation of Planets to Federation citizens, along with other reader-submitted stories from other RPGs and fan works. Here are the latest stories published by the FNS:

Scandal as Matteo Barana leaves Trinity City Eagles Stardate 239802.06
BETA ANTARES IV — The Trinity City Eagles have cut off talks to re-sign Matteo Barana, their former star Centre.

Fire on Haldon IV Engulfs Forest– Stardate 239802.12
HALDON IV — A devastating forest fire on the rural world of Haldon IV has destroyed many trees in the Grizon Forest. Police are investigating a potential lead on the possibility of a consciously lit fire.

Standalone Holonovel From Orion Author Jayssi: Colonist Horror In Gothic FictionStardate 239801.19
SAN FRANCISCO, EARTH — An eerie short holonovel by the superb horror writer Jayssi pitches an unassuming colony on its head in an intriguing case of a murdered Governor and suspicious holorecordings surface.

Burger Nagus Expands As It Opens Another Franchise – Stardate 239801.26
DEEP SPACE 224 — Expanding enterprises across the galaxy, Burger Nagus launches yet another franchise; it’s first in the Borderlands, aboard the space station.

Interested in keeping the public updated on the latest developments across the Federation? The Federation News Service welcomes both one-time and regular story submissions.

Enjoy a creative avenue for simmers, role players, and fan fiction writers to develop the larger prime Trek universe. What’s going on in the entertainment world of the Federation? What’s happening back home on Earth, Vulcan, Andoria, and beyond? You can help shape life in the 24th century! Learn more at fednewsservice.com.


The Elinor of Kanist Order of Excellence winner: Vice Admiral Quinn Reynolds

Join us for a special interview in our series of interviews with winners of awards from our recent 2020 Awards Ceremony. The Elinor of Kanist Order of Excellence is a new award for 2020 that recognizes those who have served the fleet as a staff member for at least 5 years, attained the rank of Rear Admiral or higher, previously been awarded the Picard Award and Staff Member of the Year Award, and continue to serve the fleet to the betterment of all members. This is the highest staff honor, celebrating longevity, dedication to the fleet, and the perseverance for wearing the Admiral’s belt.

Last month we looked at the namesake of this award, Elinor of Kanist and her legacy for the StarBase 118 Community.  This month we’re interviewing the writer behind Vice Admiral Quinn Reynolds, the first player to earn this prestigious award.

Taybrim: Tell us a little about the writer behind the character — where in the world do you hail from?

Reynolds: I’m from no particular place in the United Kingdom—I was born in Scotland, but I moved around a lot in my youth. I’m currently living in Yorkshire, England with my partner and our son.

One of Admiral Elinor of Kanist’s legacies was founding the Training Team, and you are our current Academy Commandant.  Tell us more about your involvement with this important taskforce.

Like many, I started as a training officer back when I was a Lieutenant and I very much enjoyed that time. I took a break from the Academy for a while to concentrate on my captaincy and then returned as a Cadet Steward, moving into the Deputy Commandant role and finally Commandant. As Commandant I have a wide variety of responsibilities: reviewing applications, overseeing individual classes, answering questions and offering guidance to our training officers, acting as a Fleet Placement Officer, overseeing the ongoing development of our processes and more.


Federation News Service Briefing: Stardate 239801

The Federation News Service is a spinoff of the StarBase 118 Star Trek PBEM RPG, reporting news headlines from across the United Federation of Planets to Federation citizens, along with other reader-submitted stories from other RPGs and fan works. Here are the latest stories published by the FNS:

Laser Misfire And Mass Casualty Incident Leads To Bizarre Political Drama – Stardate 239801.09
POLLUS — In the days since a planetary defence laser levelled a village on the planet of Pollus in the Par’tha Expanse, political winds have shifted, potentially ending a groundbreaking bid of a reform-minded candidate for the planet’s highest government office.

Space Station Overrun With Yellow Rats, Leading To Failing Life SupportStardate 239801.15
SELARIS SPACE STATION, TRINITY SECTOR — A civilian space station is on the edge of collapse after a program runs amok in the computer core.

Copernicus City Theatre To Stage Betazoid, Cardassian AdaptationsStardate 239801.22
COPERNICUS CITY, LUNA — The Copernicus City Amateur Dramatics Society (CCAmDrams) announced their 2398 season today, marking the first time that musical adaptations of Betazoid and Cardassian literary fiction will be performed on Luna.

Lawbreaking And Drunkenness Aboard The USS Fortuna – Double Standards In Starfleet – Stardate 239801.29
USS FORTUNA — An anonymous source aboard the Starfleet vessel USS Fortuna (NCC-79904) has reached out to the FNS claiming that there are secret stashes of Romulan Ale hidden across the vessel.

Interested in keeping the public updated on the latest developments across the Federation? The Federation News Service welcomes both one-time and regular story submissions.

Enjoy a creative avenue for simmers, role players, and fan fiction writers to develop the larger prime Trek universe. What’s going on in the entertainment world of the Federation? What’s happening back home on Earth, Vulcan, Andoria, and beyond? You can help shape life in the 24th century! Learn more at fednewsservice.com.


Featured Founder: Elinor of Kanist

For the 2397 Fleetwide awards ceremony, StarBase 118 unveiled a new award aimed at recognizing the highest level of staff in our organization. The Elinor of Kanist Order of Excellence is a staff award and is named for one of StarBase 118’s most significant founding members. 

This award recognizes those who have served the fleet as a staff member for at least five years, attained the rank of Rear Admiral or higher, previously been awarded the Picard Award and Staff Member of the Year Award, and continue to serve the fleet to the betterment of all members. This is the highest staff honor, celebrating longevity, dedication to the fleet, and the perseverance for wearing the Admiral’s belt. The first winner of this award is Vice Admiral Quinn Reynolds.

But who was Elinor of Kanist? Her character was a Vulcan Admiral from the province of Kanist who had a medical background in cardiology. Her player was a founding member and a noted mentor for future commanding officers. She started The Reporter, a monthly group newsletter that was the precursor of the Community News articles you read today. One of the traditions contained in The Reporter was monthly plot summaries from each ship, something which has become a bedrock of StarBase 118 fleet communication. The Reporter also covered promotions and interviews which have become long standing traditions for the fleet. She commanded the USS Centris until her retirement, and her work helping to found the StarBase 118 training team is why the academy training vessel is named the USS Centris-A

Today we are joined by our founder, Fleet Admiral Tristan Wolf, to learn more about Elinor of Kanist, her role in founding the game and his memories of working with her.

Taybrim: Thank you for joining us, Fleet Admiral Wolf. What is your strongest memory of Elinor of Kanist?

Wolf: Oh gosh – the bulk of us working together was over 20 years ago now, and I was a teenager, so lots of those memories are lost to the sands of time! She did return for a brief while in 2012 but didn’t get to stay for too long.

I have lots of vague memories from the early days about projects she wanted to do, like starting The Reporter (the precursor to our current Community News) or how she started innovating the training program out of nothing. She was really my partner in creating the group that you know today, outlasting the other earliest members and being the person who took the premise of the community most seriously.

Ironically, one of the strongest memories I have is a disagreement about the fact that she wanted to take a summer off and decided to bring in Brian Kelly as a sort of “pinch hitter” for her as captain of her ship. As a group, we were just beginning to formalize the process of promotion and making it clear that there were you had to work your way up through the ranks, so I remember being like, “He doesn’t know anything about us!” He ended up being one of two players who jumped into command ranks (the other being Alexander VonGrippen, of the Excalibur-G; Ciara Randor brought the StarWind – a ship she was running independently – into the group, but she had been a member up to that point already). And he wrote the UFOP Constitution! So it all worked out in the end, but this goes to show that we didn’t fall fully formed into the universe, and there were lots of disagreements about policy and process along the way!


Ship Closeup – USS Narendra

“The legacy of heroes is the memory of a great name and the inheritance of a great example.” The Narendra’s official motto pays homage to her legacy, but her Klingon allies granted the ship an unofficial motto: DabuQlu’DI’ yISuv. (When threatened, fight.)

The USS Narendra is an Ambassador-class starship and  was first launched under the command of Fleet Captain Sal Taybrim. She received her first major refit in 2371, which greatly expanded her shield and structural integrity, as well as upgrading her weapon systems to current standards. This was done anticipating the tensions with the Dominion.  

The Ambassador-class was developed at the San Francisco Fleet Yards. The U.S.S. Enterprise-C was the most famous Ambassador class starship ever commissioned by Starfleet. It was destroyed in battle in 2344 while protecting the Klingon colony on Narendra III from a Romulan attack, and all hands were presumed to be killed in action. This valorous sacrifice bought the Federation several decades of peace with the Klingon Empire.

Today we are joined by the crew of the USS Narendra to tell us more about this storied vessel. The crew range from different kinds of multicultural backgrounds such as Betazoid, Rekarian, Human, El-Aurian, Bajoran, Elaysian, Denobulan, Vulcan,  and Barzans.


Duty Post Award winner – Addison MacKenzie (Prantares Ribbon)

Join us for another in a series of interviews with winners of Duty Post awards from our recent 2020 Awards Ceremony. Our goal is to give you insight into how our fleet’s best simmers write, and imagine their characters.

This month we’re interviewing the writer behind Lieutenant Commander Addison MacKenzie playing a Human female Chief Medical Officer assigned to the USS Thor. She  won the Prantares Ribbon: “Awarded to those Medical officers who has moved beyond competence to display a true gift for the healing arts in the context of space medicine. The officers given this award should display the ability to keep a steady hand in the often hazardous conditions in which they must practice, as well as the willingness to risk their own life to save the lives of others.

MOON: Tell us a little about the writer behind the character — where in the world do you hail from?

MACKENZIE: Sure! Born, raised, and living in Cleveland, Ohio, right on Lake Erie in the U.S. I’m a former professor, but now a full-time musician and conductor when COVID isn’t a thing. I love reading and hanging out with my orange Maine Coon, Fritado.

Captain Aron Kells specifically called out your character’s “mature, professional but wryly funny” attributes. As a CMO character personal connections are important. What advice can you give others who want to create a nuanced bedside manner?

Well, I think that’s something that’s totally dependent on the character. Addison cares deeply about the welfare of her patients, as I think all good doctors do, but she also isn’t afraid to throw shade when someone deserves it. There were a number of people on the Thor who recently had physicals that resulted in some serious sass from their CMO… I think that’s just part of who she is, though. If she were a Vulcan, for example, she’d be a lot different. Probably still funny, but the humor would be very different.


Ship Closeup: U.S.S. Thor Continued …

In part two of the Thor’s Ship Closeup special, I meet with the Medical and Science teams to learn more about the specific medical and scientific capabilities of the Vesta class.

Hearing a rumour that the Thor’s medical team are dispensing gummy bears to encourage regular crew medicals, I’ve decided to try my luck and head over to Sickbay on Deck 10 to meet with Lt. Jg Alieth and Lt. Cmdr. Alexander Brodie.

Garcia: No, I don’t know where the gummy bear rumor came from, but I’m thankful for your time nonetheless. The medical provision seems quite substantial aboard the Thor. What medical facilities does the Vesta class come equipped with?

Alieth: The main sick bay of the USS Thor is slightly larger than that of the rest of her Vesta class sisters. We have 15 state-of-the-art biobeds, an ICU with 3 dedicated biobeds and a quarantine unit with the latest technology. We also have two fully equipped surgical suites, which are independent of each other and to the main room of the facility.

In addition to all this, we have an excellent medical department staff, assisted by the latest EMH program, which has a greater capacity of assistance throughout the ship thanks to the holoemiters. This way, medical assistance can be provided even in secluded areas of the ship, or in circumstances that could be dangerous for the medical personnel.

Brodie: We also have a fully equipped counseling suite including not only areas for individual sessions but also a morale and welfare center to cater to the crew’s wider needs – such as family issues and spiritual well-being. We have some families aboard the ship so having these kinds of facilities really makes the difference to caring for everyone aboard.


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