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Help crown the Top Sim of 2017 by voting now

This is it: Our last Top Sims Contest vote ever. As we prepare to close this contest for good, we only have one more job. And that’s crowning the winner of this year’s contest!

Read each of these sims before you vote:

Once you’ve read the sims, head to the forums to register your vote. But don’t delay: Voting closes on Sunday, October 15 at 11:59pm Pacific time.


USS Blackwell rescued from minefield trap

PARTHA EXPANSE – A Taventa Robotics starship and the USS Atlantis have successfully rescued the USS Blackwell from a verteron particle-producing minefield.

En route to Arndall, the USS Blackwell was stopped by a deadly minefield, producing veteron particles that crippled sensors and made faster-than-light travel impossible. Contact with the deadly minefield left the USS Blackwell and its crew stranded and fighting for survival.

Initial contact with the field caused significant damage to the medical vessel, including multiple hull breaches, plasma and atmosphere venting, uncontrolled fires, and severe damage to both nacelles. Left without warp capability, sensors, and communications while running on emergency power, Blackwell was unable to call for help, or safely escape. Damage control procedures were immediately implemented throughout the ship.


New Academy Graduates

Please welcome our newest Academy graduates to the UFOP: StarBase 118 fleet: Emilia Krugol!


Odd Jobs: Lt. Colonel Mitchell the Top Gun of Duronis II Embassy

In “odd jobs” we examine some less traditional posts and the characters and writers behind them. Today, the featured character is Lieutenant Colonel Rode Mitchell, the Commander, Air Group (CAG) of the Duronis II Embassy.

CHOI: For those of us who aren’t familiar with your character, how did Rode Mitchell come to be CAG of Duronis II’s Embassy?

MITCHELL: Mitchell became the CAG for the Embassy through a discussion with Rear Admiral Turner, Captain Tyr Waltas, and Major Hannibal Parker, who commands the Embassy’s Marine unit. At the time, following the wedding of Admiral Turner and Captain Waltas, Mitchell resigned from Starfleet and traveled out to Duronis II to retire. But after arriving at Duronis II, and events events going on with Laudean protesters, the three senior officers approached me to take over as the CAG, since the Marine unit on the planet is large enough to have its own air/space wing. At the time, it was intended to make use of my experience as I’ve served as a fighter unit leader on multiple ships, and took some of the extra duties off Major Parker.


Natural Order falls in the Gamma Quadrant

RAYTAS SECTOR – As news of the atrocities committed at Protocol Station Nine spread through the sector, the Natural Order stands divided against itself.

The terrorist organization calling itself the “Natural Order” has undergone a major schism, following the revelation of the crimes committed by their members during the destruction of Protocol Station Nine. According to preliminary reports, the culprits and their sympathizers have been banished and branded traitors by the remainder of Natural Order members, who have since re-joined the Confederacy with peace talks.

With their primary adversary seemingly defeated, the crew of the USS Athena, commanded by Captain Selene Faranfey, have been granted temporary access to the garden-planet Ramatusia by the Dryary Confederation Directorate, in recognition of their help in bringing down the Natural Order.

Captain Faranfey and Commander Alexander Bishop have taken the opportunity to host their wedding on this beautiful planet, where all signs of civilization are holo-camouflaged to preserve the splendor of the landscape. The reception took place at the Cliff Hotel Luxury Resort, and has so far included a traditional Antosian ceremony, cliff-diving from the hotel roof into the pool underneath, and an emotional singing duet by Lieutenant Commander Alexander Williams and Lieutenant Junior Grade Femi Cattan. Also of note, the ceremony was graced by the presence of Captain Jalana Rajel, attending via holoconference from her post onboard the USS Constitution-B. The festivities are scheduled to last until one of the newlyweds collapses from exhaustion, as per the Antosian custom.

“I am sure the wedding was beautiful,” newly-promoted Lieutenant Commander Julia Tiner said. “I got to see part of the reception, and the bride and groom looked a bit droopy.”

Writte by Lan Riel


Writer’s Workshop: Realistic Injuries

It seems that Starfleet personnel are quite the accident prone bunch. Whether they’re being hurled over a console, having lungs stolen by Vidiians or taking a phased blast to the leg, barely a week passes without some kind of horrific injury to a crewman.

When one of our characters is injured, how do we describe it? Do we base our writing on our own experiences or simply imagine how it would feel? How do you write the injuries in a compelling manner that engages your audience?

Not all of us have had the misfortune to suffer serious injury, and perhaps find it difficult to imagine such as situation.

Leia Fee and Susannah Shepherd have put together this incredibly helpful resource on realistic injuries, which covers a wide variety of injuries and symptoms, including a description of the stages of blood loss.

In addition to their injury descriptions, is a references section with a few links to other helpful resources. For those who are squeamish, fear not, they haven’t included any images!

So next time you character gets into a fight with an Orion slaver, why not try to add some more detail to their suffering!


Poll of the Week: The Age of Automation

For better or for worse, humanity has entered the Age of Automation. Computers and machines, once visible only in imaginations and in television studios (as props) now form a nigh inescapable bond around us. Devices that are orders of magnitude more powerful than the Apollo spacecrafts, the pinnacle of technology a mere fifty years ago, now fit comfortably in our hands. In some ways, these enormous advances have benefitted us greatly. In other ways, most of us would agree that there have been drawbacks. Face-to-face conversation is now at a premium.

Star Trek showed us a world filled with incredible technologies, too numerous to account for entirely. We all know of the warp drive, and the transporter, and on the whole, these things brought great hope and prosperity to the Federation. But there were little joys that seemed to be lost as the years past. Cooking is a rarity in the Federation- replicator units have removed the need for it.  Keiko O’Brien’s reaction to Miles’ statement that his mother cooked with live animals proves this. The use of pen and paper seems to have been lost as well. Save for a few select instances, everything from scientific reports to fictional stories have been transcribed upon PADDs, the mechanical devices so commonly seen in a character’s hand. I can’t speak for the rest of you, but I take pride and joy in cleaning the house. That seems to be absent in the world of Star Trek, at least onboard ships.

Certainly these things are often seen as hassles. Who wants to cook after ten hours at work? Who would pine for additional paperwork? And cleaning the house? Forget it! But I feel that if we lost these things to automation, we might begin to feel their absense keenly.

What do you think? Do you agree, or would you be glad to be rid of these irritations? Or do you have other tasks that fit into a similar vein? Join us on the forums to vote now!


The Podcast Team is creating community content every month

The members of our Podcast Team are working together to deliver to our community new content each month that informs and entertains. Our YouTube channel, where these podcasts are posted, helps to improve our search engine rankings and draw in prospective members.

If you’re a skilled writer, someone who enjoys writing music, or even someone who has a great reading voice, the Podcast Team could use your talents. Live sim readings, music composition, and script writing are important parts of putting together the podcast.

To find out more about the team, and how to get involved, head to our forums and leave your contact information.

Join us today to help us wrap up the September podcast and plan for the November podcast!


Shakedown cruise makes detour to far-off lands and times

TYPHON EXPANSE — While taking the USS Thor on a shakedown cruise, the senior staff has suddenly found themselves split into several groups and experiencing impossible events in far off places.

The Embassy of Duronis II staff took the USS Thor on a shakedown cruise in the Typhon Expanse in what was expected to be a routine exercise. Apart from some minor glitches – such as an Emergency Medical Hologram activating when not needed, and some sensors needed extra alignment and other typical adjustments expected for a new ship – the Thor performed excellently. Satisfied with the performance of ship and crew, Admiral Toni Turner called for a break, and the crew broke into small groups for lunch. It was at this point the crew began to disappear.


Our last Top Sims runoff closes soon – vote now!

As we wind down the Top Sims Contest, it’s time to vote in the final runoff round of the contest. The winner of this runoff will proceed to the final round, where it’ll compete against the two sims that won the earlier runoff rounds this year. Your vote has a big impact on which sim will head to the final round, so don’t delay!

TO START, please read these sims:

NEXT, vote for the sim you like the most!

Click here to go to the poll now. The poll closes on Friday, September 15!

DON’T vote for a sim just because you serve on the same crew as the person who wrote it. It should be the sim that’s the best written, with strong characterization, and evocative or descriptive scene-setting. Any crew that “stuffs the ballot” (by having everyone on the crew vote for the same sim to ensure that it wins this poll) will be eliminated from the contest and shamed by the rest of the community as terrible, terrible cheaters. That would be awful.

Good luck to the nominees!


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