Community News

Crew of Atlantis Fighting Off Intruders During Battle Exercise

PALDOR SYSTEM — While conducting training exercises in the asteroid belt around the Paldor System, USS Atlantis has been boarded by several intruders.


Poll of the Week: Starfleet Retro Revival

When it comes to Starfleet ship design, there are always new designs in the works. When it launched, the Galaxy-class was considered the safest, most advanced ship in Starfleet and assignment to one was an honor. Within ten years of its launch, the more powerful Sovereign-class was designed, built, and put into service to take its title as the most advanced class of ship in the fleet. The 2370s also saw new designs tested in the form of the dedicated warship Defiant-class, the Intrepid-class full of new technologies, and the Prometheus-class with an experimental multi-vector assault mode. However, this constant change of what design is the most advanced of the moment doesn’t detract from how dependable Starfleet ships designs can be. Some ships, like the Excelsior-class and Miranda-class, were still seeing regular use a century later. Starfleet ship classes are routinely refitted with new technologies to extend their useful lifespans. Even the Oberth-class remained in regular service for decades.

This week, we’d like to know if there are any older models of ship that could be a valuable asset to Starfleet if they were just updated to modern standards with new technology. Do you think that a Constitution-class redesigned and rebuilt from new components could hold its own against modern explorer designs? Would you like to see the Miranda or the Excelsior revisited and retooled to see that they remain on the front lines of the final frontier into the 25th century? Or maybe you think that Starfleet should be trying new designs and new ideas rather than remaking old ships?

Which older class of ship would you like to see redesigned and reintroduced into the fleet?

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


Join the Star Trek: Picard committee and help us decide how the new show integrates into our universe

The new Star Trek show, Picard, has brought lots of new content into the Trek universe and has potential ramifications for our canon.

With that in mind, the Captains Council has convened a committee to review the changes that the show has potentially introduced to our timeline, and provide a report to the council about what we may need to retconn, what we may need to ignore, and what we may need to worry about after coming seasons of the show.

This committee is looking for volunteers who are interested in helping review the show’s effects on the fleet and assemble the report. Whether you’re a fan of the show or not, you can help out as long as you can be objective about the types of content the Captains Council will need to make a ruling on!

Click here to head to the forums to learn more, ask questions, and volunteer right in the announcement thread.


New Academy Graduate

Please welcome our newest Academy graduate to the UFOP: StarBase 118 fleet: Joshua Sutton!


Aron Kells returns to the Executive Council as a full member

The Executive Council is our community’s highest decision-making body, comprised of a maximum of five admirals and captains who have more than one year of service at that rank. The EC is endowed with the power to commission and decommission vessels, promote members to the rank of captain or beyond, and generally manage OOC concerns.

Appointment to the Executive Council is one of our community’s highest honors, denoting our utmost trust in the leadership and stewardship of each member.

Following the retirement of Rear Admiral Toni Turner after a long and fruitful membership on the Executive Council, the EC is pleased to announce that we have filled the fifth seat with a returning leader: Aron Kells (Tony).


Join us for the fleetwide chat this coming Sunday

We invite all members of our community to join us in the Discord chat room this coming Sunday, for our regularly scheduled get-together, where we’ll talk about what’s happening around the fleet, learn more about each other, and discuss Star Trek!

The chat starts this Sunday, May 17th at 10am Pacific, 1pm Eastern, 6pm UTC and Monday, May 18th at 3am for Australia. Click here to see the start time in your zone, and add this event to your calendar.

This chat is open to all and casual, so feel free to come and go as you please. See you there!


Captain’s Corner: Fleet Captain Aron Kells, USS Thor

Each month, we interview a captain or first officer of the fleet to gain more insight on what it takes to command a ship and learn more about how each of these staff members found their way into these roles.

This month, we’re interviewing Fleet Captain Aron Kells, the CO of the USS Thor, one of two support ships from the Embassy of Duronis II. The crew of the Embassy has transitioned permanently to the Thor and embarked on a new mission.

GALVEN: Thank you for agreeing to take a moment and be interviewed! Could you tell us a little about yourself for our readers out there?

KELLS: Sure! My name is Tony, which I use primarily in part because I’ve used half a dozen different characters as PCs since I first joined the fleet back in 2005. Kells is probably the character I’ve simmed for most often, which is one of the reasons I chose him for command this time (but more on that later). A fun fact about me is that I joined 118 when I was still in high school and I’ve just recently finished my PhD, so the group has seen me through my entire higher education journey.

You just recently took command of the USS Thor. With your previous command service record, has it been a smooth transition process? 

Very much so. My first regular command was of the Mercury, almost exactly eight years ago, and that was a more difficult situation. The original CO retired only four months after launching the ship, and his replacement lasted less than a week before he had to take an emergency, long-term LOA. The Mercury’s XO was a real trooper and was a great help to me when I came on as CO, and I knew when I found out what a force Brian (Lt. Cmdr. Teller, the Embassy’s and now the Thor’s XO) had been in helping to keep things together, I knew that the work he and the other great staff members had started put me in a really strong place to come in and help the Embassy crew move to Thor.


New bylaw codifies First Officer requirements

The Executive Council (EC) is constantly evaluating our successes – and debriefing our challenging moments – to determine how we can replicate what works and change what doesn’t. As a result of a recent evaluation of a ship decommissioning, the EC recognized that we had no defined requirements for the selection of First Officers, and ensuring that they were recognized as the second in command of ship.

A new bylaw has been created to solve this confusion, with three main points:

  • First, that a Commanding Officer of a vessel must have the appropriate authority to choose the First Officer of the vessel.
  • Second, that a First Officer must be a member in good standing with a minimum of nine months experience since graduating from the Academy, OR six months experience and experience acting as a Training Officer in the Academy.
  • Third, that a First Officer is the ship’s second in command even when other players – who may have a higher rank more experience – is assigned to the ship.

As part of drafting this bylaw, the two Councils – in coordination with First Officers from ships in the fleet – has drafted guidance about the rights and responsibilities of First Officers. This guidance is made available to new First Officers upon appointment to the role, in addition to our detailed “Lt. Commanders Training Manual.”

Head to the wiki to read Bylaw 9 and see more details.

While the UFOP Constitution defines our group’s structure and elements, the bylaws are clarifying additions which help guide our day-to-day work and ensure that important rules have the weight of community law.


Poll of the Week: Academy Extracurriculars

A student’s stay at Starfleet Academy can be a lengthy one, spanning four years of intensive training and education, combining multiple disciplines and academic achievements of phenomenal proportions. Many of those who graduate in their fields are the top the academy has to offer, including some with double majors, some cramming in as much study as they can into the brief season until they’re flung off into the wide-open wilds of space.

However, outside that realm of high academic achievement and success, like any other college and university, Starfleet Academy provides the students with the opportunity to take part in multiple extracurricular activities. Activities are structured around exercise, learning new skills, socialising with other cadets, becoming self-disciplined, and taking a break from the rigours of their chosen career.

With that in mind, our question for this Poll of the Week is:

What extracurricular activities at Starfleet Academy did your character find love or loathing for?

Click here to head to the forums now and vote in this week’s poll. Be sure to leave a comment in the thread!


The 2020 Writing Challenge is still accepting entries

Now we’re at the halfway mark, we’ve had some excellent entries submitted so far, and you’ve still got time to get yours in!

As a reminder, for this year, following along with the themes of the recent newly released series of Star Trek: Picard, and the current situation many of us are facing at home, the chosen theme is one of Star Trek‘s most beloved storytelling mechanics — Echoes of the Past.

“The view screen snaps into focus on an impossible sight, and a voice from your past speaks to you and you alone…”

We’ve already had some inspired entries so far — from the perspective of a cat to the wise words of a parent, to a Borg storyline — there’s a wide range of possibilities for everyone and anyone to get stuck into. Let your creative muscles flex and your imagination roam free. You’re not confined

For everyone who participates, there’s a Special 2020 Writing Challenge badge up for grabs!

To get started and learn more about the rules, click here.

All stories must be submitted by Sunday, May 17th. Good luck!


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