Starbase 118

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Forums Roundup: July 2013

We’re now halfway through 2013, though it seems almost as if it just started. Plenty of things have happened already this year, but there are plenty more still coming. Be sure to check out the forums to see the latest news, fun, and interesting facts about and around the fleet. Here are just a few!

Stop in to congratulate the winners of the May/June Writing Challenge, and be on the lookout for the next round’s topic:

Head on over to the Featured Bio threads and see some of the best wiki pages, or nominate an officer you think should be in the running:

There’s a new Poll of the Week each and every week! Be sure to join the conversation and let your voice be heard!

Read a great sim lately? Nominate it for the Top Sims contest and put it up against other great sims from across the fleet for a chance to win the Top Sim of the year!

Don’t forget, there’s a ton of fleetwide activities that could use your help! Even if you only have a little bit of time to spare, there’s something you can do to help:

And there’s always games and updates on the forums from each of the ships. Come join the conversation and meet some officers from other ships and see what everyone is up to all in one place!

Until next month, happy simming!

Writer’s Workshop: Adding Depth to Your Character

Some writers find it challenging to know when and how to add depth to their characters. It can be easy to stay too focused on the present, acting and reacting to current events and dialogue, while neglecting to show WHY your character should feel or behave that way. When your audience has a better understanding of your character’s background and belief system, it adds more power to almost any decision that character makes and allows for more impact and meaning in your writing.

Everyone had a different technique, and like with most creative art there’s really no wrong way to do this. Here are a few different methods you can use to add character depth, tailored specifically to the nature of SB118’s simming format:

1. Back Story/Flashback Sims

There may not be a more effective method than doing a good, ol’ flashback sim. You can just step away from present events and take us back to a formative moment in your character’s past. This requires a bit more narrative writing than the usual back-and-forth, tag-and-respond simming we do with our shipmates. You are entirely responsible for the cause and outcome of your sim, so you may need to put more forethought and even create an outline for how you want the sim to go before writing.

FNN Update: Freighter Crisis on 118

On Federation Starbase 118, in the Trinity sector, at the crossroads of Klingon, Federation, and Romulan territories, a crisis has arisen that could cost thousands of lives.

An independent freighter has docked with the base for emergency repairs. The freighter, laden with medical supplies for a needy colony, was unable to complete the journey, and the Starfleet crew was more than happy to help them get repaired and underway.

A common enough situation for the 118 crew. But the situation has turned out to be far more complicated, and dangerous, than anyone could have predicted.

After an explosion rocked the vessel, and Starfleet crew entered to provide emergency relief, it was discovered that the medical supplies on board were Vitlali 7, an unapproved medication which cannot be bought or sold within Federation territory due to the fact that the medicine degrades over time into a dangerous intoxicant.

The crew of the freighter, a rough bunch, meanwhile have fallen into conflict bordering on mutiny. During the altercation, among accusations of theft and sabatoge, it was revealed that the medication is indeed beyond its expiry date.

Meanwhile, a small fleet of warships has decloaked outside the base, demanding the freighter’s cargo.

We will have updates as events proceed.


Reporter ‘Jiph’ (Quadrant Press Associated) via SB118 Media Office,
Commander Alexander Jayson Cregg
Press Secretary
Starbase 118

Ninteen Years of Roleplay

On or about June 15, 1994, an adventure would begin that no one could have ever foreseen would still be around 19 years later. Thereabouts the group known as the UFOP SIMming club was born. At the time the group was very different than it is today. Perhaps the only similarities were that the adventures took place in the post-TNG era of Star Trek (which had just ended its run) and that Fleet Admiral Wolf was in charge. As for Star Trek, Deep Space Nine was in its infancy, Star Trek: Generations had not yet been released, Voyager was on the drawing board and no one had ever heard of J.J. Abrams. Meanwhile, the UFOP SIMming club (Starbase 118 had not yet entered the picture) was based live AOL chat rooms. Play by Email would not become the group standard for a few more years.

Amazingly, our community has grown and persisted. Since formation the group has had 75 players serving as commanding officers aboard 67 different simming sites. Fleet Admiral Wolf commanded the very first ship, the USS Phoenix-B, a Nebula Class starship. Over time the group would enlarge as additional ships and commanding officers would enter the fray. About a year after the group’s formation, the original Starbase 118 began operations also under the command of Wolf. The following year, another mainstay of the group would begin: the UFOP Reporter. The Reporter acted as the group’s official newsletter under the editorship of Elinor of Kanist. Over the next 15 years, there would be a total of 44 issues. As time would progress, the use of the group’s website and eventual adoption of WordPress would make the Reporter obsolete as news would be published on a continuous basis.

Evolution would continue within the group. About ten years after the group’s formation, an official constitution would be ratified which became critical as the group became more difficult to manage without an official set of rules. The group’s website would move a few times using a variety of free webservers until finally settling in using the domain name. Soon the UPDS would follow, which made keeping track of ship rosters more manageable. A sense of community would also develop over the forums, which have now been around for more than a decade.

Part of the reason for the group’s longevity has been its cadre of talented writers that have created a wide variety of adventures in an alternate Star Trek universe all on its own. Today, and for many years the group has used a play by email format via Yahoo! Groups. Because of this format, many of the sims written from more than a decade ago still live on the Internet.

In general, most of the simming sites within the group have been starships, but there have been several non-starship settings as well. Besides the currently operating Starbase 118 Operations and the Duronis II Embassy, the group has had a presence at Deep Space 72 and the Daris Colony. Perhaps the most unique site that the group ever managed was the USS Panther, which was a captured Romulan Warbird that fought for Starfleet during one of the group’s early blockbusters known as the Yolanda Wars.

Next year will be the group’s twentieth anniversary, an amazing achievement in a world where longevity is far from the norm. To paraphrase the President of the Federation from Star Trek IV, thanks to the dedication of Fleet Admiral Wolf and all of the players who participate in the group, “We are forever.”

Forums Roundup: June 2013

I never realized just how much I missed the forums until the website was attacked and, as a result, went down for more than just a little while. Now that it’s back, I find myself slipping back into old routines and checking it often. What about you? Did you miss the forums while they were away? Are you back to checking them the way you used to?

Publicity Team: Continuing Mission!

publicityAs Star Trek: Into Darkness draws ever closer, it’s time for UFOP: Starbase 118 to prepare to send out hails on all frequencies in preparation to bring as many people as we can into the fleet! The best possible ambassador for our group is YOU! Who better to instill enthusiasm into the legions of trek fans out there and tempt them to join our ranks!

While the Publicity Team members put their pedal to the metal, there are a couple of little things that the membership at large (that’s you!) can do that will have a serious impact in helping us out! For those of you who have Facebook accounts, we’d love you to follow us! Everyone who likes and shares our posts is spreading the good word to friends who may potentially do the same! That gives us a shot at reaching people who we would otherwise not be reaching, and there’s no telling who we could tempt in. The same goes for Twitter! Give us a follow and retweet our posts! It’s all great advertising!

Also, we have a great opportunity to make an impact in real life by posting our awesome flyers in local comic book/sci-fi stores! To find out how to get one, for free, and help to spread the magic to other trek fans, head here. Advertising in this way helps us reach out to countless people who may not know that we exist or that email roleplaying exists!

If you’re interested in joining the Publicity Team to help with the big push, check out our recruitment page!

With your help, we should be able to dramatically increase the number of people who want to join our awesome fleet over the course of the next couple of months and beyond! Any time you can spare for us would be greatly appreciated! Remember – more members means more ships, a stronger community, and huge possibilities for the future!

Top Sims Contest: Round 10 now open

Top Sims LogoCongratulations to LtJG Ben Livingston, whose sim “Brotherly Love” has won Round 8 of the contest!

Round 9 is now being judged by a panel of judges from each ship, while Round 10 has just opened. The submission deadline is midnight EST (GMT -5) on Sunday, April 28th. The winner of the round goes on to the second run-off in May.

Nominating a sim for Round 10 is easy:

1. Head to the Top Sims Contest page, and check the calendar to check which round we’re on.

2. Start a new topic.

3. Paste the sim into the text field, and share it with the fleet.

You can make your voice heard, and make sure the writers of our fleet get the recognition they deserve. Nominate someone’s sim today!

Forums Roundup – April 2013

Sb118-stylized-10With the cold weather waning for most of us, and spring on its way in, the world itself seems to be coming alive around us. For some of us, that means more time outside, but for others, it’s simply a time when writing becomes a bit easier to do as our minds open up to the energy of spring itself. No matter what you’re doing this time of year, be sure to take a moment to stop by the Starbase 118 Forums, where there is always something going on.

Top Sims Contest Round 9

Top Sims LogoThe Top Sims Contest is now taking submissions for Round 9. The deadline is midnight EST (GMT -5) on Sunday, April 14. So get out there, nominate some of the great sims, and make sure they get the recognition they deserve.

Nominating a sim is easy:

1. Head to the Top Sims Contest page, and check the calendar to see which round we’re on.

2. Start a new topic.

3. Paste the sim into the text field, and share it with the fleet.

Visit the Top Sims Contest page today, and make your voice heard.

Publicity Team Relaunch: Your Fleet Needs You!

150px-PT_logoWe’re now just under two months away from the most eagerly anticipated Star Trek event of the year – the release of Star Trek: Into Darkness! When the first film in J. J. Abrams’s run was released in 2009, UFOP: Starbase 118 saw a large influx of members. Some of you reading now may remember joining at that time! We’re expecting a similar occurence this time around – we need to be ready to reach out to the members of the Star Trek community who are itching to continue the journey to seek out new life and discover strange new worlds that begins, or is reawakend, with a simple trip to the cinema!

The publicity team has always been responsible for marketing our group and enticing in new members to swell our ranks. We’re currently in the process of a relaunch – refocussing our efforts into search engine optimisation, social networking and casting our net as wide as possible to increase the number of people that we reach. We’re always looking for new members to help us in our endeavours! If you can spare 15 minutes per week (or more!) and you’d like to help bring new blood into the group then all you need to do is talk to your CO, who will be able to arrange with Captain Herrera for you to join the team! But joining the publicity team isn’t the only way you can help!

This call goes out to ALL members of the fleet who have a Facebook account (under your real name!) – have you found the UFOP: Starbase 118 Facebook page and liked it? We need you to like and share our Facebook posts – the more people we have doing that, the more our group gets noticed. Who knows, someone in your extended network of friends might be a secret Star Trek addict and dying to joing a Play By Email roleplay? And if your friends like and share our posts too, that’s when the magic happens! Taking it even further, if you have a twitter account, the same thing is possible – follow us on twitter and retweet our posts to spread the word to the masses!

We need you! It’s time to move this project to warp speed!

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