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You are here: Home --> Forum Home --> Recent posts by t_catt11
Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Q&A
Subject: of department heads and NPCs

Most player characters in a Trek game are department heads.

The fact is that there are just too many tasks aboard a ship like Discovery for one person - or even one group or people - to do.

Odds are that you'll have watches to stand on he bridge. You'll have projects to perform an/or oversee. Perhaps there is research, or day to day operations, or a host of other things.

This is where NPCs come in. As a department head, you have wide freedom to create junior officers and/or enlisted personnel to help fill out those duty rosters.

If you create an NPC, you can treat them as a secondary character - post for them, of you desire (or not, if you simply made them up to give your character someone to command).

Note that if you are really ambitious, it's usually okay to have an NPC in someone else's department.... just clear it with them first. Never post for someone else's NPC, kill them off, etc.

You'll see that Eol Fefalas has created quite a few Tactical officers and crew, and he sometimes posts for them. However, several are just names stubbed in to fill up the roster. Both approaches are fine.

If you have questions about this, don't hesitate to ask.

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 21:34:16.

Topic: Zombies in Chicago: Chapter 2 Q&A
Subject: there ya go

One flashback post. More coming.

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 19:35:06.

Topic: Zombies in Chicago: Chapter 2
Subject: flashback one

The first one of the group to fall had been Emily.

Murph knew in his heart that, if he lived through all of this, if the world didn't completely come to an end, that memories of the girl would likely bother him for the rest of his life.

People often spoke about the death of a young person as a tragedy, how so much potential had been wasted... and in this kid's case, such sentiments were very accurate.

She'd been smart, been resourceful, and would have been useful, what with her actual medical training. Mac probably owed the girl his life, as far at that went.

But she'd just been so weak, so pale. The cough had gotten steadily worse back at O'Brien's until it was likely full pneumonia, and the meds they'd pilfered hadn't had time to take effect. When the screamers had rushed out of the grocery store, terror had gripped the girl as she'd left them all behind in a dead run.

That run had really taken it out of her, though. She had gone terribly pale, and her expression had changed to one of abject despair. Probably some guilt of her own at leaving Mac behind like that.

Those final moments on Cornelia, when the screams had come pouring down the street from both ends, Emily had given up. Murph could still hear her little moan of despair, could see in his mind's eye how she only took a couple of serious strides before stumbling and falling to the street.

He'd wanted to turn back for her, but there just wasn't time. Amber had needed him, wouldn't let anyone else touch her. It was all Father Ted could do to keep the wheelbarrow holding the semiconscious Mac rolling down the street, and there would be no way the evangelist could pull the wounded man out by himself in time to get him through that doorway before the screamers were on them.

And so, Tommy Murphy had left that girl to die... though deep down, he wondered if she hadn't simply chosen to go out that way.

The mechanic remembered the three barks of the .357 as the creatures washed over Emily. At the time, he'd sincerely hoped that the last shot had been a self target - it would have at least been easier that way - but the blood curdling screams that followed proved that the girl had made a legitimate final stand.

Murph found those screams returning when his eyes were closed. He honestly wondered if they would ever completely fade.

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 19:30:54.
Edited on 2012-10-18 at 19:32:14 by t_catt11

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Recruitment
Subject: woo!

We have an official roster entry for our new ship's counselor!

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 17:13:23.

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Q&A
Subject: ino you should know

As you all know, I am the GM of this game. I am playing the role of Captain Blair, but understand that he is as much a plot device as a player character.

Commander Avanti (NPC/possibly Alacrity) and Lieutenant MacTavish (Eol Fefalas) are the executive officer and second officer of the USS Discovery, respectively. This means that they have full authority to issue orders to anyone on the ship, if need be. There are other characters on board (the chief engineer and the ship's doctor are good examples) who technically outrank MacTavish, but in the absence of Blair or Avanti, he is still in charge - Blair, Avanti, and MacTavish are line officers. If you are unfamiliar with the concept, Google can be your friend (check "line officers" and "chain of command"). In the absence of the above, any officer may be given command of the bridge, and thus, the ship - but this is typically designated ("Lieutenant Ames, you have the bridge").

Somewhat coincidentally, Eol Fefalas (and, when if he decides to be active, Alacrity) make up what I refer to as my "command staff". While I am the only person who knows the full details of what will happen in our main plotline, I do share relevant details with the two of them, allowing them to act as co-GMs. If they see an area of the story lagging behind or wandering off into a tangent, they are fully within their rights to help get things back on track. This may result in one of them making a post or contacting you privately. Listen to them - they have the full authority of a GM in pretty much all matters.

Finally, my version of Trek is slightly more military than that often portrayed on the various TV shows. Unless a superior officer has given you leave to act more informally, assume that you should saulte, make formal reports, etc. Pay attention to the standard forms of address (which basically mimic those of Her Majesty's Navy):

Superior officers are always referred to as "sir" (unless you are using the proper rank address below). This is regardless of gender. Likewise, the term "mister" is pretty universal, regardless of gender.

All flag officers are always called "Admiral", regardless of grade. A commodore is called "Commodore".

The captain (or commanding officer) of a ship is always called "Captain", regardless of grade (such as when a commander is in charge of a smaller vessel).

A full commander is always called "Commander".

A lieutenant commander is called "Commander", unless a captain (or higher) elects to refer to him as "Mister". However, doing so is giving offense, as it indicates that the lieutenant commander is a junior officer.

Junior officers (ensign up to lieutenant) are referred to by their ranks or by "Mister" Lastname.

Cadets or warrant officers are referred to as "Mister" Lastname.

NCOs are addressed solely by their rate (the term rate is preffered over "rank" for enlisteds). It is appropriate to address a petty officer (of any grade) as "Petty Officer". A chief petty officer is referred to as "chief", a senior chief petty officer is referred to as "senior chief", and a master chief petty officer is referred to as "master chief".

In addition, note that chief petty officers are expected to assist in the training of junior commissoned officers, so while the lowliest ensign may technically outrank a chief, the ensign would be wise to pay proper respect!

Enlisteds are typically referred to as "crewman" or "yeoman", without the last name attached.

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 16:52:27.

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Q&A
Subject: useful links and info

Some links you may find useful!

Memory Alpha: the biggest Star Trek wiki on the internet. If you need to know canon trek info, check here.

RDI Trek Tools: our own in-house trek tools include the ship's roster and logbook, among other items. Use these to help keep things straight in our game.

Galaxy Class Specs: complete details of the Galaxy class vessel. Use this to figure out what deck a given department is located on, what types of probes the ship carries, what a given security rating is, and on and on. Special thanks to the "Star Trek: a Call to Duty" community for this superb recource!

Galaxy Class Crew Compliment: a full breakdown of all officers and enlisted crew on the ship, by department (Word Doc format).

Bridge layout: The current standard Galaxy Class bridge layout is as follows. In the center is Command area with three common seats, for the Captain, the Executive Officer to his right, and the Counselor to his left. Further out from these are two more seats that can be used by VIP or other non-stationed personnel.

At the front of the bridge is the Conn, starboard, and Operations, port, stations. Conn is the combination of Helm and Navigation, and Operations controls and monitors most vital ship functions. Operations is commonly in control of sensors aboard Galaxy Class starships.

Behind the Command area is the Tactical Rim. Here is the Primary and two Auxiliary Tactical stations. All tactical and security functions can be controlled and monitored from this point.

On the back wall from port to starboard are Engineering, Environment, Mission Operations, Science I, and Science II. These five stations are normally unmanned. The Chief Engineer is in Main Engineering, Environment & Mission Operations can be controlled at the Operations console, and Science I & Science II are the science department's presence on the Bridge. However, normally the Chief Science Officer [if the ship has one] is not a Bridge Officer. The position is a management and authority one, meant to control all the sub-departments which do their work in the various labs on board the ship. It is not uncommon however for some Chief Science Officers to conduct their business directly on the Bridge.

In the case of the Discovery, the captain has standing orders which require the presence of at least one science officer, one security officer, and one engineering officer on the bridge at all times in addition to the normal personnel.

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 16:48:52.
Edited on 2012-10-18 at 16:49:55 by t_catt11

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Q&A
Subject: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Q&A

This will be the Q&A thread for the moderated freeform game, Star Trek: the Cassius Incident.

We'll start with posting guidelines.

Posts in a Trek game need to be structured, else things quickly devolve into chaos. Therefore, I ask that you follow some guidelines.

First, start every post off with the date, location, and the time (in 24 hour, or military, format). We will be using "actual" dates insted of true stardates, as stardates are much more difficult for the casual player to keep up with. You will hear Captain Blair reference these in character, however. If anyone cares, our trek tools page include a stardate calculator.

Your post header should look something like this:

Stardate: 2368.07.10
USS Discovery, Main Engineering - 1615

Your text starts here...

The very nature of a Trek game - with everyone working independently - means that there will always be several storylines going at once. If we wait for one another, the game will almost immediately become so mired down that we wo't be able to continue. By giving our posts headers, we're able to back post, change scenes, etc, without too much confusion.

Please stay on the same mission day, except when backposting. In other words, if the rest of the ship is on day three, the CSO doesn't need to be sharing the discoveries he makes on day five. It's okay to go back and post a conversation you might have missed, but don't go ahead. As captain, my main function is to keep the story as organized as possible - I'll do this by regulating mission dates.

Be creative. Improvise. Add wrinkles to the plot. It's perfectly acceptible for the chief engineer to suddenly report a problem with the transporters just as we're about to visit a planet's surface. Maybe he'll need to fix it, or maybe the need for us to go is so pressing that we're forced to take shuttles.

If there's a problem on the table, don't be afraid to come up with solutions. If you have any doubts or questions, email me.

Please, by all means, create NPCs as needed. If you're the chief of security, you'll obviously need security personnel to flesh out your duty roster. We won't be having twenty people playing those roles, so you'll need to create them.

There's no need to go so far as to create a bio for most of them, but if you plan to use them in a recurring role, it wouldn't be a bad idea.

Nw, then... don't be that creative! Don't "God mode" - i.e., don't play your character in such a way that he solves every problem without help, knows the answer to every question, never has any trouble, etc. Share the spotlight - everyone deserves a chance to contribute on the missions. Don't control someone else's NPC wthout conferring with them first.

Never, ever control another person's main character. It's okay to make reasonable assumptions, but post them as such. This is bad:

Captain Blair nodded to Commander BillyBob. "So commander, what is your plan?" he asked. The commander paused for a moment, then spoke, "Captain, we should fire up the xyz in order to make the abc work correctly."

In this case, I'm posting the commander's intentions and speech for him. No, no no.


Captain Blair nodded to Commander BillyBob. "So, commander, what is your plan?" he asked.

OOC: assuming BillyBob shares the plan...

Blair nodded again. "Carry on," he stated.

I'm reacting to what I anticipate the answer to be, but giving myself edit room if it happens differently than I expect. I am not controlling the commander.

Format your posts.

This is a writing intensive game, and we all have different styles of posting. That's fine, but I want some standards, so that no one is confused.

Speech should always be included in quotes.

"How are you doing today, ensign?" Blair asked.

No bold, no other colors. Just quotes.

Internal throughts should be italicized.

Why does he keep blathering on? his players wondered.

Italics is done by adding the <i> tag before the italicized text, and adding the </i> tag after the italicized text.

Communictions via a communicator or other device is set aside with a special symbol.

Captain Blair keyed the intercom. "Blair to engineering."

=/\= Engineering, Thompson here. =/\=

"Thompson?" Noah asked. "Where is Commander Kennedy?"

There was a moment's hesitation before the reply.

=/\= Commander Kennedy is a little... preoccupied right now, sir. =/\=

Computer speech uses this same notation. It might seem cumbersome at first, but this makes the posts so much easier to read!

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 16:40:07.

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Recruitment
Subject: okay

This game officially has a name.

Star Trek: The Cassius Incident

I am about to post the Q&A thread. A lot of it will be material recycled from an old Trek Q&A, as most of the info is still applicable (posting guidelines, ship specs, etc).

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 16:34:18.

Topic: Zombies in Chicago: Chapter 2 Recruitment
Subject: hah

Good luck with that, Gruggster. He can have a lightsaber, but I'm betting the plastic blade would not be great against zombies...

We have a full six players already. I might allow one more (maybe two if there was a crazy reason to do so).

Expect at least one flashback/wrapup post today. I'll keep going with those until the last chapter is fully sewn up, then we'll proceed with new zombie goodness.

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 13:45:45.

Topic: Forum activity
Subject: Forum activity

Nice to see the forum activity picking up. As usual, a lot of it has to do with games actively recruiting (imagine that... games driving traffic on a gaming site).

Go to see!

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 13:39:39.

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Recruitment
Subject: cool

We are getting very close. We need an Engineer, but if we have to, we can NPC.

Honestly, the response has been way stronger than I have any right to hope for. We're all but filled up with half a day of recruitment in place.

I'll start a Q&A thread soon, where I'll put up posting format, extensive info on the Discovery, and sundry other topics.

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 03:42:25.

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Recruitment
Subject: cool

Loving all the interest. Just PM me details, folks.

Posted on 2012-10-18 at 01:20:11.

Topic: Zombies in Chicago: Chapter 2 Recruitment
Subject: yep

I just PMed him back to you. For some reason, I thought you decided to use him in another game?

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 21:05:01.

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Recruitment
Subject: kill you?

Nobody kills off another character in Trek.

I might smite you, however.

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 20:34:01.

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Recruitment
Subject: geek out

We may possibly geek out a bit for Trek.

Check out the game entry at our Trek tools area. Click on the roster to see some of the characters (and NPCs) aboard the ship.

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 19:33:50.

Topic: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Recruitment
Subject: Star Trek: The Cassius Incident Recruitment

After resisting this for over a year, I have finally given in and am relaunching Star Trek: Discovery.

Some familiar faces will be back, but there will be new ones, too... and that's where you come in.

This game will take place aboard the USS Discovery, NCC-71847, a Galaxy-class vessel set during the run of Star Trek: the Next Generation (i.e. pre Dominion War). Specifically, the game will begin in July of 2368.

Trek is moderated freeform gaming - I play the role of the captain, and I set the plot (with the help of one or two others). You guys interact with one another, create wrinkles in the plot, and come up with solutions to our problems.

There is some structure expected in the posts, but I'll get into that in the Q&A. It basically has to do with readability, we won't worry about that here.

Currently, here is where we stand:

Captain: myself
Executive Officer: NPC/possible cameos by Alacrity
Chief Tactical Officer: Eol Fefalas
Chief Science Officer: Reralae
Chief Medical Officer: SilentOne
Chief Operations Officer: Duncan74
Chief Engineer: Celeste
Helmsman: Tuned_out
Chief of Security: Odyson
Ship's Counselor: Teller of Ayrn

Junior engineering officer: Astrid

You don't have to be a Trek geek to play, but you do have to be committed to posting regularly (at least once per week, more is usually better), and you have to be willing to put some effort into both your character and posts. One line posts will not cut it here - expect three short paragraphs to be a typical minimum. Trek is all about character development and storytelling... share innner thoughts, motivations, etc. Be willing to play well with others.

If interested, please post here and/or PM me.

Edit: at this point, all of the department head roles are filled. If you'd like to play, let me know... you'll need to play a junior officer or enlisted.

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 19:23:17.
Edited on 2012-10-24 at 04:03:39 by t_catt11

Topic: Zombies in Chicago: Chapter 2 Recruitment
Subject: Zombies in Chicago: Chapter 2 Recruitment

This is the official recruitment thread for Zombies in Chicago: Chapter Two.

The world has ended due to zombie apocalypse some two-three weeks ago. Our first chapter covered a group of survivors in their struggle to understand and adapt.

Game specifics: I use a modified version of D20 modern to resolve any rules issues on this game.

Postiing specifics: you really should be able to post once per week. Please be able to produce at least two to three short paragraphs when you post. "My guy shoots at the zombie!" is not an acceptible post. The original ZiC was SUCH fun due largely to the quality character development. I expect more of the same here.

Characters: please submit regular people. No supermen, no mutant powers, no "smartest guy in the whole world", Batman need not apply. The fun of this game is to roleplay how a normal person would handle such a horrible event.

My zombies are fast and ruthless. Be warned.

Currently, here are our confirmed characters:

Tiamat will be reprising his role as Mac.
Grugg will be bringing in a new character.
Hammer is joining us for the first time.
Rerelae is joining us for the first time.
Vesper is joining us for the first time.
GW2Bionic_Beast is joining us for the first time.

I have one more player who I believe will be applying today, and Eol may be rejoining us at some point.

To apply, PM me your character concept. A little background and history. What does your character do for a living? What skills do they have? Do they know how to handle a firearm (and why?)?

This is not necessarly first come, first served.

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 18:29:43.
Edited on 2015-03-16 at 16:37:29 by t_catt11

Topic: Howdy again all!
Subject: woo!!!

Yeah, this ia a good thing.

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 18:20:31.
Edited on 2012-10-17 at 18:21:33 by t_catt11

Topic: My Creations
Subject: negative?

Anyone who has something negative to say about something so personal would be yanked from the site.

Thank you for sharing.

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 18:01:06.

Topic: Zombies in Chicago: Chapter 2 Q&A
Subject: Zombies in Chicago, Chapter 2 Q&A

This will be the official Q&A thread for the new Zombies in Chicago game.

First things first: I will make a series of posts to the game thread that will take the form of flashbacks in Murph's memory. These will serve to completely answer what happened to everyone at the end of chapter one.

Once these are all done, and everything is in order, I'll make a true into post and let you guys get going.

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 16:36:19.

Topic: Zombies in Chicago: Chapter 2
Subject: Zombies in Chicago: Chapter 2

A note found pinned to a bulletin board near the corner of Cornelia and Broadway:

30 (???) October 2014

My name is Thomas Micha... Tommy Murphy. I am was a mechanic at Dawson's Garage.

Most people call me Murph.

Most people.

I'm starting to think that there ain't many of those left.

Right now, all I've got giving me any hope that, somewhere out there, there are other people... normal people that remember being people, not like the screamers that most of them have seem to become... all I've got is a wounded bounty-hunter named Mac and that old guy from the TV church shows, Father Ted, and of the two of them, only Mac really calls me Murph... Father Ted usually just calls me "son" or, every now and again, Tom...

There used to be more of us when all of this started. Hell, how long ago was that, anyway? Hours? Days? I'm so tired I can't even begin to try and frame it... Seems like a lifetime ago that I got a burr in my butt and decided I wasn't gonna rot in the basement of O'Brian's... that I'd rather take my chances out here, trying to find someplace where all of THIS isn't happening. A place that was safe... maybe even with other people... people that didn't want to eat you, anyway... S#!t!...There were six of us not too long ago... Started out with me and those five poor souls that were damn fool enough to follow me out of Patty's basement...

There was Jake... Hammo, I think was his last name... some kind of pro soccer player or something, I guess... when he came into the pub the night the world went nuts, there were folks falling all over themselves to get an autograph or a picture... He took a bite from a screamer and buried a hatchet in Mac's chest an hour or so later... He ran off howling the last I saw of him... Can't say if he's dead or alive for sure... which ever... he ain't Jake Hammo, any more...

That's when we picked up Father Ted... when Jake geeked out on us... His yowling drew in another pack of screamers and, if it hadn't been for him and that elephant gun of his, I'm sure we'd have been done... He's a bible thumper... chapter and verse guy... but I'm glad the old guy's still kicking, anyway... he's managed to keep me sane some, I think...

Alaster... never did get that kid's last name... he was a carpenter... doing some work for Patty when s#!t went downhill... an alcoholic, too, I think... I don't know, the kid had issues all around I think... Wanted to kill him myself once or twice... Doesn't mean he deserved what he got... Makes me wonder if Jake wasn't the lucky one. There wasn't enough left of Alaster to have... turned (???)...

Makes you wonder if it's better to take a bite and live a while longer... become a screamer, yourself, maybe... or are you better off being eaten alive... it's over quicker I think... but better?

Emily thought so, I guess... She was a med student... not sure exactly how she ended up at O'Brian's that night but she did... and before we got out of the basement... maybe even before... she came down with pneumonia... we did end up raiding a pharmacy and getting her some meds that might've helped but... the screamers got her before the pneumonia... she just couldn't... keep up anymore... I think she let them get her but... I don't know...

I don't want to know, I guess...

Mac probably doesn't, either... I hope he was still high enough on pain killers not to remember much of that...

Mac... Adrian MacGregor... part time stunt man, part time bounty hunter... kind of a weird guy, I guess, but reliable enough up until Jake axed him. The wound was pretty bad and, to be honest, I thought it might be more merciful for him... hell, for all of us... if we'd left him behind... He's coming around pretty good, though, and that wound seems to be mending alright... I'm glad... I like this guy... Like I said... reliable....

That Renn-Faire Knight guy... Brian... Lord God, let that man have survived the onslaught he withstood for us... If there was ever a true knight in all the world, it was that man...

And then there was Amber...I think I was in love with Amber even before all this s#!t.... I was supposed to find her son... Josh.... then we were gonna find Mickey and we were all going to go to Chuck E Cheese... I... hope I can find Josh... and God, PLEASE, Mickey... I'll still take them to Chuck E. Cheese... Amber won't be going... I... had to... end it... for her... I...


We're still heading for the harbor, I think... Me, Mac, and Ted... Hoping to find a boat, maybe, and at least get far enough out on the lake where the screamers can't get to us... regroup a little...


I'm Tommy Murphy... Just a dumb mechanic from Dawson's Garage... one-time Sergeant in the U.S. Army... I was just a mechanic there, too... the only action I ever really saw was in Iraq way back during the Gulf War when our unit took a hit from insurgents... I ain't no hero... Just a survivor... for now......

If you're reading this, know that we're out here... and there's safety in numbers...

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 16:20:45.
Edited on 2012-10-17 at 16:22:47 by t_catt11

Topic: Zombies in Chicago Q&A
Subject: well...

...I don't know about eldritch horrors. There's a pseudoscientific explanation behind all of this.

Of course, it might have a supernatural tie in, so nevermind. Maybe eldritch horrors aren't out of place. What do I know?

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 15:50:45.

Topic: Zombies in Chicago Q&A
Subject: heh

One smite for a truly horrific pun.

Also: I'd love to have you. I'll be posting a recruitment thread shortly.

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 14:43:11.

Topic: Zombies in Chicago Q&A
Subject: ...and that's a wrap!

Since this is coming back as a new game, I have made an official end to the old game thread.

Want to find out what happened?

Stay tuned for the next chapter. Or better yet, be part of it.

Posted on 2012-10-17 at 04:12:02.

Topic: Zombies in Chicago
Subject: all good things...

October 26, 2014
Cornelia - 2:26 PM

The unearthly howls spawn echoes and replies from the surrounding neighborhood, leading to a bloodcurdling, unholy crescendo of screams from the damned. All orderly thought flees in the face of this terror, of this certain death - or fate even worse than it.

The wearied group of survivors makes for the open door in the middle of the block. There is no more discussion, there is no plan. That portal, uncertain though it may be, it the only possible hope for survival. Perhaps the door can be barred. Perhaps there is some other way out. Perhaps...

The survivors run for it as best they can, while more and more of the creatures take up the cry. A trickle of sprinting zombies gives way first to a tide, then a flood that no force could hope to withstand...


Posted on 2012-10-17 at 04:08:45.
Edited on 2012-10-17 at 04:09:54 by t_catt11


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