Star Trek Adventures "One Shot" Recruiting and Out-of-Game Thread

Howdy folks! I’m going to run a short “one-shot” style Star Trek Adventures (2d20 “Modiphius” rule set).

For simplicity, the setting will almost-certainly be TNG-DS9-VOY, because it’s the time frame I am most familiar with, but I can be convinced to run a TOS or LD-era if people would prefer (say so in your response here).

I am not familiar enough to run ENT, Picard, or Disco-era. Hope that’s okay!

Are you interested in playing? If so, yay! I have access to most of the rulebooks and sourcebooks except for the division specific ones. If you’d like to play, this will be a low-obligation game, with hopefully everyone having a chance to contribute once every day or so. The game will be combat-lite (combat is quite time intensive and difficult to do “proper” battles through a PBF/PBP system, although there will be some combat!).

Please respond here with the following information:

  1. The name of the character you’d like to play
  2. The top 2 divisions (Science, Command, Engineering, Security, Conn, Medical) you’d like to play in, and any division you definitely don’t want to play.
  3. Your preferred race (ST:A allows half-species, but for simplicity let’s try to stick to single-race characters here). You can pick anything you feel comfortable trying (Vulcan, Jem’Hadar, Changling, Human, Cardassian, Klingon, etc…). There are some race-specific benefits and costs, but fundamentally it’s going to come down to roleplaying. Play what you think will be fun!
  4. Your level of familiarity with the rules: None, Beginner, Moderate, or Comfortable
  5. Your level of familiarity with the ST:TNG(etc) era: None, Beginner, Moderate, Comfortable, “Um, actually, you will discover that The Chase was Intended as a precursor to the Dominion War and I utilize that fact in my twenty-seven part Riker - Kira Slashie Fanfic titled The Love of Fake Sideburns and Little Nose Ridges
  6. Lastly, do you want to be Command-level (“The Bridge Crew”) or Gets-Stuff-Done-level (“O’Brien”)?

I think from that we can walk through character creation and from there we can get our adventure started!

Let me know if you have any questions, and if somebody smarter than me can tag this into the “Play by Post” category as well, that would be appreciated!

May the Force Live Long and Misbehave!


If there is space (I know others may have first dibs) I would like to give this a go; if so

  1. Name: Watt Simpson
  2. The top 2 divisions (Security, Medical) but really whatever is available.
  3. Your preferred race - let’s stick with human
  4. Your level of familiarity with the rules: None - but I know a range of rpg systems
  5. Your level of familiarity with the ST:TNG(etc) era: Moderate
  6. Lastly, do you want to be Command-level (“The Bridge Crew”) or Gets-Stuff-Done-level (“O’Brien) - don’t mind, happy to go with whatever balances
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In an attempt to break my history of being a curse for play by post, I’m in. I’m on US central time zone.

  1. Rad Torlent
  2. Conn/Security
  3. Human
  4. None
  5. Moderate (I did read the Peter David TNG novels many years ago)
  6. I’m thinking “get stuff done” for a one-shot learning.
1 Like

I’m in!

  1. Zakaria Keli’i (universally known as “Kelly”).
  2. Engineering, Science. He’s a very technical boy. Definitely not Command.
  3. Human. (Native Hawaiian ancestry.)
  4. Call it “beginner” - I’ve read summaries of the rules (some of them by you) but I haven’t played the game.
  5. I don’t know it inside-out but I think I hit the main points. More than most people who aren’t Trek fans, less than most people who are. Moderate, I guess.
  6. Slight preference for get-stuff-done but will go with whatever.
1 Like

If there is room for one more…

  1. Pavi Zin
  2. Science, Command
  3. Bajoran
  4. Beginner - have done some 2d20 with solo (Starforged)
  5. Comfortable (TNG was always my favorite)
  6. Get stuff done, but open to anything
1 Like

I think we can probably safely get in 1 or 2 more players. I’ll give it another day or two.

@RossM Did you want in on this? Just checkin’!


Yep! It’s clearly a popular thing!

1 Like
  1. Tray Cee
  2. Science, Medical
  3. Human
  4. Quite familiar
  5. Insane. I even know why they’re called Jefferies Tubes
  6. Get stuff done

Well I mean everyone knows that right? :sweat_smile:


Possibly relevant addendum: I have played SFB more than a couple of times so I know I don’t know about the positron flywheel.


… I do not know what a positron flywheel is. But I’m sure if we reverse the polarity on it, we can sour the milk.

Okay, just some FYI about the setting: The ship you are all on is the USS Migizi, a Nova-class vessel (top of the line sensors and scanners, but a bit smaller than the Voyager, so not much in a fight). Your captain is Captain Illiana Atawhai (human female, Maori, built like a tank made sweet, sweet love to a bigger, meaner tank), recently promoted from a ship that was destroyed in the Dominion War and in the process of recovering and switching back to “Not At War” mentality. She’s looking forward to spending a few years away from any kind of fighting and cataloging as many boring nebulas and uninteresting comets as the ship’s sensors will let her.

The USS Migizi herself is a brand-new ship, and many of the engineering crew are still engaged in daily “Remove the protective film from all the glass surfaces” duty. The ship has a crew of 85 enlisted personnel and 15 officers, including:

Dr. Watt Simpson, Chief Medical Officer
Lt. Cmdr Rad Torlent, Beta-shift Security Officer
Lt. Cmdr Zakaria “Kelly” Keli’i, Engineer
Lt. Cmdr Pavi Zin, 3rd Officer
Lt. Tray Cee, Assistant Science Officer
(Maybe 1 more? We’ll give it until August 4th, just in case anyone else wants to join).

The ship has a luxurious lounge facility, nicknamed “The Battering Ram” due to its very-forward position on the ship, that is staffed by an experimental Emergency Holographic Bartender (“Please state the nature of the inebriation you require”). There are weekly Anbo-jyutsu matches and a monthly tournament which is well attended: currently Nurse Keh’leyr (daughter of Koloth) is reigning champion after taking the title from Ensign Nib (low center of gravity, those Ferenghi).

Just to get your creative juices churning a little before we jump into character creation: I’m going to ask each of you to describe what happened during your character’s attempt at the Kobayashi Maru, and what the nature of their Psych Test was. You don’t have to have passed the Kobayashi Maru (although obviously you’re allowed to if you can come up with a clever solution!), but you did have to pass the Psych Test.


At 2 meters and 95 kilos Lt Cmdr Rad Torlent can be best described as hulking. Brown skin, brown hair, brown eyes, and a nose that’s been broken almost flat. Rad’s family has been off planet for three generations on both branches. Dirt and grass don’t seem to bother him much but he talks about planetary gravity wells as unnatural somehow. Even when landed on a planet he describes it in warp navigational hazard terms rather than geologic or geographical terms. Growing up on starbases and ships across the quadrant he keeps almost no possessions collecting only bawdy drinking songs and scars. Rad works hard to turn every karaoke night at the battering ram into a singalong.

Rad holds two distinctions from his cadet class on the Kobayashi Maru scenario. The cadet to have his ship blown to component atoms by greatest weight of received fire. The cadet to get the best ratio of civilians transported off the Kobayashi Maru to civilians evacuated by shuttle craft. His approach was described as unflinchingly direct, myopically focused on reducing civilian casualties, and most resourceful at managing subsystems like transporters, environmental systems, and shuttle craft to achieve marginal gains while lacking finesse at tactical warp maneuver. He responded to the no-win scenario by narrowing focus to small achievable goals and attempting to turn the three dimensional chess match into a Jeffries tube knife fight.

Rad’s psych test involved being stranded alone in a shuttlecraft as systems slowly failed. His greatest fear having been determined to be tied to his reliance and assumptions about living in deep space. Until far into the test it seemed that as a born spacer he could not conceive that the technology keeping him alive in the vast dark emptiness could fail and he veered between bewildered confusion and detached terror at his worst moments.


“Planets are nasty, sticky things.”

When many people hear “native Hawaiian” they think of big scary rugby player types. “Zac Kelly” is the small scary wiry type. “Fits better in the crawlspaces.” He’s Earth born and raised but his hobby as a child was rewiring hovercar grav modules into suborbital launchers and nobody ever really doubted that he’d end up in some sort of engineering. His baggage allowance is data storage for finely-detailed 3D models (mostly early cars and aircraft); “low-poly” is a dirty word.

Kobayashi Maru: “On the one hand, eighty-seven survivors, On the other, 430 Starfleet personnel. If we retreat, we condemn those eighty-seven to death… but we bring records to Starfleet to prove that the Klingons are ignoring the emergency assistance provisions of the Organian treaty. If we continue, we may condemn five hundred and seventeen to death. Launch the log torpedo, divert all weapon power to reinforce shields, continue to invite the Klingons to assist in this rescue. Take us into the zone, I say again take us into the zone. Check my personal file space, there’s a shield strobing sequence I’ve been working on that should let us pull some of them out without being defenceless.”

Psych test: a technologically superior force destroying his home. Intended solution: dump the tech and go primitive, relying on each other. Not intended solution: capture and subvert one of the enemy drones.


In his uniform, Pavi Zin appears as any other Bajoran in Starfleet. He’s average height, average build, though fairly lean as he avidly trains in a variety of both dance and martial arts. Out of uniform, he stands out to those familiar with Bajoran culture from the conspicuous absence of a d’ja pagh. He grew up outside of the Cardassian occupation of Bajor in a secular colony established a few decades prior to the occupation as they sought to break away from what they saw as problematic social stratification on their homeworld, not to mention a rejection of the prophets as gods but rather manipulative entities stagnating the progress of Bajor. As a result, he tends to be more uncomfortable around native Bajorans than other species, is idealistic, and leans on his philosophical pursuits for guidance.

Lt. Cmdr Pavi’s approach to the Kobayashi Maru test was deemed unconventional and critiqued as somewhat convoluted in approach. At the first sign of Klingon aggression, he ordered the ships shuttles to be transported as far as possible to the border of the neutral zone before maneuvering the ship into position between the Kobayashi Maru and Klingons to draw fire. Pavi then ordered the transporter room to beam as many passengers as possible into the shuttles. However, the subsequent attempt to use the tractor beam to pull the Kobayashi Maru into an extended warp bubble for emergency tow failed as the Klingon assault tore through the Enterprise’s shield resulting in the destruction of both the federation and civilian ship. They managed to save 46 civilians in the shuttlecraft, but lost all crew (save medical personnel beamed to treat evacuees.

Pavi Zin’s psych test was a confrontation with the prophets and a confirmation of their godhood. A trial of sorts, where Zin found himself confronting an existential crisis defending his secularism. Ultimately, he held firm on his choices. Assessment noted that Lt. Cmdr Pavi has “a tendency to over-reliance on his own perspective” that needed to be challenged by his commanding officers.


Older, with mutton chop sideburns and a penchant for outdoor tweed when not in uniform, Dr Simpson is of the old school. And when i say old I mean some time in the early part of the 20th century in rural Scotland.

He has an affected burr and always has at hand a hip flask filled with medicinal spirits - the firier the better and this particular quest for fire is a considerable time sink for the good Doctor.

Eccentricities are one thing, but Dr Simpson is particularly effective at listening to people and working out what they need. This has made him a well loved physician and means that his ascent to Chief Medical Officer has been one of acclaim rather than professional assassination - a path that is very rare in any medical administration.

Kobayashi Maru was not Dr Simpson’s finest hour, judged to be too compassionate as he took on board all casualties both Starfleet and Klingon, compromising the effectiveness of the mission. But he does hold the record for happiness index increase amongst Klingon rescued combatants. So that is something (and indeed he secretly believes his solution was the right one).

Psych evaluation too was not easy, based on confronting his fondness for alcohol, self reflection, and listening before acting. Simpson thinks he should have failed the evaluation, but that he got through because the examiners liked him. There is a little bit of self doubt even now, whittled and rubbed to a hard invisible core by age and experience.

Simpson is a cool head in a crisis, will think before acting, and is very likable. But beneath the exterior fires of doubt wait to be rekindled


All I can think now…


Shorter and more slight than most of her colleagues Tray Cee has the pale complexion of most people born in Tycho City, on Luna. Her grey eyes and serious expression hints at some Vulcan ancestry at some point in the distant past, but in contrast her long dark hair is inexpertly tied in a long ponytail when she is on duty. She enjoys sewing and tapestry making and is considering adopting a pet.

Her Kobayashi Maru test was in her mind a complete success.

When faced with the prospect of flying her training ship into the neutral zone to attempt to rescue a ship with failing life support inside an unmapped gravitic minefield, and provoking an interstellar war, she determined the number of lives that could potentially be saved were far outstripped by those who would die at the consequence of her action.

She continued her regular patrol route.

Her psychological test was in the form of a medical scenario in which a badly injured Klingon wished to end his life. Although visibly distressed by the scenario Tray understood the learning point being made; that regardless of outcome, sometimes it’s impossible to ‘Do no harm’.


Cool, and that’s everyone!

We should start character creation, and this is a good news, bad news sorta deal:
Good news! There is a very robust character creation website that helps make ST:A characters and does a great deal of hand-holding to help you out!

Bad news! It’s hard to explain nuances and uncertainty through the format of play-by-post, but I will do my best.

First things first: if you don’t want to make a character at all, that’s fine! Let me know and I’m happy to whip one up for you based on the information you’ve provided in the blurbs above (great job, everyone!).

Second things second, the website is:

Start by selecting “Characters and Starships”… ooh, before we go any further, note that you cannot use the back button to revert any mistakes you’ve made. You have to use the buttons on the left side of the screen. Important.

Okay, now select the following books: Core, Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, and then scroll down and select “TNG Era.”

You are making “Starfleet Personnel,” so select that.

Click “Select species,” and then pick the species you said you want to play. It will list a few perks for your species.

The next screen gives a little bit of history of your selected species, and a list of the 6 Attributes in the game. Since none of you are super familiar with the rules, let’s run through those Attributes now.

The six stats that are intrinsic to all characters (and most NPCs and many objects) are:
Control (your fine motor control, your mental control, your ability to maintain your cool)
Daring (your bravery, courage, mental fortitude, your drive to get things done)
Fitness (health, combat ability, strength, agility, your training in Ferenghi-fu)
Insight (flashes of inspiration, your ability to make sense of chaos, your instincts)
Presence (your charisma, command ability, your ability to evoke fear or loathing or trust)
Reason (logic, deduction, training, education)

It is very important to note that this attributes are vague by design. You should have a sort of idea of what “Daring” means, but there isn’t a chart anywhere that says “This specific attribute is used for this specific thing.” Instead, much of ST:A is figuring out what your character is good at, and how they can leverage that attribute (and skill, we’ll get to those) to get the thing done.

For example, Dr. Simpson has had a few of his medicinal fluids, and has spotted an attractive Cardassian across the bar. He decides that it is in Starfleet’s best interests to open hailing frequencies and see if he can find the shield frequencies that will expose the most sensitive areas. For science, of course.
DJCT might say “Okay, I’m going to use my Presence (plus a skill) in order to flirt with the Cardassian.” But he might just as well say “I think Simpson has flirted with many a-biped before, and therefore he’s going to use Reason (plus a skill) to approach this situation.” Or he might say “The alcohol has had its intended purpose, and therefore Simpson is using his Daring (plus a skill) to approach this potentially hostile, potentially jazz-music-playing situation.”

The point of most of the skills is that they can be interpreted broadly.
Now, there are a few instances of very specific Attribute + Stat combinations: flying a shuttle is almost always Control + Conn. Firing a hand phaser is Control + Security, and landing a doublehanded Kirk-Chop to the back of an enemy is Fitness + Security. But even then if you want to try and justify a different skill set (“I’m going to modulate the phaser to fire bright, blinding flashes of light instead of stun, so I’m going to use Insight plus Science because I think our enemies are weak to bright light!”), that’s okay.

Okay. All that to say that don’t worry too much if you’re a little low in one or two or, heck, five stats. Part of the joy of the game is thinking like A Starfleet™, and that involves figuring out what these Attributes mean to you and your character.

Right! Pick a few to buff.

Next, you may have a Trait or not (humans don’t), and then you will select a Talent. Your first! Huzzah! You will end up selecting… I think 2-4 Talents before we’re done.
Don’t check the “allow cross species talents” (unless you have a very good reason, and if you do, feel free to do so and let me know your reason), and then select a Talent.

The Talents are all described pretty thoroughly on this screen. As a word of advice, don’t focus too much on the combat ones (although our Security crew might want to pick one). There won’t be too much fighting in this adventure… there may be some, but there is a perfectly acceptable way to get through the entire adventure without firing a shot, lobbing a rock at a lizard, or firing a full spread of photon torpedoes.

Crap, I gotta get to work. Okay, well, hopefully that gives you enough to get started. Next you’ll click “Environment” at the bottom, and you can either wait for me to get back from work tonight (in about 9 hours), or you can take a stab at character creation on your own and fire me off questions as they come up.

I’ll talk about Skills next time, but the Cole’s Notes are that they are very much like the Attributes: broad and ambiguous by design.


Huh. Got all the way through, but the only way to export was via an http link from this https site, which Firefox (rightly) flagged as a security risk. Hey ho. But I was able to snabble it as plain text.

Zakaria Keli'i

UPBRINGING Science and Technology(A)
CAREER Experienced Officer



The fleet above the officer
Credit where it’s due
If you can’t beat them, rewire them

Warp Field Dynamics
Electro-Plasma Power Systems
Quantum Mechanics
Galactic Politics

Spirit of Discovery
Collaboration: Engineering
A Little More Power
I Know My Ship

Phaser type -1

Transporter Accident
Negotiate a Treaty


Think I got this right but let me know any needful changes.

Rad Torlent

Career events:
Special Commendation
Recruited by Starfleet Intelligence