Rules

(This manual written below is subject to change either periodically or eventually.)

Manual Introduction & Credits
Welcome to the revised 2014 edition of the Galactic Alliance Fleet Manual. This manual has been produced as a guide for all of the members of the Galactic Alliance Fleet from experienced command staff to those still relatively new to the group.

Since the original 2000 version; Almost all of the original sections have been rewritten, and also many of the common questions answered. Also other common gaps in our player's knowledge have been identified over the course of the last decade and have since been included. As such these pages now contains pretty much everything you need to know to play within Galactic Alliance Fleet and attempts to cover a wide range of subjects including group structure, the rules and even specific subjects such as how to request a transfer etc.

Whilst we cannot expect anyone to fully memorize every detail in this manual we do advise that you read the rules and also that you print off a hard copy of this manual for future reference.

Regards,
The Galactic Alliance Fleet Coalition

The Galactic Alliance Fleet is not the work of one person. Many people over the years have contributed greatly to the continued success and development of the Galactic Alliance Fleet. As such we give our thanks to these people..

OVERALL GROUP CONCEPT
Holly Parker, Katie Potts, Michael McGinnis

GAF CONCEPT & DESIGN
Holly Parker, Katie Potts, Michael McGinnis

NOVA SITE MAINTAINENCE
Trev Taylor, Holly Parker, Katie Potts, Michael McGinnis

GAF MANUAL ORIGINAL VERSION
Holly Parker, Katie Potts, Michael McGinnis

REVISED EDITION (2014)
Holly Parker, Katie Potts, Michael McGinnis

THE FUTURE OF GALACTIC ALLIANCE FLEET
All of our Members, past and present.

COPYRIGHT INFORMATION
This manual has been produced by Holly Parker, Katie Potts and Michael McGinnis for the Galactic Alliance Fleet RPG Group and its members. Any unauthorized copying or distribution of this manual or part thereof by any person, group or organization is illegal under international copyright law. Any person, group or organization found doing so will be reported to the relevant authorities.

DISCLAIMER: Galactic Alliance Fleet and all associated sites are non-profit making, Non-commercial ventures and not intended to infringe on any copyright, whether legally stated or artistic. Star Trek ®, Star Trek: The Next Generation ®, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine ®, Star Trek: Voyager ® and Star Trek: Enterprise ® are trademarks of PARAMOUNT PICTURES as registered in the United States Trademark & Patent Office.

Table of Contents
1.0 - Structure
1.1 - The GAF Coalition
1.2 - Training Department
1.3 - The Galactic Alliance Fleet
1.4 - Starfleet Marine Corps
1.5 - Wing Command Division

2.0 Resources
2.1 - Community News
2.2 - Trek News
2.3 - Forums
2.4 - Trek-Trivia
2.5 - Downloads
2.6 - Galactic Alliance Fleet Database
2.7 - Links

3.0 - Rules and Regulations
3.1 - Code of Conduct
3.2 - Ship Rules
3.3 - Breaking the rules

4.0 - Simming Style
4.1 – Introduction to Nova
4.2 - Formatting
4.3 - Example Sim
4.4 - Speaking for Others
4.5 - Promotions
4.6 - Ladder to Success
4.7 - Advanced Simming

5.0 - Your Character
5.1 - First Thoughts
5.2 - Writing your Biography
5.3 - Things to Remember

6.0 - Crew Positions

7.0 - Stardates, Military Time and Addressing Officers
7.1 - Stardates
7.2 - Military Time
7.3 - Addressing Officers

8.0 - Frequently Asked Questions

1.0- Group Structure

1.1 - Galactic Alliance Fleet Coalition: The Galactic Alliance Fleet RPG Group was setup in May 2000 with several strong ideals, which form the basis of Galactic Alliance Fleet today. The first and foremost was that no one person would be solely in control, as such the group is governed by a group known as the Galactic Alliance Fleet Coalition. The Coalition currently consists of all of Galactic Alliance Fleet's Commanding Officers and Department Heads.

All of the issues, proposals and policies that will affect the Galactic Alliance Fleet RPG Group are discussed and decided within this one group. To help organize discussions and keep a record of votes and agendas one person is required to act as the chairperson. As such all commanding officers and department heads are directly answerable to the Coalition.

Raising an Issue: If you wish to raise an issue with the Coalition, you first port of call is your commanding officer as they have a duty to represent the views of his/her crew. It may be that your issue has been raised and decided on before in which case your Captain will let you know. However if you wish, your comments can be sent direct to the Coalition by emailing pirateavalona31@hotmail.com.

1.2 - Training Department
Every member in Galactic Alliance Fleet has at some time or another undertaken or been involved with the training department. The department itself comes under the overall control of the Head of Training who is, in turn, directly answerable to the Senate. He/she is responsible for keeping the Training Department running smoothly and coordinating the individuals involved within, such as the Applications Officer, the Postings officer and Training officers.

Training missions occur regularly on one of the training holodecks on a holographically generated ship, the USS Firestorm (listed on the fleet's Personnel page). During this mission, new members are trained in the ways of simming from basic formatting to hints and tips on improving their simming style. At the end of the one week course those new members who are up to the standard are ready to choose a permanent assignment within the Galactic Alliance Fleet. The training program is a comprehensive simming course, and so no previous role playing experience is required to join our group.

1.3 - Fleet
The current Galactic Alliance Fleet consists of all the Ships, Bases and Stations of Galactic Alliance Fleet. Every one of these groups is an active role playing group with an active crew and each group will have a commanding officer at the head of that group.
All Fleet Personnel will start at the rank of ensign and work their way up. A full list is included below:

Captain
Commander
Lt. Commander
Lieutenant
Lieutenant Junior Grade
Ensign
Cadet- Only in Training

Originally the Galactic Alliance Fleet consisted only of Starfleet Naval Vessels however over time several additional sections of Starfleet have appeared in Galactic Alliance Fleet.

1.4 - SFMC Marines
The Galactic Alliance Fleet Marines were formed in May 2000 and instead of the naval Starfleet template uses an Army template for her structure and ranking system. They currently occupy only a few vessels in the fleet. The Marines can be part of an existing Fleet Vessel as a detachment or even form their own dedicated group. The Marines have their own equipment, terms and simming style and as such are a fascinating group to play within.

Marine Personnel will start at the rank of Second Lieutenant and work their way up. A full list is included below:

Colonel
Lt. Colonel
Major
Captain
First Lieutenant
Second Lieutenant
Cadet- Only in Training

1.5 - Wing Command Division
The Wing Command Division was formed in May 2000 and is vastly different as it uses an air force template for the structure and ranking system. They currently only occupy one vessel in the fleet however they can be part of an existing Fleet Vessel as a detachment under the command of the current Commanding Officer or even form their own dedicated group.

Group Leader
Wing Commander
Squadron Leader
Flight Lieutenant
Pilot 1st Class
Pilot 2nd Class
Cadet- Only in Training

Note: Please see the respective websites for more detailed descriptions on all of the current Fleet vessels, SFMC and WCD.

2.0 Resources
Galactic Alliance Fleet believes that in order to create an online community you need to provide your members with enough resources, games, information and articles to keep all of our members active and interested to ensure that they keep coming back again to our website. As such we have produced the following resources for the use of our members:

2.1 - Community News: The community news section provides our members with regularly updated information on what is happening within the Coalition and the group as a whole plus any major site updates, command promotions and anything else that is of interest.

2.2 – Nova News: Nova News is aimed at providing our members with an up-to-date insight into the current happenings in Trek, the technology behind Star Trek and other useful articles to our members and news pertaining to the functionality of the Coalition.
If you would like to help, and think you can offer a unique insight into Star Trek (as well as having your name in print) then please email pirateavalona31@hotmail.com.
2.3 – Non sim forum categories: Galactic Alliance Fleet Coalition Forums provides a large area to discuss General Star Trek, Treknology, Group Issues and even post your personal logs and sim and interact with other members of the fleet in 'Riva's Bar' set on board Outpost Indian Head.

3.0 Rules & Regulations
Galactic Alliance Fleet, as with all organisations need some rules that everyone has to follow in order to keep everything running smoothly and everyone within it happy and content. We don’t believe in creating rules for rules sake or to make the rules we do have over complicated and confusing. Instead we have tried to keep them to a bare minimum and as simple as possible so not to ruin or restrict your enjoyment of the whole simming experience.

3.1 - Code of Conduct: We believe that our members should adhere to a brief set of rules and regulations which in essence cover general politeness as well as interactions between crewmembers whether on the ship category section, ooc categories, by private email or by any other means. As such this Code of Conduct applies to every member of Galactic Alliance Fleet, irrespective of their individual rank or status within the group.
1) Galactic Alliance Fleet believes in providing a quality role-playing experience for all its members no matter what race, colour, religion, sexuality or other minority group our members may come from. No discriminatory behaviour will be tolerated from any member under any circumstance.

2) Galactic Alliance Fleet is open to anyone and as such we may receive applications from people as young as 13 years old. However the majority of our members are over 18, as such we encourage all of our members to write responsibly.

3) Galactic Alliance Fleet is not affiliated with any other RPG groups. As such members should not recruit for other RPG groups within Galactic Alliance Fleet.

4) Members should not blatantly advertise any commercial products, services or websites, especially those of a sexual or an illegal nature.

5) Do not forward on any circulating emails, chain letters, virus warnings, hoaxes or similar emails to any of our categories. If in doubt contact your commanding officer for advice.

In general all our members should conduct themselves in a polite and fair way befitting of their position in and out of the simming environment. As a general guideline a common sense approach of 'treating others like you would wish to be treated yourself' should avoid almost all disputes.

3.2 - Ship Rules
All of the commanding officers in Galactic Alliance Fleet put a huge amount of work and personal time into making the Galactic Alliance Fleet RPG group into what it is today as well as ensuring their own individual ships keep running smoothly and any disputes are solved quickly and without too much angst. A commanding officer's life is often a difficult one with many OOC's messages being sent, trying to keep a cool and fair head and keeping up to speed on necessary admin. As such all we ask is that all our members try and treat their commanding officer with the kindness and respect they deserve, after all if they weren't putting their personal time into Galactic Alliance Fleet we all would not be able to take part in the simming experience.

In addition to the general Code of Conduct there are some specific rules that you should adhere to onboard ship, these are termed Ship Rules and are as follows:

1) Complaint Procedure
From time to time your Captain may make decisions in-character and out-of-character (OOC) that you do not agree with. Similarly another officer may send emails to you in-character and out-of-character (OOC) that you do not agree with, cast your character wrongly or that you even find offensive.

If this is the case then the correct procedure is to use Nova to private message your commanding officer via their profile and voice your complaint to them direct. Make sure that your message is as polite as possible. Also by taking the time to explaining your position fully, you will find that the complaint can be dealt with quicker and with less angst on all sides.

Please DO NOT send the complaint to the category or to the individual concerned (if different from your commanding officer). Remember your commanding officer has a duty to keep his ship running smoothly and that means dealing with the situation fairly.
In some cases where for whatever reason you really do feel that you cannot complain to your commanding officer you can send your complain to the senate by emailing pirateavalona31@hotmail.com. In these cases the chairperson will see that the situation is dealt with fairly.

2) If you are Away! Sometimes our members find that they cannot sim for a period of time, this could be because of minor technical problems, a holiday abroad or a business trip etc.

However all we ask is that if you find yourself unable to SIM for any period of time longer than 7 days that you contact your commanding officer via private message through the Nova site and inform them of the situation and the date you expect to be back. Your commanding officer will almost certainly understand and will try and work the plot around you.

However if you don't let them know the entire plot could come to a grinding halt as it could quite feasibly be resting solely on your reply. Also if you do disappear without informing your commanding officer you run the risk of losing your position onboard the ship and indeed the Galactic Alliance Fleet as a whole.

3.3 - Breaking the Rules: Every once in a while a member will come at least close to breaking one, or a couple of these rules. All these incidents are judged on their own individual merits and your commanding officer will take up most problems privately via the Nova site with an informal warning based upon a 'three strikes and you’re out' rule.
However depending on the severity of the act and similarly if a member does not take heed within three warnings from their commanding officer and carries on regardless, then there are three possible outcomes to your disciplining, these are as follows:

1) Moderation of all Posts/Sims.
2) Expulsion with a view of re-admittance and re-training.
3) Expulsion with no review and no chance of being re-admitted.

These are only used in extreme circumstances, whereby any other form of disciplining has not proven effective and are usually administered by your commanding officer directly. However if you believe you have been treated unfairly, you may wish to appeal to the senate in which case it will be picked up by the Chairperson and dealt with in a fair and just way based upon individual circumstances.

These Rules and Regulations have been brought into effect so that the Galactic Alliance Fleet RPG Group and the rest of the members do not suffer from one person's bad judgment or behavior in and out of character.

4.0 Simming & Simming Style
By the time you read this manual you should have completed your training mission which teaches you all the basics of simming. Indeed you should already be aware of most of the information in this section and as such this is intended as a reminder for current members.

4.1 - Introduction to the Nova
Much like your training mission when you are posted to a Ship/Station or Base you will be added to a category, which allows all members of your posting to view your posts. The Galactic Alliance Fleet group is hosted by Nova (http://www.gaf.starfleetuk.org).

All of the members of the crew will need to register with the forum in order to actively participate, so all you have to do is post one sim to the main site and no one within your group will miss it.

All the members that are signed up to the main site will then receive your SIM. The best part of using the Nova site is that you can edit your own posts once saved, so that if you realise you’ve missed a word in a sentence of your formatting isn’t correct you can go back and fix it.

4.2 - Simming Format
Any one SIM is made up of several different types of symbols and abbreviations which have been carefully designed to make the Sims easier and quicker to read and to reduce the amount of confusion that may arise for all the members in the group. Below is a list of the ones most used

Location Note At the very beginning of your SIM you should place (( )) at the top stating your characters current location either on ship or wherever you may be.
E.G. ((Sickbay)), Or insert it in the "Location" area of the top of the message to be composed.

Speech The first major part that a sim is made up from is your character's dialogue or speech, which while in sim are shown by writing your LAST name before a colon and contained within ** at each end of your name to make your name bold, then simply writing your speech.

E.G.: White: Sir, I am not detecting anything unusual on sensors

Actions Actions are the second most important part that makes up a SIM, they convey to the reader what your character is doing and how he/she is doing it. By also describing an object you are using or the surroundings that you find yourself in, you can build up an image in your mind of where you are and give your post much more feeling. Actions are shown in SIM by a double colon :: placed at the beginning and end of the action.

E.G. ::I placed the Phaser on my belt and shuffled quickly down the darkened corridor, the emergency lights still flickering::

Thought Whilst not one that is commonly used a lot in sim, thought can be a very good when you want your Character to think to their selves when they would not say it out loud. This is shown by placing < > around the speech.

E.G. < Here we go again! >

Telepathy Used the least commonly in sim telepathy is a useful tool to the simmer, however not every player character has the ability to use this in sim. It is shown by putting << >> around the speech and it means that a player is talking telepathically.
Note: - If you character is not a Telepath they can only talk using their minds if a telepath starts the conversation.

E.G. <<>>

White would then most likely reply with

<>

In situations where telepathy is used extensively, try and include the name of the character that your character is talking to. This obviously reduces the amount of confusion caused.

Traditionally telepaths are only members of the following species: Aenar, Betazoid, Botha, Brenari, Cairn, Deltan, Enaran, Halanan, Haliian, Kzinti, Kazarite, Lethean, Lumerian, Mari, Medusan, Melkotian, Napean, Ocampa, Reman, Species 8472, Talosian, Thasian, Trill (symbiont guardians), Ullian, Vulcan and Wraith.

Comm. Badges
Another well used tool in the Star trek universe is the comm badge a kind of 24th century long distance radio or mobile phone, In a sim this is given its own set of symbols to help show when a player is using their comm. Badge to make a 'long distance call.

Generally a player will first place the action of pressing it and then place their speech in =/\=, which looks very much like a comm badge. To put this symbol into your Sim first place an Equals sign, forward slash, backward Slash and lastly an Equals sign. = / \ = This is what it looks like broken down.

E.G. ::White presses his Comm. Badge:: White: =/\= White to Patrick =/\=

Patrick would then respond by placing his speech in the Symbols.

Patrick: =/\= Patrick here =/\=

Note: - Place the Symbol at the end to show the sentence is finished.
SIM Notes Sometimes in a SIM there may be a need to make an out of character statement within a sentence or action that will not affect your characters speech or action, it is just merely a note to the other players. This is done by placing (ooc: ) around the note.

E.G. ::White walked down the corridor to the bridge and pressed the Captains door bell (ooc: Couldn't remember if this was what I was supposed to do) and stood awaiting his reply::

Out Of Character
You will no doubt see the term OOC used a lot in the sims, it actually stands for ‘Out Of Character’ and is mostly used at the top or bottom of Sims if required.

E.G. OOC: Yippee!! my Exams have finished!!!

Sometimes OOC messages will be sent which are not attached to a sim. Although in some cases it is completely necessary, it is however not encouraged by the Galactic Alliance Fleet RPG Group as it can have a detrimental effect on simming, turning the Nova into nothing more than a glorified OOC chat room. Ideally, you should use the OOC Conversation category or private message the Nova user you with to speak with out of character.

4.3 - Example SIM: Below is an example of the above symbols and of a minimum content and length of sim. As you progress through your career you will find that this will be superceded as you write more, and take more time to describe your environment and build your character.

((Bridge - USS Enterprise))

::The emergency lighting kicked in and the Captain began to give orders. I look down to the Science console and start to try and scan for life forms::



::The primary sensors were offline, no doubt due to the amount of damage we had sustained, I instinctively try the backup sensors, hopefully they hadn't sustained as much damage::

::The computer beeps in recognition, the secondary sensors were quite damaged, but were still functioning::

Frazer: Captain, I have scanned the planet, there appears to be no life signs on the planet, but I am picking up several large structures. Sir, what are your orders?

Captain: ???

OOC: Geez, this is fun!!!

Note: There are also abbreviations for the different posts on the ship. You will find these on the crew positions section of this manual together with their respective job descriptions.

4.4 - Speaking for Others: Each Simmer in the group has spent a great deal of time thinking out their character, how their character speaks, behaves and thinks. As simmers we learn about other player characters by reading each other’s sims and biographies.

In Galactic Alliance Fleet there is a general rule that we have to limit the amount we speak for each other’s characters, this is because until you know another simmer's character very well, you don’t know how that simmer would like their character to react to a particular situation.

For example if you were to speak for Ensign Fraser you might have him say this in one of your Sims...

Crewman: Ensign Fraser, do you fancy a drink of beer, my father brewed it a couple of months ago?

Frazer: Sure thing, that sounds swell buddy.

Now, that might not be how Fraser's player would want him to speak, and perhaps Frazer hates beer, so obviously he wouldn't drink it.

This is a very basic example but it emphasizes that until you know the other players characters inside out and well enough to be able to speak for each other well, you have to limit speaking for them.

Now on the other side of the coin, if you have to stop your sim every time you want another character to speak, it will get very tiresome and the sims will be very short and dull.

Generally if you need to speak a lot for another character, or you are unsure how their character would react to something, then leave a place in the sim for that player to comment e.g.

Crewman: Cadet Frazer, do you fancy coming for a quick game of holoball in the holodeck?

Frazer: (Please Respond) or ???

An alternative is to send a copy of your sim to that player first and await their response; however this can leave you waiting and is not recommended during training.
The basic rule for speaking for other simmers characters is to try and be considerate, think how you would feel if someone else spoke that much for you. As you get to know each other you will find yourselves speaking more and more for each other, and that is fine, as long as all the people concerned are happy with that.

Speaking for your Commanding Officer (CO)
Major problems start when you begin speaking for your CO. This is a very fine line to judge, and everyone in Galactic Alliance Fleet has stepped over it at one time or another, me included.

It is normally acceptable to have your CO speak for minor things, things that it is completely obvious they would accept. However the only people who can authorize an away team are a Captain, First officer or Training Instructor, by that I mean written by us and in our own Sims. If you are at all unsure, then leave an opening.

Basically it is a combination of common sense and consideration. If you are at all unsure about anything at all, do not hesitate to contact your CO or Instructor and ask for their advice, or simply leave an opening for them as described above.

Using other Players Characters
The previous information on speaking for others is generally only valid for conversations. Let’s say three of you have been ordered to take a shuttle and fly out to do something. Two of you arrive in the shuttlebay and are waiting for the third person, who doesn't sim. This is obviously a pain, but there are two ways around this:

1) If the character does not sim in three days, you are allowed to speak a little for him/her, just enough to get the plot rolling again.
2) You can move the plot forward a little by including the character but not speaking for them. For example:

((Shuttlebay 1))

::Frazer and Grogan had been waiting for a couple of minutes, when the third officer appeared. All three officers then boarded the shuttle and launched as they had been ordered.::

As you can see, you haven't spoken for the third officer, just said that they turned up, which they were supposed to do anyway. However you should always give the other player a chance to give their input to the plot. Maybe for some reason the third officer wanted to disobey orders and not take part in the mission - by simming the above you have taken this opportunity from the player.

Generally, use your common sense, if someone hasn't responded in a couple of days then move the plot on, but don’t repeatedly do that, as you may be taking fun away from others. Just try to treat other people how you would like to be treated yourself and you should be fine. As you become more familiar with a crew, you all get to know each other’s characters better and how they would respond anyway.

4.5 - Promotions
Promotions on a ship are your Captains way of telling you that you are doing well and have reached the next stage of advancement in the quality of your Sims and indeed your own experience. If you think that you are not advancing with your Sims then please discuss it with your Captain and they will be more than happy to give their reasons for it and to point you in the right direction. Because of the nature of humanity as a whole, some people will inevitably advance faster than others. If you believe are advancing slower than others on your ship, please do not take it to heart and think that you are not doing well. There will always be a reason why you are not getting the promotions, just discuss it politely with your captain and they will try to help you through and up to the next level.

Note: It is not polite or correct sim etiquette to request promotions for yourself or others, please see the Rules and Regulations Section of this manual for details.
Ranks When first starting in Galactic Alliance Fleet you will begin with the rank of Cadet. Once you have passed training you will automatically be promoted to the rank of Ensign and be posted on board a ship, station or base of your choice. After that there are many other ranks through which you can work your way through.
Below is a list of the Rank ladder. (SFMC and WCD ranks are not listed here for clarity only).

Cadet – Trainee
Ensign
Lieutenant Junior Grade
Lieutenant
Lieutenant Commander
Commander
Captain

Once you reach the rank of Lieutenant Commander and are ready to be promoted to the rank of Commander you will be enlisted to take the Commanders Exam by your Captain. This exam sees you being trained and subsequently tested to command a training mission.

To become a Captain you must first be put forward for the position by your current Commanding Officer. The Galactic Alliance Fleet Senate is responsible for deciding who will become the next Commanding Officer based upon current training rates and fleet vacancies. All new Commanding Officers will be assessed by one or two senior Captains based upon their Sims on a three month trial to see how they adapt to the position. Provided they pass this test they are automatically promoted to the rank of Captain.

4.6 - Ladder to Success
All promotions are at the discretion of your Commanding Officer and are based upon your performance, your Sims and your overall experience playing the game. As such the below is only a brief indication of what is required to earn each rank and should not be used as ammunition against your Commanding Officer under any circumstances.
Note: It is not polite or correct sim etiquette to request promotions for yourself or others, please see the Rules and Regulations Section of this manual for details.

Cadet to Ensign
To be promoted from Cadet to Ensign you will need to show your skills in basic plotline enhancement and show you are able to follow orders of your superior officers as well as keep up to speed with the plot. During the training mission try and SIM regularly and at least three or four times so as not to hold up the training.

Ensign to Lieutenant Junior Grade
To be promoted to from Ensign to Lt Jg. you will need to show your Captain or Commanding Officer that you can SIM consistently and that you can forward the plot and follow the orders of your superior officers.

Lieutenant Junior Grade to Lieutenant
To gain the promotion to Full Lieutenant you must be able to show your Captain or Commanding Officer that you can 'push' the missions forward including Plot Twists and involving other crew members into your Sims. Also show that you can SIM consistently, with the same level of commitment.

Lieutenant to Lieutenant Commander
To gain this promotion you must show that you can cope with bringing the plot forward, involving others in your plots and leaving them openings to advance with the plot themselves. As with the above, Simming well and consistently.

Lieutenant Commander to Commander
Before becoming a Commander you must first be put forward for a practical test, which will involve taking your own training mission and showing your command skills through teaching others to play the game. What the reviewers will be looking for is the ability to lead your crew (in this case Cadets) and bring along plot lines so that all crew members have a chance of getting involved. The main question your Commanding Officer will be asking themselves is:

'Can a Captain trust this person with their ship, if away?'

Provided you pass the practical test you will be promoted to the rank of Commander and will be required to take Training Missions at regular intervals thereafter.

Commander to Captain
People will be nominated by their current Captain for the rank of Captain. The Galactic Alliance Fleet Senate are responsible for selecting new Commanding Officers based upon current training pass rates and fleet vacancies. If agreed then a ship will be commissioned and your 3 month Captaincy Exam will begin, after which you will be promoted to the rank of Captain.

4.7 - Advanced Simming
Nova simming is a game of participation, and as such a player really must be involved to enjoy it the most. None of the plots have a pre-set beginning, middle and end and what the crew puts into the story by way of their Sims really does make a difference and improves the experience as a whole. This section is aimed at trying to point players in the right direction to improve their simming and therefore their own enjoyment of the game as a whole.

Description
The first main fault in simmers posts is that not enough care is taken when describing their surroundings, describing their characters feelings and reactions to the situations you will be confronted with during your simming career. Where description is concerned, more is certainly better as it serves to transfer the scene and image in your head to the minds of the other players, enabling them to visualize what is happening and improving their enjoyment of the game.

Developing the Plot
Another common mistake is for crew members not to push forward their ideas and to rely on the ideas of others, especially the Captain. The Captain doesn't have a set plot idea, he or she may have an idea, but it is you, the crew, that makes the plot! The Captain just manages it. If you do have an idea and it can fit into the plot and the basic direction it seems to be going in then go ahead and don’t be afraid to push the plot forward!

However if you are still unsure, or if it's a really big plot twist that would change the whole direction of the plot then it is always a good idea to contact your Captain and run it by them before you send it to the group.

Developing your Character
Alternatively at times where you have nothing to do you can try to develop your character, bulk out their personalities and feelings to make them seem less two-dimensional. You could do this by simming a relationship, sometimes with another character or even an NPC. You could try and develop a friendship with another player character or simply create a small subplot of your own or simply introduce aspects of your character in your Sims.

Whatever you do remember that any game is generally more fun with two or more people and interaction with a player is far more fun than simming with a NPC.
Nothing to do?: An all too noticeable and annoying problem is characters who always seem to have 'nothing to do'. If you pick out and watch any episode of trek you will find that not every character is used in every single plot.

Well lets apply that to simming and presume that sometime or another the plot doesn’t really leave that much for you to do, what can you do in the meanwhile? Well, the first step might be to try and get yourself involved in the plot and volunteer to help or assist another member of the crew. Don’t always feel that the Captain has to give you orders for you to take part, after all they are human and can’t figure out every last detail to keep you busy all of the time. Alternatively you can try some character development (see above).

Summary
The above should make sure that you don’t get stuck or wait unnecessarily for other players. If however you do find yourself with a problem and you just can't seem to get involved or for some reason or another can't sim for a few days, write to your CO. They will do their best to help you and will try to work you into the plot. All in all there is no excuse for not simming regularly. You just have to try and get involved and push yourself forward. The result should be that you enjoy yourself much more.

5.0 Your Character

5.1 First Thoughts
When you first applied to the Galactic Alliance Fleet you submitted an Application. Within this was several pieces of information detailing your character and was sent back to you at the bottom of your acceptance email informing you when Training would begin. This would have included the following information-

Character's name:
Species:
Gender:
Physical Description:

As this information was submitted when you were still relatively new to Galactic Alliance Fleet you may wish to change certain aspects of that character when it comes to writing your biography as you sim them over your simming career. Although changes such as name, species and gender are more difficult to change, their temperament, history and physical description can be changed easily at this stage as well as other more minor changes during the course of your career.

5.2 Writing your Biography
Each one of you will be required to submit a biography of your character. These do not need to be long, nor overly detailed. But it is essential that your new crew mates know something about your character. To that end, I would ask you to take the time to create and submit a biography to your Captain, Training officer or even by the form provided on the website.

Our Biographies are written and presented in a uniform style in order to provide some continuity and also to minimise the amount of time it takes to input all the bios by our Web Design and maintenance Team. If your biography differs from that show below it will most likely be sent back to you so it can be put right.

Subject Heading
Character Name - Current Position, Current Ship/Base
Basic Information
Current Position: (if applicable) Current Vessel: (if applicable)
Current Rank: Character's name: Species: Gender:
Age: Date of Birth: Place of Birth:
Family
Mother: Father: Siblings: (Brothers Sisters etc) Spouse: (If your married, who is your partner)
Others: (Other family members fundamental to your characters development).
Detailed Descriptions
Physical Description: What your character looks like, your characters appearance to the rest of the crew members.
Character Description: What your character is like as a person, what does he/she like to do, what do they like, dislike or fear and how they react to situations.
Character History: Your Childhood - where born and raised, anything else necessary to our understanding of you. Any experiences which you feel we should know about.
Professional History: Any Experiences you had in your later life which you feel we should know about up to and including being posted on board a Starship.
Dated Starfleet History: Your dated history after passing the academy. ie.
237904.15 - Passed Starfleet Academy and was posted on board the USS Lockley as ??? Officer.
Note: Please see the Stardates Section for further information on how to calculate the Stardate.
Awards: Details of all awards won whilst in Galactic Alliance Fleet. These will of course be checked against out records.
Other Notes: Anything else you consider important that does not fit into any of the above Headings.
Note: This format varies only for Trill’s, whereby another section entitled ‘Symbiont History’ is included after Character History.

5.3 Things to Remember Sometimes players can set themselves up for a fall by designing their character in a certain way or by making them too difficult to play. As a general guideline always try and keep aspects of your own personality in them. This will help you identify with your character much more and allow you, as a player, to sim more easily and therefore enjoy yourself more. A few guidelines, hints and tips are listed below:

1. Orphans get old fast. Too much tragedy in your characters life doesn't add much to your interest as a character.
2. Your age should be appropriate for your training. For example Doctors have been in graduate school for a number of years before they even joined Starfleet!
3. Not everyone can graduate first in their class, and be exceptional at all skills. In the end, shortcomings and weaknesses are more interesting to Sim than exceptional qualities. Try to ensure your character is balanced.
4. Characters or races with super powers will not be permitted. Q’s or Q-like species are specifically not permitted.

If you have any questions whilst writing your biography then please contact your Commanding Officer or Training Officer. Examples of crew biographies can be accessed on all of the ship sites, which are easily accessed through the Fleet page on the main site.

6.0 Crew Positions & Responsibilities

Onboard any Starship, Station or base every crew member will be assigned a particular task. Each has his or her own specialty and it is the combination of these skilled officers working together which allow any vessel to function well and as a unit.

Helm-Comm-Ops Officer (HCO) The HCO Officer is responsible for the general piloting and navigation of the vessel, scheduling of all major resources between departments e.g. Deflector dish, reserving of holodecks as well as co-ordination of away missions and monitoring of the ships communications systems.

Other Responsibilities: Navigation references/course plotting, supervision of automatic flight operations, manual flight operations, position verification, and bridge liaison to engineering department. Sending and receiving distress signals, locating important people on or off the ship, sending and receiving: Ship to ground, ship to ship, and ship to Starbase communications.

Receives Orders From: Commanding Officer or First Officer. Location of Station: Either Helm/Comm/Ops post to front of the bridge.

Tactical Officer (Tac) / Chief Tactical Officer (CTO) The Tactical Officer is responsible for all of the defensive and offensive systems that the Starship possesses as well as scan for, analyze and identify any vessels that either are threatening or arouse suspicion. Although this position tends to be active only during aggressive encounters the Tactical officer is responsible for keeping the offensive and defensive systems at peak performance as well as constantly updating his or her own knowledge from the Starfleet Tactical Database.

Other Responsibilities: Maintaining an inventory of all torpedo and ship mounted weapons inventories and status.

Receives Orders From: Commanding Officer, First Officer or Chief Tactical Officer.

Location of Station: Main Tactical Panel usually located behind Captains Chair.

Operations Officer (Ops) / Chief of Operations (CoO) An operations officer is responsible for the day to day running of a station or base. He/She will co-ordinate local traffic and trade as well as co-ordinate internal repairs with the CEO and other departments where necessary.

Other Responsibilities: However, the role changes dramatically should the station/base be attacked. In this instance they are responsible for the offensive and defensive systems, including Phasers, Torpedoes, Support Vessels and shielding. Also should any damage be sustained they are responsible for evacuation of residents/civilians and co-ordination repairs with engineering staff. In the event of the station/base being boarded they will co-ordinate with Security staff.

Operations is a difficult job as it required a wide range of skills the most important of which being the ability to communicate quickly and effectively, having to deal with various species on an almost daily basis. The Operations officer will have to deal with Ambassadorial Requests (where applicable). The Chief of Operations reports directly to the First Officer or Commanding Officer.

Receives Orders From: Commanding Officer, First Officer or Chief of Operations. Location of Station: Station or Base Operations Center. Note: Replaces tactical and Helm/Comm/Ops positions on bases and Stations.

Security Officer (Sec) / Chief of Security (CoS) The Security Officer is responsible for the internal well-being and defence of the vessel as well as the operation of any internal defensive systems the vessel is fitted with in regards to intruders or turnabout crew members. Is also responsible for security around the transporters, shuttle bays, cargo bays, armoury inventories as well as ensuring security of the Brig is maintained to a high level when prisoners or convicts are being transported.

Other Responsibilities: A Security detachment will always be required on Away missions and during diplomatic and cultural missions providing any VIP's or Ambassadors with sufficient security and protection.

Receives Orders From: Commanding Officer, First Officer or Chief of Security.

Location of Station: Main Security Panel usually located next to the Tactical Panel and behind Captains Chair.

Engineering Officer (EO) / Chief Engineering Officer (CEO) The Engineering Officer is responsible for the monitoring of all the ships internal primary, secondary and Tertiary systems. As well as co-ordination of Engineering Staff to perform repairs, maintenance or diagnostics on any system and report back to the Commanding Officer or First Officer where required.

Other Responsibilities: Is responsible for the preparation of reports to the Commanding Officer on the ships status as well as overseeing any technological projects with regards to the safety of the ship and her crew at all times.

Receives Orders From: Commanding Officer, First Officer or Chief Engineering Officer.

Location of Station: Main Engineering, or bridge panel usually located behind the Tactical and security panels.

Medical Officer (MO) / Chief Medical Officer (CMO) The Medical Officer is responsible for the physical wellbeing and general health of the crew, civilians and guests onboard the vessel and will provide diagnosis and treatment up to the limits of their training which will often include surgery on other species. As such a wide range of Alpha Quadrant species biology is required at Academy stage although other non-federation species will most likely not be included in this training.

Other Responsibilities: In crisis situations, this quickly changes and expands anywhere from low-level injury care to high-level surgery. The Medical officer will also act as a biologist on most ships.. It is a requirement for a Medical Officer to attend general away missions unless the situation prohibits it.

Receives Orders From: Commanding officer, First Officer or Chief Medical Officer.

Location of Station: Sickbay/Infirmary

Science Officer (SO) / Chief Science Officer (CSO) The Science Officer is responsible for observing, mapping and recording of all stellar objects a vessel finds as well as observing and preparing detailed notes on any new civilisations the vessel encounters for future reference by ships staff and Starfleet as a whole.

Other Responsibilities: In crisis situations the Science officer may be required to put forth suggestions or comment on plans which may or may not be potentially dangerous to the ship or her crew. Will also attend most general exploratory away missions and excursions.

Receives Orders From: Commanding Officer, First Officer or Chief Science Officer.

Location of Station: Usually a post to left hand side of the bridge.

Ships Counsellor The Counsellor is responsible for the mental wellbeing and health of the crew, civilians and guests on board the vessel. They will provide diagnosis and treatment up to the limits of their training which will often include a and extensive knowledge of other alien cultures and the particular anxieties that this may cause. As mental health will often affect the physical health of a patient and vica versa the Counsellor will be required to work closely with the Medical Department on some cases where their duties overlap.

Other Responsibilities: In crisis situations the Counsellor will advise the Captain or Commanding Officer on any matters which may affect the mental stability or wellbeing of the crew or civilians on board. This character can also act as a mediator or arbitrator, and as a protocol officer for the captain. The role of Protocol advisor is a very important part of the counsellors duties as s/he is expected to know the 'rules' for dealing with other species.

Receives Orders From: Commanding officer or First Officer.

Location of Station: Usually seat beside captain and a private office in the saucer section of the starship for one-on-one consultations.

Non-Standard Crew Positions: These positions vary from the above in that they are not found on all Starships, Stations or bases and are solely at the Captains Discretion. Other positions may exist and as such this list includes only positions that have occurred on multiple ships at this time.

Bartender / Café Manager/Shop Owner The Bartender is a non-Starfleet position often held by ex-military personnel or just people who feel the urge to go out and see the wonders of the universe with their own eyes. Either way these people will all have had to pass the basic training that non-commissioned officers to be allowed upon a Starship. They are responsible for the smooth running of their individual establishments and to contact security if a fight breaks out.

Other Responsibilities: Because of the line of work a Bartender is often content to listen to their clientele. As such they will likely here more than the Captain or any other officers. If they suspect that an officer is in danger, they have a responsibility to help them and inform the Captain. Of course this is easier said than done.

Receives Orders From: Commanding Officer or First Officer.

Location of Station: Main Bar / Social Point.

Deck Officer (DO)/Mission Specialist (MS) The Deck Officer or Mission Specialist is a general position created on some starships where due to a variety of reasons officers are often away from their posts or are excessively busy which means they cannot perform all or part of their duties. They are highly trained individuals capable of operating almost all of the Bridge Positions including Helm-Comm-Ops, Tactical, Security and Science.

Other Responsibilities: The Deck Officer is also responsible for all shuttle bay and fighter operations, will attend almost all away missions where required.

Receives Orders From: Commanding Officer or First Officer.

Location of Station: Any Bridge station

Note: Other positions exist, however are solely at the captains discretion. Non-Standard positions are often harder to play than Standard positions and should only be taken by people who have the skills to motivate themselves in most simming environments.
7.0 Stardates, Military Time & Addressing Officers

7.1 - Stardates: In the Star Trek universe you could be a million light years from earth and with the extensive use of FTL's (faster than light drives) and the differences between cultures, there had to be an alternative way to work out the dates other than little old Earth. So a standardized system was agreed upon by the Member Planets of the Federation.

To write the stardate firstly take the date ie. 13th January 2014. As usual the month April is indicated numerically by the number 04.

This is arranged as follows:
YR + MNTH + DAY

for instance today's Star date would be 201401.13 if it was January the 13th.
But as you know Star Trek is set in the future, so onto today's date you would add 373 to the first four digits of the stardate making the current star trek stardate 238704.22
Once you know the principle calculations it makes it a lot easier to work out.

Stardates are used primarily if you wish to date an email or personal log but will mainly occur in the Dated History section of Member Biographies.

7.2 - Military Time: All the groups in Galactic Alliance Fleet use military time. It's a simple concept based upon the 24 hour digital clock designed by the real life military to avoid confusion as to when to attack or arrive. It is however a concept that can take a little getting used to.

As you know Six twenty-three AM is written as 06:23am in numerical form.
However in military time the am and the : are obsolete making the time 0623. It is normally said with the word ‘hours’ after it.

E.g.- Delgado: Ensign, I’ll meet you in the shuttlebay at 0623 hours

However, Six PM can be a little bit more difficult. The clock does not start again at noon, and runs on straight until midnight. So six PM is 6 + 12 or 1800 hours.

7.3 - Addressing Officers: As you know Starfleet is a military organization and as such has a specific chain of command and rank system. To make the SIM’S seem that bit more realistic we use the following appropriate formal forms of address:

At all Times: When addressing officers of higher and lower ranks use of the rank and last/only name of the officer -OR- rank alone should suffice e.g.- Commander Smith or
Commander

To the Commanding Officer: When addressing the Commanding Officer use of the rank and last/only name -OR- rank only -OR- Sir/Ma’am. e.g.- Captain Delgado
Captain
Sir/Ma’am

To an Officer of Lower Rank: When addressing an officer of lower rank use of the rank and last/only name -OR- last name alone -OR- rank alone -OR- if the officer is male, Mr. and his last/only name. This last form has no female equivalent.

e.g.- Ensign Simpson
Simpson
Ensign
Mr. Simpson

Doctors: When addressing doctors please be aware they can be addressed by their rank or by Doctor, in any of the above appropriate combinations.

First Names: Generally, a player will only call people by their first names off duty, or when it's only the two of you on duty together.

Note: These forms of address will generally apply for both the SFMC and WCD with only minor alterations and additions.

8.0 Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Does it cost anything to join the Galactic Alliance Fleet RPG Group?
A: In short, No. Galactic Alliance Fleet is run by a group of dedicated members and we provide all the services and web site resources absolutely free of charge.

Q: Do I need to sign on at a specific time to Sim?
A: For Forum/Nova Simming you can sign on at any time, day or night you choose. However you should as a rule sim at least once a week or at the pace set by your commanding officer.

Q: How often should I Sim?
A: This is a difficult question to answer; ideally you should try to ssim at least once a week, or at the pace set by your commanding officer, otherwise there is the danger that you will fall behind with the plot.

Q: How do I become a Captain?
A: The first step is to become a Commander. To do that, you must be recommended for the rank by your Captain. Then, you have to undertake a Commanders Exam which will consist of running a Training Mission. Once you complete this successfully you can be promoted by your Captain to the rank of Commander.

The next step is to be recommended for the position of Commanding Officer by your current Captain, although the time period between can be quite brief or quite lengthy depending upon the current group intake and state of the fleet.

All the recommendations are then sorted through by the senate and the best candidate is then selected depending upon that candidates experience in the group, their simming quality and how they appear to be doing.

Once you have been selected then you get to name and choose the class of your ship, which is then approved by the Senate and the group is setup. Currently new vessels cannot be of the same class as any currently existing in the fleet.

Now is the hard part. All new Commanding Officers must complete a three month trial period to make sure they are up to scratch. However we appreciate some new CO’s have gaps in their knowledge and may require some help, for this reason you will be assigned a 'mentor'. Usually this will be a senior captain who will sit in the background of the group and offers advice and recommendations where necessary or asked. They will also be responsible for keeping the senate informed as to your progress and making a recommendation on your captain’s exam to the senate at the end of the three month trial period. Provided you pass then you will be promoted to the rank of Captain.

Q: What is the Coalition, who is involved and what does it do?
A: The Galactic Alliance Fleet Coalition currently consists of all the ship commanding officers and the heads of department. It is a diplomatic group where every member has an equal say and an equal vote. As such your captain represents their ship in the Coalition.

The Coalitiion is responsible for the running of the group and any major decisions. They decide who gets promoted to captain (and above), any major projects, ideas or problems and also any major shifts of policy.

Q: Can I join more than one ship?
A: We do allow simmers to play more than one character in Galactic Alliance Fleet, however we generally believe that new members should settle into their first character first. In our experience sometimes people can under-estimate the additional workload of taking on a second character and reading through two or more ships email lists. As such we recommend you wait till you achieve the rank of Lieutenant before venturing along this path.

Q: When I create a Secondary Character, do I have to go through training again?
A: Once a player has been through the Academy they will not need to go through it again, however your details will be checked to ensure you are the person you claim to be.

Q: How do I request a Secondary Character?
A: To request a secondary character you will need to contact your commanding officer who will then pass your request onto the postings officer. Who will advise you on vacant positions however you will need to provide a full biography before you are posted to a vessel.

Q: How do I request a transfer?
A: If you find yourself asking this question, then something has obviously gone wrong. Our advice is to take up any problems or fears with your Captain before it gets to this stage. They will try and accommodate your needs and will do their utmost to be fair.
However if this is not enough to resolve the situation then the correct procedure is to email your Captain and request a promotion. They will then pass your request onto the postings officer. Who will advise you on vacant positions however you will need to provide a full biography before you are posted to a vessel.

Q: Where can I find information on Warp Drives, medicines or anything else I need to SIM with?
A: We recommend sites such as Memory Alpha - http://en.memory-alpha.org - for canon information (anything included in the Star Trek TV shows or movies) and Memory Beta - http://memory-beta.wikia.com/? - for non-canon information (anything included in books, comics or other media.)

Q: How can I help Galactic Alliance Fleet?
A: Our members can help in many ways; the first and most obvious is to tell everyone you know about us. Many of our members have already recommended members and it is our primary and most effective method of advertisement.

Second, if you fancy trying your hand at writing feature articles for the Nova News section you can enroll for the 'News Desk' if you have any good and original ideas for articles for that category.