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Ship Closeup – USS Constitution-B

StarBase 118 Staff

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The USS Constitution, NCC-9012-B, is one of the longest serving vessels in the Starbase 118 fleet. As such the vessel has had a very colourful history with adventures spanning countless crews who have visited a rich variety of different planets and star systems.

Originally launched in 237808 under the command of Captain Xan Kanthoth Hebron, she is now under the leadership of Captain Jalana Rajel, latest in a long line of officers to hold the center seat aboard this fine vessel.  Today we are joined by Captain Rajel, Commander Saveron, Lt. Commander Atan T’Seva, Lieutenant Ravenna Carter, Lieutenant Jacob Horne, and Lieutenant Lazarus Davis to tell us more about this storied vessel.

DeVeau: Thank you for joining us.  Can you please start by giving us a short overview on the USS Constitution-B and how it fits into our fleet?

Rajel: Thank you for having us! The Conny’s missions vary a lot, though with TNG being ‘my show’ I would say that the feel is a lot in line with that series. We do try to change it up here and there, mix some dark with some light missions and offer a place where everyone can shape the story.

When a person achieves the rank of Captain, they are generally given a choice of ship class or the option to take command of a previously decommissioned ship.  Why did you choose the USS Constitution-B?

Rajel: As I said before I am a child of TNG. Quite literally the first Star Trek that I saw at the age of 8. Ever since I dreamed that if I ever get to be on a Starship I want it to be a Galaxy Class ship. Now I am not personally on one but being Captain on one in SB118 is the next best thing. When I got my own Command I was able to look through the Fleet Yard and I was the luckiest girl when I saw that the former CO of the Constitution had just changed ships to a different class and the Conny was available. It was a no brainer. And while I could have changed my ship to a newer model after some time, the Galaxy Class remains my Dream Ship and I wouldn’t want to change it.

What sort of advantages does a Galaxy class have over that of other classes of ships? What sort of missions is this class best suited for?

Saveron: The classic Explorer-category vessel, the Galaxy class is a tried and tested design that performs well in a large variety of situations, being intended as a well rounded platform for deep space exploration. Where many vessels are designed with one major purpose in mind, the Galaxy Class is intended to be able to handle anything she may encounter with considerable robustness. From an OOC point of view, the Galaxy Class is familiar to every Star Trek fan due to the Enterprise-D being of this class. As someone who grew up on Star Trek: The Next Generation, playing on one feels like coming home. 

Rajel: In addition to that the Galaxy Class is a great place to include families. We saw it in the show and it’s one part that I always liked seeing in Star Trek. Families that have a place on the ship with their serving parents or spouses. But as Saveron said, the multi purpose is one of the things I like to give as much freedom for the kind of missions we want to play out as we can.

T’Seva: It’s the size and the versatility. You can do any kind of mission you want with this type of ship.

Mason: To echo the others, the Galaxy class is very versatile and provides a very home-y environment as well.

What might be some of the disadvantages of this class of ship?

Saveron: If the Galaxy class has any disadvantage, it is that it is a jack of all trades, and master of none. Neither a battleship nor a science vessel, she performs well in most situations but lacks the specialised equipment of more targeted platforms. It is also an older design, with many Galaxy-class having been retrofitted. The cream-based decor certainly dates them. 

Davis: That, and the cetacean tanks can only carry 4 whales at a time. 

Rajel: That is important to note, because it means we cannot help any planet that has 5 or more whales to save!

T’Seva: Also, the fact that you can do anything can sometimes lead to a little bit of choice fatigue.

What is the most unique thing about the Constitution-B compared to other ships in the fleet?  What sort of quirks, if any, does it have?

Rajel: The crew? Though every crew is unique, so that isn’t a fair comparison. Every CO would say they have the best crew of the fleet, and we all are right. We have some special parts of the ship that will be part of the next question. We also have not only one but two sentient holograms as part of the crew: Mark Two. a medical hologram. and Georgio, our Emergency HairStylist, Interior designer and fashion diva. We have an on board Cadet Education system that offers characters the chance to go through the Academy per remote classes and hands on experience and not to forget the Foreign Powers Exchange program which has brought us some Officers from the Cardassian Union, Klingon Empire and Gorn Hegemony so far. We like to be a ship on which there is room for everyone who wants to be there.

T’Seva: I have to throw it right back at Jalana and point out that Captain Rajel is pretty unique herself. Every interaction reminds us of, for example, her dislike of formality. Also the holograms are in love and it’s cute. (I don’t care how many times the word “friends” is used).

Carter: I have to agree with T’Seva. I think the lack of need for formality is very unique and lends itself to the crew truly feeling more like family and less like people you are just serving and writing  with. Of course, at the end of the day we know who we answer to and the chain of command, but overarching feeling of “I can talk to you and get advice from you because you feel more like mom/other relative and less of a superior” is relaxing and comforting and I think it comes through in the sims rather well. I know if I have good news or I need someone to talk to, both IC and OCC, I can reach out to anyone here. I think it brings the characters closer and the writers as well. It’s less about titles and more of succeeding as a team. 

Is there anything the crew has added the ship to make it your own?  Special decks, special places on those decks, etc? 

Davis: I don’t want to steal anyone’s thunder, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention The Saloon. But I’ll let Lystra/Kincaid talk about that one.

Rajel: As Lystra can’t be here with us right now, allow me to gush over it! The Saloon is what once upon a time would have been the 10 forward. A few years ago this bar was expanded to include an upper deck in addition to the basic floor plan with a great view through large windows. When Kincaid came on board he renovated the bar and when entering through large swinging doors it is like stepping into a different world. As the name indicates the bar is held in the style of an old Terran Western Saloon. In addition to that we have a Victorian Style Library that offers not only access to databases of any possible work in literature – fictional and non fictional – but also a collection of antique paper books that are protected, of course. We also have more recreational facilities like interactive museums, exhibition halls and the like, not to forget our cetacean tanks that Lazarus mentioned above. Our newest addition is an affiliate branch of the Brew Continuum, a coffee shop. Also, just during our last shore leave the Captain’s Office was freshly renovated from the standard design to one that is more in tune with Jalana’s style. At the moment our engineers are working on an adjustment to make offices and the bridges more accessible for special needs -such as disabilities or simply a non humanoid species anatomy- by replacing chairs with a holographic system that allows programmable seating or to simply turn it off.  We are always happy to listen to ideas for such additions and alterations for the ship and see what we can implement to allow making the Conny something unique and special to everyone. And of course the Marchlands, our mission region is completely developed by the Constitution Crew! 

Horne: Laz stole my answer!  Saloon for sure.  And maybe this is cheating a bit but I’m going to extend beyond the Constitution to Starbase 104.  The place is massive.  The crew has really started to put their own personal touches on the different areas of the starbase but still plenty of canvas left.

Carter: I know my favorite is the Brew Continuum, but I may be biased. Then again Ravenna and I are both caffeine addicts. I also really like Jacob’s answer too though!

Lieutenant Jacob Horne, how do you write from the point of a view of an Engineering officer on something as large as a Galaxy class ship?  What sort of interesting technical tidbits have you simmed and explored?

Horne: The size of the ship just means more areas to explore and more options to write about.  And like Jalana, my first exposure to the world of Star Trek was through TNG so I tend to use that for inspiration.  The Constitution may have logged a few more lightyears on the ship’s odometer compared to other ships in the fleet but I like to think the engineering team does a pretty good job keeping things running but with a ship that has been around as long as the Conny has something is always breaking or getting misaligned in some way so there is lots of room for creativity.  There are a few “secret” labs on board that we’ve explored and used to varying levels of success.  We even have the QSD which is something I haven’t really played with too much yet but I feel like there is room for exploration there too.

Lieutenant Carter, what sort of medical sims have you been able to write and how have you explored the realm of medicine on the Constitution-B?

Carter: I am still very new to the duty post and this is my first official mission writing as Doctor Ravenna Carter rather than Ravenna Carter, Scientist. So far though, I more or less taken point of treating an injured individual of an unknown species.

It was quite the challenge being on that side of a first contact and having the freedom to say that this character reacts this way to [insert treatment here] and a simple treatment is now life and death. It was less “look at what we found” and more “great, but it’s hurt and how do I treat it without making it worse” and putting those pieces together as a group of people with different backgrounds and goals. At one point we had intelligence and security working with engineering and linguistics while medical tried to do their thing as well. That was a very ambitious collaboration!

I have also treated hypothermia within my crew so that was something! It was nice to have a fairly basic ailment that we can very easily get IRL and trek up the treatment or be in in a trek world and bring a very simple treatment in the mix. Kind of a nice balance of  sometimes the old way of doing things works just fine. 

But so far my favorite parts are the medical evaluations for new shipmates. It is really a great and fun way to meet the new crewmates and welcome them aboard. I also love that we have had some really fun species join lately that have “challenged” Ravenna’s medical knowledge since they aren’t one’s that she may often interact with. I look forward to all the adventures to come!

Lieutenant Lazarus Davis, would you please tell us a bit about the role the Science department has played in the Constitution-B’s missions?

Davis: Equal parts causing and solving problems, I’d say. I feel fortunate to represent the Science department, because there are seemingly endless possibilities for plot hooks, twists, and turns. The speculative nature of technology and science in the Star Trek universe keeps us grounded, but creates opportunities to play with so many enticing ideas.

Lt. Commander Atan T’Seva, how do you handle security and tactical issues on the Constitution-B, and how do you bring those to life in your sims? 

T’Seva: Cue the joke about how our torpedoes are rusty! (We haven’t done a space battle in a while). Our last two missions both went more along the lines of search and rescue, so I honestly haven’t done a lot of tactical in a while.

Security is very much, to me, about focusing not just on the safety of the crew, but those who interact with the crew. I also like to bring out the fact that every StarFleet officer is well rounded. The difference between a torpedo and a probe is that the first is designed to blow up, which gives T’Seva a fairly solid engineering background and that often comes out in sims.

I’m still waiting for an opportunity to Vulcan neck pinch somebody…

(Note by Rajel: That rust will be shaken off pretty soon, please don’t send the Union of neglected tactical officers! ;D ) 

Commander Sarah Mason, would you share how you incorporate intelligence in the stories and missions?

Mason: Certainly! The region of space we are exploring still holds a lot of mystery. It is surrounded by Klingon and Tholian space and as such, opens up plenty of opportunities to delve deeper and learn more. Intel, in many ways, is a specialty in fact finding. With Senior Cmdr Nugra in the department as well, we are able to use our resources to help find useful information for our missions. We are also able to provide support to security when needed as well. 

Thank you so much for your insights on the USS Constitution – B everyone!

You can read more about USS Constitution-B on the wiki.




The post Ship Closeup – USS Constitution-B appeared first on StarBase 118 Star Trek RPG.


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