Inquest

I’m a little late to the game, but I just watched the final episode of the first season, s01e13: Inquest, of Shield of Tomorrow, the Star Trek live-streamed roleplaying series, on Geek & Sundry Twitch or more exclusively on the private platform Project Alpha, using the new Star Trek Adventures RPG rules from Modiphius. I haven’t been able to catch it, it streamed after I was usually already asleep, the VODs are subscriber only, and if I notice that it’s being re-streamed I haven’t wanted to just jump in the middle … but, this was the final episode of the season, and I watched it.

Now, that’s some damned fine Star Trek. I mean, I realize that was the final episode for the season and so it wrapped up a lot from previous episodes, but that was intense and emotional. Damned near equivalent to some of the best broadcast Star Trek episodes I’ve watched. There was emotion, drama, and intrigue; there were callback to other movies and series; and a final surprise denouement full of hope for the future.

The emotional investment of players like Amy Dallen in the life of an organism encountered was on par with the best of Voyager in the episode Tuvix, which is the first and so far only episode of Star Trek that prompted me to write to congratulate cast and crew on an amazing job, just to put that into perspective. The drama and intrigue of the interaction with Starfleet Intelligence, and the effect on players like Hector Navarro, was on par with the best of Deep Space Nine in episodes featuring Section 31 or focused on Garak’s espionage and secrets. Furthermore, the ability to weave into the story elements from the movies and broadcast series created some fantastic business and dialogue for the players, and that’s something the best of episodes like Deep Space Nine’s Trials and Tribble-ations prove is a compelling experience for the audience and cast.

Seriously, Inquest made me remember how excellent Star Trek can really be when it reaches for those huge allegorical dilemmas in the human experience and while showing the emotional toll and toil those experiences place on those going through them. I appreciate the work done by the entire cast of players and the game master Eric Collin Campbell, as well as the crew on the shoot, for a job well damned done.

With season two tonight, as it moves to Monday nights, at an earlier 7pm PDT time slot, I may just have to stay up late to go with these fine people on their continuing voyages, and catch up on the rest when I can.

“And it’s not like that in the Klingon world. We’re all just trying to stay sane.”

‘Star Trek: Discovery’: How A Klingon Expert Was Essential To Creating The Most Authentic Portrayal Yet. Executive producer Alex Kurtzman, star Kenneth Mitchell, and “the best Klingon speaker in Canada” reveal the level of detail that went into every moment the warrior race was on screen.—Liz Shannon Miller, IndieWire

“It would’ve felt very inauthentic, and I think people would’ve been upset by the idea that we were having the Klingons speaking in English,” Kurtzman said.

So, that meant the Klingons were going to speak Klingon, in lengthy scenes which aimed to develop these characters and this culture beyond typical bad guy tropes. “We know that Klingon is a language that has evolved for over 50 years. People are married in Klingon. They speak Klingon to each other. Which means we can’t get it wrong,” he said.

“We all looked at each other and embraced arms and said, ‘Fine. We’re going to do this. We’re going to write long scenes in Klingon, and we’re going to ask the audience to read the subtitles …”

Mitchell is fairly convinced that many of the people with whom he’s worked have no idea what he looks like underneath his Klingon make-up, including the directors. He and his fellow Klingons were often the first cast members to arrive each day for the three-and-a-half hour prosthetics process. “I realized that ‘I gotta stop this. I gotta meet the directors before I get into my prosthetics, because this is just too weird,’” he said. “And I still am meeting crew members or certain cast members who have never seen me before, outside of my makeup. It’s kind of funny.”

Meanwhile, his “Discovery” compatriots were having a very different experience on set. “One time I went over to visit the Federation side, and there they were: All the cast are in their chairs. It’s bright, they’re laughing, they’re on their cell phones, they’re telling stories,” he said. “And it’s not like that in the Klingon world. We’re all just trying to stay sane. We can’t even use our phones because we have prosthetic hands. It’s a totally different atmosphere.”

These are the Voyages – Volume 1

Star Trek Adventures: These are the Voyages – Volume 1, from Modiphius, is a new collection of missions for Star Trek Adventures.

These are the Voyages: Volume 1 presents eight ready-to-play missions for Star Trek Adventures. Within this book Gamemasters will find the means to test their Starfleet officers at the front line of Starfleet operations. Create your own Star Trek stories of discovery and adventure on the Final Frontier. This is a 128 page full colour hardback book in print & PDF

• 8 ready to play missions using the 2d20 game system from Modiphius Entertainment adapted for Star Trek Adventures, and requires the Star Trek Adventures core rulebook to play.

• Uncover the truth about an anomalous wormhole that has trapped an older starship vessel.

• Weigh up the dilemma of the Prime Directive with an intelligent species that originates outside the confines of normal space and time, subjugated by another civilization.

• Rescue a Federation science vessel, drifting dangerously inside the Romulan Neutral Zone, avoiding an escalation into war.

• Investigate strange events on Carina VII, where a colony is rapidly disintegrating around its foundations.

• Explore a strange alien space station, containing a massive forest eco-system of its own.

• Foil plans to spread a long dead plague and uncover the truths of its origin.

• Stop the theft of an experimental torpedo and pursue its thieves to expose their plot.

• Respond to a distress signal from a mining colony in revolt and discover new life in its mines.

Heghlu’meH QaQ jajvam!

Looks like Klingon on Duolingo is finally nearing release, planned for Sept 15th. On launch, Klingon joins Esperanto and, also recently released, High Valyrian in the elite conlang learning club for English speakers. (Duolingo also recently released both Japanese and Korean, and conversation bots for several languages, which are all pretty awesome as well.) To those who worked hard to make this course happen: Qapla’! (Now … how about Trigedasleng and Toki Pona?)

Klingon is the constructed language spoken by the fictional extraterrestrial Klingon species in the Star Trek universe. Created by Marc Okrand, the language itself is centered around spacecraft, warfare, and weaponry — but it also reflects the directness and sense of humor of the Klingon culture. For example, the closest word you can use to express “hello” is “nuqneH,” which actually means “What do you want?”. There are also plenty of insults, as it is considered an art form.

The mastery of Klingon is extremely uncommon on Earth. Join the galactic elite and start learning this fascinating language.

Originally posted on my personal blog at Heghlu’meH QaQ jajvam!

Star Trek Lives!

Star Trek Lives! Personal notes and anecdotes by Jacqueline Lichtenberg, Sondra Marshak, and Joan Winston “Thanks to you, Star Trek fans …” “Aboard Star Trek’s flagship, the U.S.S. Enterprise, the starfaring adventurers are still dreaming the impossible—and making it come true.”