USS Minoru

Rules and Guidelines

Rules of Conduct

The goal of USS Minoru is to provide a fun and safe simming enviroment. With that in mind, there are a few simple rules necessary to maintain order. Players should also be familiar with all Horizon Fleet regulations.

Prime Directive - Above all else, be respectful of your fellow players. While it is inevitable that there may be disagreements between players, you are expected to remain polite. Disagreements should be kept private or brought to the attention of the captain and/or executive officer. Finally, this simm, like all of Horizon Fleet, is a discrimination-free zone. Prejudice or offensive language based on gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, or other groups is grounds for immediate disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal from the ship and formal charges with the JAG for violation of the Equal Opportunity Policy.

In-character vs Out-of-Character - With that said, in-character disagreements have freer reign. It's perfectly fine for your character to despise another character and can even be fun, as long as all parties keep in mind that it is between the characters and not the players. Just remember that if you get in knock-down, drag-out fight in the mess hall, the CO and XO are unlikely to be terribly happy with you and your characters may end up in the brig. This also applies to in-character prejudices, but if you go that route be careful - if you start skirting the boundaries of good taste or appear to be deliberately using in-character status as a shield, things will not go well for you. Finally, remember that your characters are Starfleet officers, or at least on a Federation starship, and are bound by certain standards of conduct. You are, of course, free to violate those standards if it's part of the character's personality, but remember that there might be in-character consequences.

Character Ownership - Players have final say over what occurs to their characters. Anything beyond very minor actions, including dialogue, expressions, and injuries should happen only with consent of the player. There are only two exceptions to this. In-character, characters are expected to obey orders of superior officers, but complaints (IC or OOC) of abuse will be taken seriously. Out-of-character, the CO reserves the right to manipulate characters for plot purposes, although in most cases there will be prior discussion. This will not involve more than minor inconveniences or injuries (such as a phaser stun or twisted ankles) and reactions to these events left up to the player. The CO also may manipulate characters of players who leave the simm or disappear unexpectedly if it is plot-critical. Finally, players are able to reserve up to two (2) protected NPCs in addition to their main character, with the understanding that the main character must be used regularly.

Simm Rating - Minoru is currently following the Horizon Fleet standard of 13+ rating. No graphic or excessively descriptive violence, gore, or sexual content is allowed. Use actual Trek episodes and movies as your guidline here - while injuries do occur, they're not dwelled upon, and romantic encounters beyond a hug or kiss fade to black. The same goes for language - mild swearing is fine, but even the Marines aren't allowed to swear like sailors.

Leaves of Abscence - If you plan to be gone for more than a few days, please contact the CO so that accomodations can be made. Failure to do so can result in disciplinary action for failure to meet posting requirements.

Strike Policy - This simm will operate on a rough three-strike policy. The first time there is an infraction of a particular nature, a warning will be given to insure that a player is aware that they are out of bounds. Further infractions of that nature will result in strikes. The first strike will result in a formal written warning. The second strike (including a strike for other reasons) is grounds for demotion. The third strike is grounds for removal from the simm. Strikes are erased after three months. However, the CO reserves the right to immediately apply the first strike or harsher penalties for especially egregious actions, or if it becomes clear that there is a pattern of disciplinary problems.

Posting Guidelines

All players are expected to post at least once every two weeks, and are strongly encouraged to post more often. Posts should be at least 250 words in length. Joint posts are strongly encouraged, but should include at least 250 words per character. In order to assist with tracking this, JPs should state at the end who participated besides the person posting in. Posts should also be substative in some way - the character taking action, interacting with other crew members, reflecting on recent events. In short, it should somehow further the development of the story or character. Finally, please spell-check and proofread before posting.

All posts within the in-character forums (Missions, Shoreleave, and Logs) are assumed to be in-character unless stated otherwise. If a portion of a post is out of character, the tag "OFF:" should be used, with "ON:" used to designate where in-character material begins again. For clarity's sake, please keep OOC notes confined to the beginning or ends of posts. Extensive OOC discussion should be taken to the mission discussion forum. Also along these lines, please remember that what you know is not always what your characters know. They cannot know secrets or things that happened away from their location unless there is a reasonable way for them to have found out. (This is a not a suggestion to bug the captain's ready room.)

Posts should begin with a statement of time and location. For example: [Bridge, MD 01, 1700] tells us that this scene takes place on the bridge, on the first day of the mission, at 1700 hours (please use 24 hour time for clarity). If the mission involves locations off of Minoru, please be sure to specify whether you are aboard the ship or somewhere else, eg [USS Minoru, Mess Hall, MD 5, 0730]. Scene transitions do not have to include time, but as a general rule major changes of location or extended time gaps should be put in a separate post. For example, walking from your quarters into a turbolift and riding it to the bridge doesn't need a new post. On the other hand, don't skip straight from going to sleep in your tent while on an away mission to waking up - after all, it's dark; you may be eaten by a grue.

Finally, a word on realism. It may be odd to say this in a science-fiction setting, but try to keep within the bounds of what is plausible in the Star Trek setting. Do not charge single-handedly into a horde of angry Klingons, unless you plan to get beaten up. Try to stick to established Trek techology and 'science', too, and avoid inventing technology-of-the-week. Think about how to apply existing technology in inventive ways. Missions will be planned so that it's possible to solve the problems in them without making up crazy technology that has to be forgotten next mission - or, on rare occasions, it might not be something fixable with limited time and it's something that can be worked on so that when the Evil Alien shows up in another mission, he gets a nasty surprise when his Kill-O-Zap blaster bounces off the shields.

Rank Determination and Promotions

The starting rank of a character is determined by both in-character and out-of-character factors. Out-of-character factors generally determine the upper limit of starting rank. Good but not exceptional applications will typically result in a rank of Lieutenant (J.G.). Applications than need improvement result in the rank of Ensign. Full lieutenant is reserved for freat applications and it typically given to department heads. Lieutenant Commander is granted only in exceptional cases such as transfers. However, the starting rank can be lowered at the player's request or due to in-character necessity. For example, department heads should not be outranked by members of their staff. Players should keep in mind how their rank would fit with their career status as well. People fresh out of the Academy are almost always ensigns (although there are occasional exception), while someone who's unusually old for their rank might need an explanation for why (such as disciplinary problems, late career starts, etc).

Promotions will be granted based on similar factors. Players who show improvement in their skills will be given promotions, unless there are in-character reasons not to do so. It may take a mission or two to go into affect, and obviously there is an upper limit based on the ranks of department heads, the XO, and the CO. Promotions are supplemented by various simm and Fleet awards that allow for recognition even when promotion is not currently possible.

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