Federations Finest - Star Trek Hack for Mouse Guard

After a bit of inspiration where I thought “Huh the best RPG for Star Trek I feel is actually Mouse Guard” and watching an episode of the Next Generation where it seemed clear they were mostly focusing on going against Beliefs I have finally actually made my first hack for an RPG.

Its called Federations Finest it transposes Mouse Guard to the Star Trek Universe, instead of the fight against a wild and natural wold it is more of a fight for the ideals of starfleet and how reality might mean those ideals aren’t as clear cut as people might like to think about them. Also dealing with Alien Races, discovering new worlds, and dealing with paperwork.

Link is here: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B8CL5fqRJRz7TGxFRXdBeVFMd0E?usp=sharing

The first document is a general overview, the missions that Starfleet might go one, Nature and Recruitment Questions, and Designing a Mission. The second document is all the Skills and Factors for those skills I have come up with and the Traits.

Things I’m happy with: I think I’ve captured a few Star Trek things with the missions and some of the skills and I think I was inspired by making the prime conflict the argument between reality and the rules of the Prime Directive.

Things that I should look at more and work on: Skills - I am still not to sure if there are enough skills, also a lot of the skills are very starship focused when I kind of thought the game was going to be more focused on the Away Missions on planets. But thinking about it, there aren’t really that many skills used on away missions. The Construction of things focus of Original Mouse Guard Skills doesn’t really work for Star Trek I don’t think. If anyone can think of other skills that might be added then that would be great.

Also a bit concerned that Computers basically can help everything. It makes sense in the fiction but I think it might be overpowered Mechanically.

So yeah any comments and thoughts are good to have. I hope to playtest this at some point, and please tell me if you play it and what you think and what you did/changed.

Also its a hack of 1st edition mouse guard as I only have the 1st edition book, so Wises are from that edition.

My mind races as I read this. The first thing that springs to mind (even before I finish, sorry) is to flip the order of the Player turn and GM turn. That would go a long way to simulating the way that individual characters always seem to be in the middle of some personal development at the top of the episode. More feedback later, maybe even helpful!

EDIT AFTER READING: Ok, very impressive. Your understanding of the setting definitely comes across, and I think you’re on to something here.

I kind of want “Fighter” to be “Security”, honestly, since that’s basically what being a security officer means.

I would prefer not to have weapon-based skills. As far as I’m concerned, Fighter handles personal phasers and Tactical handles shipboard phasers and photon torpedoes. In both Torchbearer and Mouse Guard, skills are essentially themed by profession and that is already a strong element of Trek roles. Overlap is okay. I would scan Memory Alpha summaries for random one-off characters and what their professions were, and build my list that way in addition to the traditional ship roles. I’d also adjust the skill names to be noun forms, but that’s just me – (Helmsman, Engineer, Doctor, Botanist, Trader, Smuggler, Terrorist, Spy, Colonist, Ambassador, Archaeologist, Attaché, Operations, Commander (Leader?), Counselor, Scientist, etc.)

You’ve done a great thing here!

Interrogator. Sociologist. Time Traveler. Trombonist.

Yeah Ive realized I forget about the player turn, you make a good.point in that an episode of the show usually mixes in personal and the main plot of the episode.

I was thinking of writing something about how the players turn should be focused on relationships. Your not just eating food to recover from hungry, you are going to guinans bar and having a chat with her while also eating food.

Your right on the names and maybe tweaking it to fit those names I got the idea they fit but having the names would be more evocative definitely.

Also Thanks!

The other thing i got to think about is whether the conditions make sense. Hunger seems to not be a thing in Star Trek(though drinking seems to be) and maybe some of the others don’t make to much sense but can’t really think of anything decent ro replace them with.

Well, people GET hungry, there are certainly episodes where cast member X is captured/stranded on a planet/whatever and away from the ship and food is an issue.

The only problem I would see is STAYING hungry being an issue if you DO have access to the ship.

In TNG and later, constant access to and use of computers is nearly a given. You could treat them like tools in Torchbearer: If you have the skill, you have the basic tools as well, and computers are a basic tool for just about any skill. Computers would only become a factor when you lose connection to the ship or there’s a computer malfunction or whatever, giving -1D to the test. Especially powerful supercomputers might be worth a bonus.

A computers skill would come into play when a computer system itself is the problem, say when the holodeck goes off the rails once again or a computer needs to be hacked.

In TNG and later, constant access to and use of computers is nearly a given. You could treat them like tools in Torchbearer: If you have the skill, you have the basic tools as well, and computers are a basic tool for just about any skill.

Yeah I think I’m going to have to take Computers out and just have it in the Fiction that pretty much on a Starship you will have access to a computer. A Skill for Hacking seems like a good idea as well, will definitely add that.

The only problem I would see is STAYING hungry being an issue if you DO have access to the ship.

Yes with replicators food and drink is not going to be an issue really so that means Hunger and Thirsty will be easily cured, but maybe the cost is that you still need to spend a check to cure it.

I have updated the Skills list. Using Evil Lincoln’s idea, I went on a Wikipedia page and used all the jobs that I thought fit on there to make skills, now there is about 20 skills(still don’t think its enough, Recruitment makes me realize that so much, an Admiral can easily get 6 in a lot of skills) but I am a lot more happy with the skills and that there is a lot of different helps you can get for most of them.

Also wrote up a bit about the Players Turn and some Sample Missions using a few Star Trek Next Generation episodes.

Players Turn

During the GM’s Turn you can use Traits against yourself, this will give you a -1D to your overall skill test, but by doing this you earn a check. When the GM’s Turn is finished they will have the narrative control to the players, where you will spend these checks to create scenes for themselves. There are a few scenes they can use this for:
• Recovery – The only way to recover from conditions that you gain from the GM’s Turn is in the players Turn. Players should frame this as going to someone or talking with people, Starfleet is all about the personal relationships on the Ship so Recovery should reflect that. Instead of Just having food and drink, you’re going to the bar and maybe talking with the other ensigns/the bar owner. Success/Failure from recovering could reflect this relationship in some way.
• Personal Goals – Every Starfleet Officer maybe has a personal Hobby or personal thing they like to do on the Ship. The Players Turn is where you can make that into a reality, maybe you have fun in the Holodeck, or like to paint. Again players should bring this into relationships on the Ship, your not just painting, your painting and showing it to your friend. Your not solving a Sherlock Holmes case on your own, you might be doing it with the Captain!
• Relationships and Debate – Finally away from the others you could just build on the relationships you have in the ship or make new ones. Tying this stuff to your beliefs and instincts is always good, maybe your having a debate between two people’s beliefs, or how your beliefs intersect with Starfleet as a whole. This makes good Drama
Starship Players Turn – If you have checks and you have time to do it, and your on the Starship you can spend one of these checks to have a mini scene of a players turn, maybe your having a conversation with a friend or getting advice about the mission and your struggles with your beliefs. This does not include recovery! You have to spend more checks outside of the Players Turn to recover in mission because you don’t generally have the time to do this big of a scene.

Sample Missions

Encounter at Farpoint

Background – The Bandi people has suddenly made the Farpoint outpost that uses quite a lot of energy, they were a simple people before so this is a shock to the Federation. They have sent you for Diplomatic relations.
• Strange Power Source – You have become suspicious of the strange power source that runs this, the Bandi people are very reluctant to actually say where their power comes from. You have also noticed strange times where your greatest want has been able to be fulfilled. You should try to investigate what and where this power source is. Failure Twist: Other Starfleet Officers feel that the Investigation shouldn’t be deepened because the Energy and the Outpost could be used to their advantage. Failure Condition: Angry at the blocks that the Bandi people keep on putting in your way Investigating this.
• Aggressive Alien – An Alien appears at the Outpost and starts to attack it, no one seems to know why and the Outpost goes into high alert. The Bandi ask you to fend the creature off. If Strange Power Source is successful the players understand that there is a similar alien underneath the Outpost which the Bandi are using to create the energy. How will the Starfleet Players get rid of the alien? Failure Twist: Bandi tell Starfleet that if they get rid of this Alien they will go back to their older more savage days and their gains will be lost. Failure Condition: Injured from the Alien’s attack.


Background – While on a routine mission on a planet, an Admiral has contacted the ship for a Secret Meeting. The Admiral says that there is something weird going on and it seems to be even at the highest levels of Starfleet. He says to look at the Orders of Starfleet to confirm his suspicions.
• Orders From Starfleet – Intrigued and disturbed by what that Admiral said the Orders of Starfleet need to be looked at for any irregularities and where these are coming from. This could be an Ob 8 Administrator Role, or you could try sneaking into Starfleet Records office, or a player could come up with another Good Idea to try and get this information. You find out that the Orders come straight from the Top Brass on Earth, and they are very irregular even one of them causing the destruction of a Starship. Failure Twist: An Admiral on another Ship seems to have cottoned on the fact you have been looking at old Records, they ask to board your ship to confirm what you have been looking at. Failure Condition: Exhausted from all the Records you had to go through.
• The Alien Conspiracy – When getting to Earth you realize immediately something is up as the Admirals are acting very weirdly. Investigating a bit you understand that the Top Brass has been infected by Aliens that want to use the Federation to further their species. They also want to convert you and your Crew Members and take your ship over. Failure Twist: The Aliens have gotten on board your Starship and heading towards the Klingons to try and infect them. Failure Condition: Sick from the Bug being inserted into you.

The Monitors

Background – While in the secret outpost behind Holographic projection, you see the fall and injurement of one of the Bronze Age Race peoples that you are Monitoring. The officers in the station insist you help.
• Injured Primitive – The Injuries on the Primitive are to great to be able to treat them on the planet and only the ship’s Medical Facility can help. This is against The Prime Directive. Should the crew bring them to the ship to let them recover or let the person die? Failure Twist: The Primitive wakes up and sees the fantastic technology and advancement of the ship and is in reverence of it. Failure Condition: Tired from the work that has to be done/
• Monitor Cult – While dealing with the Injured Primitive another Primitive saw the Fantastic Outpost and is now made a Religion about this. Feeling that the Outpost is Angry the Leader has started to sacrifice people and leaving the bodies outside the Post for the Crew. Something must be done about this. Failure Twist: Starfleet find out about all this and want to discipline the crew. Failure Condition: Angry at how everything seems to have gone wrong.

I, Borg

Background – While Investigating a Distress Beacon the crew find a crashed Borg Ship and surviving Borg Drone on its own. Wanting to investigate their enemy they transport it back to the Ship.
• Investigation – Starfleet wants you to investigate the Borg up close to see any weaknesses and exploits they can use in the fight against them. The Borg seems like a lost child not knowing where he is and what is happening. Failure Twist: Starfleet strongly suggests uploading a virus to the Borg so they can wipe the Borg out when they arrive to pick him up. Condition: Hungry and Thirsty from focusing on the job.
• Borg Cube – The Borg Cube has found the Distress beacon and is coming towards the planet which the ship is on. The Drone is seemingly getting more individualistic and more human with the passing days. Should they allow the Borg to collect this Drone and should they use him against the Borg? Failure Twist: The Drone wants to stay on the ship and refuses to go onto the Cube. Failure Condition: Sick from the decision that they have had to make.

Now all I need is to make the Enemies section. Does anyone have any kind of template that I could use to make good enemies for the game and make sure they are not horribly overpowered or underbalanced or whatever?

I do think the conditions need a little help.

I think Hungry/Thirsty should be “Distracted” or something – still representing a penalty to disposition, but instead because the player is caught up working on whatever the failed roll was.

I think there should be an Investigator skill that serves as Scout for away teams and the like. Tricorder is tools. This one sees a lot of play on the Holodeck, too.

I do think the conditions need a little help.

I think Hungry/Thirsty should be “Distracted” or something – still representing a penalty to disposition, but instead because the player is caught up working on whatever the failed roll was.

Hmm yeah but coming up with conditions that fit Star Trek is actually kind of hard really, can’t think of any that come to the top of my head.

I think there should be an Investigator skill that serves as Scout for away teams and the like.

You’re probably right, but now I would need to think of another skill so it comes to 22(don’t like odd numbers :p)

Tricorder is tools.

Actually tools are something that I looked at and thought ah there is a problem, the problem is for example the Tricorder can be used in a LOT of skills in Star Trek, and it seems to be that kind of one tool for like 10 skills would not be in the spirit of the game…

Just realized there is already a skill that is the Investigation skill an dis modeled off scout, Operations!

There are a lot of potentially useful design spaces in Burning Empires. For example, automated systems (computers) are basically characters with a rating that have dice. They can help or be helped, which is a nice way to explain why people have to babysit consoles on the bridge.