STA Super Fan Jason Hinson steps forward to help us understand Extended Tasks even better.
My name is Jason Hinson, and over the past couple of years, I’ve been developing a web-based application intended to enhance the experience of playing the Star Trek Adventures RPG created by Modiphius Entertainment. I call my application the Star Trek Adventures Gaming Engine (STAGE).
STAGE started as a way for me to expand my desktop coding skills into the word of the web, and while it’s still a work in progress, it has become a labor of love for me. Of course, I’m not affiliated with Modiphius, and while I’d love to work with them on this, unless they approve any external use of STAGE, the application will remain a tool for my personal use. Still, I enjoy sharing the work and would appreciate any feedback.
I created STAGE to help Game Masters and players keep up with many aspects of the rules and game mechanics in Star Trek Adventures (STA) using an attractive graphical interface. The application isn’t intended to change the interactive nature of a desktop Role Playing Game like STA, but simply to enhance the experience.
I want STAGE to eventually handle all aspects of the game mechanics. Currently, users can log into their account and have access to their library of Games, Characters, Equipment, Spaceframes, and Starships. Game Masters can create a game, adding Characters and Starships from their library. In the future, I intend to incorporate the building of campaigns/adventures with Acts and Scenes in a WYSIWYG interface complete with uploaded imagery. The GM can then make a game public and invite other players to join.
I created STAGE to help Game Masters and players keep up with many aspects of the rules and game mechanics in Star Trek Adventures (STA) using an attractive graphical interface.
Once a GM Launches the game, their players can enter the session, and from there they can conduct their campaign. Currently, the application supports rules for Tasks, Opposed Tasks, and Extended Tasks. The GM can design one of these Activities, launch it, and players can follow the instructions to play through each Activity. One of the key tenants of STAGE is that the GM is always in control – so the GM can modify just about any aspect of the Activity as needed.
To help showcase the STAGE interface, I create a video showing the GM playing through a complete Extended Task. Normally, the GM would launch the activity and the player would play through it, but it was easier to keep it all in one window and let the GM act as the player for the demonstration. If you pause at different points, you can get an idea of everything STAGE is doing to keep up with the game mechanics.
I am currently working on several next-step additions, including fully implementing Character Injuries; player-manipulation of Starship power, shields, and breaches; and adding all the mechanics for Combat Activities – starting with personal combat.
To date, I’ve written a couple of hundreds of thousands of lines of code for STAGE, and there’s still a ways to go. As I said, It’s a labor of love. I’ve spent so much of my free time developing the application, I haven’t had time to actually play through a game with it, but I enjoy many online opportunities to watch STA gameplay, and that keeps me motivated.
If you’re affiliated with Modiphius and you’re reading this, I’d love to hear from the company on its thoughts about my work.
About me: I developed a love for science fiction early in life, which led me to an academic pursuit of actual science – I have a Ph.D. in Physics from Purdue University, and I currently do analysis work for the US military. My first experience with a Star Trek RPG was the FASA version back in the day. Within a year of Modiphius releasing Star Trek Adventures, I came across the game and became intrigued with their 2d20 system. But what really got my attention was the “TV Series” feel of the gameplay. The system seemed to capture that story-telling aspect of the show by incorporating Acts and Scenes along with Character-growing mechanics like Values and Focuses. A good game of Star Trek Adventures can feel like a good episode of Star Trek, and I find that aspect of Modiphius’s offering quite entertaining and enjoyable.
Continuing Mission has done so much to support STA that Modiphius wants to give some love back, and so we are pleased to offer this discount code, CMISSION01, which is a 10% off coupon for the STA Starter Set and usable on both the Modiphius UK site and the Modiphius US site.
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So, you have created an application that only you can use. I fail to see the value in this for the community …
Well, I can use it and any players I play with can use it as it is a multi-user web app. I would *love* to be developing it for general use by the STA community, but I don’t know the legalities involved. Again, I’d be pleased to work with Modiphius on this project if they were interested.
if you need a tester or evaluation – I’d love to test it out. we have a regular stream and it would be interesting to see about getting it on screen. if it makes extended tasks easier, i’d use them more often. (i am also excited about tracking player injuries. )
Thank you very much for your offer to be a tester. Right now, I don’t consider the app even in the alpha stage, and I only get a chance to work on it in my spare time, but I will definitely keep you in mind if I get to that point in the development. I might like to have a few “sounding boards” as I often wonder how other players and GMs would like an app like this to handle certain aspects of the game (in case I can make it public one day — which I’d really like to do). For example, should players be able to remove injuries and complications — trusting your players to do so only when the GM agrees — or should I make those functions solely part of the GM interface? I’m not sure a sounding board of one is helpful, but if there were a forum where enough interested people would be willing to pitch in, that might be the best help I could use right now.