USS Chuck Norris Change of Command

As of today, Captain Michael Intermeezo has relieved Captain Aurther Winters as Commanding Officer of the USS Chuck Norris. Captain Winters concludes 36 months in command. However, his history with the Chuck Norris goes back much further. As a Lieutenant, he officially joined the sim on June 26, 2012 as Chief Engineer, and then sent his first post on June 28th. He picked up his first award, an MVP, in November of that year. He later became Executive Officer in 2014, and then Commanding Officer in 2020. Along the way, he snagged 12.5 total awards, including 4 MVPs and 3.5 Genesis awards, good for 8th place all-time. He also chaired the 2021 SciWorld Online Convention, for which he was awarded an Ongoing World Community Honor. If there’s one thing that stands out, it’s been Aurther’s loyalty to both the fleet and his sim! Aurther, best of luck with everything and we hope you don’t wander too far!

Captain Intermeezo, welcome to the command team! We know that you have what it takes to lead this wonderful and historical sim to even greater heights.

22nd Anniversary Webcast: Saturday at 5pm Eastern

It’s almost time for our third annual anniversary webcast. Admiral Ken Gillis returns as host, and yes, it will again include real prizes!

Join us on July 8th at 5:00 PM ET (-4) / 10:00 PM BST (+1) in the fleet watch party channel of our Discord server. We’ll be announcing the newest members of the Hall of Fame (in case you missed it!), drawing names from among our monthly award winners over the last year for some real-world prizes, and there might also be a surprise or two.

See you there!

At the movies… with Independence Fleet!

And yet another year of IDF is in the books with our 22nd Anniversary today. To remind you of how old we really are, here’s a quote from last year’s anniversary post:

“On our 22nd Anniversary, we will be further removed from the premiere of the 2009 Star Trek film (May 8, 2009) than IDF’s launch was from the premiere of The Next Generation (September 28, 1987): 14 years, 1 month, 26 days vs. 13 years, 9 months, 6 days.”

Well, here we are! For this year’s celebration, each of our 12 sims created a movie poster to capture their unique essence and feel. We are also very fortunate to have Amanda Rose from RPG Writing, NX-1701-G from Zodiac Fleet, and Beth from Sim Central to judge the entries in three categories: overall image quality, how much does it look like an actual movie poster, and general creativity/originality. Before we get to the posters themselves, we first have an announcement from a special guest:

Now, the 12 movie posters:

And your winners are…

1st Place:

USS Wayfarer
CO: Captain Akeno Misaki
Poster by: Akeno Misaki
2nd Place:

USS Sunfire
CO: Captain Rhenora Kaylen
Poster by: Bonnie Durnell
3rd Place:

USS Eclipse
CO: Captain Aven LaCroix
Poster by: Aven LaCroix
“I’m impressed by the technical skill and originality that went into this poster.”

“If you’re familiar with Anime movie posters, this is spot on.”

“Having anime Trek characters in the mirror universe with the crack showing the Federation and Terran emblems on different sides was brilliant.”
“Of all the posters shared this was the one that actually made me want to join the game in question.”

“Image expertly merged the dinosaur imagery with clear Trek imagery without making them appear distinct.”

“This poster screamed movie poster. I would expect to see this on the wall in some theater. A starship with dinosaurs and big lettering. Well done!”
“I’m not typically a fan of the starship and character posters, but this one spoke to me.”

“I kept wanting to rate this poster higher in my rankings. There’s a lot to like with the faded facial imagery and ship…

…[including] ‘Coming Never,’ which was mildly amusing.”

Congratulations to all three winners, and a special thanks to our judges! However, to quote Kirk from Star Trek III, we’re not finished yet! Here are superlative awards for our other nine games:

Best poster for Seinfeld/Trek crossover

USS Albion
CO: Captain Dick Sprague
Poster by: Akeno Misaki
Some bold judges not to pick this one!

USS Chuck Norris
CO: Captain Aurther Winters
Poster by: Bonnie Durnell
Best poster for past meeting the future

USS Churchill
CO: Captain James Stewart
Poster by: Akeno Misaki
Best poster if you actually watch Picard

USS Eminence
CO: Captain Alex Shepard
Poster by: Akeno Misaki
Best poster for a random trailing light

USS Ganymede
CO: Captain Dyllon McMahon
Poster by: Akeno Misaki
Best poster for a low Earth orbit view

USS Liberty
CO: Captain Kaylia Strenvale
Poster by: Akeno Misaki
Best poster for the IMAX experience

USS Montana
CO: Captain Jackson Adams
Poster by: Bonnie Durnell
Best poster for “Aft torpedoes, fire!!!”

USS Washington
CO: Captain Shran dh’Klar
Poster by: Akeno Misaki
Best poster that could double for Dune

Starbase 80
CO: Captain Kathleen O’Shea
Poster by: Bonnie Durnell

While we’re on the topic of movies, we are now further removed from our July 4, 2001 founding than it was from the premiere of the first Star Trek film Star Trek: The Motion Picture (December 6, 1979): 22 years vs. 21 years, 6 months, 28 days. Feel old yet?

Continuing last year’s tradition, we again have a second video message:

Happy IDF anniversary, everyone!

2023 Hall of Fame Inductees

With yet another July, it is again my great privilege to formally announce the newest members of the Independence Fleet Hall of Fame. Induction is the highest honor this club offers–reserved for those with exemplary service or extraordinary contributions to the fleet, according to the Hall of Fame Charter (pdf). Without further ado, your Hall of Fame Class of 2023 is as follows:

Inducted by Election:

Colonel Steven MayTa Death

of the USS Sanctuary

The longtime Commanding Officer of the Sanctuary, Steven MayTa Death was the fleet’s all-time leader in command months with 89 when he and his sim transferred to sister club UCIP in 2020. He also managed 17 posting titles during his IDF career. Finding his niche by leading offbeat missions, his crew enjoyed their Marine-centric and action-packed storylines. There will never be another MayTa!

Lt. Cmdr. Maryam Syed

of the USS Sunfire

A mainstay of the renaissance era Sunfire, Maryam Syed was an integral part of helping lead the fleet back to its earlier glory days. Her outstanding contributions in-story, affable nature, and excellent recruiting also ensured the Sunfire remained great for many years. Showing superb breadth, she won six total awards, including Rookie of the Month, Best Post, MVP, and the Recruitment award.

Lieutenant Spaardra Tamis

of the USS Sunfire

A first-rate team player, Spaardra Tamis was an indispensable member of both the Sunfire and the fleet. As IDF was reestablishing itself during the renaissance era, her superior posting quantity and wide recruiting efforts were exactly what was needed at the time to jumpstart operations. Of her five total awards, two were for Recruitment and three were for Most Posts.

Inducted by the Veterans Committee:

None this year.

Congratulations to our three 2023 inductees! Thank you for providing a timeless example for us still role playing today to emulate. You will hereby forever be remembered for your extraordinary service to Independence Fleet. Well done! There are now 41 total members of this most exclusive club.

That’s two more inductees from the Sunfire, and our first from the Sanctuary.

Spot Special Commendation Medal 2023

It’s been more than a year since the last major awards were presented. Here is our fourth Special Commendation Medal, which is awarded for achievement above and beyond the call of duty at the crewmember level.

Special Commendation Medal

Awarded to Lieutenant Commander Shoniara T’ghann-Travis (previously known as Shoniara T’ghann Dex before her marriage in-story) of the USS Washington for sustained superior role playing. Using her encyclopedic knowledge of Trek, she effortlessly writes detailed posts and collaborates with others to tell truly immersive stories within the canon. In the nearly two years since her first post on August 19, 2021, she has tallied 9.33 total awards, good for 13th place all-time, which includes one MVP and five Most Posts.

We’ve Gone Plaid!

If you visited our website yesterday, you probably noticed that it looked like it was straight out of 2002 (or 2001?). And you would be right! Using records from the Internet Archive, we reconstructed our Angelfire site from the days of yore using the current fleet line up, creating a mash up of then and now. The simming world was quite different back then–and so were our web development capabilities! In case you missed it, we’ve archived the 2023 retro site here.

But why now? Fast forward to April 14-16, 2011–it was exactly 12 years ago that IDF hosted the first modern SciWorld Online Convention, which incidentally was 12 years after the original SciWorld in 1999. In early 2011, the Simming League was largely dead and the community had drifted apart over the previous few years: Clubs rarely interacted with each other anymore. SciWorld 2011 changed all of that by serving as the genesis for a new era of cooperation and celebration. In addition to SciWorld, we also now also have FallFest, Khitomer, and Babel. SciWorld renewed interest in the Tournament of Simulations and the Simming Prize as well.

On a related note, a few of you have pointed out that we missed our typical April Fools’ Day joke this year. While we can’t go back in time to fix that, we hope this blast from our past was still fun nonetheless. Until next year…

New Sim: USS Eclipse

Less than a month later and we already have another new sim joining us: the USS Eclipse officially launched on January 16, 2023. This is a brand new sim focusing on science and exploration that takes place in a post-Nemesis timeline. Take a look and consider joining today!

USS EclipseNCC-72382
Format: ProseEra: Post-Nemesis
Type: TraditionalClass: Nova
CO: Captain Aven LaCroixJoin!

Welcome to the fleet, Captain LaCroix and crew!

The Record Book Has Been Rewritten

With 2022 in the books, it’s high time we checked in with the latest version of the IDF Record Book over on our About page. As it turns out, we have a new all-time leader in monthly awards. Lieutenant Bonnie “Bon-Bon” Durnell of the USS Sunfire now has a grand total of 29.83 awards, passing the previous leader, Jenna Ramthorne (of a prior version of the Sunfire), who has 24.83. What’s even more incredible, is that both characters are played by the same person!

Best PostFunniest PostGenesisMVPMost PostsMost ImprovedRecruitmentTotal

Prolific across multiple award categories, the two stat lines seem to mirror each other. However, the difference is clearly Durnell’s five plus Funniest Post awards to Ramthorne’s zero. See what adding humor to your game can do! Congratulations to Lieutenant Durnell on this incredible accomplishment!

As it turns out, we have quite a few current or recent members who have moved up leader board since we brought the Awards back for March 2020:

Active Member — received an award within the last year or confirmed to currently be on a sim
Hall of Famer

All characters with five or more total monthly awards

In addition to all those who’ve won awards, I also want to thank each of our sim Commanding Officers for submitting nominations month-in and month-out and to Rear Admiral James “Rook” Mirtoh for running the program and selecting winners. Without their tireless efforts, the awards simply wouldn’t be possible.

I’ve long been of the opinion that the monthly awards are one of the absolute best features of this fleet, and they’re a key bonus that really distinguishes us from other groups out there. The numbers speak for themselves: Through the end of 2022, we have 969 total documented awards presented to 506 different individuals through 1,226 different award records. Each one is permanently part of our continuing history, starting all the way back with the five original awards presented for our very first month of July 2001 going up through today and beyond.

Now it’s time to add your legacy to the story…