21st Anniversary Webcast Recap

First, thank you to our very own Ken Gillis for hosting the anniversary webcast yesterday. An outstanding show, just like last year! He introduced our Hall of Fame class of 2022 and played two special videos. Unfortunately, those who missed it will have to wait until our official anniversary blog post tomorrow. However, we can now share who the winners of our annual prize drawing were. Here’s how it worked:

Everyone who won a monthly award over the last year had their name added to the big wheel. 1 award = 1 entry. All award fractions were rounded up. Then time to spin the wheel!

The three winners were:

  1. Lieutenant JG Hank Solomon of the USS Eminence
  2. Captain Akeno Misaki of the USS Wayfarer
  3. Lieutenant JG Patra Rommel of the USS Wayfarer

In order, they will have their choice from among the following three prizes:

From left to right: Runabout from Deep Space Nine, Horga’hn (3D print by Admiral Gillis), Phaser from The Next Generation

Congratulations to all three! Should anyone not be able to provide a US mailing address, they will be given a gift certificate for their country of residence and we’ll draw a replacement winner.

April Fools’ 2022: Imperial Defense Fleet

With a long a illustrious history in the simming community, Independence Fleet has been a bedrock for quality Star Trek role playing for over twenty years. Although IDF’s leadership works hard to ensure our members have several games to suit their role playing needs, we also know how to have fun, and what better day to enjoy our brand of humor than on April’s Fools’ Day. For those of you who have been part of IDF for a while, you know that April Fools’ Day jokes have become a pretty big tradition around here.  We’ve done World Wide Sims, the classic 1990s simming website, and Super Space Command 3000.  Actually, we’ve done Super Space Command 3000 three different times–no one said we were original!  For those of you new to IDF this year, your introduction was our, er, rebranding where we took on a new menacing moniker.

Additionally, what we included for our humorous 2022 was the spectacular trial and banishment of our fleet CO–this is simming after all!  And then added for good measure, a good ole’ useless administrative burden for sim COs, complete with threats of facing JAG.  All in good humor, but these whimsical jokes mirror the real-life history of dozens of simming fleets (sadly including even this one at times), fleet XO Ken Gillis overthrew fleet CO Charles Star and installed Joseph “Stealth” Carroll as his JAG Magistrate…  just in case you missed it! These were all great ‘Easter eggs’ for those of you who have been around the community and witnessed some of the ludicrous events that have unfolded in past years outside of IDF.

Here are some of actual statements Admiral Star received in response to the gag:

  • “Loving this year’s prank by the way! I was hoping Super Space Command 3000 would have made a come back.”
  • “Were you kicked out of Independence fleet?” 
  •  “Are you really in trouble?”
  • “Hahaha you got me.”
  • “Let me know if you need any help.”
  • “Apparently I was fooled by Ken on April fools day. He got me good!”
  • “What happened?”
  • “I just remembered what day it is. April 1st.”

And here are a few of the quotes from our Discord server:

  • “Qapla!”
  • “Wrong Empire, but you got the spirit!”
  • Long live the Empire…”
  • “I see we have a new Grand Admiral. I guess it was going to happen eventually.”
  • “JAG got more positions [open], or just the Director?
  • “I am always looking for Inquisitors.”
  • “Long Live the new IDF Empire!! I expect sims that post less than 300 posts a month will be immediately shut down and mothballed? Right?”
  • “You had me going for a while there.”
  • “I was around IDF in 2003 when Federal Appeals Court Judge, Lance Stiffler, had ruled that due to copyright law IDF could no longer be affiliated with ‘Star Trek’ and so had to change its name to Super Space Command 3000. I can’t believe that joke is almost 20 years old now!”

Thank you again to Ken Gillis for planning and organizing this year’s joke, and a special thanks to Charles Star and Joseph “Stealth” Carroll for playing along and being great sports. On behalf of the Imperial Defense Fleet, I hope everyone else enjoyed it! I can’t wait to see what tomfoolery that is in store for 2023 and remember: “Forget the ring! The ring is bupkis! I found it in a Cracker Jack box!

21st Anniversary Webcast: July 2nd at Noon Eastern

After the rave reviews following last year’s 20th Anniversary Webcast, we decided to do it again this year. Admiral Ken Gillis will return as host, and yes, it will again include prizes!

Join us on July 2nd at 12:00 PM ET (-4) / 5:00 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, drawing names from among our monthly award winners over the last year for some real-world prizes, and we may also have a surprise or two.

See you there!

Awards Time: 2022

It’s been 20 months since we last presented individual major awards. In that time, our fleet has seen a lot of growth and set the bar high in a number of areas. It’s also been just over two years since we launched our new website and URL. Bottom line, it’s high time to recognize a few of the individuals who helped make all of this happen.

I’m also very proud to announce the creation of the Special Commendation Medal, which will be awarded for achievement above and beyond the call of duty at the crewmember level. With that in mind, I hereby issue the following seven citations:

The Special Commendation Medal is awarded for achievement above and beyond the call of duty at the crewmember level.

Special Commendation Medal

Awarded to Lieutenant Aurora Vali of the USS Sunfire for outstanding role playing. She is the epitome of the quiet, reliable, and drama free achiever. A true team player, she is considerate of others, puts forth great ideas to the command, and introduces excellent plot twists for others to use–she does all the little things that others often don’t see.

Awarded to Lieutenant Bonnie “Bon-Bon” Durnell of the USS Sunfire for outstanding writing. A role playing force of nature, she’s already second all-time with 20.43 total awards and one of the greatest simmers in IDF’s history. Durnell continues to produce posts of such high quality that one could mistake them for production level Trek.

Awarded to Commander Jonathan Grayson of the USS Washington for outstanding role playing leadership. He’s been the Executive Officer of the Washington for several years now, understanding the nuances of the Captain’s guidance and balancing it with a great pulse on the crew. He’s an excellent mentor, coordinator, and writer to boot.

The Command Excellence Medal is awarded for achievement above and beyond the call of duty at the sim Commanding Officer level.

Command Excellence Medal

Awarded to Captain Dick Sprague for commanding 10 different IDF sims, including the USS Chuck Norris and USS Albion. Sprague not only holds the record for most commands, but also the most Genesis Awards (11). In addition, he ranks third all-time among sim COs for total posts (3,198). A thoroughly unconventional CO, his sims are always unique.

Awarded to Captain Rhenora Kaylan for commanding the USS Sunfire and USS Liberty. Arguably the greatest sim Commanding Officer in IDF history, her outstanding games have garnered community wide recognition, including the 2010 Simming Prize. Incredibly, she also ranks first all-time among COs in both total posts (8,195) and posting titles (39).

The Distinguished Service Medal is awarded for achievement above and beyond the call of duty at the Admiralty level.

Distinguished Service Medal

Awarded to Rear Admiral James “Rook” Mirtoh for serving as Director of Personnel from February 2020 through today. He has efficiently ensured that IDF regularly recognizes its crewmembers for their excellence in role playing, a feature not seen in many other fleets. He is always fair and his efforts showcase the best IDF has to offer.

Awarded to Admiral Ken Gillis for serving as Chief of Technology and Fleet Executive Officer from July 2020 through today. Not only does he expertly manage the fleet’s entire technology stack, but his wisdom and guidance in other areas of fleet operations have proven invaluable. He is the best fleet XO in simming, hands down.

Monthly Awards: July 2021

Last month may have been the earliest we’ve ever gotten the monthly awards out. This month, well, may be the latest. My apologies!

Speaking of last month, I want to offer my sincere thanks to Admirals Charles Star and Ken Gillis for all the hard work they put into our epic 20th anniversary. They hosted two really excellent events: the Science Fiction Trivia Day & Special Webcast, both which had real prizes… unlike these awards!

We also released two incredible products, a 20-page anniversary almanac & a congratulatory video message from Jonathan Frakes. What other fleet does that for its members?? That’s right, none! If you haven’t checked them out yet, do yourself a favor and do so now.

As we embark this month on our second 20 years, I think back to my earliest days in IDF. I wasn’t there for the fleet’s launch, but I joined soon after in October 2001 on the USS Washington. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…” I had no idea back then what I was getting myself into, but golly has it been fun! Enough on me, time for the awards:

Best Post (Single Author)

Lt. Bonnie “Bon-Bon” Durnell
Computer Systems Specialist
USS Sunfire

For “Except for Monday”

Nice recap of events and a good bit of character development to boot!

Best Post (Joint Post)

Capt. Shran dh’Klar & Cmdr. Jonathan Grayson & Cmdr. Samantha Howard & Ens. James Phoenix
CO / XO / CMO / TO
USS Washington

For “Boom Town”

Lots of action, lots of emotion, and some all around great Trek. Very good integration between contributions makes this seem like seamless writing as opposed to lots of different people tacking on to each other’s posts.


Funniest Post

Lt. Dean House & Capt. Rhenora Kaylen & Lt. Bonnie “Bon-Bon” Durnell & Lt. JG Avarak
CTO / CO / CSS / CSO
USS Sunfire

For “Weapons Go Boom! Pt 2”

Tactical map that looks like it was drawn by a three year old? Awesome.


Genesis

None this month.


MVP

Lt. Bonnie “Bon-Bon” Durnell
Computer Systems Specialist
USS Sunfire

Another great month for the Sunfire, in no small part the work of Lt. Durnell, who took an idea and wrapped it into a myriad of stories that encompass every other member of the crew. The result: extremely well written collaborative stories.


Most Posts

Lt. Bonnie “Bon-Bon” Durnell
Computer Systems Specialist
USS Sunfire

For writing 31 posts.


Most Improved

Lieutenant Aurora Vali
Chief Counselor
USS Sunfire

A great month for Lt. Vali. She doubled her posts from the previous month and added some absolutely stellar additions to some joint posts.


Rookie of the Month

Master Chief Petty Officer Alake Van Der Luan
Master-at-Arms
USS Eminence

The Eminence’s new Master at Arms introduced himself to the rest of the crew and set himself up well for his upcoming first full month on the ship.


Recruitment

None this month.


… and the Adventure continues…

Awards… For Monthly Awards!

Wow, what a 20th Anniversary Webcast! It was so awesome that I think we have a new tradition here in this fleet. Our very own Admiral Ken Gillis hosted the event, where he introduced the Hall of Fame class of 2021 and awarded prizes to three people from among our monthly award winners. If you missed it, you’ll have to wait until tomorrow to see the Hall of Fame inductees. However, I can give a quick recap of the prize drawing.

First, here are the prizes:

Next, the names of the monthly award winners were added to the big wheel. Players received a spot on the wheel for each award they won dating back to March 2020 (award fractions were rounded up):

The three winners were…

Captain Aurther Winters of the USS Chuck Norris

Lieutenant J’goss Yass G’odoss, also of the USS Chuck Norris

and Chief Petty Officer Remal Kajun of the USS Sunfire

Congratulations to all three! And thank you again to Ken for hosting and putting this on. Bravo!

Please stay tuned for more anniversary news tomorrow…

EDIT: Due to our current embargo on shipping goods to Canada, Aurther Winters will instead be getting a Tim Hortons gift card as a consolation. Also, Remal Kajun has offered to donate his prize. As such, we drew two more winners: Lieutenant Dean House of the USS Sunfire & Lt. Cmdr. T’Ponga Shemara of the USS Montana. Enjoy the prizes!

SciWorld 2021

Join us this Saturday, June 12th, at 11:30 AM EDT (-4) / 4:30 pm BST (+1) for the 2021 SciWorld Online Convention. Chair Aurther Winters, Fleet XO Ken Gillis, and many others have put in a lot of hours to make this an extra special event this year. After the 11:30 opening ceremony, we have seven hours of provocative discussions, interactive trivia games, and live role playing planned.

Since we’re this year’s host, you get a sneak peak at the official opening ceremony video:

This will be the 19th SciWorld, and the third hosted by IDF. The first SciWorld was held all the way back in 1999. And just to see how far we’ve come over the years, here’s the opening video from the first modern SciWorld, which we hosted in 2011:

See you this Saturday at SciWorld XIX!

=/\=INDEPENDENCE FLEET HOME PAGE=/\=

If you stumbled across our website last Thursday, you might have seen something a bit peculiar. In case you missed it, we’ve archived it here.

The prototypical 1990s simming webpage, complete with animated gifs, a repeating background, and way too many Admirals was the brainchild of our Fleet XO and Chief of Technology Ken Gillis. As most of you know, IDF didn’t actually exist back then as it was founded in 2001. However, some of our members today got their starts back in the 90’s.

As with our Super Space Command 3000 gag last year, we hope you enjoyed this too. Well done, Admiral Gillis!

Monthly Awards: October 2020

It’s awards time again! Congratulations to all of our October winners below:

Best Post

Lt. Cmdr. Shylow Vitari
Chief Intelligence Officer
USS Liberty

For “Like a Glove”
With strangely compelling imagery, this is a nicely written post describing things and spaces on a starship I’ve never seen before. Well done!


Funniest Post

Cmdr. Samantha Howard
Chief Medical Officer
USS Washington

For “The War”
A blood curdling scream and an undignified string of something. This one has funny written all over it.


Genesis

Captain Shran dh’Klar
Commanding Officer
USS Washington

For “Appearances are Deceiving”
A nice way to get the ship and crew into action.


MVP

Lt. Cmdr. Ech’am G’ginloss
Chief Engineering Officer
USS Chuck Norris

Leading his ship in total posts, G’ginloss continued to keep things interesting with some excellent ones about trying to keep the USS Chuck Norris together while in the heat of battle. Great writing, a nice amount of joint posts, and star for the crew.


Most Posts

Lt. Bonnie “Bon-Bon” Durnell
Computer Systems Specialist
USS Liberty

For writing 13 posts.


Most Improved

Lt. T’Strella Drake
Chief Diplomatic Officer
USS Liberty

T’Strella increased her post count from 3 to 8, played a major role in the current storyline, and threw an interesting curve ball to boot. All in all, a massive leap in overall participation.


Rookie of the Month

Lt. J’goss Yass G’odoss
Chief Flight Control Officer
USS Chuck Norris

G’odoss took the initiative to create new plot lines, joint posts, and multiple interesting takes in addition to tying for the sim lead in totals posts. His performance continues to increase.


Recruitment

Savar cha’Salik hei-Surak Talek-sen-deen
Executive Officer
USS Liberty

The Commander recruited to the sim one new player, who has already begun making solid contributions to the game.


In other news, our fleet XO Admiral Ken Gillis was awarded the Ongoing Worlds Community Honor for his efforts with FallFest. Congratulations, Admiral, and thank you to everyone who had a role in putting on an outstanding FallFest.

This is why we sim! Keep it coming!

Today may be Friday the 13th, but tomorrow is FallFest; Sorry, we can’t do anything about the 2020 part

That’s right–join us tomorrow at 11:00 am Eastern for the FallFest X opening ceremonies. Our fleet XO Ken Gillis and friends AlexM & Amethyst from Pegasus Fleet have put together an absolutely fantastic schedule of events with an outstanding panel of hosts. It’ll be 8+ hours of simming and role playing fun!

Everything will happen in chat rooms in the FallFest Discord Server–be sure to sign up early so you don’t miss anything. And, of course, don’t forget about my Star Trek Trivia and Star Trek/Role Playing Family Feud games. These are must attends!

FallFest is a unique event, open to all simmers and online role players, regardless of rank or club affiliation. It’s where we all come together as a community to share ideas, energy, and fun! Independence Fleet and the Simming League held the first FallFest back in 2011. Originally intended to be a mini-SciWorld more friendly to European time zones, it has since grown into much, much more. OngoingWorlds has been the caretaker since 2012, although TNU Project will be taking the lead for organizing in 2021 and beyond.

See you tomorrow at FallFest 2020!