Intelligence Officer Simming Guide/Becoming Agent X

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Guide To The Intelligence Duty Post
Written by Brayden Jorey

Chapter 1Chapter 2Chapter 3Chapter 4

1.0 Becoming Agent X
There are a few things that I would recommend before moving on the path toward playing an Intelligence Officer. The first part is about character background and development. In order to give you the best illustration possible, I will use my own character, Brayden Jorey, as example. The second half will deal more specifically with playing an Intelligence Officer.

1.1 Character Background

Simming, when you boil it down, is about characters and stories. That is why it is so important to decide what kind of stories you want to tell. Ever since watching TNG as a kid I have always found myself drawn to Betazoids. The Deanna Troi character was my first introduction to this species, but it was Lwaxanna Troi that sparked my imagination. She made me wonder about Betazoid culture, history, religion, social norms, technology, and everything and anything else that might make them different from humans. The idea of a species based on complete openness and honesty because of their the natural telepathic and empathic gifts was intriguing to me. So that was my initial inspiration. I wanted to tell the story of Betazed and Betazoids through my character.

Rather than plan out my Starfleet career and the story to come, I focused on creating a past. I gave him parents and grandparents with their own history and personality. I used that as inspiration to describe what his childhood and adolescence would have been like. I made sure to include major events from Star Trek canonical history - like the Battle of Betazed. Soon I had a general story of where Brayden Jorey came from, but I felt that I still needed more.

I decided that Brayden Jorey was going to be a Betazoid warrior of great faith. I studied the wiki and discovered elements of Betazoid religion and fighting-styles. I made this a central part of his childhood and adolescence. This inspired me to create a friend for him, Koroth, a Klingon he would meet in his early childhood that would be a constant in his life. Eventually, Koroth would grow up and become my character’s Imzadi and first love. This relationship, like his family, had an impact on how I saw my character’s personality, goals, drives, talents, and so on.

Even before I passed the academy and was assigned to my first ship, Brayden Jorey was nearly like a real person to me. I decided that he would major in Tactical at the academy and minor in Helm and Intelligence. During those initial sims as part of the fleet’s academy training, I quickly realized how difficult it was to find his ‘voice’. Dialogue, actions, and thoughts felt laboured and unnatural. When I was assigned to my first ship I decided that his personality would take inspiration from a combination of Lwaxxana Troi and Tasha Yar. This helped immensely in discovering and developing a ‘voice’ for this character.

Finally, I have continued to take any and every opportunity to further develop his history through writing joint-post (JP’s) with other players. For example, after posting in the Lambda Alliance part of the forums, the author of Greir Reinard agreed to write up a few JP’s about our character’s having a romantic affair. We set it at Starfleet Academy while my character was a cadet and his was a guest lecturer. In writing those posts I was able to add to Jorey’s background by adding a group of academy friends for Jorey, a nickname, activities and interests he liked, and really developed a stronger personality. After, returning to my normal ship sims, I realized that it was not only becoming easier to write for this character, but it was becoming much more enjoyable. Frankly, my writing got a heck of a lot better too! Through JP’s I have told stories of his family life, his fears and nightmares, life on Betazoid post Dominion War, and many other aspects that have expanded his history, given life to his personality, and made ‘being’ Brayden Jorey so much more fulfilling.

So, from what I have learned, here are my five for your character:

5 Tips for Creating, Developing, and/or Improving Your Character:
  1. Come up with some ideas of what kind of stories you want to tell.
  2. Create a history for your character with plenty of details.
  3. Try to place that history within Star Trek canon.
  4. Pick a character or two to emulate when you first start simming.
  5. Find opportunities to further your background in special JP’s or Flashbacks.

1.2 Duty Post - Intelligence Officer

So Jorey was assigned to his first ship as a Helmsman. He moved on to become the Chief Helm Officer, then he organized and commanded a Fighter Wing, then became the Chief of Security and Tactical. Eventually, the ship he had served on was decommissioned and he was transferred to a new ship where he was going to be the Chief of Security. However, an opportunity opened up on a new ship when their Chief Intelligence Officer went on a leave of absence. I jumped at the chance to make the transition to intelligence.

At this point, you may be wondering why move from Security to Intelligence. For me it’s as simple as that I think the character Brayden Jorey would be well suited for it in many ways, while being challenging for him in other ways. The added bonus is that I think playing an Intelligence Officer will lend itself to the stories of intrigue, mystery, and social games that I have come to enjoy writing with this character. So the decision was made - Brayden Jorey was going to become an Intelligence Officer.

The rest of this guide is the accumulation of a month of research and reflection before actually making the change. The ship I was on was moving into a shore leave and the other ship was finishing up a mission. So I took a month to research ‘Intelligence’ and write a series of sims depicting my character going through a month of intensive retraining at Starbase 118 while I waited to transfer to the new ship. I named the series “Becoming Agent X”.

The first decision that needed to be made was what kind of Intelligence Officer was Brayden Jorey going to be? Intelligence seems to encompass a bit from every other role. There’s the tech heavy engineering type, the physical assassin security type, the manipulative social counsellor/diplomatic type, the behind-the-scenes research science/medical type, and the putting-it-all-together tactical type. In truth there are tons of other combinations, some I considered, and surely some I didn’t even think of! In the end, I decided that it made the most sense for my character to become a HUMINT specialist. Not only because of his background, but also for the kind of stories I wanted to tell. So keep that in mind when you are deciding what kind of Intelligence Officer you want to be.

1.3 A Quick Note On SFI

Reading up and chatting with fleetmates about the Intelligence Duty Post in SB118, one major issue seemed to come up more often than others. It seems that the role of SFI (Starfleet Intelligence) within Starfleet has been confused. This has lead some Intel Officers to think that they exist outside of Starfleet Command, their Captain, and their ship. Hopefully, you can immediately recognize that such a perspective is not only wrong, but harmful to the reputation of the Intelligence Duty Post.

Here’s the deal. Starfleet Intelligence should be seen as no different than Starfleet Medical, Starfleet Corps of Engineers, or the Starfleet Marine Corps. They are not a separate entity, but a subdivision of Starfleet Command. They serve a unique function, but they serve Starfleet. That means you serve your Captain and follow the chain of command. No exceptions. Oh, and if you’re thinking about Section 31… stop! In the SB118, playing Section 31 characters is strictly prohibited. Plain and simple.

Mission Specialist Helm/Com/Ops Engineer Science Officer Medical Officer Nurse
Intelligence Officer Security Officer Tactical Officer Marine Counselor Civilian
Duty Posts