A Player Character (PC) is a character owned and written-for by a writer in the group.
A Personal Non-Player Character (PNPC) is a character created and written for a player's own purposes and used regularly in the plot.
- Rajik, my mock cadet
- Nash Blaxland, reporter for the Federation News Service based on Starbase 118
- Gav, a bartender and journeyman currently working his way around the galaxy.
- Kirky Bean, shuttlecraft pilot assigned to USS Resolution
- Didrik Stennes (alternate), from another timeline.
- Deborah T'Kard, investigator for Starfleet Internal Affairs Officer Conduct Division
- Hamsan Dwich (retired)
- Jane van Klaveren (deceased)
A Non-Player Character (NPC) is any character within the game that serves only a plot-related purpose. These characters can be used by any player for any purpose.
- Tina Kuppasoop, security officer assigned to Deep Space 224.
- Sauerkreemin ch'Yves, security officer assigned to Deep Space 224.
- Kalarn'Dura Boops, civilian living on Deep Space 224.
A Mission-Specific Personal Non-Player Character (MSPNPC) is a special PNPC assigned to a specific person for the duration of a mission.
- Da'al Ypartin, featured in Come What May
- Rossk Shes Ar-Dev and Foss Dev-Yem, featured in The Ties That Bind
- Ferzdy, featured in Stranded
- Scrunch, alias Nat Careswell, featured in Cats Among The Pigeons
Improv and simming
I teach and perform improv, and over the years I have found a lot of overlap between the skills of successful improvisers and successful simmers. Here are a few bits and bobs I've collected about improv, which I think are relevant to simming as well:
- Great improv comes from mutual discovery and surprise and the process of one character being affected by the other. It never comes from drawing a bunch of dots on the stage and handing the other actor a crayon and expecting them to connect them in some crazy design you have mapped in your head. —Ben Bowman
- When you play chess, you move your pawn first. You have to. The important pieces are held back, but they’re there. How many chess games will you win if you make a ton of moves without checking what your opponent is doing? Zero. So make one move and check in. And make your next move according to your partner’s first move. Just remember, it’s practically impossible to win without moving those big pieces at some point. And no one wants to see a scene entirely of tiny pawn moves. But your board must balance the other player. Otherwise, one of you is going to get steamrolled. And that’s a bad improv scene. —Ben Bowman
Agreement and acceptance
- We want to avoid conflict, debate and negotiation in our improv scenes. The audience knows we’re making it up – building something from nothing – they don’t want to see us arguing over imagined reality; they want to see us react to an accepted reality. What’s the best way to avoid arguing? Acceptance! Agreeing to a conflict-laden declaration is the easiest way to ensure a scene’s forward momentum. —Patrick Gantz