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Transhuman Star Trek

Nerag

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Is anyone aware of a fan made or "star trek with details filed off" version of Star Trek that looks at technological transformation of humanity in terms of transhuman ideas?

I'm thinking of trying to mash Star Trek together with the Culture series and I'm wondering if anyone has done something like this before.
 

thuryl

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My instinct is that doing this would be harder than it looks: if you take the Federation's brand of morality as presented in the series at face value, there's actually a big conservative streak baked into it, and any kind of technological modification to permanently improve human capabilities, for any reason other than correcting disorders, is a serious crime. The reasons for this are rooted pretty deeply in the Federation's history and values.

That's not to say you couldn't do it, but that doing it is inevitably going to involve looking at the Federation's ethical principles with a critical eye and deciding what to change, and what the consequences of those changes will be.
 

Nerag

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Yes it changes the Federation quite a bit but from my reading the Federation's history has a fair few holes in it, so while it is a large change to the setting's philosophy it shouldn't be too hard to change the nuts and bolts of the setting.

I read all of Shadowjack's 'Federal Space' setting and at the moment I'm considering turning all of the forehead prosthesis aliens into transhuman species. This would make the Borg, Vulcan, Romulan, Bajoran, Batazed, Tellarite Orion etc. transhuman forms.

The true aliens in my setting would be the: Klingon, Tholian, Andorian, Cardassian, Ferengi, Elder and Founder/Diplomat/Warrior (Dominion). They aren't humanoid and in many cases have quite different metabolism, senses, biological requirements etc.

Just wondering if anyone has done their take on a Transhuman Federation?
 
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Bailywolf

bwakbwak
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Bank's Culture can be read as a more technologically logical and more interventionist Federation. You even have forehead aliens (all just called human).

Me, I'd just take transporter and replication tech to their logical conclusion. What they represent is immortality and unlimited self improvement. Every time you transport, your pattern can be refined, enhanced, modified, expanded. Backups are kept scattered across the larger Federation, so if you're killed out in your starship, you get re-lifed no harm no foul. Updates are made every time you transport, and you transport all the time because it's so damned easy. Transport enhancement is a right of all Federation citizens, just as a replication allowance equal to a percentage of all available resources is a citizen's right. Red Shirts die all the time, but it's totally not a big deal. In fact, the red shirt indicates an officer who's had special psychological training which prevents death trauma. They'll happily sacrifice themselves for the mission. "Sir, I'll get close and when it hits me with that subspace flux beam, we can get the frequency". Travel between systems is easy via subspace transport beams. Nobody has any issue with the 'transporter is suicide machine' because it reflects antique notions of the nature of consciousness, which the enlightened Federates are so totally over. If Kahn wandered into this century, he'd be hopelessly outclassed by Joe Average. Federation ships are themselves remade as needed with transport and replication tech. A hardened central core contains reactors and transport/replicator arrays. They spawn functions and systems as needed, based on available energy. Engines are spawned for travel, crew quarters as needed, sensor suites, weapons, field projectors, etc. Federation ships look like what the mission needs them to look like, up to the limit of their cores. They're highly adaptive. When they encountered the Borg, they out-evolved them. The primitive cybernetic gestalts of the Borg proved no match for aggressive infiltration and custom-repped aggressor systems. Similarly, the Klingon reliance on solid state pigiron systems instead of Federation variable configuration systems proved their undoing.

-B
 

Nerag

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“The Multiverse.
The Infinite Frontier.
These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise.
Its inter-generational mission: to find strange new dimensions.
To discover new definitions of the meaning of the words: life and sapience.
To boldly go where no one has gone before.”

Major Influences:
Culture Series of novels by the late Mr Banks
Eclipse Phase
Mass Effect

Setting
Era: 26th Century (alternate) 2550-2575
Region: Pan Galactic, Pan-Dimensional
Traveling: Starships, shuttlecraft, Transporters

Crew
Organization: Starfleet
Mission: Exploration/Military
Composition: Primarily Transhumans/AIs

Base
Type: Mobile; USS Enterprise NCC-1701-J (Universe Class Starship)

Technology
Era: 26th Century
Available Technology (Starfleet)

Adversity
Threat and Opposition: “Kelven” Hierarchy, Sphere Builders.
Crisis and Disaster: Numerous and varied.

Feel
Strange Exploration, Alien Realities.

So I was looking at the specifications and capabilities of the Universe-Class starship of the 26th Century. Basically it is huge by Trek standards: over 3 kilometers long, over 2 kilometers high and is intended to be a generational ship. Entire extended families live on board. Furthermore its impulse and warp drive are only part of its propulsion, it is driven by a drive that can take it outside our universe and into other realities. If that isn’t the basis for a campaign I don’t know what is.

Ok so after some reading I discovered that I misread the entry, the Universe Class can’t enter other realities, but I think I’m going to go with my original interpretation. Star Trek loves the idea of alternate worlds, mirror universes and universes with alternative laws of physics, so why not have a ship that can go there at will? Think of the moral implications… should one overthrow the Terran Empire from the Mirror Universe (too late)? Is there some directive governing how the Federation deals with colonizing other universes (no, other than the prime directive)? Where does it all stop (it doesn’t)? The Universe Class Starship is a vast habitat for the crew and it is the base of operations for scientific and exploratory operations. It is a city in space, much more so than the Galaxy Class was. It is the hub of an awful lot of exploration. To assist this is the absolutely mind blowing speed on the Universe Class (Warp 9.999995 or over 18.8 million times the speed of light).

Star Trek has not really embraced transhuman ideas. As far as humanity advanced, the setting never fully developed or investigated the possibilities of cloning, biotechnology, plastic surgery, cybernetics, artificial intelligence, pseudo-intelligence or even aspects of automation.

I wanted to try a version of Trek set in the far future, namely the 26th Century, but with a transhuman slant and a willingness to ignore canon.

In this version of Star Trek, humanity has developed faster than light drives based on the principle of displacing vessels to other realities. This dimensional displacement was incredibly difficult and took several centuries. In this setting there was no World War 3 or Eugenics War.

Dimensional Displacement as a form of FTL has been a factor in all major political blocs’ expansion into space. The most recent form of the propulsion enabled vessels to displace themselves into alternate universes, with potentially different laws of physics. At first this displacement tore the ship from our universe (destroying it from our perspective within our universe), navigated a confusing maze of paths in nearby dimensions, before reinserting itself into our local space/time continuum: essentially creating it from nothing from our perspective. In theory this could result in taking a wrong turn in hyperspace and coming face to face with yourself, without causing a paradox in space/time. If you destroy yourself before you leave, nothing changes because you destroyed yourself when you left anyway (from the universe’s perspective). I’m thinking of keeping Star Trek Tech largely as is but tone down a bit in some ways. Replicators would use nanotech, rather than assembling matter from energy (it is certainly possible for them to turn energy into matter, but dear god it isn’t efficient). Holodecks exist… sort of. They are virtual rather than involving hard light holographs. Hard light technology is possible for this level of technology but it is much easier to connect a Human into a virtual environment. The only serious change I’d institute is teleportation. I would day that this has only recently been developed and is risky and uses large amounts of energy. Teleportation does not convert matter to energy, it transports the subject ‘naked’ through other dimensions. Screwups are common, and will instantly destroy the subject. It is used as an emergency measure and for non-critical cargo.
 

THAC0

Retired User
As a Transhumanism and Star Trek nerd, I encourage this. I've never run a Trek game myself, but I have run some transhumanist sci-fi. I ended up making the most successful of the species a variety of mechanical life (Cybrids from Starseige, Necron, Cybermen and the Borg all being different variations) who were orginally humans and/or machines build by human colonists which have since far exceeded the normal humans. In that setting the Federation-type entity also forbade genomic technoogy (for reasons of control, the Federation is literally kind of left-wing fascism) but that decision has led to them being virtually helpless against Necron tomb worlds, etc.
 

Spikey

Mean Mm-Mm Servant of God
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Excellent idea, Bailywolf.

They spawn functions and systems as needed, based on available energy. ...crew quarters as needed....
I would have thought they wouldn't use crew quarters: apart from away teams, the crew's patterns could be read off the transporter buffers without materialising them and they could be housed in an arbitrarily large virtual environment like Moriarty ended up in. Materialisation would be something you only need to do to leave the ship (unless you were going to another federation ship, in which case you could presumably be transferred and/or copied merely as data).
 
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Sabermane

Proud Fianna knight of hope and peace
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My own Trans-Trek is that most folks live in holographic unimatrixes. Folks are elected command crew from the staff, upgraded with required Starfleet progs, and if needed materialize bodies from the replicatrans.

Most civilians live on massive cloaked saucer sections, at least five miles wide and normally little more than computronium, power supply, and transwarp. Every once in a while your Saucer gets elected to help the Fleet explore strange new worlds and seek out new life. A Fleet Engine ship shows up and merges with your saucer. You get some social esteem, life experiences, and the ability to add a rank to your name, Fleet gets extra manpower and resources from your Mothership.

And yes, these guys are exploring entire universes, multiple dimensions, time/space, and all manners of weirdness. They have entire encyclopedias of classifications for god-like entities.
 

Bailywolf

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Excellent idea, Bailywolf.

I would have thought they wouldn't use crew quarters: apart from away teams, the crew's patterns could be read off the transporter buffers without materialising them and they could be housed in an arbitrarily large virtual environment like Moriarty ended up in. Materialisation would be something you only need to do to leave the ship (unless you were going to another federation ship, in which case you could presumably be transferred and/or copied merely as data).
Federation ships could carry guest sentients, transport abstainers, alien refugees etc. Being able to make crew quarters to house host crew (to shake hands and pass around the cucumber sandwiches) and guests is a significant function for the interventionists Fed.
 
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