Away Team Equipment Packs

I have been in a STA campaign for a little while and have been prompted to the ships XO and I stated that I would like to build Away Team Equipment packs to be available which would included the following:

  • medical first aid
  • air mask
  • flashlight
  • gloves
  • knife (as a tool)
  • water & rations for 2 days
    My group jumped all over me for even suggesting that as it is not true to Star Trek.

I would like to hear the communities thoughts.

Well, I think that depends on your style of play.

That being said, most of said items can (and should be!) procured out of thin air (probably by spending Momentum, cf. p. 183 ff. of the Core Rulebook). That’s how the system’s written to work. Characters on screen in Star Trek possess the items they need, if the plot commands they have access to it and lack them, if the plot commands they don’t.

Starfleet medical personnel can, under normal circumstances (including away missions), always access a standard medkit (cf. pages 196, 183 of the Core Rulebook).

Regarding the rest of your Equipment packs: If you plan on giving them out to every away team as a standard regardless per mission – I’d say your group is right, that’s not very true to on-screen Star Trek.
If you, in contrast, just want to declare that you, in a circumstance you would need one of said items, want to obtain it out of said packs – well, no problem in the stricter sense.

Yet, I, personally, would say: No need to bother!
If you’re on a mission with a shuttle, just equip yourself out of the shuttle’s storage and/or with the shuttle’s replicator. No need to pre-define what’s in the shuttle, that’s what Opportunity Cost is for (if needed, if you’ve got the time, all of these items will be free to procure on a standard shuttle under normal circumstances).
If you’re on a standard away team mission, just have someone beam down equipment you need. The smaller items might just be conveniently stowed in one of your pockets (I’m looking at the gloves, the flashlight or the knife).
If you’re on an away mission where you will be on your own for a certain amount of time, you will probably have some bagpacks. Again, no need to pre-define whats in said bagpacks, that’s what Opportunity Cost is for (if you aren’t considered to simply bring an item if it’s reasonable you brought it).

Star Trek Adventures is not written to be a Zombie Survival Game where planning and resource-management is a crucial part of the game. In the series, Starfleet personnel most of the time has access to the items they need and it’s part of a plot, if they don’t. Rules on equipment and obtaining items reflect that. If it’s reasonable you can just grab an item you need (such as a weapon, conveniently hidden under your console), simply do so (and maybe pay Opportunity and/or Escalation cost). If simply grabbing the item would be a bit far-fetched, you would need to create an opportunity to acquire these items, first. If it’s reasonable you can acquire the item with a bit of work/improvisation, it should be no problem. 2 Momentum for the opportunity, plus Opportunity and maybe escalation cost. Don’t bother with the contents of your away team equipment pack. If you need any one of these items or something not included in your list, simply declare it’s part of the standard away team equipment pack. If all agree it’s reasonable that there is such an item in the shuttle/bagpack the away team brought – fine, you now have it and can proceed with the Drama STA is written to be revolving around. :slight_smile:

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I would generally agree that it’s not ‘true to Star Trek’ to have away teams carry stuff like that when they beam down. Phaser, tricorder, communicator, and maybe a doctor/engineering/science kit. But you wording “to be available” could be interpreted as ‘ready for the ship to beam down if needed.’ Which makes sense, to have special packs stashed in the transporter room.

The thing is, as MajorX notes, any time characters need flashlights in the show, they just have them. And they’re not going to need an air mask if they’re beaming down normally, because the ship’s scanners have already told them everything’s fine.

Star Trek is not strictly a true-to-life military simulation, it is a story. So if an away team is in a situation where they need rations, if they had your kit the writers would just jump to 2 days later when the rations are running out. Or in a situation where they need a mask, one of the masks they already brought would break, forcing the away team to work around poisonous air or needing a mask anyway.


I feel that jumping over someone for it not being true to Star Trek is a bit of an overreaction.

It is kind of in contravention of the rules. Like, several of those items have Opportunity Costs, and you’re essentially noping those costs by having them be omnipresent. If you mean stowed in the shuttlecraft, then sure…but they’re already there as standard as emergency supplies. The Opportunity Cost is retrieving them from the shuttle, getting extras beamed down, going out of your way to grab them before leaving, etc.

In terms of harmony with the show, yeah, it’s slightly out. They have the ability to make them on demand, so they don’t generally carry that stuff around. Just like I don’t carry a screwdriver around - if I end up needing one, there’s generally one nearby anyway (eg in at a friend’s house). They don’t really carry that stuff with them unless they foresee a need like transporters don’t work, etc. Hence, Opportunity Cost.

Still, I wouldn’t get on your back about it. Just a gentle reminder that we shouldn’t be bypassing costs, and those packs cost a lot.


Oh, the look on the Transporter Chief’s face when beaming down your fleshlight. :slight_smile:

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Would probably be this look here. :smiley:

Thanks for spotting. BUT! Just so convenient, I explicitly wrote that these specific items would be stowed away in pockets and not beamed down! :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

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Some Trek uniforms don’t have pockets.

Equipment packs, sure go for it. Doesn’t really fit what we see on the many series, but maybe your ship’s mission parameters make it make sense to have go-bags ready to… go when needed.

Otherwise, just lean into the momentum and opportunity costs built into the game and have the gear you need when you need it. It’s all secondary to the characters and narrative anyway.

I guess don’t forget the telescoping 10’ pole and replicated caltrop dispenser. :wink:


Star Trek uniform have pockets, they are just well hidden and not visible because of future tech design because Roddenberry didn’t like zippers (and they add some after his death) and pockets.
Of course you have the item you want, just spend 1 momentum. And if the item is appropriate for the mission it’s free. The number of available items is limited because the prop department don’t have an infinite budget. And the replicated caltrop dispenser adds threat too (and need an engineer to work on it because it’s not a standard issue)