Rank advancement

Ive got a group of players that are starting a campaign as newly graduated Ensigns. Whats the proper way or even the easiest way to handle promotions?

When would it be appropriate?

The proper way would be to use the new Reputation system from the Klingon/Tricorder books. There characters can spend earned Acclaim to get a promotion (among other stuff).

1 Like

In the Core Rulebook, a mechanic is presented via the reputation mechanic. The reputation system is explain in p140-142. P142 explains that if a character already has a reputation of 15 or higher and is about to increase their reputation, then they can be offered a promotion by the captain. They cannot be offered a promotion to captain by the captain though, the Admirality does this (same principle I suppose) and they take a posting elsewhere - the character is effectively taken out of play. Promotions may be refused.

And if the ensign is named Harry Kim he will not be promoted, no, nay, never.


Unfortunately, the reputation system in the Core Rulebook is somewhat broken, from what I can see. If a character has a high reputation (let’s say it gets to 15) then it is statistically more and more likely that they will accumulate even higher (as you the current Reputation is the target number for gaining new Reputation) such that likely it happens every episode and they are offered a promotion every episode when they hit 20. Likewise if a character develops a low reputation of, say, 5, it is almost impossible to get out of the hole (Beckett Mariner!). I haven’t seen the (alternative?) rules in Klingon sourcebook. In the case of my campaign, the players and GM examined the core rules and agreed that they were a mature enough set of players to know when an action resulted in a reputational hit or gain for a character which could be reflected in campaign progress (usually with a Milestone).

Ive not played it yet, but that isnhow it reads to me. I’d have thought that once promoted, your reputation would reset. Hence, for every promotion, you have to make the complete journey. It doesn’t seem to say that though and only resets your reputation (or rather, sets it to 9) upon demotion, so the best strategy is to get to 20, then so long as you’re avoiding negative actions, you’ll be promoted most times.

I think I’ll hourserule the reset in. This way, there is also a cost to promotion - you go back to 50:50 chance of winning each roll, and you have to work your way back up to being close to guaranteed to win.

I kinda worked the Spotlight milestones and Arc milestones into my crew’s promotions.
A total of 3 spotlight milestones or 1 Arc milestone could be spent by the Captain to promote someone on their crew (up to Commander) pending GM approval, and a bridge officer could spend 3 spotlight or 1 arc to promote someone under their team, pending Captain and GM approval.
If they want to submit someone else for promotion like say Security chief thinks Helm did an amazing job they could talk to the captain and together spend 3 spotlight milestones (1 from cap, 2 from officer applying) and promote someone else on the ship not in their department, pending GM approval.

None of my players have really wanted to use the spotlight milestones they get so I figured this would be a good way to give them more motivation to earn those.

I may or may not be remembering correctly, but I think one of the Modiphius folks had said in another thread that a Reputation reset was the original intention, but it wasn’t clearly stated in the core book.

In any case, the tricorder box set includes a revised system based on the one in the Klingon core book. The free Klingon character sheets PDF also comes with a Starfleet revision that is close to the one in the tricorder set: you’ll find that here.

Ive also run it as a reset, but its important to note that hitting 20 on the rep doesnt automatically mean a promotion. The CO still has to award the promotion, and it should be a conversation between the players and the GM. Everyone might agree it isn’t the right thing for the character.

In my old campaign I had a captain unwilling to promote and officer because he didnt trust their motives. This made for some interesting drama that was discussed and everyone was happy to play on. (Also theres the Harry Kim scenario).

Plus medals costing rep, etc meant that I very rarely actually had any character promotions when I was running this version of the system

Yeah, I imagine you’re right that the reset was intended to be there. To be honest, I thought it was there until I researched it in response to the OP. Probably just forgot about it while writing it up. I’m surprised they haven’t errata’d it, though.