Science division book NPCs


In the science division book, I noted the science officer notable NPC has a science discipline of 3. This is compared to supporting characters like lab tech and grad student that have science of 4.

Similarly a physician has medicine of 3 compared to a nurse that has medicine of 4.

Is this an error or something else?

NPC can success at tasks with Diff>0
Supporting characters that aren’t controlled by a player can’t (unless your commanding officer uses a “make it so”)
For difficult tasks Supporting characters are relegated to just helping the player

In the core book, it gives instructions on how to make minor, major, and notable NPCs in the GM section. Their Discipline stats match those in the science book.

Notable NPCs get: “Make their most important Discipline a score of 3, with two more Disciplines a score of 2, the next two Disciplines a score of 1, and the last Discipline at 0.”

Supporting Characters are intended to be played by players, and are given better stats: “The character will have Discipline scores of 4, 3, 2, 2, 1, and 1, arranged in any order.”

So the main difference is not their stated role/experience/rank, but whether they will be played by players or the GM.


Good grief. So I can’t use the stats for a supporting character as an NPC because they are too good compared to the stats given in the book for a notable NPC.

What a waste.

I’m really beginning to find this game hard to use.

No one said you can’t. Use what you want. A couple points’ difference here and there aren’t going to break the game.

Of course you can.

Since there’s also the category of Major NPCs and these are a little stronger than Supporting Characters.

In STA, you get 3 sorts of Non-Player Characters and 2 sorts of Player Characters:
Minor NPC < Notable NPC ≈ Supporting Character (PC) < Major NPC ≈ Player Character

See p. 304 of the Core Rules for conversions of Minor→Notable→Major NPC.

Notable NPC → Supporting Character: +3 Attribute points, +5 Discipline points, maybe +1 Focus, -1 Value, -all talents

So, yes, Notable NPC lack some attribute/discipline points and might not have as much focusses like Supporting Characters do, yet they got Talents and a Value.

I really don’t think it would break anything to use Supporting Characters as an NPC. Yes, they are more likely to roll good, but they definetly lack the specialisation and versatility of Notable NPC, if not improved by character development.

I think that one of the good sides of the game is that they try to avoid the Deus Ex Machina NPC that arrives to save the day. The game is about players being the heroes of their game. They could be helped but it’s them that initiate the roll.

Even if it’s unrealistic when they make a transporter roll it’s the engineer that rolls even if he’s in the away team with 1 die of help from the transporter NPC (one of my few NPC with the Captain) and 1 die from the ship

I will add that the Captain even if he’s a NPC he was made with normal player creation because it’s an open space if I got a new player coming in the game.

I try to limit NPC on the player ship, the Captain, the transporter officer, the armory officer that they rescued on a scenario, the EMH and domesticated panthers from another scenario.

If you need that a support character make a difficult roll make a new scene without one player, you don’t see all the series cast on all the scenes, and have that player control the support character, this way your support character also improves.

Experience of player characters is really slow but you can really improve your support characters and by this way you improve your party strength.