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STARDATE

One of the most often debated elements of the Star Trek universe is the proper use and calculation of Stardates. There are a few different schools of thought here, which we will briefly explain, but not get too deep into:


1. New Year = January 1st (Nemesis Calendar)

There are many people who firmly believe that Stardates should be calculated according to the notion that a new "year" in Star Trek time should coincide with a new year in the present. So, when we celebrate a new year on January 1st, the logic follows that the "current" Star Trek year will also increment one, and the Stardate will hit the next 1,000 increment milestone marker (such as 66000.0).

According to this method, January 2013 to December 2013 is equal to an in-game year of 2390, which has Stardates 67000 to 67999.9. This takes into account that Star Trek: Nemesis, which was released at the end of 2002 (11 years ago), was depicted as occurring in 2379 with a Stardate of 56844.9. By that logic, 2003 was equal to 2380 which spanned 57000.0 to 57999.9, so 2013 is equal to 2390, spanning 67000.0 to 67999.9.

Obsidian Fleet, for example, follows this method.


2. New Year = July 1st (Traditional Calendar)

Most episodes of Star Trek adhere to a premise that each season of any given series starts off closer to XX000 (for example, Season 7 of Voyager started on Stardate 54014.4, which was 2377) and ends closer to XX999 (one of the last episodes of Voyager, Season Six, was Stardate 53896.0, which was 2376). Since each show's seasons usually start airing in the fall and end in the spring, many argue that a new "year" should begin around July 1st, for ease of calculating.

This is a bit messy because a new year in Star Trek time starts on our July 1st, but like #1, it does make things easier in the sense that it allows you to simply divide the year into 1000 units, and it fits with most episodes of Star Trek. What's not clear is whether the months remain the same, or whether July 1st (real time) equates to January 1st (game time).

According to this method, which ignores the year (2378) given in the Voyager episode "Homestead," July 2012 to June 2013 is equal to an in-game year of 2389, since twelve years have elapsed between Voyager's end (2001/2377) and the present. The Stardates during that period would be 66000 to 66999.9.

Horizon Fleet, for example, follows this method.


3. Hard Canon

If you sit down and look at the facts presented in most episodes of Star Trek and the movies, you are left with a far more precise method of calculating stardates which allows nearly all measures of time represented in the various series to fit together accurately and without contradicting each other.

The most accurate representation of Stardate calculating by this method can be found on TrekGuide.com here.

According to this method, May 21st, 2390 is Stardate 66000.0, and there are 918.23186 Stardates per year.


Here at Future Fleets, we respect our members' rights to define the Stardates on their simms and in their fleets however they wish. However, for the sake of ease, the game portion of the Future Fleets site will adhere to #2 for the purposes of in-game only Stardate calculations. While #1 would make life easier in general, we prefer to stick to tradition, and unlike method #3, method #2 makes it easier for us to track time and years from launch onward.

NOTE: The Voyager episode "Homestead" is a specific point of contention amongst fans because many believe it threw a monkey wrench in the previously-established calculation of Stardates used up until that time.

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