Author Topic: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17  (Read 4298 times)

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Offline Steve Walmsley

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NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« on: April 18, 2011, 05:09:31 AM »
5th March 2040
The wreck of a Goavelha construction ship appears one point eight billion kilometers from the Gorshkov primary, near the last known location of Behemoth 001. The huge alien ship, which recently passed out of passive sensor range of the Soviet stealth scout Okean, appears to have run down its quarry.

11th March 2040
Chiang Transport Limited, a second Chinese shipping line, is formed in the Sol system. The existing line, Mao Trading, now has two freighters and one colony ship in service.

25th March 2040
Okean detects the Behemoth heading back towards Gorshkov II. Why it spent so long in the outer system after destroying the construction ship is unknown

25th April 2040
The Soviet Union completes salvage operations in the Zhukov system. A substantial number of components from Goavelha ships have been transported to Earth and Novaya Zemlya for analysis, including 25cm Plasma Carronades from the Freya and Hodur class ships. With the exception of the carronades, none of the Goavelha components incorporated any technology beyond that of the Soviet Union.

26th April 2040
Ongoing terraforming operations on the Eridani colony of New Horizon have resulted in the extensive ice caps melting and a rapid rise in surface temperature from -27C to +10C. As the atmosphere is already breathable, New Horizon becomes the second ideal habitable world in the Tau Ceti system, the other being New Plymouth, and the sixth in the Republic as a whole. Terraforming operations will now move outside the two key home systems of the Eridani Republic for the first time. The first target world is TW Piscis Austrini II. The planet has a breathable atmosphere but a surface temperature of -52C, which results in a colony cost of 2.35. While not the easiest of the available terraforming options, it does have some advantages.

When first discovered, TW Piscis Austrini II was guarded by Golem warships and orbital bases. The last of these were finally eliminated in April 2036 and a subsequent geological survey found a small alien ruin on a planet, along with deposits of every type of Trans-Newtonian mineral, albeit at minimal accessibility with the exception of Duranium. A small colony of 350,000 has already been established, housed in restored alien biodomes, and further colonization will take place once the operation to evacuate the former NATO populations from Earth has been completed. TW Piscis Austrini is adjacent to Heintz 299, which has eight jump points and will be the centre of future exploration efforts. The maintenance base established in that system will be moved to TW Piscis Austrini II as soon as possible.

6th May 2040
The Eridani Republic begins production of a new anti-ship missile; the BGM-12A Prometheus. The BGM-12A will eventually replace the various models of the AGM-1 Sabre as the primary anti-ship missile for both fighter and shipboard launch. To ensure backward compatibility with the latest Sabres, the Prometheus has the same 45,000 km/s speed as the AGM-1D and AGM-1E, allowing coordinated salvos that contain all three missile types. It also has the same ninety million kilometer maximum range as the AGM-1E. The defining characteristic of the new missile is the first onboard active sensor for any missile in the Eridani inventory. Until now, such a capability has been restricted to much larger missiles, such as the Soviet Garpun series. The active sensor of the BGM-12A Prometheus will allow it to home in on any ship of 3000 tons or greater within a half a million kilometer radius. Smaller ships will be detectable at shorter ranges. Of course the onboard sensor will only be necessary if the original target of the missile is destroyed or the fire control on the launching ship is damaged. Given that almost ten thousand Sabre anti-ship missiles of various types are currently in service with the Eridani Republican Navy or in planetary storage, it will be a long time before they are eclipsed by the Prometheus.

BGM-12A Prometheus
Missile Size: 4 MSP  (0.2 HS)     Warhead: 6    Armour: 0     Manoeuvre Rating: 10
Speed: 45000 km/s    Endurance: 33 minutes   Range: 90.0m km
Active Sensor Strength: 0.36   Sensitivity Modifier: 180%
Resolution: 60    Maximum Range vs 3000 ton object (or larger): 500,000 km
Cost Per Missile: 4.86
Chance to Hit: 1k km/s 450%   3k km/s 150%   5k km/s 90%   10k km/s 45%
Development Cost for Project: 486RP

12th May 2040
A Soviet espionage team acquires technical information on Capacitor Recharge Rate 5. After the break-up of NATO, security for weapon systems and other technology is far more lax in the former NATO countries. Soviet espionage efforts have proven very effective in recent years and this is the most important technical information obtained so far.

8th July 2040
Over the last two months, Eridani Shipyards in orbit of Roanoke have launched three Daring Mod 2 area defence cruisers, three Eridani class missile cruisers and, most importantly, the first two Churchill class jump cruisers. The Eridani Republic is well on the way to fully modernizing its naval forces, although one major task that is yet to be tackled is upgrading the fleet carriers to use the latest engine technology. Their maximum speed is still 5000 km/s. A replacement of their magneto-plasma engines with internal confinement fusion engines would increase that speed to 6250 km/s, which is still below the current Eridani ideal fleet speed of 7000 km/s. However, a more extensive refit would require the removal of armour and CIWS and perhaps a reduction in hangar space, as well as being much more expensive. Therefore the more limited upgrade is approved.

22nd July 2040
The combined population of the former NATO countries on Earth falls below one hundred million.

9th September 2040
Due to a high level of maintenance failures and a lack of supplies, the Soviet Union is forced to withdraw its Jiangwei class cruisers from their picket duties at the Sol - Gorshkov jump point. Admiral Thorn contacts Admiral Borisov and requests the Soviet Union assign new vessels, in the spirit of cooperation between the human powers against any alien attack. Admiral Borisov refuses, preferring to hold Soviet naval forces in Alpha Centauri and conserve their strength for an eventual return to Goavelha. Instead, the People's Republic of China agrees to assist and deploys three of its Spruance class destroyer escorts to the jump point. Their lasers will prove very effective at close range should any further alien incursions take place. China is aware of the previous incursions of the Goavelha into Sol and its leadership has been informed by President von Kolbe that the Goavelha occasionally send survey and construction ships through the Gorshkov - Sol jump point. The President has also suggested that China salvage any Goavelha wrecks once it has salvage capability. The Eridani force at the jump point comprises three 9000 ton Cerberus class monitors, each armed with eight 20cm lasers.

18th September 2040
Okean, the Soviet scout in Gorshkov, detects the arrival of a new Behemoth class ship from the direction of the 82 Eridani jump point. Its course appears to be taking it toward the Kostinbrod jump point.

20th September 2040
The population of the former NATO countries on Earth falls to less than sixty million, which is lower than the population of the Mars colony. Several of the Eridani shipping lines are now booking passage for Martian colonists who want to emigrate to Tau Ceti or Epsilon Eridani.

28th September 2040
Virtually all mobile installations have now been removed from the former NATO countries on Earth and transported to the Eridani Republic. All that remains are thirty financial centres, a dozen ground force training facilities, a mass driver, three deep space tracking stations and the military academy.

29th September 2040
Over the course of several hours, the wrecks of three more Goavelha construction ships appear in Gorshkov. Behemoth 001 was some distance from the wrecks when they appeared so it would seem the FACs that escorted the Behemoth in Goavelha are also present in Gorshkov. For some reason, Behemoth 001 is moving to the location of each wreck and spending several days there. Behemoth 003, the new arrival from EP Eridani, continues to close on the Kostinbrod jump point. Novorossiysk is dispatched from Novaya Zemlya to conduct a scouting mission into Kostinbrod after the Behemoth transits.

1st October 2040
Over the course of several days, eight Goavelha survey ships transit into Sol and are immediately destroyed by Eridani monitors.

4th October 2040
Active sensor emissions from a fourth Behemoth are detected in Gorshkov, three hundred million kilometers from the jump point to EP Eridani. It is on course for the Gorshkov - Sol jump point. Admiral Borisov and the Politburo begin discussing whether to warn the Eridani and Chinese forces on the Sol side of the jump point.

7th October 2040
Novorossiysk transits into Kostinbrod. There is no sign of any active sensor emissions from the Behemoth that entered the system several days ago. Two Invader Ordianum class ships are located five million kilometers from the jump point. Of far more interest is the wreckage of a third Ordianum at one million kilometers. It would appear that the Invaders defeated the huge alien warship but at the cost of one of their own cruisers. At least there is finally proof that the Invaders are not invincible. The total number of wrecks in the system is now seventy-five. Novorossiysk spends a few minutes in Kostinbrod and then transits back into Gorshkov. Admiral Borisov begins to consider a return to the system in force. He believes a full salvo from a large Soviet task group would be enough to take out both Invader cruisers and then Soviet salvage ships would have access to a veritable treasure trove, not to mention the large stockpile of minerals that remains on the Kostinbrod homeworld.

Novorossiysk has only been back in Gorshkov for a few seconds when she is suddenly struck by a barrage of fire. Ninety-two 800 ton FACs were waiting to ambush her when she emerged from the jump point. Each FAC mounts a single meson cannon and their combined fire is enough to inflict significant internal damage. Captain Yakolev has barely time to realize the FACs must have been closing on his ship during the journey across Gorshkov and moved to the jump point while he was in Kostinbrod before his ship is shattered by a second volley. In the few seconds before Novorossiysk explodes, Yakolev and just twenty percent of his crew make it to the life pods. The presence of so many FACs is a complete mystery, especially as they had not previously made their presence known and only twenty accompanied the Behemoth in the Goavelha system. This alien race, known to the Eridani as the Swarm, is soon being referred to within the Soviet intelligence community as the Orda (Cyrillic: ????) or Horde.

The loss of Novorossiysk is a significant one, especially as the ship had proven so effective in the scouting role. Fortunately, her sister ship Baku is due for launch from the Novaya Zemlya shipyards within two weeks. Initial plans are laid for an improved Project 1301 Novorossiysk-B class, which will be faster and mount sensors capable of detecting the Orda FACs at twenty million kilometers. It will be several months before a design is finalized and a shipyard selected for retooling. In Gorshkov, the stealthy Azov class scout Okean is monitoring events while she slowly closes on the Novorossiysk life pods at 350 km/s, the minimum speed required to arrive before their life support expires.

10th October 2040
Since the destruction of Novorossiysk, Behemoth 001 has, for some reason, returned to the wreck of a Goavelha construction ship while Behemoth 004 has resumed its course toward the Sol jump point.

21st October 2040
Okean successfully rescues Captain Yakolev and 114 other survivors from Novorossiysk. The small, overcrowded scout ship heads for the Sol jump point, still moving at 350 km/s. Behemoth 004 has moved within a billion kilometers of the Sol jump point and continues closing at 1000 km/s. Admiral Borisov, in consultation with the Politburo, has decided not to warn the Eridani or the Chinese. He believes that the defending ships will probably be destroyed, after which the Eridani will deploy fighters and eliminate the Behemoth before it can present any threat to the Soviet Union.

28th October 2040
The Eridani Republic refits its three Pegasus class salvage ships to use fusion engines. A fourth ship is under construction.

Pegasus Mod 2 class Salvager    22100 tons     462 Crew     918.4 BP      TCS 442  TH 2250  EM 0
5090 km/s     Armour 1-70     Shields 0-0     Sensors 1/1/0/0     Damage Control 1     PPV 0
Maintenance Capacity 26 MSP
Salvager: 1 module(s) capable of salvaging 500 tons per day

Commercial Internal Confinement Fusion Drive (9)    Power 250    Fuel Use 6%    Armour 0    Exp 1%
Fuel Capacity 200,000 Litres    Range 271.5 billion km   (617 days at full power)

3rd November 2040
Eridani and Chinese sensors detect the transit of the huge Swarm ship, designated by the Soviet Union as Behemoth class, into the Sol system. The Eridani have encountered similar sensor emission and shield readings in 82 Eridani in May 2034 and in Gliese 1 in January 2036 but have never been close enough for an active sensor contact. Even so, they know the Swarm are hostile and react accordingly. All three Eridani monitors open fire with 20cm lasers and try to open the range to avoid the expected meson cannon. The senior Eridani officer, Commander Susi Claus on the RNS Basilisk, sends an urgent warning to the three Chinese Spruance class destroyers, now renamed Taizhou, Ningbo and Luyang. The Chinese, shocked by the size of the alien intruder and with far less training than the Eridani ships, are slower to react. There are also two Soviet Molniya class fast attack craft remaining on the jump point, as they have suffered engine failures and have yet to be towed home. They cannot run and although they have twenty-four P-500 Palash missiles between them they have no active sensors. The Molniya is designed to operate in concert with the Molniya-S scout which provides the necessary sensor data.

The Swarm ship is hit by fourteen strength-8 hits from the lasers of the three Eridani monitors at a range of 48,000 kilometers, reducing its shields to strength-488. The monitors continue moving away from the alien, as their lasers begin a fifteen second recharge cycle, so they can fire from outside meson range. When the Eridani lasers fire again they are joining by two of the Chinese destroyers. While the Chinese 15cm lasers are less powerful than those of the Eridani, they are mounted in turrets which gives them far more accuracy. This is especially important as the alien ship's powerful ECM is seriously degrading the accuracy of human targeting systems. Eighteen strength-7 hits are scored by the monitors and twenty-four strength-6 hits are scored by Luyang and Taizhou. Based on previous encounters, Eridani Naval Intelligence believes the Swarm are some form of space-dwelling creatures rather than ships and have designated the small FACs as Soldier class. In the same vein, they classify the 60,000 ton ship as Queen class. Although the Chinese are in the fight, their ships have still not got underway and the Queen is only 13,000 kilometers from the jump point.

Five seconds later Ningbo joins the battle, scoring a dozen strength-6 hits and reducing the alien shield strength to thirty percent. Simultaneously the Queen opens fire on one of the immobilized Soviets FACs and destroys it. The alien sensors and targeting systems have quickly recovered from transit. Luyang and Taizhou fire again, as their 15cm lasers have only a ten second recharge time, and maintain their 100% strike rate. The alien shields are fading fast. At the same time, the second Soviet FAC is blown to pieces. The Queen's meson cannon have a five second recharge time. Basilisk, Charybdis and Cyclops fire again, along with Ningbo, and inflict significant armour damage. A barrage of meson fire wreaks havoc on Taizhou, causing massive internal damage and taking out her single fire control system. Her speed is reduced to 1600 km/s. Luyang defends her sister ship with a point blank salvo but it is in vain. Moments later a second alien volleys rips into Taizhou and she explodes.

Ningbo fires again, just as she becomes the next target of the alien ship. Her weapons strike deep into the Queen's armour but two alien volleys are enough to obliterate the gallant destroyer. Luyang is the last ship on the jump point and she has still not got underway. With no chance of escape she keeps firing, even though her crews knows their remaining life can probably be measured in seconds. The three Eridani monitors have opened the range to 80,000 kilometers and are continuing to fire every fifteen seconds, causing strength-5 hits at that range. The alien ship still does not show any sign of internal damage. Suddenly, twenty new contacts appear near the Queen class ship. These are immediately identified as Soldier class FACs, which have very high speed and a single meson cannon. Commander Claus orders the monitors to pull away at their best speed and concentrate all fire on the FACs. Unlike the Queen, these fast moving attack craft can quickly close to point blank range of the Eridani ships. No transit was detected so it appears the Queen was acting as a carrier for the 800 ton FACs.

As Luyang explodes on the jump point, the twenty Soldiers close on the three Cerberus class monitors. Each monitor assigns four 20cm Ultraviolet Lasers to each of its two fire control systems, enabling them to fire on six targets at once. The results are disappointing, with only eight out of twenty-four shots hitting their targets and only one of those hits resulting in fluid loss from the FACs; a sign of internal damage on Swarm vessels. Charybdis suffers three hits from meson cannon, which cause non-critical damage. Commander Claus orders each of her ships to concentrate fire on one target at once. The meson cannon on the Soldier FACs have a ten second reload time, allowing them to fire again before the Eridani can respond. Charybdis takes a further nine hits, which damage two of her engines and reduce her speed to 3100 km/s. A return volley from the monitors destroys two FACs and leaves a third dead in space.

Moments later Charybdis is hit again, losing a third engine and one of her seven reactors. Fortunately there is some redundancy in her power systems, so her rate of fire can be maintained. In the meantime, the Queen class ship is rapidly regenerating its shields. The Eridani monitors and Swarm FACs fire simultaneously. One Soldier is destroyed and a second crippled but Basilisk misses with all eight lasers. Charybdis only receives three hits, one of which takes out a fire control system. Fortunately, she has a second identical fire control so she is still combat capable. The Swarm FACs continue to concentrate on Charybdis and damage another engine. Her speed is now 2200 km/s. Commander Claus decides that as her ships cannot outrun the FACs they may as well fight at close range. Basilisk and Cyclops reduce speed and move to join Charybdis. They are still moving faster than the Queen and continue to open the range to the alien mothership. The accuracy of the Eridani ships continues to leave something to be desired. In the next volley, Cyclops misses with every shot and Charybdis only hits with one. Basilisk scores three hits and her target vanishes in a huge secondary explosion.

When the undamaged monitors rejoin Charybdis, the Swarm FACs change their target to Basilisk. Their opening salvo destroys two of her eight lasers, a fire control system and her ECCM system. Human and alien firing cycles coincide once again and both sides inflict damage. Basilisk suffers the loss of an engine. Two FACs are destroyed and a third crippled. Eleven intact Soldiers remain with three more dead in space in their wake. The next meson attack scores two only hits on Basilisk and both affected systems, an engine and a laser, remain operational. Eridani return fire inflicts internal damage on three FACs, one of which falls out of formation. Basilisk is hit again, losing her ECM and another engine, reducing her maximum speed to 3100 km/s. Two more FACs are destroyed at the same moment that Basilisk is hit eight times. Damaged systems include a reactor and two engines. Both Basilisk and Charybdis are now moving at 2200 km/s. The loss of ECM makes her an easier target and a follow-up attack takes out another laser, an engine and her active sensor. She is now down to five lasers and one fire control and can make less than half her normal speed but she is still fighting. Two of her lasers strike a FAC and it explodes, leaving no trace behind.

As the Swarm seems to concentrate on the nearest target, Commander Claus orders the undamaged Cyclops to move between the two damaged monitors and the remaining FACs. Before she can make the maneuver, Basilisk is hit again. One of her reactors is damaged but given her earlier loss of three lasers that is not a major problem. Both sides exchange fire again. Another FAC is destroyed but the Swarm ignores Cyclops and continues to concentrate on Basilisk, despite the monitor being further away. Yet another engine is disabled and her speed falls to 1300 km/s, barely faster than the still pursuing mothership. The three monitors maintain a close formation, Cyclops and Charybdis matching the speed of their crippled sister and continuing to hurl defiance at their pursuers. Two more FACs suffer engine damage and are left dead in space, although with the slow speed of the Eridani ships they will remain in range for over a minute. Eleven FACs have now been destroyed and seven crippled. Only two are still underway. Commander Claus is just beginning to believe that all three of her ships will escape when Basilisk suffers two more hits. One takes out a 20cm laser and the other destroys one of her three remaining engines, reducing her speed to 890 km/s. Less than the Queen class mothership which is just 250,000 kilometers away. Her crew desperately attempts to repair an engine but there is no time.

The last two mobile FACs are finally destroyed, leaving seven cripples between the three monitors and the jump point, the closest of which is 100,000 kilometers away. The monitors continue to fire on the cripples as they run at 890 km/s. Commander Claus, onboard Basilisk, can only see one chance to save her crew. She orders Cyclops to try and draw the Queen away from Basilisk, while remaining outside meson range of the mothership and any immobile FACs. Basilisk and Charybdis continue to run, taking out two of the crippled Soldiers at extreme range as they go. Cyclops circles the battlefield, destroying a cripple then opening fire on the Queen. The huge alien mothership turns toward Cyclops, attempting to bring her tormentor into range. As Charybdis can also outpace the mothership, despite her engine damage, Commander Claus orders her to reverse course and join the attack while Basilisk struggles sunward.

The two monitors circle the Queen, firing a laser volley every fifteen seconds. The mothership lunges at both ships like an enraged animal but they are faster and their weapons outrange hers. The shield recharge rate of the Queen is not quite high enough to offset the damage caused by the Eridani lasers and very slowly her shields are worn down. Eight minutes after the start of the attack on the Queen by Cyclops and Charybdis, an engine is repaired on Basilisk, increasing her speed to 1300 km/s. Commander Susi Claus orders her to reverse course and join the fight, although she has been heading away so it will take several minutes for her to return.

Meanwhile in Epsilon Eridani, Admiral Thorn is preparing a response to the alien incursion, both to deal with the immediate problem and to enter Gorshkov to determine the level of future threat. Unfortunately, three of his fleet carriers are being refitted and he doesn't want to send the other three out of the home system until that refit is complete. Instead, he assembles a powerful task group based around the six light carriers, each of which has a strikegroup of eighteen F-24D Cobras, the Eridani Republic's most modern strikefighter. They are escorted by four Eridani class missile cruisers, four Sentinel class escort cruisers, four Daring Mod 2 area defence cruisers and a Churchill class jump cruiser. All nineteen ships are either recent construction or have recently been refitted and they are all capable of 7000 km/s. The Soviet Union and China are unaware of the high speed of current Eridani designs so Admiral Thorn restricts their speed to 5000 km/s while they are in the Sol system, except in an emergency.

He also contacts Admiral Borisov to demand to know why there was no Soviet warning of the approach of the Queen class mothership. He reminds his Soviet counterpart that the Soviet Union asked NATO forces to withdraw from the Gorshkov chain several years ago and NATO complied. He also points out that NATO and subsequently the Eridani Republic have monitored Soviet traffic through the Sol - Gorshkov jump point and a significant number of Soviet ships are still within the chain, including a fast moving 6000 ton ship that transited several weeks ago. Given the size of the Swarm mothership and the strength of its active emissions, it seems highly unlikely that no Soviet ship spotted it before it reached the Gorshkov - Sol jump point. Admiral Borisov is not an admirer of the Eridani Republic, especially since its decision to interfere in the Second Sino-Soviet War, so he replies that the Soviet Navy is not a scouting force for the Eridani Republic and if the Eridani want to know what is happening in Gorshkov they should send in their own ships.

The drawn-out battle near the Sol - Gorshkov jump point continues. Cyclops and Charybdis have been pounding the Swarm Queen with laser fire for over twenty minutes and have been joined by Basilisk. Several of the hits are causing internal damage and it seems only a matter of time now. Even so, the Q\ueen is incredibly resilient and Admiral Thorn begins to consider possible specifications for a class specifically designed to combat the Swarm. In particular, he wants a ship that is beam-armed and faster than the Soldiers, in order to be able to stand-off and engage them without expending large quantities of ordnance. In Sol, after twenty-five minutes of continual fire, the Queen is finally destroyed. Commander Claus and her crews breathe a heartfelt sigh of relief. In her immediate after-action report, Commander Claus states her firm belief that the key to victory was the very high standard of training for her crews, combined with the ability of the Cerberus to withstand heavy damage due to redundant systems. The Eridani crews responded instantly to the her orders and without that immediate response she believes that all three of her ships would have been destroyed. A vindication for the Eridani obsession with fleet training exercises.

Basilisk and Charybdis are both dispatched to Roanoke for extensive repairs. Cyclops eliminates the last few crippled Swarm ships, picks up life pods from the three Chinese Spruances and the two Soviet Molniyas and then assumes a lonely vigil at the jump point. In addition to the task group that will enter Gorshkov, Admiral Thorn sends three more Cerberus class monitors and a squadron of FACs to reinforce Cyclops. In order to partially compensate the People's Liberation Army Navy for its gallant action at the jump point, the Eridani Republic transfers De Ruyter, the last Spruance in Eridani service, to the People's Republic.

The Chinese are equally furious at the lack of any Soviet warning. Despite their past differences with the Soviets, the Chinese expected some notification if the Sol system was about to be invaded by a huge alien mothership. They dispatch their last two Spruances to join Cyclops and will also send De Ruyter when she arrives in the Sol system. Admiral Xue Lin Feng, the senior officer of the PLAN, also offers Chinese ships to support any Eridani task group that enters Gorshkov. Admiral Thorn thanks his Chinese counterpart for the offer but states that the Chinese have already paid a heavy price defending the Sol system and suggests that the Chinese ships would be better deployed close to home. He reminds Xue that the Soviet Union launched the first Sino-Soviet war when half the Chinese fleet was outside the Sol system.

12th November 2040
Six Valhalla class FACs and an Asgard class fast scout join Cyclops at the Sol - Gorshkov jump point.

17th November 2040
The Eridani task group of nineteen warships arrives at the Sol - Gorshkov jump point. A J-30B Vanguard jump scout from RNS Invincible is sent through to check for any alien defenders. The scout reports no contacts and the task group enters Gorshkov. The jump cruiser Churchill has the most powerful sensor suite of any human ship. Her primary active sensor, the SN/SPY-47 Area Surveillance Array, has a range of over two billion kilometers against targets of 6000 tons or more and she has a secondary sensor able to detect 1000 ton fast attack craft at two hundred and sixty million kilometers. Even the smaller 800 ton Swarm Soldiers will be detected at one hundred and sixty-six million kilometers. Her SN/SLR-55 EM Detection Sensor is comparable to a planetary-based deep space tracking station. This latter sensor immediately detects the active sensor emissions and shield signature of a Swarm Queen at one point seven billion kilometers from the task group, located ninety million kilometers from the Gliese 908 jump point. Gliese 908 is known to the Soviet Union as the Goavelha system. There are also four wrecks in the system. Three are Goavelha construction ships, one of which is in the same location as the Swarm Queen, and the other is Novorossiysk, close to the Kostinbrod jump point. The task group holds position for a few minutes while active sensors and fire controls recover from transit.

As soon as transit effects wear off, Churchill detects eleven 6000 ton contacts of a previously unknown type, although they are positively identified as some form of Swarm vessel. All eleven are located within the Gorshkov-B solar system, which is a billion kilometers from the Queen and one point five billion from the Eridani. Gorshkov is a binary system of two red dwarf stars. Gorshkov-A has just two small planets, one of which is home to a small Goavelha colony that was occupied by the Soviet Union several years ago. Gorshkov-B, which orbits the primary every twenty-one years, has five planets, including four gas giants and a Venusian world, and thirty-nine moons, none of which are habitable. One of the new contacts is in orbit of the fifth moon of the fourth planet while the other ten are in the outer system and moving to join their sister ship at 1333 km/s. Rear Admiral Kaza Kosaku, commanding the Eridani task group, decides to deal with the new contacts before the Queen. In case the Soviet Union has planetary sensors on Gorshkov-A II, the task group maintains a speed of 5000 km/s.

When the task group is six hundred million kilometers from the Gorshkov - Sol jump point, Churchill detects one hundred and three Soldiers at a distance of one hundred and sixty million kilometers, closing at 10,000 km/s. Rear Admiral Kaza informs Admiral Thorn that the Swarm infestation in the Gorshkov system is obviously considerable. Given the lack of any sign of Soviet forces, he suggests to his superior that the Soviet Union has lost control of the Gorshkov chain and did not want to show weakness by admitting it. The six Illustrious Mod 2 light carriers launch all but five of their total complement of one hundred and eight F-24D Cobra fighters, each armed with four AGM-1D Sabre anti-ship missiles. Unlike the Eridani - Swarm engagement in the Gliese 1 system, the Eridani fighters, with their 14,000 km/ top speed, now have a significant speed advantage over the Swarm FACs so they can launch and return home without fear of being caught and destroyed.

Due to the resolution of their fire controls, the fighters have to close to sixteen million kilometers before launching. There is no point defence fire and one hundred and seventy-six missiles strike their targets. Only three Soldiers are destroyed and eleven are crippled. Eighty-nine continue toward the task group at full speed. The fighters head back to their carriers to re-arm. By the time they land the Swarm FACs have closed to sixty million kilometers and by the time they launch for a second strike the range is fifty-four million. This time the strike is far more successful, as many of the Soldiers are already damaged. Thirty-two are destroyed and twenty-nine more left dead in space. Only twenty-eight continue on toward the task group. The fighters land and re-arm for a second time, with the Swarm thirty-three million kilometers away. A third strike is launched, using only thirty-six fighters, which is enough to kill or cripple the remaining Soldiers. The four Eridani class cruisers are detached and use their 20cm lasers to eliminate almost fifty crippled Swarm FACs.

Although the Swarm attack force has been fairly easily eliminated with no danger to the Eridani task group, the carriers have used almost their entire supply of missiles. Five small colliers are dispatched from Epsilon Eridani with replacement ordnance. However, as the Republic is trying to build up its stocks of modern missiles and cannot afford to expend the number of missiles required to defeat large Swarm attacks on a regular basis, Admiral Thorn orders the colliers loaded with the older AGM-1A and AGM-1B Sabre anti-ship missiles. The cruisers still have missiles though so the task group resumes its approach to Gorshkov-B.

21st November 2040
The eleven 6000 ton Swarm vessels, all of which are now in orbit of the fifth moon of Gorshkov-B IV, make no attempt to either attack or flee or the Eridani task group approaches. Concerned about his ordnance situation and having seen no higher speed from the unknowns than 1333km/s, Rear Admiral Kaza decides to approach and attempt an energy engagement. He is confident his task group's speed can move it away quickly should the Swarm vessels have powerful energy weapons and his escort ships have the very latest anti-missile technology if they prove to be missile armed. Even when the Eridani class cruisers open fire from a range of 300,000 kilometers, there is no response from the alien ships. Admiral Kaza detaches the Eridani class cruisers and orders them to continue firing while closing the range. All eleven Swarm vessels are blown to pieces without ever acknowledging the presence of the Eridani. Given their concentration on whatever they were doing in orbit of the moon to the exclusion of everything else, the new Swarm class is designated as the Worker. The task group sets course for the Queen, which has been heading slowly in the direction of the Eridani ships ever since they engaged the Soldiers.

Knowing that the Queen carries at least twenty Soldiers, based on recent events at the Sol - Gorshkov jump point, Rear Admiral Kaza is concerned that if he sends his Eridani class missile cruisers in close for an energy engagement, they will be attacked by those Soldiers in the same way as the Cerberus class monitors. On the other hand, taking out the Queen with missiles will require a substantial amount of ordnance. However, the Eridanis are armed with both AGM-1E Sabre anti-ship missiles and 20cm lasers so he orders them to close in and attack the Queen with lasers. If the Queen launches Soldiers, the Eridanis will attack and destroy them with missiles before continuing the energy engagement.

The task group moves to within a million kilometers of the Queen then the four Eridani class cruisers are detached and move to 160,000 kilometers. Five seconds after they open fire, twenty Soldiers are detected charging toward them at 10000 km/s. Each cruiser has three SN/APG-43 Missile Fire Control systems and links ten Mk3 Box Launchers to each fire control. The plan is to launch one hundred and twenty missiles at twelve targets then the cruisers will change targets and each will launch twenty more split between two targets. Rear Admiral Kaza also orders them to reverse course and pull away from the Soldiers and the Queen, using the same tactics as the monitors in Sol. Unfortunately he has overlooked the fact that the monitor crews were extremely well trained and the crews of the recently-built Eridani class cruisers were only partway through their training schedule when they were deployed to Gorshkov. There is confusion when the order to change course is given and for several vital seconds the cruisers hold their position, neither pacing the Queen nor retreating before the enemy fast attack craft. New Plymouth is the newest ship and her crew does not launch her missiles on schedule.

The first salvo destroys eight of the nine targets but there is more confusion when Rear Admiral Kaza realizes three planned targets were not engaged, because New Plymouth has not fired, and those targets are not picked up in the second launch. He orders all four cruisers to use their lasers against the untargeted Soldiers. Even with the disorder in the Eridani ranks, the cruisers are highly maneuverable and are equipped with ECM, making them difficult targets for the approaching FACs. Only one Swarm meson cannon scores a hit; on the unfortunate New Plymouth. A Rolls Royce RR100 IC Fusion Drive is hit and disabled. Due to poor maintenance the damaged engine's power system does not go into emergency shutdown and a massive strength-22 secondary explosion tears through the cruiser, causing a second engine to blow up in a strength-8 secondary explosion and add to the catastrophe. As a result of the single meson hit, New Plymouth loses twelve of her twenty-one engines, her active and thermal sensors, a 20cm laser, a reactor, twenty-two box launchers and two hundred of her crew. Her speed falls from 7000 km/s to 3000 km/s. The ill-fated cruiser still doesn't launch her missiles and as a result only two FACs are destroyed by the second missile launch, leaving nine still in the fight. The other three cruisers launch more missiles to cover the untargeted FACs and begin picking off cripples with their lasers. New Plymouth finally scores a single laser hit, her only contribution to the engagement, and manages to avoid further damage. The third missile launch destroys all but three FACs, which are quickly eliminated by a combination of lasers and a final launch of a dozen missiles.

After her captain has received a severe dressing-down from Rear Admiral Kaza, New Plymouth rejoins her three sister ships and all four open fire on the Queen. Between the four cruisers they have fifteen 20cm Ultraviolet Lasers and are attacking the Queen from 75,000 kilometers, outside of meson cannon range. None of the crews are very experienced and have not had sufficient time to improve their combat skills through training. They are less successful than the Cerberus class monitors in terms of accuracy and their battle to take down the Queen's shields is a long one. The Queen's shield recharge rate almost matches the rate at which they can inflict damage. It takes more than an hour before they are finally victorious. Rear Admiral Kaza sends a recommendation to Admiral Thorn that the Eridani Republican Navy should develop a fast energy combatant to deal with enemies such as the Swarm. Kaza is confident that he has cleared the Gorshkov system of the Swarm infestation but his task group is now seriously short of ordnance. Before assessing the situation in the surrounding systems he decides to retire to the Sol jump point to await the colliers and to carry out repairs to New Plymouth. He also requests a salvage ship to investigate the wreckage of Novorossiysk.

11th December 2040
The Eridani colliers arrive at the Sol - Gorshkov jump point. Rear Admiral Kaza mixes and matches his available ordnance to get the best out of what he has. New Plymouth is armed with one hundred and fifty AGM-1A Sabres, while each of the other three Eridanis are loaded with one hundred and fifty AGM-1Bs. Unfortunately, the Eridanis, except for New Plymouth, will be unable to fire all of their new missiles until those box launchers used in the engagement against the Swarm have been readied for launch, which is a task requiring a hangar bay or maintenance facilities. All the fighters are armed with a loadout of AGM-1D Sabres, except for Invincible's strikegroup which has AGM-1Es. The D and E models of the Sabre differ only in range so they can be launched together. The carriers' combined magazines contain 228x AGM-1E, 6x AGM-1D, 4x AGM-1B and 644x AGM-1A. All five colliers are empty and heading home. While the task group awaited the colliers, all of New Plymouth's internal damage was repaired from the task group's own resources. Fortunately, in repair terms at least, mesons do not cause armour damage so a shipyard was not required. Rear Admiral Kaza gives the order to head for the Gorshkov - Kostinbrod jump point to investigate what the Soviet Union has been up to in the Kostinbrod system since the NATO cruiser New Mexico departed in May 2035.

The task group is two hundred million kilometers from the jump point when Churchill detects Okean, still moving at 350 km/s toward the jump point, at a range of thirty million kilometers. The Eridani are surprised by how close the Soviet ship was able to approach without being detected. Okean detects the thermal signatures of the Eridani ships at almost the same moment and her captain takes evasive action, unaware his ship has been detected. The Eridani ships continue on course without any sign they have detected the Soviet scout as Rear Admiral Kaza does not want to betray the capabilities of Churchill's sensors.

14th December 2040
The Eridani task group arrives at its destination and a J-30B Vanguard jumps into Kostinbrod. Its eight man crew is expecting to encounter a Soviet jump point picket. Instead they are confronted by a sea of wreckage, including a significant number of Soviet wrecks, and no sign of any Soviet or Kostinbrod ships. In fact, the only ships on sensors are two 12,800 ton cruisers of an unknown type and from a previously unknown alien race, ten million kilometers away. The jump scout sends a report through the jump gate to Gorshkov and awaits instruction. Rear Admiral Kaza decides to take his force into Kostinbrod and try to establish what manner of cataclysmic event has transpired in the system and attempt to communicate with the new alien race. As soon as they arrive, he realizes that Churchill is not picking up the EM and Thermal signatures from the Kostinbrod homeworld. There is no response to Eridani hails, either from the planet or the two alien ships, which are heading for the jump point at 10,000 km/s.

Rear Admiral Kaza ensures all his escort ships are prepared for missile attack, in case the aliens turn out to be hostile, and sends a warning to the two cruisers to halt their advance. He knows it is highly unlikely the aliens will understand but he doesn't intend to fire on a newly discovered alien race without at least trying to establish communication. While he concerned about the level of technology that their speed and their strength-300 shields implies, the Admiral doesn’t see the two ships as a serious threat to his powerful task group. He sends an update on the situation to Fleet Headquarters on Roanoke and requests all Eridani salvage assets be dispatched to Kostinbrod.

Rear Admiral Kaza is contacted by Captain Alexandra Krug, commander of the light carrier Indomitable, who raises the question of why the Soviet Union has not conducted its own salvage operation, especially considering the number of alien wrecks in the system, from which the Soviets might obtain new technology. In fact, the Soviet Union appears to have virtually abandoned the Gorshkov chain. The only reason she can find is that the Soviet Union is must believe it is too dangerous to carry out such operations. As the known Soviet forces should have been able to handle the Swarm forces in Gorshkov, she reasons that the aliens in Kostinbrod must be far more dangerous that their limited numbers might suggest, especially given the huge level of destruction in the system. Kaza encourages input and initiative from his officers immediately sees the logic of her concerns but points out that one of the wrecks near the jump point is of the same type as the two approaching cruisers and there are two very large wrecks in the inner system that appear to be from the same race. Captain Krug responds that the wreckage confirms the new alien race was involved in combat in Kostinbrod, yet of all the multitude of wrecks, the cruiser wreck is the only one that appears to be a warship from that race, assuming the large wrecks in the inner system are commercial vessels of some type, and the two cruisers are the only ships within two billion kilometers of the jump point. What might those facts suggest about the alien's combat power? Rear Admiral's Kaza response is to order all fighters launched immediately.

The rapid advance of the two alien cruisers suggests to Kaza that they are probably beam-armed. He assumes that missile-armed warships would have already launched against his task group. Once again he attempts to warn them off but there is no response at all, nor any sign the aliens have even received his transmission. He is unwilling to let the aliens reach energy range so he requests permission from Admiral Thorn to open fire. Normally, Admiral Thorn would be reluctant to begin first contact with a missile salvo but there are exceptional circumstances. He orders Rear Admiral Kaza to use all necessary measures to protect his task group.

Each alien cruiser has strength-300 shields, which will require fifty hits to take down with the later models of Sabre, which have strength-6 warheads. The alien armour strength is unknown but Kaza assumes that a further 30-50 missiles will be required to breach the armour and cause enough damage to result in structural failures. Due to the speed of the cruisers, the AGM-1D will have a base hit rate of around 45% and some missiles may be shot down by point defence. Therefore he arrives at a figure of 200 missiles per cruiser. His fighters are loaded with a total of four hundred and thirty-two AGM-1D and AGM-1E so he decides to launch everything, divided equally between the two alien ships. Five minutes after transit, with the aliens at eight million kilometers, he issues a last warning and then orders the fighters to launch their missiles.

Eight missiles are destroyed by point blank point defence fire. Just under 45% of the remainder strike their targets, resulting in a total of one hundred and eighty-nine hits. Not only is there no sign of any internal damage, the shield strength of both ships remains at 300. Rear Admiral Kaza is stunned by the ability of the alien cruisers to absorb damage. His tactical officer reports that the alien shields are radiating energy into space and are very likely to be a different form of shield technology than that currently under development by the Eridani Republic. Whereas the force fields created by Eridani shield generators expend their own energy to counter incoming fire and are reduced in strength accordingly, the alien shields appear to absorb incoming energy and then slowly release it. That absorption ability cannot be unlimited however.

Rear Admiral Kaza orders the four Eridanis to launch their missiles against the alien cruisers. As the AGM-1A Sabres on New Plymouth and the AGM-1B Sabres on the other three ships have different speeds, he instructs New Plymouth to launch against one target while Jamestown, New Amsterdam and Roanoke launch against the other. New Plymouth did not fire against the Swarm in the recent battle so all of her box launchers are available. She launches one hundred and fifty AGM-1As. The other three ships launch two hundred and thirty-four AGM-1Bs between them. Kaza is hoping to eliminate at least one cruiser with missiles and then engage the other when it enters beam range. New Plymouth is quicker to react than in the battle with the Swarm and all four ships launch their missiles after a twenty second delay, although due to a miscommunication Jamestown launches five seconds earlier than the others, which will make life easier for the alien point defence. The Sabre AGM-1A has a top speed of 27,000 km/s while the B variant is 3000 km/s faster. Even the AGM-1B is only three times as fast than the approaching alien warships, which will make interception difficult.

Before the Eridani missiles reach their target, a flight of twenty size 8 missiles is detected at five million kilometers, approaching the Eridani task group at a very worrying 80,000 km/s. The alien cruisers are only five point three million kilometers away and the reason they waited until relatively close range for their missile launch is unknown. In response, the Daring Mod 2 class area defence cruisers launch sixty Golem-built SA-N-34 Gargoyle anti-missiles. Ten seconds after they are detected, the target cross section of the alien missiles changes from 8 to 7, causing tactical officers on several Eridani ships to rub their eyes and check their equipment. In their experience, missiles don't change size in mid-flight. By the time the Eridani anti-missiles arrive the alien missiles have shrunk to size 3. Just one incoming missile is successfully destroyed. Nine more are hit but remain undamaged. The fact that some alien missiles survive being hit by a Gargoyle is cause for concern though as it means they may have some form of armour. Follow-up anti-missiles salvos are launched against the ten remaining inbounds.

Meanwhile Jamestown's missiles intercept an alien cruiser. A dozen are destroyed by point defence fire and over forty simply miss. Fourteen detonate on target and one of those hits results in a loss of atmosphere. Proof that the highly advanced hostile warships can be damaged. Rear Admiral Kaza is a fan of old movies and is sorely tempted to assume an Austrian accent and inform his staff that "If it bleeds, we can kill it". A desire to maintain the gravitas required for his rank barely overcomes that sudden impulse. Five seconds later, the missiles from New Amsterdam and Roanoke attack the same cruiser. Thirty-five are on target, triggering a catastrophic strength-150 secondary explosion that leaves nothing but wreckage. Following the destruction of the alien cruiser, half of the inbound alien missiles vanish from Eridani sensors. The slower AGM-1As from New Plymouth arrive at the same time as a second salvo of ten alien missiles is detected. Thirty scores hits and five of those result in atmosphere loss. The damaged cruiser slows slightly to 9374 km/s but continues to close the range.

The last few alien missiles in the first wave are destroyed short of the task group by follow-up waves of anti-missiles. Given that the one remaining cruiser can only launch ten missiles at once, Admiral Kaza decides to hold position and defend against future missile waves using only his beam-armed Sentinel class escort cruisers. He orders the Daring Mod 2s to begin launching their anti-missiles in offensive mode while his fighters re-arm. The SS-N-34 Gargoyles used by three of the area defence cruisers have a range of six million kilometers and the RIM-8D Stilettos of the fourth have a range of seven million kilometers. The alien cruiser is less than five million kilometers away. After three salvos, totaling over two hundred missiles, he orders them to cease fire to judge their effectiveness before expending too many missiles  There are only nine missiles in the third alien wave, suggesting that a missile launcher has been damaged.

The alien missile waves continue to arrive, separated by fifty seconds, but every incoming missile is shot down by either CIWS or the massed 10cm C3 Ultraviolet Laser Turrets of the Sentinels. The barrage of Eridani anti-missiles directed against the alien cruiser scores a very high percentage of hits, as the anti-missiles are designed to intercept fast moving anti-ship missiles. Several hits result in atmosphere streaming from holes in the alien hull but as the warheads are only strength-1, most hits are sandpapering the alien armour. When the alien cruiser emerges from the last of the anti-missile explosions, it is still moving at 7500 km/s. Rear Admiral Kaza orders another three waves to be launched. More and more Eridani missile strikes result in internal damage and the cruiser continues to slow down. Suddenly, it is engulfed by the same strength-150 secondary explosion that destroyed its sister ship. Despite the obvious advanced technology of the alien cruisers, the Eridani task group has managed to destroy both of them, albeit at the cost of a considerable amount of ordnance. Rear Admiral Kaza detaches his Eridani class cruisers and orders them to return to Epsilon Eridani to re-arm. He holds the rest of his task group on the Kostinbrod - Gorshkov jump point so he can cover the salvage ships and freighters that have already been dispatched from Epsilon Eridani.

18th December 2040
The population of Novaya Zemlya reaches four hundred million. The populations of the Soviet colonies on Alpha Centauri-A III and Alpha Centauri-A IV are thirty-eight million and twenty-six million respectively. The Soviet population on Earth is one point four billion. In Epsilon Eridani, the populations of Jamestown, Roanoke, New Amsterdam and Bermuda all exceed four hundred million.

23rd December 2040
The Soviet Union launches three new Project 1221 ' Nevsky' class railgun cruisers. The Eridani Republic launches four Sentinel class escort cruisers.

24th December 2040
Baku, the sister ship of Novorossiysk, enters Sol from Alpha Centauri, en route to the Gorshkov jump point. Admiral Borisov is keen to know what happened to the Eridani task group that entered Gorshkov a month ago. He believes such a strong Eridani force will very likely have dealt with the Swarm presence in Gorshkov, making it unlikely the fast scout will meet the same fate as her sister ship

2nd January 2041
Baku transits into Kostinbrod and immediately detects fifteen Eridani warships and a Pegasus class salvager on the jump point plus the wrecks of the Invader cruisers. Admiral Borisov contacts Admiral Thorn and informs him that the wrecks in Kostinbrod are the property of the Soviet Union and the Eridani should immediately withdraw their ships so that Soviet salvage operations can get underway. Admiral Thorn, who believes that a lack of warning from the Soviet Union was responsible for the deaths of Eridani and Chinese crewmen in the recent action at the Sol - Gorshkov jump point, responds that the Eridani sent their ships into the Gorshkov chain based on the suggestion to that effect made by Admiral Borisov. As the Gorshkov chain has plainly been overrun by aliens and the only signs of a Soviet presence were the wrecks of Soviet ships, the Eridani Republic does not recognize any prior claim to sovereignty. Eridani salvage operation will begin soon and he advises his Soviet opposite number not to interfere. Borisov angrily cuts the connection.

The Soviet Union is in a difficult position. While Borisov believes the Eridani would not start a war by firing on Soviet salvage ships, the Soviet Union's thirty Project 1207B Antonov class freighters are in Wolf 1061, two jumps from Alpha Centauri, picking up components of research facilities from an alien ruin in that system. They will not return for six weeks. Without those freighters, the three Soviet salvage ships orbiting Novaya Zemlya are useless. A Soviet task group could be sent to fight for control of the system but it would have to be a powerful one to combat the six Eridani light carriers and their escorts, which would leave Sol and Alpha Centauri open to attack by the six known Eridani fleet carriers. While the majority of the Soviet shipyards, construction factories and ordnance factories are now in Alpha Centauri, seventy-five percent of its population, all of its research facilities and most of its mining capacity is still in Sol. Borisov is forced to conclude the Soviet Union is still not in a position to fight a total war against the Eridani Republic and therefore must avoid unnecessary confrontation. He advises the Politburo to wait for the freighters and then send a fleet of freighters and salvage ships with a token escort to Kostinbrod to grab whatever they can before the Eridani salvage all the wrecks. In the meantime, the long term strategy of moving all Soviet industry into Alpha Centauri will continue.

to be continued...
 

Offline UnLimiTeD

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2011, 06:46:50 AM »
Another nice update, and the Eridani sure kicked the bucket there, quite skillful.

I still find it suspicious how all those alien races get names just as in the files.^^
Looks like the Chinese are getting back on their feet again, slowly, but steadily.
And the Soviets are still the loser faction. Ah, well, they might get their chance.
 

Offline chuckles73

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2011, 04:51:05 PM »
I felt sorry for the Soviets near the beginning, and when they were getting their asses handed to them.

On the other hand, their leaders are gambling with the Sol system on the table. They are becoming somewhat of a threat to the human race, and I'm starting to hope I see a Soviet-Eridani war at some point in the near future.
 

Offline vergeraiders

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2011, 05:22:37 PM »
Wow I really though Eridani hubris was going to cost them here, but not a single hit, even from a bad tactical position.

Admiral Thorn, who believes that a lack of warning from the Soviet Union was responsible for the deaths of Eridani and Chinese crewmen in the recent action at the Sol - Gorshkov jump point, responds that the Eridani sent their ships into the Gorshkov chain based on the suggestion to that effect made by Admiral Borisov. As the Gorshkov chain has plainly been overrun by aliens and the only signs of a Soviet presence were the wrecks of Soviet ships, the Eridani Republic does not recognize any prior claim to sovereignty.

While not unreasonable given recent events, made from a position of strength and given the Eridan's President track record, likely to be backed, isn't this change in policy above an Admiral's pay grade?
 

Offline UnLimiTeD

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2011, 02:59:42 AM »
If the Eridani were to be fair, they would leave one invader Ship to the Soviets because they can't know that they didn't even destroy that one.^^
 

Offline voknaar

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2011, 03:20:05 AM »
I dont recall any prior arrangement between the three powers how salvage operations were held in contested systems. So i'm not suprised its come down to the strongest/agressive force laying claim to the wrecks and planets.
 

Offline Beersatron

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2011, 09:04:52 AM »
I wonder how well the Eridani will hold up against the next wave of Invaders considering they only just barely managed to defeat 2 ships using their most advanced vessels!
 

Offline vergeraiders

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2011, 10:34:27 AM »
I wonder how well the Eridani will hold up against the next wave of Invaders considering they only just barely managed to defeat 2 ships using their most advanced vessels!
The won but they fought kinda dumb.

1) they didn't know the nature of the invader shields, now they do.
2) The initil range was only 10mkm
3) It didn't sound like they even tried to keep the range open
4) They used only one fighter missile strike and did not initially follow it up with ship based missiles.

The only real problem they have is missile supplies. At least if another fight happens in open space.
With a speed differential of only 3kkms any standoff battle becomes a long chase (closing 10mkm takes almost an hour),
even that should be enough for 2 fighter strikes. Also while the Plasma torps are formidable, the invaders don't mount
very many of them and they have a rather slow rate of fire. They seem to be moderately easy targets for beam based
defense, even if they are very fast (I do think the Eridani could use more turreted energy weapons, useful both
vs swarm soldiers and invader torps).

The most useful addition though would be a fast collier that can keep up with the light carriers and reload on the fly.
(is it possible to transfer fighter missiles while moving?). If the carriers could reload a fighter strike's worth
of missiles in the time it takes the fighters to attack and return life would be much easier.

On the other hand if the invaders have some type of faster ship, either destroyer class or better yet FAC's or much larger
ships with bigger/more torps that aren't too much slower, they could pose problems. Sheer numbers could work too :)

So far the invaders are a nasty, but one dimensional threat. At some minimum tech level - which the Eridani seem to have
gotten to - it becomes possible and even easy to deal with. If the invades have toys we haven't seen or vast numbers
then all bets are off, but that’s what makes it fun.
 

Offline MWadwell

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2011, 07:11:27 PM »
This alien race, known to the Eridani as the Swarm, is soon being referred to within the Soviet intelligence community as the Orda (Cyrillic: ????) or Horde.

G'Day Steve - you might want to disable smileys when you are writing cyrllic words, as I tried to post alternate translations of the word "horde" (thinking that the smiley was because you couldn't find the proper word) - and got a series of frowns (the same as you did above).......
« Last Edit: April 20, 2011, 07:15:00 PM by MWadwell »
Later,
Matt
 

Offline MWadwell

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2011, 07:20:57 PM »
I felt sorry for the Soviets near the beginning, and when they were getting their asses handed to them.

Perhaps the Rusiians are the new chinese?  :)

Quote
On the other hand, their leaders are gambling with the Sol system on the table.

To be honest, when the Queen/Behemoth was found heading to Earth, and the Russians planned to let the Eridani deal with it - I had the horrible thought of the Eridani going - "Why? We only have a small population in Sol - you deal with it!" (Just to watch the Russians faces)  ;D 

But then again, I'm a bit of a ba$#@rd....
Later,
Matt
 

Offline chuckles73

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #10 on: April 21, 2011, 04:45:25 PM »
To be honest, when the Queen/Behemoth was found heading to Earth, and the Russians planned to let the Eridani deal with it - I had the horrible thought of the Eridani going - "Why? We only have a small population in Sol - you deal with it!" (Just to watch the Russians faces)  ;D 

I didn't think this would happen, as the Eridani are sort of allied with the Chinese. On the other hand, the Soviets didn't know that the Eridani fleet was close by. What would have happened if the Monitors hadn't been able to stop the Queen and the entire Eridani Navy was engaged with hostiles 6-7 jumps down the system?
 

Offline Anarade Relle

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #11 on: April 23, 2011, 11:18:37 PM »
I assume the Soviets had their fleet prepared to move into Sol. Its a pity that the Jiangwei's had been withdrawn. I was hoping to see them in use.
 

Offline Steve Walmsley

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #12 on: April 27, 2011, 07:10:54 PM »
While not unreasonable given recent events, made from a position of strength and given the Eridan's President track record, likely to be backed, isn't this change in policy above an Admiral's pay grade?

That is a valid point. While I could argue it was a situation they had already discussed, I decided to build the above comment into the next episode :)

Steve
 

Offline BwenGun

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2011, 10:46:11 AM »
I just wanted to say that this is a fantastic AAR! You've captured the tone and thought processes of the respective sides perfectly and reading through all seventeen parts yesterday I found myself unable to stop reading until I had finished due to the engrossing universe you've created.  Suffice to say I shall be looking forward to the next part immensely.  :)
 

Offline Jakalo

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Re: NATO vs Soviet Union: Part 17
« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2011, 06:06:29 AM »
Awesome AARs both this one and Trans-Newtonian campaign.   Keep up the good work.
 

 

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