Author Topic: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion  (Read 10775 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline El Pip

  • Warrant Officer, Class 1
  • *****
  • E
  • Posts: 94
  • Thanked: 40 times
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #75 on: May 05, 2021, 04:16:20 PM »
I see the Legion's junior officers are taking inspiration from the famously loyal and calm Imperial Japanese junior officers. This seems a poor choice of tradition to keep, I would recommend their Lordships stamp it out now before things get out of hand.

A nice touch on the Imperial Guard essentially being crowd control for this meeting, this is a positive sign and I hope they are regularly called into action to settle particularly physical disagreements over naval technology policy.

The agenda for the Conference looks mouthwatering, I look forward with great interest to seeing how it unfolds. I am also flagging up the conference junket school trip visit to the dockyards as being a massive security risk, I'll be mildly surprised if all the attendees survive that and nothing blows up. I confess to being less sure about the State Dinner, it has got 'poisoning opportunity' written all over it but do Legion officers go in for poisoning? My feeling is that it will be something looked down upon and condemned, while actually quite a few people are more than happy to do a spot of poisoning of rivals, as long as they don't get caught. We shall perhaps find out when we get to that point of the conference. ;)
 
The following users thanked this post: Black, nuclearslurpee

Offline Black

  • Gold Supporter
  • Commodore
  • *****
  • B
  • Posts: 727
  • Thanked: 149 times
  • 2021 Supporter 2021 Supporter : Donate for 2021
    2020 Supporter 2020 Supporter : Donate for 2020
    Gold Supporter Gold Supporter : Support the forums with a Gold subscription
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #76 on: May 06, 2021, 09:47:35 AM »
The agenda for the Conference looks mouthwatering, I look forward with great interest to seeing how it unfolds. I am also flagging up the conference junket school trip visit to the dockyards as being a massive security risk, I'll be mildly surprised if all the attendees survive that and nothing blows up.

Yeah this one seems a bit too risky after previous trouble. I wonder how many lord admirals will survive that trip :D
 
The following users thanked this post: nuclearslurpee

Offline nuclearslurpee (OP)

  • Vice Admiral
  • **********
  • Posts: 1120
  • Thanked: 744 times
  • Radioactive frozen beverage.
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #77 on: May 06, 2021, 10:52:59 AM »
On the one hand, certainly any gathering of the entire Legion high command in one place is a nontrivial risk, indeed one wonders if the entire idea of this Conference is perhaps ill-timed given recent events. However, there are a few points to consider:
  • Security is likely to be beefed up across the board, with all forces on elevated alert status. This is particularly true at the Hyperion yard which is the site at which the Invincible class are built, presently the closest thing to a capital ship the Legion operates and thus worthy of the utmost watchfulness.
  • More importantly, the Legion high command are concerned with a public display of their boldness and refusal to cower in fear in the face of any threat.
  • Most importantly, one simply cannot have a conference and not have an outing, such a thing is simply not done.  :P
One notes in passing that perhaps not all of these reasons are necessarily in keeping with the traditions of wisdom and discretion.
 
The following users thanked this post: BAGrimm

Offline Zap0

  • Commander
  • *********
  • Posts: 326
  • Thanked: 461 times
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #78 on: May 06, 2021, 11:48:04 AM »
One notes in passing that perhaps not all of these reasons are necessarily in keeping with the traditions of wisdom and discretion.

And it is left as an exercise to the reader to figure out which ones?
 

Offline nuclearslurpee (OP)

  • Vice Admiral
  • **********
  • Posts: 1120
  • Thanked: 744 times
  • Radioactive frozen beverage.
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #79 on: May 06, 2021, 12:48:18 PM »
One notes in passing that perhaps not all of these reasons are necessarily in keeping with the traditions of wisdom and discretion.

And it is left as an exercise to the reader to figure out which ones?

Naturally.  ;)
 

Offline Stormtrooper

  • Commander
  • *********
  • S
  • Posts: 317
  • Thanked: 155 times
  • The universe is a Dark Forest
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #80 on: May 08, 2021, 05:28:54 PM »
Ok so I finally went through all of this... And I have a bunch of stuff to say.

Firstly, you put a lot of heart into this and it shows. That's some quality of work right there and it's only 10 years of gameplay that you wrote 5 bloody pages (well maybe a bit less if you cut out the comments :D) about, something I'd never been able to do myself and do not understand how you did it but you did it.

Also loved the particle beam stuff, that was some top-tier technobabble and on top of that illustrated with cool pictures I can only dream of having the patience and talent to draw. Why there wasn't more of this? The second spotlight honestly felt underwhelming after this one. I defnitely care more about awesomeness of technological development than whether it was 6 or 8 missiles that impacted against the armor and how the commander of this ship was called, so personally wouldn't mind if less work would go to battle reports and more into things like this in the future.

Speaking of which... You made, rather boring after having done it several times, precursor outpost assault something interesting to read about which was a neat surprise. On the other hand, sometimes your reports felt overdetailed and I struggled to keep track of what was actually happening between all those exact numbers of hits, ranges, amount of ships and commanders listed. If you insist of keeping the detail level the same, at least you could make some of these up to save yourself time and stamina on keeping track of all these details to write about cooler stuff like particle beams or whatever tech comes next, it's not like I'm going to break into your computer and check whether those 6 missiles were indeed 6 and not 10 and then hate on you for lying  ;) (unless that's what you are already doing  8))

The one thing I am missing from this AAR, though (and I'm sure it won't come as a surprise for you, you already know my approach well  ;)) is more roleplay in terms of how the society of the Legion is shaped and how it evolves and is shaped by the interstellar era, what the aliens it fights actually are and what they want, why are we suffering, from where we came, where are we going, what is the meaning of life (ok maybe it doesn't have to be that extensive... maybe  8)). The conference (as well as some previous debates mentioned for example the never ending drama with particle beams) was a very pleasant surprise and definitely a step in the right direction IMO, loved that part, but it's all about the military forces again, meanwhile I can't help but wonder how the society is shaped, how does the life of an average citizen looks like, what are popular opinions and beliefs, is the population happy with Legion's xenocidal approach or are there rebels opposing it, how Belaire even look like and how their civilisation and morals are shaped, what are Mongolians and what purpose did their ruins serve... (I'm sure xenoarcheologists came up with some conclusions, right?)

If navy is your main focus and point of interest then of course it is fine, we all like different things, but a few spotlights about the topics I listed here and there would be awesome. To close on this, certain aspects of your AAR remind me of "Remembrances of Earth's past" trilogy (from which I've stolen borrowed a lot some concepts ::)), in the sense that it also had its conferences, politics, famous commanders, naval business (I swear Legion's conference strongly resembles that part from the Dark Forest book when humanity organises space forces and tries to come up with doctrines that'd shape its future for decades to come), but at the same time it had its sociological and philosophical issues and cosmic mysteries to solve, something I am missing here.

All in all, keep up the good work, if you follow my suggestions that's awesome, if not I'm still going to read and enjoy it anyways, currently awaiting the conference to actually happen and I'm kinda hyped I guess.

Side note: found it interesting that the Legion also kinda looks like the one from New Vegas which everyone hates, except this time seems like it went with gender equality so the Caesar's Legion's vibes were weakened a bit, one less reason to hate it but come on, everyone knows NCR is superior and in aurora terms it looks like Invaders might resemble them in this campaign metaphorically - able to throw endless waves of soldiers everywhere and have long-ranged guns compared to Legion's railgun CQB.

So, that's all from me, awaiting new updates. :)
 
The following users thanked this post: nuclearslurpee

Offline nuclearslurpee (OP)

  • Vice Admiral
  • **********
  • Posts: 1120
  • Thanked: 744 times
  • Radioactive frozen beverage.
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #81 on: May 12, 2021, 10:19:30 AM »
Ok so I finally went through all of this... And I have a bunch of stuff to say.

Firstly, you put a lot of heart into this and it shows. That's some quality of work right there and it's only 10 years of gameplay that you wrote 5 bloody pages (well maybe a bit less if you cut out the comments :D) about, something I'd never been able to do myself and do not understand how you did it but you did it.

I am much gratified for your appreciation.  ;D

Quote
Also loved the particle beam stuff, that was some top-tier technobabble and on top of that illustrated with cool pictures I can only dream of having the patience and talent to draw.

I assure you, I myself have only got the patience.  ;)

Quote
Why there wasn't more of this? The second spotlight honestly felt underwhelming after this one.

Because it takes a lot of time and work to make such an art post. I do want to do similar things in the future but it is an investment and as such I prefer to reserve such efforts for suitably impactful moments in the narrative.

The second spotlight did have the unfortunate job of following up to the first, despite the fact that I had been planning it for some time it seems in the end it will mainly serve to make the next spotlight, whatever it may be, look better by comparison. I can't say I mind this too much, after all not every update can be a masterpiece and I accept this reality.

Quote
I defnitely care more about awesomeness of technological development than whether it was 6 or 8 missiles that impacted against the armor and how the commander of this ship was called, so personally wouldn't mind if less work would go to battle reports and more into things like this in the future.

Speaking of which... You made, rather boring after having done it several times, precursor outpost assault something interesting to read about which was a neat surprise. On the other hand, sometimes your reports felt overdetailed and I struggled to keep track of what was actually happening between all those exact numbers of hits, ranges, amount of ships and commanders listed. If you insist of keeping the detail level the same, at least you could make some of these up to save yourself time and stamina on keeping track of all these details to write about cooler stuff like particle beams or whatever tech comes next, it's not like I'm going to break into your computer and check whether those 6 missiles were indeed 6 and not 10 and then hate on you for lying  ;) (unless that's what you are already doing  8))

While I do strive to stay close to the game, being as much a narrative choice as anything as I personally like to follow how the "real situation" influences the responding tactics, I do think after this Naval Conference extravaganza there shall be a shift in how I approach the battle narratives as they will only become larger and more frequent. Of course the trademark degree of detail shall remain, but at which level I think shall be shifted upwards.

Quote
The one thing I am missing from this AAR, though (and I'm sure it won't come as a surprise for you, you already know my approach well  ;)) is more roleplay in terms of how the society of the Legion is shaped and how it evolves and is shaped by the interstellar era, what the aliens it fights actually are and what they want, why are we suffering, from where we came, where are we going, what is the meaning of life (ok maybe it doesn't have to be that extensive... maybe  8)). The conference (as well as some previous debates mentioned for example the never ending drama with particle beams) was a very pleasant surprise and definitely a step in the right direction IMO, loved that part, but it's all about the military forces again, meanwhile I can't help but wonder how the society is shaped, how does the life of an average citizen looks like, what are popular opinions and beliefs, is the population happy with Legion's xenocidal approach or are there rebels opposing it, how Belaire even look like and how their civilisation and morals are shaped, what are Mongolians and what purpose did their ruins serve... (I'm sure xenoarcheologists came up with some conclusions, right?)

If navy is your main focus and point of interest then of course it is fine, we all like different things, but a few spotlights about the topics I listed here and there would be awesome. To close on this, certain aspects of your AAR remind me of "Remembrances of Earth's past" trilogy (from which I've stolen borrowed a lot some concepts ::)), in the sense that it also had its conferences, politics, famous commanders, naval business (I swear Legion's conference strongly resembles that part from the Dark Forest book when humanity organises space forces and tries to come up with doctrines that'd shape its future for decades to come), but at the same time it had its sociological and philosophical issues and cosmic mysteries to solve, something I am missing here.

As you note this is a naval AAR at heart, in fact originally I had intended hardly anything more than this expecting to relatively quickly start shooting at things and writing about it while awaiting 1.13, instead now we have this as El Pip has put it rather baroque work. While I'm certainly not opposed at all to at some point getting down to the view of the common folk of the Legion, I am wary of expanding the scope beyond that which I enjoy writing about at any given time - as I tell other authors, the most successful AAR after all is the one which gets written!

Thus while I would never say never, I will note that an umprompted divergence into common life is improbable. However, were this to become of relevance to the plot, e.g., an origin factor leading to domestic agitation or colonial revolt, it would be more likely to see something like this being written as it becomes central to the driving narrative.

This being said I will assure you that looks at both the Belaire and Mongolican mysteries I do intend to resolve, in fact for both I have particular narrative breakpoints at which all some will be revealed, which we simply have not yet reached. All in good time, and such mysteries once revealed may or may not serve as a mirror into which the Legion gazes...  ;)

Quote
All in all, keep up the good work, if you follow my suggestions that's awesome, if not I'm still going to read and enjoy it anyways, currently awaiting the conference to actually happen and I'm kinda hyped I guess.

Side note: found it interesting that the Legion also kinda looks like the one from New Vegas which everyone hates, except this time seems like it went with gender equality so the Caesar's Legion's vibes were weakened a bit, one less reason to hate it but come on, everyone knows NCR is superior and in aurora terms it looks like Invaders might resemble them in this campaign metaphorically - able to throw endless waves of soldiers everywhere and have long-ranged guns compared to Legion's railgun CQB.

So, that's all from me, awaiting new updates. :)

At the risk of scandalizing the readership I must confess being woefully unfamiliar with the Fallout series, New Vegas included.

This aside, your selection of references will be noted for future investigations, and aside from that I am nothing but pleased to have another reader aboard. While the enthusiasm some demonstrate for my work is surprising to say the least, I for one shall not complain and aim only to provide more of it.

On which note, let us now return to a rather less amicable forum and see how our Lords Admiral are getting on, shall we?
 
The following users thanked this post: BAGrimm

Offline nuclearslurpee (OP)

  • Vice Admiral
  • **********
  • Posts: 1120
  • Thanked: 744 times
  • Radioactive frozen beverage.
OOC Note: As a reminder for the benefit of the reader, the agenda and attendance for the Naval Conference can be found in the first post of Chapter XXI and may be of some use to keep track of the various personalities involved as well as to be apprised of upcoming topics of discussion - about which speculation is as always encouraged!

----

21 May 4009

1330: Review of the Legion Navy, Duranium Legion Naval Conference

As the Conference attendees reconvened following their light luncheon, Lord Admiral Absolus Criasus again called the room to attention, for the Naval Review was about to begin. To begin, Lord Admiral Criasus would briefly summarize the current ships of the Legion Navy. While this could have been done by simply reading the ship roster from a list, even the patience of the Lords Admiralty had limits, therefore instead the Lord Admiral opted to accompany his presentation with technology, in the form of an optical projector used to show computerized slides with a tasteful 4:3 aspect ratio, to summarize the ship roster graphically as well.

As these graphics have since been lost to history, the reader is referred instead to the following listing:

   Duranium Legion Naval Roster
   2x Invincible class Light Cruiser: Imperator, Invincible
   1x Judgment Day class Light Jump Cruiser: Judgment Day
   11x Defiant class Light Cruiser: Dauntless, Devastator, Denouement, Defenestrator, Deadly Poison, Domination, Dissolution, Double Edge, Damnation, Devourer, Direct Fire
   3x Grand Cross class Light Jump Cruiser: Grand Cross, Gothic, Garrote
   19x Charybdis class Destroyer: Crushing Blow, Champion, Covenanter, Centaur, Charon, Cry, Ye Wicked, Catharsis, Char, Corrugator, Chimera,
                                                     Crusader, Chronomancer, Cuirassier, Cobalt, Carnivore, Chu Ko Nu, Cretaceous, Credulous Counsel, Charitable Donation

   8x Furious class Jump Destroyer: Furious, Fade to Black, Final Blow, Final Judgment, Flayer, Flatline Fakhoury, Felstalker, Fight Fire With Fire
   3x Bellerophon class Frigate: Brutal Legend, Bad Omen, Broken Wind
   3x Excelsior class Jump Frigate: Excelsior, Executor, Endless Night
   6x Hellfire class Frigate: Harrier, Heavy Metal, Halberd, Hellion, Harbinger, Homunculus
   6x Ars Magica class Survey Frigate: Avenging Wrath, Adjudicator, Angel of Ares, Apollo, Athena, Ariadne
   7x Ars Magica Mk II class Survey Frigate: Aether Net, Adamant, Archon, Archrival, Amalgam of the Void, Aeryn Sun, Argumentative
   11x R-56 class Recon Fighter
   6x AR-56 Osprey class Recon Fighter
   4x JR-1014 class Jump Scout
   2x B-108 class Buoy Layer
   Totaling 691,750 tons displacement with 19,744 crew complement
   
   Duranium Legion Auxiliary Roster
   34x Phaeton class Freighter
   4x Olympia class Cargo Shuttle
   10x Typhon class Colony Ship
   4x Accatran class Salvager
   4x Dragon class Tanker
   8x Salamander class Troop Transport
   10x Libra class Fleet Tender
   6x Andromeda class Stabilisation Ship
   6x Ogre class Tug
   6x Knossos class Fuel Harvester Platform
   12x Obsidian class Orbital Mining Platform
   2x Obsidian Mk II class Orbital Mining Platform
   6x Achelous class Terraforming Platform
   5x Achelous Mk II class Terraforming Platform
   1x Bastion class Barracks Station
   6x Warden class Traffic Monitor
   15x Gatekeeper class Traffic Monitor
   Totaling 9,594,694 tons displacement with 51,338 crew complement
   
   Former Republic of Belaire Roster
   1x Kirov class Strike Cruiser
   5x Zhdanov class Orbital Miner
   Totaling 364,122 tons displacement requiring 3,883 prize crew complement

An additional 32 ships were under construction in orbit of Duratus, of which fourteen were new naval vessels totaling 147,500 tons displacement, sixteen were new auxiliary vessels totaling 1,074,347 tons displacement, and two were Ars Magica-class survey Frigates (Adjudicator and Apollo) undergoing refits to the Mk II version of the class. Finally, an additional Mk II orbital mining platform was under construction by planetside factories on Duratus. Notably, three Gatekeeper-class traffic monitors would be commissioned before the Naval Conference was planned to conclude, although this would have little real effect on the plans made by the Lords Admiralty over the course of the coming week.



Status of the Legion shipyards as of 21 May 4009. Not shown is the additional Obsidian Mk II orbital mining platform under construction by Duratus planetside industry.

For the sake of completeness, while it would not make him popular among the members of the assembly Lord Admiral Criasus also briefly listed the ship losses suffered by the Legion:

   TABLE OF LEGION NAVY VESSELS LOST, 1 JAN 4000 to 21 MAY 4009
   Lost in the Battle of Gliese 1, 19 April 4003: CL Defiant, DD Carronade, DD Charybdis, DD Conqueror, DD Centurion, FF Bellerophon, FF Battleaxe, R-56 001
   Lost at the frontier in Eta Cassiopeiae, 13 November 4005: FS Ardent Knight
   Missing and presumed lost in Eta Cassiopeiae: MNT Warden 6
   Lost at the frontier in Devil’s Hand, 13 January 4006: FS Ars Magica
   Lost at the frontier in Eta Cassiopeiae, 21 March 4006: R-56 004
   Lost to Belaire action in Luyten 302-89, 7 July 4007: MNT Gatekeeper 3
   Lost to Belaire action in Struve 2398, date uncertain: MNT Warden 7
   Lost while reconnoitering the jump point to Kuiper 79, 15 July 4007: R-56 016
   Lost in First Battle of Kuiper 79, 2 August 4007: FF Barbette, FF Bloodsucker, FF Braggart
   Lost in Operation Eagle, 9 October 4007: AR-56 Osprey 1
   Lost at the frontier in 82 Eridani, 5 July 4008: FS Ascendant Might
   Lost in jump point assault into Belaire, 19 January 4009: DD Chainsaw, DD Creeping Death, DD Calamitous, DD Caliban, FF Bat Country, FF Blastwave, FF Battery
   Lost while reconnoitering jump point to WISE 035-5658, 15 April 4009: R-56 002, AR-56 Osprey 2
   Lost to mutinous action, 19 May 4009: CL Disruptor, FF Hellfire, R-56 006
   
   TOTAL LEGION NAVY LOSSES, 1 JAN 4000 to 21 MAY 4009
   2x Defiant class Light Cruiser
   8x Charybdis class Destroyer
   8x Bellerophon class Frigate
   3x Ars Magica class Survey Frigate
   1x Hellfire class Frigate
   5x R-56 class Recon Fighter
   2x AR-56 class Recon Fighter
   2x Warden class Traffic Monitor
   1x Gatekeeper class Traffic Monitor
   Totaling 206,750 tons displacement with 5,869 crew complement

Having given his summary, the Lord Admiral invited each Lord High Admiral in turn to brief the assembly on their respective commands within the fleet. These briefings were largely intended as a review of Legion Naval doctrine and performance in the field, and while a few clarifying questions were permitted the major part of discussion and debate was held for future sessions - most forcibly as the topic of the Hellfire-class frigates was necessarily broached.

----

Lord High Admiral Jack Macaria, as commander of the Legion Home Fleet, presented the briefing on Legion Navy combat doctrine and performance. This was, it goes without saying, the most widely-anticipated briefing of the afternoon session.

The Lord High Admiral began his briefing by briefly reviewing the existing doctrine of the Legion Navy, noting at the outset that these were the official doctrines but not necessarily those which had been followed in practice on every occasion. Excerpts are presented below:

On Fleet Composition: “The Legion Navy emphasizes modular fleet organization with the aim of streamlining fleet logistics and operational planning. The basis of this modular organization is the squadron-level formation composed of vessels within a single hull type subgroup.”

“Every squadron is capable of carrying out detached, if not fully independent, operations. Critical to this capability is the inclusion of at least one jump-capable vessel in every squadron, ensuring that any squadron can arrive in any combat theater without reliance on jump logistic infrastructure which may or may not be in place… With present jump drive technology, the number of large vessels in a squadron is set as four, including one jump-capable vessel.”

“The standard composition of a Legion Naval battle fleet is specified as: one cruiser squadron; two destroyer squadrons; and one frigate squadron. This organization may be augmented by the attachment of additional squadrons to meet operational needs or to reflect the tactical situation in a theater of operations.”



Organizational chart for a Legion Navy battle fleet, according to the Legion Navy doctrinal manual of 1 Jan 4000. Tellingly, none of the Legion’s three currently-active battle fleets was actually organized in this manner at the time of the Naval Conference.

At this stage, Lord High Admiral Macaria briefly paused to permit a short period of discussion and clarification, during which a few points were raised by the assembly:
  • Lord Admiral Glycon Limos was first to take the floor, noting that the ratio of destroyers (8) to cruisers (4) had been set largely for the purposes of ensuring adequate point defense capability for a Legion Navy battle fleet facing a missile-armed opponent of similar strength. However, while this had been a necessary concession due to the lack of point defense armament on the Defiant-class light cruisers the new Invincible-class light cruisers now mounted a point defense battery which could reduce, though not eliminate, the need for destroyers.
  • Lord Admiral Criasus responded, noting the validity of his colleague’s points in a general sense, but pointing out that battlefield experience had shown that a squadron of three Charybdis-class destroyers (plus jump vessel) was necessary to counterbalance the volume of light missile fire from a Belaire Slava-class escort cruiser. The same capability would require five or six Invincibles, three times the displacement of the destroyers to accomplish the same purpose. The assembly at large accepted the points of both Lords Admiral as valid considerations.
  • Lord Admiral Niobe Chryson, famously the victor of the Battle of Gliese 1, raised a strong argument against the existing squadron composition requiring a jump-capable vessel in every squadron, noting that the Legion Navy fleets in practice fielded only about 80% of the firepower that their fleet tonnages would imply as a consequence of this doctrine. The Grand Cross-class light jump cruisers came under particular criticism, with an unfavorable comparison drawn with the much-maligned Belaire Kiev-class jump cruisers.
  • Lord Grand Admiral Tethys Argyron concurred with the judgment of her subordinate, but noted for the benefit of the assembly that squadron-based jump tactics had been essential for the conquest of the Belaire home system, cautioning against rash, reactive action and advising that a measured, considered solution be sought.
Following the advice given at the beginning of the session, specific complaints about the Bellerophons, Hellfires, or any other specific ship classes were held for later sessions. With discussion points made to the satisfaction of the assembly, Lord High Admiral Macaria resumed his briefing, turning now to the discussion of each major warship class which had to date seen service with the Legion Navy:

On the Defiant-class Light Cruisers: “The primary battle role of the Defiant-class light cruiser is to close with the enemy and destroy them with an overwhelming volume of medium-caliber firepower. Its heavy armor enables a light cruiser squadron to serve as the spearpoint for an assault, escorted by destroyers and other support vessels.”

“As a light cruiser, the Defiant class is intended to be capable of independent operations against internal agitators as well as external raiding forces. To support this goal, the Defiants have been equipped with R-56 and more recently AR-56 reconnaissance craft to provide long-range scouting support. However, battle experience has shown that the point defense capability of the 152 mm railgun batteries is insufficient for truly independent cruiser operations.”

“As has been noted by Lord Admiral Chryson and others, the complete lack of armament aboard a Grand Cross-class jump cruiser represents a severe deficiency in the organization of our light cruiser squadrons.”

“The Defiant and Grand Cross classes are slated for replacement by the Invincible and Judgment Day classes, which address these deficiencies while increasing overall firepower which can be brought to bear.”

Aside from a few questions requesting clarification from the Lord High Admiral, no significant points of discussion were raised by the assembly regarding the Defiant class.

Off-Topic: Defiant class Light Cruiser • show

Defiant class Light Cruiser      12,500 tons       371 Crew       1,783.9 BP       TCS 250    TH 1,250    EM 0
5000 km/s      Armour 6-47       Shields 0-0       HTK 81      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 12      PPV 48
Maint Life 3.14 Years     MSP 1,070    AFR 104%    IFR 1.4%    1YR 163    5YR 2,448    Max Repair 312.5 MSP
Hangar Deck Capacity 250 tons     
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   AUX   ENG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Flight Crew Berths 20    Morale Check Required   

Hyperion Drive Yards H-625 Cruiser Engine 'Hydra' (2)    Power 1250    Fuel Use 35.78%    Signature 625    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 580,000 Litres    Range 23.3 billion km (54 days at full power)

Arcadia Weapons Systems 152 mm Medium Battery Mk III (8x4)    Range 90,000km     TS: 5,000 km/s     Power 9-3     RM 30,000 km    ROF 15       
Arcadia Weapons Systems Medium Battery Director Mk III (2)     Max Range: 192,000 km   TS: 5,100 km/s     95 90 84 79 74 69 64 58 53 48
Chryson Dynamics 12 TW Induction Drive Cell Mk VI (2)     Total Power Output 24.2    Exp 5%

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Onboard Targeting System (1)     GPS 16     Range 6.4m km    MCR 574.5k km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


Off-Topic: Grand Cross class Light Jump Cruiser • show

Grand Cross class Light Jump Cruiser      12,500 tons       325 Crew       1,771.5 BP       TCS 250    TH 1,250    EM 0
5000 km/s    JR 4-100      Armour 6-47       Shields 0-0       HTK 65      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 16      PPV 0
Maint Life 3.33 Years     MSP 1,417    AFR 78%    IFR 1.1%    1YR 194    5YR 2,907    Max Repair 371 MSP
Hangar Deck Capacity 250 tons     
Captain    Control Rating 3   BRG   AUX   ENG   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Flight Crew Berths 20    Morale Check Required   

Legion Gravitic Corps LG-250 Gravity Drive 'Supernova'     Max Ship Size 12500 tons    Distance 100k km     Squadron Size 4

Hyperion Drive Yards H-625 Cruiser Engine 'Hydra' (2)    Power 1250    Fuel Use 35.78%    Signature 625    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 570,000 Litres    Range 22.9 billion km (53 days at full power)

Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


Author’s Note: The ship design summaries presented in this chapter are reproduced from those in previous chapters, for the convenience of the reader, and no new technical data is presented.

On the various Reconnaissance Craft projects: The assembly did, on the other hand, have several comments on the efficacy of the various reconnaissance craft projects which had seen service in the field:
  • Several Lords Admiral successively expressed the opinion that while the R-56 and its derivatives were quite capable craft, opportunities to use them had been in practice quite limited, particularly prior to a battle as a fleet reconnaissance unit.
  • A severe split of opinion developed as to whether the passive sensor-equipped R-56 or the active sensor-equipped AR-56 Osprey class should be considered the primary reconnaissance craft of the Legion for practical purposes. Lord High Admiral Hilaera Antilochus, speaking for Survey Command, was of the opinion that the AR-56 had proven its versatility in the case of Operation Osprey which had led to the recovery of the survey frigate Adamant.
  • On the other hand, Lord Admiral Limos pointed out that the active sensor capabilities of the AR-56 were of no use in a combat situation, as the Legion Navy did not mount indirect fire capabilities on any class of warships.
  • At this, Lord Admiral Adrien Agamemnon of the Survey Corps interjected out of turn to inform Lord Admiral Limos that there were more naval operation types which a fleet should be capable of besides grand battle.
  • Lord Admiral Limos replied that while this was a true statement, the discussion at hand pertained to a battle fleet, and furthermore stated without citations that it was considered rude to interrupt a fellow officer while they had the floor.
  • Lord Admiral Agamemnon at this stage requested additional information regarding what Lord Admiral Limos intended to do about this.
At this point, the record indicates that several members of the Imperial Guard detachment were briefly engaged in maintaining order among the assembly. Following this, Lord Admiral Criasus announced a closure of the topic, indicating that the professional differences of opinion on the matter clearly indicated that the question was one of doctrinal review, and thus to be reserved for a later session.
  • An informal floor vote confirmed that the unanimous opinion of the Lords Admiral - this being a truly rare occurrence - was that the JR-1014 jump scouts were frankly terrible, strictly inferior to the Gatekeeper-class traffic monitors, and ought to be sold off for scrap. Eager to end on a positive note, Lord High Admiral Macaria quickly closed the discussion and moved on to the next segment of his briefing.
Off-Topic: Legion Navy Reconnaissance Craft • show

R-56 class Recon Fighter      250 tons       6 Crew       35.6 BP       TCS 5    TH 25    EM 0
5008 km/s      Armour 1-3       Shields 0-0       HTK 3      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 0      PPV 0
Maint Life 3.34 Years     MSP 20    AFR 50%    IFR 0.7%    1YR 3    5YR 41    Max Repair 12.5 MSP
Subcommander    Control Rating 1   
Intended Deployment Time: 3 months    Morale Check Required   

Hyperion Drive Yards HF-25 Fighter Engine 'Erinys' (1)    Power 25    Fuel Use 178.89%    Signature 25    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 15,000 Litres    Range 6 billion km (13 days at full power)

Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km

AR-56 Osprey class Recon Fighter      250 tons       6 Crew       39.5 BP       TCS 5    TH 25    EM 0
5008 km/s      Armour 1-3       Shields 0-0       HTK 3      Sensors 0/0/0/0      DCR 0      PPV 0
Maint Life 18.15 Years     MSP 24    AFR 2%    IFR 0.0%    1YR 0    5YR 2    Max Repair 16 MSP
Subcommander    Control Rating 1   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Hyperion Drive Yards HF-25 Fighter Engine 'Erinys' (1)    Power 25    Fuel Use 178.89%    Signature 25    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 50,000 Litres    Range 20.2 billion km (46 days at full power)

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Traffic Scanner (1)     GPS 2400     Range 33.9m km    Resolution 150

JR-1014 class Jump Scout      500 tons       14 Crew       73.2 BP       TCS 10    TH 25    EM 0
2504 km/s    JR 1-50      Armour 1-5       Shields 0-0       HTK 6      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 0      PPV 0
Maint Life 13.39 Years     MSP 58    AFR 10%    IFR 0.1%    1YR 1    5YR 9    Max Repair 16 MSP
Subcommander    Control Rating 1   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Legion Gravitic Corps LG-10 Gravity Drive 'Dart'     Max Ship Size 500 tons    Distance 50k km     Squadron Size 1

Hyperion Drive Yards HF-25 Fighter Engine 'Erinys' (1)    Power 25    Fuel Use 178.89%    Signature 25    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 64,000 Litres    Range 12.9 billion km (59 days at full power)

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Traffic Scanner (1)     GPS 2400     Range 33.9m km    Resolution 150
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


On the Charybdis-class Destroyers: “The primary battle role of the Charybdis-class destroyer is to escort a squadron of light cruisers, or any future class of heavier vessels, providing point defense fire to protect the primary firepower vessels from missile attack until the distance to the enemy has been closed. The defense batteries of this class are also capable of disabling or destroying smaller enemy vessels by sustained rapid fire, and as such may be used to intercept enemy light attack craft while serving in the escort role.”

“As previously noted by Lord Admiral Criasus, battle experience against a comparable enemy such as the Republic of Belaire Navy (the meeting minutes make note of derisive scoffing at this juncture) a squadron of three Charybdis are sufficient to defend against light missile fire from a single Slava-class escort cruiser, or against heavy missile fire from a pair of Kirov-class strike cruisers.”

Aside from clarifying questions, the only noteworthy comment brought to the floor at this juncture was made by Lord Admiral Chryson, who wished to point out that despite an armor thickness only two-thirds that of the Defiant class, the Charybdis class had proven remarkably survivable, able to receive hits from over one hundred light missile or a full laser broadside from the Belaire Sovremenny class and remain structurally intact. In general, the consensus from the assembly was that in spite of several battle losses the class had proven entirely successful compared to its design basis.

Off-Topic: Charybdis class Destroyer • show

Charybdis class Destroyer      10,000 tons       324 Crew       1,467 BP       TCS 200    TH 1,000    EM 0
5000 km/s      Armour 4-41       Shields 0-0       HTK 68      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 8      PPV 48
Maint Life 3.06 Years     MSP 733    AFR 100%    IFR 1.4%    1YR 118    5YR 1,765    Max Repair 250 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 2   BRG   AUX   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Hyperion Drive Yards H-500 Destroyer Engine 'Cerberus' (2)    Power 1000    Fuel Use 40.0%    Signature 500    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 471,000 Litres    Range 21.2 billion km (49 days at full power)

Arcadia Weapons Systems 102 mm Defense Battery Mk III (16x4)    Range 30,000km     TS: 5,000 km/s     Power 3-3     RM 30,000 km    ROF 5       
Arcadia Weapons Systems Defense Battery Director Mk III (4)     Max Range: 96,000 km   TS: 5,100 km/s     90 79 69 58 48 38 27 17 6 0
Chryson Dynamics 12 TW Induction Drive Cell Mk VI (4)     Total Power Output 48.4    Exp 5%

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Onboard Targeting System (1)     GPS 16     Range 6.4m km    MCR 574.5k km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


Off-Topic: Furious class Jump Destroyer • show

Furious class Jump Destroyer      10,000 tons       285 Crew       1,349.3 BP       TCS 200    TH 1,000    EM 0
5000 km/s    JR 4-100      Armour 4-41       Shields 0-0       HTK 60      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 10      PPV 12
Maint Life 3.07 Years     MSP 883    AFR 80%    IFR 1.1%    1YR 140    5YR 2,106    Max Repair 250 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 2   BRG   AUX   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Legion Gravitic Corps LG-200 Gravity Drive 'Helios'     Max Ship Size 10000 tons    Distance 100k km     Squadron Size 4

Hyperion Drive Yards H-500 Destroyer Engine 'Cerberus' (2)    Power 1000    Fuel Use 40.0%    Signature 500    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 471,000 Litres    Range 21.2 billion km (49 days at full power)

Arcadia Weapons Systems 102 mm Defense Battery Mk III (4x4)    Range 30,000km     TS: 5,000 km/s     Power 3-3     RM 30,000 km    ROF 5       
Arcadia Weapons Systems Defense Battery Director Mk III (1)     Max Range: 96,000 km   TS: 5,100 km/s     90 79 69 58 48 38 27 17 6 0
Chryson Dynamics 12 TW Induction Drive Cell Mk VI (1)     Total Power Output 12.1    Exp 5%

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Onboard Targeting System (1)     GPS 16     Range 6.4m km    MCR 574.5k km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


On the Bellerophon-class Frigates: “The primary battle role of the Bellerophon-class frigate is to provide long-range sensor intelligence and support to a battle fleet based around a squadron of light cruisers or any future class of heavier vessels. In addition to general signals intelligence gathering, the Bellerophon class fills a key secondary role of providing long-range missile detection to provide enhanced targeting solutions to the point defense battery directors of Charybdis and other point defense-capable vessels in the fleet.”

“It has not escaped the notice of the Lords Admiral among others that the Bellerophon class has suffered by far the greatest rate of casualties out of all classes currently in Legion Naval service. It is the common opinion of the Lords Admiral and Captain that the Bellerophon class is undersized and under-armored relative to its intended role in the line of battle. This being noted, it is also the opinion of our battlefield commanders that the operational and tactical intelligence and support provided by the Bellerophon class has proven essential in numerous engagements and operations.”

“This class is not at this time slated for replacement, if for no other reason than the salient lack of any suitable replacement for its capabilities. However, it is considered clear and common knowledge that the doctrine which justifies the existence of the Bellerophon class must be at the very least significantly revised, if not rewritten in its entirety.”

As the reader might expect, despite the reservation of most discussion about this class for a future session there were a number of comments on the topic:
  • Lord Admiral Chryson once again submitted a comment to the assembly, suggesting that the Bellerophon class had been targeted primarily due to its small size and light armor, representing the easiest target to destroy for light weapons such as the magnetic defense cannons encountered in the Battle of Gliese 1. She noted that during that battle, Bellerophon was only targeted once she crossed into range of these light weapons, which would likely have been unable to destroy any larger or more heavily-armored target.
  • Notably, Lord Admiral Criasus granted special dispensation for Lord Captain Selene Styx to take the floor, being recognized as a subject matter expert. The Lord Captain pointed out two mitigating factors in response to Lord Admiral Chryson’s comment: first, that the firepower removed from battle by taking out a Bellerophon was minimal, and the Belaire Navy would have realized this after their first few defeats and adjusted their targeting accordingly, which they did not; second, that despite ample opportunities to do so the Belaire had never targeted an Excelsior-class jump frigate of the same tonnage class, even though the Excelsiors mounted an additional 102 mm railgun battery apiece compared to the Bellerophons and were arguably (slightly) more dangerous. Lord Captain Styx then drew the conclusion that the Bellerophons were targeted principally due to their large active sensors by enemies hoping to reduce the targeting ability of a Legion battle fleet.
  • Lord Admiral Criasus himself noted that while the battle record of the Bellerophon class was spotty, losses of that class had occurred chiefly due to (1) poor battle planning at the Battle of Gliese 1, which had seen heavy losses suffered across the entire battle fleet, and (2) deployment as part of a jump point assault fleet, a role which the class lacked sufficient armor to adequately fulfill. Losses in Kuiper 79, when the class had accompanied the fleet for anti-missile work and not been detached prior to entering beam range of the Belaire Sovremennys was noted as a tactical error rather than a failing of the class itself. He thus put forth the conjecture that a fleet role could remain for the Bellerophon class or a close successor, but this role would necessarily have to be limited if not outright restrictive to preserve the vessels.
  • As this last comment had pushed into topics reserved for a future session, Lord High Admiral Macaria stated that further comments along the line of inquiry raised by Lord Admiral Criasus should be held at the present time.
  • Lord Admiral Gaia Pandia, based on her adjacent expertise as commander of the Logistics Corps, made note that Bad Omen had accounted for some losses of Belaire auxiliary vessels while serving in a surveillance role, indicating that the Bellerophon class had some capability in a commerce raiding role when relying on its powerful sensors to detect enemy convoy routes. No comment was made at this time about possible doctrinal implications of this, in deference to Lord High Admiral Macaria’s previous statement.
  • Once comments from the assembly had been exhausted, Lord Admiral Criasus recognized the Lady Imperator Ellen Scamander as a subject matter expert. The Lady Imperator summarized for the assembly how the design of the passive sensor arrays had been optimized to counter-detect alien vessels from beyond the range of their own active sensors. Scamander Corporation research engineers had determined based on the alien technologies encountered thus far that these sensors were not only capable of this, but in fact were over-powered by about one-third compared to what was necessary to defeat any known alien sensor types. Some flexibility therefore would exist for any hypothetical “Mark II” design of the Bellerophon class.
Off-Topic: Bellerophon class Frigate • show

Bellerophon class Frigate      7,500 tons       211 Crew       1,237 BP       TCS 150    TH 750    EM 0
5000 km/s      Armour 3-34       Shields 0-0       HTK 40      Sensors 96/96/0/0      DCR 6      PPV 6
Maint Life 3.35 Years     MSP 618    AFR 75%    IFR 1.0%    1YR 83    5YR 1,251    Max Repair 187.5 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 2   BRG   AUX   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Hyperion Drive Yards H-375 Frigate Engine 'Gryphon' (2)    Power 750    Fuel Use 46.19%    Signature 375    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 432,000 Litres    Range 22.4 billion km (51 days at full power)

Arcadia Weapons Systems 102 mm Defense Battery Mk III (2x4)    Range 30,000km     TS: 5,000 km/s     Power 3-3     RM 30,000 km    ROF 5       
Arcadia Weapons Systems Defense Battery Director Mk III (1)     Max Range: 96,000 km   TS: 5,100 km/s     90 79 69 58 48 38 27 17 6 0
Chryson Dynamics 6 TW Induction Drive Cell Mk VI (1)     Total Power Output 6.2    Exp 5%

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Long-Range Array (1)     GPS 14400     Range 83.1m km    Resolution 150
Scamander Corporation Series XVI High-Resolution Array (1)     GPS 1920     Range 42.4m km    Resolution 20
Scamander Corporation Series XVI Missile Warning Array (1)     GPS 96     Range 15.6m km    MCR 1.4m km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Array (1)     Sensitivity 96     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  77.5m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Array (1)     Sensitivity 96     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  77.5m km


Off-Topic: Excelsior class Jump Frigate • show

Excelsior class Jump Frigate      7,500 tons       217 Crew       972.7 BP       TCS 150    TH 750    EM 0
5000 km/s    JR 4-100      Armour 3-34       Shields 0-0       HTK 46      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 7      PPV 9
Maint Life 3.33 Years     MSP 567    AFR 64%    IFR 0.9%    1YR 78    5YR 1,165    Max Repair 187.5 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 2   BRG   AUX   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Legion Gravitic Corps LG-150 Gravity Drive 'Farscape'     Max Ship Size 7500 tons    Distance 100k km     Squadron Size 4

Hyperion Drive Yards H-375 Frigate Engine 'Gryphon' (2)    Power 750    Fuel Use 46.19%    Signature 375    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 420,000 Litres    Range 21.8 billion km (50 days at full power)

Arcadia Weapons Systems 102 mm Defense Battery Mk III (3x4)    Range 30,000km     TS: 5,000 km/s     Power 3-3     RM 30,000 km    ROF 5       
Arcadia Weapons Systems Defense Battery Director Mk III (1)     Max Range: 96,000 km   TS: 5,100 km/s     90 79 69 58 48 38 27 17 6 0
Chryson Dynamics 9 TW Induction Drive Cell Mk VI (1)     Total Power Output 9.2    Exp 5%

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Onboard Targeting System (1)     GPS 16     Range 6.4m km    MCR 574.5k km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


On the Hellfire-class Frigates: Prior to the presentation of this briefing segment, Lord Admiral Criasus exercised his authority as Speaker of the Assembly to rule that no comments, save questions for clarification, would be permitted during this segment due to the inflammatory nature of the subject. This ruling having been given, Lord High Admiral Macaria then gave his summary of the doctrinal role of the class:

“The primary battle role Hellfire-class frigate is to provide long-range gunnery support to a Legion Navy battle fleet engaged against an opponent with similarly long-ranged direct fire weapons, such as would otherwise preclude a full-speed charge into railgun range.”

As this was the entire summary, several members of the assembly immediately presented verbal accusations of partisanship and dereliction of duty, which cries were only silenced by an extended sequence of gavel-banging and threats of expulsion from the Speaker.

The comment period proceeded hardly much better:
  • Lord Admiral Caerus Priapus requested clarification as to whether battlefield circumstances had ever in fact precluded a full-speed charge into railgun range, to which Lord High Admiral Macaria replied, “Not to my knowledge, no.” At this the previous slate of accusations were once again presented by members of the assembly in a less formal fashion, this presentation carrying on for several minutes over the loud objections of the Speaker. Fortunately, a follow-on sequence of more muted objections from members of the Imperial Guard detachment had the desired effect.
  • The subsequent questioner, whose name has strangely been stricken from the record, requested clarification on why the class was named Hellfire rather than the arguably more appropriate name of Half-Ass. This request for clarification was not answered.
  • At this juncture, Lord Admiral Criasus declared the clarification period completed and requested that Lord High Admiral Macaria proceed to the next segment of his briefing.
Off-Topic: Hellfire class Frigate • show

Hellfire class Frigate      7,500 tons       258 Crew       1,192.1 BP       TCS 150    TH 750    EM 0
5000 km/s      Armour 2-34       Shields 0-0       HTK 55      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 4      PPV 42
Maint Life 2.74 Years     MSP 577    AFR 112%    IFR 1.6%    1YR 111    5YR 1,659    Max Repair 187.5 MSP
Commander    Control Rating 2   BRG   AUX   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Hyperion Drive Yards H-375 Frigate Engine 'Gryphon' (2)    Power 750    Fuel Use 46.19%    Signature 375    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 385,000 Litres    Range 20 billion km (46 days at full power)

Priapus Energetics Laboratory PEL-4 Neon Beam Cannon (6)    Range 192,000km     TS: 5,000 km/s     Power 10-4    ROF 15       
Arcadia Weapons Systems Medium Battery Director Mk III (2)     Max Range: 192,000 km   TS: 5,100 km/s     95 90 84 79 74 69 64 58 53 48
Chryson Dynamics 12 TW Induction Drive Cell Mk VI (2)     Total Power Output 24.2    Exp 5%

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Onboard Targeting System (1)     GPS 16     Range 6.4m km    MCR 574.5k km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


On the Invincible-class Light Cruisers: “The Invincible-class light cruiser is intended as a direct upgrade and replacement of the Defiant class, and thus the former fills the same doctrinal role as the latter. Based on battlefield experience with the Defiant class, the Invincible class is armed with secondary batteries for point defense, enabling truly independent cruiser squadron operations against probable missile-wielding threats.”

“Of note, the Invincible class does not incorporate a fighter bay and therefore does not carry a R-56 or AR-56 reconnaissance fighter as part of its mission payload. Minimal fighter reconnaissance capability is provided by the Judgment Day-class light jump cruiser.”

“The Judgment Day class itself is armed with point defense batteries, thus rectifying a particular long-standing embarrassment. However, to accomplish this it has been necessary to reduce the armor thickness of the class by half compared to the Invincible class. Initial experience against the Republic of Belaire Navy has suggested that this is not a severe handicap in a jump point assault scenario, but this has not yet been established as a matter of conclusive fact.”

As the Invincible class had to this point seen limited combat action, few of the Lords Admiral had particular opinions to express during the discussion period - much to the relief of the Speaker of the Assembly:
  • Lord Admiral Chryson noted that the point defense battery armament of the class, while useful, would not be sufficient for a full cruiser squadron to defend itself from even one Slava-class escort cruiser, let alone a squadron of them, and therefore the concept of “independent operations” remained doubtful.
  • Lord Admiral Priapus raised the counter-point that while complete protection would not be possible with point defense batteries alone, contributions from the main 152 mm batteries along with the heavy armor of the class would allow an Invincible squadron to close the range with minimal damage against a Slava, affecting a net battlefield victory.
  • Lord Admiral Gaia Pandia, adjacent to both of these points, noted that while independent operations against a strong enemy fleet would be dangerous at best, convoy raiding against enemy flanks could prove a valuable service and would require sufficiently heavy armament to deal with light escorts, a role the Invincible class was therefore well-suited to.
Off-Topic: Invincible class Light Cruiser • show

Invincible class Light Cruiser      15,000 tons       470 Crew       2,122 BP       TCS 300    TH 1,500    EM 0
5000 km/s      Armour 6-54       Shields 0-0       HTK 95      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 12      PPV 72
Maint Life 2.31 Years     MSP 1,061    AFR 150%    IFR 2.1%    1YR 271    5YR 4,062    Max Repair 375 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 2   BRG   AUX   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Morale Check Required   

Hyperion Drive Yards H-750 Cruiser Engine 'Minotaur' (2)    Power 1500    Fuel Use 32.66%    Signature 750    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 568,000 Litres    Range 20.9 billion km (48 days at full power)

Arcadia Weapons Systems 152 mm Medium Battery Mk III (8x4)    Range 90,000km     TS: 5,000 km/s     Power 9-3     RM 30,000 km    ROF 15       
Arcadia Weapons Systems 102 mm Defense Battery Mk III (8x4)    Range 30,000km     TS: 5,000 km/s     Power 3-3     RM 30,000 km    ROF 5       
Arcadia Weapons Systems Medium Battery Director Mk III (2)     Max Range: 192,000 km   TS: 5,100 km/s     95 90 84 79 74 69 64 58 53 48
Arcadia Weapons Systems Defense Battery Director Mk III (2)     Max Range: 96,000 km   TS: 5,100 km/s     90 79 69 58 48 38 27 17 6 0
Chryson Dynamics 12 TW Induction Drive Cell Mk VI (4)     Total Power Output 48.4    Exp 5%

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Onboard Targeting System (1)     GPS 16     Range 6.4m km    MCR 574.5k km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


Off-Topic: Judgment Day class Light Jump Cruiser • show

Judgment Day class Light Jump Cruiser      15,000 tons       449 Crew       2,150.3 BP       TCS 300    TH 1,500    EM 0
5000 km/s    JR 4-100      Armour 3-54       Shields 0-0       HTK 84      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 15      PPV 24
Maint Life 2.29 Years     MSP 1,343    AFR 120%    IFR 1.7%    1YR 348    5YR 5,215    Max Repair 514.4 MSP
Hangar Deck Capacity 250 tons     
Captain    Control Rating 2   BRG   AUX   
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Flight Crew Berths 20    Morale Check Required   

Legion Gravitic Corps LG-300 Gravity Drive 'Calypso'     Max Ship Size 15000 tons    Distance 100k km     Squadron Size 4

Hyperion Drive Yards H-750 Cruiser Engine 'Minotaur' (2)    Power 1500    Fuel Use 32.66%    Signature 750    Explosion 10%
Fuel Capacity 594,000 Litres    Range 21.8 billion km (50 days at full power)

Arcadia Weapons Systems 102 mm Defense Battery Mk III (8x4)    Range 30,000km     TS: 5,000 km/s     Power 3-3     RM 30,000 km    ROF 5       
Arcadia Weapons Systems Defense Battery Director Mk III (2)     Max Range: 96,000 km   TS: 5,100 km/s     90 79 69 58 48 38 27 17 6 0
Chryson Dynamics 12 TW Induction Drive Cell Mk VI (2)     Total Power Output 24.2    Exp 5%

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Onboard Targeting System (1)     GPS 16     Range 6.4m km    MCR 574.5k km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


With this, the review of the Legion Navy proper was concluded, and a weary Lord Admiral Criasus ordered that the session be briefly adjourned for light refreshments.

----
« Last Edit: June 22, 2021, 02:42:45 PM by nuclearslurpee »
 
The following users thanked this post: Black, El Pip, BAGrimm, Warer, Foxxonius Augustus

Offline nuclearslurpee (OP)

  • Vice Admiral
  • **********
  • Posts: 1120
  • Thanked: 744 times
  • Radioactive frozen beverage.
Lord High Admiral Hilaera Antilochus, as commander of the Survey Fleet, was the next flag officer to brief the assembly, naturally on the status of Legion surveying efforts and doctrine. While this had hardly been the most anticipated briefing of the session, at this stage many of the Lords Admiral welcomed the presentation of what was expected to be a far from contentious subject, after the excitement of earlier discussions. Once again, excerpts are presented below:

On Legion Survey Fleet doctrine: “The Duranium Legion Survey Fleet seeks to accomplish three principal objectives. The first of these objectives is to discover the topography of the galactic jump point network, in particular the routes of travel between our own holdings and those of alien polities. The second of these objectives is to locate new rich sources of trans-Newtonian elements to support and grow the economy of the Legion. The third and final of these objectives is to maintain the security of the Legion’s borders through the detection of incursions made by vessels belonging to alien polities.”

“The Legion Survey Fleet operates two types of vessels to accomplish its objectives. The first two of these objectives are assigned to the Ars Magica classes of multi-purpose survey frigates. The third of these objectives is assigned to the Gatekeeper, and formerly Warden, classes of deep space traffic monitoring vessels.”

In a brief comment period, Lord Grand Admiral Tethys Argyron noted that several survey vessels had been attacked and destroyed by hostile powers, and inquired candidly whether closer cooperation with the Legion Navy proper for reconnaissance and border defense could improve survey fleet effectiveness and reduce casualty rates. Lord High Admiral Antilochus was noncommittal in her response, noting that the Legion Navy after all had more than enough work to do as things presently stood.

On the Ars Magica-class Survey Frigates: “With regard to survey operations, the primary role of the Ars Magica-class survey frigate is twofold: one one hand, to carry out gravitational survey operations in unexplored star systems with the objective of uncovering new jump points in these systems; on the other hand, to carry out orbital mineral surveys of system bodies allowing the Legion high command to assess the industrial value of each system. The Ars Magica class therefore is designed to a multipurpose mission profile, and is equipped with both gravitational and geological survey sensor suites.”

“Operational experience in first contact situations has revealed that the lack of active sensing capabilities aboard the original Ars Magica class led to deficient intelligence-gathering capabilities, a formerly neglected component of the survey mission. The Mark II design has addressed this in addition to a general upgrade of the class propulsion systems to accelerate survey efforts and to improve the ability of the class to flee from hostile contacts.”

As the upgrade of the Ars Magica class was well-understood from previous discussions, few comments were offered at this juncture. However, the comments that were raised followed a common theme, stated first by Lord Admiral Palaestra Abderus from the viewpoint of the Duratus Mining Corps who frankly inquired as to why multipurpose survey vessels were preferable to operating two specialized classes which might perform each task more efficiently. In a well-reasoned reply, Lord High Admiral Antilochus asserted that while specialized vessels could be more efficient once in-system, not every system required both missions to be performed, and the logistics of moving assets to where they were actually needed would in fact be less efficient in the grand scheme. A multipurpose vessel, she argued, was perhaps less efficient but always certain to be useful, thus being logistically efficient. The assembly at large concurred with the wisdom of the assessment, though some of the Lords Admiral remained unconvinced but did not choose to press the Lord High Admiral on this matter.

Off-Topic: Ars Magica Mk II class Survey Frigate • show

Ars Magica Mk II class Survey Frigate      8,500 tons       141 Crew       899.7 BP       TCS 170    TH 375    EM 0
2205 km/s    JR 1-25(C)      Armour 2-37       Shields 0-0       HTK 41      Sensors 8/8/2/2      DCR 8      PPV 0
Maint Life 7.04 Years     MSP 1,049    AFR 72%    IFR 1.0%    1YR 37    5YR 556    Max Repair 100 MSP
Captain    Control Rating 2   BRG   SCI   
Intended Deployment Time: 84 months    Morale Check Required   

Legion Gravitic Corps LG-170 Gravity Drive 'Hermes'     Max Ship Size 8500 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 1

Hyperion Drive Yards HC-375 Deep Space Engine 'Cyclops' (1)    Power 375    Fuel Use 5.77%    Signature 375    Explosion 5%
Fuel Capacity 401,000 Litres    Range 147 billion km (771 days at full power)

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Onboard Targeting System (1)     GPS 16     Range 6.4m km    MCR 574.5k km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Geological Survey Sensors (2)   2 Survey Points Per Hour
Gravitational Survey Sensors (2)   2 Survey Points Per Hour


On the Gatekeeper-class Traffic Wardens: “With regard to survey operations, the primary role of the traffic warden vessel type is to provide active and passive monitoring of unsecured frontier jump points, most importantly providing early warning of hostile incursion to the Legion high command.”

“In practice, these vessels have served in a variety of roles beyond the intended mission profile, including reconnaissance, intelligence, and fleet auxiliary support roles. While this in some cases can be considered to detract from the intended mission as a survey fleet vessel, the good service given by these classes cannot be denied.”

“The Gatekeeper class in particular has been designed to rectify shortcomings of the original Warden-class design, including mounting a long-range active sensor in place of the targeting scanner used by the Warden class. More importantly, as the original Warden class required jump escort by the Ars Magica frigates, practical experience quickly showed that self-jump capability was necessary for logistical flexibility and this has been installed on the Gatekeeper-class traffic monitors.”

There were surprisingly a number of comments from the assembly:
  • Lord Admiral Limos, among a few others, noted that the displacement of the Gatekeeper class was one-third again over that of the preceding Warden class. A smaller vessel, he posited, ought to be able to maintain a similar performance profile while being less vulnerable to detection by enemy sensors.
  • On the other hand, Lord Admiral Chryson complained of the inherent limitations of an auxiliary-type scout vessel in terms of sensor payload and lack of electronic intelligence-gathering capability. While Lord High Admiral Antilochus pointed out in response that the traffic monitors were not, in fact, scout craft, further comments from the assembly made it clear that many in the Lords Admiralty held the opinion that they certainly ought to be scout craft at any rate.
  • Lord Admiral Agamemnon noted that the onboard cryogenic capacity of the traffic monitors had proven useful in both fleet and rescue operations, for the benefit of the assembly.
  • After a word of caution from Lord Admiral Criasus to refrain from discussing matters of doctrinal evolution, the comment period shortly came to a close.
Off-Topic: Gatekeeper class Traffic Monitor • show

Gatekeeper class Traffic Monitor      4,000 tons       40 Crew       188.9 BP       TCS 80    TH 225    EM 0
2813 km/s    JR 1-25(C)      Armour 1-22       Shields 0-0       HTK 18      Sensors 8/8/0/0      DCR 1      PPV 0
MSP 29    Max Repair 45 MSP
Cryogenic Berths 600   
Commander    Control Rating 1   BRG   
Intended Deployment Time: 3 months   

Legion Gravitic Corps LGC-80 Gravity Drive 'Gatehouse'     Max Ship Size 4000 tons    Distance 25k km     Squadron Size 1

Hyperion Drive Yards HC-225 Deep Space Engine 'Orpheon' (1)    Power 225    Fuel Use 3.82%    Signature 225    Explosion 4%
Fuel Capacity 99,000 Litres    Range 116.8 billion km (480 days at full power)

Scamander Corporation Series XVI Onboard Targeting System (1)     GPS 16     Range 6.4m km    MCR 574.5k km    Resolution 1
Scamander Corporation Series XVI Traffic Scanner (1)     GPS 2400     Range 33.9m km    Resolution 150
Scamander Corporation Series VIII RF Wave Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km
Scamander Corporation Series VIII Infrared Scanner (1)     Sensitivity 8     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  22.4m km


To conclude her briefing, Lord High Admiral Antilochus provided the assembly with an overview of the Legion’s survey efforts to date:

Supplementary Material: Legion Galactic Map as of 21 May 4009

----

To conclude the Naval Review session, Lord High Admiral Aeneas Chalcon briefed the assembly on the state of the Legion Industrial Command, responsible for colonization, logistical support, and resource extraction operations. As this was after all a Naval Conference, rather than an economic summit, Lord High Admiral Chalcon opted to forego a review of the numerous auxiliary and industrial ship classes currently in operation, a decision much lauded by his fellow Lords Admiral.

A man of few words, the Lord High Admiral briefly described an auxiliary fleet which had pursued a policy of steady, measured growth, most apparent in the increasing size of the Achelous and Obsidian classes of orbital platforms as available shipyard tonnage had expanded over time. In the near future, he said, the Legion would transition away from the current 80,000-ton standard for freighters and similar classes to a larger 120,000-ton standard allowing for 75,000 tons of cargo capacity per vessel.

The chief challenge faced by the Legion Industrial Command, according to the Lord High Admiral, was that of balancing the need for greater shipping speed against the need to conserve fuel stockpiles by using high-efficiency propulsion systems. Despite a concerted and heavy investment in extrasolar colonies, including multiple convoys servicing both Adamantine and Alpha Centauri colonies, no extrasolar Legion colony had yet eclipsed a population of ten million, chiefly attributed to the long distances these convoys had to traverse. As quicker engines would demand more fuel than the Legion’s present fragile equilibrium could provide, expansion of the fuel harvesting operation at Jupiter would be a necessary prerequisite to support further colonial expansion.

Having said all of this, once again the Lord High Admiral was forced to concede that this was after all a Naval Conference, and that the Lords Admiral at hand were chiefly concerned not with the minutiae of Industrial Command assets but rather the importance of these to Naval operations. To this end, Lord High Admiral Chalcon had also provided an annotated map of the Legion’s current colonial operations  each of which would eventually require a sufficient frontier defense to be provided by the Legion Navy at large.



In lieu of a more formal comment period, Lord Admiral Criasus opened the floor to a more open-ended discussion, seeking for the assembly to determine the tangible importance of the Legion’s logistical footprint. At this stage the discussion largely took on the form of identifying long-term potential challenges, which would be addressed in the later doctrinal sessions as considerations for the overall fleet organization and deployment:
  • Broadly, the Lords Admiral readily agreed that the extent of Legion territory which had to be defended was centered around, but not limited to, the Mongolica Loop as discovered in August of the previous year.
  • While one “end” of the Loop would be readily secured by expansion of the base in the Mongolica system itself, a large gap remained between Alpha Centauri and Devil’s Hand which left Sol itself somewhat open to potential enemy incursions. This was recognized to leave Devil’s Hand in particular vulnerable to being cut off logistically - a severe concern, given the as-yet undeciphered construct in that system which could yet prove to be of great value to the Legion.
  • The colonies in both Alpha Centauri and Adamantine served well to secure other chief access routes to both the Mongolica Loop and to Sol itself, and thus should continue to be expanded and fortified as feasible.
  • A group of Lords Admiral championed by Lord High Admiral Antilochus were strongly in favor of establishing a “Kuiper-style” command post in the Kruger 60 system to secure the gap in the Mongolica Loop and to control the supply route to Devil’s Hand. While this struck many among the assembly as a reasonable plan, some members of the assembly expressed concerns as to the logistical feasibility of establishing yet another operational base, although even these conceded that such a base would be a useful point from which to launch an offensive against the Eta Cassiopeiae Mongolicans.
Carefully avoided in all discussions amongst the assembly was the topic of the pressing economic struggle still afflicting the Duranium Legion. Most pressingly, while supplies of duranium and gallicite had been comfortably augmented by salvage recovery from Belaire shipwrecks, corundium supplies continued to be scarce which severely limited the ability of the Legion economic planners to construct additional mining infrastructure with which to solve this conundrum. Ultimately, a solution to this problem would not be forthcoming from the Lords Admiralty at least for the time being.

With the quite exhaustive business of the Naval Review thus completed, Lord Admiral Criasus dismissed the assembly for the day, after issuing a stern word of caution against instigating any bar fights over the Hellfire class or indeed any other subject of contention. Perhaps due to the strenuous nature of the day’s session, to say nothing of the solemn ceremony which had preceded it, the Lords Admiral for once did not greatly struggle to follow such an order. Thus concluded the first day of the Naval Conference.

----

OOC Notes: Finally we have a full review of the Legion Navy as it stands having recently defeated the last major Belaire fleet and seized control of the Belaire home system. I hope you are all satisfied, at over 9,000 words requiring two posts to fully present this should meet any demand for exacting detail and hubristic Lords Admiral commentary the readership could possibly make of me - though as I have been known to be wrong on occasion, I shall endeavor to satisfy any additional specific request which is within the realm of reason. Granted, some 3,000 of those words are buried in the statblocks, but even so this remains the wordiest update to date.

As an aside I will note the change in presentation of the statblocks, while some do enjoy perusing the ship designs I do hope collapsing these under the off-topic tags helps with the overall flow of the post and perhaps preserves the scroll wheels of your mice.

With this out of the way, everything is in place to begin several days of well-reasoned, professional, and utmostly respectful debate about the future of the Legion Navy. Surely nothing will go wrong.


 
The following users thanked this post: mavikfelna, Black, HighTemplar, BAGrimm, Warer, Foxxonius Augustus, Albacore

Offline kingflute

  • Chief Petty Officer
  • ***
  • k
  • Posts: 33
  • Thanked: 17 times
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #84 on: May 12, 2021, 11:06:40 AM »
Should I be imagining the Legion high command's members as being akin to Blackadder's General Melchit?
 
The following users thanked this post: nuclearslurpee

Offline Black

  • Gold Supporter
  • Commodore
  • *****
  • B
  • Posts: 727
  • Thanked: 149 times
  • 2021 Supporter 2021 Supporter : Donate for 2021
    2020 Supporter 2020 Supporter : Donate for 2020
    Gold Supporter Gold Supporter : Support the forums with a Gold subscription
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #85 on: May 12, 2021, 03:54:09 PM »
Well written and formated posts. Organizational chart (nice icons representing the ships) and clear galactic map are welcomed additions. Overall very enjoyable and I am looking forward to continuation of the Naval Conference.
 
The following users thanked this post: BAGrimm, nuclearslurpee

Offline nuclearslurpee (OP)

  • Vice Admiral
  • **********
  • Posts: 1120
  • Thanked: 744 times
  • Radioactive frozen beverage.
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #86 on: May 12, 2021, 10:53:09 PM »
Should I be imagining the Legion high command's members as being akin to Blackadder's General Melchit?

You certainly may. I say this regrettably being unaware of who this is, exactly, but being fairly certain that he must be an apt point of reference by the very mention.

Well written and formated posts. Organizational chart (nice icons representing the ships) and clear galactic map are welcomed additions. Overall very enjoyable and I am looking forward to continuation of the Naval Conference.

Amidst the sea of those clamoring for violence and drama, it is nice to encounter readers who admire that which is truly important in life, this being the sublime pleasures of organizational minutiae. Your approval is thus much appreciated.
 
The following users thanked this post: Warer

Offline El Pip

  • Warrant Officer, Class 1
  • *****
  • E
  • Posts: 94
  • Thanked: 40 times
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #87 on: May 14, 2021, 01:22:58 AM »
Truly a comprehensive pair of updates to cover a most interesting first day of the conference and that is not a phrase you hear often, certainly not sincerely.

I am now deeply suspicious of Lord Captain Criasus, he appears to be a fan of future-space-PowerPoint and to have views on the tastefulness, or otherwise, of aspect ratios. A man to watch, but only from a safe distance.

Quote
Tellingly, none of the Legion’s three currently-active battle fleets was actually organized in this manner at the time of the Naval Conference.
I would have been more shocked if anyone was actually following the Legion doctrine manual.

Quote
Lord Admiral Agamemnon at this stage requested additional information regarding what Lord Admiral Limos intended to do about this.
This entire exchange was just wonderful.

Mildly surprised the JR-1014s are getting scrapped, surely hurling them through jump points so they at least gather knowledge would be more in keeping with Legion thinking. Yes it is a suicide mission for the crews, but it is not like anyone in the Admiralty has cared about such things before.

The discussion around the Bellerophon was somewhat limited, I suppose changes in tactics and doctrine could improve their chances of survival but just adds more staff work for the fleet officers trying to use the things. I must also express my concern that a Mk.II with smaller sensors would be a mistake, extra detection range is always valuable and we cannot expect alien technology to stand still or for future foes to have the same technology as our current opponents. A destroyer sized vessel with the same sensors and the extra space devoted to armour and more rail guns remains the best medium term solution.

Some excellent "clarifications" in the Hellfire debate, I await the full discussion with interest.

The dream of independent cruiser squadron operations appears to remain a dream, the ongoing discussion of raiding also appears a hard idea to kill. Both ideas seem to rely on the enemy leaving key Jump Points un-guarded so the Legion can break into rear areas and wreak havoc, as I see it there are two problems with this. 1. It does rely on the enemy being very co-operative and making basic mistakes. 2. If the key jump points are un-guarded, why not just send in a main fleet? Something for discussion in the doctrine sessions I suggest.

I am sure that Admiral Antilochus' indifference to her survey crew's chances of survival have made her deeply popular in the Survey Fleet. I am slashing the odds on her being the next senior Legion officer to have a tragic accident.

Some excellent industrial ostriching from the Legion towards the end, managing to avoid discussion on any of the mineral problems facing the Empire. If nothing else the problems with fuel and gallicite supply should influence doctrinal discussion - if those factors are the limit then does the Legion want a few fast ships or a greater number of slower ships. Yet through great skill they have avoided facing such hard questions so they have more time to argue about the Hellfire. Top work.
 
The following users thanked this post: Black, nuclearslurpee

Offline nuclearslurpee (OP)

  • Vice Admiral
  • **********
  • Posts: 1120
  • Thanked: 744 times
  • Radioactive frozen beverage.
Re: The Official Chronicle of the Duranium Legion
« Reply #88 on: May 16, 2021, 09:16:54 AM »
I am now deeply suspicious of Lord Captain Criasus, he appears to be a fan of future-space-PowerPoint and to have views on the tastefulness, or otherwise, of aspect ratios. A man to watch, but only from a safe distance.

Indeed, this is why I always sit in the back rows at conferences, myself.

Quote
Mildly surprised the JR-1014s are getting scrapped, surely hurling them through jump points so they at least gather knowledge would be more in keeping with Legion thinking. Yes it is a suicide mission for the crews, but it is not like anyone in the Admiralty has cared about such things before.

The Lords Admiral to whom your comment has been forwarded are confused. What else could be meant by "scrapping"?  :P

Quote
The discussion around the Bellerophon was somewhat limited, I suppose changes in tactics and doctrine could improve their chances of survival but just adds more staff work for the fleet officers trying to use the things. I must also express my concern that a Mk.II with smaller sensors would be a mistake, extra detection range is always valuable and we cannot expect alien technology to stand still or for future foes to have the same technology as our current opponents. A destroyer sized vessel with the same sensors and the extra space devoted to armour and more rail guns remains the best medium term solution.

Speaking as the estimable historian, it would appear that the Bellerophon debate being considerably less contentious the major part of the Lords Admiral were content to save the major part of the mudslinging fistfighting discussion for the appropriate session

Quote
The dream of independent cruiser squadron operations appears to remain a dream, the ongoing discussion of raiding also appears a hard idea to kill. Both ideas seem to rely on the enemy leaving key Jump Points un-guarded so the Legion can break into rear areas and wreak havoc, as I see it there are two problems with this. 1. It does rely on the enemy being very co-operative and making basic mistakes. 2. If the key jump points are un-guarded, why not just send in a main fleet? Something for discussion in the doctrine sessions I suggest.

This I shall not comment on, save to observe in a coincidental manner how fortunate it is that the very next session is a doctrinal session.

Quote
I am sure that Admiral Antilochus' indifference to her survey crew's chances of survival have made her deeply popular in the Survey Fleet. I am slashing the odds on her being the next senior Legion officer to have a tragic accident.

Lord High Admiral Antilochus would perhaps phrase it not as indifference, but rather as turf protection. The survey role may be dangerous but whose who perform it also see it as glorious, certainly the exploits of famous survey frigates such as Adamant make for excellent recruitment material. Allowing the unwashed masses of "normal" Navy men to share in this glory could certainly be said to be intolerable. Intolerable to whom? the rank and file survey fleet crew members might ask.

Quote
Some excellent industrial ostriching from the Legion towards the end, managing to avoid discussion on any of the mineral problems facing the Empire. If nothing else the problems with fuel and gallicite supply should influence doctrinal discussion - if those factors are the limit then does the Legion want a few fast ships or a greater number of slower ships. Yet through great skill they have avoided facing such hard questions so they have more time to argue about the Hellfire. Top work.

It is always important to have the correct priorities.
 

Offline nuclearslurpee (OP)

  • Vice Admiral
  • **********
  • Posts: 1120
  • Thanked: 744 times
  • Radioactive frozen beverage.
OOC Note: As a reminder for the benefit of the reader, the agenda and attendance for the Naval Conference can be found in the first post of Chapter XXI and may be of some use to keep track of the various personalities involved as well as to be apprised of upcoming topics of discussion - about which speculation is as always encouraged!

----

22 May 4009

0800: Session on Fleet and Naval Doctrine, Duranium Legion Naval Conference

In the days leading up to the Naval Conference, during which session agendas had been carefully planned by the appropriate sub-department deep in the halls of the Legion high command, the first Doctrinal session had been approached with the greatest care. Simply put, the challenge of such a session was the attendance: with sixteen Lords Admiral in attendance, it was a certainty that sixteen distinct and irreconcilable doctrines would be submitted to the assembly. The quick realization that this number would in fact only be fifteen, as the Lord Admiral Imperator was not permitted to participate, was of little comfort to the Conference planners. Neither did any member of the planning sub-department hold out hope that the assembly would be able to reach a doctrinal compromise from scratch; as every point was likely to be contentious there would be no common ground on which to build a consensus. The solution was almost tautological in its statement, if not in its execution: in order to reach a compromise, a compromise would be needed.

Specifically, the structure on which the planning sub-department had settled would require a set of initial doctrinal proposals to be submitted by teams of at least three Lords Admiral apiece. These would form the basis for following discussions conducted by breakout sessions of four or five Lords Admiral apiece, with each breakout group consisting of representatives from the four previous teams. The goal of the breakout sessions would be to reconcile the various plans, with the hope that the reconciliation proposals would find enough common ground to allow the proceedings to move forward to a series of final votes on the remaining differences. While the majority of the Lords Admiral, in fact a supermajority of all of them, objected to being forced to engage in group work which they had collectively been glad to see the last of after graduating from the Legion Military Academy, ultimately all agreed that this would be the most feasible approach. The smaller groups of Lords Admiral would be more likely to reach some form of consensus at each stage of the process, while limiting the selection of proposals before the full assembly to only a few instead of fifteen would permit reconciliation in a reasonable timeframe. While some might have argued that the planning sub-department was perhaps too optimistic regarding the ability of the Lords Admiral to reach any form of amicable agreement, on the whole this was considered the approach most likely to return any usable result at all.

With this settled, the initial teams had been determined prior to the start of the Naval Conference, and indeed each team had held meetings ahead of the main event to hammer out the rough outlines of their proposals, which would be finalized in a preparatory period at the beginning of the session to account for the previous day’s discussions. To open these proceedings, Lord Admiral Criasus acting in his capacity as Speaker of the Assembly would first present a fleet doctrine labeled simply as “Mark II”. This was intended not as a serious proposal, but rather as a presentation of how the status quo would look were the Legion Navy to continue adhering to its existing doctrinal basis, with following discussion planned to highlight shortcomings which the initial team proposals should aim to overcome.

A firm believer in the efficacy of visual aids, Lord Admiral Criasus accompanied his brief presentation with a clarifying diagram of the “proposed” fleet organization:



As this fleet organization was hardly different from the existing (theoretical) one, the Lord Admiral wasted little time in reviewing the doctrine in detail. Indeed, the only change of substance was the transition of the light cruiser class from Defiant to Invincible, though this did in fact have deep ramifications for what was superficially the same doctrine.

Briefly, Lord Admiral Criasus noted the following salient points:
  • The transition to Invincible-class light cruisers forced a reduction of the fighter complement from four to one, with the AR-56 Osprey selected to replace the venerable R-56 in this fleet organization. Were this doctrinal approach to be maintained, the loss of fighter reconnaissance would likely not be too deeply felt, due to the long-ranged sensor capabilities of the Bellerophon class (likely a Mk II variant).
  • Doctrinally, the detachment of the frigate squadron in any close-range beam combat scenario would be formalized to preserve the numbers of Bellerophons in service.
  • Similarly, the existing policy of Hellfire squadron attachment as specialist units rather than regular fleet units would be formalized as well, this being in addition to the de facto status quo a compromise position between the Hellfire advocates (who wished the class to continue in service as a Mk II variant) and the opposition (who wished to limit the role of the class so as not to supplant railgun-centric doctrines).
  • The effect of transitioning to the Invincible class would improve point defense, but not offensive firepower in terms of the number of 152 mm batteries brought to bear. Thus, the Mark II plan would offer no meaningful increase in firepower over the original fleet organization of 1 Jan 4000.
  • As a thought experiment, a “Mark II-B” plan consisting of two light cruiser squadrons escorted by a single destroyer squadron and the same frigate squadron could be proposed. The main idea of such a concept, the Lord Admiral explained, was to show that the same point defense capability could be maintained for a single fleet while doubling offensive firepower. In practice, of course, this ratio of light cruisers to destroyers would be entirely impractical, and the plan was not to be seriously considered.
Little discussion was raised from the assembly, as of course all present were familiar with existing Legion Naval doctrine and the various teams were more eager to finalize their own proposals than spend time discussing the doctrinal relics of the past. Therefore, from 0830 to 0945 team meetings were held to finalize proposals, followed by a brief break during which light refreshments were served ahead of the actual presentations.

----

1000: Presentations of Initial-Stage Legion Navy Doctrinal Proposals

As the members of the assembly resumed their session having been suitably refreshed, Lord Admiral Criasus called the assembly to order and issued instructions for the upcoming presentations. Each team in turn would briefly present their proposed doctrine and fleet organization, summarizing the key elements and any particularly noteworthy divergences from existing doctrine. After this a brief comment period would be allowed, similarly to how the previous day’s session had proceeded. Lord Admiral Criasus was quite emphatic, given the strong opinions regarding certain classes of vessel, that the comment period was to be restricted to broad doctrinal topics without any assessment of the value of individual ship classes. These would be considered in the following days, after which a final session would see the finalization of the future Naval doctrine incorporating the results of those sessions.

The first team to present their initial doctrinal proposal consisted of:
  • Lord Grand Admiral Thanatos Adrastus, Training High Command
  • Lord High Admiral Hilaera Antilochus, Survey Command
  • Lord Admiral Glycon Limos, Duratus Naval Corps
  • Lord Admiral Caerus Priapus, Cmdt. Duratus Military Academy
These four Lords Admiral collectively represented the most conservative elements of the Legion Navy, and as such presented a doctrinal proposal aimed at addressing the most salient concerns raised in the previous day’s Naval Review session, but otherwise diverging as little as possible from established Navy practices which had after all proven quite successful.



The so-called Conservative Team highlighted several points to demonstrate that serious thought had gone into their proposal besides determining how to do the least amount of work:
  • By replacing the Bellerophon squadron with a second light cruiser squadron, overall fleet firepower was increased compared to the original fleet organization of 1 Jan 4000. Due to the introduction of the versatile Invincible class, this was accomplished with an improvement in point defense capability as well.
  • The pair of destroyer squadrons would be maintained as previously, having proven eminently capable and quite necessary against large missile-armed fleets.
  • It had been noted in the discussion on fighter reconnaissance during the Naval Review that while the fighters were useful in theory - and admittedly in practice - opportunities for their use had proven elusive and in most cases the tonnage used to mount fighter bays on the Defiant class could have been better used. As only the Judgment Day class possessed such facilities, the pair of cruiser squadrons ensured that both passive and active reconnaissance capability would be present, without compromising the combat ability of the Invincible class.
  • Both the Bellerophon and Hellfire classes were to be relegated to attachment-only roles, with no designated place in the standard fleet organization. This would ensure that the basic Legion battle fleet was optimized for combat ability, while maintaining the frigate squadrons as supporting forces when necessary during a given campaign.
  • The 3+1 formula of combat and jump ships was maintained from existing doctrine. This was done primarily to ensure operational flexibility, i.e., to ensure that a Legion battle fleet could transit a jump point regardless of whether it had been previously stabilized. Lord Admiral Limos noted that this would have a secondary benefit of ensuring as seamless of a transition as possible between the old and new doctrines, as the change could be affected in practice by simply replacing the frigate squadrons (these barely being extant in any case) with new cruiser squadrons as they were commissioned.
This proposal being rather far from groundbreaking, the discussion of the comment period was not particularly extensive, certainly the following proposals would generate considerably more interest. In the main, the remaining Lords Admiral of the assembly expressed the general sense that the proposal was sound enough, and certainly addressed the most pressing failures of previous battles, but was otherwise uninspiring and hardly even an evolutionary step for the Legion Navy. Among others, Lord Grand Admiral Tethys Argyron questioned whether this proposal might encourage stagnation of the Legion Naval establishment, this being a salient concern for many among the assembly who feared to be found resting on their laurels by a future opponent.

Not unnoticed, however, was a crucial change made in a proposal which had otherwise abhored change, this being the realignment of the Hellfire squadrons to include organic jump capability, thus reducing the actual beam firepower of the squadrons. Leading the objections was Lord Admiral Palaestra Abderus, who noted that the full firepower of four Hellfires had been proven crucial in previous engagements to fully overpower the Belaire beam cruisers, and that reducing this firepower would likely have caused greater damage and even losses of railgun-armed vessels to the surviving Sovremennys. Lord Admiral Priapus countered this comment rather less than diplomatically, stating that as every other ship class in the Legion Navy had been successful while fighting in jump-capable squadrons, the Hellfire class ought to be held to the same standards. At this, both Lord Admiral Abderus as well as Lord Grand Admiral Argyron retorted with sincere questions regarding the fitness of Lord Admiral Priapus for his rank. Seeking to pacify the quarrelsome factionalists, Lord Grand Admiral Adrastus interjected, noting that while the opinion of his colleague was not entirely without rational basis, the intention had been to bring the Hellfire squadrons into line with existing doctrine with regards to jump capability and the resulting operational flexibility, noting that an updated version of the class would likely address any firepower concerns derived from previous experiences. At this, Lord Admiral Criasus thanked the Lord Grand Admiral for his statesmanlike composure and instructed the assembly to move along.

Taking a tangent to the previous discussion, Lord Admiral Niobe Chryson questioned whether the addition of a cruiser squadron was sufficient to make up for the firepower deficit incurred by an adherence to jump-capable squadron doctrine. Lord Admiral Limos suggested that this was likely to be the case, given that previous Legion fleets had certainly not felt a lack of firepower. Additionally, commenting from the assembly Lord Admiral Gaia Pandia noted that the point defense fire available from the Judgment Day class would ensure that it was not dead weight in a battle, unlike the Grand Cross class of which Lord Admiral Chryson’s hatred was well known.

Aside from a few final requests for clarification, this concluded the presentation of the first initial doctrinal proposal. Lord Admiral Criasus thus instructed that the assembly move on to consider the second proposal, presented by the firebrand team of:
  • Lord High Admiral Jack Macaria, Home Fleet Command
  • Lord High Admiral Aeneas Chalcon, Industrial Command
  • Lord Admiral Niobe Chryson, Construction Corps
From this team certainly a bombastic idea was expected, and the presented proposal did not disappoint. While not differing in spirit too greatly from the conservative doctrine proposed by the previous team, this proposal sought to address the question of sufficient firepower by means of introducing the first capital ship class in Legion Naval history, a 20,000-ton heavy cruiser class which would be armed with 203 mm railgun batteries to easily overpower any opponent the Legion Navy could conceive of fighting.



Author’s Note: The label “ex.” here indicates an “experimental” ship class, which at this time would not have even begun development beyond conceptual sketches (the designation as “experimental” in this case may be considered optimistic), and as such would not have yet received a formal letter designation from which ship names could be taken.

Appropriately, this team would become known as the Capital Ship Team after the centerpiece of their doctrinal proposal. The Capital Ship Team highlighted a number of further points they considered relevant, notably in contrast to the preceding proposal of the Conservative Team:
  • The key distinction, naturally, would be the squadron of 20,000-ton heavy cruisers (plus jump cruiser) forming the core of the battle fleet. These would be competitive with ships similar to the Belaire Kirov-class strike cruiser, though still a bit undersized compared to the 27,000-ton Mongolican Timurad-class battlecruisers.
  • Aside from heavy firepower, the major impact of the heavy cruiser squadron would be to redefine the roles of the Invincible-class light cruisers. While these would still maintain independent operational capabilities and deliver significant close-range firepower in battle, the light cruiser role in a full battle fleet would be that of a heavy escort to preserve the superior heavy cruisers.
  • The destroyer squadron role would not change much in the positive sense, however under the capital ship doctrine the role would be formally constrained to an escort and point defense role, whereas light cruiser squadrons would be formally considered a detachable asset to carry out secondary missions such as commerce raiding.
  • As an additional doctrinal change, the proposed 20,000-ton class of jump cruisers would be commanded by a Lord Captain, making clear the overall command of a battle fleet as the number of Captain-commanded cruisers doubled and also providing opportunities for Lord Captains to lead from the front lines rather than in administrative roles as had been the case for the Invasion of Belaire.
Naturally, as the heavy cruiser concept was not only a new ship design but an entirely new class, many of the assembly members were curious as to how such a ship might look. This interest had been anticipated, and Lord Admiral Chryson presented an abstracted conceptual design suggesting what the key characteristics might be:

   Experimental Heavy Cruiser Proposal
   20,000 tons     600 crew     1016 mm (8x127 mm) Composite Armor     Captain, Executive Officer
   4000-ton Heavy Cruiser Engine (2)     5000 km/s     Range 20 billion km
   203 mm Heavy Weapons Battery (10x4)     Range 160,000 km     ROF 15 sec
   102 mm Defense Battery Mk IV (10x4)     Range 40,000 km     ROF 5 sec


Shockingly, at least to the members of the capital ship team, there was significant pushback from the Lords Admiral against this new concept of a heavy cruiser class. This pushback was roughly delineated, albeit not chronologically during the comment period, into three generalized categories of, speaking politely, feedback:

First and least concerningly, several comments were made concerning the design proposal itself, which were by far the most welcomed parts of the larger discussion. Lord Admiral Gaia Pandia expressed some concern regarding the number and size of engines proposed, suggesting that while mounting more smaller engines might be less fuel and therefore space-efficient the benefits of smaller explosion risks and generally an increase in redundant capability in battle would improve the practical battle record of the class. Other Lords Admiral readily concurred, as while this point had not been considered to date the loss of half a ship’s propulsion from a single penetrating shot had often hampered the Legion Navy in battles. Several other Lords Admiral disagreed as to the number and type of guns which should be mounted, with most recommending an increase in heavy batteries at the expense of the defense batteries or vice versa. Notably, Lord Admiral Palaestra Abderus suggested that the promise of “heavy firepower” would better be suited by using half-size 152 mm batteries in place of the 102 mm defence guns, which would permit the rapid fire necessary for point defense while providing an overall far more powerful secondary battery. While intriguing to some, this idea was broadly panned with Lord High Admiral Macaria accusing Lord Admiral Abderus of completely misunderstanding how “point defense” was supposed to work.

The second, and by far most numerous, category of comments were however those dismissing the idea of a heavy cruiser class entirely. The comments made by Lord Grand Admiral Tethys Argyron can be considered representative of this sentiment; a larger ship class would be expensive, time-consuming to build, logistically-demanding particularly in terms of shipyard and maintenance requirements, and did not seem to offer any tangible advantages over a light cruiser-sized hull, which had already proven highly survivable in the face of enemy fire. If more firepower was truly necessary, there was no reason why heavier weapons could not be mounted on an Invincible-type hull instead. Against this comment particularly, Lord High Admiral Macaria fired back, observing that the objective of the Legion Navy was not merely to be “survivable” but rather to achieve total dominance in battle. In his view, a heavy, well-protected capital ship would be capable of bringing that dominance to the battlefield, particularly against a more capable opponent than the hapless Belaire Navy had been. After the Lord Grand Admiral had retorted by accusing her subordinate of being more concerned about phallic symbology than practical performance, Lord Admiral Criasus was forced to step in and end this line of discussion, which nevertheless resurfaced several more times throughout the comment period - usually with a more subdued tone being taken.

A final set of viewpoints expressed on the heavy cruiser proposal were those of a minority who questioned whether the 203 mm railgun batteries truly represented “heavy firepower” being only an incremental upgrade over the 152 mm batteries in terms of damage output. Particularly, a trio of Lords Admiral, led in spirit by Lord Grand Admiral Argyron and including Lords Admiral Abderus and Hydra, expressed the opinion that a true heavy weapon would be an upgraded particle beam cannon of some sort. Lord Admiral Agamemnon Hydra put forth one of the more well-reasoned arguments along these lines, noting that if the railgun-armed destroyers and light cruisers were to serve in an escort role it would make sense for the capital ships of a fleet to deliver long-range firepower to cripple an enemy force, preserving the escorts until mopping-up duty was called for. Lord High Admiral Macaria’s response to this logic, not fit for printing, was it suffices to say on the opposite end of the rationality scale. Seeking as much to prevent a brawl on the Conference floor as to provide a rational counterpoint, Lord Admiral Chryson interjected ostensibly seeking to “clarify” her superior officer’s comments. On one hand, she noted, the particle beam concept was still while not untested considered unproven by the major part of the Lords Admiralty, and the inaugural capital ship class of the Legion Navy should be reliant on well-proven technologies. On the other hand, the core fighting doctrine of the Legion Navy called for closure to close range, an approach notably well-suited for challenging jump point assaults into the teeth of the enemy, and particle beams were at the present time considered ancillary, at most, to this central doctrine. At this, Lord Admiral Criasus hurriedly thanked his comrade in arms for her valuable contribution, and recommended that the comment session proceed towards another topic.

This recommendation was taken by Lord Grand Admiral Argyron, but not in the manner which the Speaker had hoped. Following from the previous discussion, though assuredly on a separate tack, the Lord Grand Admiral inquired as to the conspicuous absence of Hellfire squadrons in the selection of attachment-only squadron types which was thus limited to Bellerophon squadrons only. Once again, Lord High Admiral Macaria responded, stating that while the Hellfire class had proven occasionally useful in combat, it was certainly not necessary and the advent of a heavy cruiser class which could confidently advance against enemy beam fire would render the Hellfire unnecessary in any case. After the Lord Grand Admiral replied indicating that she could hardly see how a 20,000-ton phallic symbol was anything but unnecessary, the Lord High Admiral offered to assist his superior officer by demonstrating the necessity of a phallic symbol, at which point the record appears to indicate that a brief period of unrest among the assembly was settled by the peacekeeping actions of the Imperial Guard detachment.

Following these peacekeeping actions, Lord Admiral Criasus called the comment session to a close and invited the next team to present their initial doctrinal proposal. Based on the roster for the next team to present, the reader can understand why this was not expected to go well:
  • Lord Grand Admiral Tethys Argyron, Fleet High Command
  • Lord Admiral Palaestra Abderus, Mining Corps
  • Lord Admiral Agamemnon Hydra, Terraforming Corps
This team in fact consisted of the Legion Navy’s foremost particle beam advocates, and thus the basis of their doctrinal proposal, though couched in weaseling terms of “mixed armaments”, surprised absolutely no members of the assembly.



While this team would likely have preferred to be known as the “Mixed Armaments Team”, in practice they quickly picked up the more controversial moniker of the “Beam Team”, along with one or two less savory names once again not fit for print. Despite vociferous opposition to the unveiling of their beam-centric doctrinal plan, the Beam Team soldiered onward, attempting to provide additional points of emphasis for the consideration of the less rabidly-opposed members of the assembly:
  • From the outset, Lord Admiral Abderus attempted to head off the harshest dissenters by indicating that, while her team strongly believed in the doctrinal concept being proposed, the controversial position of the Hellfire class in the present-day Legion Navy establishment was well known, and the proposal being presented was intended to provide an alternative viewpoint for consideration in the later discussions rather than as a thorough upending of Legion Naval tradition.
  • Lord Admiral Hydra additionally noted that the proposed battle fleet organization was not a novel contribution, as in fact First Fleet had fought at least one major engagement using the same basic configuration aside from the type of light cruiser used in the battle.
  • The bulk of the presentation duties fell to Lord Grand Admiral Argyron, herself by now no stranger to the limelight of controversy. The chief rationale behind formalizing a particle beam-based doctrine, she stated, was to ensure that a Legion battle fleet was prepared to fight any enemy at a moment’s notice, whereas the present Bellerophon-including fleet pattern retained a weakness against enemy long-ranged beam firepower. Future enemies, she pointed out, could not be presumed to have only a few beam cruisers mixed among missile-armed ships, and the capability to counter a beam-heavy enemy fleet without having to retreat towards reinforcements was critical to hold frontier systems.
  • Additionally, the Lord Grand Admiral brought attention to a proposed new class of specialized warships, the beam monitor class. These would be cruiser-sized warships mounting the heaviest particle beams the Priapus Energetics Laboratory could design, with the aim of providing heavy beam fire support on a heavily-armored hull against particularly challenging targets. In contrast to the heavy cruisers of the previous proposal, she noted, these monitors would represent an actual new capability rather than simply a bigger gun on a bigger hull.
  • Finally, noting that particle beam warships were not well-suited to a jump point assault, the Beam Team had designed the Hellfire and beam monitor squadrons without a dedicated jump vessel, as outside of a jump point assault mission these ships would be adequately transported through jump points by a Judgment Day-class jump cruiser or similar.
As the Beam Team concluded their presentation, Lord Admiral Criasus quickly raised a point of interest, hoping to lead by example and set a positive tone for the comment period. He noted that the proposed beam monitor class, aside from any other uses, would likely be of great help in assaulting a heavily-defended planet such as Belaire Prime, since it could be used to eliminate surface-based gun emplacements without closing to point-blank range and risking effective return fire.

Surprisingly, the Conference records indicate that the reaction of the assembly at large to this proposal was markedly subdued, with relatively few heated objections raised. The records also rather conspicuously note the presence of the Imperial Guard detachment in close quarters among the assembly, likely a preemptive deployment wisely ordered by the Lords General commanding the detachment. Amusingly, Lord High Admiral Macaria is recorded at having stood and prepared to deliver a particularly bombastic comment, but is only recorded as having thanked the Beam Team for their interesting proposal; it seems likely that the Lord High Admiral had noticed the positioning of the Imperial Guards and chose to revise his comment in the moment.

This is not to say that no substantial comments were made. Lord Admiral Chryson noted, perhaps with tongue in cheek, that the suggested beam monitor class would likely be expensive, time-consuming to build, logistically-demanding particularly in terms of shipyard space which would be diverted from building main-line light cruisers at the same tonnage mark, and did not seem to offer any tangible advantages over a frigate-sized hull. Lord Grand Admiral Argyron responded by pointing out that the monitor squadron would be an optional attachment used only for special mission profiles, thus would require a far lesser investment of resources than, for example, a large heavy cruiser fleet. At this juncture, Lord Admiral Criasus noted the subtext of this exchange and recommended that the points raised by both speakers be considered in the later discussions and proposals.

Perhaps the most insightful comment was received from Lord Admiral Gaia Pandia of the Logistics Corps, who first inquired as to whether this proposal, appearing to call for a four-Hellfire squadron in every battle fleet, would require a significant increase in Hellfire production. Upon receiving an affirmative answer, she pointed out that particle beam weapons required a nontrivial mass of corundium to produce, this being currently the most stressed resource stockpile for the Legion economy, and attempting to massively increase Hellfire production while also building up a beam monitor force would likely stress these stockpiles beyond the current mining capacity of the Legion. Lord Admiral Abderus, despite being an originator of the mixed armaments plan, was forced to concede this point as commander of the Mining Corps, marking a rare moment of humility amidst the chaos and controversy of the day’s debates.

On this note, Lord Admiral Criasus was glad to order the fourth and final doctrinal proposal team to present their ideas, confident that nothing could be more controversial than a Hellfire-based proposal. This confidence was unfounded.

The fourth doctrinal team consisted of:
  • Lord High Admiral Geras Makedon, Training Command
  • Lord Admiral Adrien Agamemnon, Survey Corps
  • Lord Admiral Pothos Aleus, Training Corps
  • Lord Admiral Gaia Pandia, Logistics Corps
These four proposed what would turn out to be the most drastic revision of Legion Naval doctrine yet presented. In fact, the very concept of a doctrinal fleet organization would be completely eschewed in favor of a so-called “modular fleet system”, under which a battle fleet would consist of no permanent organization except for a command squadron providing command, control, and reconnaissance capabilities, while every other squadron-level asset would be hand-selected for the specific mission at hand. It would take several minutes for the uproar among the assembly to be calmed down, fortunately only requiring the threat of Imperial Guard intervention as motivation.



With order restored, the team quickly set about offering justification and defense for their highly novel modular fleet concept:
  • The modular fleet doctrine, explained by Lord High Admiral Makedon, had two principal goals. The first of these was to reflect the way Legion Navy battle fleets had been organized and used in practice, rather than trying to prescribe a new doctrinal organization which may or may not actually be followed in practice. As in practice, Legion Navy fleets had seen their composition varied based on mission profile and ship availability, formalizing this variance in doctrine seemed a good, adaptive solution.
  • The second goal was to address the weakness of jump vessels in squadron composition. To this end, the modular fleet doctrine would collect jump-capable assets in a separate pool of ships to be assigned to a fleet as necessary to carry out a jump point assault. For normal jump transit into uncontested space, the new command cruiser class would provide standard jump transit capability for the fleet.
  • This brought up the new class, which was presented chiefly by Lord Admiral Agamemnon. The concept of the Command and Control Squadron was to serve as the permanent “core” of a battle fleet, providing not only jump capability but also long-range sensor capabilities and reconnaissance assets, which could be deployed or held in reserve depending on the mission requirements - notably, this would explicitly encode in Legion Naval doctrine the Bellerophon class as a reconnaissance asset which should not be engaged in a pitched battle, preventing the sort of losses seen in previous encounters. The command cruiser class itself was roughly sketched out as follows:
   Experimental Command Cruiser Proposal
   20,000 tons     500 crew     762 mm (6x127 mm) Composite Armor
   Hangar Deck Capacity 500 tons
   Captain, Executive Officer, Chief Engineer, Flag Officer
   2000-ton Fleet Cruiser Engine (4)     5000 km/s     Range 20 billion km
   Fleet Gravity Drive     Max Ship Size 20000 tons     Distance 50k km     Squadron Size 3
   Fleet Long-Range Array     Range 102m km     Resolution 7500 tons
   Fleet High-Resolution Array     Range 41.3m km     Resolution 500 tons
   Fleet Missile Warning Array     Range 19.1m km     Resolution 50 tons     Missile Detection Range 1,723k km
   Fleet RF Wave Array     Nominal Range 67.1m km
   Fleet Infrared Array     Nominal Range 67.1m km

  • An additional impetus for the design of a command cruiser class was to provide a platform for Lord Captains to command fleets in battle at the tactical level, in a similar manner to the proposed heavy jump cruiser class advocated by the Capital Ship Doctrine but on a considerably less incapable platform.
  • Lord Admiral Pandia briefly discussed the logistics of the proposal. On one hand, the Legion Navy’s stock of jump-capable ships would need to be upgraded to be capable of jumping four combat vessels in a squadron transit to carry out jump point assaults, although in the near term this could be handled by temporarily disrupting the squadron organization to create ad-hoc groups of three combat ships.
  • On the other hand, the modular fleet team had anticipated some pushback against the lack of organic jump-capable assets in a battle fleet. Lord Admiral Pandia noted that in practice, the Legion Navy had never - and was unlikely to have ever - conducted a jump point assault without an extended planning and preparation period, which would in practice allow ample time to redeploy jump assets as needed for these rare and special missions. As the command cruiser provided standard fleet jump capabilities, fleet mobility would in practice be unhindered in any realistic tactical situation.
  • Finally, Lord Admiral Aleus presented an additional major advantage of the modular fleet doctrine, pertaining to fleet training. Previously, Legion Navy practice had been to engage in fleet training exercises on the fleet level only, leading to disparate outcomes where come ship crews would be fully-trained while other crews on more recently-commissioned vessels would require much additional training. The modular fleet doctrine would allow training exercises to be run chiefly on the squadron level, ensuring that ship crews would have much more uniform levels of experience across the fleet while not wasting time over-training experienced crews aboard older vessels.
The fourth and final team had clearly anticipated many counterarguments to their highly novel proposal, and their presentation had been easily the longest and most rigorous of the morning session. Even so, the members of the assembly had no difficulty finding areas of commentary to explore in a stimulating discussion period.

Surprisingly, the Lords Admiral were generally approving of the command cruiser concept, in large part due to the abiding interest in placing the Lords Captain closer to the front from where it was believed they would be more effective commanders than behind a desk in Kuiper 79. Notably, Lord High Admiral Macaria noted that the command cruiser was likely a better answer to this particular question than the heavy jump cruisers his own team had proposed, not least as the optics of placing a commanding officer on a third-rate warship were problematic to say not too much on the subject. Other Lords Admiral noted that the command cruiser would neatly solve the Bellerophon problem, providing the same long-range sensor capabilities on a far more durable hull.

Less well-received was the central role afforded to the Bellerophon class itself, forming the remainder of the four-ship command squadron with ships of such a controversial class would of course not be taken well. For many of the Lords Admiral, the doctrinal role of the ships as explicitly-detachable assets in the face of pitched battle had been rather lost, notably Lord Admiral Chryson objected to including such a fragile, combat-incapable vessel as central to the otherwise modular fleet. Amidst a sea of critical voices, Lord Admiral Pandia replied by reinforcing the detachable nature of these assets, and particularly noting that the Bellerophons could be detached outside of battle, in-theater, to provide not only distant reconnaissance but also to open up opportunities for commerce raiding. By giving a practical example, the Lord Admiral did help some among the assembly to comprehend the detachable aspect of the new Bellerophon doctrine, and while the assembly remained overall divided over the role of the class the dissension was somewhat muted after this point.

As no new objections were raised regarding the inclusion of Hellfire-class frigates in the proposal, it suffices for the reader to be made aware that the same old objections were repeated and countered with renewed vigor, to the point where Lord Grand Admiral Argyron and Lord High Admiral Macaria were briefly escorted from the Conference chamber by members of the Imperial Guard detachment, albeit temporarily having not yet been formally ejected by Lord Admiral Imperator Valance.

Far more edifying discussions were held on the subject of the inorganic jump assets concept. Lord Admiral Glycon Limos argued that while a full-scale jump point assault required months of preparation, the capability to immediately execute a jump point assault against an inferior force as part of a pursuit operation should not be neglected. Several of his fellow Lords Admiral agreed, voicing the opinion that it would be illogical to remove this option from those available to a commanding officer in the midst of a battle or operation. Lord High Admiral Makedon attempted to defend against this argument, noting that jump-capable assets could certainly be forward-deployed to an active theater of operations. The assembly found this counter-argument to be quite weak, as even waiting several hours for a jump ship detachment to reach a jump point could be sufficient to render any pursuit operation infeasible. Lord Grand Admiral Thanatos Adrastus noted an additional weakness in the inorganic jump assets plan: as the jump-capable vessels would see only rare combat action, they would be seen as even less prestigious postings than they already were, likely causing discontent amongst the lower command officer ranks and morale deficiencies more broadly among the crews.

Upon her return to the chamber, however, Lord Grand Admiral Argyron had perhaps the most insightful objection yet raised to the modular fleet doctrine. On a basic level, she argued, the modular system would reduce fleet flexibility compared to any other approach which attempted to design a general-purpose battle fleet. A fleet designed for a particular mission, if confronted with a different tactical or operational situation in the field, would be less adaptable, particularly if composed of specialized ships such as Hellfires and Bellerophons, to say nothing of any exotic designs which might be added to the Legion Navy ship roster in the future. Lord Admiral Aleus attempted to make a counter-argument to this, claiming that since the core of a fleet would likely be made up of relatively flexible ships such as the Invincible and Charybdis class, concerns about a loss of flexibility were overblown. However, Lord Grand Admiral Argyron replied, if this was the case why not formalize these ships as the core of a flexible battle fleet and treat specialized ships as optional attachments - exactly what the previous three proposals attempted to do? This rhetoric gained the Lord Grand Admiral much support from the assembly, despite further efforts from the modular fleet team to justify their own approach.

----

As the final comment period of the morning session finally petered out, Lord Admiral Criasus offered a brief summary of the various proposals. While there were many disagreements, the Speaker sought to identify the common ground shared by each proposal to provide a basis for cooperative work in the afternoon session. All four proposals, he noted, had enshrined the squadron as the basis of fleet composition, affirming years of Legion Naval tradition. Furthermore, it was clear that the destroyer and light cruiser classes would continue to serve as the major basis and workhorse hull types for battle fleets for the foreseeable future. While each proposal had been distinct from every other, Lord Admiral Criasus emphasized that every proposal had given some idea which many, perhaps the majority, of the assembly had received positively, in spite of the sometimes acrimonious debates which had dominated the session. The Lord Admiral therefore urged his fellow Lords Admiral to consider these positive ideas carefully during the break to follow, before coming back to the afternoon session ready to work together to determine a cohesive doctrine for the future of the Legion Navy.

After this the Naval Conference was adjourned for a light luncheon.

----

OOC Notes: And the next update is finally published! My original plan to publish the entire session in a single chapter has perhaps rather predictably been frustrated, and rather than wait to publish the full session as a two-part update I have decided to publish this first half separately. If nothing else this provides the readership with something to read in their spare time, and any additional thoughts on the proposed doctrines may have a non-zero chance of being considered in the second part of this session. As for this offering, I do worry that perhaps I have finally gotten too wordy and self-indulgent for my own good, but we shall see what the readership thinks as thus far such wordiness has been well-received.
« Last Edit: May 27, 2021, 07:56:54 PM by nuclearslurpee »
 
The following users thanked this post: mavikfelna, Andrew, Marski, Black, El Pip, BAGrimm, Warer, Foxxonius Augustus, Albacore