Author Topic: From the Ashes - part 29  (Read 4176 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Haji (OP)

  • Moderator
  • Captain
  • *****
  • Posts: 442
  • Thanked: 53 times
From the Ashes - part 29
« on: March 23, 2017, 01:28:25 PM »
5th June 2407

   With the immediate danger over and lack of new data, the Hegemony tries to come to grips with recent events and produce recommendations for the future. The hottest issue, although one kept behind closed doors, is the performance of Vice Admiral Rosa Ladnmann. As far as the government is concerned she spent fourteen thousand and four hundred Spacebolts, thirty six hundred Tomahawks and some sixty four hundred Patriots – two and a half years worth of production at current rates - while accomplishing absolutely nothing. Worse than nothing for she has not only been evicted from Albuquerque but lost Amarillo as well.
   The Navy points out however that the forces under her command have not lost a single person, suffered only very light armour damage to five ships and destroyed well over a dozen enemy warships, including seven of their battleships, while damaging another dozen or so heavily enough they had to withdraw. The enemy was simply too powerful and had too many forces compared to humans and it was the government who decided how many forces to send.
   In the end it appears that Landmann will avoid any official penalties but it also appears the government intends to shuffle her into irrelevance.
   Much more important, and public, was the problem of what to do next. The ammunition situation was considered quite serious although even before the discovery of Kinharans the Hegemony was working on improving it. By now new factories were being built on New Earth and Khamali while the research facilities on Ares were giving priority to development of improved construction rates. Coupled with healthy stockpiles of older ammunition, which should still be equal or superior to what the aliens were fielding, the situation was manageable and should be resolved in a fairly short order.
   The next issue was the possibility of offensive operations. Here the Navy had bad news. While it could not be proven, the enemy was almost certainly going to heavily entrench himself on the other side of the jump point with warships using missiles and lasers to deal with any incoming. Just like Landmann is confident she can deal with the vastly superior enemy numbers with the depleted force she has, this will be very true for the enemy as well. In order to launch a successful invasion the Hegemony will need large number of proper jump ships and even larger number of warships.
   The Omar Bradley class jump destroyers will definitely help but what the Navy needs is larger number of cruiser sized jump ships and preferably warships designed from the very beginning for just this type of combat. As they point out current designs are generalists, which means they dedicate large amount of space to anti-missiles, which are completely useless in such a scenario and even point defences and energy weapons have questionable utility.
   The government is fully supportive of anything that can allow it to deal with the aliens, but the problem will be shipyard space. The current production is good enough to produce carriers and their supporting groups but for a heavy cost jump point assault it appears more will be needed. Expansion itself would not be a problem, as the money and resources are there, but New Earth is using almost all available manpower.
   Fortunately the planet is not the only one in the system and Ares should have workforce more than large enough to accept significant amount of the existing ordnance factories, allowing the capital to focus on naval expansion. The Navy was ordered to produce appropriate designs as soon as possible while orders were also given to start adding slipways to the existing yards.
   The next item on the agenda was the general performance of the Hegemony missile strikes, which achieved very little despite technological advantage the humans enjoyed. In general this is attributed to the simple enemy superiority in numbers, which did not help the Kinharans during the very first battle against Valiant. However some people note that fighters may not be the best tool for missiles strikes. As an example a modern Xihu class cruiser, which is one tenth the size of the Invincible carries one hundred and fifty Tomahawks. If scaled up the number would increase to fifteen hundred. Now a full strike by the newest carrier would launch two thousand Spacebolts, but the Invincible has no other function that long range strikes and fighter munitions are smaller. A three hundred thousand tonne battleship could launch as many, if not more missiles than a full bomber group, have incredibly heavy defences and enough anti-missiles, lasers and gauss cannons to make escorts irrelevant. And if repeated strikes are so important, miniaturised but repeatable launchers are a possibility.
   The carrier supporters, which include the Hegemon and most of the upper echelons of the Navy, point out however that fighters can sneak under the enemy radar, allow easy strikes at numerous locations at once and with the next generation of engines should be faster than the Destroyers allowing repeated strikes against that enemy with minimal risk. Clearly studies should be conducted to see if the fighter performance can be improved, but at the moment the carriers will remain the primary weapon of the Hegemony.

17th June 2407

   For the past days the Hegemony Navy has been trying to find a way to improve their fighters. Some point out that what happened in Albuquerque was a simple case of the vessels failing against a massively superior foe so there is nothing wrong with the doctrine or the current shipbuilding practices, but as the other officers point out it doesn't matter. The Kinhars are a foe that has to be defeated and the simple fact that it was impossible to amass large enough force for the task changes nothing.
   Even so the only way to deal with the issue appears to be increased number of missile carried by the bombers. Enlarging bays on individual carriers does not seem to be possible as while defences take a lot of space that could be better used, the two wars with the Commune has shown those defences are indeed needed. Lowering the number of strikes the carrier is capable of is also a possibility but the ability of fighters to reload and launch again is one of their most important characteristics.
   Using the existing X-236B Eagle as a baseline the Navy quickly developed a new bomber, the X-244 Harrier equipped with fifteen of the new Maverick missiles. Those are two thirds the size of Spacebolts – or half the size of Tomahawks – with seventy percent as good a warhead, the same speed as other munitions to allow for unified strikes and rather limited, but high resolution active sensor. Adopting those would increase the throw weight of the carriers by fifty percent without any changes to the capital ships themselves and the performance is so good nothing will be lost.
   The only issue is not performance based but logistics based. Replacing the Eagles is simply not an option as it would take too much time so for the foreseeable future the two types of bombers would have to operate together, which means two types of ammunition would be produced. This can easily lead to a situation where one will be used too much and the other too little leading to unnecessary shortages. Unfortunately no one sees any way to deal with it and the significant increase in throw weight gives the ship many supporters within the Navy. While there is still time before the Invincible gets its full group and a new one is constructed, most expect that no matter how long the debate will take, the new fighters and their ammunition will be adopted for Incredible and the following carriers.

Code: [Select]
X-244 Harrier class Bomber    500 tons     11 Crew     244 BP      TCS 10  TH 192  EM 0
19200 km/s     Armour 1-5     Shields 0-0     Sensors 1/1/0/0     Damage Control Rating 0     PPV 4.5
Maint Life 5.87 Years     MSP 30    AFR 20%    IFR 0.3%    1YR 1    5YR 22    Max Repair 48 MSP
Intended Deployment Time: 1 months    Spare Berths 4   
Magazine 30   

Burford-Zaffino Fighter Inertial Fusion Drive (2)    Power 96    Fuel Use 617.3%    Signature 96    Exp 30%
Fuel Capacity 65 000 Litres    Range 3.8 billion km   (54 hours at full power)

Chakladar Corporation Small Bomber Bay (15)    Missile Size 2    Hangar Reload 15 minutes    MF Reload 2.5 hours
Zou Manufacturing Bomber Fire Control (1)     Range 120.5m km    Resolution 60
Maverick (15)  Speed: 88 000 km/s   End: 17.4m    Range: 91.9m km   WH: 7    Size: 2    TH: 293/176/88

Compact ECCM-3 (1)         Missile to hit chances are vs targets moving at 3000 km/s, 5000 km/s and 10,000 km/s

This design is classed as a Fighter for production, combat and maintenance purposes

Code: [Select]
Missile Size: 2 MSP  (0.1 HS)     Warhead: 7    Armour: 0     Manoeuvre Rating: 10
Speed: 88000 km/s    Engine Endurance: 17 minutes   Range: 91.9m km
Active Sensor Strength: 0.12   Sensitivity Modifier: 240%
Resolution: 20    Maximum Range vs 1000 ton object (or larger): 120 000 km
Cost Per Missile: 4.142
Chance to Hit: 1k km/s 880%   3k km/s 290%   5k km/s 176%   10k km/s 88%
Materials Required:    1.75x Tritanium   0.072x Boronide   0.12x Uridium   2.2x Gallicite   Fuel x815

30th June 2407

   The Hegemony designs two new ships which will hopefully allow them to successfully assault the Kinharan systems, the X-245 Ceasar class assault destroyer and the X-246 Lindos class jump cruiser.
   The X-245 was conceived as a pure offensive platform. It is supposed to jump into a system, survive long enough to unleash its missiles and if it survived to help deal with the remaining enemies by using lasers. As the function was very basic and focused, the design process was simply, but nonetheless there were three important decisions to be made.
   The first was the amount of armour the ship was to carry. Obviously the more the better, but that would cut into armament. In addition even if squadron jumps were to be used it was impossible to know where exactly the ship will emerge, so the enemy may be able to fire first. If that was the case and if the enemy was equipped with missiles – as the Kinharans are – than to a certain extent it would not really matter how good the passive defences were. In the end the armour was two thirds again as thick as that of the newest cruisers.
   The second important decision was the inclusion of lasers. The problem with energy weapons was that they can be very destructive but they need time to actually do any worthwhile damage. As jump point assault was expected to be bloody and solved by missiles, many wanted to do without energy weapons. However the Navy simply did not have any experience with the type of battle it expected to fight against the Kinharans, as even the assault on Untama was against an inferior enemy, both in numbers and technology, and one which appeared to not use box launchers. As such some ships on both sides may very well survive the assault which will require the use of energy weapons.
   Last but not least was the type of missiles to be used. The Navy wanted to develop a new, short range munition, but the government overruled it on the basis that there were already five different missile types in service and adding more will complicate logistics at a time where modern ammunition is at premium.
   In the end the designers decided to use the largest ammunition they had, Tomahawks, on the basis that those were the most destructive ones.

Code: [Select]
X-245 Ceasar class Assault Destroyer    20 000 tons     403 Crew     6190.5 BP      TCS 400  TH 3200  EM 0
8000 km/s     Armour 20-65     Shields 0-0     Sensors 700/36/0/0     Damage Control Rating 14     PPV 117
Maint Life 2.3 Years     MSP 2708    AFR 228%    IFR 3.2%    1YR 695    5YR 10430    Max Repair 800 MSP
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Spare Berths 1   
Magazine 600   

Marlin -Kibaki Naval Inertial Fusion Drive (2)    Power 1600    Fuel Use 20%    Signature 1600    Exp 10%
Fuel Capacity 1 400 000 Litres    Range 63.0 billion km   (91 days at full power)

Gothe Systems 300mm Spinal Mounted Far UV Laser (1)    Range 384 000km     TS: 10000 km/s     Power 24-6     RM 5    ROF 20        24 24 24 24 24 20 17 15 13 12
Robben Weapon Systems 200mm Ultraviolet Laser (3)    Range 384 000km     TS: 10000 km/s     Power 10-6     RM 5    ROF 10        10 10 10 10 10 8 7 6 5 5
Pak-Lacourse Long Range Beam Fire Control (1)    Max Range: 384 000 km   TS: 10000 km/s     97 95 92 90 87 84 82 79 77 74
Roth-Goldwasser Advanced Fusion Power Plant (2)     Total Power Output 24    Armour 0    Exp 5%

Eshleman-Burrell Design Bureau Box Launcher (150)    Missile Size 4    Hangar Reload 30 minutes    MF Reload 5 hours
Lee-Liang Missile Fire Control (5)     Range 231.8m km    Resolution 80
Tomahawk E (150)  Speed: 88 000 km/s   End: 13.5m    Range: 71.3m km   WH: 18    Size: 4    TH: 293/176/88

Lee-Liang Small Active Search Sensor (1)     GPS 11520     Range 231.8m km    Resolution 80
Lichtenberg-Lambeth Huge Thermal Sensor  (1)     Sensitivity 700     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  700m km
Chen Manufacturing EM Detection Sensor (1)     Sensitivity 36     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  36m km

Compact ECCM-3 (5)         Missile to hit chances are vs targets moving at 3000 km/s, 5000 km/s and 10,000 km/s

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes

   Compared to X-245 the design of the X-246 Lindos was a fairly straightforward proposition. The need to include large and very powerful jump engine as well as fleet sized sensors has eaten significantly into available space,  leaving very little wiggle room, which was used to mount only a couple of CIWS and the heaviest armour in the Hegemony. The Lindos is a jump leader and a command ship in equal measure, which will allow it to full fill the same role as the old Normandy class command cruisers but better in every way.

Code: [Select]
X-246 Lindos class Jump Cruiser    30 000 tons     754 Crew     9730 BP      TCS 600  TH 4800  EM 0
8000 km/s    JR 8-1500     Armour 30-86     Shields 0-0     Sensors 700/900/0/0     Damage Control Rating 27     PPV 0
Maint Life 2.01 Years     MSP 5473    AFR 266%    IFR 3.7%    1YR 1807    5YR 27105    Max Repair 942 MSP
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Spare Berths 1   

Wei-Jin Cruiser Rated Jump Drive     Max Ship Size 30000 tons    Distance 1500k km     Squadron Size 8
Marlin -Kibaki Naval Inertial Fusion Drive (3)    Power 1600    Fuel Use 20%    Signature 1600    Exp 10%
Fuel Capacity 2 250 000 Litres    Range 67.5 billion km   (97 days at full power)

Phalanx CIWS Mk3 (2x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 40000 km/s     ROF 5       Base 50% To Hit
Zhu-Cheng Systems Long Range Active Search Sensor (1)     GPS 57600     Range 1 159.2m km    Resolution 80
Zou Manufacturing Long Range Missile Detection System (1)     GPS 576     Range 103.7m km    MCR 11.3m km    Resolution 1
Lichtenberg-Lambeth Huge Thermal Sensor  (1)     Sensitivity 700     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  700m km
Lichtenberg-Lambeth Huge EM Detection Sensor (1)     Sensitivity 900     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  900m km

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes

9th July 2407

   The Defiant and Unyielding have arrived at the jump point to Amarillo. With the Resolute only eighteen days away and considering lack of missiles for her escorts, Landmann orders Valiant, Vanguard and Vengeance home. She would love to transfer her flag to one of the other carriers but she was specifically recalled home for another assignment.

8th August 2407

   While looking into additional options of dealing with heavy jump point defences, the Hegemony begun looking into using fighters. During the assault on Untama those were used as well, using them in a mass transit through the jump point. However as was seen during the battle it takes so much time for the electronic systems to recover from the transit, that the battle was over before they could fire. As such the only way to make fighters useful would be for them to transit in a squadron formation. Unfortunately as the best Hegemony drives could transport only eight ships at once and a single carrier could have as many as two hundred bombers, the number of fighter sized jump leaders necessary would be significant.
   However as some pointed out there was a simple way to deal with it in the form of the carrier itself performing a squadron jump. The idea seemed ridiculous at first, as it would require a large jump drive and the ships themselves were supposed to stay away from enemy fire. However the naval designers begun looking at options and presented what they believed to be an interesting possibility in the form of X-247.
   The so far unnamed 'assault carrier' is the same size as the Invincible but carries only half as many craft and can perform two strikes rather than three. However it has its own jump drive, has the heaviest armour in space, over three time as thick as that of the new generation cruisers and has enough CIWS stations to intercept up to five hundred missiles. Better yet CIWS appear to work despite transit effects, allowing them to protect the ship even if an unlucky jumps puts it close to enemy formations.
   The vessel could be made even more effective of course. If the research facilities on Ares could be ordered to give priority to development of more efficient jump engines, the proposed thirty two thousand tonne device could be made smaller. In addition as jump point assaults are very specific situations, the carrier was given some magazine space to allow it to perform multiple strikes, but that could be sacrificed to increase the deck space. Last but not least full fleet level sensor suite was added, something that could also be replaced with smaller, but still adequate devices.
   The idea is liked in principle but most people admit that one hundred fighters is not large enough amount considering the sheer cost of the ship. Even so the government does order Ares to develop more efficient jump engines, after which the Navy will produce a modified, more assault oriented version to see what can be achieved. Unfortunately even when given high priority the research is still expected to take over two years.

Code: [Select]
X-247 class Assault Carrier    300 000 tons     7390 Crew     92190.5 BP      TCS 6000  TH 48000  EM 0
8000 km/s    JR 3-1500     Armour 40-399     Shields 0-0     Sensors 700/900/0/0     Damage Control Rating 611     PPV 0
Maint Life 1.75 Years     MSP 117350    AFR 1178%    IFR 16.4%    1YR 47006    5YR 705094    Max Repair 28919 MSP
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Flight Crew Berths 0   
Hangar Deck Capacity 50000 tons     Magazine 3000   

Proposed Carrier Jump Drive     Max Ship Size 300000 tons    Distance 1500k km     Squadron Size 3
Marlin -Kibaki Naval Inertial Fusion Drive (30)    Power 1600    Fuel Use 20%    Signature 1600    Exp 10%
Fuel Capacity 26 250 000 Litres    Range 78.8 billion km   (113 days at full power)

Phalanx CIWS Mk3 (50x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 40000 km/s     ROF 5       Base 50% To Hit
Maverick (1500)  Speed: 88 000 km/s   End: 17.4m    Range: 91.9m km   WH: 7    Size: 2    TH: 293/176/88

Angre International Battle Management System Mk3 (1)     GPS 24000     Range 1 366.1m km    Resolution 10
Lichtenberg-Lambeth Huge Thermal Sensor  (1)     Sensitivity 700     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  700m km
Lichtenberg-Lambeth Huge EM Detection Sensor (1)     Sensitivity 900     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  900m km

Strike Group
100x X-244 Harrier Bomber   Speed: 19200 km/s    Size: 10

Missile to hit chances are vs targets moving at 3000 km/s, 5000 km/s and 10,000 km/s

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes

1st September 2407

   The two Takaran colonies, founded mostly as a public relations stunt to impress the Kinharans, are now firmly established with over six million colonists on each. While the systems will retain their original Hegemony names of Cleveland and Memphis, the planets will be officially renamed to how the aliens call them – Derratta and Injiya.

10th September 2407

   Valiant, Vanguard, Vengeance and their groups are back on New Earth and given a full overhaul. As all shipyards are currently busy the light armour damage on the cruisers will remain unrepaired for the time being.
   The government kept the return of the ships a low key, as despite performing well tactically, destroying numerous enemies without a loss of a single spacer, they ultimately failed in their task creating a significant rift in the public opinion. 

9th November 2407

   As it appears the aliens are staying on the defensive, just like humans, the Hegemony is reconsidering the placement of their naval base in Pensacola. As for now the front line is a jump away in the Rochester system, some propose moving the base there. The Navy admits that from economical point of view this will be an improvement as it will be a little closer, saving a small but not inconsiderate amount of fuel. At the same time they point out that if the jump defence fails any base located in that system will be certainly lost as well. By putting it behind yet another jump point, and considering the Hegemony has speed advantage, having a base in Pensacola is a better option. In fact many officers would prefer to move the naval facilities one jump further down the chain, to Great Falls to gain even more strategic depth.
   The Hegemon, who was present at the meeting, wonders aloud why the Navy is so defensive minded that they consider only what happens to those bases if they lose another battle. Most officers fell silent but Landmann pointed out that if the Hegemony goes on a successful offensive than thanks to their future space stations they will be able to move their base of operations deeper into enemy territory with ease and it appears the Kinharans were already establishing a very well positioned base – from the human point of view - in the Albuquerque system. That explanation appears to be sufficient for the Hegemon and the meeting continues as planned.
   In the end the decision is to leave the facilities in Keningston. While so far not much have been invested in the colony, creating a new one would still require several additional months and there are already enormous demands on the national shipping. More importantly however Pensacola appears to be the best compromise between the competing positions, although whether that is a weakness or strength remains to be seen.

24th November 2407

   The Valiant, Vanguard and Vengeance carrier groups have completed their overhaul. All will now begin training to bring them to the highest possible standards.

9th January 2408

   The Invincible finally receives her Eagle type fighters, which means all Hegemony carrier groups comprise warships and bombers with the newest engines. While the group is ordered into deep space for training exercises, construction of the new Harriers begins for the already laid down Incredible, which not only is the very newest design but will also be escorted by the newest and most powerful warships designed less than two years ago.
   The problem however will be with the next carrier. The production of colliers and jump destroyers would have been annoying enough, interrupting construction of new Kanes, but the need to produce new jump cruisers means only frigates will be built in any reasonable numbers in the near future. Many in the government see no issue with this as the frigates are a pure escort design perfectly complimenting the long range strike capabilities of the carriers, but as the Navy points out the versatility of the larger escorts is a very important asset for the groups, providing additional defences, which were invaluable against the Kinharans, additional strike capability which was the only reason any damage was done during the battles in ES – 09 and Albuquerque and while not perfect for the role can perform jump point assault as they did during the war with the Kingdom.
   Nonetheless while production of the next carrier may be delayed as many are needed as possible which means it may be necessary to create a carrier group comprising only an Invincible and Athen classes. While definitely suboptimal most people agree this is better than nothing.

15th January 2408

   Two cruiser division, comprising Krakens II, which are among the most modern warships in the Commune, have arrived in ES – 230 GH12, supported by four flotillas of Stingrays. While still relatively small, the force is officially designated as the Eight Fleet and the government has already given priority to development of a proper naval base in the system. A jump gate to the star has already been built and now a construction ship enters the system to build a matching device on this side. While no freighters are currently available, as soon as any group finishes its task, the development will commence.  The system is renamed Dunkirk and the planet is named Trots which means 'defiance' in Swedish. The planet is also home to ancient ruins, which could provide significant boost to the colony but due to the lack of jump gate the available construction brigades have been sent elsewhere and won't be available for several years due to the wealth of installations at their current location.
   So far there has been no sighting of the Travellers. In fact the anomaly hasn't even moved since the discovery.

10th April 2408

   The Commune government receives news that one of their geological survey ships have been destroyed in the system of ES – 201 FGH12. The information came from a jump gate construction ship which entered the system four months ago and was unable to communicate due to lack of proper engines. It just completed its work allowing it to send the report.
   The system is located in the same area of space as Dunkirk where a known Traveller anomaly is located, but the systems are six jumps apart so it seems unlikely that is the source. The ADS may be responsible, but the system has been surveyed by the Sirius class ships which are easy to detect due to their size, have very good passive sensors and very high speed. If the aliens were present in the system, they would have been found, which means they are almost certainly new arrivals.
   Worse the system is the first in a dead end chain of three stars, all of which has been fully surveyed gravitationally and had their most promising candidates for settlement scouted as well. As such it is either work of known aliens like ADS or Spectres who just happened to have a base of operations in deep space in this case, a new Traveller anomaly has opened or a new hostile alien race have found a dormant jump point.
   To make matters worse due to enormous pressures on the Commune industry production of new tracking stations have been lagging. All inhabited systems, the Tartarus chain and every approach to long colonised areas is monitored but many known systems are left alone and some of the new, more distant colonies don't have such cover. All of which means the theoretical aliens may have already spread to other systems in the area.
   As the systems are outside the established sectors, they don't fall into purview of any naval formation. The closest force is of course the Eight Fleet, but it's busy watching a known Traveller anomaly especially since there is a jump gate construction ship in the system which cannot withdraw and the first load of infrastructure is on its way to Trots. The second closest formation is the Fourth Fleet but the frigates and gunboats are not a good choice for such a job and the two cruiser formations assigned to the fleet comprise the older Eletha class, which means the divisions have only six warships rather than eight and while their missiles are modern, their energy weapons are quite old.
   After some consideration the Seventh Cruiser Division is ordered to investigate. It was just leaving Gardatis after the refits and while those included only the engines, it still comprises seven modern Harpy class ships plus a jump cruiser. Unfortunately due to distances it will quite some time for the formation to arrive at the scene and fuel may be an issue as well.

26th April 2408

   The Incredible has been launched although it will take several months for the fighters to be constructed and all the escorts assembled. While the Hegemony is still worried about the availability of smaller ships, they lay down the next carrier. If there is a shortage then the next one will be delayed.

25th May 2408

   The Commune Seventh Cruiser Division has arrived in the ES – 201 system. However as it is a binary and the survey ships was destroyed close to the secondary component, neither the passive nor the active sensors detect anything. The ships refuel from a tanker that was accompanying them and set course of the wreck of the survey ship, which is over fifteen billion kilometres away, close to the secondary component of the system.

4th June 2408

   The Commune wreck is now within sensor range, which means anything above the size of a gunboat would be detected if it was there. The ships will now continue towards the secondary component which has its own planetary system including several candidates for colonisation.

9th June 2408

   The Commune detects two Traveller cruisers holding position above the fifth moon of the second planet, a Neptune sized gas giant. The object is one of the candidates for settlement but otherwise has nothing to make it stand out. As the various sensor officers comb the system to confirm there is no anomaly present, Commodore Anna Norberg orders her ships to intercept.

10th June 2408

   The humans closed to a hundred million kilometres of their opponents without any incident indicating those particular ships were likely armed with short range weapons only. As Norbergs cruisers were equipped with Satyrs, which had rather light warheads but good chances of getting through active defences, she decided to assign one of her ships to each of the enemy ones, ordering Adze and Nue to fire all their missiles, two hundred and forty in total.
   Two hundred and thirty three managed to get through, but the light, four megaton warheads failed to impress the aliens. Norberg could go for an energy weapon duel, but her ships had shorter ranges then the enemy and the very low number of intercepted missiles would argue the aliens had large number of laser batteries. Instead she ordered Ala and Fenghuang to fire their ordnance.
   The second strike managed to hole the enemy armour in several places and slightly slow one of the cruisers but that was it. Ariel and Pegasus were the next to fire which finally caused enough damage to start secondary explosions but the aliens still stood. Raiju, the last cruiser in the division, split her fire between the two enemies, killing one of the aliens.
   Unwilling to let the last enemy repair or report, she ordered her ships into anti-missile range. She ordered five full salvoes – almost five hundred interceptors – in the first wave hoping it will be enough. I turned out to be a massive overkill.
   As there was no anomaly in the system the aliens likely arrived from somewhere else, but Norberg was unwilling to push forward without ammunition. Instead she headed towards Phoenicia, where the nearest naval base was located while also sending a very politely worded document expressing her disappointment with the performance of the Satyrs.

12th June 2408

   The news of the engagement reach the Commune government, causing considerable worry. It is possible those particular ships travelled from the anomaly in Dunkirk but as the two systems are six jumps away it seems unlikely. If another anomaly is found, as is expected at the moment, it will put the Force in a difficult position, for it is somewhat off balance. Numerous formations are moving between systems for refits or are already in yards and while the actual combat formations are kept at constant strength by immediately replacing any recalled warships, Home Fleet and some others have been weakened. To put it simply even establishing the Eight Fleet is problematic and creating another formation will be even more so.
   For similar reasons the Seventh Cruiser Division will be left to continue investigation, although the fact that it would take similarly long to send a new formation to the scene has also played a part.
   The biggest issue was the performance of Satyrs which despite being the very newest munition were needed in what some described as 'ridiculous numbers' to deal with the aliens. The Force explains, to those who weren't government members at the time of the design, that Satyrs were a response to the very high interception chances of modern anti-missiles. The focus on bypassing enemy defences, which clearly worked, left little room for a warhead, which is why it had only four megaton one, equal to the much smaller Jevelins or the small and old Arrows II which dealt with the Destroyer over thirty years ago. They also explain that the ammunition of this particular size is being phased out exactly because it is uneconomical to use. Unfortunately the Harpy class cruisers which are the most common cruiser design in use, were designed for just such weapon. For the time being however there is little that can be done about it.

18th July 2408

   The Seventh Cruiser Division arrives on Falsterbo to re-arm. However the planet has only limited amount of ammunition so she can't get enough Warhammers , a short range munitions with the most powerful warheads in the nation. Instead she gets good old fashioned Trebuchets V, slower and less capable of getting through point defence, but possessing ten megaton warheads.

12th August 2408

   The Seventh Cruiser Division is back in the ES – 201 system. While it is possible the aliens have once again entered it and set course for the secondary component, checking it would be lengthy, costly and most importantly pointless as the Travellers seemed unable to detect the Commune force until they closed to around a billion and a half kilometres. As such Norberg ordered her ships towards the jump point to the next system in chain, ES – 231 GKH13.
   Most of the planets and asteroid belt orbiting the primary is either already in the sensor range or will be during the trek.

16th August 2408

   The Commune warships enter ES – 231 without incident and without detecting any anomalies. They will check the system before moving to the last one in the chain, ES – 238 GH14.

21st August 2408

   Once again the Seventh Cruiser Division jumps into a new system expecting battle and once again they find nothing. Before heading back towards the Commune space they will perform a flyby of the planets.

6th September 2408

   The Commune government receives report from the Seventh Cruiser Division causing no end of confusion. The ships are ordered to check adjacent systems to ensure there are no Traveller anomalies.

22nd September 2408

   The Seventh Cruiser Division has completed its flyby of the nearby system finding no sign of the Travellers. The current opinion is that the two ships came either from the anomaly in Dunkirk or one that was so short lived the humans haven't had an opportunity to notice it.
   The formation will be recalled to Wieczlika as it was originally part of the Second Fleet.

4th October 2408

   The Traveller anomaly in the Thermopylae system has disappeared and so far no news have arrived of a new one. This is a very fortunate turn of events for the Commune as it will allow them to disband the Seventh Fleet, using its ships to reinforce other formations.
   The Seventh and Eight Battlecruiser Divisions will be sent to Rampart where the Sixth Fleet keeps an aye on another anomaly. The Third Cruiser Division and the Fifth Destroyer Squadron will be added to the Second Fleet responsible for the Sudetes sector and while the government normally does not interfere with internal fleet deployments, they strongly suggest the Fifth be deployed to Eden to reassure the ever growing colony.
   The Twelfth Cruiser Division, the Third and Ninth Destroyer Squadrons and the Twelfth Frigate Squadron will be sent to Knossos to reinforce the Third Fleet. While the Third is a very powerful formation, it comprises mostly gunboats to defend against the Destroyer and the Hegemony. In fact it is the only fleet without enough major ships to provide any form of responsive, nodal defence but as the Knossos Sector had rather few planets and was close enough to be supported by the Second Fleet, many felt the situation was manageable. Even so with new colonies recently established in the area many feel the time has come to to give the formation a proper mobile element.
   The Fifth Frigate Squadron as well as the Eleventh, Thirteenth and Twenty First Gunboat Flotillas will reinforce the Fifth Fleet, the smallest formation currently in existence, responsible for the Ayutthaya sector. The Fourteenth, Thirtieth and Thrifty Second Gunboat Flotillas will be send back to Baltic to reinforce the Home Fleet.

19th November 2408

   The Incredible carrier group is finally activated. However instead of sending it to train, the Hegemony decides to keep it in orbit. At the moment four carriers are on the front and four more are undergoing training which means very soon a total of eight carriers will begin to experience serious maintenance issues. While not all of them will be put into overhaul at the same time, it may nonetheless serious limit Navy's ability to deploy its forces. As such Incredible will be one of the carriers which will soon be sent to Rochester to picket the jump point into Confederate space.

6th February 2409

   The Commune government decides to send a cruiser division to picket the Aurora system, which is inhabited by pre-TN industrial race and as such quarantined. While the humans have no intention of communicating with the natives and intend to try and stay covert, there is nonetheless fear enemies, like the Travellers, may use this system to attack the Commune without anyone knowing. Those worries existed for years but the recent new sightings of the Travellers in previously safe systems have given enough power to those worries to warrant the risk of being discovered.

26th April 2409

   Indomitable, the third Invincible class carrier has been launched, but as expected it will have to wait quite a long time for escorts. Twelve frigates are almost complete but additional cruisers won't be laid down until December and production of destroyers is on hold until unknown date, as the shipyards will be building assault vessels. Moreover development of more efficient jump drive won't be complete until August but even after that is done the device itself will have to be designed. Because of this the government begins to consider building the proposed X – 247 class assault carriers without any improvements, but admirals Landmann and Jagtap, who has been trying to find a way to return to Albuquerque ever since their forces had to retreat, propose an alternative.
   As they point out attack on a well defended jump point will always end in loses. What is important is to jump in such a strength that enough will remain to win. The proposed assault carrier is certainly impressive, but they ask a very simple question – what if it is ignored with the aliens concentrating on smaller vessels? And the answer is simple – all that armour and point defence will be useless and the ship will be able to launch only a hundred fighters capable of launching only fifteen hundred missiles. Considering how many enemies will likely await on the other side, that is simply not enough.
   Using existing carriers for such an assault may seem like suicide, but the two admirals present their numbers. The Invincible class has armour as thick as the new generation destroyers and only a little thinner than the Xihe class cruisers, but hey also have a lot of bulk. Wiping out that armour would take hundreds of hits, killing the vessel hundreds more and there are enough CIWS stations to intercept two hundred shipkillers in each wave. In the end, should the carriers be used, the aliens will either have to use the bulk of their ammunition to kill them, leaving smaller vessels mostly untouched, or the Kinharans will ignore them allowing them to launch their fighters.
   As they also point out the Invincibles could be modified to better survive jump point assault. The carriers have forty anti-missile launchers with associated magazines, which would be mostly useless so they can be removed and replaced with even thicker armour and more CIWS stations. Their proposed D model has eighty percent thicker armour, almost as thick as that of the Ceasar class assault destroyer, without compromising its ability to carry and support fighters. Modification should be quite rapid and once finished the yard could be used to create a jump battleship to lead them on the assaults.
   The government is quite interested as they were worried about creating carriers incapable of operating in deep space, although there is still a lot of trepidation about using Invincibles. In the end however their impatience with the current, static situation made them agree with the recommendation as it seems to be the quickest way to resume offensive operations.

Code: [Select]
X-235D Invincible class Carrier    300 000 tons     5055 Crew     56591 BP      TCS 6000  TH 48000  EM 0
8000 km/s     Armour 18-399     Shields 0-0     Sensors 700/900/0/0     Damage Control Rating 256     PPV 0
Maint Life 1.42 Years     MSP 29003    AFR 2926%    IFR 40.6%    1YR 15766    5YR 236494    Max Repair 2400 MSP
Intended Deployment Time: 12 months    Flight Crew Berths 0   
Hangar Deck Capacity 100000 tons     Magazine 12000    Cryogenic Berths 3000   

Marlin -Kibaki Naval Inertial Fusion Drive (30)    Power 1600    Fuel Use 20%    Signature 1600    Exp 10%
Fuel Capacity 33 200 000 Litres    Range 99.6 billion km   (144 days at full power)

Phalanx CIWS Mk3 (20x10)    Range 1000 km     TS: 40000 km/s     ROF 5       Base 50% To Hit
Maverick (6000)  Speed: 88 000 km/s   End: 17.4m    Range: 91.9m km   WH: 7    Size: 2    TH: 293/176/88

Angre International Battle Management System Mk3 (1)     GPS 24000     Range 1 366.1m km    Resolution 10
Zou Manufacturing Long Range Missile Detection System (1)     GPS 576     Range 103.7m km    MCR 11.3m km    Resolution 1
Lichtenberg-Lambeth Huge Thermal Sensor  (1)     Sensitivity 700     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  700m km
Lichtenberg-Lambeth Huge EM Detection Sensor (1)     Sensitivity 900     Detect Sig Strength 1000:  900m km

Strike Group
200x X-244 Harrier Bomber   Speed: 19200 km/s    Size: 10

Missile to hit chances are vs targets moving at 3000 km/s, 5000 km/s and 10,000 km/s

This design is classed as a Military Vessel for maintenance purposes
 
The following users thanked this post: SgtVennamo, QuakeIV

Offline Michael Sandy

  • Commodore
  • **********
  • M
  • Posts: 771
  • Thanked: 83 times
Re: From the Ashes - part 29
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2017, 08:04:41 PM »
I wonder if the changeover to CIWS will come back to bite the Hegemony in deep space battles, as they can't support their fellows.

It remains to be seen if they will be able to transit with enough killing power to destroy the enemy fleet.  As a player controlled NPC, will the Kinharans be able to exploit salvage and learn Hegemony tech if they manage to decisively win a fight?

I have a suspicion that the Hegemony will win, at great expense of ordnance and shipyard time and fuel, and will lose ships in the assault, but there is also the issue of a poison pill defense, where the Hegemony will be unable to conquer the Kinharans without so irradiating their world that there is no loot.  A result that might make future diplomacy endeavors even more difficult.
 

Offline Haji (OP)

  • Moderator
  • Captain
  • *****
  • Posts: 442
  • Thanked: 53 times
Re: From the Ashes - part 29
« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2017, 08:14:44 PM »
The Hegemony isn't really switching to CIWS, they merely install them on their carriers as those are large enough to be able to afford to carry them in quite large numbers and are the most valuable part of the group, both in terms of fighting potential (assuming they still have missiles) and in the economic cost associated with them. Also their inability to protect other vessels is precisely the reason why the D model has no additional CIWS with all the freed space going into armour.
The Kinharans will of course be able to salvage wrecks and disassemble components, assuming they will be able to get their hands on some. Interrogations may also yield useful information.
As for the ground forces I don't talk about them much (if I talked about all the potentially interesting things the entire AAR would be twice as long) but after the debacle in the Untama system the Hegemony has been aggressively expanding their army, helped by the rather ridiculous number of training facilities they got from their enemy. By now they have some six or seven assault divisions and over a dozen mobile infantry divisions. In short it is very unlikely they will be forced to irradiate planets and as their goal is to unify sentinets against larger threats, they would really prefer to avoid killing potential workers.
 

Offline Michael Sandy

  • Commodore
  • **********
  • M
  • Posts: 771
  • Thanked: 83 times
Re: From the Ashes - part 29
« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2017, 08:30:48 PM »
I am guessing they will need some time to TRANSPORT all of their army, in multiple waves.  Possibly needing a forward staging ground.  But as they push the Kinharan back, they can move their army forward.

I have mixed feelings about this.  Story wise, the Hegemony is bad guys to me, so I want bad stuff to happen to them, but on the other hand, I want the Commune to have an interesting challenge.

However, I think the Commune has taken completely the wrong tact with the nonTN race.  Their noninterference means that race is dead meat if any of the known interstellar hazards come across them.  They could have been uplifting them, and turning them into an ally that could defend itself and trade with the Commune.

It has been something that has been bugging me since Star Trek the original series, to be honest.
 

Offline Gyrfalcon

  • Bug Moderators
  • Commander
  • ***
  • G
  • Posts: 331
  • Thanked: 199 times
Re: From the Ashes - part 29
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2017, 04:31:04 AM »
The problem is that Aurora doesn't have any mechanic for uplifting a pre-TN species in a peaceful fashion - the only way to do so is to go in with your army, kill their soldiers and forcibly occupy their planet.

I'm thinking that once the Hegemony is finished digesting this species as well, they'll be in the position to swarm under the Commune simply from the sheer production and resources coming in from three homeworld systems.
 

Offline Haji (OP)

  • Moderator
  • Captain
  • *****
  • Posts: 442
  • Thanked: 53 times
Re: From the Ashes - part 29
« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2017, 12:35:42 PM »
However, I think the Commune has taken completely the wrong tact with the nonTN race.  Their noninterference means that race is dead meat if any of the known interstellar hazards come across them.  They could have been uplifting them, and turning them into an ally that could defend itself and trade with the Commune.

As Gyrfalcon pointed out the Aurora provides unfortunately rather limited options to deal with pre-TN NPRs. Having said that there were ways for me to deal with the issue and since this is supposed to be a role-playing session something better than "it's limited by the game" should be expected. So I admit, I dropped the ball on this one and should have considered it more carefully.

As such below is a full and totally not asspulled explanation of why the Commune is not uplifting those aliens.

Basically the Commune are cowards.

You are right that additional ally and a trading partner would be a fantastic help for the Commune and in the short term the aliens will be certainly that - they will have no choice. However what if in the medium to long term they become enemies? Please remember that Aurora was discovered quite some time ago and at the time they likely had population as great as the entire Commune combined and even though the aliens would likely be always behind, the fact remains the Force was, and continues to be, spread very thin. Adding new threat would be very unwelcome, even if this merely meant it had to be watched, rather than fought.

What makes the Commune especially worried is the territorial situation. By the time Aurora was discovered the system of Emesh (3 jumps away) has been inhabited for over three years and it was a dead end system connecting only to Ayutthaya (2 jumps from the aliens). By now the system of Behemoth has population of over two hundred million people, is site of one of the largest naval yards in the Commune and is adjacent to the alien home system, which may cause some friction. And of course let's not forget their history with other aliens. First they met the Destroyers who were genocidal maniacs, then they met the ADS who were unthinking automated genocidal maniacs, then they met the Spectres who were unthinking animals and genocidal maniacs, then they met the Hegemony with whom they could communicate but were... oh wait, those were humans, never mind. And of course after that they met the Travellers who were genocidal manics, while the Hegemony met the Kingdom who had a maniacal ruler (even if the race seems fairly sane) and last but not least they met the Kinharans who seemed the most reasonable of them all but somehow ended up at war with humans anyway.

Not the greatest record I would say.

In fact so far the only nation who is reasonable the Commune met was the Republic and maybe the Kinharans the Kinharans are reasonable and if they met either the Commune or the Republic there would be peace.

The second thing the Commune is afraid of is cementing inequality. As they cannot study the history of either the Takarans or the Kinharans, they have only human knowledge to fall on and there was a clear correlation between technological level and social 'level' for lack of a better word. Now correlation does not equal causation, but with such a limited data what can you do?

Anyway, imagine for example, very early United States of America, the land of greatest freedom on Earth - if you were white and male. As time passed and the technology progressed slavery was outlawed (an issue which led to a civil war) women were given voting rights and generally people were becoming more equal with time, a process which by the way is still not fully complete. So now that we have that image, the question is - if such an early America were to suddenly get high technology would the civil changes still happen? Or would the technology be used to cement the social structure?

Even if you look at other nations as late as early twentieth century, there may have been a lot of equality and freedom on paper, but certain form of slavery, like debt bondage, were rampart, workers were frequently abused and safety regulations were essentially non-existent. Worse the social changes didn't happen because people changed - they happened because the old died making way for the young, more open-minded people. But with better technology comes better medicine and perhaps even genetic engineering to extend life, which means that even if social changes will still happen, they will happen much slower. And the Commune, which was essentially a more modern take on Communism, would hate for that to happen.

Obviously access to advanced technology could be held ransom until proper changes were made, but there are two problems. First slavery was outlawed in US in nineteenth century I believe, but all non-whites were still second class citizens well into late twentieth century. That right there is the best prove that changing the law will not necessarily change the society. Second doing so will create some resentment among the aliens. At best it will create resentment among the rich and powerful who were going to lose power due to said changes. At worst the population as a whole will see it as an interference and possibly even an attempt at cultural assimilation. If that happens, the aliens may easily become an enemy in the medium to long term.

Long story short unless the aliens were to be flat out taken over, they may become friends or may become enemies and the Commune is too afraid to take the risk considering their strategic situation. That may not be the best choice, but that is the one they made.

I'm thinking that once the Hegemony is finished digesting this species as well, they'll be in the position to swarm under the Commune simply from the sheer production and resources coming in from three homeworld systems.

The situation isn't all that bad. One of the things I should probably write about, but decided it was kind of too boring, is the fact that the population of the Commune now exceeds the human population of the Hegemony and the gap will only grow. Of course having three races under their control still gives New Earth a lot of power, but the gap isn't that bad. Also there is the Republic (I know, even I sometimes forget about them) which may or may not jump to help the Commune if the things get bad enough. Then there is the fact that the Commune is still ahead in terms of technology (it may not last, but it is a fact for now) and the fact that the carriers aren't really a good weapon against other human controlled player (although whether or not the Hegemony will keep using them also remains to be seen). Last but not least while they have played rather limited role so far, the Commune has some truly heavy fortifications on some of their worlds which may not help them in destroying enemy ships, but makes it very hard to actually do damage to them. In fact when you come down to it the only reason not a single civilian died to the Travellers yet is because of those fortifications.
 

Offline Michael Sandy

  • Commodore
  • **********
  • M
  • Posts: 771
  • Thanked: 83 times
Re: From the Ashes - part 29
« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2017, 04:40:25 PM »
"but with such a limited data what can you do?"

Get more data.  Accept that there will be some breakage in the getting of that data, and work to improve.  The time to learn how to deal with aliens is when the aliens in question are not THAT much of a threat.  I get the reasoning, but I think the way that a real dispassionate scientist would look it is that it is really crucial to learn how to get a better diplomacy result.

And bringing an overwhelming ground force in to conquer them and deal with unrest would certainly be a better thing for that race than it getting eaten by the Destroyer or the Travelers or anybody.

I had a real problem with the Star Trek episodes which held to the Prime Directive when there was a planet killing threat on the way.  Part of that is my Jewish upbringing, which holds that saving a life (or a people) trumps other considerations.
 

Offline Haji (OP)

  • Moderator
  • Captain
  • *****
  • Posts: 442
  • Thanked: 53 times
Re: From the Ashes - part 29
« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2017, 08:43:31 PM »
Get more data.  Accept that there will be some breakage in the getting of that data, and work to improve.  The time to learn how to deal with aliens is when the aliens in question are not THAT much of a threat.  I get the reasoning, but I think the way that a real dispassionate scientist would look it is that it is really crucial to learn how to get a better diplomacy result.

What I meant here is that the Commune has no way of knowing how alien societies would evolve in regards to equality and such. What they would love to get their hands on is the full history of the Takarans and Kinharans but the former has been tempered with by their former monarch and the latter were rather secretive. The Aurorans are not a good scientific material because they are still rather early in development. Or rather they are technologically at the point where humans were experiencing the greatest changes. So in order to get more accurate data the best way would be to study them without interfering with them. Which is kind of what the Commune forces in the system can do from afar.

And bringing an overwhelming ground force in to conquer them and deal with unrest would certainly be a better thing for that race than it getting eaten by the Destroyer or the Travelers or anybody.

That is a fair point... unfortunately it is one being completely disregarded by the Commune. It's not even question of morality for them, they simply don't want to get bogged down in a long ground war. In addition we come back to the possibility of the aliens becoming a long term enemy because of this. Of course them becoming an enemy could be avoided if the Commune just took them over completely. They won't however.

I touched upon this a little when talking about Hegemony prisoners but the Commune is somewhat xenophobic. They don't have anything against other people, but they don't really want any immigration and this have to do with their economic system. Because let's be honest, if you can have very comfortable life without working (and you can in the Commune) why would you work? Logically you wouldn't. However the original colonists were carefully chosen and through combination of upbringing, careful education and a lot of peer pressure, people continue to work because they know that if they become parasites, the system will fall apart at best and at worst humanity will die. This is why a somewhat unreasonably idealistic nation can exist.

But that means bringing large number of random people (of any race) who do not have this upbringing, education and the general drive to contribute towards the society, can lead to huge number of parasites unwilling to work, and cause the entire system crashing down. And this is why the Commune will never, ever add whole planets, especially with population in the billions, to their nation, for as far as they are concerned, this will lead to a very real risk of their entire society falling apart.

Because of this the Commune is generally trying to avoid occupying their enemy. This is also the primary reason they never went after Hegemony worlds. If they had to, they would conquer them, force change of government and some reforms, and then leave. At best it would lead to situation similar to that of modern Germany or Japan in which a previously imperialistic, evil empire ended up being a modern and respected part of the world, but it may also not work. And that fear of not working and creating a new enemy is what prevents the Commune from contacting the aliens, never mind putting forces on their planet. Again, no morality is involved in this decision, merely fear.

One more thing about occupation. The problem with any occupation, even one in the modern, real world, is the PR  which can get tricky even if you do everything right. The reason I mention this is that the Commune values their relation with the Republic greatly and while there has been no formal inter-governmental planning, the Commune generally assumes they will get Republican support against aliens, maybe even the Hegemony, if they need it. In particular Phoenix sent half their fleet to battle the Destroyer despite the fact many citizens were terrified and demanded all forces be kept in system for their protection. Despite lack of any piece of paper the Republic is considered a trusted, proven ally.

It is also an ally that tries its best not to polarise humanity (there is no formal alliance in order to avoid scaring Hegemony that the others are collaborating against it) and who sees the Commune as a little too assertive in dealing with threats. As such there is fear among the Committee that any occupation which will face issues, whether it was the fault of the Commune or not, can jeopardize their relationship. This is, again, a major reason they didn't go after the Hegemony after the previous two wars (although the fact that the second war happened with the threat of the Destroyers just days old had the most bearing. It would be foolish to commit to long war with a possible second incursion looming).

I had a real problem with the Star Trek episodes which held to the Prime Directive when there was a planet killing threat on the way.  Part of that is my Jewish upbringing, which holds that saving a life (or a people) trumps other considerations.

The prime directive is something that could be talked about for hours. I generally agree with some of it's provisions but not with many others. Certainly not dealing with natural disasters is distasteful, that I can easily agree with. However if you're implying that the Commune follows something similar, they don't. Their decision not to contact the aliens was made on purely pragmatic grounds. In addition they would help against a natural disaster even if this meant showing themselves. Last but not least they dealt with nearby threats (the system of Behemoth, adjacent to the Aurora, is named after a two hundred thousand tonne Spectre warship destroyed there after all) and they specifically monitor the system to ensure nothing happens to the locals. Or that at least nothing can surprise the Commune by moving through the system.
 

Offline Michael Sandy

  • Commodore
  • **********
  • M
  • Posts: 771
  • Thanked: 83 times
Re: From the Ashes - part 29
« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2017, 09:49:36 PM »
Oh, I definitely see how their position on uplift/conquest is internally consistent.  And I would certainly prefer to live in the Commune rather than the Hegemony.  I would certainly like the option of a comfortable life without working.  I believe that unless a society is truly in a desperate situation, the equation should not be "Work or starve" but rather, "Work in order to get more of the really fun toys and services this society has available".

And if a society in fiction existed that I had ZERO disagreements with their priorities, I would have problems with its realism in a story.  It would be a Mary Sue society. ;)

Alright, so the Commune is Xenophobic in some ways.  What might change that?  Or what would happen if the Commune found a connection to Kinharan space or vice versa BEFORE the Hegemony could conquer them?

I had a momentary imagining of a scenario, rejected for reasons following.  I imagined what might happen if the captain of a Commune ship found itself in Kinharan space, and sent a message threatening or implying that the Kinharans would be protected by the Commune.  But it wouldn't happen because such cowboy decision making for the whole nation is not something a ship's captain could do.

What WOULD the AI running the Commune do if it found the opportunity to aid an enemy of the Hegemony, possibly discretely, without the Hegemony finding out?
 

Offline Haji (OP)

  • Moderator
  • Captain
  • *****
  • Posts: 442
  • Thanked: 53 times
Re: From the Ashes - part 29
« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2017, 03:33:43 PM »
Ah, my bad. I thought you had problem with the logic/consistency of the situation and writing an illogical or inconsistent character (or a nation) is a big mistake when writing fiction, hence the infodumps.

As for the Kinharan situation. What the Commune, both the AI and the humans, would love to do would be to find another way into Kinharan space and help them to defend it, by sending their own forces to repel any aggression. They would very specifically not declare war on the Hegemony, they would merely "protect the territorial integrity and freedom of the race". It would almost certainly end up with a fight anyway, but once the Hegemony knew the Commune was serious and they would have to fight two powerful nations at once, the expectation is that New Earth would negotiate rather than continue to fight.

That is what they would love to do, but there are three problems. The single biggest one and possibly the reason they would never do that in the end, is the Travellers. The Commune already has two entire fleets (out of seven) defending against them and a new anomaly may appear at any time and place which means they need even more forces on hand to deal with potential new front. This is especially worrying since the original anomaly appeared in Peter's Crossing which was at the time the second most heavily populated systems and one of the largest suppliers of gallicite for the nation. The possibility of a new anomaly opening in the Athens system (where some 13% of all the Commune citizens live) continues to be a major worry for the government.

The other two problems are of course lack of any such connection and the fact Kinharans may be unwilling to trust the Commune as they only interacted with the Hegemony. Such a strategy would require after all for significant human forces to move through their territory and orbit one of their worlds.

Aside from that I think the Commune would be more than willing to share technology. The problem with that scenario is that they would be unwilling to give up anything the Hegemony doesn't have and it may be difficult to ascertain what exactly New Earth has or doesn't have.

Another option, one they would almost certainly use, would be to allow the Kinharans to move through some of the Commune territory. The idea is that the Confederation could planet colonies Hegemony could not reach without declaring war on the Commune. This would not really help the aliens with the war, but it would allow them to function as an independent nation and possibly reclaim their territory if an opportunity presents itself.

One more thing that could be possible now that I think about it, would be to sell some of the missiles to the Confederation. Because of how Aurora works, reverse engineering missiles is impossible, so even if they were to fall into Hegemony hands, it would not really matter. Meanwhile they would significantly improved Kinharan fighting potential. The problem is that the Commune doesn't have infinite supply, their manpower is limited which means expanding the production is difficult and the sheer size of the Confederate fleet means their stocks would be heavily depleted by such a sell. Of course older models are easier to give up, but those are not as good and would not be as great a help as anti-matter era munitions.