Iconians vs Empire

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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby EnterpriseSovereign » 2015-10-19 11:32am

Lord Revan wrote:
Batman wrote:When, exactly, did the Iconians teleport a Dyson Sphere to another galaxy?

during the intro for the Heralds the Iconians transported a Dyson Sphere from Andromeda to the Milky Way (near Iconia to be exact). This act gives rather big "oh crap" reaction to the Alpha Quadrant Powers and for the purpose of this discussion STO is valid storywise.

A Dyson Sphere which, if you recall was densely enough packed with ships that they blocked out the light from the star at the centre. Yet they never seemed to show up in battle with convincing numbers- either they were holding back their full strength or in trying to take over the whole galaxy at once they spread themselves very thinly.

And we cannot forget that this was accomplished by the harnessing of the Omega molecule, something that was beyond even the Borg. Had they thought to use them to power their starships as well as their gateways, they would have been completely unstoppable.

We cannot forget what was revealed in the final mission- that Sela managed to convince the Dominion of all people to join in the defense of the Milky Way. This only came to light at the last minute, and was noted as ironic in that it took the threat of the Iconians to unite the forces of the Galaxy. Of course, now that it's over the main players will likely go their separate ways or begin fighting over what's left of the galaxy :lol:
It's no use debating a moron; they drag you down to their level then beat you with experience.

Your claim of using a scientific equation is laughable when all you have done is butcher science to the point it makes 'The Core' look like a fucking documentary. Just because you have the attention span of a fruit fly doesn't mean the rest of us are so encumbered.

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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby Lord Revan » 2015-10-19 11:46am

EnterpriseSovereign wrote:
Lord Revan wrote:
Batman wrote:When, exactly, did the Iconians teleport a Dyson Sphere to another galaxy?

during the intro for the Heralds the Iconians transported a Dyson Sphere from Andromeda to the Milky Way (near Iconia to be exact). This act gives rather big "oh crap" reaction to the Alpha Quadrant Powers and for the purpose of this discussion STO is valid storywise.

A Dyson Sphere which, if you recall was densely enough packed with ships that they blocked out the light from the star at the centre. Yet they never seemed to show up in battle with convincing numbers- either they were holding back their full strength or in trying to take over the whole galaxy at once they spread themselves very thinly.

And we cannot forget that this was accomplished by the harnessing of the Omega molecule, something that was beyond even the Borg. Had they thought to use them to power their starships as well as their gateways, they would have been completely unstoppable.

We cannot forget what was revealed in the final mission- that Sela managed to convince the Dominion of all people to join in the defense of the Milky Way. This only came to light at the last minute, and was noted as ironic in that it took the threat of the Iconians to unite the forces of the Galaxy. Of course, now that it's over the main players will likely go their separate ways or begin fighting over what's left of the galaxy :lol:

Yeah main characteristic of the Iconians in STO is that they're arrogant to a point that it's hurting their war effort, while they had the numbers to overpower the alpha quadrant powers easily they deployment of those numbers was done so poorly that had the alpha quadrant powers been able to achive a 1:1 or better kill ratio they would have probably won as even now most conflicts ended in a loss of ships for the Iconians and they were unable to capture Qu'nos dispite of trying to do so.
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby Simon_Jester » 2015-10-19 06:40pm

One possibility is that the Iconians were trying to conserve fuel by not gating around massively more starships than are needed. We know that they do have something recognizable as an economy; they produce equipment at a finite rate, manufacture omega particles for use as fuel in identifiable facilities, they themselves store energy in their own person at a finite rate and can be worn down by sustained energy demands.

So sure they have stupidly massive reserves, but that doesn't mean they're going to use them all at once.

Another point is that the Borg invaded the Alpha/Beta Quadrants in huge numbers only a year or two earlier in the events of the Star Trek Online plotline. And while the Borg have been taking a pounding in the last few 'seasons' (ever since Delta Rising, really), they're apparently still tough enough to be intruding regularly on Federation, Klingon, and Romulan space.

Since every Borg in the region would predictably make a beeline for any opportunity to assimilate Iconian technology, the Iconians may be committing a considerable fraction of their total fleet to battling the Borg. Which could take quite a lot of strength given that the Borg are numerous and widely established.
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby mr friendly guy » 2015-10-20 12:56pm

I just like to point out for some people we are talking about ST online and not canon Trek. :D

Since STO is set several decades after the end of VOY, their ships are somewhat more powerful. I highly doubt it would stand up to the Empire though. I vaguely remembered the Iconians had a planet killer which they used to destroy the Preserver sanctuary world, so that might be able to destroy the Empire ships, but again the problem is numbers. The Iconians would have won against the AQ powers if it wasn't for contrived plot device, but again that doesn't really translate to enough to beat the Empire in a pure war of attrition with ship vs ship.

Now if they decided to use concepts such as strategic depth, they might have a chance. That is they could use the Iconian gates, based it in another galaxy out of the Empire's reach, gate in a planet killer into a lightly defended world, and then attack it and run away.

Ground combat is where STO made the most gains compared to canon Trek. In the series only the Borg have personal shields, but even ensigns just beginning their career get personal shields. Pretty much most people have armour of some sort, even if you can disable the visuals and its not obvious they are wearing it. :D

IIRC the consensus is that Storm Trooper armour can resist the NDF effects of phasers, disruptors etc. However I don't think the Iconians use such weaponry. Heck, I bet you most players don't use phasers. I use tetyron weapons mainly with some radiant antiproton weapons thrown in the mix for my ground crew.

The other improvement is Captains now have various Kit powers and your bridge crew also have nice powers. Think of them like wizard powers if STO was a fantasy setting. Presumably its due to a combination of the kit and the tricorders to generate weird effects - including healing, damage, placate effects. Included radiation damage, or using satellite strikes (engineering powers) or other orbital strikes (your bridge officer can have this as a command ability). Despite this, the Iconian heralds are still hard to kill on basic level of difficulty. I assume they become somewhat harder on elite setting, and if we are generous, we attribute the higher end as the upper limit of Iconian ground capability.

I personally found the Iconians tough without some of the higher end gear. Putting that altogther, my intuition would be that the Iconians would be competitive on the ground (in the absence of air support for the Empire) but we demolished in space in a straight up fight. They however could use strategic depth and try to weaken the empire that way by bringing in their planet killer and escaping, sort of like a country using ballistic missiles against one that doesn't to offset its weaker navy.
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby Lord Revan » 2015-10-20 03:32pm

the Iconian "planet killer" is actually a bog standard dreadnaught and not really a planet killer in the same way as the Undine or Xindi ones (or the Death Star) are as while there probably isn't alot left alive on the planet after the hit, the physical struture of the planet remains mostly unharmed (there's a burnt area about the size of north america (assuming the planet was earth sized) but the planet is mostly intact).

As for Starfleet vessel, actually I think there wasn't that much improvement between the 2380s and 2410, I mean the Voyager and the Defiant are both present and relevant (and in case of Voyager she had been in "mothballs" until Admiral Tuvok put it back on duty as his personal flagship). Also the True Way ships remain a threat to Starfleet vessels and it's unlikely they've gained major upgrades since the Dominion War (being Terrorists and all)
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby Simon_Jester » 2015-10-20 08:34pm

It is strongly implied that Voyager was extensively retrofitted with the very latest technologies available circa 2409...

"When planning first began for Operation Delta Rising, the Starfleet Corps of Engineers quickly realized that an updated version of the famed Intrepid class would be essential for the mission's success. Most of the advanced technology used in the Pathfinder was first tested on the U.S.S. Voyager, which was completely updated before it departed for the Delta Quadrant. When Admiral Tuvok was satisfied with the ship's performance, work could begin to produce Pathfinders for the fleet. "

With the Pathfinder class being a massively upgraded and updated Intrepid variant- so it is strongly implied that ships have gotten a lot better during that timeframe.

Defiant is still around, as are a host of ships of relatively older Starfleet classes... but there is a good explanation for this. In the Star Trek Online canon, the Federation has been at war or in danger of war with a massively resurgent Klingon Empire (plus various other threats) for a decade. It is likely that any ships not already torn up for scrap metal would thus be mobilized and retrofitted as far as possible.
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby Lord Revan » 2015-10-20 09:00pm

Simon_Jester wrote:It is strongly implied that Voyager was extensively retrofitted with the very latest technologies available circa 2409...

"When planning first began for Operation Delta Rising, the Starfleet Corps of Engineers quickly realized that an updated version of the famed Intrepid class would be essential for the mission's success. Most of the advanced technology used in the Pathfinder was first tested on the U.S.S. Voyager, which was completely updated before it departed for the Delta Quadrant. When Admiral Tuvok was satisfied with the ship's performance, work could begin to produce Pathfinders for the fleet. "

With the Pathfinder class being a massively upgraded and updated Intrepid variant- so it is strongly implied that ships have gotten a lot better during that timeframe.

That may be I've not looked at Pathfinder class so I don't know.

while the KDF ships (and possibly RSE ships) are upgraded to match the Starfleet vessels, the fact that the Galors and Keldons of the True Way still pose a threat it's likely that the 2410 Starfleet ships aren't that much more powerful then their 2370s-2380s counterparts, after all it doesn't make sense for the True Way (or cardassians in general) to have access to the lastest weapons tech, more like they have surpluss gear from SF and KDF as well as more leftovers from the Dominion War and more importantly the Dominion ships from the actual Dominion War are treated as just as dangerous as "modern" Dominion ships
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby EnterpriseSovereign » 2015-10-20 09:39pm

Lord Revan wrote:
Simon_Jester wrote:It is strongly implied that Voyager was extensively retrofitted with the very latest technologies available circa 2409...

"When planning first began for Operation Delta Rising, the Starfleet Corps of Engineers quickly realized that an updated version of the famed Intrepid class would be essential for the mission's success. Most of the advanced technology used in the Pathfinder was first tested on the U.S.S. Voyager, which was completely updated before it departed for the Delta Quadrant. When Admiral Tuvok was satisfied with the ship's performance, work could begin to produce Pathfinders for the fleet. "

With the Pathfinder class being a massively upgraded and updated Intrepid variant- so it is strongly implied that ships have gotten a lot better during that timeframe.

That may be I've not looked at Pathfinder class so I don't know.

while the KDF ships (and possibly RSE ships) are upgraded to match the Starfleet vessels, the fact that the Galors and Keldons of the True Way still pose a threat it's likely that the 2410 Starfleet ships aren't that much more powerful then their 2370s-2380s counterparts, after all it doesn't make sense for the True Way (or cardassians in general) to have access to the lastest weapons tech, more like they have surpluss gear from SF and KDF as well as more leftovers from the Dominion War and more importantly the Dominion ships from the actual Dominion War are treated as just as dangerous as "modern" Dominion ships

That's what I found the most troubling about the Wormhole Aliens simply moving the Dominion fleet 30-odd years into the future and them not being outmatched by post-Voyager starships, in that respect it flies in the face of tech progress. Of course, given that the fleet was a couple of thousand ships strong it would have taken time for the AQ powers to assemble enough ships to wipe them out.

The one thing we don't know that would help determine the size of the Iconian fleet is the radius of the Dyson sphere it arrived in, since from that we could work out the volume. Assuming the ships are just arranged such that they're at the outer periphery of the sphere, with a surface area of 2.8×10^17 km2 and 1 ship per sq km (assuming a radius of 1 AU), that's still some 280 quadrillion ships as a lower limit. Crunch the numbers for the volume and it gets even sillier, since you get 14 septillion ships :lol: To put that into context, that's 35 trillion ships per star in the Milky Way galaxy :lol:
It's no use debating a moron; they drag you down to their level then beat you with experience.

Your claim of using a scientific equation is laughable when all you have done is butcher science to the point it makes 'The Core' look like a fucking documentary. Just because you have the attention span of a fruit fly doesn't mean the rest of us are so encumbered.

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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby mr friendly guy » 2015-10-21 12:26am

Lord Revan wrote:the Iconian "planet killer" is actually a bog standard dreadnaught and not really a planet killer in the same way as the Undine or Xindi ones (or the Death Star) are as while there probably isn't alot left alive on the planet after the hit, the physical struture of the planet remains mostly unharmed (there's a burnt area about the size of north america (assuming the planet was earth sized) but the planet is mostly intact).

As for Starfleet vessel, actually I think there wasn't that much improvement between the 2380s and 2410, I mean the Voyager and the Defiant are both present and relevant (and in case of Voyager she had been in "mothballs" until Admiral Tuvok put it back on duty as his personal flagship). Also the True Way ships remain a threat to Starfleet vessels and it's unlikely they've gained major upgrades since the Dominion War (being Terrorists and all)


My Galaxies and Sovereigns could match Dominion Dreadnoughts in Foundry quests one on one, and maybe two on one with brute strength rather than any skill. These are the same dreadnoughts which survived a barrage of quantum torps from a Defiant class ship (USS Valiant) in its weak spot and was more than a match for the Valiant. Its not much of a contest against a tier 6 carrier ships where I can massacre 3 of them at a time.

A few other things are also more frequently available in STO, such as transphasics and shields to resist modern transphasics. So even if it doesn't add much against SW ships, they should do more damage against 24th century Trek ships.

Back to the Defiant class. Upgraded defiants are like, what tier 5. They won't be a match for tier 6 pilot ships.

My feeling is STO is a decent amount more powerful than at the end of VOY, but still way outclassed by the Empire.

They and the Iconians still have one trick up their sleeve though. Viral matrix might be able to knock shields down for them to beam over stuff or do something, but that's still a big if.
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby mr friendly guy » 2015-10-21 11:12am

Simon_Jester wrote:It is strongly implied that Voyager was extensively retrofitted with the very latest technologies available circa 2409...

"When planning first began for Operation Delta Rising, the Starfleet Corps of Engineers quickly realized that an updated version of the famed Intrepid class would be essential for the mission's success. Most of the advanced technology used in the Pathfinder was first tested on the U.S.S. Voyager, which was completely updated before it departed for the Delta Quadrant. When Admiral Tuvok was satisfied with the ship's performance, work could begin to produce Pathfinders for the fleet. "

With the Pathfinder class being a massively upgraded and updated Intrepid variant- so it is strongly implied that ships have gotten a lot better during that timeframe.

Defiant is still around, as are a host of ships of relatively older Starfleet classes... but there is a good explanation for this. In the Star Trek Online canon, the Federation has been at war or in danger of war with a massively resurgent Klingon Empire (plus various other threats) for a decade. It is likely that any ships not already torn up for scrap metal would thus be mobilized and retrofitted as far as possible.

Given the way in canon trek an Excelsior class could be modified to match the Defiant and how in STO we can simply take out engines, warp cores, weapons out and replace with another, it makes sense that older ships can be a threat to newer ships with just changing things like shields and weapons and specialised consoles. I speculate modifications to the Excelsior were simply changing weapons to more modern ones, updating the warp core to power them etc. Its hull isn't as badass as the Defiants with ablative armour, but it could now put up a fight.
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby EnterpriseSovereign » 2015-10-21 02:21pm

mr friendly guy wrote:
Simon_Jester wrote:It is strongly implied that Voyager was extensively retrofitted with the very latest technologies available circa 2409...

"When planning first began for Operation Delta Rising, the Starfleet Corps of Engineers quickly realized that an updated version of the famed Intrepid class would be essential for the mission's success. Most of the advanced technology used in the Pathfinder was first tested on the U.S.S. Voyager, which was completely updated before it departed for the Delta Quadrant. When Admiral Tuvok was satisfied with the ship's performance, work could begin to produce Pathfinders for the fleet. "

With the Pathfinder class being a massively upgraded and updated Intrepid variant- so it is strongly implied that ships have gotten a lot better during that timeframe.

Defiant is still around, as are a host of ships of relatively older Starfleet classes... but there is a good explanation for this. In the Star Trek Online canon, the Federation has been at war or in danger of war with a massively resurgent Klingon Empire (plus various other threats) for a decade. It is likely that any ships not already torn up for scrap metal would thus be mobilized and retrofitted as far as possible.

Given the way in canon trek an Excelsior class could be modified to match the Defiant and how in STO we can simply take out engines, warp cores, weapons out and replace with another, it makes sense that older ships can be a threat to newer ships with just changing things like shields and weapons and specialised consoles. I speculate modifications to the Excelsior were simply changing weapons to more modern ones, updating the warp core to power them etc. Its hull isn't as badass as the Defiants with ablative armour, but it could now put up a fight.

Link
Both ships in the above example are armed with Quantum Torpedoes, and while neither is willing to use them it's clear QRs would fuck up whichever ship is on the receiving end.

It does make you wonder what ST technologies are restricted by the hull you're working with, be it canon or STO. An example I recall from In a Mirror Darkly is that MU Trip upon seeing the Constitution is to imagine how many warp coils it had. Interestingly, the only canon ST ship that had longer warp nacelles than the Excelsior class is the Sovereign. Certainly for the Dominion War the Feds were forced to use Mirandas and Excelsiors despite their relative antiquity.
It's no use debating a moron; they drag you down to their level then beat you with experience.

Your claim of using a scientific equation is laughable when all you have done is butcher science to the point it makes 'The Core' look like a fucking documentary. Just because you have the attention span of a fruit fly doesn't mean the rest of us are so encumbered.

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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby Simon_Jester » 2015-10-22 12:07am

Lord Revan wrote:while the KDF ships (and possibly RSE ships) are upgraded to match the Starfleet vessels, the fact that the Galors and Keldons of the True Way still pose a threat it's likely that the 2410 Starfleet ships aren't that much more powerful then their 2370s-2380s counterparts, after all it doesn't make sense for the True Way (or cardassians in general) to have access to the lastest weapons tech...
This is rrue... but frankly, I never got much of a sense that the True Way was really a serious threat. Their Keldabe-class battleships could pose a credible threat to the Tier IV ships (e.g. the Galaxy, Intrepid, and Defiant-classes). But those are themselves hulls dating back to the Dominion War.

The 'top tier' of ships in STO is two generations of ship design beyond that, and I wouldn't be surprised to find that it outclasses them by at least as much as a Sovereign outclasses an Ambassador... or by as much as an Ambassador outclasses a Connie.

...more importantly the Dominion ships from the actual Dominion War are treated as just as dangerous as "modern" Dominion ships
This is a fairly compelling point. On the other hand, again, the Federation ships that were physically present in the region around Deep Space 9 during the events of Second Wave look like they weren't Starfleet's varsity.

Which makes sense. This is a region of space where the Klingons and Federation aren't even bothering to fight each other intensively. And by this I mean they're not fighting each other intensely even before the decision to form Task Force Omega, before collaboration against the Undine or the exploration of the Dyson Spheres or any of that.

The Cardassian Front is, frankly, a backwater region of space. Compared to the very strategically sensitive border region between the Federation and the Klingons, compared to the need to deal with the chaos in Romulan space, compared to the Borg threat, the Cardassian Front is the ideal place to send a 30-40 year old starship that's past its prime.

So at the point in the storyline where the events of that arc take place... I would honestly not be surprised if the ships available to fight the Dominion fleet from Second Wave turn out to be many of the same starships that would have been fighting them anyway back in the 2370s. That doesn't mean Starfleet and the KDF don't have other, more powerful ships available elsewhere in the quadrant. Particularly at a time when they're either still actively fighting each other or in danger of breaking back out into open warfare at any moment.

Which helps explain why the arrival of the Enterprise-F is treated (plotwise) as the turning point in the battle to retake DS9 from that Dominion fleet. It's not just that the new Enterprise is a very large combatant, it's that she's modern compared to all the other ships on the field. Like having an Iowa-class battleship with gunnery radar and superheavy armor-piercing 16" shells show up at Jutland and start punching out German battleships with vastly greater hit rates and hit firepower than any of the British ships could match.

EnterpriseSovereign wrote:The one thing we don't know that would help determine the size of the Iconian fleet is the radius of the Dyson sphere it arrived in, since from that we could work out the volume. Assuming the ships are just arranged such that they're at the outer periphery of the sphere, with a surface area of 2.8×10^17 km2 and 1 ship per sq km (assuming a radius of 1 AU), that's still some 280 quadrillion ships as a lower limit. Crunch the numbers for the volume and it gets even sillier, since you get 14 septillion ships :lol: To put that into context, that's 35 trillion ships per star in the Milky Way galaxy :lol:
Actually, the Iconian fleet you see in Uneasy Allies... it blocks out the sun from where you are standing, but there is no evidence that it's blocking out the sun all over the entire Dyson sphere.

Moreover, while the vast cloud of ships is far enough away that you can't really make out individual ships, it is close enough that one of those ships can detach from the Iconian fleet and start moving towards your position fairly quickly.

There might well 'only' be a few million ships in such a fleet, for all I know.

mr friendly guy wrote:My Galaxies and Sovereigns could match Dominion Dreadnoughts in Foundry quests one on one, and maybe two on one with brute strength rather than any skill. These are the same dreadnoughts which survived a barrage of quantum torps from a Defiant class ship (USS Valiant) in its weak spot and was more than a match for the Valiant. Its not much of a contest against a tier 6 carrier ships where I can massacre 3 of them at a time.
Now THAT is taking too much out of game mechanics. After all, there's no way you can reasonably claim that your optimized Tier 6 ship build(s) represent the 'normal' starships of the major powers in Star Trek Online.

They and the Iconians still have one trick up their sleeve though. Viral matrix might be able to knock shields down for them to beam over stuff or do something, but that's still a big if.
The Iconians do have information warfare that might actually pose problems for Star Wars computers- their software seems quite capable of hacking into and disabling ships it encounters even on 'autopilot,' with no direct support from a programmer.

Also, Iconian gateways don't seem to require you to knock down enemy shields. Worf and Data (as I recall) used an Iconian gateway to travel directly from the surface of Iconia (and its ruins) to the Enterprise-D, when her shields were still up. They really do represent a drastic advance over transporters, and we never seen any evidence, either in the main canon or in STO, that it is possible to jam or interfere with Iconian gateways by any means other than by physically walking up to the gateway generating machinery and destroying it.
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby Lord Revan » 2015-10-22 12:31am

I'm not claiming that 2410 ships aren't better then 2370-2380 ships, what I'm saying is that the diffence isn't like between the 2160s and 2260s ships, where we have in canon that a pair of Mirror NXs couldn't make a dent on pre-refit constitution, while the connie swatted them like flies.

Also when I said that True Way is considered a threat I also didn't mean it's major thing that needs top of the line ships but it's not like the ships in "Outrageous Okana" where Riker treated the ships locking weapons on the Enterprise as nothing to be conserned about (the source for the "no lasers" argument trekkies love), hell later in the same episode when they talk about regulations calling for Yellow Alert (and raising shields) that regulation is treated as horribly outdated. Instead True Way ships are treated as something that can harm a Starfleet or KDF ship and hostile action from them should responded in kind.
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby mr friendly guy » 2015-10-22 04:14am

Simon_Jester wrote:Now THAT is taking too much out of game mechanics. After all, there's no way you can reasonably claim that your optimized Tier 6 ship build(s) represent the 'normal' starships of the major powers in Star Trek Online.
.

To be fair, my ship wasn't that optimised when I went against them the first time. Although I went back with an optimised pilot tactical escort, with torpedo spreads, cannon fire and kemocite laced weaponry, micro torps and isokinetic cannon and I can wipe 3 out in the alpha strike. :D Now if I went with a tier 6 ship, poorly built and I would maybe destroy one of them, before being destroyed by the others. This has happened to be a few times when testing out new tier 6 ships with different builds.

Now optimised ships are certainly not the bog standard of the STO powers, although I will argue even without reputation gear, a tier 6 ship should wipe the floor with a Dominion Dreadnought from the 2370s. The other thing that is interesting is considering the the RR, UFP and the KDF are now hiring what amounts to mercenaries, er I mean players and letting them run amok. How many players are there in STO, and what the average number of toons each player uses? It might not be the predominant builds, but if there are enough players, one can argue that these players with reasonably optimised builds could make a sizeable fraction of the defense forces of the STO powers.

Back to the Iconian question, I suspect most of the ships destroyed by the Iconians in the disastrous battles, ie ones not commanded by players weren't necessarily of higher grade. We could make a reasonable assumption that tier 6 ships are reasonable threats to Iconian vessels one on one, and in a few numbers could destroy their dreadnoughts. This of course would mean that the Iconian ships would pretty much be screwed in a straight up fight with the Empire, unless as you postulate, they use things like viral matrix and the gates to attack the Empire ships.
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Simon_Jester
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Re: Iconians vs Empire

Postby Simon_Jester » 2015-10-22 06:23am

Lord Revan wrote:I'm not claiming that 2410 ships aren't better then 2370-2380 ships, what I'm saying is that the diffence isn't like between the 2160s and 2260s ships, where we have in canon that a pair of Mirror NXs couldn't make a dent on pre-refit constitution, while the connie swatted them like flies.

Also when I said that True Way is considered a threat I also didn't mean it's major thing that needs top of the line ships but it's not like the ships in "Outrageous Okana" [that were seen as a joke]. Instead True Way ships are treated as something that can harm a Starfleet or KDF ship and hostile action from them should responded in kind.
Okay, fair enough.

mr friendly guy wrote:Now optimised ships are certainly not the bog standard of the STO powers, although I will argue even without reputation gear, a tier 6 ship should wipe the floor with a Dominion Dreadnought from the 2370s. The other thing that is interesting is considering the the RR, UFP and the KDF are now hiring what amounts to mercenaries, er I mean players and letting them run amok...
[Shakes head]

Look, things which are purely consequences of game mechanics are the LAST thing we should evaluate. In this case, the hordes of players are a consequence of STO being a massively multiplayer computer game. The canonical 'plot' is the single-player mission content. And there really isn't room in those for more than one of these special super-captains, if only because there is ONE series of missions. There can't be a thousand people who all have super-ships and all defeated the Voth, the Vaadwaur, the Iconians, and whatever, there's no way to actually have that happen because they'd have to all have been present for the critical events, which would make no sense.

At most, we might assume there is actually one such 'PC'-level character per faction, who is one of the most successful captains in their respective fleet. And in terms of reputation, they would be on par with the captains of the 'flagship' vessels Enterprise, Bortasqu, and Lleiset. Comparable to Kirk or Picard or Sisko in their respective eras, in terms of their reputation for 'get weird impressive stuff done.'

Credit for the mid- and endgame content would logically have to be distributed among the three of them, then- i.e. only one of them discovers the Preserver archive, only one of them discovers the truth behind the Vaadwaur by infiltrating their bases, only one of them accompanies Worf through the Iconian gateway in Sphere of Influence, and so on... and it wasn't the same person doing all these things.

You could subdivide things further, but you would logically have to distribute credit for success further and further. You COULD imagine a case where there are a few dozen 'PC' captains, each of which was only responsible for completing a few of the big dramatic missions (say, six or seven Federation captains who collaborated in bringing down B'Vat, a bunch of Romulan captains who jointly experienced the events of the Romulan campaign separately, and so on).

But then that would be near the limit, and each individual PC captain is sounding a lot less impressive and badass.

Back to the Iconian question, I suspect most of the ships destroyed by the Iconians in the disastrous battles, ie ones not commanded by players weren't necessarily of higher grade. We could make a reasonable assumption that tier 6 ships are reasonable threats to Iconian vessels one on one, and in a few numbers could destroy their dreadnoughts. This of course would mean that the Iconian ships would pretty much be screwed in a straight up fight with the Empire, unless as you postulate, they use things like viral matrix and the gates to attack the Empire ships.
Honestly the Iconians are screwed in space no matter what happens. They just don't have firepower, their ships will be getting exploded left and right. At best they could maybe lurk around lightly populated regions and use their information warfare abilities (what you keep calling "viral matrix," for those who don't play STO) to hack isolated ships and take them down.

They could, at best, win firepower duels with the lighter ships. An Iconian raider or cruiser might be able to cross swords with a Lancer or a Corellian Corvette or something, and their big battleships and dreadnoughts maybe have the muscle to handle some of the lighter frigates. A ship like an Acclamator would just be too much gun for them to handle without swarming tactics.

However, the Iconians do have very large numbers of ships, and by all appearances, nearly unlimited mobility. If they develop a realistic picture of the tactical situation and start avoiding the ships they can't fight (and there may well be 'only' a few tens of thousands of the big star destroyer types in the galaxy, let alone anything heavier), they could cause a great deal of inconvenience. Especially if the Iconian fleet numbers less like a million ships and more like a billion.*

The Iconian ground armies are also a serious threat. The real question is, how many foot soldiers do the Iconians have? We never see evidence of them being in danger of running out of troops, but they'd have to rely entirely on their Heralds for this (Elachi and Solanae are rare, lurking creatures, and the Vaadwaur just aren't numerous enough to conquer on their behalf outside their home quadrant). Did they create enough Heralds to win ground campaigns in parallel on millions of worlds? Clearly they haven't been using that many soldiers against the Alpha Quadrant powers- and why would they leave 99.9% of their strength in reserve?

It sort of makes sense that they might do so with starships, because starships are energy-intensive to operate. It would sort of make sense for the Iconians to spend immense amounts of time building a fleet they knew would be unstoppable Come The Day. They are immortal after all, so there's no reason not to just keep building ships for millenia. They're not in a hurry to extract revenge and conquer the galaxy. But they might very well decide to only use as much of that fleet as they think they need to totally, rapidly overwhelm all resistance in the region they're trying to conquer, because of the metaphorical fuel bills.

But there is no similar logic to ground troops. If the Iconians breed trillions of combat Heralds they have to feed them whether or not said Heralds are busy conquering the galaxy. So there's no reason NOT to use them to massively invade every planet they attack, with armies overwhelmingly larger than the entire population of the target world (i.e. one Herald per living Klingon on Q'o'nos).

I guess then the limiting factor on the infrastructure would be gateway technology. Gateways are energy-intensive. Opening at most a dozen or so is enough to fatally drain the energies of an Iconian who is nigh-immune to Star Trek hand weapons due to her physiology, and who can casually spam high-end, arguably tank-busting energy attacks of her own with little difficulty and NO perceptible loss of her vital energies. So it might not be possible to invade Q'o'nos with a trillion Heralds, even if that many Heralds physically exist, because you can't open a billion portals for them all to march through. And if you 'only' open, say, ten thousand portals... well, your invasion will be delayed and bottlenecked by the time it takes all those Heralds to physically walk through doors of finite width. A much less numerous enemy could conceivably 'bottle up' much of your invasion force in this way.

But this limitation would also apply to fighting Star Wars.
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*I simply do not believe the Iconians have enough ships to block out the sun everywhere in a Dyson sphere, if only because then they could win by default by the simple expedient of materializing a thousand ships over every inhabited world in the galaxy with tons left over as strategic reserves. It makes more sense to believe that the Iconian fleet had massed over the one area that Sela and the PC had arrived in, and were blocking out the sun there.
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