Resource War

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Resource War

Post by KraytKing » 2017-05-29 02:30pm

Take the scenario from FaxModem1's "Death Squadron in the Milky Way" topic. The fleet will eventually run out of three major things required for warfare, as they are not present in the Trekverse: tibanna gas, bacta, and hypermatter. You can choose for them to find one of the three in relative abundance, enough to satisfy their needs. No reserves of the other two will ever be found. Tibanna gas for the weapons, bacta for the soldiers, or hypermatter for the hyperdrive. For the purposes of the debate, the objective is for the Empire to conquer the galaxy. Which resource do you choose?
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Re: Resource War

Post by Crazedwraith » 2017-05-29 02:36pm

Hypermatter. It's not just for hyperdrive, it's all power generation.

Other forms of guns and medicine are available. But you need power above all else.
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Re: Resource War

Post by KraytKing » 2017-05-29 02:43pm

There are alternate forms of power generation, but none on the scale necessary for the hyperdrive of a Star Destroyer, let alone the Executor. Power needs for weapons and life support can be met with local technology, but not the hyperdrive. I meant what I said.
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Re: Resource War

Post by Q99 » 2017-05-29 02:53pm

Hypermatter.

If you have power, then eventually you can rig up other weapons to use it even if you run out of gas. And better power without guns than guns without power.

There's other forms of medicine aside from bacta too. Healing will, granted, be plenty slower, but it's a force multiplier for advanced medicine rather than a requirement. Heck, Trek arguably has better.

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Re: Resource War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2017-05-29 03:03pm

Hypermatter. It's a weird material and probably the rarest/most valuable. Tibanna or a reasonable substitute should be readily available given the number of gas giant planets in the galaxy. As for Bacta, that's not even a naturally-occurring material - it's a chemical made from a couple of different plant varieties found on Thyferra. So, I may not have amounts of Bacta available - doesn't mean I can't create local substitutes or plant crops of the required plants.

Basically, tibanna and bacta have work-arounds or substitutes that could be used, hypermatter doesn't, not if the SW forces want to conquer the galaxy. Hence, I'll take that one.
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Re: Resource War

Post by KraytKing » 2017-05-29 03:13pm

Again, I meant what I said. Star Wars weapons derive their massive power from tibanna gas, not energy. You could certainly have Star Trek-like beam weapons and such feeding solely off of energy, but you would sacrifice orders of magnitude of firepower. Scaling would work, but you would lose the biggatons of extra power. Just putting that out there for reference.
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Re: Resource War

Post by Crazedwraith » 2017-05-29 03:23pm

Were are you getting the idea that Tibanna gas is so very important from? AFAIK it doesn't magically increase the amount of energy you pump into it. That all comes from the power generators. Every source I can recall has it separate from the power supplier. Blasters have tibanna and power packs providing ammo.

I also can't remember a source that has stuff bigger than blasters needing it.

eta: And even then if you believe the biggaton calcs, you could easily lose a few orders of magnitude in firepower and handily outclass anything ST has.
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Re: Resource War

Post by KraytKing » 2017-05-29 03:49pm

Tibanna lends explosive power. Imagine a 20mm cannon in our world. The tibanna is the high explosive within. Without it, a lump of lead is still effective, just reduced. Same effect here. I'm not trying to tilt the discussion in favor of one choice, I'm just clarifying what I said in my original post.

EDIT: One source is The Far Orbit Project. That's the first I though of off the top of my head. It specifies the need to bring "blaster gas" up from the hold to the guns in order for them to work. "Blaster gas" is just tibanna.
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Re: Resource War

Post by Esquire » 2017-05-29 09:15pm

That's not a canon source; per Wookie it's from 1998. As far as I'm aware - though my command of the New EU is very lacking - there's nothing current which suggests Tibanna gas is particularly hard to find, or even particularly important. Besides, any number of volatile gases might well fulfill the same role.

Anyway, hypermatter is still the clear choice: unparalleled strategic speed is a war-winner even if the other two have to be replaced with local alternatives.
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Re: Resource War

Post by KraytKing » 2017-05-30 09:55am

Under normal circumstances, absolutely. But you only have five warships. Would the speed and range offset your enormous disadvantage in firepower? While your weapons would be far superior to any individual ship, you would certainly be outgunned by an entire fleet. Would the speed offset this?

As for canonicity, this is going off of Legends. Far Orbit used to be canon, that's good enough for me.
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Re: Resource War

Post by Lord Revan » 2017-05-30 10:37am

I dunno about tibanna but IIRC at least in legendaries what made bacta valued over kolto (similar but more powerful substance found in Manaan) was that you could sythesize Bacta but not kolto, while kolto might be something that probably doesn't exist in current canon, the fact you can make synthetic bacta could be, so even if the sythetic stuff isn't as potentent as "natural" bacta it's still better then nothing. (though obviously you'd need power to make things).
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Re: Resource War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2017-05-30 12:14pm

KraytKing wrote:Under normal circumstances, absolutely. But you only have five warships. Would the speed and range offset your enormous disadvantage in firepower? While your weapons would be far superior to any individual ship, you would certainly be outgunned by an entire fleet. Would the speed offset this?
Yeah, the hyperdrive speed helps, because you can use it to arrive, hit a target and withdraw before the enemy fleet arrives - or if it does arrive, withdraw and hit another target while the much slower enemy fleet tries to catch up.
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Re: Resource War

Post by Crazedwraith » 2017-05-30 12:17pm

Are we assuming you can still move FTL without hypermatter?

Because the option of starting in a wormhole in the middle of nowhere without any ftl is clearly a non-starter.
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Re: Resource War

Post by Elheru Aran » 2017-05-30 12:27pm

Frankly, if all the ISD's could do was throw rocks, hyperdrive would still win their fights for them because guess what? No planetary shields in Trek (as far as I recall). They can literally zoom into close range of a planet, drop a few asteroids into unstable orbits, and hyper away, soaking up whatever defense fire they're taking with their neutronium hulls. Scratch one planet, and Starfleet (or the Klingons, Romulans, whatever) couldn't catch them.
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Re: Resource War

Post by Esquire » 2017-05-30 12:42pm

KraytKing wrote:Under normal circumstances, absolutely. But you only have five warships. Would the speed and range offset your enormous disadvantage in firepower? While your weapons would be far superior to any individual ship, you would certainly be outgunned by an entire fleet. Would the speed offset this?
Yes, and there a) isn't any sort of firepower disadvantage at first, and b) even once the Tibanna gas runs out, a mile-long ISD (let alone Executor) with shields still operating at SW levels and its weapons replaced with phasers or whatever is still a fleet-killer. Besides, how many times has Enterprise been the only ship in the Sol system? How difficult do you think it would be to draw off what space-based forces happen to be present over any major world with a few ships, then use one or two to slag major defensive facilitates, infrastructure, etc. from orbit?
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Re: Resource War

Post by Abacus » 2017-05-30 01:09pm

Funnily enough, I'm not even sure they quite *need* hypermatter -- in the sense that they can't find it within the ST universe.

According to "Death Star", written by Michael Reaves and Steve Perry, and published on October 16, 2007 by Del Rey, hypermatter is "tachyonic matter that existed in hyperspace." Meaning that, technically, the Death Squadron are the only ones who know hyperspace exists and are the only ones with engines capable of exploiting it. "When constrained by realspace, charged tachyon were annihilated as they accelerated to infinite speed within a reactor. The hyperdrive adjusted the faster-than-light hypermatter particles to allow a ship to jump to light-speed without changing its complex mass and energy."

It can be argued that it's possible for the science officers and material engineers aboard the ships of Death Squadron to "charge" such matter, thereby refining and creating their own supply at need. It's likely that they'd need to create a bastardized system, maybe using local technology, to do so. By sheer amount needed, they'd likely only be able to create a limited amount at a limited pace; so Death Squadron would be limited in how far it could operate, or for how long -- until they'd need to stop and refine another batch of hypermatter.

Now that is according to the older EU.


According to the newer, actual Canon material, hypermatter is much easier to get at and create (imho). "The main materials of hypermatter could be formed when solar radiation came into contact with the core of a planet, as was the case in the Redhurne system." (source "Battlefront: Twilight Company").

"The inner planets of the Redhurne system cracked open, exposing their cores to the toxic rays of the Redhurne star, which transmuted the cores into exotic new materials that could be used as the building blocks for hypermatter. These materials were collected from the planetary cores by mining droid for the Galactic Empire."

This is perhaps even easier than the old EU, in terms of getting raw materials for for creating hypermatter. Cracking the crust of a planet and exposing bits of its core is a relatively easy feat for a single ISD -- let along all of Death Squadron combined. They have enough materials on hand that they could jury-rig some makeshift mining droids to pick up what materials they need after cracking an "egg" and harvesting the necessary "building blocks of hypermatter".



-----


Ergo, hypermatter isn't necessarily going to be impossible to come by, even in a "new" galaxy.

I also reinforce the idea that tibanna isn't necessary to the big guns on the ISDs or Executor. Not to mention the silliness in the idea that, as per the current canon, tibanna gas can only be found in a single location in the galaxy (Bespin). That's ridiculous on a heretofore unseen level, by any stretch of the imagination.

Also, since as has been said, bacta *can* be synthesized. It'd be fairly easy enough to use their current stock of bacta as a base to create more synthesized products. That and the local medical technology is equal or better in some cases, so can be easily taken.
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Re: Resource War

Post by KraytKing » 2017-05-30 01:40pm

Well then. You learn something new every day. Apparently, Twilight Company was worse than I remembered. And seriously, the explanation in Death Star is even worse. I figured hypermatter was created with some exotic material in a particle accelerator or something.
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Re: Resource War

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2017-05-30 08:20pm

Hypermatter.

Bacta is useful, but replaceable. Federation medical tech. is probably superior to Imperial in many ways, and the Federation is hardly the most technologically advanced faction in its galaxy, even leaving aside the maybe-technological super-beings like the Q (I would theorize that this possibly due at least partly to the ease of using Bacta, actually- its become a crutch which substitutes for actually developing medical science further).

Tibanna gas... as others have said, there are other options for weapons. Even adopting local weaponry would still leave them at an advantage in firepower/vs. armor and shielding, given everything else they have, not to mention the mobility advantage of hyperdrives. Also, not all Imperial weapons run on Tibanna gas.

This leaves aside the possibility of replicating either, as well. Or maybe even genetically engineering a source of bacta?
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Re: Resource War

Post by The Romulan Republic » 2017-05-30 08:26pm

Esquire wrote:
KraytKing wrote:Under normal circumstances, absolutely. But you only have five warships. Would the speed and range offset your enormous disadvantage in firepower? While your weapons would be far superior to any individual ship, you would certainly be outgunned by an entire fleet. Would the speed offset this?
Yes, and there a) isn't any sort of firepower disadvantage at first, and b) even once the Tibanna gas runs out, a mile-long ISD (let alone Executor) with shields still operating at SW levels and its weapons replaced with phasers or whatever is still a fleet-killer. Besides, how many times has Enterprise been the only ship in the Sol system? How difficult do you think it would be to draw off what space-based forces happen to be present over any major world with a few ships, then use one or two to slag major defensive facilitates, infrastructure, etc. from orbit?
Do keep in mind, though, that conquering the galaxy entails fighting much stronger opponents, militarily, than the Federation (the Federation's strength is largely regional, and based primarily in its science and diplomacy, not direct armed force).

A Star Destroyer reduced to Federation-level weapons might well go down to the Borg or Dominion (or Species 8472) by shear attrition, particularly if they adopt ramming tactics.

Still, the choice here is rather obvious.
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Re: Resource War

Post by Q99 » 2017-05-31 05:12am

Elheru Aran wrote:Frankly, if all the ISD's could do was throw rocks, hyperdrive would still win their fights for them because guess what? No planetary shields in Trek (as far as I recall).
Nah, there's shields. In the episode Gambit, a planet-based science station on Calder II has shields.

Also while the shields weren't specifically mentioned, Starfleet HQ did survive orbital bombardment from an attack fleet sent by the Breen. It caused damage, but trifling compared to what we've seen ships do, and the event itself was offscreen so shielding is pretty much the only thing that makes sense.

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Re: Resource War

Post by Simon_Jester » 2017-05-31 08:30am

Yeah.

More generally, the Klingons and Cardassians and so on aren't especially kindly species. And we don't have reason to believe they're too stupid to think of things like "lol just bombard their planets from space." If it were that easy, if key Federation installations really were utterly defenseless against attack from space on a regular basis, then

See, the problem here has to do with James Blish's concept of an 'idiot plot.' A first-order idiot plot is one that holds together only because the protagonists are idiots. If they behaved in non-idiotic ways, the conflicts within the story would be easily resolved and there wouldn't be a story.

...

Damon Knight extended this concept to the 'second-order idiot plot,' one that works only if literally everyone is an idiot, wherein entire societies fall apart as soon as someone with a three-digit IQ examines them for more than five minutes at a stretch.

One of the common "Trek-sniping" behaviors I've observed is to be very quick to assume that Star Trek as a whole is a second-order idiot plot, due to isolated instances of someone doing something with apparent ease.

Purely hypothetical examples of these arguments might run like: A group of shapeshifters pulled off some shenanigans that one time, so the Klingons must have no internal security against spies! The Cardassians were unable to stop an enemy scout from observing XYZ, so they must not even be trying to stop anyone from infiltrating their space! A lot of Star Trek episodes revolve around the Enterprise being "the only ship in range," so the Federation must only have like six spaceships!

The problem is that we routinely see ample evidence of non-idiocy in other respects. Klingons may be detecting spies just fine in other episodes. Cardassian patrols may be catching enemy scouts in other episodes, or at least coming close to doing it. There may be plenty of episodes where we see hundreds or even thousands of Federation ships gathered together.

...

This undermines the idea of Star Trek as a 'second order' idiot plot. There may well be key examples of 'first order' idiot plots, where the protagonists (or antagonists) fail in unusual ways. Where they make grievous tactical blunders and so on... But that doesn't mean these plots represent the normal status quo. It's unreasonable to just start with the assumption that everyone in Star Trek is an idiot, so that easily exploitable weaknesses in any given Trek nation's defenses will go un-exploited until an outside-context-problem faction shows up to take advantage of them.

If key Federation bases really are normally defenseless against bombardment, the Klingons or Cardassians are smart and ruthless enough that you'd expect them to take advantage. If the Federation really has no internal security against hacking, the Romulans are sneaky enough to exploit that. And so on.

While I'm sure there are ample ways for any given faction with outside-context capabilities to do a number on Star Trek's factions, they're not going to be obvious simple things that anyone smarter than a Pakled could do in-universe.
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Re: Resource War

Post by Lord Revan » 2017-05-31 02:49pm

Simon_Jester wrote:Yeah.

More generally, the Klingons and Cardassians and so on aren't especially kindly species. And we don't have reason to believe they're too stupid to think of things like "lol just bombard their planets from space." If it were that easy, if key Federation installations really were utterly defenseless against attack from space on a regular basis, then

See, the problem here has to do with James Blish's concept of an 'idiot plot.' A first-order idiot plot is one that holds together only because the protagonists are idiots. If they behaved in non-idiotic ways, the conflicts within the story would be easily resolved and there wouldn't be a story.

...

Damon Knight extended this concept to the 'second-order idiot plot,' one that works only if literally everyone is an idiot, wherein entire societies fall apart as soon as someone with a three-digit IQ examines them for more than five minutes at a stretch.

One of the common "Trek-sniping" behaviors I've observed is to be very quick to assume that Star Trek as a whole is a second-order idiot plot, due to isolated instances of someone doing something with apparent ease.

Purely hypothetical examples of these arguments might run like: A group of shapeshifters pulled off some shenanigans that one time, so the Klingons must have no internal security against spies! The Cardassians were unable to stop an enemy scout from observing XYZ, so they must not even be trying to stop anyone from infiltrating their space! A lot of Star Trek episodes revolve around the Enterprise being "the only ship in range," so the Federation must only have like six spaceships!

The problem is that we routinely see ample evidence of non-idiocy in other respects. Klingons may be detecting spies just fine in other episodes. Cardassian patrols may be catching enemy scouts in other episodes, or at least coming close to doing it. There may be plenty of episodes where we see hundreds or even thousands of Federation ships gathered together.

...

This undermines the idea of Star Trek as a 'second order' idiot plot. There may well be key examples of 'first order' idiot plots, where the protagonists (or antagonists) fail in unusual ways. Where they make grievous tactical blunders and so on... But that doesn't mean these plots represent the normal status quo. It's unreasonable to just start with the assumption that everyone in Star Trek is an idiot, so that easily exploitable weaknesses in any given Trek nation's defenses will go un-exploited until an outside-context-problem faction shows up to take advantage of them.

If key Federation bases really are normally defenseless against bombardment, the Klingons or Cardassians are smart and ruthless enough that you'd expect them to take advantage. If the Federation really has no internal security against hacking, the Romulans are sneaky enough to exploit that. And so on.

While I'm sure there are ample ways for any given faction with outside-context capabilities to do a number on Star Trek's factions, they're not going to be obvious simple things that anyone smarter than a Pakled could do in-universe.
to expand on this, when you think you've discovered a potential simple and easy to figure out "silver bullet" in how a certain piece of tech works, only when all other realistic are counted for and rejected should you assume that this "silver bullet" isn't used "because they're too stupid".

Lets take warp strafing as an example, there's enough evidence to suggest that it's at least theoretically possible but on the other hand that DS9 being essentially immobile it would be a prime target for warp strafing, yet it was never even suggested to use warp strafing against DS9 and the fact that DS9 has more then a token defense grid. Suggests there's something we don't know what but something that makes warp strafing less effective then it might seem at first glance, after all we shouldn't assume everyone in the universe is too stupid to figure out that using a tactic that has for all intents and purposes certainty of victory might be useful.
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Re: Resource War

Post by texanmarauder » 2017-12-12 12:13am

while much of this discussion seems to be based on the old EU, I might point something out. there is a verteron array on mars capable of pinpoint strikes on earth. it was able to target and hit the NX enterprise at only 2% of its power and did considerable damage. at full power, it could easily one shot a star destroyer and do so from millions of km away. they had that kind of tech in the 22nd century.

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Re: Resource War

Post by Solauren » 2017-12-12 06:52am

Hypermatter

I can capture alien ships, and retrofit their weapons onto my ships. (Or enslave there population and do the same thing, either way....)

So, instead of 60 turbolasers using Tibanna gas, I have 60 Phaser Cannons, each as powerful as the Enterprise-D's 'Deflector' Cannon from Best of Both Worlds. Either way, I'm still popping enemy starships.

Also, Star Trek medical tech is advanced enough Bacta shouldn't be a massive issue.
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Re: Resource War

Post by texanmarauder » 2017-12-12 11:13am

Solauren wrote:
2017-12-12 06:52am
So, instead of 60 turbolasers using Tibanna gas, I have 60 Phaser Cannons, each as powerful as the Enterprise-D's 'Deflector' Cannon from Best of Both Worlds. Either way, I'm still popping enemy starships.
I assume you are still using the old EU biggaton numbers?

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