The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

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fnord
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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2018-09-08 01:02am

What is it with you and commas? Did one savage you in a tight spot?

Anyway, here's some suggested corrections:
His small force consisted of his new ship the Pillar of Autumn, ten destroyers including his former command the Iroquois and twenty frigates were among the most advanced the UNSC Navy had to offer. They had been improved above and beyond the now-standard upgrades given to the other ships – the used neutrino-ion generators as power sources for their improved shields, they mounted new Tollan-designed ion cannons that had proven very effective against the Covenant shields and sported uprated sublight drives and FTL systems, a set of upgrades that perfectly fitted their role as long-distance raiders.
His small force consisted of his new ship the Pillar of Autumn, ten destroyers including his former command the Iroquois and twenty frigates were among the most advanced the UNSC Navy had to offer. They had been improved above and beyond the now-standard upgrades given to the other ships – neutrino-ion generators powered their improved shields, new Tollan-designed ion cannons that had proven very effective against the Covenant shields alongside uprated sublight drives and FTL systems, a set of upgrades that perfectly fitted their role as long-distance raiders.
but they were stoic enough to make solid granite envious so only the most perceptive of people
but they were stoic enough to make solid granite envious, so only the most perceptive of people
He’d heard rumours of other scouts heading for one of those Halo rings and a fleet heading straight for Earth and that scared the Captain. As brutal as the last weeks had been for the UNSC the prospect of a full-scale Covenant assault on Reach or Earth was enough to freeze the blood of any officer or enlisted who contemplated it. Both worlds had powerful defences but fixed defences alone could not stop a determined attack.
He’d heard rumours of other scouts heading for one of those Halo rings and a fleet heading straight for Earth - that scared the Captain. As brutal as the last weeks had been for the UNSC, the prospect of a full-scale Covenant assault on Reach or Earth was enough to freeze the blood of any officer or enlisted who contemplated it. Both worlds had powerful defences, but fixed defences alone could not stop a determined attack.
had transferred to the heavy cruiser turned to Keyes
had transferred to the heavy cruiser, turned to Keyes
dropped out of slipspace eight-eight thousand kilometres
dropped out of slipspace eighty-eight thousand kilometres
Cortana had borrowed a tactic from their Terran allies and plotted the jumps to put the UNSC ships in a hemisphere formation centred on the two corvettes, giving every ship clear lines of fire.
Cortana had borrowed a tactic from their Terran allies - plotting the jumps to put the UNSC ships in a hemisphere formation centred on the two corvettes, giving every ship clear lines of fire.
On each of the thirty frigates and destroyers four ion cannons locked on the required bearing and opened fire. Another thirty guns mounted on the Pillar of Autumn joined in the salvo – their firing solution was loose enough to not guarantee first-round hits so the AI’s had opted for blanket mass fire
On each of the thirty frigates and destroyers, four ion cannons locked on the required bearing and opened fire. Another thirty guns mounted on the Pillar of Autumn joined in the salvo – their firing solution was loose enough to not guarantee first-round hits so the AIs had opted for blanket mass fire
The AI’s had performed superbly
The AIs had performed superbly
heading for the scout’s last known position
heading for the scouts' last known position
going into action as an independent force rather than an attachment
going into action as an independent force, rather than an attachment
as the enemy ship appeared she would take the
as the enemy ship appeared, she would take the
The slipspace distortion had placed great strain upon the main engines, forcing them to travel on to the target world at a slower speed than normal. Worse, while his ship’s shields had not been compromised the generators
The slipspace distortion had placed great strain upon the main engines, forcing them to travel on to the target world slower than normal. Worse, while his ship’s shields had not been compromised, the generators
Surely if they really had sided with the humans they would have brought their entire fleet to aide them
Surely, if they really had sided with the humans, they would have brought their entire fleet to aid them
The slipspace rupture appeared and the Solemn Penance was shot out into realspace two hundred thousand kilometres from Earth. Regret instantly moved over to the sensor displays and was stunned at what he saw. This planet was clearly held by the humans, and had more powerful defences than anything he had ever seen short of High Charity itself.
The slipspace rupture appeared, spitting the Solemn Penance out into realspace two hundred thousand kilometres from Earth. Regret instantly moved over to the sensor displays and was stunned at what he saw. This planet was clearly held by the humans, and had more powerful defences than anything he had ever seen, short of High Charity itself.
Elsewhere in the system Regret could see major enemy positions
Elsewhere in the system, Regret could see major enemy positions
The weapon mount was torn asunder and worse still the massive capacitor banks
The weapon mount was torn asunder and, worse still, the massive capacitor banks
white light that gored out a hundred-metre crater
white light that gouged out a hundred-metre crater
What remained of the once-mighty Assault Carrier, and the High Prophet of Regret vanished in twenty flares of nuclear fire.
What remained of the once-mighty Assault Carrier, and the High Prophet of Regret, vanished in twenty flares of nuclear fire.
A mad person thinks there's a gateway to hell in his basement. A mad genius builds one and turns it on. - CaptainChewbacca

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-08 07:56am

One day it's too many commas, then not enough. Bah humbug.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2018-09-09 12:37am

I admit, it's partly self-interest. The more underbrush I rumble to get cleaned up here, the less there'll be in the final-approach version.
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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by B5B7 » 2018-09-09 02:05am

Regret was arrogant to proceed on this mission without escorts for his ship.
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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-09 06:32am

B5B7 wrote:
2018-09-09 02:05am
Regret was arrogant to proceed on this mission without escorts for his ship.
Yes he was. But then he was also arrogant to go to a planet in known human space (even if it wasn't a known human world) with only sixteen ships, when they've been hearing for two weeks how the humans are routinely killing sixty-plus ships every engagement. The Hierarchs are arrogant and deluded sods, this should not be a surprise. They think they're going to fire the Halo Array and ascend to become Gods - that mindset doesn't lend itself to humility.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Sky Captain » 2018-09-09 03:08pm

Yeah nothing short of full scale assault fleet would have survived against Earth defenses. If Regret was smarter he could have exited FTL in deep interplanetary space and retreated after realizing Earth is human homeworld.

Regarding the battle it seems Covenant ships are quite underpowered for their size and mass. Assault carrier is about 5 km long and quite bulky. It probably outmassed Tau`ri battlegroup by factor of 20 or more. A Warstar is outmassed by factor of 5 perhaps yet it could take out 2 Assault carriers, one with superlaser other with massed fire from secondary weapons or both with superlaser firing in two bursts. 2 Warstars could wipe out a supercarrier despite being outmassed by factor of 100 maybe. Even Forerunner Keyship is only marginally more powerful than Nemesis and probably equal or a bit lesser to Jupiter despite being much larger.
If Terrans built a battleship on a scale of a Supercarrier it could tear through entire Covenant fleets with little effort.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-09 03:20pm

You're quite correct, Covenant ships are underpowered for their size compared to Terran ships. But Assault and Supercarriers are carriers, it's hardly surprising they're outgunned ton-for-ton by dedicated warships. Bringing up the Warstars and their superlasers is a bit of a misnomer though, those are vastly overpowered for their size, and for good reason.

The Covenant are, in my canon, essentially the Haloverse version of the Goa'uld - a species that's been top dog for a long time and their technology is derived from one of the Alliance of Four Great Races. They've had millennia of superiority and even when they've had civil wars they were fighting the same ships as their own.

They aren't innovative but up until the last month it hasn't been an issue, the UNSC ships needed 3 to 1 odds to win and would lose 2 of those ships doing it. It's rather like the Wraith in that regard.

And yeah, a Supercarrier-sized Terran battleship is....scary. I would imagine it'd have turret-mounted superlasers and probably something called an uberlaser that actually could crack planets.

Terran and Tau'ri ships have superior technology and better power generation, allowing them to punch well above their weight.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2018-09-09 04:16pm

So in rough dakka terms, a Terran supercarrier-sized battlewagon would be to a warstar as a warstar is to a battlestar? (I shudder to think of the resource cost needed to build an example).

How big is the technological gap between the Terrans and prehistoric Haloverse humaniti?
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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-09 04:34pm

Actually, I think a supercarrier-sized Terran battlewagon would be to a Warstar what a Warstar is to a destroyer.

The Kobolians are probably on a par technologically with Haloverse ancient humanity, but not on the same scale at this point.

The Kobolians may need to build such a ship for Book III though :D
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by InsaneTD » 2018-09-10 01:24am

Considering the number of fighters each side has, there's been a real lack of fighter combat so far.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-10 07:18am

You make a good point, and fighter combat will feature more in the battle for Reach, but since the Alliance entry into the war the battles have been shirt enough that they haven't had time to deploy fighters.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Natzo » 2018-09-10 11:38pm

Fighter combat is not that important on the Haloverse due to the level of weapons and defenses. Shields and lasers make them much easier to shoot down, so things like Longswords are used as missile launchers if I recall correctly.

The Kobollians might have the tech but they only have 1 planet, already pushed a lot to get such powerful ships in such a short time. It would be kind of ridiculous if suddenly they could build something like supercarrier. Just building a shipyard would be a challenge. Then getting the crew to pilot such a thing. Would be better to build more Warstars, but aren't they already stretched thin? I think they are already... mary sue-ish enough already.

At least now both the Terrans and the Tau'ri have experience fighting a well equipped and well trained military instead of the snakes and the Wraith. This should lead them to improvements on both ships.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-13 05:52pm

You're quite right, building a supercarrier-sized vessel is beyond them at the moment. Book 1 made frequent mention of the fact that the 13 Battlestars, 1 Warstar and escort groups was the maximum they could sustain in terms of both cost, resources and manpower (plus a few attachments, like the Explorers and the Yardship Safe Harbour.

This is not unreasonable I think - consider that the pre-fall Colonial Fleet was stated to be 120 Battlestars (well, Adama tells Starbuck they've lost 30 Battlestars in the opening attack and she says "that's a quarter of the Fleet.") spread over 12 worlds, all with a lower tech base than Terra and with a lower average population (total Colonial population was canonically in the 30 billion range I think) - Terra has 5 billion inhabitants and a strong resource base and industry.

So yeah, they're stretched at the moment but that is largely due to a peacetime mentality by the population and the Senate and the various commitments they have to the Alliance - running deterrence patrols against the Lucian Alliance, defending the Ark, helping defend Earth and the Atlantis Expedition, patrolling the former Twelve Colonies and defending Terra. Consider that in the last 3 years the only capital ship they built was Phoenix and that was to replace combat losses. They built the cruisers as well, along with more destroyers but Terran shipbuilding/spacebourne construction has mostly been for the boom in civilian shipping and the massive expansion of Olympus Base and building Atlantis Base, Elysium Base, Midway Base and Sentinel Base.

Whether they would be better building a supercarrier-scale battleship or more Warstars is an open question I think. Certainly they're a long way off doing either - the Jupiter is coming along next chapter but that's it for the moment. I meant the "they might need one" comment as being for Book III, which would be another 3-5 years along in the timeline - my plan for which is firming up nicely by the way - and the fact that they might need such a vessel doesn't mean they will. I imagine if they needed something more powerful they would look at building warship-scale Assault Guns - basically a Warstar-scale superlaser and nothing else.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2018-09-15 10:11am

I'd personally plump for more Warstars - a single ship, no matter its level of wtfpwnage (eg, aforementioned planetbuster), can only be in one place at once, Multiple Warstars can disperse or congregate as the situation demands.

Or are you tracking to set up a Special Arm of the TCN, where they keep the astropolitical WMD (such as said planetbuster)?
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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-15 12:55pm

A special branch of the TCN for superweapons is indeed an interesting idea, I'll make a note. But for now, enjoy:

Commissioning
Styx Base, Outer Terran System
Two Days Later


It was changed times indeed for Styx Base, the rather grandiose name for what was in essence a single huge drydock facility. It had been built in secret years before, shortly after the Battlestar Warspite first encountered the Terrans. While the Terran-built Battlestars had been constructed in public view at Olympus Base, Styx Base had been used to build the massive Warstar Nemesis, the Commonwealth Navy’s ace in the hole. Once the frantic construction was done however there was little for the crew to do apart from patch up the minor damage the ship had taken in Pegasus three years ago.

A year ago however the Admiralty had approached the Senate with the possibility of constructing a second Warstar, one even more advanced than the first. After considerable debate (and the spike in public opinion following the Nemesis participating in the monthly Fleet Day event) the Senate had agreed and the funding bill was passed. With no imminent threat however the design proceeded at a more leisurely pace, with the joint laboratories run by Professor Bazelgette and General Carter contributing heavily to the plans and ideas of just what this new Warstar should be.

Seven months earlier the design had been finalised and construction had begun, the first metal being cut by Presidents Matthews and Roslin at a joint ceremony. With no other capital ships building at Olympus Base and no need for the secrecy surrounding the construction of Nemesis, a much larger workforce could be used – and the dockyard unions were delighted at the continued business for their members.

A month ago the last of the armour panels had been installed and the ship, as-yet unnamed, was declared complete and handed over to her first crew for trials and a shakedown cruise. Now, while most of the Fleet was off fighting in another universe and the rigours of wartime were once more upon them, the second Warstar was ready to be commissioned.

The mighty vessel bore a strong resemblance to the Nemesis, but this was not merely a close copy. This was a second-generation Warstar, intended to be an improvement in every way over the first ship. The design teams had performed brilliantly, integrating technology and ideas from the Terrans, the Colonials, the Asgard, the Ancients and even the Tau’ri seamlessly into one massively powerful hull.

The ship’s overall profile was the same as that of her older half-sister: the hexagonal central hull; the four huge flight pods attached in a flattened “x” shape; the drive section expanding out from the centre section; the bow section doing the same, complete with the four talon-like protrusions that marked this ship as definitely being of the Warstar lineage, rather than merely a Battlestar.

The profile may have been the same but little else was. She was a full six hundred metres longer than the Nemesis, and a hundred metres broader and taller. Her hull stretched a full forty-two hundred metres from the tips of the forward weapon mounts to the massive sublight drives at the stern. Within this voluminous hull was packed more firepower than had ever put to space before, though it was very different from the original Warstar.

For one thing, the new ship carried no megalasers at all. The four talons at the bows instead each held a pair of the Ancient Satellite Weapons, the same design that armed the defensive stations over Terra, Earth and Atlantis giving the ship’s forward batteries a much-improved range. What had been the dorsal and ventral megalaser mounts had been replaced with a new weapons system, a product of the joint research and development labs: huge coilguns capable of launching ten-tonne slugs at the enemy at three thousand kilometres per second; each slug would impact with the force of a ten-megaton nuclear weapon.. The raised dorsal and ventral ridges each carried five heavy turrets, each of those mounted two of these monster coilguns, officially known as Hypervelocity Guns.

The ship’s secondary weapons were likewise expanded, this vessel sported three hundred and sixty turbolaser turrets as well as forty twin plasma-beam turrets, the same ones that adorned the new HMS Dreadnought. They acted as an intermediate battery, helping to deal with threats on the ship’s flanks that could not be easily targeted by the spinal batteries or the hypervelocity gun turrets. Three thousand point-defence mounts provided protection against small craft and one hundred and twenty heavy missile tubes on the flanks of the bow section added yet another heavy punch to the ship’s arsenal.

The flight pods were extended along with the rest of the central hull and were each supported by six pylons instead of five. The expanded flight-deck facilities allowed for a substantial increase in the ship’s air wing – eight hundred Cobra fighters, one hundred and twenty Scythe gunships and one hundred and twenty Scimitar bombers allowed the new Warstar to dominate the skies of any world she chose. The interior hospital facilities and Marine barracks were equivalent to those on the Nemesis, meaning the ship could handle nearly a thousand serious cases at any given time and deploy a full Division of Marines to a planet’s surface.

But it was the ship’s main weapon system that showed the greatest divergence from the ship’s predecessor. The design teams had tried all manner of computer simulations to try and improve on the massive superlaser mounted on the Nemesis, only to run into a problem of diminishing returns: simply making the weapon bigger did not significantly increase the damage potential or rate of fire and many officers argued the huge weapon was overpowered anyway. So the designers had gone in the opposite direction, abandoning the design of the original superlaser and looking at the lightweight version mounted on the Battlestar Phoenix. With a full-power shot equivalent to a five hundred gigaton nuclear weapon and a rapid-fire mode with a fifth of that power the gun had ample ship-killing potential.

The new Warstar didn’t mount just one though. Four of these deadly weapons occupied the central spinal mounting, the volume saved from using the smaller design (and the larger hull) was given over to greatly expanded cooling systems and capacitors, allowing each gun to fire five low-power shots in quick succession. There had been some thought given to having the entire weapon mount rotate in a fashion similar to Tau’ri Gatling guns to keep each beam on target but this had been dismissed as both impractical and unnecessary – another improvement on the Nemesis design were both more numerous and more powerful manoeuvring thrusters, making it much easier to bring this awesome weapon to bear.

The new Warstar has in the process of being commissioned into the Commonwealth Navy, and as such she would finally be give her name, hull number and motto – she was the Warstar Jupiter, WS-02, named for the being in the Terran and Colonial Pantheon who had been a God even to the Gods; the First Being, the Great One, the Bringer of Light Himself. Her motto, emblazoned in fifty-foot letters underneath the ship’s crest on the upper hull of the bow section was Vincit Tenebris Lux – “Light Conquers Darkness.” She would do what the mythical Jupiter had done and bring light to a dark universe.

For the moment the Jupiter would fight alone. There were no spare cruisers or destroyers to form an escort group for the mammoth ship, something that had been known during the design phase and factored into the heavier armament and the inclusion of the plasma beam cannons as an intermediate battery. Another design element included as a result of this decision was the expanded number of third-generation FTL drives and Asgard-designed computer systems to handle jump plotting, the new Warstar would be able to leap around any putative battlefield, entering and leaving combat on her own terms. The only vessels in either universe believed to be a match for this monster were the Covenant Supercarriers and the Forerunner Keyship – nothing else could hope to defeat the Jupiter, not even the Nemesis.

There was another similarity to her older half-sister however. The Jupiter would be thrown into combat very soon as every ship would be needed to defend against a full-scale Covenant assault on Reach or Earth. In Fleet Ops aboard the newly-named vessel stood her master, Commodore Brian Fischer, who had been temporarily relieved of his command of the Intrepid and her Battle Group to take over the Jupiter. In strictly technical terms it was at best a sideways promotion – command of a Battle Group was technically a higher-ranked position than a mere Commanding Officer posting. But when that ship command posting was for the meanest battlewagon in this universe there was a certain prestige to the job that outweighed the lateral movement on the rank chart.

Across from him stood the ship’s XO, Commodore Jack Ryan, a man who had taken a similar sideways jump, moving from commanding Atlantis Base to handling the XO duties for the Jupiter. This was in no way a poor reflection on Ryan’s career prospects, rather that the Admiralty wanted the most capable officers available in place on the new ship for when it, inevitably, would have to deploy to the other universe. Admiral Stewart and Commodore Garrett had been considered, but as they were the leaders of Second Fleet, the force handling the defence commitments of the TCN across two galaxies they could not be spared. So Fischer, also known as Overwatch and Ryan, also called Swordsman, would be the ones to wield the newest weapon in Terra’s considerable arsenal.

At present the Jupiter was underway from Styx Base, heading for Terra and Olympus Base where she would embark her Air Wing and then she would depart for the Furling Beacon and the other universe. The wounded Battlestar Illustrious was at this moment traversing the interuniversal portal before beginning the slow crawl to Terra for repairs. The Alliance Forces needed reinforcements while the wounded ship was restored to duty (alongside the mostly-repaired Battlestar Indomitable) and as no Battle Groups could be spared from Second Fleet, the Jupiter was the ship being sent.

The Warstar Jupiter would join her older sister in standing against evil and she would conquer the darkness. There was no other option.

Covenant Supercarrier Long Night of Solace,
In orbit of Joyous Exultation,
Ninth Age of Reclamation


This was a very secret meeting. The flagships of every Supreme Commander currently engaging the human worlds was gathered here in this out-of-the-way star system to decide on the next phase of the offensive. Simply assaulting human worlds was proving a less than optimum strategy as the strong groups of human attack vessels were always able to respond in short order, appearing from nowhere and firing off massive salvos from their main cannons that were bleeding the Covenant Navy badly.

So the Imperial Admiral, the overall commander of the Covenant Navy had called his Supreme Commanders together with their command ships. This meant the forces gathered over this world were very strange in their disposition – only sixteen ships were present but they were all Supercarriers, making it the single most deadly collection of firepower the Covenant had ever seen. In the meeting room aboard the Long Night of Solace Imperial Admiral Xytan Wattinree spoke to his immediate subordinates.

“This general offensive the Hierarchs ordered is not proving effective. Whatever new technology the humans have acquired they are putting it to good use, those teleporting engines allow them to keep their heavy ships concentrated in one fleet that can intercept our Fleets soon after we arrive at human worlds. They appear, fire off a huge cannonade and our ships have no option but to withdraw, especially as they are targeting the command ships first. We need to land a knockout blow on the human infrastructure or else we will be ground down in this war of attrition.”

None of the fifteen Supreme Commanders present could argue with that – the humans had even managed to kill three of their fellows and their Supercarriers, a feat thought impossible. All of them had participated in these battles, all of them had seen their Fleets take losses. All were out for blood but were intelligent enough not to let those feelings dominate their thought process. Thel Vadamee, leader of the Fleet of Righteous Vengeance on the supercarrier Ascendant Justice clicked his mandibles in agreement.

“I agree with you Admiral but we do not know where the human infrastructure is concentrated. We’ve been launching ourselves at any system with habitable worlds in the recent days hoping they are human worlds. For every planet we’ve attacked three more turned out to be false leads. Without more detailed reconnaissance we cannot pick targets correctly, but the Hierarchs will not allow us to sit back and wait for those reconnaissance efforts to bear fruit.”

Wattinree nodded. “You are quite correct Thel. However, thanks to the data received from the Reclamation Group, we now have the location of a major human world, one with what are clearly human shipyards in orbit – shipyards that hold our captured vessel Legendary Valour. The Prophet of Restriction is already moving to investigate this world with his force. We will follow in massive strength and overwhelm the surviving defenders if they manage to defeat the Prophet’s forces. The Reclamation Group has also informed the Hierarchs that they have located not one but two of the Halo Rings – the Hierarchs have ordered at least three Fleets be detached to investigate and occupy those rings until High Charity can arrive to begin the Great Journey.”

Supreme Commander Nerak Mastanee nodded. “Occupying both of those Rings and assaulting this human shipyard will require much of our strength, we would have to abandon the general offensive.” The others all agreed with that point, the offensive was not remotely popular among the Sanghelli elite.

Wattinree grinned fiercely. “Indeed we shall, but we have orders from the Hierarchs that allow us this freedom. The Fleets of Homogenous Clarity, Unbroken Defiance and Eternal Faith will occupy this Ring.” He called up a hologram and indicated the nearer of the two. “The Fleets of Implacable Conviction, Celestial Wisdom and Unshaken Reverence will occupy the second Ring. All other Fleets apart from the Defence Fleet will gather at this system here” another location was highlighted, a short distance from the newly-located human shipyard “and await my order to attack. We will let the Prophet of Restriction test the waters, of course we would do nothing to steal a Prophet’s glory.” This was greeted by much clicking of mandibles in amusement.

Supreme Commander Nial Declanee spoke up. “It is known to all here but it needs to be said. This is an action bordering on treason against the Covenant. Are we ready to take this step? Depending on how Truth, Mercy and Regret interpret these actions we could be starting a civil war.”

Wattinree bowed his head in acceptance of the point. “I believe we have no other choice. Truth, Mercy and Regret are callous with the lives of us Sanghelli and the other warrior races while they sit happily on their thrones. They are intent on beginning the Great Journey and becoming Gods…and if they succeed, they will no longer need warriors to serve them.” That was an arresting thought but it was true – Gods did not need warriors.

The Imperial Admiral continued. “I believe that the Hierarchs may be a greater threat to the Covenant than the humans are. Our oath and our duty is to the Covenant above all else, not the Prophets and their Great Journey. We serve our people, not the dreams of becoming Gods. The other races will side with us apart from the Jiralhanae, those beasts know nothing more than fighting and blind obedience to the Prophet’s every word. I am not saying we turn on the Hierarchs yet, perhaps not ever, but we must be ready for them to betray us as a contingency plan.”

Thel Vadamee looked the Admiral squarely in the eye. ”What of the humans?”
Wattinree shrugged. “They are still the enemy of the Covenant, they have killed too many of our brothers, and we have burned too many of their worlds for them to ever side with us, even if they do in truth have more honour than the Hierarchs do. No, for now they are the enemy and we continue the war. Return to your ships and carry out your orders.”

With that the meeting broke up and within an hour the various Supercarriers began jumping to slipspace, returning to their Fleets and preparing to carry out their missions. Six of those Fleets were soon moving towards the two Halo Rings, while eight were heading for a position a mere dozen light-years from the human world Reach. Nearly a thousand Covenant warships would soon be descending on the planet, aiming to burn and vanquish the human military once and for all.

End of Act Three

===========

Well here we go folks. The Warstar Jupiter is one mean bitch (yes, I did consider giving her a Gatling superlaser as her main armament but couldn't justify it in-universe) and the Sanghelli leadership are questioning the Hierarchs orders and laying plans for a possible betrayal, the Great Schism is underway - not that it will stop the Sanghelli from fighting the humans of course, a three-way brawl is now a distinct possibility. Installations 04 and 05 will soon be under Covenant assault - 05 will be occupied, 04 and Guilty Spark will (reluctantly) obey Cole's orders and fight against any Covenant landing force - but with three Supercarriers as part of the occupation force the Monitor can only do so much.

We also get a better idea of who Jupiter was, something that will become important in the third book. He is the God of Gods, the First-Born.

Next we see Act Four: Reach as the assorted humans try to face up to the coming Covenant onslaught. Stay tuned!
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2018-09-15 02:18pm

6 months' elapsed external time for a 4200m battlewagon? Was there a single stop not pulled out?

I think you've slightly understated the relative thwappage of those relativistic slugs.

Per here, an object impacting at 3 km/s delivers its mass in TNT yield, varying as the square of velocity.

0.14c works out to (roughly) 42,000 km/s. Neglecting relativistic mass increase (roughly 1%), that's 14E3x velocity, for 196E6x thwappage - 196 tonnes TNT yield per kilogram. As each slug has 1E4 kg of mass, that's 196E4 tonnes of TNT yield, or 196E1 (ie, 1960) kilotonnes, or just under two megatonnes of BOOM per slug.
A mad person thinks there's a gateway to hell in his basement. A mad genius builds one and turns it on. - CaptainChewbacca

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Natzo » 2018-09-15 04:10pm

So in terms of "HP", how much punishment can each shield in a sustained barrage before collapsing?

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-15 05:50pm

Fnord: You're right, I dropped a few orders of magnitude as I was trying to do the sums using the Windows calculator on the computer at work during my lunch break - having just crunched the numbers again, the stated mass and velocity actually gives two gigatons per shot, which is waaaay over what I intended. Hmm...I'll have to run the numbers again for a more sensible impact energy and mass and a lower velocity and PM LadyTevar to edit it for me. Damnit. Incidentally, I'm deriving those numbers from the basic kinetic energy equations rather than any rules-of-thumb for hypervelocity weapons.

UNSC standard shipboard MACs fire 600 tonne slugs at 30 km/s, for ~60 kilotons per shot, while S-MACs fire 3,000 tonne slugs at 12,000 km/s for a 51 gigaton impact. The "heavy" coilgun mounts on HMS Dreadnought lob five tonne slugs at 1,500 km/s for 1.3 megatons per hit. I've re-jigged my numbers, so the Hypervelocity guns on Jupiter will fire ten tonne slugs at 3,000 km/s or 0.01c for a ~10 megaton impact. That works.

This shows the main difference between Terran and UNSC coilgun tech - the Terrans opt for higher velocity but lower-mass slugs which while more power-intensive (solved by their far superior generators) means a lot more ammo storage - and far simpler loading mechanisms needed.

On a broader note, it was 6 months elapsed time to build her (which is not that excessive given they built Nemesis in about 9 months from design phase to commissioning in secret) but they used pretty much all the available dock workers to do it - apart from the repairs to Indomitable, which only arrived about the same time the Jupiter was declared complete, there weren't any other shipbuilding projects going on, so it was an all-hands effort - and Terran shipbuilding now makes extensive use of both the plasma forges for producing the right materials and Asgard beaming systems to re-arrange those raw materials into the right components and transport them into place, a real time-saver.

Natzo: Firstly, I've seen you post some questions before but haven't said it yet, so welcome to the madhouse :D In terms of "HP" I would say the Jupiter can take about 1.5 times the damage that Nemesis can - that equates to about 1,000 gigatons worth of energy in single hits (I'd said in prior discussions that Nemesis can tank one full-power shot from the main gun on the Phoenix, so I'd set the original Warstar's shields at 600 gigatons max capacity). Sustained barrage? Ummm...probably a sustained plasma torpedoe barrage from up to a dozen CCS battlecruisers.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Natzo » 2018-09-15 09:05pm

That's cool. I discovered this story while browsing tvtropes haha. I'm surprised you haven't posted it in FF.net or AO3. I was actually thinking on writing a Mass Effect/BSG story after I'm done with my Fire Emblem fics. Not sure if continuing Scions of Kobol that I adopted, or start one pre Council.

I asked for HP because sometimes people forget that shields recharge, so they treat them more like second armor than a regenerating resource. If the damage is not sustained or heavy enough, the shield will go back 100% quickly.

How are the Tau'ri and the Asgard responding to the monster ships of the Kobollians? The Asgard might be away but I wouldn't doubt they will not be idle and let themselves become irrelevant. While the Tau'ri should learn from this war and realize the 304s are strong ships with poor endurance.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-15 09:34pm

Cross-posting this to FF.net is in the pipeline but for the moment I'm concentrating on writing the damn thing.

The Tau'ri are impressed by the Kobolian warships and appreciate the help they've been shown - they've kept up the 304 production because it's something that can be done groundside, while the big capital ships (which they are building - the Brits have Dreadnought in service, the Yanks have three supercarriers building while the Russians have a pair of heavyweight battlecruisers) but those needed something like Elysium Base to build them. They do recognise the problems with the 304's but there isn't much they can do about it, the design is just too small for long-endurance.

As for the Asgard, well they're sealed away for another 700 years of subjective time. They know of the changes and they have no intention of becoming irrelevant, they have the advantage of more time for them to ponder new designs - they aren't all genetic scientists, some are warriors and engineers using the time to dream up now ship designs. And they'll have the advantage of the reports from the Asgard minds on the Nidavellir who have been working on both Terran and UNSC ships, that's gonna be a big help when the time comes.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2018-09-16 01:15am

Blast, you were right - your original figures gave a specific yield of 196 kilotonnes per kg, not tonnes.

Will the two Warstars be grouped together as a, for want of a better term, battering ram? Or, with the Covenant general offensive underway, will they have to be split up to meet multiple parts of same?
A mad person thinks there's a gateway to hell in his basement. A mad genius builds one and turns it on. - CaptainChewbacca

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by fnord » 2018-09-16 04:18am

Do the 304s still count as battlecruisers, given the big Tau'ri ships (coming) on-line?
A mad person thinks there's a gateway to hell in his basement. A mad genius builds one and turns it on. - CaptainChewbacca

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-16 04:43am

The new Warstar will be fighting with the rest of the fleet st Reach, after that I dunno yet.

Yes the Tau'ri still call the 304s battlecruiser, it's actually a good term I think. Fast, lightly armoured but heavy weapons? Seems to fit
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Sky Captain » 2018-09-16 02:39pm

I like weapon layout on a Jupiter. It is far more flexible at engaging multiple targets with primary weapons end if needed can concentrate all superlasers on a single target. Nemesis just wasted so much energy on ships that maybe needed only few dozen gigatons of firepower to kill. Those Ancient Satellite beam weapons are no joke either, one could slice a Wraith Hive in half with one shot and Jupiter has 8 of those. Jupiter likely could kill a dozen Hives in an opening alpha strike alone and more if burst firing superlasers. That is some serious firepower. Luckily there will be no shortage of targets worth such firepower.

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Re: The 13th Tribe Book II: A Symphony of War

Post by Eternal_Freedom » 2018-09-16 03:19pm

This is what happens with 2nd generation ships compared to 1st generation ones - the Nemesis was built (originally) with purely Terran technology - the Asgard generators and beaming systems were late additions. The Jupiter is built with stuff like that from the skeleton up. And they'd had two years of combat experience in the first Warstar to learn from as well.
Baltar: "I don't want to miss a moment of the last Battlestar's destruction!"
Centurion: "Sir, I really think you should look at the other Battlestar."
Baltar: "What are you babbling about other...it's impossible!"
Centurion: "No. It is a Battlestar."

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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