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Quote of the Week: "A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within." - Will Durant, American historian (1885-1981)

Why do the Klingon not us starfighters

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StarSword
PostPosted: 2011-09-12 09:56am 

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VarrusTheEthical wrote:
On theory, in response to the OP, is perhaps that the Klingons themselves never developed the concept of a fighter? Even as a space-faring culture, Klingons still have an emphasis on hand-to-hand combat. I suspect the human concept of airpower would have been considered "dishonorable" to Klingons. Why engage in combat using a fighter jet when it was more honorable to fight with a bat'leth? I would not be surprised if Klingons only developed warships after encountering aliens who were not so keen on fighting wars by Klingon rules.

Batman wrote:
Um-Klingons have used warships since their first appearance in Trek (even the retroactive ones from ENT), and continued to do so even after the stupid 'let's use knives against guys with ray guns' tactics surfaced in the TNG/DS9 era. The 'RAR! Knives' thing seems to be exclusively infantry. Not that I know how this is supposed to translate into starship combat anyway.

I'm not sure when the Klingons developed space travel, but most of the AQ/BQ powers seem to have developed warp long before humanity did. I remember reading a passage on Memory Alpha indicating ENT's Klingons thought the Enterprise NX-01 was outdated, for instance. And we know from First Contact, etc., that the Vulcans had warp for quite a while.

Working from there, I would guess the Klingons met the Romulans or whoever a couple hundred years before Goddard launched his first rockets on Earth.
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Isolder74
PostPosted: 2011-10-11 04:05pm 

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It seems to me that since they already have the Bird of Prey the Klingons basically already have what can be a starfighter but with more capability and versatility. They can already Land on planets and don't require a large crew. They have fairly powerful weapons for their size and a fair rate of fire.

What seems to be the starfighters employed by the federation in DS9 seems to be a Federation version of the long running ship role of the Kia-of-Prey. Unless Chakotay's model was a step up in size, it seems that you can cram quite a large number of people inside the things.
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NecronLord
PostPosted: 2011-10-13 06:41pm 

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Baffalo
PostPosted: 2011-10-13 11:43pm 

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Starfighters do seem to be an idea that doesn't mesh well with Star Trek, but it does fit nicely with the idea of the Dominion War: We're so desperate we're trying everything, even disposable guns.

BoP are cheap and quick to build, and Starfleet (or Sisko) saw the advantage of having a small ship with really big guns, so they built the Defiant. Then they take the same concept one step further and built small fighters. Culturally, the Klingons would probably love fighters, because it lets individual warriors fight and die, all the glory theirs. Of course, that might also be why they don't have any fighters: every single Klingon would fly around and blow everything up or ram them to death, and without any oversight, there's nothing to stop them or control them.

While I've never seen it, I wonder if they never went smaller than the BoP because they'd lose control over the crew without someone to ride herd on them in addition to the advantages the BoP offers.
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Cowl
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 09:20am 

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The use of fighter craft could make sense if they were utilized as highly mobile torpedo launching platforms. I would suspect that torpedoes would be a lot more effective against command ships than weapons such as phasers or disruptors. The energy requirements are significantly less, and the destructive force of a single torpedo is a lot more potent. (Correct me if I'm wrong.)
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Baffalo
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 10:14am 

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Wow, forgot about this thread. Ok, first, I'm going to be sending you a PM about necro threads, so check your inbox. Second, why would you want to put a guy in a pod that's just going to fire torpedoes and then just have to return? Why not just mount the torpedoes to a disposable rack and fire them? That'd be the best way to handle that. No point in wasting lives. If you did it like that, you could literally bolt the things to the hull and eject them right before the battle for a huge torpedo barrage that would hammer the enemy before you sweep in with BoPs and Peregrine fighters.
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Cowl
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 06:20pm 

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Well for one, it would draw the fire away from the more valuable assets deployed in the military engagement. If dozens of highly maneuverable crafts - all capable of launching devastating attacks - were approaching an enemy vessel, tactical priorities would immediately shift to this incoming wave of inexpensive fighters, giving the more valuable vessels a better chance at survival.

Anyway, your solution is also a suitable alternative, as the ship-to-ship combat in the Trek franchise was in desperate need of an upgrade. Having dedicated torpedo-launching units, by way of enhancements to existing fleet units, seems like a good plan. I've yet to see a torpedo intercepted and/or destroyed by a point defense weapon in the Trek universe. Fighter craft on the other hand appear to be easily taken out.
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gigabytelord
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 09:18pm 

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Cowl wrote:
I've yet to see a torpedo intercepted and/or destroyed by a point defense weapon in the Trek universe. Fighter craft on the other hand appear to be easily taken out.


Well I'm not sure if new trek counts in this argument but we obviously see point defense being used on three separate occasions there, once at the very beginning and twice by the Enterprise.
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Batman
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 10:17pm 

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It doesn't. As there weren't any fighters in nuTrek this is obviously about oldTrek.
And the fact that fighters get taken out pretty easily might have something to do with the fact that for fighters, they tend to be rather on the bulky side, and also tend to move at the same glacial paces Trek capital ships do. I would be not inconsiderably surprised if the Peregrine weren't the approximate size of a Runabout.
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gigabytelord
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 10:46pm 

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Batman wrote:
It doesn't. As there weren't any fighters in nuTrek this is obviously about oldTrek.
And the fact that fighters get taken out pretty easily might have something to do with the fact that for fighters, they tend to be rather on the bulky side, and also tend to move at the same glacial paces Trek capital ships do. I would be not inconsiderably surprised if the Peregrine weren't the approximate size of a Runabout.


Roger, it was just an idea, but yeah I've never seen any kind of dedicated point defense used in old trek either, but then again I don't see the point to having it when your main weapons are agile enough to be used for that propose.
Then again we never see these agile weapons used to stop incoming enemy torps, so one would assume that it's either not considered important or hitting something that small is believed to be to difficult and therefore a waist of effort.
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Batman
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 10:53pm 

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Those agile weapons routinely miss ships that dwarf a modern day aircraft carrier at spitting distances (assuming they're ever fired to begin with). I think it is safe to assume that whatever renders their accuracy that atrocious would translate to them trying to shoot down incoming projectiles.
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Baffalo
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 11:31pm 

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There is a realistic reasoning to this and part of it has to do with relativistic effects and also just common sense. When you're firing a weapon, typically what's happening is you're not aiming for the exact location of where a ship is but rather where you think it will be when your own weapon arrives. Here on Earth, we call that leading the target, and it's important. However, a hunter on the ground doesn't have near the complex variables that two starships would face in actual combat.

When two starships go head to head, they could be separated by kilometers or just a few meters. However, the faster the two ships are maneuvering and the distance they're at means that when the computer tries to calculate where the enemy will be, it must anticipate where it'll be at any given moment in time. If you fired a torpedo at a ship moving in a straight line and at a constant speed from a long ways off, and it changed course while the torpedo was in flight, the torpedo will miss.

Of course, that's not taking into account other variables like your own maneuvering, any debris in the way of your shot, etc. What I also wonder is if the ships don't appear to be moving quickly not because they're actually moving slowly, but because they don't accelerate that well. If a starship can't accelerate to change velocity, they're going to be sluggish in trying to maneuver, since high velocity means nothing if you can't change that velocity.
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Batman
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 11:40pm 

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Bafallo, we're talking ships missing each other at ranges that WW2 navies would consider point blank (to the point where main guns might not be able to depress down enough to engage) without maneuvering at all. I have yet to see a TNG ship regardless of affiliation do any maneuvering besides a gentle horizontal turn.
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Baffalo
PostPosted: 2012-02-20 11:49pm 

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It was try and provide a realistic explanation or write it off as lazy writers and blind drunk crewmen.
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gigabytelord
PostPosted: 2012-02-21 12:09am 

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Batman wrote:
Those agile weapons routinely miss ships that dwarf a modern day aircraft carrier at spitting distances (assuming they're ever fired to begin with). I think it is safe to assume that whatever renders their accuracy that atrocious would translate to them trying to shoot down incoming projectiles.


Agreed.

Quote:
Of course, that's not taking into account other variables like your own maneuvering, any debris in the way of your shot, etc. What I also wonder is if the ships don't appear to be moving quickly not because they're actually moving slowly, but because they don't accelerate that well. If a starship can't accelerate to change velocity, they're going to be sluggish in trying to maneuver, since high velocity means nothing if you can't change that velocity.


Normally I would agree but at the ranges we see combat taking place, ie spitting range (thanks Batman), this doesn't really matter as much, lets say it in a different way.
Light travels at what? just under three hundred million meters a second? When was the last time you saw a battle in trek that was fought at a significant distance (ie thousands of km)? All of this means that even if star trek phasers/disruptors/whatever travel at very low fractions of c, travel time from point A(the weapon turret) to point B(the enemy ship) is going to quite literally be fractions of a second, especially considering that we routinely see ships shooting at each other at ranges so close that they can smell each others sweat.

NINJA EDIT: Damn it Batman you beat me to it.
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