Comic 360 - Normal Tactic

3rd Mar 2006, 12:00 AM in Man of Power (Part 1)
Normal Tactic
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Greyshley 1st Mar 2023, 6:39 PM edit delete reply
ok, this has...
a lot of implications?
firstly: apparently freebooters routinely find themselves able to attach themselves to larger ships, or at least often enough that this becomes a "normal tactic"
I can think of three ways this could happen?: they do it without the larger ship's crew noticing, the larger ship doesn't have much ability to get rid of them cheaply (stealth seems safer, but this clearly isn't meant to be a sane people tactic), or, finally, the larger ship just doesn't care.
this is not a hard sci-fi setting, so stealth in space is possible, should the author allow it.
the second option implies, to my knowledge:
a) a lack of point defense, or at least a lack of point defense up to smashing what most freebooters have in terms of hull/shielding (point defense is generally a countermeasure against fighter craft/missiles so it does make sense if a spaceship big enough for a crew outsizes that a bit.)
b) a lack of ways to remove the parasite once it's attached.
so, there would need to be parts of the ship's surface that the ship can't shoot at, which, again, appears reasonable, as well as some reason the larger ship's crew can't just go up there and plant bombs (most point-defense weaponry should be up to taking out any space-walking crew or jury-rigged bomber drones that approach. ironic)
c) the ability for the freebooter to safely disengage. in theory, this is the same as the landing, but given that the larger ship definitely knows it's coming, this would likely be riskier than landing.
the third option seems self-explanatory.
notably, landing on a ship also seems like a good opportunity to plant some bombs, which might also be a normal tactic freebooters use to get those pennies in the first place
Greyshley 1st Mar 2023, 6:47 PM edit delete reply
'course, if that's a common piracy tactic, the larger ship absolutely would not want smaller ships landing on them, an likely would develop tactics/modify their ships to counter this. (counter-stealth sensors, cheap detachable outer layer on top of the hull, beefier point-defense, whatever)
which might explain why this "was once a normal tactic", because the larger ships learned to counter it, and thus it has fallen out of use.
Greyshley 1st Mar 2023, 6:52 PM edit delete reply
notably, the freebooters would gain little by actually blowing their target up, so I imagine the actual execution might involve the victim getting hailed by multiple capsules that may or may not contain bombs (but which are certainly attached to the victims hull) asking the merchants/haulers to pretty please jettison some cargo if they value their lives.
Greyshley 1st Mar 2023, 7:09 PM edit delete reply
which in turn asks the question: why, then, was silver's ship vulnerable?
or was it?
maybe stuff capable of making it through that ship's armour is outside what freebooters can get their hands on.
maybe it's common practice for warships that size to have escorts to counter that kinda stuff, but it just didn't have one this time? (hell, mercenary escorts would likely be a pretty good defence against piracy in general. the more well-off merchants would likely consider it.)
Greyshley 1st Mar 2023, 7:28 PM edit delete reply
of course, the whole bomb-planting angle is a digression on my part.
even ignoring the fuel stuff, this tactic allows smaller ships to circumvent stuff like the ridpath.
this would make their movements a lot harder to predict, which is pretty nice when you're trying to elude capture, possibly even more so than the fuel thing.
Greyshley 1st Mar 2023, 8:06 PM edit delete reply
the other implications are about ftl itself?
so, firstly, mass is not really a relevant component to navigation?
which, yeah, wormhole, that makes sense, the exit point isn't gonna shift to the next star system because you tossed extra mass in it.
secondly, fuel is a factor.
whether that means ftl fuel specially made for ftl, or extra fuel into whatever takes the role of main reactor to get the extra power needed for the ftl drive. (possibly both?)
either way, it's a thing.
I wonder if mass effects fuel consumption?
It's almost certain that larger ships have/require more powerful ftl drives, hence why ridpath is for smaller ships.
it's likely they're fuel-hungrier too.
so the necessity is likely either in feeding the wormhole enough power to carry all that mass, or plain old making it big enough to fit (or fit safely)
in the second case, would it be more efficient to make one's spaceship needle-shaped(or at least somewhat cylindrical?
silver's ship appears mostly orb-shaped, so either a) ftl consumes fuel by mass or b)Needle-shaped ships have other downsides (long and slender ships would likely take more surface armour/shielding for similar cargo space, essentially being more expensive to build but possibly more fuel efficient, (I doubt it would be all that sturdy either. perhaps for older ships, built by people who hadn't yet learned hop to properly amp up ftl drives/before better methods of fuel production, or for people traveling along routes where they don't expect much need to have thick armour/be sturdy)) while still theoretically using less fuel in the long run.
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