BattleTech - The Board Game of Armored Combat

BattleTech Game Systems => Aerospace Combat => Topic started by: mrbooth on 04 July 2021, 08:39:40

Title: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: mrbooth on 04 July 2021, 08:39:40
With ilclan coming out shortly do you think we will get a new republic warship design or the same old three time destroyed four times salvaged 300 year old Star League era WarShips? HoW says that they have around 15 WarShips and names a few but only one is said to be a Essex class.

Thought?
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Dragon Cat on 04 July 2021, 09:32:45
They had the 3? Surviving Nova Cat WarShips they all converted to Republic service at the end of the War I think one was an Aegis I can't remember the others

Sarna has answers

https://www.sarna.net/wiki/Republic_Armed_Forces#Navy (https://www.sarna.net/wiki/Republic_Armed_Forces#Navy)
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: mrbooth on 04 July 2021, 09:52:30
Yes and in HoW there is mention of 8 WarShips at one jump point and almost a dozen at the one the Wolves arrived at.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Empyrus on 04 July 2021, 10:46:48
Off-hand, Hour of the Wolf called some assault DropShips "WarShips".
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: mrbooth on 04 July 2021, 11:03:52
Off-hand, Hour of the Wolf called some assault DropShips "WarShips".

That's what I am afraid of is bad writing which is a distinct possibility, I am hoping for something new Aero wise to play around with but doubting it.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Tyler Jorgensson on 04 July 2021, 13:42:05
IIRC HotW said they had four true Warships: I’m not sure the class on the fourth. Also the Castrums might as well have been Warships at that point lol.

But to answer the OPs original question I don’t think so. I’d love new designs too but highly unlikely.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 04 July 2021, 14:02:14
The two novels dealing with the Trial of Terra (maybe on purpose) was vague on what the Republic had to avoid issues.

What we know is there was Lola III, Essex, and the Aegis.  Additionally there appears to be a additional Essex. Maybe they salvaged one from SLDF wrecks in Sol. God knows there properly plenty of wrecks.  Warspite may have been the only new build, but i hope not.   The Dante Frigate, the Flatus was of course lost when the Fidelis crew self-destruct to prevent it's capture....which i hate that sort ending.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Empyrus on 04 July 2021, 14:56:32
The Dante Frigate, the Flatus was of course lost when the Fidelis crew self-destruct to prevent it's capture....which i hate that sort ending.
Given the name, good riddance.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Tyler Jorgensson on 04 July 2021, 15:04:55
Given the name, good riddance.

I mean… you’re not wrong
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: captnchuck67 on 27 August 2021, 07:25:42
Okay After digesting Hour of Wolf and I'll an. Is it just me or does the RoS navy seem a bit off? Should not there be more and heavier units? Plus,it is do or die why no captors or whatever those WoB missile barges where called,even if you put regular warheads in it will mess someone up.

Plus,the RoS commanders knew when the McKenna jumped in not only what it ment to the Planners but what might be on board. Even if it was only partially functional I would have blown it to dust

and if the plan was to let the wolves land then I would have left them totally alone and focused on the Falcon and made certain  that they lost a ton more than they did
Now with the Castrums.they had 53 year of building, at 1 a year thats 53. Say only 75% showed up to defend earth thats 39 of them.plus you cant tell me that in the time from when the RoS took over Terra till HoW they did not try and restore at least partially the SDS system.
I know the point of the story the wolves need to land and win but this is just all kinds of wrong.
If you have all these remnants of the WoS who refused to return and are now sitting out there holding out,Alric is going to have some issues.
I liked the ILClan book but what really disappointed me was the lack of detail. No ToE,No list of what units where there in what strengh. nothing. espcially the space battle.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: captnchuck67 on 27 August 2021, 07:44:15
I was doing more research and in TRO 3150 it says that all Castrums where
Quote
Prior to the implementation of Fortress
Republic, Castrums of the Border Fleets were
discreetly recalled to Prefecture X, ostensibly
for maintenance. Had Clarion Call not worked
as well as it did, the Castrums would have been
the Republic’s last line of defense.

So how many where there?
This is why BT either needs to fully flesh out the strategic stuff and give us hard numbers and tell us how things went down like the Tukiyyad books and the 4ISW  and have the Authors at least try and keep it real or not even try. This stuff makes my head explode.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 27 August 2021, 09:10:06
No new card numbers were ever given about the production of this dropship. For all we know they could have reduced production of the Castrums which were made in New Earth we last knew.

There was some of severe military cut backs in the Inner Sphere after the Jihad and some previous MWDA Novels mentioned other cut backs.

I would wonder if they were forgotten about like every thing space wise.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Weirdo on 27 August 2021, 09:32:51
Plus,the RoS commanders knew when the McKenna jumped in not only what it ment to the Planners but what might be on board. Even if it was only partially functional I would have blown it to dust

Blown it up with what? McKennas are extremely hard to kill even if you have a battleship of your own, and the Republic had absolutely nothing even remotely approaching that category. By my memory, the largest vessel they had was an Aegis, and Aegii have exactly two options when in a fight involving a McKenna:

1: Contrive the plot so that the fight starts at Short Range.

2: Be unimportant compared to other units in your fleet.

The only reason any Republic units survived the battle at the jump point at all is because Pride and the other large Wolf WarShips were focused on their job of escorting the troop ships. A McKenna that is cut loose for the hunt is the guaranteed death of every Aegis in the system that doesn't jump away, plain and simple.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Hellraiser on 27 August 2021, 09:35:27
Question, has anyone played out how well a Castrum would stand up to a real warship?

I ask because I recall a few years back someone running a simulation of a Fox full of Tiamats v/s an Agamemnon and it did NOT go well for the Fox IIRC.

Now a Castrum is quite a bit more than a Tiamat, but still just wondering how well they do against the Cruiser based forces the Clans have.

From other threads it does appear there may be a new 5th Warship Essex Class but everything else is unclarified & could be Pocket Warships or True Warships, unknown.

1 Castrum a year seems possible, Jumpships used to be slower in the old JS/DS sourcebook and the Castrum is pretty large but I'd say it would still be faster than 1/year but call it a base minimum of 53 seems like a good starting point.

Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Hellraiser on 27 August 2021, 09:37:31
1: Contrive the plot so that the fight starts at Short Range.

2: Be unimportant compared to other units in your fleet.

HighSpeed Pass?   But yeah, I agree.  :)
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Weirdo on 27 August 2021, 09:47:47
Good point. Three options, none of which were possible in that particular battle.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: monbvol on 27 August 2021, 11:36:20
Question, has anyone played out how well a Castrum would stand up to a real warship?

I ask because I recall a few years back someone running a simulation of a Fox full of Tiamats v/s an Agamemnon and it did NOT go well for the Fox IIRC.

Now a Castrum is quite a bit more than a Tiamat, but still just wondering how well they do against the Cruiser based forces the Clans have.

From other threads it does appear there may be a new 5th Warship Essex Class but everything else is unclarified & could be Pocket Warships or True Warships, unknown.

1 Castrum a year seems possible, Jumpships used to be slower in the old JS/DS sourcebook and the Castrum is pretty large but I'd say it would still be faster than 1/year but call it a base minimum of 53 seems like a good starting point.

Without having actually played it out on table top there was a thread some time ago where a fair number of Warship designs were exposed as to being very vulnerable to Castrums, some were even Clan/Former SLDF designs.  It did also show after a certain point in a straight stand up trade blow for blow fight it would get ugly for Castrums with far more designs.  But handle them carefully and be good with predicting your bearings only launch/activation points and it could still prove quite dangerous due to the simple fact a lot of Warships simply don't have enough AMS mounted on them.  Heck a lot still don't have any at all.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 27 August 2021, 12:51:27
Question, has anyone played out how well a Castrum would stand up to a real warship?

I ask because I recall a few years back someone running a simulation of a Fox full of Tiamats v/s an Agamemnon and it did NOT go well for the Fox IIRC.

Now a Castrum is quite a bit more than a Tiamat, but still just wondering how well they do against the Cruiser based forces the Clans have.

From other threads it does appear there may be a new 5th Warship Essex Class but everything else is unclarified & could be Pocket Warships or True Warships, unknown.

1 Castrum a year seems possible, Jumpships used to be slower in the old JS/DS sourcebook and the Castrum is pretty large but I'd say it would still be faster than 1/year but call it a base minimum of 53 seems like a good starting point.

Actually, I did a experiment battle that i posted on Crazy Hits some years ago. It took 4 of them to kill a Capellan Cruiser via MegaMek. (https://bg.battletech.com/forums/megamek-games/the-crazy-hits-thread-reborn!/msg1151571/#msg1151571) (Not using fighters, just big ships) No escort for the Warship.

(https://bg.battletech.com/forums/megamek-games/the-crazy-hits-thread-reborn!/?action=dlattach;attach=33214)

Don't let silly picture fool you, essentially summed up what happened.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Hellraiser on 27 August 2021, 13:15:51
Wow, that is both hilarious and actually pretty impressive.

4 DS v/s 1 WS =  Remove 2 DS & the WS.

That's the kind of a trade I'd be willing to make all day.

Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: CVB on 27 August 2021, 13:52:24
Especially when comparing costs
FH:
25,684,322,000 CBills
2xCastrum
11,640,608,000 CBills
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Hellraiser on 27 August 2021, 14:44:40
I was more looking at the tonnage in raw materials.

Loose 900KT?  v/s 200KT
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Weirdo on 27 August 2021, 15:27:31
How's the BV compare?
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: CVB on 27 August 2021, 16:02:13
MUL is silent on the FH, Sarna gives 83,137.
Both agree on 67,223 for the Castrum.
Considering a better than 3 to 1 rate, the result is to be expected...
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 27 August 2021, 16:24:29
It would have been cool if we had been able to game out the Naval Battle for Terra on MegaMek and let results come be canon. (I know ain't going happen, but trial for the Leviathen II was fun).  Castrums could have made a difference along with the Tiamats IIs, Dragus IIs, Interdictors, Achilles Dropships supporting by fighters and giving the Warships some cover from those kamikaze dropships.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Jellico on 27 August 2021, 18:21:52
Warships is why Tiamats exist. It is not a job for a Castrum.
Queue naval frustration. There simply aren't that many Wolves and the tools were put in place to handle a Star of WarShips. The McKenna is irrelevant.  It is only slightly more threatening than on of the multiple cruisers the Falcons brought. Or the Wolves for that matter. There should have been enough DropShip squadrons to act as a hard counter for multiple WarShips.  The threat is obvious so where is the counter?
Yes, I am aware what WarShips do to DropShips. But the entire assault DropShip complement of the Republic is designed to take it. So yeah, I am deeply frustrated.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Cannonshop on 27 August 2021, 20:31:57
Warships is why Tiamats exist. It is not a job for a Castrum.
Queue naval frustration. There simply aren't that many Wolves and the tools were put in place to handle a Star of WarShips. The McKenna is irrelevant.  It is only slightly more threatening than on of the multiple cruisers the Falcons brought. Or the Wolves for that matter. There should have been enough DropShip squadrons to act as a hard counter for multiple WarShips.  The threat is obvious so where is the counter?
Yes, I am aware what WarShips do to DropShips. But the entire assault DropShip complement of the Republic is designed to take it. So yeah, I am deeply frustrated.

thus, why they put too many details into the story.  The outcome was predetermined, by adding detail the writers just highlighted the idea that the ROTS navy is completely and totally incompetent.

A much BETTER approach, would've saved a lot of pages.  "The Republic Navy was Annihilated early on."  and never mentioned again-thus, shifting the discusstion from 'how incompetent, don't they know how to use that stuff?" to "gee, the Wolves must be really brilliant, I wonder how they did it?"

Sometimes, Less really is more.  For instance, when your writer can't grasp either the tabletop or the conceptual realities of space combat, or when they're told to 'dumb it down' or apply stupidity pills to make an outcome work.  The better option is just to baldly state the outcome with as minimal details as physically possible so as to avoid getting logical people going "WTF dude? really??"

The entire naval battle for Terra should've been, at most, four sentences of six words apiece or less.

Either that, or they should've formulated and treated the material with some respect, while bringing out a logical conclusion that didn't rely on hamhandedly making one side complete morons.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: monbvol on 27 August 2021, 21:48:38
Warships is why Tiamats exist. It is not a job for a Castrum.
Queue naval frustration. There simply aren't that many Wolves and the tools were put in place to handle a Star of WarShips. The McKenna is irrelevant.  It is only slightly more threatening than on of the multiple cruisers the Falcons brought. Or the Wolves for that matter. There should have been enough DropShip squadrons to act as a hard counter for multiple WarShips.  The threat is obvious so where is the counter?
Yes, I am aware what WarShips do to DropShips. But the entire assault DropShip complement of the Republic is designed to take it. So yeah, I am deeply frustrated.

I largely agree.  The Castrum is interesting and serves as an interesting case study/point of comparison for what it possible but it is not the best Warship killing PWS out there.

Doesn't mean it can't seriously threaten some even 1v1 but that doesn't make it the best.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 28 August 2021, 10:33:38
I always thought that the Castrum was intended as the command ship of Dropship squadron.
It also served as limited fire support and carrier.  While Tiamat II, Dragus II, interdictor, Achilles were the attack dogs. The problem fore Republic Border Fleet was likely dedicated Jumpship assets.

For the Battle of Terra, I would eager not all of the fleet was in Sol system when the Wolves and Falcons jump the fence/wall get in fight.  Those Forts seemed to have been staple of the system's defense.

No one expected Wolves to use essential ram Dropships to remedy what needed to be removed.
It goes against conventional Clan warfare tactics. Boarding ships, so-call clippers ships aren't so far from Clans methods, given Lupus dropshuttle/small craft job is the same but not as fast or armored.

If RecGuides payoff, perhaps a full TRO could include the missing units. Given the stats exist, I'd image a reused M9 station will likely be used as basis for the Fort's stats. The Pile driver class is armor (lots of armor) and speed, the Clippers just infantry bays , maybe small craft bays and couple weapons and of course speed.

I just hope failed Warspite will be its own design be bigger than a Aegis.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 29 August 2021, 11:00:42
The Battle of Terra also ignored something else. Terra's SDS network. Unlike when the WoB invaded the incoming Wolves were expected and the SDS command centers would have been manned and ready. Lots of orbital and ground defences were just ignored during the Wolf Invasion in favor of jump point space station defences. Has the RoTS never heard of defence in depth?
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 29 August 2021, 15:43:03
I'm guessing the SDS was not operational.  Also, Stone knew he was doomed.  So he wanted make sure he engineered right Clan to take possession of Terra.  SDS would have been pretty nasty if had been operational.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Dragon Cat on 29 August 2021, 16:28:14
Honestly why the Republic didn't have Mass assault DropShip squadrons and a fully operational SDS on multiple key worlds is a great mystery

For a nation in the middle of aggressive factions defence should have been of paramount importance  the Hegemony only fell from the inside and only then fell to its own army

With an SDS the Republic could have held out throughout the Dark Age I'd have liked that option over the whole Jump bubble/wall
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Maingunnery on 29 August 2021, 16:39:32
Honestly why the Republic didn't have Mass assault DropShip squadrons and a fully operational SDS on multiple key worlds is a great mystery
Maybe most of the PWS strength was deployed outside of Terra to keep other Houses from interfering while they attempt to absorb Clan Wolf?

Now if this is true, where would those ships go? IlClan? FS? Merc? RotS-in-exile?
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Dragon Cat on 29 August 2021, 17:32:07
I'm guessing against Liao or former Falcon territory both of which were seen as "worse" than Clan Wolf

Stone(r)'s strategy at the end is so confused his plan broken from the go and the fools who still worshiped him bought into it
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Liam's Ghost on 29 August 2021, 17:39:49
I'm guessing the SDS was not operational.  Also, Stone knew he was doomed.  So he wanted make sure he engineered right Clan to take possession of Terra.

Nope, his own internal monologue indicates he assumed he could beat the Wolves with what he had.

The genesis of his dumb, DUMB naval strategy is actually spelled out in Hour of the Wolf. He was convinced he could handle things on the ground, so he wanted to preserve his fleet for supporting future operations to retake Republic worlds.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 29 August 2021, 18:54:54
I wonder if Levin had a different plan than Stone eventually went with. More use of PWS's, reactivation of the SDS network around Terra, and serious construction (seriously, one of the most advanced Shipyards in the Inner Sphere and they dont build a Battleship?) and salvage of warship wrecks, heaven knows Terra probably had several floating around that might be salvaged. If nothing else the ground war probably would have included more Mech Regiments than we saw.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 29 August 2021, 19:27:17
I would have hoped Levin would have. 

There was recall of entire Border fleets. The only thing I would think is the border fleet could have been spreading in Prefecture X after the recall.  I don't think many were rolled into the army expeditions since they were supposed to be trying not to draw attention to themselves. Castrums would be red flag it was a Republican force.

Given the need for KF Drives, the Jump Ship fleet would likly be scarest. the Castrums could been left in place verses than Terra.  Two docking collars need taking up too much room.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Liam's Ghost on 29 August 2021, 20:29:05
I wonder if Levin had a different plan than Stone eventually went with. More use of PWS's, reactivation of the SDS network around Terra, and serious construction (seriously, one of the most advanced Shipyards in the Inner Sphere and they dont build a Battleship?) and salvage of warship wrecks, heaven knows Terra probably had several floating around that might be salvaged. If nothing else the ground war probably would have included more Mech Regiments than we saw.

Let's be honest, the writers had a different plan at one point for the whole shebang. I'm not sure where it got changed or scaled back, but earlier impressions of what the Republic was building (mostly in space, but to an extent on the ground with all those remote drone battlemechs) painted a very different picture of what the battle of Terra was going to look like.

(yes, I'm still bitter about that)
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 29 August 2021, 21:08:06
Likely victim of re-writes. (sigh)
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Jellico on 29 August 2021, 22:45:34
I am going to imagine a massive Caspar network was in place, which got done in when the suicide Wolves rammed the space stations. Why else would you have combat space stations?
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Hellraiser on 30 August 2021, 01:24:05
I thought the Republic didn't want to go the Drone route?
That was the entire switch over for the Tiamat & Dragau lines.
Terra originally had 5 massive combat stations at each Jump Point when Kerensky retook it.
I don't recall them having anything to do with Caspars either, just jump point defense/security.
Kerensky loaded up 15 Dropships with explosives & suicided them into the stations at each point IIRC rather than deal with the defenses in them.
I would have thought with a decade behind the wall that basic SDS base defenses would have been reactivated even if you didn't rebuild a drone network.

Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Liam's Ghost on 30 August 2021, 02:51:16
I thought the Republic didn't want to go the Drone route?
That was the entire switch over for the Tiamat & Dragau lines.

Large drones, no. But the republic had been canonically deploying drone aerofighters and remote drone battlemechs.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 30 August 2021, 05:32:13
Large drones, no. But the republic had been canonically deploying drone aerofighters and remote drone battlemechs.

You actually do see drone mechs used against the Capellans in one book but I think it's more of a 'what might have been' moment.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Liam's Ghost on 30 August 2021, 05:36:51
You actually do see drone mechs used against the Capellans in one book but I think it's more of a 'what might have been' moment.

They show up in token moments in hour of the wolf as well, but are functionally just ordinary battlemechs with no thought put towards how and why you'd use drones in the first place.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 30 August 2021, 06:44:49
I was reading my physical copy of the ilClan book last night.  It does mention the Republic's use of dropships, but no details on which ones.
They do mention two of the Wolf's Warships, a Cameron Battlecruiser, and Liberator Cruiser taking Titan Shipyards in the initial days of the Battle.  They scrapped the Cameron due to battle damage being too much.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Dragon Cat on 30 August 2021, 07:02:15
You actually do see drone mechs used against the Capellans in one book but I think it's more of a 'what might have been' moment.

Was actually a very very cool scene
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 30 August 2021, 07:16:22
I was reading my physical copy of the ilClan book last night.  It does mention the Republic's use of dropships, but no details on which ones.
They do mention two of the Wolf's Warships, a Cameron Battlecruiser, and Liberator Cruiser taking Titan Shipyards in the initial days of the Battle.  They scrapped the Cameron due to battle damage being too much.

Which makes no sense. You literally cannot replace these ships and even if it takes a decade to rebuild it then it would be worth it to get that ship back in service.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 30 August 2021, 08:15:42
Which makes no sense. You literally cannot replace these ships and even if it takes a decade to rebuild it then it would be worth it to get that ship back in service.
I didn't say i LIKED what they did....makes me rather angry, but what can I do?  Aerospace Fans are few in number in compared to the Mech-only crowd.   Hopefully in the years to come, maybe Titan can be used to produce new ships to replace Wolf's losses for the new Star League / Wolf Touman.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Maingunnery on 30 August 2021, 10:56:41
I didn't say i LIKED what the did....makes me rather angry, but what can I do?  Aerospace Fans are few in number in compared to the Mech-only crowd.   Hopefully in the years to come, maybe Titan can be used to produce new ships to replace Wolf's losses for the new Star League / Wolf Touman.
Maybe they just plan to use the Cameron for parts to get the other WarShips back to 100% fast?
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Hellraiser on 30 August 2021, 14:25:41
Semi tangent question, but, does anyone know if there is a restriction on having Drones linked to Naval C3?

I'm wondering about a Dragau-1 variant w/ Naval C3 & just curious if the concept is legal.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Cannonshop on 30 August 2021, 23:01:54
I am going to imagine a massive Caspar network was in place, which got done in when the suicide Wolves rammed the space stations. Why else would you have combat space stations?

because they're cheaper to base your real arm of decision on??  Fighters need basing, they need a place to refuel, and for your day-to-day operations having a fixed base at each of the major jump points makes sense if you're having to watch the budget because so much of it is going into warships you don't have the ability to deploy because you've got a hyperspace wall around your home system.

YOu also need to take into account the psychology of the BTU for a moment: all your major decisions including naval ones, are made by heavy-equipment operators with delusions of adequacy fed by holoprogramming like The Immortal Warriortm.

Thus, the idea that a crust defense, or a strong wall, is an adequate position from which to fight a naval battle.  The enitre mindset is rooted around a personality cult built around a 'mechwarrior-therefore, in-depth strategic understanding of three dimensional warfare simply isn't likely in Stone's Republic for the same reason horse cavalry officers really didn't grasp the use of aircraft in a wet-naval context in 1918.  The original Caspars themselves weren't used effectively by anyone, certainly not up to their potential, because of that same basic cultural blind-spot.

Alaric just copied Kerensky's use of fireships, and for the same reason: he didn't have the strategic understanding necessary to use another type of tactic, because that understanding runs counter to the culture he grew up in, just as it ran counter to Stone's culture.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 31 August 2021, 07:35:57
Only issue with that argument was that Alaric deliberately found the best naval commander he could for the invasion. Someone who should of knew better in how to deploy and fight a naval battle. Which he did, he used superior numbers and cutting a hole in the defenses to get the troops to the surface and not taking on a whole planets worth of defenses. Honestly I think the effort put into the orbital defense would have been better spent at building PWS's at the Titan Yards and maybe a few Dantes.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Liam's Ghost on 31 August 2021, 08:37:09
Personally I think it would have been better spent having more than four squadrons of aerofighters defending the orbital zone. But that's just me.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: monbvol on 31 August 2021, 09:29:27
Also cutting a hole wouldn't work the same in the truly 3D realm of space combat.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 31 August 2021, 10:10:50
It's too bad we're able game out the naval battle with naval squadrons, fighters, etc on MegaMek in controlled encounters. It would have been nice way give some detail we'd like without overloading the writers / developers.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Cannonshop on 31 August 2021, 10:50:52
Only issue with that argument was that Alaric deliberately found the best naval commander he could for the invasion. Someone who should of knew better in how to deploy and fight a naval battle. Which he did, he used superior numbers and cutting a hole in the defenses to get the troops to the surface and not taking on a whole planets worth of defenses. Honestly I think the effort put into the orbital defense would have been better spent at building PWS's at the Titan Yards and maybe a few Dantes.



Stone's basic flaw was trusting a crust defense.  Alaric found the closest thing available to a competent naval commander in a setting and universe where such honestly doesn't exist, because all the records, schooling, training, and budgets for every faction (even the 'warship faction') is focused on Battlemechs and ground combat.

admittedly, he only NEEDED 'barely competent' to outperform Stone's people.

The truly major flaw of Stone's 'defense' strategy was relying on what is called a 'crust' defense-it operates on the same assumption that you're on a 2 dimensional flat space, that everything is stationary in relation to everything else, and that there's a 'down' direction, with a horizon and cover.

none of this is true in space, but when your best navigators got their job by knowing how to tell the computer to pull up three hundred year old (or older) records without making observations? (aka untrained, aka how the WoB hid the hidden five-by erasing them from the nav updates EVERYONE is using instead of doing their own work or doing their own updates.)

Stations are like Castles-they're a place to store your consumables when you can't afford to carry them all the time, they're also distractions that an enemy has to devote assets to neutralizing,a nd if they're strong enough, that delay can let your maneuver forces exploit the distraction to destroy the enemy, relying on them solely (or even mostly) is a mistake, but it's an easy one to make when your planners don't think too hard about how things work in space.

which nobody in the BTU really does. (well, maybe the pre-reunification Taurians...)

the better bet, would be instead of building bombardment platforms and calling them 'ships' the Republic had actually built and utilized ships with appropriate armament.  Per the Ares conventions, 73,000 Kilometers-the distance from an inhabited planet you need to be in, to legally utilize nuclear ordnance, and nukes are THE weapon for putting an enemy's Naval vessels on the dead list.  The NL-45(smallcraft, ECM?)  made its bones stopping a five-fighter nuke strike-but that was only FIVE FIGHTERS, which isn't a strike package against a naval vessel, it's a token effort launched by someone who focuses only on ground and doesn't kit to fight navies.

even if you 'lose' most of your nuclear missiles in the first salvo, one or two hits is a significant loss of enemy combat power, maybe even enough to cripple their invasion, moreso if you're doing it along the approach after they've smashed the crust defense you put up to collect taxes and duties at the jump points.

But that requires having commands laid out for naval battle, commanded by people who know what they're doing in a naval battle.  Neither of these was true for Stone's personality cult.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Hellraiser on 31 August 2021, 11:01:18
I'm not sure Nukes were ever THAT common though.

Yes, the Ares Conventions set a distance and Yes, we do see them in the 1st SW, but that was the decent into darkness of massed warfare.

Did we actually see them used ever in the SL era?

Even in the FCCW when we did see them it was a hidden cache & when used it spelled the end for the CO that used them, admittedly that was on the planets surface, but, my point is, do we actually see them get used in a "Legal" manner really ever in canon?

I'm thinking that regardless of if its "Legal" that it is still very much "Frowned upon" by most people.

It seems that, historically, Amaris & the Blakists were the only ones using them "on the reg" and no one associates either of those as "honorable".

Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: monbvol on 31 August 2021, 12:02:50
I'm not sure Nukes were ever THAT common though.

Yes, the Ares Conventions set a distance and Yes, we do see them in the 1st SW, but that was the decent into darkness of massed warfare.

Did we actually see them used ever in the SL era?

Even in the FCCW when we did see them it was a hidden cache & when used it spelled the end for the CO that used them, admittedly that was on the planets surface, but, my point is, do we actually see them get used in a "Legal" manner really ever in canon?

I'm thinking that regardless of if its "Legal" that it is still very much "Frowned upon" by most people.

It seems that, historically, Amaris & the Blakists were the only ones using them "on the reg" and no one associates either of those as "honorable".

The Reunification War era Star League used them quite heavily, especially against the Taurians, but they did suspend the Ares Conventions for that conflict.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 31 August 2021, 12:55:00
The Star League believed nules were a first strike weapon. The SLDF was a Total War formation. The Fist Succession War as well as the Second were also heavy nuclear weapon use. And the WoB were very heavily invested in there use, up to and including in the use of defending Terra both against Case White but also against Stones Coalition. Its actually odd that the RoTS didn't use them to defend the orbitals much less the ground.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Liam's Ghost on 31 August 2021, 13:07:52
They were almost certainly concerned that the fighting would have escalated beyond their control, particularly if they couldn't take out the clan WarShips. Recall that back during the Jihad the Snow Ravens responded to a nuclear attack on their WarShips by levelling every population center on Galedon.

Once the Republic lost orbital control, the only thing keeping the clans from burning down the defenders from orbit redoubt by redoubt was their own sense of restraint.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 31 August 2021, 16:46:48
They were almost certainly concerned that the fighting would have escalated beyond their control, particularly if they couldn't take out the clan WarShips. Recall that back during the Jihad the Snow Ravens responded to a nuclear attack on their WarShips by levelling every population center on Galedon.

Once the Republic lost orbital control, the only thing keeping the clans from burning down the defenders from orbit redoubt by redoubt was their own sense of restraint.

Planetary Bombardment seems to be a skill the Clans rarely fall back on. I can see the Wolves doing so but only if the Wolves were on the back foot fighting on Terra. The Clans always want to minimize damage. Particularly for a world like Terra which they want to take as undamaged as possible. Interestingly the Ares Conventions allowed for nuclear weapons in space warfare and Alarics own intention to invade Terra was conquest. He made no bid at all which also removed any hamstrings that the Republic might have had themselves for there own defence. In the end, PWS's, aerospace fighters, and the Republic Warships letting loose with nukes early on might have actually removed the Wolf Warships from the playing field early on and removed the threat they posed. Because the Wolves jumped in with the intention of a conventional fight. Nukes were the last weapon they would have prepped to use. Heck, most probably didnt even have any onboard besides the McKennas Pride.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: monbvol on 31 August 2021, 17:24:59
Planetary Bombardment seems to be a skill the Clans rarely fall back on. I can see the Wolves doing so but only if the Wolves were on the back foot fighting on Terra. The Clans always want to minimize damage. Particularly for a world like Terra which they want to take as undamaged as possible. Interestingly the Ares Conventions allowed for nuclear weapons in space warfare and Alarics own intention to invade Terra was conquest. He made no bid at all which also removed any hamstrings that the Republic might have had themselves for there own defence. In the end, PWS's, aerospace fighters, and the Republic Warships letting loose with nukes early on might have actually removed the Wolf Warships from the playing field early on and removed the threat they posed. Because the Wolves jumped in with the intention of a conventional fight. Nukes were the last weapon they would have prepped to use. Heck, most probably didnt even have any onboard besides the McKennas Pride.

Turtle Bay, Galedon, and another world I forget the name of would contend that just a bit.  Plus early fiction had the Clans doing some pretty terrible things to planets that resisted them.

So counting on the enemy to show restraint was no sure thing.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Maingunnery on 31 August 2021, 17:28:32
Nukes would not have really helped, since the Jihad we have seen more an more designs with heavy Point Defenses even among the Clans. Considering the whole of Clan Wolf showed up means also that all their PD was on the field and any detected nukes would have received top priority. Any fighters with nukes would also be easy prey for Clan interceptor ASF.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 31 August 2021, 19:01:20
Nukes would not have really helped, since the Jihad we have seen more an more designs with heavy Point Defenses even among the Clans. Considering the whole of Clan Wolf showed up means also that all their PD was on the field and any detected nukes would have received top priority. Any fighters with nukes would also be easy prey for Clan interceptor ASF.

Inner Sphere Aerospace pilots were one of the few areas that eclipsed the Clans. Plus I'm not talking a nuke here or there. I'm talking entire squadrons on aerospace fighters with nukes backed by PWS's firing off nukes. Very World War 2 in scope with multiple squadrons targeting a single warship at a time. Odds are something will get through. And for some ships, like a McKenna the PD just isn't there.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Liam's Ghost on 31 August 2021, 19:05:39
Bombardment is still something the clans have in their back pocket. It's hard to speculate how that factored into the republic's naval strategy, since they didn't really have a naval strategy... but if it were me I'd want to hold off on the nukes unless I was sure I could take his big guns out of play.

And I'm iffy on that from bearing only range, since the wolves could overlap point defense fields on the way in and make any hits few and far between and I doubt anybody in universe would let me have the number of missile platforms necessary to overwhelm that.

Nah, if I was going to defend the orbitals and the great and freezer burnt Devlin Stone insisted I couldn't use his precious warships in the defense, I'd want stations to base as many drone fighters as I could get out of. Still use bearing only missile strikes, because naval missiles are cheap and any hit I score helps, but my primary defense would be the cylon death cloud. If the numbers crunch to where I can score localized superiority for just long enough to deliver a heavy payload and get away with it, then I consider the nukes.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 31 August 2021, 19:14:00
Bombardment is still something the clans have in their back pocket. It's hard to speculate how that factored into the republic's naval strategy, since they didn't really have a naval strategy... but if it were me I'd want to hold off on the nukes unless I was sure I could take his big guns out of play.

And I'm iffy on that from bearing only range, since the wolves could overlap point defense fields on the way in and make any hits few and far between and I doubt anybody in universe would let me have the number of missile platforms necessary to overwhelm that.

Nah, if I was going to defend the orbitals and the great and freezer burnt Devlin Stone insisted I couldn't use his precious warships in the defense, I'd want stations to base as many drone fighters as I could get out of. Still use bearing only missile strikes, because naval missiles are cheap and any hit I score helps, but my primary defense would be the cylon death cloud. If the numbers crunch to where I can score localized superiority for just long enough to deliver a heavy payload and get away with it, then I consider the nukes.

Swarming naval missiles is always a good idea. But the issue is delivery. The orbital stations were taken out very quickly and the stations only had a limited time to attack. If your gonna go with swarm attacks then a mobile force with those missiles would be the way to go. A unit of six Arondight PW's could put out a large amount of missiles all directed at a single target. Enough to do significant damage and defend themselves against incoming Aerospace fighters. Even better, they do not need to sitting on the jumping. They could be based on defense platforms, on the RoTS warships, or even sitting on the moon to deploy when it comes around in its orbit!
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Maingunnery on 31 August 2021, 19:20:14
Inner Sphere Aerospace pilots were one of the few areas that eclipsed the Clans.
Equal, not eclipsed.

Quote
Plus I'm not talking a nuke here or there. I'm talking entire squadrons on aerospace fighters with nukes backed by PWS's firing off nukes. Very World War 2 in scope with multiple squadrons targeting a single warship at a time. Odds are something will get through. And for some ships, like a McKenna the PD just isn't there.
There is a Clan's worth of ASF, SC and PWS there, they will outnumber the defenders.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Cannonshop on 31 August 2021, 19:41:13
Equal, not eclipsed.
There is a Clan's worth of ASF, SC and PWS there, they will outnumber the defenders.
Swarming naval missiles is always a good idea. But the issue is delivery. The orbital stations were taken out very quickly and the stations only had a limited time to attack. If your gonna go with swarm attacks then a mobile force with those missiles would be the way to go. A unit of six Arondight PW's could put out a large amount of missiles all directed at a single target. Enough to do significant damage and defend themselves against incoming Aerospace fighters. Even better, they do not need to sitting on the jumping. They could be based on defense platforms, on the RoTS warships, or even sitting on the moon to deploy when it comes around in its orbit!

and that Clan's worth is why you take the risk to hit their carriers, but to do that, you have to have mobile forces, and Stone focused on fixed defenses, and fixed defenses alone are a testimony to false assumptions and a 'strategy' based on hope and unicorn farts.

But as Gio pointed out, the Republic's 'strategy' wasn't a strategy, it was one old man's narcissistic fantasy, as carried out by his brainwashed minions.  The focus on nukes in the discussion is interesting because really, they're the smallest  factor.

Stoney's 'Strategy' would have failed even with all the nukes, because his defensive plan, including relying on Sats and Stations, is a fail from the outset.  what I'm saying here, is you're right, mostly, because he lost the war the moment he handed the initiative to the enemy.

which he did, from the outset.

No walled city has every survived a seige without external support.  The moment the walls get pierced, regardless of how long the seige has been, those cities either fall, or get rescued.  Vienna, Constantinople, Berlin, doesn't matter-fixed defenses only work if help is on the way, and it wasn't.

stone orchestrated Gray Monday, and his followers executed Fortress, and with that, Devlin Stone lost the war.  He lost it because he didn't know his enemy, and he did not understand his own assets, instead basing his entire defense on false assumptions.

I'll point out again, the only 'successes' to be found among the Republic's military occurred under subordinates willing to go against his 'grand strategy'-and there were too few of those to make any difference whatsoever.

The actual layout of his defense, on the naval scale, was built on the kind of assumptions only someone uninterested in outer space could treat as credible, and was rooted in techniques already proven to fail in universe in previous conflicts (See: Reunification War, Star League Civil War, and Succession Wars 1 and 2, the Jihad where Stone made his fame, and so on.)

Stone made nearly every mistake you could make, from giving his opponents the initiative and cutting off reliable information, to relying on stationary, fixed defenses that aren't capable on their own, to placing his naval force at the mercy of his enemies by building it to that stationary, fixed defense model, to witholding his mobile reserve with the idea that it would be 'better used on offense'.

and that's before we get to his doing the same things on the ground after the landings started.

which should look familiar, because the WoB/Master/etc. made exactly teh same mistakes, which were made by New Dallas after Exodus, and made by Amaris before him.

A Naval force, in a fixed position, is not a naval force-it's an expensive bunker, and expensive bunkers collapse.  The Maginot Line, the Siegfried Line, these demonstrate the folly of fixed defense against an enemy granted the initiative and strategic mobility.

as the saying goes, "Defense may seem stronger, but it rarely wins decisions."


Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: monbvol on 31 August 2021, 20:53:32
Inner Sphere Aerospace pilots were one of the few areas that eclipsed the Clans. Plus I'm not talking a nuke here or there. I'm talking entire squadrons on aerospace fighters with nukes backed by PWS's firing off nukes. Very World War 2 in scope with multiple squadrons targeting a single warship at a time. Odds are something will get through. And for some ships, like a McKenna the PD just isn't there.

As others have pointed out the numbers were on the Clan's side in this fight.

Plus my reading of the Jihad era and beyond Clans indicate they no longer neglected their ASF arms like they did before.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Stormlion1 on 01 September 2021, 07:06:30
As others have pointed out the numbers were on the Clan's side in this fight.

Plus my reading of the Jihad era and beyond Clans indicate they no longer neglected their ASF arms like they did before.

That's also a issue I fail to understand. The Wolves outnumbered the Defenders? Stone had decades of production of possible PWS and Aerospace Fighters. Even taking into account ground forces production Terra alone should have produced far more in the way of orbital defense. The Titan Shipyards should have been producing dropship hulls quickly unless there were raw material issues. And then there would be the construction rate on Terra itself. By definition Terra should have had thousands of PWS's available if they started production after the Wall went up. Now while a PWS isnt a warship no warship would stand against that many PWS's.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Maingunnery on 01 September 2021, 07:36:30
That's also a issue I fail to understand. The Wolves outnumbered the Defenders? Stone had decades of production of possible PWS and Aerospace Fighters. Even taking into account ground forces production Terra alone should have produced far more in the way of orbital defense. The Titan Shipyards should have been producing dropship hulls quickly unless there were raw material issues. And then there would be the construction rate on Terra itself. By definition Terra should have had thousands of PWS's available if they started production after the Wall went up. Now while a PWS isnt a warship no warship would stand against that many PWS's.
Well there are many factors.
- Terra doesn't produce that fast ( thousands of PWS).
- The sudden chaos of the Dark Age really prevented proper leadership.
- Terra is resource poor and the JumpShips that would normally transported those resources have been used for the Wall or for critical troop transports.
- Many of the produced PWS are likely outside of the Terra system either stuck there without transport or tasked with keeping the Houses out.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Wrangler on 01 September 2021, 09:16:06
It's entirely possible there other resources that were left off the books (including for us) that Terra could have tapped into. 

Such as the Comstar shipyard / bases which may have been left listed as destroyed but may have organized mothball field.

If Republic forces were able secret in the periphery's lone Warship.  They could done the same with PWS or left over assets from the Jihad.

Either the conflict unfolded way it was intended to by plot, perhaps with not enough detail sate us fans.  Either way, its hard argue what they should have and shouldn't have or where they got anything.  Abstract been go-to thing because how detailed the BT Universe is and something going be missed unless it's being helded by one or so people.

Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: monbvol on 01 September 2021, 09:39:32
That's also a issue I fail to understand. The Wolves outnumbered the Defenders? Stone had decades of production of possible PWS and Aerospace Fighters. Even taking into account ground forces production Terra alone should have produced far more in the way of orbital defense. The Titan Shipyards should have been producing dropship hulls quickly unless there were raw material issues. And then there would be the construction rate on Terra itself. By definition Terra should have had thousands of PWS's available if they started production after the Wall went up. Now while a PWS isnt a warship no warship would stand against that many PWS's.

Battletech as a setting has always held true to one fundamental concept:

The financial cost of a thing is not actually the primary limiting factor for why there are not FAR greater numbers of them being produced.

It took more than Terra at the height of the Star League to build up the SLDF after all, even the naval arm.
Title: Re: Republic WarShips Battle of Terra
Post by: Cannonshop on 01 September 2021, 09:40:38
It's entirely possible there other resources that were left off the books (including for us) that Terra could have tapped into. 

Such as the Comstar shipyard / bases which may have been left listed as destroyed but may have organized mothball field.

If Republic forces were able secret in the periphery's lone Warship.  They could done the same with PWS or left over assets from the Jihad.

Either the conflict unfolded way it was intended to by plot, perhaps with not enough detail sate us fans.  Either way, its hard argue what they should have and shouldn't have or where they got anything.  Abstract been go-to thing because how detailed the BT Universe is and something going be missed unless it's being helded by one or so people.

I'll go back to what I said at the outset of the thread: They used TOO MUCH of the WRONG detail and made it look bad as a direct result.  This is a situation where 'more really is less, and less really is more'.

IOW they should've kept it to around four sentences of no more than six words for the entire 'naval battle' of terra and been done with it-this would've left enough mystery to make the Hero Faction (Wolf) look good, without highlighting the absolute and utter incompetence of the naval battle itself.  People would be speculating on 'wow, that wolf naval commander must be brilliant!' instead of 'geez, go figure the ROTS was run by imbeciles!'.

which is, admittedly, the take I got after reading the scenes, after which I had to engage in much mental gymnastics to try and make it less...offensive to my sensibilities.

I really shouldn't feel compelled to make excuses for the authors.  If you can't write a Naval Battle, just drop the result on the page in the fewest words necessary to get across the outcome, and be done with it.