“The best diplomat I know is a fully activated phaser bank!”

Good morning all, finally finished up my take on the Federation class.  (Forgot to mention in my annotations, my description of the bridge is based on this one here)

Federation class DN

 

Between reading through the “Vanguard” series as I do and my ever-present desire to make these write-ups more three-dimensional or ‘fleshed out’, I’ve used politics as my tool of choice to make this battlewagon more than just an imposing plot device.  As I mentioned in my annotations, I’ve got a draft sitting here where I mapped out the UFP Presidents (with brief notes) from about 2245 to 2270 or so.  Whether they or the relevant Starfleet Commanders (that I haven’t yet mapped out) get any mention in the future is up in the air.  Aside from one President’s emphasis on logistics (which will necessitate some revisions to certain pieces), politics during the Class I era stayed relatively quiet.

 

One thing I did want to explain a bit however is the role of Carriers & Starfighters in Starfleet overall.  Early on in my writing, while it was still pretty ‘fanboyish’, I introduced both without much thought (and like much of my early work, I’m embarrassed to go back and read that stuff).  After reading the Hobbyist’s Guide……… from front to back several times and really refining my history of the Four Years War in my Surya/Coventry writeup, here’s how I see things.  Starfleet’s Starfighter Command evolved from it’s Earth-Romulan War origins into a potential tactical tool.  The fighters themselves had good range and were fairly sophisticated for the day.  The carriers were similarly sophisticated, with Cruiser-level armament (or better) and the kind of C3/EW systems that would be found on later classes.  With this said, a Carrier could arrive on station in a given sector and deploy her fighters to establish nearly total control.

Obviously this wasn’t enough to keep the Klingons at bay, but from a defensive standpoint, it remained relevant.  This explains my mention of the Yorktown class CV towards the end and will underpin my reasoning for any future mention of Carriers/Fighters.

 

I’ve gone back and read through some of my previous posts and spreadsheets/notes and the last Class I ship I’ll do is the Lancer class Corvette (a successor to the Romulan War era Mercury class, based on this design by Kristian Trigwell and mentioned in the Hobbyist’s Guide………. as the Procyon class).  God willing, my own ambitions and motivation won’t let this one drag out.

 

Aside from all that, my go-to source for orthos, ‘admiral-horton’ (DeviantART) has emptied out his gallery and begun re-rendering all of his ships.  Also, there’s been some great stuff coming from Starship Dynamics lately including a great Battlecruiser offshoot of Constitution (a transformation of the Hood after it was damaged by the M-5).  Their upcoming project centers on the diminutive Archer class.  You can follow along on their Facebook and Tumblr pages.

Antares

Hey all, back again with some more TOS goodness for you.  After fighting to maintain some semblance of motivation and focus, I’ve finished my take on Antares.  Now here, with such an infamous name, I think it bears repeating that everything I present here on this blog conforms to my own personal interpretation/view of the Trekverse.  I don’t try and pass it off as gospel, nor would I.  The beauty of this ‘fanon’ realm we all inhabit is that there’s room for infinite interpretations of just about everything.

 

So with that said, here’s my take on Antares.

Antares class Surveyor

 

Also, for a quick review on just why the name is so infamous and just how much baggage is attached to it, head on over to the ASDB’s Antares page right here.

 

As I mentioned in my annotations, it’s not covered in the Hobbyist’s Guide………. but a Corvette derivative (Procyon) is instead.  After some thought, I’ve decided to include that too, as a replacement for my Romulan War-era Mercury (I’m not really a fan of the Oberth-derived ‘Class II’ designs).  There is also a clearer path forward from here – going to Okinawa and finally, La Fayette.

 

All that aside though, I think the next class I’m going to focus on is the Federation class Dreadnought.  This, then Procyon (or whatever I decide to call it) and that should be it for TOS stuff.

 

Jolan Tru

Larson Class Destroyer

Good morning all!  As promised, here is my finished writeup on the Larson class.

 

Larson class Destroyer

 

Expanding a little bit on what I said previously and in the Editor’s Annotations there at the end, you can divide this into roughly three sections: the Four Years War, a change in Starfleet shipbuilding strategy and the Demand of Honor/conclusion (DoH being the name of the FASA supplement I alluded to in a previous post.

While I can’t make any definitive statements regarding the class, as after all, it does get a Linear Warp-era upgrade, I think one of the important take-aways is the fact that this is where/when the whole concept of the Destroyer and its place in the overall fleet changes.

At the outset of the Class I era, Starfleet builds Saladin and intends that to be a catch-all platform to handle all manner of defensive/offensive related tasks.  Of course, Saladin doesn’t quite work and so then we get Larson.  By the end of the war though, Kiaga establishes itself as the go-to platform to handle those tasks, while more routine ones are increasingly given to the larger Surya and Coventry class Frigates.  This starts a pattern that accelerates into the Linear Warp era with the proliferation of Frigates, Cruisers and assorted Patrol Combatants and by the time we get to the DS9/VOY/Future period, things have come full circle.  Defiant is the only Destroyer in the fleet, with a Corvette class or two and perhaps some examples of the Sabre class Scout joining it on the low end of the size bracket while Cruisers remain secure as the centerpieces of fleet strategy.

 

At some point once I finish the Antares, I’ll have to go back and rewrite Kiaga just to make all this clear.  As far as Larson is concerned though, in the Linear Warp/TMP era, she’ll just be there to boost the fleet’s numbers vis-a-vis the Klingons–am not expecting there to be much for me to write about once we get to that point.

 

I’ve got a few other things to take care of today, so I’ll leave you with this.  Hope you all have a good weekend and happy reading.

 

Live Long and Prosper.

Antares Class Musings (Sensor Ranges)

Gahh.  Already just barely into my coverage of the Antares class Surveyor and already I’ve hit a brick wall – sensor ranges.

1 Parsec (3.27 light years) is implied to be the maximum sensor range of the Constitution Class in TOS (courtesy of Memory Alpha) and the TNG Technical Manual gives a maximum sensor range figure of 17 light years for the Galaxy class.   None of the reference material I have nor anything I’ve found online has been able to give an even hypothetical figure for any other ship class.

 

Really, this isn’t too big of a deal.  Antares is the only TOS Surveyor/Science Vessel I plan on doing and the only other class where a specific figure would be relevant is Akula (as a Scout/Early Warning platform).  Nevertheless, going forward, I feel that establishing some broad era-specific ranges might be helpful.

 

TOS: 1.5LY (Daedalus) – 5.5LY (Federation)

The Federation class DN is the largest and most powerful ship of the era, so obviously, it will take the spot at the top.  With Constitution at 3.27LY, I think a range of 3.85 for Pyotr Velikiy, 4.3 for Akula (appropriate, given its mission) and 4.8 for Antares works out well, leaving plenty of wiggle room should I decide to get more detailed with other classes.

 

TMP: 6.0LY (La Fayette) – 12.3LY (Arizona)

Moving into the Linear Warp era is  all about new technologies and more power.  Though La Fayette comes in later as a design that uses clear Excelsior aesthetics, I’m pretty sure this is the smallest one I’ve come up with in this era.  Arizona on the other hand is the largest and I think 12.3 is a good range that leaves plenty of room to move into the Lost Era and then TNG proper.  I’ll peg Oberth at 8.0 owing to the ‘basic’ design and small size, Enterprise at 9.4, Tikopai (the large exploratory/scientificly focused one-off) at 9.8, Akula II at 10.3 and Excelsior at 11.5
TNG: 16.0 (Nebula-std), 17.0 (Galaxy)

The various Lost Era designs can stay close together I think, say between 13 and 15LY or somewhere in that area.  From TNG forward then, Galaxy and Nebula will be the baselines and all ships from that point forward, even smaller ones like Intrepid will jump from there (specialized ones like Akira or Steamrunner could possible exceed Galaxy/Nebula figures as well………..like I said though, mentioning them isn’t going to be relevant to *every* class)

 

Larson, ‘Admiral’ Jose Mendez and 6 vs 3

Hey all, wanted to give you a bit of a quick update.  I’ve finished the text for the Larson class and will *hopefully* get everything squared away and uploaded as a PDF on Saturday.    If MS Word ’16 that I have on my work PC worked like this version of MS Word on my Mac does, I could have it done sooner (if they gave me Adobe InDesign on my work machine, I’d add it to my CC subscription and there would also be no problem).  Alas, it will just have to wait.

 

At the risk of repeating myself when I make my next update after everything is finished and posted, Larson’s history follows a fairly standard path.  There’s the background on events that prompted the need for another Destroyer and then its wartime history.  I was just going to tie everything up with a vague paragraph or two about how it finished out the Class I era (the 2250’s – 60’s) rather quietly and then leave it at that, before I thought to go back through my FASA archives to check and see if there was anything I could mention.  Lo and behold there was.  I’ll save the details of that whole scenario (that involves the Gorn) for my next update, but suffice it to say, I think it does well to balance things out.  The one bit I will let you in on concerns Jose Mendez from “The Menagerie”.

This scenario, taking place roughly 2 years after that episode (2269), mentions that Mendez is now an Admiral (who briefs the characters on the situation at hand).  I checked Memory Beta and there is one TOS novel that mentions him as an Admiral (Garth of Izar), so I figured why not go with that?  It’s not like he’s ever going to pop up again in my own personal interpretation of the universe.

 

Aside from that, I’m pretty much dead set now on revising the Constitution class now to include an armament of six phaser banks instead of three.  I still love the schematics by Neale “Vance” Davidson, but there absolutely has to be some differentiation between Destroyers, Frigates and Cruisers.  Changing the Constitution class History I wrote up and then re-uploading it won’t be that much trouble.  Another thing though with that I’m going to have to change is the deadweight tonnage.  I’m not sure where I got the figures that I used, but they are definitely inconsistent with some of my more recent publications, like Surya/Coventry and Pyotr Velikiy – for which I relied on the Hobbyist’s Guide……..

 

I’m not sure if I’ll have the motivation to start anything new tomorrow morning at work (mornings typically being my most productive time at work when I have the most energy), or Saturday either (Saturdays being a bit busier for me now), but I do know for sure that I want to get away from ships of war and focus on my own ‘Antares‘ class (I mentioned this as being a surveyor in an update or two before).  So I’ll just have to let those thoughts percolate and write down the thoughts as they come.

 

 

Q’apla!

 

Kearsarge & the Klingons as Bogeymen

Hey all, finally have another update for you guys.

 

If you couldn’t tell by the title, it’s the Kearsarge class, a Light Cruiser from Star Fleet Battles (SFB).  Because it’s not a FASA creation, it doesn’t necessarily have any sort of rich history or a sort of interesting background like many others and so in most everything I’ve written up to this point, I have it coming into being in 2240.

 

Referring back to the Hobbyist’s Guide……. as I often do though has refreshed my perspective and given me a new angle from which to expand upon.  In the early decades of the 23rd Century as Starfleet and the Class I program were still finding their footings, the Klingons  held the upper hand in terms of strict numbers.  The fleet’s shipbuilding was still biased towards Cruisers and other vessels with a scientific or exploratory bias.  To keep from being totally overrun, they needed numbers though (and a more-than-decent semblance of capability).  That’s where Kearsarge comes in.

In many ways, if you continue on with this line of thinking, the resulting explosion of defensive/offensive oriented ship classes in following years, from Kiaga and Decatur/Belknap to Akyazi and the multitude of Dreadnought classes can all be traced back to Kearsarge.  With the Klingons as the ‘boogeymen’ in a sense, Starfleet went off the deep-end in some ways, in ensuring that they not only had enough ships, but enough of the right types of ships to defend Federation territory and interests.

This continues on into the 24th Century too.  The Korolev and Akira classes are tough, hardy compliments to more ‘mainline’ classes like Ambassador and Galaxy, while Defiant is more or less a 24th century incarnation of Kiaga or Akyazi.  One could even make the case that Prometheus, being the newest such defensive/offensive oriented class, is the current heir of the Kearsarge legacy.

 

Kearsarge class

 

With my motivation being a bit off-kilter, I had the writing and such done for a while, but just couldn’t summon enough to finish it off (with the specs, schematics etc).  So with that being what it was, I started work on my next writeup covering the Larson class Destroyer.  With it about a quarter to half done already, I expect that the writing will proceed quickly.  I’ll cover its wartime service in the same semi-broad way as I did with Kearsarge and keep the description of its post-war service brief, perhaps offering up a few musings on the future of the Destroyer in Starfleet or something like that (unless I can unearth a decent FASA adventure – most of those don’t come into play until the TMP era though).

 

Looking forward even further, there’s Marklin and Akula to cover and then perhaps Baton Rouge 3.0 as well (modifying the text to account for the reputation/history I’ve given it in subsequent writeups).  Provided that I don’t get the itch to go back and do something like DY-X (this thing), this will conclude my ‘wartime coverage’ and I can finally move into the ‘cold war’ or ‘golden’ era of the 2250’s and 60’s with the Antares class Surveyor (right here), the infamous Federation class Dreadnought  and whatever other classes I can’t think of right now.

 

Jolan Tru

 

Loknar

Hello again all, am back with an update once more.  If it weren’t for the normal issues of motivation combined with a bit of RL interference, I would’ve had this finished and out about two weeks ago, but oh well.

I made one final update to my computer setup here at home and that’s a transition from the low profile ‘modern’ keyboards like this Apple one I had been using, to the word of mechanical keyboards (with their pseudo-old school typing feel/aesthetic).  There aren’t many out there that are Mac-focused, let alone Mac-focused and not hideously expensive, but I picked this one up off of Amazon for $100 (still reasonable IMO) about two weeks ago now and have grown to love the feel/sound (though it did take some getting used to for my wrists lol).  I have a similar one coming for my PC (not that I type much on that, will be interesting to see how it performs gaming-wise) and then because these are still new to me, I ordered a completely different one for use at work (since I do just as much, if not more typing there).

All that aside, it’s made typing this out a much more satisfying experience IMO.  As I said above, issues of motivation have bogged me down as of late, but I managed to finally get Loknar done.  Aside from the usual overview/examination of the design/engineering, the history is made up of three parts–the class’ small role in the Four Years War, events of Operation Vanguard and then its brief participation in the ‘Kzinti Incursion’.  I didn’t bother sifting through my FASA resources to find any further filler material (the only Loknar-focused one I know of–“Decision At Midnight”–takes place in the 2270’s) and so this is rather short in comparison to Surya/Coventry.

Loknar class Frigate

 

What’s next?  Well, both Kearsarge and Larson have been on my mind.  Kearsarge is a SFB (Star Fleet Battles) design and lacks any the kind of colorful history certain FASA designs have.  Larson on the other hand is a FASA design, though one that has scant mention outside of the “Demand of Honor” and “White Flame” supplements (taking place in the late 2260’s).  In reading the Hobbyist’s Guide…….. they also enter service in different decades–Kearsarge in the early 2230’s (competing a bit with Loknar); Larson in the 2240’s (replacing Saladin but bringing up new questions for Starfleet).  I’m not necessarily enamored with the idea of having two separate publications come out short (I did enjoy crafting the long histories of recent classes like Pyotr Velikiy and Surya/Coventry), but then again, keeping a long term view in mind, doing them individually would make things easier when the time comes to release my TOS era compilation.  So who knows?

I did take some time off coming up, in addition to this next weekend I have the 19th-22nd to myself and only have to work a half day on the 23rd, so hopefully if I can get some momentum going and find some motivation, I’ll have something up for Christmas.

 

Live Long and Prosper