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Ted C

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Ted C last won the day on May 23 2013

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About Ted C

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  1. Fair enough, but is it really all that unusual to see an extreme example used to illustrate a point?
  2. I think his point was more that having the best (and most expensive) equipment is not always in your favor situationally. On 9/11, having a dozen or more P-51s in the air would have been more useful than a few F-16s on the ground, because on that day, the P-51s could have intercepted the hijacked planes and shot them down. It goes without saying that modern jets would obliterate P-51s in a fight.
  3. I'm with you on 1: if all you can do by showing up is to just become an additional loss, you might as well not show up at all. Brian did argue, however, that a government that makes no effort to protect it's citizens, even if it's unlikely to succeed, is going to quickly lose favor with the populace. 2 deals with effective use of resources. In WW2, Germany kept trying to design and build newer and better tanks and planes, while the Allies concentrated on cranking out more of the tanks and planes they already had (making occasional tweaks where they could, such as figuring out how to up-gun the Sherman). It worked out for the Allies, obviously.
  4. So, have we got a consensus? Looks like the Stormtroopers will go in armed, get in a fight, and be forced to retreat just because of the number of xenos. It will be a hard retreat for them, since we haven't identified an armored vehicle that would work in this situation. There's a good chance they'll damage the reactor cooling system with blaster fire, too. They may lose the shuttle, but even if they do, they should be able to get backup within hours, so the survivors of the first attack can probably be evacuated without further casualties whether they lose the shuttle or not. If there's a suggestion that some xeno larvae be kept for study, the Stormtroopers will probably call it in and just go with whatever their chain of command says to do, so it's probably not that big of a conflict.
  5. The Falcon arrived in what Han described as a "meteor shower". The debris he encountered was, to the best of my memory, small, jagged, and low density. It got less dense as they approached the Death Star, which makes sense, as the debris field was expanding away from its point of origin.
  6. Oh, I think you can make the case that fighters can generally get under the standard combat shields of capital ships. I do NOT think that getting through a ship's shields is a matter of certainty in all situations. And I still think the TradeFed control ship is a huge sore thumb. If slipping through shields is standard combat doctrine for fighters attacking a capital ship, why weren't the Naboo fighters doing it? Even if you've found the rule, you have to account for the exception.
  7. It's pretty much a case of trying to read too much into Lyta's statement. Arkatta 7 ceased to be a populated planet, obviously, but that doesn't require it to become an asteroid field.
  8. I wonder if all of the old BabTech haters will come out for this one.
  9. What about the ray shield from ROTS? We know you can't just walk out of that, and ANH describes ray shielding around the exhaust port opening. And again, why aren't there specialized shield-penetrating missiles that just slow down enough before impact to ease through the shield? That would be a painfully obvious countermeasure if merely slowing down was all that was required to get through any shield. Different shields appear to be designed for different purposes, and are permeable to different things to different degrees. Proton torpedoes would go through the ray shield around the exhaust port, but laser/blaster bolts would not, yet proton torpedoes did not penetrate the shields of the TradeFed control ship. Some shields are constantly visible, others are not. This can't be simplified to "you can go through any shield if you just slow down".
  10. Presumably the landing bay shield IS protective, since you don't want enemies flying into your landing bay. Despite Obi-Wan's statement about the "shields" being up, though, it's pretty obvious that at least some of the Invisible Hand's shields were down, as Anakin was able to shoot out the landing bay's shield generator before he got close to the ship. The video doesn't address the problem of The Phantom Menace, in which the commander of the droid control ship felt that "nothing can penetrate our shields", presumably referring to the weapons on the Naboo fighters. Why would he make a comment like that if it was routine for fighters to try to slip through shields at low relative speed so they could directly attack the target's hull? I'm not convinced that the Millenium Falcon landing on an ISD hull in The Empire Strikes Back makes a case for slipping through the shield. If the shield is pretty tight to the hull, the Falcon's landing claw could presumably just grab onto the shield itself where it wraps around some protrusion (ISD hulls are obviously not very smooth). It's obvious that some types of shields are permeable to various things to varying degrees, but I don't think that "fighters can fly through any defensive shield if they're going slow enough" is an adequate explanation for everything that's going on.
  11. So, using probe droids and sensors, the Stormtroopers find most of the colonists under the processing plant, gestating aliens. What would they do? Go in to extract the colonists? Write them off and see if some handy-dandy nerve gas works? Call in the situation and get reinforcements? The Marines were limited by the speed of communications and the long delay to get any kind of assistance. The Empire isn't nearly as limited.
  12. I don't know how difficult it is to get in or out of Stormtrooper armor. The helmet certainly comes off easily enough. The probe droids and sensor packages available to the Stormtroopers look like they might well outperform tricorders. I wouldn't be surprised if the Empire resorted to chemical weapons to eliminate a xenomorph infestation. It would be better than destroying an expensive facility, and they have the probes to enter the plant and verify whether it works. That would likely require calling for backup, though; I don't think that sort of stuff would be standard equipment for a platoon.
  13. I think we've pretty much concluded that a blaster rifle probably has all the same problems as a pulse rifle. Any setting sufficient to seriously deter xenomorphs is probably also sufficient to damage the reactor cooling system and spray acidic blood all over the place. I'm not sure if a stormtrooper platoon would have alternative weapons. They certainly have the technology for things like flame-throwers, but I don't know if they're standard issue. I believe you said that The Clone Wars shows that stormtrooper armor would not be particularly resistant to acid. None the less, I think it offers some important protection. Recall that Hicks was sprayed with acid in the colony elevator while trying to escape with Ripley. The acid was burning through his armored chest plate, but it took long enough that he was able to remove the armor before taking serious damage himself. Similarly, stormtrooper armor should buy time for anyone sprayed with the acid. The Empire certainly has no shortage of armored vehicles, but all of the ones I've seen appear to be too big to fit in a ship that would be used to deliver a platoon of 12-20 men to investigate this situation. If no one else can think of one, we'll have to assume that the stormtroopers won't have armored support in this particular situation. The Empire will have to land their shuttle to deploy the platoon, but it should be able to take off again and stay airborne or in orbit easily, eliminating the risk of a xenomorph getting on board because someone opened the ramp to go pee. The shuttle would get to LV-426 much sooner than the Sulaco did. Interstellar travel time for the Sulaco is apparently weeks, whereas an Imperial shuttle would arrive in hours. The Empire has the potential to rescue some colonists by the time they get to the colony, unlike the Marines, who didn't arrive until all of the colonists except Newt were already dead or gestating aliens. That means that the number of aliens they're likely to face is probably smaller. The Empire has access to droids, of course. I believe you mentioned something about recon droids being pretty standard kit for troopers in The Clone Wars. Recon droids would give Stormtroopers a big advantage in preparation for mounting a rescue mission into the nest. I'm thinking that Stormtroopers might perform a bit better in an ambush in the nest than the Marines. They're clones who have been optimized and conditioned for combat, so I think they're less likely to lose their cool under pressure. Their commander, even if green, will certainly at least know his chain of command, so if he loses his 2nd, he'll immediately know who is next in line, and he won't freeze if things start going sour. Finally, the Empire is pretty ruthless, so if it doesn't look like saving the colonists is a viable option, they'll be perfectly content to take off and obliterate the site from orbit. Due to their interstellar travel speed and real-time interstellar communications, they also have the option to call for backup (something that the Federation would also have). The Marines were looking at weeks for help to arrive. The Federation force would have to hold out for days. A Stormtrooper unit could get backup within hours. Finally, a "Burke" is a pretty realistic possibility. Of course, if his treachery were discovered, the Stormtroopers would undoubtedly kill him out of hand.
  14. Possible explanations: As you noted, the Death Star itself may have kept some of the debris from escaping. Some of the debris would be naturally thrown on a trajectory to put it in orbit around the sun. Alderaan could have had one or more natural satellites that put some of the debris back onto a solar orbit path. The Death Star lingered in the vicinity. If there were other populated planets in the system, they may have been intentionally redirecting debris to keep those other planets from being affected. While willing to destroy Alderaan, other local settlements presumably still pay taxes, so having them destroyed by asteroid debris would be counterproductive. Besides, they're witnesses who can spread the word of the Death Star's power.
  15. Uneven distribution of the energy through the planet's mass and inefficiences of heat transfer will mean that not all of the planet's chunks will absorb enough heat to vaporize.