Space Empires. The perils of deep space (part 2 of 2)
Droids Confederation (yellow): Alex Isabelle
Shogunate of the Stars (green): Andrea Benassi
Earth’s Military Junta (blue): AI
Space Troglodytes (red): AI
First part: click.
The droids and the shogunate are taking a breath. The fleet of primitive Space Troglodytes was narrowly defeated in the skies of Kronos. The Alliance colonies, as well as the headquarters of the Galactic Capital, are safe.
Having considered that the war is not lost but is also far from being won, the Droids launch an unfortunate colonial adventure on the alien planet Deneb, finding in its defenders a great challenge. The indigenous people of the planet, in fact, manage to prepare a decidedly tenacious defense: the fleet almost destroys the landing ships of the Droids. Furthermore, once on the ground, the militia proove to be dearly, making the conquest of the planet a real via crucis for the colonial force. At the end of this slaughter, the soldier droids still manage to establish a federal government on this planet, and Deneb becomes part of the Droid Confederacy. Among other things, having taken control of the planet by means of armed troops allows the Droids to take possession of some technological projects of the Denebians that allow to enormously contain the maintenance costs of light ships. The two remaining scout ships from the beginning of the game, then (one had been destroyed in the skies of Deneb) are updated with this technology, quickly becoming a founding element of the Droid army, also due to the increased experience of their officers.
|The Shogunite fleet
This widening of the boundaries of the Shogun-Droid alliance would rebalance the game if a third fleet from the Earth, directed once again towards Draconis, did not find a third planet randomly in space, which instead happens: it is the planet Romulus, placed in a system just adjacent to those of Cygni and Aries. Conquered the planet, the chessboard then hangs decisively in the direction of the attackers. If it hadn't been for the conquest of Deneb a moment before, they would have won the war. A new plan must therefore be prepared as soon as possible, to prevent them from conquering another planet and put an end to the dispute.
Thus begins a desperate exploration of deep space, in search of other planets that can be conquered in order to expand the political-economic power of the Alliance, as happened for Deneb. Nothing is found, apart from an almost unreachable planet, very far away, located in the Centauri system, squeezed between a black hole and a supernova, and protected first by an asteroid field and then by a nebula. On the other hand, the Military Junta finds a fourth planet, Arrakis, and is preparing to attack it.
The game here is considered lost. Except that, thanks to a huge bad luck to the dice by the Junta, the fleet of Arrakis actually manages to counter that of the Earth: all the ships of the defenders are slowly eliminated, but before being shot down they manage to destroy the transports that they bring the Earthen war troops. At the end of the battle in its orbit Arrakis is therefore free and unconquered. For this sensational luck, or rather thanks to the decisive resistance offered by the fleet of Arrakis, the Shoguns and the Droids can therefore continue their galactic war.
The explorations of deep space lead to the discovery of two other Judgment Machines, again adjacent to the nebulae ring placed around the Galactic Capital, which confirms the suspicion that they were built by the ancient rulers of the Galactic Capital; these Machines, if activated, could attack the colonies of the Aries, Cygni and Romulus systems, controlled by the Junta, and possibly destroy at least a couple of those planets. This fact, however, would not make the alliance of the Capital regain political power, and therefore the Alliance opts not to activate them, keeping them as an emergency plan.
|The Logos fleet
At this point all empires enter a phase of study and preparation. Since the space has been almost completely explored, the attackers have failed to end the conflict by erecting colonies in deep space. The Military Junta then orders to devote the vast majority of funds to the research and preparation of a new, definitive, space fleet. A colonial ship is dispatched to Arrakis, but it is immediately shot down, right after landing, by a Shogunite fleet.
The Shoguns in fact assembled a group of ships, accompanied by a colonial ship, and sent it on a journey through a series of space-time folds in order to reach Arrakis, pacify it, and annex it. After having arrived they found an Earth colonial ship that had just landed on Arrakis. Destroyed just in time, it was immediately replaced with the Shogunite colonial ship. Of course, had the Earth ship developed into a full-fledged colony, the game would have been lost, but once again the alliance of the Capital managed to save the shack.
At this point, two ships with a unique design, produced by the Droids, make their debut on the board. These are B.O.R.G.s: medium-sized hull, huge shields, and an almost zero attack capacity. They have the ability to project an impenetrable shield onto other ships, effectively shielding them and preventing opponents from hitting them; in order to attack them, in fact, the other ships would first have to destroy the B.O.R.G.s that protect them. Together with the B.O.R.G.s, therefore, the ships that must be defended also leave the forges of the Droids: four boarding ships, very slow and fragile, made to steal enemy ships. The pairing of these six ships, altogether rather expensive to maintain, proves crucial in the counterattack against the Military Junta and the Troglodytes, who in the meantime send some fleets through the wormholes in order to attack the colony of Tembe, adjacent to the homeworld of the Droids. During these battles, the B.O.R.G.s fortuitously manage to destroy some enemy ships, which gives their officers a career; at the same time several enemy ships are stolen. Some are dismantled and studied in order to speed up the search; others are incorporated into the army, which further increases the already heavy maintenance costs of the Droid fleet. To address this problem, all the planets close to the Droids' home system are finally colonized, and all mining ships are upgraded so that they can suck useful material directly from the nebulae. The constitution of a dense network of cargo ships, which unites the planet of the Droids, Vasyr, with all the colonies to the mine-nebulae, crowns a project that finally makes the Droids an absolutely solid and self-sufficient economic power.
Meanwhile, the Shogun troops have approached planet Earth. After annexing Arrakis, constituting a protectorate, they proceeded to "pacify" a second adjacent planet, so as to foment their own war machine as well. Having built a spaceport directly on Arrakis, a few systems away from planet Earth, they begin to prepare for the final confrontation.
The next step is taken by the Military Junta, who finally launch the long prepared extermination fleet. Destination: Vasyr. While the Droids rush to prepare their defenses, churning out an enormous amount of fighters from their forges, the Shoguns proceed to attack planet Earth with their fleet, made up of a large number of war cruisers.
The clash is very hard, because the latter is defended by several military bases upgraded to the maximum extent. The fact is that there are only three of them, and therefore it is only a matter of time for them to be demolished. Destroyed them, the cruisers start a bombing of the planet.
|The Second Order's fleet
Despite the enormous firepower, it will take two years to demolish the structures on the planet's surface. However, the Military Junta no longer has the means to respond: the extermination fleet is allowed to continue towards Vasyr, while the administration of the Earth is gritting its teeth. Eventually, all administrative centers on Earth are destroyed.
Theoretically, at this point in the game, the extermination fleet had to be removed, but we wanted to see the final fight, so we let it go on. We deduced that the admirals of the extermination fleet, having received the news of the destruction of the Earth and of the armistice, founded a Second Order, an irreducible militarist rib that would have advocated the ideals of the Military Junta without any compromise, would have reached Vasyr and would have destroyed it, ignoring the armistice.
A few moments later, in the skies of Vasyr, the impact between their forces take place: a huge army led by a Titan ship, capable of destroying the planets, flanked by several hyper-powered warships... and the B.O.R.G.s.
The bulk of the Droid fleet is quickly eliminated: the many fighters represent a decent strike force and therefore get hit first. Soon after the spaceports, which participate in the clashes with medium-power guns, are destroyed. Subsequently, some of the boarding ships are eliminated. The latter managed to hit some of the Second Order battleships, stealing them and adding them to their forces. All remaining ships were capable of hitting the Titan and battleships with great strokes of luck, with the exception of the boarded battleships, the last remaining boarding ship, and the military base. While the stolen ships were decidedly solid and in any case few in number, these last two things were defended by the B.O.R.G.s, which therefore had to be hit at this point.
|The clash between the Logos Fleet and the Second Order.
It is much less unbalanced than it appears
Over the next few minutes of the battle, the Titan then fired three times at the B.O.R.G.s... Its cannon, capable of destroying entire planets if overloaded, could have destroyed one with each shot. However, after each of these attacks, the B.O.R.G.s' shields have always withstood the impact without ever overheating, leaving the ships practically untouched. And not only that: the crew of the BORG, after managing to eliminate one of the enemy battleships by crashing into it, reach a "legendary" level of experience, meaning that it is at this point literally no longer possible to attack those ships unless all other weaker ships, except those protected by the BORGs themselves, are destroyed.
One shot at a time this huge battle is therefore over. In total we rolled dice for half an hour. By the end of the battle, Vasyr's spaceports are completely demolished, as is most of the Droid fleet. Only one of the famous scouts who had pioneered space exploration survived to this point. As for the ships of the Second Order, several were occupied by the boarding troops, and therefore incorporated into the Droid fleet; the others, including the Titan, have been completely demolished.
Having completely eliminated the forces of the Military Junta and of the Second Order, then, only the question of the poor Troglodytes who had accompanied that subversive empire in the war remains to be resolved. A year after the elimination of the Second Order in the skies of Vasyr, the Logos fleet, that of the Droids, and the Claymore fleet, of the Shoguns, meet in Altayr's high orbit. Having destroyed the few defenses available to the Troglodytes, the Shogun cruisers immediately bomb and completely destroy the main settlements of Altair, imparting an important lesson in humility and technological superiority to its inhabitants.
After seventeen years of war, finally, the Sector returns to peace.
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|The map at the of conflict
|Data on the Droid fleets