Comstar Interdiction

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Nimon
07/28/05 02:23 PM
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Here is another curiousity I have had. Davion used the action ComStar used (the HPG Interdiction) as a reason to stop the war. But I was reading where Hanse was using Jump ships as a 'Pony Express' to get orders to the front lines.

The Question I have is, was the interdiction as devestating to the Fed Suns as some would be lead to belive?
CrayModerator
07/29/05 06:06 AM
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Quote:

The Question I have is, was the interdiction as devestating to the Fed Suns as some would be lead to belive?




For the civilian economy, yes, the interdiction sucked ass. Imagine shutting down all interstate telecommunications in the US for a year.

Quote:

But I was reading where Hanse was using Jump ships as a 'Pony Express' to get orders to the front lines.




A poor substitute for HPGs.

Those jumpships and "black box" communications were a poor replacement for HPGs. It's like going from today's modern telecommunications to a few telegraph lines and human couriers. Orders can still be delivered, but the flow of intelligence (like where the Combine was attacking along their border with Davion, or where AFFS units were in the Confederation) to central HQ evaporated. Orders that could go out in hours *to every AFFS unit along the front* now took weeks just to get to front line HQs.

The AFFS wasn't stymied too badly in the short term *on the Capellan front* because it had its troops already positioned, plans already delivered, supplies handy, and a foe that was already broken. The AFFS only needed to obey one of Patton's sayings, "When in doubt, attack!" to win.

But it was virtually blind, deaf, and dumb against Kuritans. It would take weeks for courier messages to alert even regional HQs of a counter-attack. Local defenders would not be able to call for help nearly as rapidly as they had in the past. Regional defenses would have trouble pinpointing the attacks and responding to them.
Mike Miller, Materials Engineer

Disclaimer: Anything stated in this post is unofficial and non-canon unless directly quoted from a published book. Random internet musings of a BattleTech writer are not canon.
Karagin
07/29/05 09:26 AM
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SO a jumpship jumping into a system sending the message via tightbeam commo isn't going to be any faster then an HPG?

Thought the HPG worked off the same theory as the KF Drives...

The Black Boxes worked well enough and given time the Pony Express system would have started to work much better as the bugs got worked out.

Your compairison doesn't really work out, the system you meantioned only adds times, it doesn't prevent infromation from moving to HQ to HQ. Also most units have can set of orders to deal with things like commo lost or being cut off from higher HQs, so the issue would only become damaging when more time then a few months have pasted. Spies and agents would still have ways of getting the info out and scout jumpships would already be use to operating in a blind and thus still able to send their data out to then needed points. Also the AFFS would have plans in place to deal with things like this, if they didn't well that's simply bad writting on the part of the authors and TPTW. Since all of the houses had issues with ComStar and didn't trust them at all.
Karagin

Given time and plenty of paper, a philosopher can prove anything.
CrayModerator
07/29/05 10:04 AM
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Quote:

SO a jumpship jumping into a system sending the message via tightbeam commo isn't going to be any faster then an HPG?

Thought the HPG worked off the same theory as the KF Drives...




There's a similarity in underlying principles, but there are some very practical differences.

An A-rated HPG transmits messages several times a day at a distance of 50 light-years. A 3030-era jumpship can jump once a week to a distance of 30 light-years.

For a commander 250 light-years from the front (Hanse in the Fox's Den on New Avalon commanding the invasion of the Capellan Confederation), a chain of A-rated HPGs can deliver information one-way in about 30 hours (or much less if hurried). A single courier jumpship would take 9 weeks to make the same delivery. That's a factor of 50 difference in communication speed. In fact, a very close analogy would be comparing the delivery speed of an 18th Century courier sailing ship to a 20th Century FedEx jet liner.

(30 years after the Fourth Succession, Katherine Steiner-Davion demonstrated the vast superiority of HPGs over other communication systems: she paid for a chain of HPGs to be established between New Avalon and Tharkad - 500, 600 light years? - that supported real-time communication between the two planets. A jumpship courier would take 15-20 weeks to cover that distance. The Clans arrange similar circuits between the Clan home worlds and the Inner Sphere Invasion Corridor, a distance of about 1000 light-years, which would be 33 weeks by normal jumpship, 16 weeks with a LF battery.)

Attempting to match the transmission rate of a single A-rated HPG with jumpships would call for 100 or more courier jumpships, and there were HPGs (A- or B-rated) on every planet in the FS or CC. The couriers needed to replace them reach ludicrous numbers, so when the HPGs became unavailable due to the Interdiction, ALL communications couldn't just be restored with jumpships. The AFFS was already hurting its economy by forcing large numbers civilian jumpships into military service just for logistics purposes. It didn't have many jumpships to spare for courier duty, so the AFFS's front line communications necessarily shrunk a great deal. The civilian interstellar communications network.

Quote:

Your compairison doesn't really work out, the system you meantioned only adds times, it doesn't prevent infromation from moving to HQ to HQ.




Correct, it doesn't stop, it just slows down. But it slowed from days to months and according to your post, communication delays in terms of months would become damaging. Which is just what happened in the 4th Succession War - the delays became damaging enough that the Federated Suns halted its offensive.

There's also the civilian damage being wrought by the Interdiction. Don't forget that.

Quote:

Also the AFFS would have plans in place to deal with things like this




The AFFS did have plans in place, and the writers did demonstrate those plans in action: the courier jumpships and black boxes. Just because you're overestimating the performance of the 3030-era black boxes and courier jumpships doesn't mean the writers made a mistake with the effects of the Interdiction.
Mike Miller, Materials Engineer

Disclaimer: Anything stated in this post is unofficial and non-canon unless directly quoted from a published book. Random internet musings of a BattleTech writer are not canon.
Nimon
07/29/05 11:01 AM
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Actually I was under the impression that Hanse took the cease fire while he got with Steiner and mass preoduced their own HPG for military use. But not sure if that was ever done (The house book Steiner said they had working HPG technology).
Nimon
07/29/05 11:04 AM
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Not sure I follow this, your assuming that the jump ship recharges

the Pony express was there are jump ships in each system, you jump in, transmit data to a already charged jump ship, then recharge awaiting the next message coming back. And as I understood it, the jump took no time at all as you slipped into a quasi space where time did not exist sort of so the jump was basically instantanous.

Granted this would demand HUGE jump ship resources to deliver a message but that is how I thought the pony express was set up.
Karagin
07/29/05 12:39 PM
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Not overestimating anything, I am pointing out that the idea that ANY of the Houses would not have a major back up plan to get around a ComStar interdiction is nuts. Canned Orders, preplanned supply depots etc...all would keep things under control and moving as would jumpships coming in with new supplies, thus order still could reach the troops and while they might be slower in getting them, well that wouldn't be anything new since in BT unlike other Sci-fi settings, no one has istant commo with anyone. Even HPGs take time to get messages to their intented distanation.

And I am willing to bet if the AFFS was up to speed on dealing with things like the Pony Express setup via wargames and other training then losing the HPGs wouldn't be that big of deal with for them overall. Civilan side of the house...beyond big business most folks are focused on their planets, with some comments or ideas of the events on others, yes trade would and might suffer, but again not in the or level that would force Davion to stop as quick as we are lead to believe. Sorry Cray but I don't buy the whole short span of time of the Interdiction and boom he stops his armies.

And yes the writers made mistakes, jumpships carrying message can make it to the needed areas in reasonable amounts of time to allow the AFFS to keep pushing forward, granted at a slower pace but still moving.
Karagin

Given time and plenty of paper, a philosopher can prove anything.
Karagin
07/29/05 12:40 PM
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They were and most likely still are, but they did have some of the black boxes that are compared to fax machines that seemed to be around during the Star League time frame, Katarina (the original) shared what she found with Hanse when they allied.
Karagin

Given time and plenty of paper, a philosopher can prove anything.
Karagin
07/29/05 12:46 PM
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You are on the right track and with planning and training via military excerises, like the ones Hanses had in place BEFORE the events of the 4th War, would make something like easier and managable, the commanders would know what was expected of them and they would have sealed orders that would be openned at timeframe A or B as well pre-canned/planned orders that would be setup to deal with these kind of things.

And yes there woud be a huge demand on the jumpship assets, but again some simple prior planning would work well enough and allow, while, slower transfer of data both forward and back to the both HQs. And the messages would be a lot safer given that most aren't going to attack a jumpship out right.
Karagin

Given time and plenty of paper, a philosopher can prove anything.
Nimon
07/29/05 01:11 PM
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The problem with the Jumpship demands is was Cray pointed out

It would lead to slower response time by Hanse, and that could have costed him the whole DC front.
Karagin
07/29/05 03:44 PM
63.157.234.233

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Maybe maybe not. Again it depends on how the commanders on the front lines react and act.
Karagin

Given time and plenty of paper, a philosopher can prove anything.
Greyslayer
07/29/05 03:51 PM
216.14.198.54

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pony express = command circuit in battletech. A common enough occurance.

Comstar did lose out a bit in this, during this time they had absolutely no intel as well since they probably skimmed davion communications as much as possible for information, how quickly were the opposing houses informed of this if at all also gives a moderation to the military reaction of the houses, they too had no information of military strengths along the border or what forces would be needed to take target... they could change and without jumpship couriers themselves they would be going in completely blind.... in fact if you had planned for this contingency it would be a perfect time to launch an attack from the blockaded space as noone would know where your military build up would be coming from. Not being entirely prepared for it though will still lead to losses.
CrayModerator
07/29/05 11:04 PM
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Quote:

It would lead to slower response time by Hanse, and that could have costed him the whole DC front.




Not the whole Davion front. The Combine was getting trampled by the "thundering herd" on the Lyran front and thus couldn't split its attention to threaten the entire Davion border or even a large portion.

But FS defense was certainly hampered by the Interdiction where the Combine got around to attacking - fortunately for the Federated Suns, Takashi was a moron and got sidetracked.
Mike Miller, Materials Engineer

Disclaimer: Anything stated in this post is unofficial and non-canon unless directly quoted from a published book. Random internet musings of a BattleTech writer are not canon.
Nightward
07/30/05 06:52 AM
203.173.21.19

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Sigh.

Hanse is not TEH PNZORS!!11. He's good, but not God.

First off, the "Pony Express" assumes you've got JumpShips available. Read the books; Hanse talks about the difficulty of moving his wife around on a Command Circuit, and he'd be diverting substantial resources to do that.

Since most of the interior OZs were stripped of military JumpShips to support the war, you're looking at civillian ships to do the job. Most merchant spacefarers aren't going to be too happy about being press-ganged into a war effort.

The JumpShip assets that would allow for a functional "Pony Express" are all tied up on the front.

Black Boxes were an option, but a limited one as compared to HPG transmissions.

Hanse could care less about the civilians. It's the rich and powerful who whined the loadest when they lost their tech toys and HPG transmissions, and those are the people Hanse needs on-side. Duke Hasek-Davion was bad enough. Want to think about what could have happened if other March Lords had gone rogue? The Sandovals didn't seem too impressed with Hanse...
Yea, verily. Let it be known far and wide that Nightward loathes MW: DA. Indeed, it is with the BURNING ANIMUS OF A THOUSAND SUNS that he doth rage against it with.
Karagin
07/30/05 09:16 AM
65.140.156.10

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Sandoval would have been smiling happly for weeks and years, the AFFS were attacking the Dragon, to him (Sandoval) that is all that matters. He wouldn't do anything to move against Hanse as long as the war was being fought mainly on Combine worlds.

Hasek was a pawn being played by both sides and he wasn't in any postion to do much of anything. The other March Lords...which ones? Don't recall seeing anything on them in any of the Davion books...
Karagin

Given time and plenty of paper, a philosopher can prove anything.
Toontje
08/02/05 03:43 AM
84.24.165.226

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Quote:

Not overestimating anything, I am pointing out that the idea that ANY of the Houses would not have a major back up plan to get around a ComStar interdiction is nuts. Canned Orders, preplanned supply depots etc...all would keep things under control and moving as would jumpships coming in with new supplies, thus order still could reach the troops and while they might be slower in getting them, well that wouldn't be anything new since in BT unlike other Sci-fi settings, no one has istant commo with anyone. Even HPGs take time to get messages to their intented distanation.





With canned orders, frontline commanders can do Act One, but for Act Two, it's nice to know that the left flank did not archieve their objective, and you moving further forward will expose your flank/rear as well as leave a hole in the line, where enemy units might pour trough to get at your supply depots and do other rear-area nuisance.
IIRC that can be seen from the Waves in 4th SW, were these not a month or 2 apart? Leaves time for minimal repairs, resupply, and gather the needed information on own and enemy encoutered strengths. It's nice to know the whole area had only garrison units for defence, and you KNOW the last planet to be attacked will have the frontline unit reported in the area, and can prepare to that.

All this info to be assembled, processed, and returned to the frontline commanders even from regional HQ, takes quite some comm and time. Things just work a lot faster if you can communicate using HPG.
Rather to blow up, then.
religon
08/26/05 10:05 AM
24.225.70.5

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Cray makes a strong case which leads to a question I have...

Quote:

An A-rated HPG transmits messages several times a day at a distance of 50 light-years. A 3030-era jumpship can jump once a week to a distance of 30 light-years.

For a commander 250 light-years from the front (Hanse in the Fox's Den on New Avalon commanding the invasion of the Capellan Confederation), a chain of A-rated HPGs can deliver information one-way in about 30 hours (or much less if hurried). A single courier jumpship would take 9 weeks to make the same delivery. That's a factor of 50 difference in communication speed. In fact, a very close analogy would be comparing the delivery speed of an 18th Century courier sailing ship to a 20th Century FedEx jet liner.

(30 years after the Fourth Succession, Katherine Steiner-Davion demonstrated the vast superiority of HPGs over other communication systems: she paid for a chain of HPGs to be established between New Avalon and Tharkad - 500, 600 light years? - that supported real-time communication between the two planets. A jumpship courier would take 15-20 weeks to cover that distance. The Clans arrange similar circuits between the Clan home worlds and the Inner Sphere Invasion Corridor, a distance of about 1000 light-years, which would be 33 weeks by normal jumpship, 16 weeks with a LF battery.)

Attempting to match the transmission rate of a single A-rated HPG with jumpships would call for 100 or more courier jumpships, and there were HPGs (A- or B-rated) on every planet in the FS or CC. The couriers needed to replace them reach ludicrous numbers, so when the HPGs became unavailable due to the Interdiction, ALL communications couldn't just be restored with jumpships. The AFFS was already hurting its economy by forcing large numbers civilian jumpships into military service just for logistics purposes. It didn't have many jumpships to spare for courier duty, so the AFFS's front line communications necessarily shrunk a great deal. The civilian interstellar communications network.






With a recharge time of one week, and the Dropship time it takes to land on a planet (3-21 days roughly from the Liao handbook), has it bothered anyone else that the math of transportation inhibits game play?

For instance, to relocate from Solaris VII to another planet can take months. While playing a campaign, this makes more than 2-3 battles per year on different planets nearly impossible. This type of time delay means to play 5-10 battles with the same unit, the battles are forced to all occur on the same planet. While the science of Battletech space travel is much more sound than most Sci-Fi, these long times may inhibit game play where you wish for "The Super BattleTech Possee" to fight on 12 planets during the war of 3039. You know..."Hoth with Battlemechs Battle", the "Battle for the Atoll on the Water World", and "The Battle of the Planet with Triple-Gravity".

Even with command circuits, the type of royal tours of the dominion as stated in the House books (Jospeh Cameron's 16th birthday tour, the tour Janos Marik made in 2991, and another where a ruler vistis every planet of one the Successor States) would take years ... or many decades to visit hundreds of planets. The idea of one of the sourcebooks for a ruler to visit all the planets of the realm in a single year can't really occur with the transporation times involved.

Based on an average 4-day dropship time each way and dismissing Jumpship recharge times, to visit 100 planets for 2-day tours would take about 3 years. (All the Star Leauge planets would take about 55 years with 80% of this time in a dropship.)

Has anyone found a satisfying compromise or explaination to allow for dynamic planet-hopping for campaign play with upsetting the pseudo-science of Jumpship/Dropship transportation?


fini.
Wraith
08/26/05 11:02 AM
130.76.96.17

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Quote:

Quote:

The Clans arrange similar circuits between the Clan home worlds and the Inner Sphere Invasion Corridor, a distance of about 1000 light-years, which would be 33 weeks by normal jumpship, 16 weeks with a LF battery.)







Remember, when charging, a JS can only charge its KF or LF. If you try hotcharging one with the engine, bad things are likely to happen. The advantage of a LF battery is that if you jump into a hot system, you can get out if there's an enemy warship bearing down on you, they don't really speed up transportation, other than letting you make the last 2 jumps one after the other if you're willing to use up your battery before getting into the destination system.
-Wraith
Toontje
08/26/05 02:02 PM
84.24.165.226

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Quote:


Based on an average 4-day dropship time each way and dismissing Jumpship recharge times, to visit 100 planets for 2-day tours would take about 3 years. (All the Star Leauge planets would take about 55 years with 80% of this time in a dropship.)

Has anyone found a satisfying compromise or explaination to allow for dynamic planet-hopping for campaign play with upsetting the pseudo-science of Jumpship/Dropship transportation?


fini.




1/sqrt(2) of the travel time in-system can be scrapped at double burn. Another explanation: Pirate points. Should get traveling in-system down to 0.5, 1 day.

But I think if it's said all planets were visited, it more or less means all important key planets in a region. Who cares wether planet Redneck with 20 inhabitants gets visited?
Rather to blow up, then.
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