Fleet Formations: Fascists

This Articles of War document was decrypted and translated as a study model for Echo Cluster strategists. These intelligence briefs describe employable tactics and complementary ship combinations for the Eleven Races.

The underlying purpose of Fleet Formations is to encourage commanders to consider what happens BEFORE “End Game”. We often build our fleets with one thing in mind, “Max Power, Tech 10 ships all the way. Hooyah!” Beyond theory, the majority of actions which lead to victory are done within the first 40-60 turns; moreover, eight races have their best chance of winning if they gain a significant advantage before the “Mid Game” transitions to the final slog. Those first 50+ turns can be used for more than just building ships and whipping the local indigenous populations. It’s the perfect time for Tech 1-9 to go forth and shine.

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The Balboa Quality — PART ONE

It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.” – Rocky Balboa

Rocky – (1976) screenplay by Sylvester Stallone

Energized by a recent online conversation (Commander Koski, 2022), I set out to answer the question, “What makes a good sacrificial ship?” I found a good brunch spot and filled a notebook with statistics, thoughts, and ship specifications around this topic – Yes, at that time in Earth’s history, people still used pencil and paper; this writing exercise was referred to as a scrambled brainstorm. Somewhere between the bacon and the coffee, I noted the factor which defined a good sacrificial option was, what I called, the Balboa Quality (BQ) – the ability to take a beating and deal significant damage. This article provided an overview of a system for determining the value of this type of ship. The BQ system proved capable of determining which ships were economically and militarily efficient in sacrifical situations.

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Making the Grade: Strategic Mine Laying

Due to focusing on my studies, it has been months since my last article on Christmas Planets. I have a break between semesters, so I am taking time to write an article which might help players choose which race to embrace — if you are one of those who likes to focus on just one race. This piece examines the capabilities of the eleven Echo Cluster races to control the battlefield with minefields, i.e., strategic mine laying, and it assigns a letter grade to each race based on three skill categories: long term sustainability, countermining potential, and minefield specialisation.

https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Minefield
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It’s Like Christmas – Part I

My childhood contained two Christmases I most remember. The first was spending winter in the snowy mountains of Newfoundland, Canada. — This has little relevance to the article, but it sets the mood rather well. — The second memory – and the more important glimmer of my past – was opening the best gift ever: a Nintendo Entertainment System. As I played Super Mario Bros. for the first time, I felt an odd sense of euphoria. The world filled with wonder and possibilities; and I knew I was special and super lucky to have this gift. Later in my life, this type of joy occurred three more times: finding a twenty dollar bill at an exhibition fair, winning the grand prize from a granola bar package, and receiving an orbital scan from a Planets starship above a world of indigenous Insectoids. These last moments appear as mundane but they felt like Christmas.

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Commander Koski’s Anti-Horwasp Guide (aka SIR MF)

The Horwasps arrived in the Echo Cluster years ago, yet no proper guides about fighting against them were available — until now. The outcome is clear in games: Either the players fear the Horwasp too much and let them grow too strong, or they charge toward them recklessly, losing ships in vain.

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Tips, Tricks, and Technicalities for a Timely Turn

A Tactic for People Who Want to See More Sunlight

On occasion, my wife and kids look over my shoulder, peek at my computer, and ask, “Why are you staring at those little dots?” They are baffled that I engage in such an antiquated computer game and perplexed why I am so captivated by images of circles. I also consider the same questions and ponder my reasons for my dedication. I don’t know the answer, but I’ll continue to play at least until I do.

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Crystals Young and Old

The Spirit of a New Confederation

The spirit of a thing is that which survives changes in circumstance. The spirit of the Crystal is that of The Snare. The Crystals have a unique technology around which their entire fleet and all strategies must be constructed. Web mines drain fuel, paralyze enemy operations, force them to waste valuable time sweeping, and allow the Crystal to harvest the survivors for their own fleet. However, the opponents of the Crystal are not likely to just march their ships into Crystal space. They must rather be goaded into it, smothered, or caught unawares. Crystal success hinges on the effective implementation of ensnarement tactics.

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Interview With A Dogfighter

Dogfights 2021 Tournament – Starts March 1st! Sign up now!

Dogfights is a semi-blitz style tournament: 8 players on a 60-planet map = deadly close-quarters space combat

In sectors far far away, commanders fight galactic space wars, League is underway at Planets.nu, and a fresh era of Faction Wars spurs competition. Amidst these bloody conflicts, Dogfighters play a major role. While the Dogfights tournament was born in 2019, its current popularity earns it a position in the Nu League lineup.

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The Future Of The Planets Nu Merchant Marine

or, On Operational Mobility

There’s an old saying: that sergeants and captains think about tactics, colonels about strategy, but generals obsess over logistics. We here, safe in our virtual universe, we imagine logistics to be a matter of keeping diesel in the tanks, gas in the trucks, bullets in the guns, food in the kitchens — that sort of thing. But we have only the vaguest inkling what the problem must be like with an army in the field unless we’ve been there. Continue reading

On Grand Strategy

It is said of Hannibal that he won every battle but lost the war. The same has been claimed for other historical conflicts with more or less justification: the American conflict in Vietnam, the campaigns of Gustav Adolf den Store of Sweden, and even that Pyrrhus of Epirus from whose name the very phrase “Pyrrhic victory” comes.

But how is this possible? Is war not, more or less, a succession of battles which creates a metaphoric path over which the winner ascends to eventual victory?

As it happens, it is — and then again, it isn’t. Continue reading