Does anybody take the movie seriously?

Mekt-Hakkikt

Mpanty's bane
(...)
Consider that the Skipper had to decloak to make course corrections; that suggests that it can't "see out" of the cloak. That's something which is essential to fighter operations: the Strakha we see in the Wing Commander II intro need to fly to the Tiger's Claw, lock their torpedoes and then decloak only to fire them. (...)

Hmm, doesn't Hunter in FA mention (or was it Bear in ER?) that a cloaked Strakha is blind sensor-wise?
 

-danr-

Vice Admiral
From my perspective, the ships are the stars of the series. They provide so much flavor to the experience because they serve so many purposes. Sure, they're there to fight a war - but on another level, they are your home, your rec room, your night 'out,' your place of 'business,' etc.

I completely identify with this notion, the variation in character and feel between the various ships was one of the series stronger points. I still turn my speakers up on my PC when I'm in the barracks of the Tiger's Claw, just to hear the sleepy music and the dripping roof.
 

Catnip

Spaceman
Hmm, doesn't Hunter in FA mention (or was it Bear in ER?) that a cloaked Strakha is blind sensor-wise?

Yeah, that was Hunter. I guess Confed improved over the Kilrathi design.

One thing Super Wing Commander does is add little prequel bits to the original Wing Commander script; so scattered through the same old conversations are additional bits of story that are supposed to prepare us for Super Wing Commander 2. One of those is ongoing references to an argument between Halcyon and Tolwyn about the existence of stealth fighters; Halcyon thinks its possible, Tolwyn doesn't.

Thanks for the info.

I see how there could be big technical considerations in going from cloaked fighters to cloaked missiles, but those don't seem to be a factor in Confed's perception of the situation. The fleet didn't know anything about the workings of cloaking technology until much later; all they knew at the time of the Claw's destruction was that the Kilrathi could somehow make missiles invisible, and that the cats had also made significant efforts towards stealth fighters (though the one in Academy didn't have the active camouflage). With that knowledge, it seems strange to pass off reports of invisible fighters as completely impossible.
 

Bandit LOAF

Long Live the Confederation!
Hmm, doesn't Hunter in FA mention (or was it Bear in ER?) that a cloaked Strakha is blind sensor-wise?

Fleet Action says that "Stealths" are blind in that they will be detected if they use their active scanners. That's not to say they *can't*, just that it's a way to detect them if they do. That is to say that they can "see out" and they can even use their various systems... but sending an active sensor ping means they can be traced (Dr. Forstchen is clearly modeling that fight after submarine combat).

I guess it's also hard to square away exactly what all this means in terms of a fighter's ordinary functionality. Presumably the then-unknown Strakha didn't have to worry about a countermeasure detecting them while they were locking onto the Tiger's Claw... but then we do fly seemingly undetectable Shok'lar a few months after Fleet Action, which use their ordinary radar with impunity.

(And finally, it might be worth remembering that we don't really know what the stealth ship in Fleet Action is; the book only calls it a "Stealth"... is it a Strakha, or some separate long range reconaissance ship? My gut feeling says the book was probably turned in with 'Strakha' and then some later editor turned it into 'Stealth'... but I don't know. We do see Strakha in this role in WC3.)

I see how there could be big technical considerations in going from cloaked fighters to cloaked missiles, but those don't seem to be a factor in Confed's perception of the situation. The fleet didn't know anything about the workings of cloaking technology until much later; all they knew at the time of the Claw's destruction was that the Kilrathi could somehow make missiles invisible, and that the cats had also made significant efforts towards stealth fighters (though the one in Academy didn't have the active camouflage). With that knowledge, it seems strange to pass off reports of invisible fighters as completely impossible.

It's worth pointing out that we're talking about *Tolwyn's* perception and not the entire Confederation.

In fact, we know that stealth fighters are something the Confederation proper is at least thinking about: there's a note at the end of the Confederation Handbook's report on the Skipper (dated... 2652? I'm at work right now, but it's around then) about referring to another top secret intelligence file regarding the status of the Kilrathi stealth fighter programme. We also know that Halcyon was worried about stealth fighters (from SWC) and that Maya (from WCA) immediately recognized the threat behind them.

It's possible that Tolwyn has access to that top secret intelligence and that it's just plain wrong. I kind of imagine cloak-development as working like the atomic bomb projects during World War II. Everyone know's its possible but the fog of war means no one correctly understands how close or far anyone else is from the goal. Wing Commander IV even suggests that the full cloak uses some sort of "crystals"; I think of how the United States 'knew' the Japanese project wouldn't build a weapon because the Empire lacked Uranium.

... but we also know Tolwyn has some personal issues here, with (for whatever reason) the denial of Kilrathi cloaked fighters being treated as a part of his psyche (in SWC and then Wing Commander Academy). Beyond that, there are some strikes against Blair in Tolwyn's mind already... both built in to Wing Commander II and rising from later stories:

- Tolwyn already feels personally betrayed by Blair. Tolwyn began following Blair's career while he was still at the Academy. He set himself up as Blair's patron and mentor... and then Blair very publicly denounced the Admiral (at the end of Academy).

- This already happened... and all parties involved know it. Blair and Tolwyn (and Maniac) are the only people who know that the Kilrathi developed the 'Shroud-style' Strakha (on WCA) and they're sworn to secrecy. They know that Blair was right and that Tolwyn has some hang-up about this particular issue. Consider that from Tolwyn's perspective: now Blair is telling what amounts to the same story, except to the court and the press.

- The Kilrathi *didn't* deploy any more stealth fighters... for eleven years. We know why that happened, Tolwyn and Blair do not. If six months later Strakha had begun appearing on the front lines then presumably Blair's story would have gone differently... but the lack of stealth fighters after his claims must have done a lot to further damn him over the years.

- There *was* a traitor on some level (who removed the flight recorder) and Tolwyn knows that; it was either a member of *his* crew on the Austin or it was Blair himself. Given Tolwyn's pride, which would he believe?
 

-danr-

Vice Admiral
haha, I'm such a n00b sometimes. It's funny, I've played the game since day 1 as an 8 year old when WC1 came out, still own and cherish the whole collection, but because I take the games as gospel I have such a poor knowledge of storyline from outside the games.

I haven't read a single book, I think this makes me a bad fan :D
 

Max Gene

Spaceman
haha, I'm such a n00b sometimes. It's funny, I've played the game since day 1 as an 8 year old when WC1 came out, still own and cherish the whole collection, but because I take the games as gospel I have such a poor knowledge of storyline from outside the games.

I haven't read a single book, I think this makes me a bad fan :D

It's even worse, the part he's talking about is in the intro of WC2, not in the books ;).
 

Mekt-Hakkikt

Mpanty's bane
Fleet Action says that "Stealths" are blind in that they will be detected if they use their active scanners. That's not to say they *can't*, just that it's a way to detect them if they do. That is to say that they can "see out" and they can even use their various systems... but sending an active sensor ping means they can be traced (Dr. Forstchen is clearly modeling that fight after submarine combat).

(...)

Ah ok then, the translation then is probably again just imprecise.
 

Mace

Vice Admiral
- There *was* a traitor on some level (who removed the flight recorder) and Tolwyn knows that; it was either a member of *his* crew on the Austin or it was Blair himself. Given Tolwyn's pride, which would he believe?

That's some part that actually does not make a lot of sence, why would Jazz keep around the device for eleven years and not ditch it or send it to the mandarin group for safekeeping?
 

frostytheplebe

Seventh Part of the Seal
- There *was* a traitor on some level (who removed the flight recorder) and Tolwyn knows that; it was either a member of *his* crew on the Austin or it was Blair himself. Given Tolwyn's pride, which would he believe?

That's some part that actually does not make a lot of sence, why would Jazz keep around the device for eleven years and not ditch it or send it to the mandarin group for safekeeping?

Some people like their trophies? Jazz always struck of as somewhat of a thrill seeker. Something tells me he got a nice buzz out of keeping it close by while getting rid of the last Claw survivors.
 
Top