Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Graham Kennedy » Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:35 pm

Not so sure that Cylons can be churned out Terminator style. Centurions, maybe. But those Humanoid bodies may take just as long to grow as real people do for all we know. And the inside of the Raiders seems to be a big organic brain... lord knows how long that takes to grow.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Deepcrush » Thu Feb 04, 2010 10:44 pm

Mark wrote:
Deepcrush wrote:Every year a new generation turns 18.


And how long does it take to produce a cylon raider, centurion, or human drone? While the colonies need habitable planets to raise said troops, a cylon fleet/army can be build in space on the move....we heard Adama suggest that the resurection ship could have been a Raider production ship after all.


How long does it take to build a Viper, train a Marine, enlist a human? The colonies don't need to find new worlds, they have twelve of them.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Mark » Thu Feb 04, 2010 11:51 pm

Deepcrush wrote:
Mark wrote:
Deepcrush wrote:Every year a new generation turns 18.


And how long does it take to produce a cylon raider, centurion, or human drone? While the colonies need habitable planets to raise said troops, a cylon fleet/army can be build in space on the move....we heard Adama suggest that the resurection ship could have been a Raider production ship after all.


How long does it take to build a Viper, train a Marine, enlist a human? The colonies don't need to find new worlds, they have twelve of them.



Building the Viper is likely the easy part. You have your officer recruits that have to go through Basic, then OCS, then Flight School. In each stage you'll have washouts, as Viper pilots are supposed to be the best of the best.

And granted, the colonials do have 12 full planets of resources, but the cylons can mass produce fully operational and ready to go fighters.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Deepcrush » Thu Feb 04, 2010 11:56 pm

Mark wrote:Building the Viper is likely the easy part. You have your officer recruits that have to go through Basic, then OCS, then Flight School. In each stage you'll have washouts, as Viper pilots are supposed to be the best of the best.


If you have twelve worlds, with between four and six billion people each... all recruiting for pilots... how many pilots can you produce in a year? Take the number of pilots that Earth produces as a whole every year then times that by twelve.

And granted, the colonials do have 12 full planets of resources, but the cylons can mass produce fully operational and ready to go fighters.


Taking what is said above. Do you really think that Res-ship of the Cylons can match that number?
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Mark » Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:13 am

Taking what is said above. Do you really think that Res-ship of the Cylons can match that number?


Alone? No. But is that the only one in the Cylon fleet?


If you have twelve worlds, with between four and six billion people each... all recruiting for pilots... how many pilots can you produce in a year? Take the number of pilots that Earth produces as a whole every year then times that by twelve.


I'm going to conciede here....especaially now that I've taken your point a step beyond. The US's pilot production is one thing, but with a united global pilot program....the numbers are impressive.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Deepcrush » Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:16 am

Mark wrote:I'm going to conciede here....especaially now that I've taken your point a step beyond. The US's pilot production is one thing, but with a united global pilot program....the numbers are impressive.


Exactly, the global production of twelve industrial worlds against the single world/astroid of the Cylons is just flat out broken.

Mark wrote:Alone? No. But is that the only one in the Cylon fleet?


Yes, by term that it is always spoken of as "The".
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Mark » Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:18 am

I'm reasonably sure that the "The" they were using was to reference the one ship they knew about in the one fleet chasing the survivors.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Deepcrush » Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:21 am

The Cylons referred to it in the same manner. There are also some matters which will make it clear but you wont see those parts until Season 4.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Mark » Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:26 am

Got ya.....I'm only half way through season two now, so I've still got a bit to go.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Deepcrush » Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:29 am

You'll get there... and then go OH SHIT SON!
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Sionnach Glic » Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:28 am

With regards to the Cylons' industrial capabilities, all we can do is speculate wildly. However, we can infer a few things. (Beware Mark, here be some big spoilers!)

Raiders were thrown at Galactica and its fighters in massive amounts, with little real success. Despite the massive casualties they were taking amongst their Raider contingents, the Cylons didn't seem all too inclined to change their fighter tactics in battle. This would seem to suggest that the Raiders are expendable, and thus easily replaced. It's possible that the Basestars may even have facilities on board for building/growing new ones.

When it comes to larger ships, however, the Cylons seem very hesitant to deploy them in a role where they could take serious damage. Basestars normally stand off from the battle itself, simply hurling missiles at extreme range and acting as carriers. Indeed, as far as we can tell the only Basestar that was destroyed prior to the Battle of the Resurrection Ship was taken down by sabotage over Kobol. The majority of the Basestars destroyed in later incidents are taken down while they're in defensive roles (and thus need to hold their position) or when they seem willing to take losses due to the likelyhood of taking down a major Colonial asset (such as the ambush of the Pegasus or the attack on Galactica over New Caprica). From this it can probably be inferred that the Cylons do not consider Basestars to be expendable. On the contrary, they seem to view them as valuable assets that must be kept out of harm's way as much as possible.

In terms of the size of the Cylon fleet, we can also infer a few things from what we see in the show. In the Battle of the Resurrection Ship, the Cylons had a mere two Basestars defending what was easily their most important asset in the region. Over New Caprica they have four Basestars guarding the planet, even though this being the only real location in need of serious protection. This is in spite of four being too few to adequately defend New Caprica against a concentrated assault from the Pegasus and Galactica (I think we can all agree that had the two ships gone in together they could have bested the four Basestars). Later on, when Galactica sends Raptors to investigate the wreckage left over from the Cylon Civil War, we see the debris of what looks to be, at most, a couple dozen Basestars. Given that the Cylon fleet was supposedly split almost neatly in half (with the exception of the Resurrection Ships, which remained under Loyalist control) and that the ambush destroyed all but one of the Rebel vessels, this couple dozen would seem to be the majority of the Cylon fleet. This is supported by what we see during the Battle of the Resurrection Hub, where a grand total of two Basestars are defending the Cylons' most important facility.

Given that no Basestars appear to defend the Colony during Galactica's attack on it, the Battle of the Resurrection Hub would seem to see the final destruction of the Cylon fleet. It's possible that a handful of Basestars may have survived elsewhere and, for whatever reason, did not come to the defence of the Hub or the Colony, but it's unlikely that there were any great numbers left.

From this, I'd guestimate that the Cylon Fleet numbered somewhere between 30 - 60 Basestars strong. Such a small number wouldn't be all that surprising, given that the Cylons seemed to have no real industrial base, instead mining what they could from asteroids and the occasional small moon.

Given that it takes approximately three Basestars to take on a Battlestar with a comfortable chance of success and that the Colonial Fleet numbered 120 Battlestars, it's not surprising that the Cylons went for a surprise attack. In a conventional war, they'd have no chance of victory. Even if the Colonials lost two thirds of their fleet to the opening surprise attack, they'd still be capable of defeating the Cylons due to simple material superiority.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Tyyr » Fri Feb 05, 2010 2:22 pm

The manpower doesn't really matter. The limiting factor is material. A basestar crew is relatively useless without a basestar. It all come down to how fast you can crank out ships of the line. The Cylons have an advantage in that the experience of the crews doesn't die with them. All the important officers can be resurrected and shoved right back into a basestar with no training and all the experience their bodies died with. However without a new basestar that means little.

Something to remember about basestar on battlestar fights is that the Galactica was already so old and antiquated that they were turning her into a museum ship. The museum ship with out dated fighters stood up to basestars and raiders in fights and survived or even won from time to time. That doesn't speak highly of the capabilities of Cylon ships. And I strongly believe that given the resources they expended to try and get Galactica they were likely committing top of the line ships, not the bottom of the barrel.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Sionnach Glic » Fri Feb 05, 2010 4:20 pm

Tyyr wrote:The manpower doesn't really matter. The limiting factor is material. A basestar crew is relatively useless without a basestar. It all come down to how fast you can crank out ships of the line. The Cylons have an advantage in that the experience of the crews doesn't die with them. All the important officers can be resurrected and shoved right back into a basestar with no training and all the experience their bodies died with. However without a new basestar that means little.


Agreed. It's the capships we need to be focussing on here. And in that category the Cylons seem to be very lacking. From my above estimates I'd peg the Cylon fleet at about 50 Basestars. Compared to the 120 Battlestars that the Colonials can field, they're in deep trouble if it should come to a war.

Of course, even the Resurrection advantage may only last so long. They need the Resurrection ships to be somewhat close to the battle itself, which increases the likelyhood of a Colonial vessel stumbling across it, at which point it will become a priority target for the entire fleet. Given that we only saw two Resurrection ships over the entire show and that the Cylons have no means of replacing them, this advantage will only last so long.

Tyyr wrote:Something to remember about basestar on battlestar fights is that the Galactica was already so old and antiquated that they were turning her into a museum ship. The museum ship with out dated fighters stood up to basestars and raiders in fights and survived or even won from time to time. That doesn't speak highly of the capabilities of Cylon ships. And I strongly believe that given the resources they expended to try and get Galactica they were likely committing top of the line ships, not the bottom of the barrel.


Another point that needs to be mentioned is that Galactica wasn't built up to spec either. They cut corners during her construction in order to get it into the First Cylon War on time. So a ~50 year old understaffed, underequipped and poorly built vessel is capable of taking on the only real Cylon warship.

It seems that the entire Cylon Fleet was structured around the idea that they would be able to shut down most of the Colonial Fleet in the opening stages of any war. Their warships are little more than a combination of a carrier and a missile platform, with seemingly no armour on it (see one Basestar go down to a single salvo in The Captain's Hand from the Pegasus). This is perfectly fine if your intent is to just jump inand smother the defenceless enemy in as much ordinance as possible. And for the ensuing occupation of the Colonies they're also not too bad a design - they're capable of offering both orbital and air support and of quickly moving troops to and from trouble spots.

It's interesting to note that the Cylon vessels in the First Cylon War seem to be a lot more sturdily constructed than their modern counterparts. The older Basestars appear far more heavily armoured, and utilise more conventional hangers than the modern Basestars' method of fighter launch, giving greater protection to the Raiders they carried. Given that they managed to drag the war out for more than twelve years (and even then it only ended when they agreed to a ceasefire), it would seem that the older Cylons built their ships around a more conventional view of warfare, giving their vessels greater survivability and protection instead of relying on being able to outnumber any enemies. I think that once the humanoid Cylons took over, they began to restructure the entire Cylon military to fit with their more subtle plan to take down the Colonies. This led to the more anti-insugrency based vessels we see now.

It's also interesting to note that they even kept some of the older Centurion models around, and had them on guard duty at the Colony. Naturaly, you'd expect such an important facility to be guarded by the best troops available, so why go with a 50 year old design? Is it possible that, as with the Basestars, the Centurions became less suitable for open warfare as time went on? The older models are certainly more bulky, might that be an indication of greater armour? It may be that the modern Centurions may also have been built with the concept of an anti-insurgency role in mind, making them lighter and thus easier to resurrect.
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Mark » Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:35 pm

I just watched The Captain's Hand last night, and couldn't believe what I saw. The basestars struck me as a joke. Pegasus took wave after wave of fire, and two direct hits from nukes and was still in the fight. As Rochey just pointed out, a single volley blew the one basestar to hell. As ship as frail as that would be useless as a means to counter a battlestar in a fire fight. It strikes me that the oBSG basestars had more armor and survivability.

Now, that said....I've come up with an explination (possibly). If the Cylon mindset is based around the idea of resurection, perhaps they're not overly concerned about building survivable ships?
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Re: Would the colonies have won an honest war?

Postby Tyyr » Fri Feb 05, 2010 7:01 pm

Resurrection only works with the crews, it does nothing for the basestars themselves. Not worrying about crew survivability might make some twisted sense but no concern about the ship's being destroyed is just stupid.
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