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Tyralak    12,064

Anybody who still has the idea that Brian isn't objective after watching this needs to have their head examined.

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I think "objective" would be an explicit statement that this is an outlier to be ignored.  It's not just the fact that small arms/ground artillery have demonstrated equal or superior firepower (a list to which I'd add Han's shot against the docking bay wall in ANH, Veers' shot against the shield generator in ESB and the clone heavy artillery shooting down the TF battleship in AotC), its that starship guns have demonstrated vastly better firepower:

ANH: Devastator's partially deflected shot vaporised a significant volume of T4's fin (greater than that of the speeder bike blown apart here)

ANH: X-wings vaporised several cubic metres of the Death Star, again greater than the volume of the bike

ESB: multiple asteroid vaporisations, all volumes significantly greater than the craters left here

RotJ: TL shot either a) vaporised an ISD on it's own or B) punched through tens of metres metal, probably including armour, to hit the main reactor.  Again, a far greater volume than the bike

TPM: TF battleship guns blowing apart starfighters far bigger than the bike

AotC: Slave 1 blows apart multiple asteroids of greater volume that the craters seen here

RotS: Numerous shots from capital ships blowing holes in their opposite numbers far of greater volume than the bike

RO: Again, capship guns blowing holes of far greater volume than the bike.

Conclusion: When we see multiple cases of warship guns vaporising asteroids tens of metres across, and numerous examples of warships blowing holes in starships that likewise represent tens of cubic metres of vaporised metal, then a single example of them producing craters 1-2 metres across, or blowing apart a two metre long accumulation of chicken wire is not convincing.

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Praeothmin    530

Concerning the accuracy, I don't think ECM is the only factor which can make them miss in battle.

In battle, ships are also moving, so if you do have ECM that screws with your targetting computers (and we've seen many times that in SW the gunners don't have direct LOS), then a moving target is much harder to hit.

In this case, they were shooting at a stationary target, without any (mentioned) ECM, as Brian stated.

 

However, since Thrawn clearly did not want to kill them, I have no problem accepting that he was shooting at far less than maximum power.

As Seafort said, we've seen many examples of much greater firepower in the movies to believe that this is the limit of the ISD's power (RotS being the best example IMO)...

Even in AotC, ground force weapons were causing more damage than what we've seen in this instance in Rebels...

Starfighter weapons in TFU had dealt more damage as well...

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Brian Young    11,994

Yes, I like Rebels quite a bit. ;)

i assume everyone has seen The Last Jedi by now. If not, spoilers ahead.

 

The battle at the beginning proves that heavy turbolasers fire “bigatons.” Those were really, really big guns, but the magnitude can no longer be debated. There it is.

but it also proves that turbolasers lose energy exponentially over distance, later in the film. Now, in every franchise there are scenes where the enemy is just out of range, and we cut outside to see them practically nose to nose. But in this case, it was a major plot point. They were in visual range, but on the very edge of effective Turbolaser range for better part of the movie.

i feel this solves the continuity problem with Zero Hour, when compared to other examples. The good Captain gave some good examples above. Those were all close range examples. But when we are talking about a few thousand kilometers, they lose energy quickly. In Zero Hour, Thrawn’s fleet was in high orbit.

Also, the same middle of the movie battle proves the shield permeability argument. Kylo Ren was strafing the Rebel ships while Turbolaser pulses were splashing on the shields above him. Simultaneously.

That’s why they use starfighters against capital ships - they can fly under the shields and hit vulnerable systems directly, like gun turrets, as seen earlier in the movie. It is more effective than pounding the shields for hours from a distance.

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Khas    12,143

I also like Rebels - though it took a bit to grow on me.  I knew I wasn't the only one who squeed when I saw that they brought Thrawn back in to canon.

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Brian Young    11,994

That was a high point for me too. I enjoy it more than Clone Wars. It happens on a smaller scale, with a bit more character development. Clone Wars was more cinematic, but some of the characters were just kinda there.

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9 hours ago, Brian Young said:

Also, the same middle of the movie battle proves the shield permeability argument. Kylo Ren was strafing the Rebel ships while Turbolaser pulses were splashing on the shields above him. Simultaneously.

 

On the other hand, we still have explicit proof from the RotJ novelisation, TPM, and Rogue One, and implicit evidence from ANH, that fighters can't pass through warship shields, and those shields must therefore be disabled by other heavy warships before fighters can be effective.

 

The solution may therefore be that permeability is variable, possibly linked to the difference between particle and ray shields.  If, for example, in the Clone Wars and the sequel era tactical doctrine was to throw all power into countering enemy TL fire, while OT-era doctrine was more of a balance between blocking TLs and physical objects, it would account for both the CW and ST evidence of fighters ignoring shields, and the OT/RO evidence that shields must be brought down before fighters could be effective. It would be roughly analogous to the question "are Star Trek shields bubbles or hull-huggers", in which case the answer is "it depends which era you're talking about, and is probably a setting rather than inherent to the technology".

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Brian Young    11,994

In Rogue One, I assume you mean the planetary shields. But the Falcon jumped through planetary shields in TFA. They had to be traveling FTL, but they did it.

The shield around DSII was probably a similar planetary shield.

in TPM, Anakin penetrated the warship’s shields. He flew right in. Yes, they were launching fighters at the time, but this does not counter the argument effectively, since he did do it, and there was no order to lower those shields. Note that fighters launch all the time in Clone Wars and Rebels without lowering shields. They visibly pass right through the visible shields.

in ANH, the fighters penetrated any shields the DS had.

in TLJ, Poe strafed the hull directly without any warship involvement.

In ROTJ, The TIEs strafed Rebel ships without any warship involvement. “Try to draw their fire away from the cruisers.” “Only the fighters are attacking, I wonder what those star destroyers are waiting for.”

In Clone Wars, Anakin lead a squadron of Ywings against Malevolence, without any warship involvement until afterward.

it goes on and on. And on. At SciFights, amount of evidence rules, and outliers are overruled by weight of evidence.

true, there are different shield types, but fighters flying in under capital ship shields is a staple in Star Wars. It is a weakness, and one that is exploited at every turn. In almost every space battle. I feel it was most explicitly demonstrated in TLJ, with little wiggle room for interpretation, as we can see Kylo strafing the hull effectively while Turbolaser pulses splash harmlessly off the shields above him. Simultaneously my friend.

 

Gosh, my iPad is acting weird with capitalization and stuff on this forum. :/

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In Rogue One, I assume you mean the planetary shields. But the Falcon jumped through planetary shields in TFA. They had to be traveling FTL, but they did it.

You assume incorrectly - I'm talking about the Star Destroyer's shields, when the Y-wings were explicitly ordered to aim for the opening in the shields created by capship bombardment.

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in TPM, Anakin penetrated the warship’s shields. He flew right in. Yes, they were launching fighters at the time, but this does not counter the argument effectively, since he did do it, and there was no order to lower those shields.

Is your argument, therefore, that all the professional pilots are incompetent idiots, since none of them flew through the shields, and were complaining that said shields were too strong for their weapons to penetrate.  The fact that they were launching fighters at the time comprehensively counters the "permeable shield" theory in this example.  It's not the first time we've seen that ships have to lower shields for others to launch or dock - you demonstrated this conclusively yourself with your analysis of the T4-Devastator battle, to the extent of identifying the moment the Devastator dropped shields, by showing when T4's shots stopped causing shield flashes and started causing armour flashes.

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in ANH, the fighters penetrated any shields the DS had.

Indeed, and General Dodonna specifically mentioned that characteristic of the shields in his briefing.  If this characteristic was typical of shields, there would have been no need for him to do so.

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In ROTJ, The TIEs strafed Rebel ships without any warship involvement. “Try to draw their fire away from the cruisers.” “Only the fighters are attacking, I wonder what those star destroyers are waiting for.”

Meanwhile, we have Admiral Ackbar's explicit statement that "if we can knock out their [the Star Destroyers'] shields our fighters might stand a chance against them" (my emphasis).

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Note that fighters launch all the time in Clone Wars and Rebels without lowering shields. They visibly pass right through the visible shields.

in TLJ, Poe strafed the hull directly without any warship involvement.

In Clone Wars, Anakin lead a squadron of Ywings against Malevolence, without any warship involvement until afterward.

I feel it was most explicitly demonstrated in TLJ, with little wiggle room for interpretation, as we can see Kylo strafing the hull effectively while Turbolaser pulses splash harmlessly off the shields above him. Simultaneously my friend.

In these cases, fair enough, as I've already acknowledged.  On the other hand, would you consider the clear demonstration of the E-D's bubble shields in, say, Best of Both Worlds, as evidence that the E-A had bubble shields in TUC?

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Praeothmin    530

In RoTJ, if fighters were ineffective against capital ships, then the Tie fighters coming at their medical frigates would have been ignored at the beginning, since the ISDs were not attacking...

With what TLJ showed us, it is much clearer as to why fighters are used vs capital ships:

 “Is it trying to breach the armour?”

”It cannot penetrate the armour, it is targeting the surface guns”

Or something to that effect...

The Admiral did not fear the fighter penetrating the armour of the ship, but knew his surface défense guns were vulnerable...

 

 

Concerning the arcing shots we see, while they are the same colour as Turbolaser bolts, I do not believe they are, as they behave nothing like the TL shots we’ve seen over the years...

If we look at TFA, RO and TLJ, fighter weapons, as well as hand weapons, behave exactly as we’ve been used to expect over ALL SW movies and tv shows: They fire a single linear bolt of finite length, the bolt looking like a kind of a cylinder, with no bulbous protrusion at the leading edge, and even in atmosphere, at the range they are fired, even on Hoth, we see NO curvature in their path, meaning that the effect of gravity, if there is some, is hard to discern...

 

Rogue One shows us a Capital ship engagement, and the TLs shoot those same bolts as we’d expect...

Since all hand weapons and vehicular weapons are still shooting those straight bolts in all the movies and series, then the green “blobs” fired in TLJ are NOT TL shots...

They look and behave a bit like Photon Torpedoes, guided missiles, shielded missiles, explaining the luminous aura surrounding them when fired (now I do not compare the explosions to Photorps, only their physical appearance when fired), and their arcing trajectories when fired...

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13 hours ago, Praeothmin said:

In RoTJ, if fighters were ineffective against capital ships, then the Tie fighters coming at their medical frigates would have been ignored at the beginning, since the ISDs were not attacking...

The medical frigate is a hospital ship a fraction of the size of the Mon Cal cruisers.  I wouldn't be surprised if it were vulnerable to fighter-scale weapons even firing against its shields.  As for the larger ships, I can think of a few ways in which fighters could play a role against them even with impermeable shields - using weapons flashes on the shields to interfere with targeting, or forcing them to keep 360 degree coverage instead of focusing against the Star Destroyers.

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Praeothmin    530

But there’s no way of proving it, as their is no explicit references to your claims, and few implicit ones as well, and since we now clearly see the fighters can indeed get under the shields of a Capital ship in the latest movies, your interpretation seems less valid, when you consider all canon...

I don’t know why this would be difficult to accept...

Fighters are agile, and very small vessels, and we know ships in SW can angle their shields, so fighters should be able to take advantage of this “shield porosity” by going under them and attacking the sensitive ship system directly...

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1 hour ago, Praeothmin said:

But there’s no way of proving it, as their is no explicit references to your claims

Yes there is - in TPM the professional Naboo pilots were complaining about the Trade Fed's shields being too strong, and in RotJ we have an explicit statement that bringing down the shields was a prerequisite for the fighters to stand a chance.  In ANH, Dodonna explicitly mentioned the permeability of DS1's shields, which he wouldn't have if permeable shields were SOP.

Conclusion: while we have proof of shield permeability in some circumstances, we also have proof of absolute impermeability in others, and therefore we have to ask what's changed.  Variations in tactical doctrine strike me as the most likely, given the repeated switches back and forth. Brian's theory of low-speed permeability, based on Anakin's explanation of ground-contact shield permeability, is not supported by the evidence (in TLJ for example) of shield penetration by high-speed attack runs compared to the very low speed T4 docking that required Devastator to drop shields.

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Praeothmin    530

In ANH, Dodonna specifically said:

General Dodonna: The battle station is heavily shielded and carries a firepower greater than half the star fleet. Its defenses are designed around a direct, large-scale assault. A small one-man fighter should be able to penetrate the outer defense.

Meaning that the shield, as you said, were indeed permeable...

And in RoTJ Wedge seemed alarmed at the fact the Ties were heading for the medical frigate...

If they had no chance, then why panic?

and they did not concentrate all firepower on the SSD to give fighters a chance, but simply to take out the most powerful enemy as fast as they could...

There is no explicit quote stating that they needed to fire on the SSD so the fighters could attack her...

Plus in TPM, Anakin was able to get inside the shields, in fact he was inside the ship, so the shields weren’t a perfect bubble and weren’t impervious...

 

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13 hours ago, Praeothmin said:

In ANH, Dodonna specifically said:

General Dodonna: The battle station is heavily shielded and carries a firepower greater than half the star fleet. Its defenses are designed around a direct, large-scale assault. A small one-man fighter should be able to penetrate the outer defense.

Meaning that the shield, as you said, were indeed permeable...

Which, as I've now said several times, implies impermeability of most shields, otherwise there would have been no need for Dodonna to explain that the Death Star's shields were permeable.

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and they did not concentrate all firepower on the SSD to give fighters a chance, but simply to take out the most powerful enemy as fast as they could...

There is no explicit quote stating that they needed to fire on the SSD so the fighters could attack her...

Yes there is - I provided it above.  In full, from Ackbar, Return of the Jedi paperback, page 178, immediately after Lando advised moving in to engage the Star Destroyers at close range: "Concentrate your fire on their power generators. If we can knock out their shields, our fighters might stand a chance against them."

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And in RoTJ Wedge seemed alarmed at the fact the Ties were heading for the medical frigate...

If they had no chance, then why panic?

Read my answer above.

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Plus in TPM, Anakin was able to get inside the shields, in fact he was inside the ship, so the shields weren’t a perfect bubble and weren’t impervious...

Because, as Brian noted, the control ship was launching fighters at the time, ergo it would have had to lower shields to do so.  Up to that point all the professional pilots had been complaining that shields were too strong - ergo they were impermeable, and Anakin, while out of control, slipped through the localised, lowering of the shields around the hangar entrance. Call it luck, call it a fluke, call it the Force, but it certainly wasn't consistent permeability of the entire shield.

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Praeothmin    530

So then we have the Droid control ships with imperméable shields, and maybe the SSD...

Ackbar’s quote can also be interpreted as meaning that even if the fighters can go under the shield, they can’t do much against such a big target...

This was explicit in TLJ when Poe’s fighter could only destroy the surface guns, but not penetrate the shields of the Dreadnaught...

Having just re-watched Rogue One, where Tie fighters were capable of attacking and slightly damage the Rebel’s Capital ship, lightly in the beginning, more so after the ISDs attacked it, even with shields up, and where the Rebels were able to attack an ISD with its shields up (though damage was light), I am convinced that most shields in SW are permeable, except for the Droid Control Ships...

The “explicit” quote in RoTJ is anything but explicit, and still leaves the door open to interpretation, which goes against all but one example in the SW cinematic universe, and all SW series...

I will no longer spend any time repeating these arguments since they are apparently ignored...

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1 hour ago, Praeothmin said:

Ackbar’s quote can also be interpreted as meaning that even if the fighters can go under the shield, they can’t do much against such a big target...

The “explicit” quote in RoTJ is anything but explicit, and still leaves the door open to interpretation, which goes against all but one example in the SW cinematic universe, and all SW series...

The quote explicitly states that knocking out the shields is a prerequisite for fighters to stand a chance.  If fighters could slip through the shields then knocking them out wouldn't have any effect on their effectiveness. It goes against CW and ST examples, but it is supported by TPM and OT-era examples from RO and ANH

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Having just re-watched Rogue One, where Tie fighters were capable of attacking and slightly damage the Rebel’s Capital ship, lightly in the beginning, more so after the ISDs attacked it, even with shields up, and where the Rebels were able to attack an ISD with its shields up (though damage was light), I am convinced that most shields in SW are permeable, except for the Droid Control Ships...

Then why were the Y-wings explicitly targeting openings in the shield?  Why did Devastator drop shields to bring the T4 aboard?  Why did Dodonna explicitly bring up the Death Star's permeable shields as a weakness?  Why did Ackbar describe knocking out the Endor fleet's shields as a prerequisite for fighters to stand a chance?

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This was explicit in TLJ when Poe’s fighter could only destroy the surface guns, but not penetrate the shields of the Dreadnaught...

There was no mention of shields - only armour, and TLJ is one of the examples where the shields are permeable.

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I will no longer spend any time repeating these arguments since they are apparently ignored...

There's a difference between refuting and ignoring.  I'm doing the former.

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Darth Spock    0

Talking about the orbital bombardment in Zero Hour, something that struck my about that scene not being a good representation of TL power, was the complete lack of indiscriminate fire landing in the vicinity of Kanan's bike. If that was just spill over from the bombardment of the base, I'd expect to be seeing more random impacts in the general area. It looks more like a smaller weapon not assigned to the bombardment was tracking in on what they assumed to be a recon unit. Additionally in one of the scenes, a TL striking near the base of the shield throws up an debris cloud 50 - 100 meters into the air. You can see it at the lower left part of the screen here @ ~ 0:49:

https://youtu.be/ARR0RPrr_rg?t=46s

 

On 12/30/2017 at 10:29 PM, Brian Young said:

The battle at the beginning proves that heavy turbolasers fire “bigatons.” Those were really, really big guns, but the magnitude can no longer be debated. There it is.

 

Did it really? I won't be seeing TLJ until it comes to video, but in a video of the bombardment that was briefly on youtube, it looked like the shots were only making maybe MOAB level blasts. Then again there was an impressive, lingering fireball visible from space, but I couldn't tell what exactly led up to that point. I'd really like to see visual confirmation of WMD TLs, I just wasn't sure this was it?

 

 

I might add a few points on the shield permeability angle. 

 

The droid control ship in TPM apparently had a hull hugger or shield/armor hybrid. Long before entering the hangar, fighters were zipping right along the surface:

http://www.cap-that.com/starwars/1/images/starwarsI_7884.jpg

The same class ship had a visible hull hugger in RoTS:

http://www.cap-that.com/starwars/3/images/starwarsIII_0055.jpg

It'd be hard to get under a shield hovering only a few meters or less from the hull, even if it is permeable.

 

In the Clone Wars movie after escaping the planet in the stolen shuttle Anakin went to dock with a Venator, but they needed to lower deflectors over the hanger first, at which point a number of Vulture fighters promptly made a kamikaze run inside.

 

They also tend to use the term "armor" rather loosely in SW too. In CW 2:8 "Weapons Factory" a prototype super tank is referenced as having impenetrable armor, but is later clearly stated as using shields for protection:

https://youtu.be/10qal0ya_2o?t=1m3s

But the shields are apparently inseparable from the armor, not even preventing an explosive from magnetically attaching to the hull:

https://youtu.be/kMN7IsopqSs?t=1m20s

(Enjoy the CW vintage droid idiocy while you're there ;)) It also either doesn't block light sabers or the "shield" only covers the outer shell that was retracted to reveal the mortar.

 

The example in RO makes no mention of an opening in the shield. Relevant section from the novel pg 267 Kindle edition:

Quote

One of the Star Destroyers had allowed itself to be flanked on two sides while leaving its forward firing arc empty. Its weapons had been almost entirely diverted to port and starboard. Raddus was ready to shout another command, but Gold Squadron recognized the opening and he heard a voice on the comm: “Y-wings, on me! Path is clear!” The bomber wing, barely out of its last attack run against the shield gate, altered course and powered directly toward the exposed front of the Destroyer. TIE fighters pursued, faster than the bombers but unprepared to pull away from their defense of the gate. The Destroyer itself recognized the danger, attempted to swing away and simultaneously bring its guns to bear, but far too late. The Y-wings converged and flew so close to the Imperial vessel that the tactical displays couldn't differentiate them from the Destroyer’s mass.

It isn't impossible that the ISD's forward shields were left open too, but the indication is clearly that it left an opening in its defensive firing arc, so this example does little to indicate a projected impenetrable shield.

 

 

In ANH Dodonna's comment about getting through the DS's deferences is pretty vague, I originally though he was referring to the heavy TL network. The magnetic field they have a choppy ride passing though may have had a defensive purpose. As big and powerful as the DS is, i doubt its there only as a side effect.

 

There also the various collisions we've seen, the Executor in RotJ was apparently only vulnerable after the bridge deflectors went down. Also, smaller objects usually do little to no damage on impact, from Y-Wings crashing harmlessly on the hull of the Malevolence in the CW, to a GR-75 smashing into Vader's ISD in RO, to the exploding asteroids ineffectually smashing against an ISD in ESB. Compared to more damaging collisions and the general use of thin, spaced plates over monolithic hulls I doubt they're tanking those hits by virtue of material strength alone. Sometimes they can get under a shield, sometimes they can't.

 

I have doubts about these variations being the result of linear shield evolution over different eras so much as on ongoing game of rock-paper-scissors with a huge variety of different shield types. So far they've had deflectors, ray shields, magnetic fields/seals, thermal shields, red ones, blue ones, green ones, transparent ones, planar, projected, cascading domes, spherical and hull hugger. Even "shields" that are a part of the armor, but require active power. They might even have some actual fields emanating from the vessels with no clear boundary. SW has a ridiculous amount of different shields and shield accessories. 

 

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Praeothmin    530
Quote

They also tend to use the term "armor" rather loosely in SW too. In CW 2:8 "Weapons Factory" a prototype super tank is referenced as having impenetrable armor, but is later clearly stated as using shields for protection:

At 1:29, Anakin clearly says:

"They must be Ray shielded!"

After the Droids say their shields are inpenetrable...

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Darth Spock    0
8 hours ago, Praeothmin said:

At 1:29, Anakin clearly says:

"They must be Ray shielded!"

After the Droids say their shields are inpenetrable...

Earlier in the episode a tactical droid originally said: "No, the super tanks are not ready, but when they are, the Republic forces will be routed.
They have no weapon that can penetrate its heavy armor."

Here we go:

https://youtu.be/pxmAr3b2fYU?t=4m37s

And going strictly by visuals, there's not even a hint of shield effects either. It's the back to back references to shields I originally referenced that counteracts this. 

In fact, I'd long suspected something similar with the AT-ATs on Hoth, with the speeders successfully firing on one only after it was already down. Obvious shield effects on similar, yet weaker walkers in RO seem to support this. In fact, I suspect the AT-STs and AT-DPs from Rebels also have similar, though weaker variations of this tech bolstering their metal frames. 

 

Another interesting piece for examination would be the 1st battle in CW 1:19 "Storm Over Ryloth," featuring multiple droid fighters ramming into Venators, with varying effects. There's even a RotJ style crash into the bridge which, while damaging, was no where near as catastrophic as seen on Executor. The only apparent difference between the two events being the presence of deflector shields. It also appears that there is no direct interaction between the groups capital ships. Here's a quick clip:

https://youtu.be/7XuzooG2bvo?t=3m19s

 

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