Meerkat Musings vs Idazmi7 – Warp Strafing

If you’ve been following my site and blog, then by now you will know that I’ve engaged in a few scraps with a Youtube user who goes by the name ‘Idazmi7’. Our most recent discussion has been on the subject of warp strafing and long-range combat – and the issues I have with his proclamations of such things being viable tactics.

Prior to actually getting involved in a debate with him, Idazmi7 decided to accuse me of deleting his previous comments on the subject of warp strafing. Naturally, I didn’t take too kindly to such spurious allegations, which I address here. For the record, I have not deleted any comments of his – I don’t need to.

The subject of warp strafing has come up before – but this was to be a more one-on-one debate (it is still going on, but it is starting to go around in circles, so now is the time to present it to everyone).

So, without further ado, let’s see what Idazmi7 has to offer. His comments are in purple, mine are in blue. To begin, I posted the text of my original warp strafing argument. Apologies for the somewhat chaotic nature of the post – Youtube does not lend itself well to copy and paste – if you want to see the discussion in its natural form, check out this video.

 

There’s an idea Trek vs Wars circles that warp strafing (a ship at warp attacks a sublight target) is a potentially viable tactic for Federation ships to use against their Imperial counterparts. There <em>may </em>be some merit in exploring this idea, <em>but</em>, before doing so, it’s important (as always) to look at the evidence.

There are a number of occasions where this tactic might have proven useful, yet for whatever reason has not been used. Significantly, virtually every battle seen on Star Trek takes place with both vessels either at warp or at sublight speeds. The most damming evidence against warp strafing comes in the form of two <em>Deep Space Nine </em>episodes, <strong>Way of the Warrior </strong>and <strong>A Call to Arms</strong>.

In both episodes, large fleets attack the station with the intent of boarding/capturing it. The Klingons in <strong>Way of the Warrior </strong>want to capture Cardassian leaders holed up on the station, whilst the Dominon want to seize the station for themselves in <strong>A Call to Arms</strong>. On both occasions, their fleets close to point-blank range and slow to sublight speeds prior to engaging the station, and both fleets suffer a number of casualties.

So why, if there is an option to attack at a safe distance, do The Klingons and Dominon close to point-blank range and slow to sublight speeds? One claim is that they did not want to risk destroying the station, but presumably both the Klingons and Dominon would have some idea of what the station could take and react accordingly, adjusting their weapons. In the case of the Dominon, they wanted to prevent a strategically important minefield from being established by the <em>Defiant, </em>which was unshielded and unable to maneuver without risking destruction, yet no attempt was made to fire upon her from warp.

In the <em>Deep Space Nine </em>premiere <strong>Emissary</strong>, we see the fateful battle between the Borg and Federation forces. Given the highly dangerous nature of the Borg, and given their known course, why didn’t either side attempt a warp attack? This happens again in <strong>First Contact</strong>.

Another counter to the idea that warp strafing is a viable option comes from the film <strong>Nemesis</strong>. As the film enters its final act, Shinzon has the <em>Scimitar</em> attack the <em>Enterprise</em> whilst both ships are at warp. The <em>Scimitar</em> disables the <em>Enterprise’s</em> warp drive, forcing her out of warp.

At this point, warp strafing would make perfect sense. The <em>Enterprise</em> was restricted to sublight speeds and the <em>Scimitar</em> could have used warp attacks to make easy and safe attack runs against her. One possible counter is that Shinzon wanted to avoid destroying the <em>Enterprise</em>, but as with previous examples, all he would need to do is adjust his weapons (either yields or rate of fire) accordingly.

Instead, the <em>Scimitar</em> drops <em>out</em> of warp, <em>and</em> closes to point-blank range (so close in fact that, despite her cloak, she is hit repeatedly) and <em>then</em> continues the battle!

Another possible counter is that the Rift they were flying through would interfere with warp drive, but the <em>Enterprise</em> expected to sail straight through it!

So why is this supposedly perfectly valid tactic <em>not</em> used on a number of occasions where it would prove extremely useful?

The most obvious answer would be a targeting issue. A ship moving at warp would is not operating in normal space and could be subject to sensory distortions that affect its ability to target objects in normal space, <em>unless</em> the range is quite small (the greater the distance, the more difficult the feat). Another (related) problem would be that ships are not generally stationary targets, and tend to move, which would throw off targeting solutions.

Of course, this doesn’t explain <strong>Way of the Warrior </strong> or <strong>A Call to Arms</strong>, and the immobile Deep Space Nine. It’s position is known and is not going to change, so why did Klingon and Dominon forces close to within point-blank range (exposing themselves to enemy fire)?

The problem may lie with the interaction of objects at warp with objects in normal space. I’ve seen theories that warp drive uses mass lightening to allow ships to utilise the technology – if this is true, the impact from weapons fired at warp may not carry any greater effect than weapons fired from close range – added to targeting issues, it negates it as a viable option.

Another possibility is that some sort of ECM or jamming technology is being used. It doesn’t tend to be explicitly mentioned in the show (though <strong>Sacrifice of Angels</strong> does mention it), but it remains possible that jamming could make it decidedly difficult to hit even a stationary target.

It might even be a combination of factors. Problems with targeting caused by firing through the boundaries of normal space and subspace, combined with jamming, would explain the absence of warp strafing in the TNG era. It would also explain why warp attacks on sublight vessels occurred on a few occasions in TOS – jamming technology evolved to the point where the tactic simply wasn’t effective any more.

There. A complete explanation as to why warp strafing is not used. I challenge you to keep to the topic.

Deep Space Nine is armed with Photon Torpedoes: which track targets at Warp or Sublight with no issues either way. Warp Field interaction was addressed in the video, As WELL AS MULTIPLE ATTACKS ON SUBLIGHT TARGETS FROM WARP, including an asteroid and Enterprise itself. So you instead of watching it, you are countering what you think was said.

My accusations stand.

An attack launched far enough away by ships at warp would allow for a large salvo of torpedoes to penetrate the station’s defences and bring the shields and weapons down. DS9 isn’t going anywhere and can do nothing to avoid an attack.

Instead, what we have is not only clear references from Damar about being in weapons range when within only point – blank range, but DS9 also doesn’t attempt any ranged attacks of its own, despite your claims of torpedoes tracking targets. The best tracking we have seen from torpedoes is short-range, which further boosts MY position, not yours.

The weapon range of torpedoes is 300,000 kilometers, confirmed, both DS9’s and the attacking ships, and DS9 has thirty automatic torpedo tubes. Also, you tactic doesn’t require Warp: it requires DS9 to have only short-range weapons. Unfortunately for you, it has long ranged tracking warheads. 5000 of them. Put simply, that fleet is going nowhere.

Really depends on your ship, your target, and your objective. Fighting a sublight target at Warp Speed is great for evading incoming attacks, not so much for hitting specific parts of an enemy. (since both targets are maneuvering at very high speeds)

The real problem with Meerkat’s debate is the suppositions he continually makes:

“A ship moving at warp would is not operating in normal space and could be subject to sensory distortions that affect its ability to target objects in normal space”

Which is directly contradicted by literally every use of sensors while at warp in every episode of the series, starting with the very first.

“Problems with targeting caused by firing through the boundaries of normal space and subspace”

Which is never implied in any episode of the series at all, and directly contradicted by several episodes:

1. Balance of Terror (Enterprise warp strafing a ship that doesn’t even have a Warp Drive)

2. Elann of Troyus (Klingon warship straThe range of you speak of is not demonstrated in virtually any onscreen battle. You don’t get to throw out the close-range fights in Best of Both Worlds, Emmisary, Gambit, Way of the Warrior, A Call to Arms, Sacrifice of Angels, Tears of the Prophets, and many more, in favour of one episode where they state a range.

In fact, Tears of the Prophets is another good example of where warp strafing should have been used if it was an option. They were going up against orbital weapons platforms that were potentially very dangerous, but they also knew they were inactive. Torpedoes fired from warp would have proven effective and placed the allied fleet at no risk. Instead, they closed to near point-blank range (yet again) to engage stationary targets.

This is also the case in The Die is Cast, and in this case, whilst attacking a planet. Once again, if warp strafing were an option, they would have taken it – their mission there was to wipe out the Founders – they had no need to close to within such close range of the planet, but they did so anyway. The planet wasn’t going anywhere and a planet is obviously a huge target, yet they weren’t confident enough to fire safely from warp, at a great distance.fing the crippled Enterprise)

3. The Ultimate Computer (Enterprise strafes an ore freighter that is clearly at sublight speed) If there were ANY problems of that sort, they’d reveal themselves at least once, but they do not.

His debate seems to be “They must have targeting issues when shooting at targets not at warp, so here is why” but he hasn’t at all proven that there are any such issues.

The range of you speak of is not demonstrated in virtually any onscreen battle. You don’t get to throw out the close-range fights in Best of Both Worlds, Emmisary, Gambit, Way of the Warrior, A Call to Arms, Sacrifice of Angels, Tears of the Prophets, and many more, in favour of one episode where they state a range.

In fact, Tears of the Prophets is another good example of where warp strafing should have been used if it was an option. They were going up against orbital weapons platforms that were potentially very dangerous, but they also knew they were inactive. Torpedoes fired from warp would have proven effective and placed the allied fleet at no risk. Instead, they closed to near point-blank range (yet again) to engage stationary targets.

This is also the case in The Die is Cast, and in this case, whilst attacking a planet. Once again, if warp strafing were an option, they would have taken it – their mission there was to wipe out the Founders – they had no need to close to within such close range of the planet, but they did so anyway. The planet wasn’t going anywhere and a planet is obviously a huge target, yet they weren’t confident enough to fire safely from warp, at a great distance.

This in some respects only adds fuel for my arguments as to why warp strafing isn’t used. They have issues with targeting – Idazmi7 is actually correct when he points out interference between sublight and subspace isn’t directly mentioned, but it remains viable. The timing is crucial, you’re asking a weapon’s onboard targeting system to make adjustments whilst traveling at warp and aiming at a sublight target, and the window may only be a few seconds – if the targeting is out by even 1%, you’ll miss, and miss quite wildly.

This would explain why it’s not used – as the warp engines of ships in the TNG era have become more powerful and sophisticated, it’s created problems for warp targeting of sublight objects. How else can it be explained that ships drop to sublight, at ranges of only a few kilometres from their targets, exposing themselves to great risk? No commander would do that unless they had no other option.

“The range of you speak of is not demonstrated in virtually any onscreen battle. You don’t get to throw out the close-range fights”

1. Balance of Terror – the Enterprise is chased for over a minute at maximum Warp by a Romulan Plasma Torpedo.

2. The Changeling – the Enterprise hits a 2 meter wide target from 90,000 kilometers away with a photon torpedo.

3.Journey to Babel – the Enterprise hit an Orion ship with phasers from 75,000 kilometers.

4. The Deadly Years – Romulan ships are stated to have a 100,000 kilometer weapon range.

5. Obsession – the Enterprise I said to be “out of range” of a target 0.04 lightyears away. (378,000,000,000 kilometers)

6. Patterns of Force – the Enterprise hit a missile 2000 kilometers away with phasers.

7. A Matter of Honor – a Klingon captain orders his weapons officer to hold fire until 40,000 kilometers from the target.

8. The Wounded – the Phoenix engages a Cardassian Warship at 300,000 kilometers.

9. The Search, Part 1 – 100,000 kilometers is said to be “well within” the range of a Dominion Bugship.

10. Equinox, Part 2 – Voyager fires on Equinox from 30,000 kilometers.

I trust I have made my point.

In addition, The Die is Cast gives no reason for the fleet to be at Warp at all: the planet had no weapons at all, so there was nothing to dodge. (or so they thought)

From films: The Wrath of Khan, The Search for Spock, The Undiscovered Country, Generations, First Contact, Insurrection, Nemesis – all close range.

From TNG: The Arsenal of Freedom, Q Who, Yesterdays Enterprise, Tin Man, The Best of Both Worlds, Conundrum.

From DS9: Emissary, The Jem’Hadar, The Search (which despite statements, shows us the combat on screen and shows the range to be far smaller), Paradise Lost, The Die is Cast (the Jem’Hadar attack on the fleet), Way of the Warrior, The Maquis, Defiant, Indiscretion, Starship Down, Rules of Engagement, Shattered Mirror, Call to Arms, Sons and Daughters, Sacrifice of Angels, Valiant, Tears of the Prophets, Treachery Faith and the Great River, Once more unto the Breach, The Siege of AR-558, The Changing Face of Evil, What you Leave Behind.

From VOY: Caretaker, Scorpion, Dark Frontier, Night, Prototype, Dreadnought, Basics, Year of Hell, Hunters, Timeless, Think Tank, Equinox (the visuals clearly show the ships to be close to each other), Unimatrix Zero, Flesh and Blood, Endgame.

Prudence. A smart commander will not expose their forces to risk unless absolutely necessary. They could not have been absolutely certain the planet had no defences, yet they not only did not use warp strafing (which would have inflicted more damage anyway), but closed to a lot closer than 300,000km to attack. They were limited by something – the capabilities of their vessels.

The same goes for Way of the Warrior and Call to Arms. In both cases, the attacking fleets had to get right close to the station, pretty much ensuring they would suffer casualties, and a lot of them at that.

Once again, no commander would expose their fleet to more danger than necessary, yet once again, they closed to point-blank range.

Do you understand why this is yet? Or why they did so in all the other episodes and films I listed? They did so because they HAD to. They were operating within the confines of what their ships and weapons are capable of.

Those are just the examples I know of, that ALL depict combat at short ranges – so well done for providing other examples to support your claims (though some of are stated ranges and not actually observed), but as you will see, there are a great many more examples to back up my position. Curiously, warp strafing doesn’t come up in any of those examples either.

The issue is that warp strafing is not used against a variety of targets across a variety of situations from the TNG era onwards. It is not used in one-on-one ship combat. It is not used in fleet engagements. It is not used against stationary targets. It isn’t even discussed as an idea. Therefore it would seem SOMETHING is limiting it as an option.

So, my theory is that it’s a targeting issue, perhaps the result of problems for sensors caused by the more powerful warp fields of 24th century ships. After all, the examples you and Idazmi7 cite are from TOS.

It might be due to jamming as well.

Idazmi7, the absence of long-range combat and warp strafing from TNG onwards cannot be ignored. If they’re repeatedly not demonstrating these capabilities, it must be because they are limited by something. The weight of evidence is clearly against warp strafing and long ranges.

Several of my references are from TNG. 🙂

You didn’t watch my video. In addition, technology does not magically disappear: if they had Warp Strafing and Long Range Combat in TOS, they do in TNG.

You are correct, there are a couple of references to TNG. There are far many more examples I have presented that present short range combat. They have had numerous opportunities throughout those numerous examples to demonstrate warp strafing yet don’t – you have yet to present any rationalisation was to why this is.

The most likely answer (as I have already given to Kare) is problems with accuracy.
Doesn’t matter. As I already said Meerkat, the mere existence of short range fights or fights lacking warp does not make the weapon range become shorter, or Warp Combat impossible, any more than the use of a  gun at short range makes it become a knife.

“The planet isn’t going anywhere. They could fire from any distance, at any speed, giving themselves any possible firing window they needed.”

You are refusing to acknowledge the need for the cloaking devices, as if all planets are naturally undefended. That is ludicrous.

“Even the Klingons aren’t so completely stupid as to sacrifice lives needlessly”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=18hrzz-eGCI

Yeah… right. And the Dominion makes a new batch of troops every three days, so I doubt it would be a problem for them at all.

“Though in fact the risk factor is another argument against the widespread use of warp strafing – it would make sense that they cannot be sure of their accuracy at long distances and at warp.”

Wasn’t a problem against a totally cloaked Romulan Bird of Prey in Balance of Terror. I’d imagine that shooting uncloaked ships would be far easier.

“It is highly unlikely that warp strafing or long-range combat – if either conferred some sort of advantage – would be ignored so frequently, unless something is in fact limiting their usefulness.”

It’s called “Budget” and “visibility to the audience”. You will notice a direct increase in sublight combat around the time that visual effects became more practical.

“Idazmi7 has so far not deigned to comment on the glaring misses of large and slow ships by DS9’s weapons in ‘Way of the Warrior’ and ‘Call to Arms’, and those are but two examples out of many.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uDsBtPKhCos

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aZjhyAw3ODk

Show me this “many” you speak of, and perhaps I will decide to take that seriously, what with scenes like this. I could easily say that DS9 was simply shooting at ships that were in the far distance, that you cannot see. Especially since they always fire multiple shots at the same exact patch of supposedly empty space in ‘Way of the Warrior.’

You can’t point to what is a very small minority of examples and say they need to be taken as the most important evidence for range. If the weight of evidence is in favour of short ranges and sublight combat, then the onus is very much on you to explain why you feel your position is correct, despite the evidence.

You state I need to conclusively prove my point about accuracy. The episodes I have discussed are the proof. In ‘Call to Arms’, the Damar states at one stage that they’ll be in weapons range in one minute. The Dominion fleet then engages the station and is clearly within a range of a few KM at most, as demonstrated by the battle that we see. We therefore have visuals supported by dialogue that confirm this battle was fought at close range.

https://youtu.be/yJWZ5B3F94Q

I refer to time 3.25 in the video. The Dominion fleet is within visual range of the station and Damar hasn’t even referred to being in range yet. At 4.00, the station misses Dukat’s mammoth attack cruiser with one of two torpedoes heading for it.

At around the 4.11 mark to around 4.13, the Dominion flagship is slowly turning yet the station again manages to miss.

Keep in mind that this video doesn’t show the moment Dominion attack ships are sailing toward the station in a straight line and yet, the station can only manage to hit one of them.

We also have Sacrifice of Angels.

At around 0.55 of this video (https://youtu.be/yJWZ5B3F94Q

) some of the gently manoeuvring fighters are completely missed at point-blank range by the Cardassians. This happens again at around the 1.00 mark.

The 1.50 mark. The Defiant is flying in a straight line, a few KM from the pursuing attack ships, which repeatedly miss.

These misses continue to around 1.55.

Keep in mind these are only two examples thus far. I can happily provide more.

‘You are refusing to acknowledge the need for the cloaking devices, as if all planets are naturally undefended. That is ludicrous.’
I’m not even sure what you’re referring to here. If you’re referring to TDIC, whether they dropped their cloaks once near the planet or not, they would have to do so to fire. Only by closing to within point-blank range of the planet, they were potentially exposing themselves to any planetary defences, and going even deeper into enemy space. That really IS ludicrous, unless they had no other choice.
‘Yeah… right. And the Dominion makes a new batch of troops every three days, so I doubt it would be a problem for them at all.’
Your first video is not working. At any rate, given we have statements on being in weapons range by Damar, along with the video that shows the station being clearly visible prior to weapons range being achieved. They have comparable weapons ranges to the Klingons (as evidenced by the Dominion War), so it is far more likely to closed to such ranges because they HAD to. So, you need to explain (and make it an in-universe explanation) why so many battles are fought at close range, and without even mentioning warp strafing as an option, let alone trying it. Referring to budget and effects gives us both carte blanche to use that as an excuse to argue anything.
‘Show me this “many” you speak of, and perhaps I will decide to take that seriously, what with scenes like this. I could easily say that DS9 was simply shooting at ships that were in the far distance, that you cannot see. Especially since they always fire multiple shots at the same exact patch of supposedly empty space in ‘Way of the Warrior.”
As you will see from my previous post, I have already covered ‘Call to Arms’ and ‘Sacrifice of Angels’. ‘Way of the Warrior’ is no different. Wild assertions about ships in the distance are defied by what we have seen not only from the examples studied in more detail, but by the list of episodes I referred to earlier. My challenge to you is thus: Explain why (in-universe as well) all those episodes depict combat as a short-range affair. Explain why warp strafing is not even referenced as an option.
“At any rate, given we have statements on being in weapons range by Damar, along with the video that shows the station being clearly visible prior to weapons range being achieved.”
Magnification is standard on Star Trek ships since TOS. They see the outside through cameras, not glass windows.
“Wild assertions about ships in the distance are defied by what we have seen”
They are not wild: we just saw Voyager torpedo a torpedo from ORBIT and the Phoenix attacking a Cardasian Warship from ~250,000 kilometers. That, with  the fact that DS9 “missed” in the same exact directions repeatedly is more than enough evidence to support my assumption.
“So, you need to explain (and make it an in-universe explanation) why so many battles are fought at close range”
Actually YOU do. The reason why is because without such an explanation, only Out-Universe explanations are applicable… which would make them irrelevant to in-universe demonstration.
(Editor’s note: this is quite revealing as to Idazmi7’s position. He is using a different means to evaluate the abilities of the Federation and the Empire, one that let’s him change the parameters as much as he likes)
“Just checked: it’s working.”
Then I shall endeavour to check it later.
(Editor’s note: I’ve included the above two lines because they will shortly prove to demonstrate the presumptions and arrogance of my opponent)
“Magnification is standard on Star Trek ships since TOS. They see the outside through cameras, not glass windows.”
We weren’t viewing the fleet or station via a viewscreen. It was an external shot that put the station very clearly visible and the Dominon fleet wasn’t even in weapons range at that point.
“They are not wild: we just saw Voyager torpedo a torpedo from ORBIT and the Phoenix attacking a Cardasian Warship from ~250,000 kilometers. That, with  the fact that DS9 “missed” in the same exact directions repeatedly is more than enough evidence to support my assumption.”
The fact that we have visuals showing the station being clearly only a few KM away and statements that confirm the station wasn’t even in range yet would seem to rubbish the idea of shots being fired at distant objects. Which is further rubbished by Sacrifice of Angels and Tears of the Prophets, to name but two examples.
“Actually YOU do. The reason why is because without such an explanation, only Out-Universe explanations are applicable… which would make them irrelevant to in-universe demonstration.”
I’ve already provided one. Problems with long-range accuracy. The mere existence of long range examples merely underscores the difficulty – they CAN do it, but in limited circumstances and on rare occasions. Hence why there are so many more examples of combat taking place at short range. I await your explanation.
“Then I shall endeavour to check it later.”
There is no feasible reason to delay: it’s not a long clip at all.
(Editor’s note: This is the arrogance I was referring to – I am a father, husband, I work full-time, and I have a host of other interests before I remotely consider this sort of discussion. It was a nitpick gesture from Idazmi7, for no reason other than to be awkward)
“We weren’t viewing the fleet or station via a viewscreen. It was an external shot that put the station very clearly visible and the Dominon fleet wasn’t even in weapons range at that point.”
So the VFX crew thought (understandably) that seeing DS9 and the Dominion Fleet up close would look more dramatic than seeing a distant point of light and calling it a space station.
“The fact that we have visuals showing the station being clearly only a few KM away”
We also have canon confirmation of hundreds of kilometer ranges, even when firing at ships moving faster than light. The canon range doesn’t just “disappear” because the VFX crew repeatedly chooses drama over sense. There’s a scene in The Corbomite Maneuver, where Mister Scott clearly states that a radiation producing cubical object was 150 meters long, but the VFX say it was only 20 meters long. Simply put, visuals do not trump canon… even if you take VFX for gospel for some odd reason.
To illustrate your dilemma with a simulator: https://youtu.be/t4QPZC9G90U?t=11m Captain Shack (TheXPGamers): “Alright ladies and gentlemen, we’re back, and I’ve set it all up. This time, I’ve moved us back another 1500 or so meters… the maximum range for these torpedoes is about 10,000 or so meters, so… this is- this is still really close, way closer than you would need to be to fire and probably disable the ship.” Which is exactly what I’ve been saying for awhile now. Long ranged weapons that can be comfortably used at short range, are just that. Their long range doesn’t suddenly shorten, and then stay short to accommodate the shorter range observed.
“I’ve already provided one. Problems with long-range accuracy. The mere existence of long range examples merely underscores the difficulty – they CAN do it, but in limited circumstances and on rare occasions.”
No one ever says this or implies this in Star Trek except once: against the invisible Romulan ship in Balance of Terror, Mr. Styles says that hitting the target at 90,000+ kilometers would be “the wildest stroke of luck”, a claim never gain repeated for any other target regardless of distance or size. Obviously, because they were not invisible targets.
‘There is no feasible reason to delay: it’s not a long clip at all.’
Don’t make presumptions about what else I have to do – this debate is far from a priority for me. At any rate, what is your video trying to prove? That Klingons can be stupid? That shots were being aimed at distant targets? It proves the former, though it doesn’t prove the latter.
‘So the VFX crew thought (understandably) that seeing DS9 and the Dominion Fleet up close would look more dramatic than seeing a distant point of light and calling it a space station.’
Whether you like it or not, the visuals are canon too. Someone, in conjunction with production staff and the director, worked to develop those scenes. They provide us with the best means to measure what’s going on, and cannot be thrown out simply because you don’t like that.
‘We also have canon confirmation of hundreds of kilometer ranges, even when firing at ships moving faster than light. The canon range doesn’t just “disappear” because the VFX crew repeatedly chooses drama over sense. There’s a scene in The Corbomite Maneuver, where Mister Scott clearly states that a radiation producing cubical object was 150 meters long, but the VFX say it was only 20 meters long. Simply put, visuals do not trump canon… even if you take VFX for gospel for some odd reason. To illustrate your dilemma with a simulator:’
Fact is, the producers, writers and directors of these episodes have repeatedly chosen to display combat up close. Those visuals are as canon as anything else and far more numerable. You don’t get to dismiss them because of the occasional error. There are errors with dialogue too – I could use your argument to  dismiss all that.
‘No one ever says this or implies this in Star Trek except once: against the invisible Romulan ship in Balance of Terror, Mr. Styles says that hitting the target at 90,000+ kilometers would be “the wildest stroke of luck”, a claim never gain repeated for any other target regardless of distance or size. Obviously, because they were not invisible targets.’
It’s implied by what we SEE. Clearly, if they are missing at ranges of a few KM, they are having issues with accuracy. The longer the range, the harder it becomes. This conclusion is borne out of all the visual examples we have. It doesn’t need to be a statement from a character for the point to be true.
“Don’t make presumptions about what else I have to do – this debate is far from a priority for me.”
You typed the message: you could have easily clicked on a simple link in the time that took. Priority is not a necessity to do that, so don’t waste time trying to rationalize it as some time constraint.
“At any rate, what is your video trying to prove? That Klingons can be stupid? That shots were being aimed at distant targets? It proves the former, though it doesn’t prove the latter.”
So you have conveniently forgotten your own previous statements AND ignored mine in the same paragraph. You can look back up the comment chain to see what I was replying to.
“Fact is, the producers, writers and directors of these episodes have repeatedly chosen to display combat up close. Those visuals are as canon as anything else and far more numerable. You don’t get to dismiss them because of the occasional error. There are errors with dialogue too – I could use your argument to  dismiss all that.”
Again: close does not mean they cannot fire at longer ranges, as they commonly do. ALL of the ranges observed are canon. Which means they can shoot you from 30 meters or from 300,000 kilometers. Good luck dismissing canon by the way, it seems to be the single most common tactic used by Pro Star Wars debaters.
“Whether you like it or not, the visuals are canon too. Someone, in conjunction with production staff and the director, worked to develop those scenes. They provide us with the best means to measure what’s going on, and cannot be thrown out simply because you don’t like that.” I can easily say the same for the high ranges. In fact, I have. Visuals are for flavor only. “It’s implied by what we SEE. Clearly, if they are missing at ranges of a few KM, they are having issues with accuracy.”
They never have such issues at long range, which SUPPORTS my statement, as the weapon obviously loses some accuracy at shorter ranges. Of course, you’d need to successfully close to short range- without dying first -to take advantage of that, and even then you’re likely to die anyway.
“You typed the message: you could have easily clicked on a simple link in the time that took. Priority is not a necessity to do that, so don’t waste time trying to rationalize it as some time constraint.”
You’re the one who’s decided to waste time by turning this into an irrelevant nitpick. I will say again, and this will be my FINAL word on the matter, that you do not what else I have going on. Do not presume to dictate to me what sort of time I have to do what and when. That is incredibly arrogant and rude on your part. Now, if you’re done with this sideshow, let’s actually return to the discussion.
“So you have conveniently forgotten your own previous statements AND ignored mine in the same paragraph. You can look back up the comment chain to see what I was replying to.”
You were attempting to assert that we should assume the Klingons were being stupid in closing to close range, rather than being limited by the capabilities of their vessels. Unfortunately for you, the canon visuals and dialogue from the later ‘Call to Arms’ confirm what is already apparent from the many on screen observations we have – the Klingons closed to range because they HAD to (and even then, DS9 was still missing them, just as they were doing in ‘A Call to Arms’). Were the Klingons stupid when they boarded the station? Undeniably. They weren’t when engaging the station itself.
“Again: close does not mean they cannot fire at longer ranges, as they commonly do. ALL of the ranges observed are canon. Which means they can shoot you from 30 meters or from 300,000 kilometers. Good luck dismissing canon by the way, it seems to be the single most common tactic used by Pro Star Wars debaters.”
It’s you who wants to dismiss evidence and you’re refusing to even attempt to rationalize the evidence. It’s FAR more common for them to engage at short ranges – or have you forgotten the large list of episodes I provided earlier? You are picking and choosing to a tremendous degree.
“I can easily say the same for the high ranges. In fact, I have. Visuals are for flavor only.”
Wrong. Visuals are canon too. The directors and producers signed off on them. “They never have such issues at long range, which SUPPORTS my statement, as the weapon obviously loses some accuracy at shorter ranges. Of course, you’d need to successfully close to short range- without dying first -to take advantage of that, and even then you’re likely to die anyway.” If they have issues at short ranges, and they choose to fight the vast majority of their battles, that serves as ample proof that they have problems with accuracy! It stands to perfectly logical reason, given how far more common short range fights are, that they do this for a REASON. There is a pretty obvious reason right in front of your nose; I wonder if you can work out what it is.
“You’re the one who’s decided to waste time by turning this into an irrelevant nitpick. (…) That is incredibly arrogant and rude on your part.”
I would not have pursued it at all: except that you claimed a time constraint when you clearly had the time to read my comment and reply to it.
(Editor’s note: He didn’t need to make any remark whatsoever, except it did so, in an attempt to be cocky. As I have already noted, I am a father and husband first, ahead of anything else, and he knows nothing of the circumstances in which I can devote time to this.)
“Visuals are canon too.”
Exactly. Visuals are canon too. As in, there is more than just visuals. (and there is: I posted at least 10 examples already) (…all your arguments preceding…)
“If they have issues at short ranges, and they choose to fight the vast majority of their battles, that serves as ample proof that they have problems with accuracy!”
“in TOS battles rarely were given any specific descriptions for range and events. and very often what we saw was occuring at warp (either specifically stated or just through lack of statement to indicate a ship left warp) when we do have details given, we get stuff liek this:”
90,000km (against Nomad, the less than manshaped alien probe) 75,000km (against an Orion warship in journey to babel)
50,000km (against romulans in “the deadly years”. this battle also apparently occurs while the enterprise is at high warp through the nuetral zone, given dialog earlier and later in the film which does not indicate they dropped from warp)
.04 light years/378,000,000,000 (378 billion) kilometers (in “Obsession” vs the vampire cloud creature. during a chase with the critter said to be out of range. dialog suggests something along the lines of it being not too far out of range) 2000km (against a “V2” interstellar missile in patterns of force. kirk only gives the command to destroy it when it reaches that range, but this is shortly after it was launched) in TNG it depended on episode.
40,000km in “a matter of honor” (klingon ship against the Enterprise. range is indicated to be longer, as the klingon captain’s battleplan was to close to “close range” of 40,000km before opening fire to reduce reaction times on the target.) “the wounded” hasthe enterprise detect a battle between a federation ship and a cardassian convoy, and we get a play by play from data with tactical display visuals. gives us the follwoing numbers: 190,000km (photon torpedoes) ~150,000km (phasers) ~200,000km (Cardassian weaponry)
DS9 had more of the “close range cinematic” fights done for visual effects, but it also gives us: 100,000km – “The Search, Pt. I”, against dominion attack ships. dialog has said ships “well witihn weapons range” when tey reach that distance. 100,000km to 400,000km – “Return to Grace”. jury rigged cardassian planetary defense phaser on a freighter. in the firsttest the order to fire is given at 400,000km, but delays make it less (nearly a 30 second charge delay), while in the battle later on it gets used against a klingon ship at 100,000km. voyager is much the same: in “Basics, Pt. I” based on dialog and events, we get the following. over 2,000km (phasers) ~4,500,000km (Kazon-Nistrim torpedoes) 4,000km – “In the Flesh” (photon torps loaded with nanites) 30,000km – “Equinox, Pt. II” voyager doing precision fire against the Equinox’s warp core. I have more than that too:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uDsBtPKhCos – Shooting a 2 meter wide photon torpedo with a photon torpedo from orbit. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aZjhyAw3ODk – Casually destroying a Cardassian Warship from ~250,000 kilometers. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AusAGjwlql8 – Romulans using Klingon ships, range outright stated to be just under 100,000 kilometers. Also, Romulan commander ordered to fire at Enterprise while at Warp. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VCxjpx3vN1I – Romulan Plasma torpedoes chase the Enterprise for two minutes at Maximum Warp when fired from sublight. That’s several million kilometers minimum, against a moving target. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FZJlAxObczw – “We’re only running on impulse engines now… ordinarily we use the Warp Engines exclusively” http://www.ex-astris-scientia.org/inconsistencies/treknology-weapons.htm
“It is plausible that ships come very close to each other in a peaceful encounter, but the same seems to apply to battles. Although the distances in dialogues are usually hundreds or thousands of kilometers, their distance on screen is usually at most one kilometer. The real-world reason is obvious, as it is possible to shoot two ship miniatures at once if they are close to each other. Also for the drama it may be regarded useful if the enemies see each other almost “face to face” at point-blank range and not only on the viewscreen. It is controversial whether the definite statements or the definite visual evidence should be taken as true. I think that usually it would make no sense to come very close to a (possible) enemy, unless it was a suicide attack. The reaction times are simply too short, and the phaser yields can be considered still higher at short distances.
Only for a small ship that is going to fight a large one, the close attack would be a useful tactic, as the large ship could make use only of a part of its weapons at once, and the small ship would be hard to hit at a short distance, like we have seen it in DS9: “Shattered Mirror” or DS9: “Valiant”.” Mark Temple mentions a reason why point-blank combat could make sense: “One possible reason why many battles occur at relatively short distances was detailed in the TNG episode: “A Matter of Honor”. Riker, having become an officer on a Klingon ship, suggested closing to a very close distance from the Enterprise-D before attacking, “to reduce reaction time”. At such shot distance not only would both sides only have a few instants to decide what to do, but their ships would be able to enter and leave the weapons arcs of the enemy much more quickly. At a distance of several hundred thousand kilometers (as we see in TNG: “The Wounded”), it would take some time for a ship to pass through the weapons arcs, since it is a relatively slow moving target at that distance, and the area of the sky the weapons cover is much wider. Targeting such a distant target would be somewhat simpler, and more time could be spent refining the shot before firing without losing the target. At close range, the target would be changing its relative position much more rapidly, and finding a firing solution in the short period of time the target is within the firing arc of the weapon becomes more difficult.” Long story short: until an in universe character openly says “we can’t hit them at that any range above 100 meters” you really don’t have anything resembling an argument.
(Editor’s Note: the wall of text above is essentially a rehash of arguments he has already made. He is at this point resorting to repetition, a bad sign)
Idazmi7, your entire argument is nothing more than a rehash of the ground you have already covered, and once again ignores the far more numerable examples I have given, complete with yet another attempt to dismiss canon. The visuals are canon. You don’t get to cherry pick them and ignore them. The idea that ships are racing past each other at short ranges and therefore cannot easily target one another is rubbished by the languid way ships manuover past DS9 in the battles we have discussed, and also in Sacrifice of Angels (not to mention all the other episodes I have listed). You are trying to escape having to even try and rationalize anything, in favour of anything goes. Long story short, until you can justify your efforts to throw out canon, it’s you who lacks an argument.
“Long story short, until you can justify your efforts to throw out canon, it’s you who lacks an argument.”
I must be debating with a loon. The wall of text I gave you earlier was a list of canon that YOU are trying to throw out. Your credibility is officially dead.
Resorting to jibes eh? The final recourse of the desperate. The examples you gave were the examples you already gave and they are outnumbered by the far more numerable examples I have provided. You have tried to use artistic licence to completely dismiss them instead of even remotely trying to rationalize them. It is pretty clear who is cherrypicking and who isn’t. I do not dismiss the examples of long ranges; I place them into context and seek to explain why the vast majority of combat takes place at short range. Consider this. If Star Trek were in fact a documentary and someone were studying it to learn of the capabilities of Federation ships, do you think they would dismiss all that visual evidence as swiftly as you have? And before you say ‘Star Trek is not a documentary’, consider that, for the purposes of analysis, that’s the best way to view it – via suspension of disbelief. Otherwise you can arbitrarily ignore anything you don’t like, which is exactly what you’re doing.
This is where the debate is at currently. Needless to say, this page might expand as further arguments are added, though to be honest, at this point, it might be a worthless gesture.
Idazmi7’s position is basically one of being selective with the evidence. He doesn’t want to include the visuals because they damage his argument of long-range combat (and for that matter, warp strafing, which as I bring up in the discussion, is not even referenced as an option in TNG, DS9 or VOY).
Another aspect to Idazmi7’s argument is that it’s a Strawman of my own. I point out that the visuals and the dialogue need to be taken together, rationalised with one another – to which he replies that I am trying to throw out canon dialogue. I correct him… and he repeats his assertion.
I have since challenged him to a 1-on-1 debate on neutral ground – a debate site. I await his answer to this challenge with baited breath – in the mean time, I consider this particular discussion closed.