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  • rattler2rattler2 Member Posts: 56,317 Community Moderator
    No... I don't think the Herald Sphere was the only Gateway in Andromeda.
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  • baddmoonrizinbaddmoonrizin Member Posts: 8,392 Community Moderator
    The Kelvans from TOS originally left the Andromeda Galaxy due to rising radiation levels which would render that galaxy uninhabitable to their species. I think that would be an interesting plot thread to pick up. Perhaps the rising radiation levels were due to something the Iconians were doing while they were there. The Kelvans could discover that the Iconians were responsible and come looking for retribution by invading the Milky Way.
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  • rattler2rattler2 Member Posts: 56,317 Community Moderator
    Which would be interesting... although the tech is a bit of an issue because I don't think the Kelvans were humanoid.
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  • lordsteve1lordsteve1 Member Posts: 3,492 Arc User
    The Kelvans from TOS originally left the Andromeda Galaxy due to rising radiation levels which would render that galaxy uninhabitable to their species. I think that would be an interesting plot thread to pick up. Perhaps the rising radiation levels were due to something the Iconians were doing while they were there. The Kelvans could discover that the Iconians were responsible and come looking for retribution by invading the Milky Way.

    In the real world Andromeda has "recently" collided with and swallowed up a several smaller galaxies so it could be some sort of natural disaster they fled away from. And star creation there has almost ceased going by our observations, so it could be said in a story that the place is dying off for some reason.
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  • rattler2rattler2 Member Posts: 56,317 Community Moderator
    Um... no.

    There is no reference to smaller Herald Spheres at all. There's the big Iconian one, that is generally referred to as the Herald Sphere, in the Iconia System, there's Solanae, and there's Jenolan. There is absolutely no reference to anything beyond that.

    So... um... source? Because the STF Herald Sphere is the same Sphere we see at the start of the Iconian War arc. We're just hitting the Gateway Hub inside of said Sphere.
    And there's no point in making moon sized spheres when you got that big one in Iconia.
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  • rattler2rattler2 Member Posts: 56,317 Community Moderator
    Alright... fine... you're right... BUT you're wrong about the NUMBER. You said three. There's only 1.
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  • warpangelwarpangel Member Posts: 9,427 Arc User
    edited November 2018
    lordsteve1 wrote: »
    The Kelvans from TOS originally left the Andromeda Galaxy due to rising radiation levels which would render that galaxy uninhabitable to their species. I think that would be an interesting plot thread to pick up. Perhaps the rising radiation levels were due to something the Iconians were doing while they were there. The Kelvans could discover that the Iconians were responsible and come looking for retribution by invading the Milky Way.

    In the real world Andromeda has "recently" collided with and swallowed up a several smaller galaxies so it could be some sort of natural disaster they fled away from. And star creation there has almost ceased going by our observations, so it could be said in a story that the place is dying off for some reason.
    Problem with that is our observations of the Andromeda galaxy are some 2.5 million years old. Whatever sent the Kelvans here was obviously much more recent.

    Anyway, I always thought the story of radiation levels in a whole galaxy was ridiculously out-of-scale. The iconians driving them out would actually be a lot more plausible.
  • rattler2rattler2 Member Posts: 56,317 Community Moderator
    I'd have to agree. With our understanding of science now vs back in the 60s... Galaxy wide Radiation Levels is rather ridiculous.
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  • duncanidaho11duncanidaho11 Member Posts: 7,624 Arc User
    edited November 2018
    warpangel wrote: »
    Anyway, I always thought the story of radiation levels in a whole galaxy was ridiculously out-of-scale.

    Actually, galactic scale radiation levels are serious problem that should terrify us in our sleep and change our approach to writing galactic-scale fiction. That or build a sense of awe for cosmic scales and the context for life. Here's recent peer-reviewed scientific literature: ;)
    https://arxiv.org/pdf/1710.03033.pdf
    https://arxiv.org/pdf/1409.2506.pdf

    The more active a galaxy is the less likely it is to sustain habitable planets through supernovae and gamma ray bursts and the denser a galactic region the more frequent these events become. In looking at the probabilities of total extinction events from GSB and SR as well as galactic morphology, it's currently estimated that only 10% of galaxies have calm, low-density regions (such as where we live) which can support planets which are inhabitable. In uninhabitable galactic regions, there may be planets existing in the "goldilocks zone" but these have been sterilized and will likely be sterilized again in the cosmic near future (geochemically, these planets probably would have little to offer hypothetical alien settlers.)

    In Trek, Omega molecules can have a disastrous effect on subspace. So, technomagic that Iconian use of omega-powered tech lead to increasing SR and GRB through subspace peturbations to make long-term habitation of Andromeda inviable over a relatively short timescale (and of course we wouldn't know about the increasing disaster for about 2.5 million years. See. speed of light.) Ie. similar to what happened to the Solanae Sphere's star but more so (due to wider scale.)
    Post edited by duncanidaho11 on
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  • markhawkmanmarkhawkman Member Posts: 35,231 Arc User
    rattler2 wrote: »
    I'd have to agree. With our understanding of science now vs back in the 60s... Galaxy wide Radiation Levels is rather ridiculous.
    It was considered OtT in the 60s, probably. The point was to come up with an explanation for why someone would want to evacuate an entire galaxy.
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  • rattler2rattler2 Member Posts: 56,317 Community Moderator
    I understand that. However we also do kinda have to consider that TOS was the same series that gave us some really weird stuff. And Spock's Brain.

    Galaxy wide Radiation doesn't make as much sense nowadays as a full on galactic invasion. If something was invading, that would give the Kelvans a good reason to evac just as easily without changing the narative.
    But in all reality, be it radiation or invasion, the point is semi moot and we're arguing semantics.
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  • rattler2rattler2 Member Posts: 56,317 Community Moderator
    Hm... that... might actually be the most plausible explanation for radiation. Thermobaric Radiation is rather dangerous, and we have seen the Sphere Builders trying to make GALACTIC habitable zones.
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  • duncanidaho11duncanidaho11 Member Posts: 7,624 Arc User
    edited November 2018
    rattler2 wrote: »
    Galaxy wide Radiation doesn't make as much sense nowadays as a full on galactic invasion

    ...but it does. The studies I linked to above used simulation modeling that wasn't available in the 1960's to estimate the implications of high-radiation events for life at galactic scales. By our current understanding, galaxies are mostly uninhabitable to life (over the long term) due to radiation from gamma ray bursts and super novae. To reduce the probabilities of life-scouring catastrophe, one must be dealing with relatively quiet, low stellar density areas which occur only in a portion of some galaxies. Just as there are certain conditions for life in the context of orbits, stellar radiation, tectonic activity, and geochemistry, there liekly are requirements for the evolution of life in galactic terms as well.

    TOS was probably referencing energetic phenomena like quasars as something Andromeda might turn into. Now we know that's not part of the forward series in the evolution of galaxies. But, there are still factors that can be used to explain the Kelvan migration (especially in the context of STO and the Solanae Sphere) provided we're not thinking about galaxies in the classical mode as uneventful (eschewing further developments in science while dismissing past theories, putting us back somewhere around the 1930's in the consideration of cosmology.)

    IE. STO probably has the best explanation available for what made the Kelvans leave andromeda (Iconians messing with omega-technology and widely inducing high-radiation stellar events) both in modern scientific terms and in Trek canon (it's a very well integrated bit of sci-fi) and I would love to see more done with the topic in STO at some point. It would be a great next step for sector map expansion.
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  • mustrumridcully0mustrumridcully0 Member Posts: 12,962 Arc User
    I am not convinced a galactic invasion is really making more sense than a galactic radiation event. Galaxies are frigging huge, and trying to invade a galaxy requires a lot of ships and soldiers - basically, an entire galaxy of them.

    A galaxy suffering from too much radiation is certainly more plausible, it changing majorly from habitable to uninhabitable over a short time frame might be less so. Two not very active galaxies colliding could perhaps cause a lot of new star formation, but that's still an event that would happen over millions of years, not decades or centuries.
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  • rattler2rattler2 Member Posts: 56,317 Community Moderator
    A Galactic Invasion would require something along the lines of a Tyranid level threat from Warhammer 40k. While true... it would also move a lot faster than radiation IMO.

    Who knows what kinds of technologies exist outside the Milky Way after all. Some super advanced, ancient species might actually HAVE the capability. We don't know. The one thing the Milky Way has going for it is the Galactic Barrier, something Andromeda doesn't seem to have. While we have seen a Constitution Class breach both the Galactic and Great Barriers, it seems more likely that any further attempts will either heavily damage or even destroy a ship making the attempt.
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    I can't take it anymore! Could everyone just chill out for two seconds before something CRAZY happens again?!
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    The resident forum voice of reason (I HAZ FORUM REP! YAY!)
  • duncanidaho11duncanidaho11 Member Posts: 7,624 Arc User
    edited November 2018
    For reference/reminder: here's the STO wiki on the Solanae sphere and what omega particles can do to stars.
    https://sto.gamepedia.com/Solanae_Dyson_Sphere
    • It was commissioned as an Iconian staging base when they were forced to abandon their homeworld after its orbital bombardment. The Sphere was capable of housing large armadas, sustaining a vast population, and traveling vast distances across the galaxy through subspace via a "jump" ability fueled by Omega Particles generated by the Sphere itself.
    • When the Solanae activated the Sphere, a large scale industrial accident occurred which generated large amounts of tetryonic energy and significantly reduced the energy output of the Sphere's central star. ** The effect on the star can be inferred by the spires dotted across the interior surface of the Sphere being optimized for a different spectral band than the one produced by the star.
    • It is implied that this accident changed the molecular structure of the surviving Solanae, forcing them to retreat into subspace to survive. The accident forced the Iconians to abandon the Sphere due to its flaws and left large amounts of residual tetryon particles which are still detectable in the present day.

    Note then that the same technology was being actively used by the Iconians in Andromeda to prepare for the invasion of the Milky Way over the presumed timescale of thousands of years. See. https://sto.gamepedia.com/Andromeda_Dyson_Sphere

    2+2 and see above modern scientific lit for the concern high radiation events imposes for the evolution of life and maintenance of habitable worlds at galactic scales. Narrative fiction gives us the short-scale drama, science gives us the principle to extrapolate from (what if technology could induce events like gamma ray bursts and supernovae?) and this works a lot better for the internal creative logic of Star Trek than an Iconian invasion for one very important and simple reason.

    The Iconians built up their galaxy-invading armada of the Milky Way in Andromeda. That did not exist at the time their civilization fell (they neither had the resources or the inclination.) So, if the Kelvans left because of invading Iconians...how, where, and when did they build the first galactic invasion fleet and why didn't they just use that to reestablish their presence in the Milky Way (their core motivation!) They had 200k years to choose their moment!

    There's a much better story to be had if you write the Iconians as refugees to Andromeda who used their technology and sphere infrastructure to establish a domain similar to what they had in the Milky Way but with darker overtones thanks to their recent experiences. Their complete descent to evil space wizards doesn't occur immediately with the fall of their homeworld, but the fall of this second domain to their own hubris and careless use of Omega technology (in building up the infrastructure necessary for their galactic invasion fleet and the fleet itself.) The incidental devastation wrought upon the locals may have been an initial concern, but it quickly fell by the wayside in the pursuit of the Iconians higher goals.

    It adds to the Iconian's existing arc, doesn't detract from their invasion of the Milky Way (as something unique and monumental, not just round two), and gives a great opportunity for a return to Andromeda to (among other things) resolve loose threads from the Iconian War (ie. what role, if any, will this superior power to the Alliance have in the formation of the Galactic Union? After the Iconian War, did anyone else not see their absence in future history as a massive red flag, inviting "what the hell happened to them?" They have no representatives at the Khitomer accords and Cryptic certainly had the NPCs on hand to at least throw in a Herald to the audience. One possibility: they went back to Andromeda to atone and reach self-actualization which is something Cryptic could be saving for possible future story arcs.)
    Post edited by duncanidaho11 on
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  • warpangelwarpangel Member Posts: 9,427 Arc User
    rattler2 wrote: »
    Galaxy wide Radiation doesn't make as much sense nowadays as a full on galactic invasion

    ...but it does. The studies I linked to above used simulation modeling that wasn't available in the 1960's to estimate the implications of high-radiation events for life at galactic scales. By our current understanding, galaxies are mostly uninhabitable to life (over the long term) due to radiation from gamma ray bursts and super novae. To reduce the probabilities of life-scouring catastrophe, one must be dealing with relatively quiet, low stellar density areas which occur only in a portion of some galaxies. Just as there are certain conditions for life in the context of orbits, stellar radiation, tectonic activity, and geochemistry, there liekly are requirements for the evolution of life in galactic terms as well.
    Except we're not talking about the stellar density of whatever portion of the galaxy, we're talking about an entire galaxy which supposedly WAS habitable suddenly becoming wholly uninhabitable in a ridiculously short timespan (10,000 years). Nothing in a galactic scale happens that fast.
    IE. STO probably has the best explanation available for what made the Kelvans leave andromeda (Iconians messing with omega-technology and widely inducing high-radiation stellar events) both in modern scientific terms and in Trek canon (it's a very well integrated bit of sci-fi) and I would love to see more done with the topic in STO at some point. It would be a great next step for sector map expansion.
    Sure, why not. Space magic can do anything. I mean, if they can excuse the dowright laughably unrealistic FTL supernova from JJTrek with "iconians"...
  • duncanidaho11duncanidaho11 Member Posts: 7,624 Arc User
    edited November 2018
    warpangel wrote: »
    Except we're not talking about the stellar density of whatever portion of the galaxy, we're talking about an entire galaxy which supposedly WAS habitable suddenly becoming wholly uninhabitable in a ridiculously short timespan (10,000 years). Nothing in a galactic scale happens that fast.

    This is a sliding scale of objection, first it was geographic scale of radiation. Now it's timescale. To meet the dramatic needs of creative fiction, a trigger needs to be invoked. That's been done through the mechanics of the medium (which can be placed exactly to when and where the problem took place) to provide a cohesive bit of sci-fi entertainment.

    An Iconian invasion fleet forcing the Kevlans out, to be blunt, would be terrible writing. It neuters the Iconian's collective character arc (ie. there is no arc, just two points and a line between loosing Iconia and invading galaxies. Even if you presume they sat in subspace for a while building up the first fleet [out of literally nothing], there's no story there) and trivializes the import of invading the Milky Way while invoking a downright silly scenario of using one galactic invasion fleet (pulled from the aether) to make another (which required long and careful setup in Andromeda, adding to the dramatic tension of the Iconian War) for no better reason than to find an alternate explanation for something that is readily explained in universe, with references to current scientific lit on the principle of how radiation events can make galaxies uninhabitable to life (if in less dramatic terms than fiction.)

    warpangel wrote: »
    Sure, why not. Space magic can do anything. I mean, if they can excuse the dowright laughably unrealistic FTL supernova from JJTrek with "iconians"...

    You have played the Solanae arc, right? Omega molecules affect subspace. The problems of that tech aren't bound by light speed and Omega tech was invoked in the increase of stellar radiation from the Solanae star (making the sphere uninhabitable, explaining why it was abandoned.) Cause, effect, and it's consistent with the game's internal fiction and can reference external science for a rough narrative base. In the discussion of fictional logic, this is a very straight forward matter and pretty much a best case scenario for world building. Your alternate explanation is neither necessary or more consistent. You have to assume that practical considerations don't hold on any level (galactic invasion fleets are a dime a dozen) and that the Iconians are just insane for conquering another galaxy with tools they could have used to satisfy their singular quest for vengeance and ascendancy in the Milky Way.

    "Invading the Milky Way means everything to us, but first let's have a go at Andromeda for funsies. Yeah, that'll show those other people who devastated our homeworld and nevermind the risk of failure [and disaster for our long-term goals] in this incredible venture across 5 million light years!" [there and back] Why did we fall in the Milky Way if we had the technical capability to conquer Andromeda as a mere step one of a larger plan? Shut up, that's why!" :tongue:

    Seriously, if your villian's plan for conquering a galaxy involves conquering a much larger galaxy (over twice the radius) as a mere prelude then you might want to simplify your writing. It cuts against both practical reasoning and the use of character motivation in fiction, throwing both of those out in the name of finding a "better" answer. In which case, why complain in the first place? If you have to abandon narrative logic to justify an outrageous scenario, what's so difficult about accepting the one that's already in place?
    Post edited by duncanidaho11 on
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  • duncanidaho11duncanidaho11 Member Posts: 7,624 Arc User
    edited November 2018
    Let's try something a little more out there, but within the scope of Star Trek... What if some sort of massive noncorporial life form slightly out of phase with our dimension is syphoning "good" radiation out of Andromeda and replacing it with "bad" radiation. Essentially it's a massive trans-dimensional parasite that is just existing, with no malice, and yet is destroying Andromeda... The process takes millions of years, but when done with Andromeda, the Milky Way will be next.

    Meh, the Iconian->Omega Tech->Wide increase in cosmic radiation (STO used tetryon but gamma rays would have done just fine) mechanism is already in place and would make great setup for a future expansion (or Foundry challenge) that provides a deeper resolution to the Iconian Arc. A god-like being who can only interact with galaxies the level of tapping background radiation over millions of years also doesn't seem to offer much in terms of space combat. ;)
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  • rattler2rattler2 Member Posts: 56,317 Community Moderator
    The Sphere Builder angle would make more sense than the Iconian Angle for radiation.
    What's the primary element in a Sphere created Expanse? Thermobaric Radiation. And we've seen these things grow rather fast too. Also in game we have evidence of Sphere Builder experiments in alternate realities exterminating entire galaxies.
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  • duncanidaho11duncanidaho11 Member Posts: 7,624 Arc User
    edited November 2018
    rattler2 wrote: »
    The Sphere Builder angle would make more sense than the Iconian Angle for radiation.
    What's the primary element in a Sphere created Expanse? Thermobaric Radiation. And we've seen these things grow rather fast too. Also in game we have evidence of Sphere Builder experiments in alternate realities exterminating entire galaxies.

    I'm going to have to disagree with you here, the Solanae sphere was made uninhabitable due to Tetryon radiation because the interaction between omega tech and the sphere's star. This is a direct causal mechanism, established in game, that can be placed in the Andromeda Galaxy through such constructs as the Andromeda Sphere. The scale of the problem we also have through basic background on Omega.

    The Iconians were free to develop a galactic invasion fleet in Andromeda somewhere over a span of 200k years. How exactly would a separate alien faction with technology known to cause wide areas to become uninhabitable due to the FTL effects of their technology fit into this? Did they simply lease out some space to the Iconians for their unprecedented military build up, making use of omega molecules which can destabilize gigantic areas of space? Why would the Sphere builders risk even an accident involving omega on their doorstep? Why would the Iconians risk having the Sphere Builders as neighbors, potentially destabilizing their technology? How would the Iconians (who fell from conventional attack) come out on top in a conflict if it came to that? And why would the Sphere Builders bother testing in Andromeda (a much larger galaxy to the Milky Way, their key target given history) when they have other universes at their disposal? Why would they even need the Milky Way if they had successfully converted large areas of Andromeda? Further expansion risks antagonism that wouldn't come if they remained within their species-excluding dead-zone.

    (Iconians being the key players in Andromeda history, both recent and future, takes care of all of this.)

    So, why (in fiction) do we need a second explanation for what's already presented in-game? I'm really not seeing where you guys are coming from on this one, deleterious stellar radiation as a secondary consequence of Iconian tech fits really well with what went wrong with Andromeda. Trying to invoke something else wouldn't seem to introduce anything other than overcomplication to arrive a point that (to me) would seem to offer a lot less in future story telling potential.
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  • phoenixc#0738 phoenixc Member Posts: 4,646 Arc User
    edited November 2018
    It could be that the Iconians initially just moved to Andromeda and would have stayed there except for it becoming uninhabitable for them for the same reason as the Kelvans. And the galactic collision could provide the answer for why.

    The Milky Way has a giant singularity at the center, and there is the theory that all galaxies may have the same. Now, what if the Andromeda singularity collided with that of the one that was passing through? Computer simulations show there would be massive gravity ripples and probably a high energy radiation flash. For that matter, collisions between smaller singularities if they lacked central ones could make quite a mess, especially if it triggered some weird chain reaction in nearby stars.

    Maybe the Iconians got tired of getting run out of town and decided to go home even if it took getting really nasty about it. If the place was being slowly fried by a wave of gravity and radiation travelling out at lightspeed they might not have thought twice about polluting Andromeda with their own radiation since it would be fried soon anyway, and that could have played a part in the Kelvan evacuation too, with them thinking it was some spontaneous thing caused by the collision (maybe the event pulling cosmic strings in a way similar to the tiny membrane pinch that quantum torpedoes use) instead of alien activity.
  • mustrumridcully0mustrumridcully0 Member Posts: 12,962 Arc User
    It could be that the Iconians initially just moved to Andromeda and would have stayed there except for it becoming uninhabitable for them for the same reason as the Kelvans. And the galactic collision could provide the answer for why.

    The Milky Way has a giant singularity at the center, and there is the theory that all galaxies may have the same. Now, what if the Andromeda singularity collided with that of the one that was passing through? Computer simulations show there would be massive gravity ripples and probably a high energy radiation flash. For that matter, collisions between smaller singularities if they lacked central ones could make quite a mess, especially if it triggered some weird chain reaction in nearby stars.
    I think the biggest problem with that is that the events would still take a long time to unfold compared to the lifespan of a civilization. If two supermassive black holes collide within a galaxy, things would start happening once the second black hole starts to interact with elements in the other hole's accretion disk. Most likely, the material in these disks would heat up even more than usual, and that would probably happen over millions of years.
    Maybe it's possible when the second black hole is moving very fast, close to the speed of light? But it seems that would have other side effects, aside from seeming unlikely.
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  • warpangelwarpangel Member Posts: 9,427 Arc User
    ruinthefun wrote: »
    Considering that Star Trek has a fluidic space dimension where space is instead a fluid, it could very well be Nastyon radiation from the Dimension of Pain.
    Or maybe the Kelvans left the AC off too long, the Andromeda galaxy got a bit waterlogged and and is now overgrown with Discovery's magic subspace fungus. :D
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