Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About ChahDresh

  • Rank

Recent Profile Visitors

628 profile views
  1. Strategic Commander/Captain Needa, perhaps? Always works on friendlies that need the help. You have to maintain speed and difficulty, though. Depending upon your ship's dial, Seasoned Navigator may do better.
  2. I still don't think Strikers do great with munitions, and I don't think Vagabond changes this. It is similar in theory to Jerjerrod-Prox in double Decimator lists, but the vastly smaller footprint (and smaller movement on the boost) of the Striker vice the Deci tames it. Fifth Brother looks like fun, and the combo with Homing Missiles does indeed work. Could be a jerk. The double-Force requirement keeps him in line, since preserving Force to use his abiity necessarily gimps that famous V1 defense. As a toss-in, though, I think he works better than Grand. Morna might work for fly-bys. Neither /sf pilot excites me, but I am all-in on Rush. Ini6 Silencers should be feared. Bossk gives us a decent named Z pilot for Scum, which is nice, but Nom looks particularly interesting, as the red linked rotate is one of the biggest weaknesses in that chassis.
  3. This caveat by you makes me so happy. I've been trying to tell people this for years. What's the joke about football commentary? 50% of it boils down to saying the team should have ran if it passed or should have passed if it ran...
  4. @Magnus Grendel You make some interesting points, especially with regards to Poe being a Jyn or Anakin Anakin. To some extent we can say that Holdo and Poe not knowing each other is a big factor here. Poe knows her only by reputation; it's hard to know what Holdo knew of Poe. The thing is, again, Poe has done plenty of covert ops before. We now know he smuggled in the past, meaning that while he (like Han) may be hot headed, he also knows when to play it cool. If she knows him by service record alone (likely), then it's wholly plausible she'd assume he gets the point. I mean, she does say "there is a plan" in so many words IIRC. And let's not forget that Poe staged his mutiny after seeing the transports being fuelled, and the prospect of losing the Raddus tilted him. Interestingly, it might have been better off if the Dreadnought attack failed. Because it succeeded, Poe was able to claim victory, and Leia's critique bounced off of him. If it had failed, maybe he gets the memo then, and never sends Finn and Rose on their desperate sortie. That, in turn, means they never communicate with Poe in the presence of the slicer, get sold out, and get exposed. That, in turn, would mean the Resistance personnel get away clean. If Leia wasn't willing to trade the bombers for a Dreadnought, she'd certainly prefer this outcome. Ah, but then what would have disrupted the Rey-Kylo standoff in the throne room and permitted Rey to escape? Oh, what tangled webs we weave.
  5. @ForceSensitive ah, but does Holdo tell no one? Can you determine how many people she told or did not tell? Almost everyone in the flotilla falls in line with Holdo's plan. It is only Poe and a handful of his pilots and friends that plot this alternative. It beggars belief that she told everyone, and yet her leadership worked just fine for everyone but Poe and a few people he could sway/that felt personal loyalty towards him. What's different between Poe and literally the rest of the Resistance? Poe being a trigger-happy flyboy, that's what. You wouldn't expect Holdo to tell the fighter pilots because at that point they have no fighters, ergo they have no role in executing the plan. Telling the pilots increases the risk of the plan spilling to no net benefit, something Poe *should* understand because that's how military organizations (especially covert ones like the Resistance) operate. You don't have to like Holdo. A lot of strife in this fandom comes from people demanding others like what they like or hate what they hate. However you feel personally about Holdo, though, let's not pretend that her choices were illogical or wrong. Poe screwed up, and his screw-up undid Holdo's plan. That Poe can recover from that screw-up into someone worth following is a testament to him, and part of the movie's thesis of failure being the best teacher. You don't need anyone to tell you why Holdo ascends to leadership. They say on-screen how their chain of command operates. You can review my notes on the Holdo maneuver earlier in the thread, but the key points are that ramming damage and the range of the attack are both proportional to mass. To deal damage, a small thing like a torp would have to get right up on its target, at which point explosives probably do more harm.
  6. Did you forget the whole "there might be a mole or transmitter" that makes OpSec the overriding concern? (A true to life thing in circumstances with far less at stake than TLJ. Also, that gets proven right when the slicer DOES give away the plan.) Did you forget that Poe had just demonstrated he did not deserve trust? Again, this isn't from Holdo alone, it's from Leia, who slaps, dresses down, and demotes Poe before Holdo enters the picture. You prepared to come at Leia? Also, Holdo comes with a reputation; Poe cites a battle in which she earned acclaim. That and the whole chain of command thing should be enough. That they aren't is an indictment of Poe, a reflection of where he is at that point of the story. He grows later on. It's a tragedy that he had to make such big mistakes to get there, but he does manage it, and Leia affirms it.
  7. Troop transports being torn apart by air support is true to life, though. That's the most believable thing on your list. After seeing what the ewoks were able to do with those big honking logs, i take no issue with the military might of a swarm of naturally camouflaged types on their home turf. The homing beacon doesn't have to be active for long. Given that the Death Star detects the rebel base immediately on ingress, one pulse- giving the system upon light speed emergence- would suffice. The Battle of Endor is silly. Presumably the Empire expended most of their starfighter support during the opening stages, and breaks between waves give the Rebels breathing room to regen shields, but yes.
  8. @FTS Gecko Yes, this is known as a red herring-- a plausible explanation, but not the one. It's a common device for upping tension and uncertainty. It goes a long way towards explaining Holdo's actions. She's not being needlessly antagonistic; she's being responsibly cautious. She has to take into account the possibility that there's a spy aboard, and keep her plans close to the vest. It cuts against the grain of Poe's character, because he's a man of action, but that's why it's all the more important that he learns it. (For the record, I thought the First Order was tracking Leia's hypercomm beacon for Rey.) @Red Castle's point about narrative perspective is insightful, too. For that matter, Red Castle, your discussion of the Holdo Maneuver hits a lot of the pertinent points. There are a few more to be made in addition. Coming about is the most dangerous maneuver you can execute in a fleet battle because it makes your position stationary (or close to it) for a significant time, making you easy to hit. Seeing as the frigate was being splattered with chasing fire from the First Order armada already, it would have been horribly vulnerable as the FO armada closed the range while the Frigate executed its come-about. Second, to inflict real damage, the target needs to be near the apex of your hyper-acceleration-- but before you make the "jump" from realspace to hyperspace. That's a pretty small target; presumably, only a highly skilled captain can pinpoint that spot. Third, we know (from other movies) that the distance it takes a ship to jump to hyperspace is proportional to its mass. The frigate would have had to get much closer to the FO fleet than the Raddus did, a prospect it was unlikely to survive. Ramming damage is also proportional to mass, meaning even a successful Holdo maneuver by a smaller vessel would not have inflicted the catastrophe Holdo's, er, maneuver did. Finally, of course, it's not something people train to do much because it requires you to have a large capital ship you never need to use again. That's not a common occurrence! The Empire, you might say, is ruthless enough to do it, but it needs those Star Destroyers to maintain order once the battles are won; there is a difference between being willing to lose a ship and throwing it away. The Resistance (and, for that matter, the Rebellion), being so much more resource-strapped, have even less occasion to try and use the Holdo maneuver, as nothing in their arsenal is "expendable". When you have only a handful of capital ships total, throwing them away is unsustainable. And, as we discussed above, doing so with smaller ships is much less viable, because there's less available mass and the range requirements are much tighter. The circumstances of the Holdo maneuver justify Finn's RoS characterization of it as a "one-in-a-million". Yet it is nevertheless consistent with Star Wars as we know it, dramatically effective, and spectacular to look upon. I dig it.
  9. Related notion: what's the population of Exegol? You'd think that it couldn't be big, given that the planet is in a permanent ion storm. Yet it's big enough to support 30K crewmen per Star Destroyer times how many Star Destroyers out of its military-age population alone? In a similar vein, the Empire was credited with ~25,000 Star Destroyers... an armada that took two decades and the resources of much of the known galaxy to produce. And Exegol, with its own resources, produced how many 50%-upscaled Star Destroyers while hiding their existence absolutely?
  10. @ForceSensitive I mean, we could discuss how Yoda explicitly downplays or distances himself from battle ("wars not make one great") but it's a minor point. And what you focused on in your post was primarily Rebellion/Resistance leadership... but again, it's minor. I think that's really neat that we almost got that additional voicework, but does something that almost happened but isn't in the movie count? Canonically (and for all but the most ardent fans), no, that didn't happen, so the point stands. Of course R2-D2 didn't get a medal because, in Star Wars, droids aren't treated as people. No matter what aspects of personhood they might exhibit, they are (by law and custom) the lowest form of cyber-organic life. That's what makes for such a squeamish comparison between him and Chewbacca. I mean, sure, not everyone who participated in the Battle of Yavin gets a medal-- Wedge and the Y-Wing pilot don't-- but they don't get brought up on stage. (They also didn't participate in the Princess rescue, which Chewie did.) You are incorrect about no one having to pilot the cruiser-- in fact, Holdo says as much explicitly ("If this is going to work, someone is going to have to pilot the cruiser"). Now, in the case of the support ship that went down, there was perhaps little utility in the captain staying aboard until the end besides naval tradition of captains going down with their ships, but that doesn't undo the point. As far as why he doesn't do the Holdo maneuver... I've thought about it quite a bit, and if you'd like to know my take on it, I can go there, it just might be another long post. Suffice to say that the RoS line "That was a one-in-a-million shot" isn't too far from the truth. The possibility of there being a spy aboard (whether Holdo or someone else) is a valid one, and the reason Holdo doesn't share the whole plan from the start. They don't know how the First Order is tracking them, so the possibility of it being a spy is very real and must be honored. That's why Holdo doesn't go around telling everyone what the plan is, because the probability of a secret being spilled is proportional to the cube of the people in on it. It's basic Operational Security (OpSec). It has the additional factor of being an attempt to teach Poe patience and faith, two things he exhibits a lack of earlier in the movie. He fails at those in the moment, sending Rose and Finn on their horribly long-odds mission... and, from it, he learns, in a way he didn't learn from his mistake with the Dreadnought attack. Leia blasts him instead of trying to talk him down because there is no time. At that juncture, every minute counts. The timeframe to split away from the cruiser while still being hard to spot by the pursuit is narrow. Expediency drove Leia's decision. Don't worry, I dig a good ol' long-winded, civil back-and-forth a lot more than rage and memes. *accepts proffered beer*
  11. @ForceSensitive I agree with your overall thesis about the movies, but I think you have misread some of it. For starters, it took a while for the OT to get as inclusive as you mention; the rebels we see at Yavin are exclusively white male humans with the exception of Chewie and Leia. Women in operations doesn't happen until Empire; Leia is the only woman who sees combat on the ground or in space. Aliens aren't in the ranks at all until RotJ; Chewie, you may remember, famously got frozen out of the medal ceremony after Yavin. Yes, it was good and valuable for the trilogies to eventually get there, but let's not overstate things. As for the sequels: aliens make up a significant part of the command staff and the pilot ranks, as do women. They suffer disproportionate losses in TLJ because there were many of them on the bridge, the seat of power, when the bridge was hit. There's professional respect between Holdo and the (male) captain who goes down with his ship. Rey doesn't want to hold hands with Finn while they're running because it's hard to run while holding hands with someone. (Try it.) Leia does lead with words, on several occasions. She stuns Poe because he was staging a mutiny. By military law, that carries the death penalty, but she stuns him. Why? Because she and Holdo are explicitly grooming him for leadership. Look to the end of the movie: when he starts to lead the survivors of the Resistance and they look to Leia, uncertainly, she says, "What are you looking at me for? Follow him!" He had to learn, had to fail, before he could be fit for leadership, and Leia and Holdo were willing to invest the effort to make that happen. The movies didn't change. The environment did. The audience did. We became hypersensitized to these things-- to our detriment.
  12. @FTS Gecko Also, you didn't engage with my contention about the Kylo revelation. It isn't solely that it makes Kylo wrong; that we could live with because of points of view. It's that it makes his seduction attempt, the strongest one Rey was ever going to get, pointless. "No one else values you but me" can't be true if Palpie wants Rey, too. That, in turn, means Kylo has much less to offer Rey in RoS-- that movie successfully shooting itself in the foot.
  13. That doesn't make sense. "Palp cloned Snoke" is not an answer to the question "Who is this person, Rey?" Also, the retcon job to explain Rey being Palp's granddaughter also means that Palp is an idiot. This supposed mastermind puppet master couldn't find a little girl who stayed in the same place on the same planet for a decade and a half, who very explicitly never left because she was holding out hope her parents would return and save her from her loneliness. He sent one agent, and when that agent didn't return, he just went, "Welp, that didn't work, I guess I'll just give up"? (This is RoS also inadvertently making TFA make less sense. Wowie-- a plot decision that makes all three movies actively worse!)
  14. Wall of text incoming. Also spoilers. The highlight of the sequel trilogy has always been the chemistry between and amongst the leads. RoS has that in spades-- makes it, in fact, the fulcrum upon which the movie rests. The connection between Rey and Kylo, and all that this enables and entails, is as solid a foundation as you could hope for. The actors sell it so well, even with the movie doesn't know what to do with it. Finn punches above his weight, as well, bubbling with faith-- in the Force, in the cause, in Rey. The other characters are as well drawn, charming and engaging and slimy as they should be, depending on who we're talking about. They carry the movie. It's a movie that badly needs carrying because of flaws both subtle and gross, both generically applicable and unique to the Star Wars mythos. It's too easy to call it a bad movie and leave it at that. Make no mistake; it is. But it is one that is able to push enough buttons, to lean on its stars and wars just enough, to be a worthwhile diversion. We can start at the micro level. One of the rules of fantasy or sci-fi stories is that you can make whatever rules you want, so long as they're consistent. Barely a few minutes in, RoS violates this with its "hyperspace skipping". The first time we hear about travel through hyperspace, it's from Han "never tell me the odds" Solo, who insists that they jump only with proper calculations done first. In RoS, the Falcon makes multiple jumps in rapid succession with nary a mention of doing the math first. I was annoyed when Cassian did a single jump in Rogue 1; this movie amplifies, magnifies the mistake. Almost as bizarre: the TIE Fighters following the Falcon follow it in its jaunt. Tracking through hyperspace was introduced in Last Jedi, of course, but it was resident only on capital ships. There is, throughout this movie, a tension to it in its relations to The Last Jedi. Some things it explicitly undoes, such as Rey's parentage or repairing Kylo's helmet (only for Kylo to doff it for good in the first 1/3rd of the movie); other things it grapples with uncomfortably, like hyperspace tracking, and some it handles clumsily, such as Finn's hurling at Poe "You're not Leia" (when Poe's main character arc in TLJ was growing into a leadership role Leia and Holdo were grooming him for). Because of this entanglement, some people are using RoS as an opportunity to relitigate TLJ-- either accusing RoS of trying to bury the better movie, or blaming RoS' failures on TLJ as the unworthy predecessor. I would say that RoS commits plenty of unforced errors; many of its decisions, like hyperspace skipping, are bad in-and-of themselves, regardless of where the ideas originated. The weirdness starts almost immediately. Kylo confronts zombie Palp and puts his lightsaber to Palp's throat. Palp offers him a fleet if he'll kill Rey. Kylo agrees, only to leave so he can go recruit Rey so she'll come with him to kill Palp and... seize the fleet... That is, the plot only happens because Kylo inexplicably decides to take the long way around to something he could have done in the first two minutes. This is typical of the movie: choices are made for spectacle or to give characters things to do, rather than because they make sense. The cavalry charge across the deck of a Star Destroyer turns out to be as inexplicable in the movie as it was in the trailers. Per the story, the Star Destroyers' shields are down because of the environment; in that case, if the goal is to destroy the Star Destroyer's comms, wouldn't a single starfighter strafing run be far more effective than a boarding action? If the bad guy who stabbed Rey's parents needed a wayfinder, knew he needed one, and knew where it was, why didn't he just take it instead of engraving its location on a dagger so he could come back later? The movie makes an ambitious grab for Lord of the Rings' record-setting number of death cheats. Rey is afraid she killed Chewbacca when she blew up his transport-- oh, but he was in the *other* transport! C-3PO's memory gets wiped-- ha ha, jk, R2-D2 has him backed up. Poe's spice runner gal pal (because if we're gonna make Poe be like Han he's gotta be LIKE HAN) gets blown up along with her planet... oh, turns out she has a ship after all, good timing. Pulling this sort of thing repeatedly makes us feel as if there are no stakes. This is a series in which character deaths have meaning. When plot armor gets too visible it undermines the whole enterprise. The film also has some JJ Abrams-specific quirks and failings: an abundance of bottomless pits and nary a guardrail to be seen; superweapon inflation; a complete mangling of time and space scaling. The Star Wars galaxy has never been large, but Lando traversing its breadth, rallying a huge fleet and escorting them all to the site of the battle, in a matter of... what, thirty minutes? Maybe an hour? I know the Falcon is fast, but darn! And yet... when that rallied fleet arrived, when they came to the rescue when all hope seemed lost, it was still emotionally affecting. I reacted to it. The movie can do that. It has that power. When Rey slipped Ben the lightsaber through their ForceTime connection and they engaged their respective foes in parallel, it was awesome! And when Rey and Ben came together to engage Palpatine... ...the movie let opportunity slip through its fingers. Duality is a theme of these movies, of the Force writ large. Some people were weirded out by Rey and Ben being a "dyad in the Force"; I dug it. It was foreshadowed in TLJ and paid off brilliantly here. For one to live and one to die, even in the fashion in which it's done here, is to let the promise of that concept go unrealized. It's especially so in light of the Kylo-Rey relationship. What Kylo offered Rey-- explicitly in TLJ but implicitly here-- is the promise of belonging. What Rey offered Ben was acceptance and forgiveness. Those are powerful themes! There are so many things they could have done, directions they could have gone, in mining those themes. Instead they flee from them. There's so much more I could talk about, so many choices that are weird or ill-fitting or that don't pay off. But that, I think, is what I come away with most strongly from this movie: that sense of squandered potential. RoS is an entertaining but bad movie. It could have been so much more.
  15. I liked Last Jedi a lot, and like it more in the wake of RoS-- not just relatively speaking, either. The cave sequence in Last Jedi was the visual representation of Rey coming from nothing, from no one. With RoS saying "actually she was a Palpatine", what does that mean for the cave sequence? It makes the cave sequence-- and Kylo's plea to Rey that "you're no one-- but not to me"-- less valid, less meaningful, retroactively. Given the choice between how that looked and felt and what RoS did with the change of direction, it's easy for me to say the Last Jedi approach was more satifying. It's consistent with the character flaw Rey has estabished in the first movie-- her loneliness, her longing to be part of something beyond herself. RoS does less with that idea. It tries to return to the idea of "the family you choose", and botches the execution of said idea while adding in a lot of weirdness, plot-wise. Let Kylo's temptation for Rey be that he's the only person who gets her, the only person who values her for all that she is. That's a heck of a lot more seductive than "your grandpa was evil so you should be evil too". (After all, Rey was training with Luke and Leia-- she knows first-hand lineage ain't the thing that determines your alignment! Why are we relitigating this?)
  • Create New...