Aotrs303 Midnight Dreadnought
The Midnight class Dreadnought is the most common of the Aotrs capital ships, appearing where most fleets would have battlecruisers or battleships. The Midnight was a late first-wave ship which benefitted greatly from the designs of just a few year’s prior. It combines an excellent turn of speed for a vessel of its size, with a powerful weapon loadout and superior protection.
The Midnight’s prevalence is partly due to the end of the supercruiser era. With the supercruisers finally having stopped occupying the docks and supplies, the Aotrs had an abdundance of engineers and shipyards now used to building larger ships. As typical for the Aotrs, a skill-resource is never squandered and many of these shipyards set to building Midnights. The Midnight fills many of the supercruiser’s roles in miniature. It is in many ways, then, the spritual sucessor to the supercruisers.
The Midnight often serves as a command ship for smaller fleets and a ship of the line in large ones. It also often deployed in its own as a commerse raider, at which it excels; as few convoys are prepared for an ambush by a dreadnought. Military supply convoys have learned to dread the sudden appearance of a Midnight bearing down upon them, like an battleship of ancient times.
The Midnight’s armaments start with the two massive Class 30 warhead launchers in the bow. Thrice the size and power of the typical warheads used by most of the fleet, the Midnight’s weapons can devastate an opposing target from range. In addition to the heavier missiles, capable of punching though armour, the Midnight’s larger tubes can fire heavy torpedoes, capable of tearing right through both shields and armour before detonating. The Midnight typcially has a further range of munitions available to it in its cavernous stores.
Once a target is softened up by long-range fire, the Midnight can close into the range of its numerous heavy coldbeam turrets and emplacements. A little closer still, and the opponent, likely now badly damaged and bereft of shields and armour, is easy prey for the dorsal energy beam cannons in their double turret mount. Both beams can rotate independantly of each other and the main turret platform itself, allowng a wide range of potential applications or targets to be engaged.
In one notable instance, the LSS Annhilating Execration was tasked to retrieve valuable equipment (of a classified nature) from an asteroid base. Captain Skyslaughter manouvered the Annhilating Execration so that the asteroid base was above it, and fired the twin beams vertically, while spinning the main turret. The twin beams neatly cored the station around the vital gear like an apple. By then corkscrewing out the beams, the dreadnought sliced apart and scattered (due to the direction of the force) the rest of the asteroid and the base with it. The cored section was then easy to simply grab with the Annhilating Execration’s tractor beam and tow away at leisure. This attack has been sucessfully conducted on at least two other occasions on a large enemy capital ship and once against a swarm of surprised light vessels by other captains taking Captain Skyslaughter’s example.
Finally, the Midnight has a dedicated point-counter measure system and a plethora of anti-fighter turrets. It originally had half as many of these, but improvements and refinements to the engines as the new 10th generation engines were shaken down allowed a little more mass to be added with no let loss of drive power or drain on the power core.
In 2345, the Midnight family completed its first full upgrade. Further powerplant advancement enabled the ship’s engines to be upgraded for even more speed. This was facilitated by the Midnight’s supercruiser ancestry – having learnt the lesson the hard way about how large components like power cores could become difficult to replace on large ships, the Midnight’s was designed in modular sections, so that dismantling it and removing and replacing it did not require cutting apart the entire ship to get to it, and could even be done segment-by-segment. Despite a 7% increase in mass, the Midnight was a third faster, and with additional power to add 6% more shielding.
The Midnight has two principle variants in the field, the Midnight A and D (which will be covered at a later date). There are other variants of the Midnight believed to exist or be planned, but no concrete information about these vessels is known.