Friday, 27 July 2007

Vehicle of the week 10 - Borg Cube

Well, this article will wrap up the weekly articles, covering the vehicles of various Science Fiction franchises, there's plenty more I could have done (and if you've read through my list and are incensed that I've left you're favourite out I'd be more than happy to pick it up again) but for now I think ten is a good number to stop before I run out of steam. I'm having a week off, so there won't be a weekly article for a bit, but hopefully I'll come back fresh with a new category and a bunch of other articles I've got in the pipeline - but for now it's time for the last ship, which falls to Star Trek and the infamous Borg Cube

Borg Cube

Multi-purpose Borg combat vessel
Manufacturer: Borg Collective
Length: 28 kilometers
Speed: Transwarp capable
Weaponry: Tropedoes and cutting beams
Affiliation: Borg Collective
Captain: Borg Collective

The simplicity of the design for this ship is a remarkable feat in my opinion, before we even meet the borg, the fact that their ships are designed to look like simple geometric shapes says a lot about them. Of course the workings of the cube are much more intricate then it's general shape, but to see the design tells you the owners of this ship don't care about aesthetics, a need to create a tactical superiority or any need to try and prove to you that they are stronger - and that is what makes them scary. Whenever a cube shows up it is always an impressive sight - not least because they are absolutely huge - completely dwarfing pretty much any other ship in Star Trek, with a design as cold and frightening as their merciless inhabitants.

Cubes were the primary vessels of the Borg Collective, serving as bases, warships and centres from bringing new species for assimilation. Their basic design was signature borg, all their ships had simple designs from spheres to rectangular scout ships - even the Borg Queen's ship was a basic diamond. Aside from the sprawling technological masses of their larger bases, such as Unimatrix One, the Borg kept thing simple and always functional. Cubes were always a terrifying sight for any species that shared the Delta Quadrant with them or were subject to their further raids. One cube was sufficient to combat several of the warships of other species - at the battle of Wolf359 only 1 of the 40 Federation ships there survived against a cube. The Cube's strenth was the same strength as the species - assimilation. A Borg vessel could quickly understand the technology of other species and adapt it, and even steal it in the midst of a battle, and the capture of one valuable member would endow the Borg with enough tactical knowledge to hold off most assaults. It took all the combat power and ingenuity of other species just to hold them off.
It is unclear what the primary function of the cubes were - the presence of "Tactial Cubes" with greater armour and firepower suggests that they were not primarily combat vessels, though the Borg certainly used them as such. It is more likely that the cube's main function was to assimilate species and technology, and it was generally assumed that a cube could get past any defences stopping their way. Above all Cubes and thei crew lived to serve the collective and, despite their strength, were considered expendable as demonstrated when the Borg Queen detonated several cubes just to erradicate a small number of disconnected drones aboard them. Very few ships were able to survive multiple encounters with the Borg and escape assimilation - the most notable being the USS Voyager who'se crew proved remarkable adaptable to Borg techniques and successfuly survived attacks and even managed to take the fight to the Borg and win on several occasions. Before returning home Voyager was able to criple Unimatrix One and the Borg Transwarp hub, severely damaging the Collective and killing the queen - but it's unlikely the galaxy has seen the last of a borg cube.

1 comment:

Samuel Li said...

HI Aled, Erm, you know trhe whole Dr WHo thing, timestreams whatever, he can't meet himself until blah blah blah
how come in the episode with the reapers, they see themselves depart? Please explain as your knowledge of this stuff is far supieror to mine.