UPF Involvement

jedion357's picture
jedion357
December 8, 2011 - 9:32am
An important question is what will trigger or not trigger UPF involvement? There will of course be a difference between official and unofficial involvement. On one hand the UPF will officially not be involved but its not likely that it would not be unofficially involved. Second important question is do you want the UPF involved?
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!
Comments:

jedion357's picture
jedion357
December 8, 2011 - 9:37am
Likely that the UPF does not get involved in a civil war but if planet x decided to conquer planet y it would have to. Also if the were any weapons of mass destruction used then it would have too retaliate against the party that used them.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

TerlObar's picture
TerlObar
December 8, 2011 - 2:48pm
My take is that if it leaves the atmosphere of a planet, the UPF will get involved.  Even if it is just there to protect 3rd parties from the conflict.  If it is something occurring between two planets or two systems, they will definitely get involved as the issue will be spilling out into the spacelanes which is SpaceFleet's jurisdiction.

The only possible exception to that is if it is contained to a single system and it is acknowleged that there is one govenrnment for the entire system.  And even then SpaceFleet will show up just to keep an eye on things.
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jedion357's picture
jedion357
December 8, 2011 - 3:00pm
THat was more or less my opinion too, Tom. Though I 'd like to be able to write an adventure with KH's encounters included. Opening stage could see KHs action before Space Fleet can gets assets to the system. [Note to self look at the campaign map and based on the sathar start circles extrapolation areas of higher Space Fleet vigilance and work up a chart of response time for Space Fleet to respond to an emergency with at least a small patrol group.]
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

TerlObar's picture
TerlObar
December 8, 2011 - 3:26pm
Actually, I would probably say that SpaceFleet has a small patrol group, of at least an AS+Frigate, if not more, in every system of the Frontier at any given time.  SpaceFleet has to be much bigger than what is listed in the order of battle for the SWII game or there really isn't any point.  It would be significantly outnumbered by heavily armed private and corporate ships and wouldn't really be able to enforce anything.  I've always assumed that the ships and militias listed for that game were done so for balance (and to make the number of ships managable) and length of game play.  The true number of ships in SpaceFleet is probably 2-4 times that number at least.

So if anything started to go down, there would already be a small SpaceFleet presence in system that could respond, even if it was just to observe initially if it can't intervene while it calls in for reinforcements.  And since there are these small forces all over, you would have reinforcements showing up from neighboring systems within a week.
Ad Astra Per Ardua!
Webmaster - The Star Frontiers Network & this site
Founding Editor - The Frontier Explorer Magazine
Managing Editor - The Star Frontiersman Magazine

jedion357's picture
jedion357
December 8, 2011 - 7:47pm
Yeah the book lists small patrol groups as a frigate and two assault scouts, but I've thought that the difference in engine capabilities between these two ships makes that pairing impractical, patrol groups would function better two frigates or flotilla of four assault scouts.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

TerlObar's picture
TerlObar
December 8, 2011 - 5:10pm
It depends on what the patrol patterns are really.  I see them as moving to a system and then staying there for a while (several months) before moving on.  The AS have to do overhauls after each jump on the way to their assigned duty station but assuming two engineers per AS plus assistance from the engineers on the Frigate, they won't take any longer than the astrogators doing the jump calculations.  And then once in system and overhauled, it's a non issue for the duration of the patrol.

For constantly roving patrols it makes much more sense as you say to have patrol groups make up of ships with similar engine types (and therefore similar overhaul schedules).  But for more stationary "patrols" a mixed fleet works as well.

Ad Astra Per Ardua!
Webmaster - The Star Frontiers Network & this site
Founding Editor - The Frontier Explorer Magazine
Managing Editor - The Star Frontiersman Magazine

rattraveller's picture
rattraveller
December 8, 2011 - 7:07pm
My thinking is that Spacefleet would only involve themselves if UPF interests were threatened. After all they did not involve themselves in several corporate wars or in the Dramune System wars until things got really bad.

When it comes down to it they are not the enforcers of law throughout the Frontier and usually let internal politics be decided by individual planets. Of course we need to determine how big this war is going to be.
Sounds like a great job but where did you say we had to go?

thespiritcoyote's picture
thespiritcoyote
December 9, 2011 - 10:33am
In a play of devils advocate here, there is a question - Where is it shown that SpaceFleet actually can enforce anything?
Frequently it seems they are over-taxed and underpaid, barely keeping any peace, and only the law of a polite armed society actually keeps things civil enough for them to only need to focus on the worst problems with what little they have.
Oh humans!! Innocent We discover a galactic community filled with multiple species of aliens, and the first thing we think about is "how can we have sex with them?".
~ anymoose, somewhere on the net...

so...
if you square a square it becomes a cube...
if you square a cube does it become an octoid?

jedion357's picture
jedion357
December 9, 2011 - 1:09pm
To answer the advocate of the devil :) What sort of treaty organization would the United Planetary Federation be if sovereign planets could be attacked and it did nothing? That is the crux. I think I would like to craft a situation where there is a council of clans on both inhabited bodies in Athor system but no actual constitutional document. In effect a de facto government. The government of Hentz, once violence has erupted, will week to assert that this is an internal matter and that Yast and Exib are its colonies, since they have no constitution (no yazirian planet or moon does) and since the Fo1 has conviently lost all record of forcing Yast to pay for the Tera forming that GODco has done on Yast and including enough fast talk and bluster by Hentz's representative at the Council of Worlds. Yast (but not Exib) has been represented by a representative that they have sent to the Council of Worlds . Hentz will assert that this rep was approved by them but has been recalled for collusion with rebels and terrorist. Its all crap of course but they're hoping that the Council of World will hesitate long enough for their militia to crush the insurrection.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

thespiritcoyote's picture
thespiritcoyote
December 10, 2011 - 6:33am
I don't mean to suggest I think they are compleatly irrelevant, but in a strict view of shown force I do not see evidence of an 'Ironclad Curtain' of defensive(or offensive) capability... it may be enough that their existence is merely a matter of being the best option... no one other force may be stronger, but no one other force is even close to being as organized... does not mean they have the capability to respond in a real crises, or be in every system on the map either.

The general feel keeps coming back to me as - they only have shown force of appreciable notice in the worst situations - two Sathar wars, a plague outbreak, and a corporate entanglement - and nothing observational suggests that any of those ended half as well as basic propaganda and a general public 'nationalisim' response could cover.
Related to the feel I get of SpaceFleet capability, is that the PGC is somewhat considered to be on near equal footing (possibly even better off) than SpaceFleet and the council, as the single most untouchable economic force in the frontier - partially due to sanctions grandfathered from the council, partially due to many suggestive comments that they have economic stability beyond any formal jurisdictions or even any of the main mapped routes, and they are frequently shown in the form of, better ships, more dedicated trained troops, and more altruistic supported bias and financial pay for a higher loyalty base...
The only other two 'fleets' that are even close to comparable are the CFM/Rim Coalition, and the 'StarLaw Liberty Milita' - neither of these measure up to either the PGC or SpaceFleet, they are just better than any other mega corporation's (save maybe Trans Travel) or most planetary/in-system milita/defence force - so there is no real alternative there...
 
...as far as choices in frontier wide defence, it's either SpaceFleet or a rather politically 'stand offish' MegaCorp that has more interest in projects beyond frontier space than inside.
...and again it seems that only the law of a polite armed society actually keeps things civil enough in the bulk of the frontier, for SpaceFleet and StarLaw to focus on only the worst problems and hot-spots with what little they have... which is still not so much that they can force compliance with their legal claims of chartered purpose, over the desires of local sovereignties to police, protect, and govern themselves - or jump land claims in every system on that ground either.

A particular system government (let's look at Laco as one that might do this) could stall for giving an official land-claim for SpaceFleet's use for years, decades even, given the over all political climate and the lack of real force or political backing... thus Laco has no SpaceFleet base of any appreciable size in system... and may never get one... real world politics result in similar occurrences, some members may be, but the frontier is not a Fuedal organization, or even a Representative Democracy, at the top levels, it is a Federal Hegemony a Commonwealth Alliance and a Corporate Confederation, thus not even a real governmental body of specific power... and cannot just 'claim-land for your own good' from wherever it pleases, just to allow SpaceFleet room to play with it's toys, or StarLaw to breath down your neck.

I consider this a fair view of a lesser extreme, again this isn't to suggest irrelevance, I did not put them out completely, just giving a diffrent angle on the picture than what occasionally seems to be an attitude of "it's SpaceFleet, they are the good guys, they can do or have whatever they want." and the tendency to place them everywhere there is a citizen.


Oh, and the devil thanks you for your sympathies... XD
Oh humans!! Innocent We discover a galactic community filled with multiple species of aliens, and the first thing we think about is "how can we have sex with them?".
~ anymoose, somewhere on the net...

so...
if you square a square it becomes a cube...
if you square a cube does it become an octoid?

jedion357's picture
jedion357
December 11, 2011 - 7:26am
The following analysis speaks to this issue:

Delmar Watkins on the list serv wrote:

Subspace message from Delmar Watkins :

Pierre brought up a good point about how people view the federation government. I think there is a RADICAL change from AD and KH to Zeb's. WHile the government structure remained basically the same, I think the frontier economy grew a lot more grim and gritty.

In AD PanGal was basically a positive force in the froniter. It provided goods, gave everyone a standard trade language, and wasn't seen as a malificent monopoly.

In KH the idea shifted and now PanGal had competition and we saw more about pirates, claim jumpers, and the overall 'dirty' side of the economy. Not to mention that the adventures also added grit to the frontier: Dramune Run, when you analyze it, is actually a pretty grim picture of the Frontier.

Zebulon's guide is almost cyber-punk in feel. Greedy corporations conrolling huge economies, personal computers that plug you into information networks (i.e. bodycomps), cults and organization based on fear, fashion industries gone amok, etc. etc. Maybe more like THE FIFTH ELEMENT than NEUROMANCER, but still kinda dirty yet stylish.

Now, how do I see the governments working within this strucutre? Much like colonial England or France, actually. Laisse Fair. Just leave everything the heck alone unless its fixed. Sure, there is a minute military-industial complex with the UPF and (possibly) Landfleet, but they don't seem to get into planetary or Megacorp poltics unless there is a clear and present danger.

Or, the government is similar to the old West: so weak that might makes right (or, in the frontier, Rich makes Right). Sure, you have StarLaw swaggering about on the planets and 'stations, but when the magacorp troops outnumber Starlaw troops, who is to stop them? ("Sheriff, I'm callin' you out").

I don't see this as being a BAD thing in a sense for the frontier. It would seem to me that no one WANTS a central government, just a cetnral defense organization. There really isn't even a mention that I know of about a United Nations (diplomatically). I mean, other than UPF, which concentrates mostly on defense and Star Law Rangers. It is not as organized as our UN or even the old League of Nations (and that is truly a sad state of affairs).

So it would seem to me that the frontier is pretty much as its name suggests: a Frontier, with a FEDERATION as its loose government...
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

thespiritcoyote's picture
thespiritcoyote
December 11, 2011 - 8:38am
Well, that seems to be about the same conclusion as I proposed, just seen from a different vantage point.

I agree that by the time Zeb's came out 'The Movement' started by Gibson and Gang was in full tilt on the consciousness of geekdom... but I still abide by the older visuals of the PGC as an alternate to the cut-thought corporate masses of the rest of the Frontier... I do like my rocket-punk, but the sector is big enough to abide shiny happy rocket-prep shopping-malls... and dusty dirt covered frontier cattle-beings and xeno-bandits... and everything in between.

and as far as the FEDERATION moniker, it's just a name of an ideal... and social unifications under mutual accords have rarely (if ever) lived up to their purported ideals.
Oh humans!! Innocent We discover a galactic community filled with multiple species of aliens, and the first thing we think about is "how can we have sex with them?".
~ anymoose, somewhere on the net...

so...
if you square a square it becomes a cube...
if you square a cube does it become an octoid?

jedion357's picture
jedion357
January 11, 2012 - 8:38am
To sum up the UPF is not a true central government, its a weak confederation. It does perform some interplanetary regulation: Star Law tracking criminals, regulating import and export of flora and fauna after the blue plague, etc. It will only get involved in the internal politics of a planet in an extreme situatulion and after much delay and dithering (witness the 10 year Laco war). At best it will observe and step in if conflict gets to out of hand in space, however if out gunned by a corporate fleet it will most likely attempt diplomacy while calling for back up and someone with an admiral's braid to make the call. There are presidents for involvement: 1st common muster, and some of the Dramune Wars, but equally presidents for non involvement: some of the Dramune Wars and Corporate Wars.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!