A few lore questions about jumpgates

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mcz117chief
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A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by mcz117chief » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 17:51

1) Are jumpgates canonically indestructible or can they be re-built? I am asking this because I find it weird that there are any jumpgates left in the universe. You would have wars, accidents, terrorists, etc. that would sooner or later destroy them if possible. Just imagine if the only way to reach the United States would be through a magical portal, that portal would be the most tempting target for terrorism on the planet, much more than anything else in the world by far.

2) What are the distance one travels when entering a jumgate? In the intro to Terran Conflict it says that the Xenon devastated entire galaxies. So is the jumpgate network in the game just one galaxy or are you being sent across multiple galaxies and possibly even half way across the universe?

Those are the ones I keep thinking about when I play the game, any possible answers to these questions?

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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by radcapricorn » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 18:54

1) Canonically, they're very much destructible. That's how Earth became isolated from the rest of the X-Universe in the first place, and how Argon came to be. You can also find remnants of destroyed gates in some sectors. The plot of X2 even had you travel to one of those.

2) Varies. The network is configurable, as witnessed directly via Reunion finale, the HUB, and the events after Albion Prelude. Same galaxy or not? Rebirth suggests that yes. I haven't read any books or some other in-depth lore though.

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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by Cycrow » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 19:01

radcapricorn wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 18:54
1) Canonically, they're very much destructible. That's how Earth became isolated from the rest of the X-Universe in the first place, and how Argon came to be. You can also find remnants of destroyed gates in some sectors. The plot of X2 even had you travel to one of those.
The one the terrans blew up was a terran built one, rather than a normal ancient jump gate, and the one in the X2 plot was the gate that it was originally connected to, so it was destroyed by the terran gate.

The only other gate that was destroyed in lore was the other terran gate, destroyed by the goners

mcz117chief
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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by mcz117chief » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 19:18

radcapricorn wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 18:54
1) Canonically, they're very much destructible. That's how Earth became isolated from the rest of the X-Universe in the first place, and how Argon came to be. You can also find remnants of destroyed gates in some sectors. The plot of X2 even had you travel to one of those.
So how about the second part of my question. How come there are any left if they are destructible. Can they be easily rebuilt/replaced?

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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by radcapricorn » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 20:33

Cycrow wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 19:01
The one the terrans blew up was a terran built one, rather than a normal ancient jump gate, and the one in the X2 plot was the gate that it was originally connected to, so it was destroyed by the terran gate.

The only other gate that was destroyed in lore was the other terran gate, destroyed by the goners
Yup, thanks for clarifying.
mcz117chief wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 19:18
So how about the second part of my question. How come there are any left if they are destructible. Can they be easily rebuilt/replaced?
As Cycrow pointed out, the destruction of an alien gate was due to backlash of the Terrans blowing up their own. And since no other race experimented with building their own gates all that much, the network is intact. Given that its creators have/had full power of reconfiguring it several times in the past, it's unlikely they'd allow wanton destruction anyway.
And they cannot be "easily" rebuilt, otherwise "The Dark" shortly after Ablion Prelude wouldn't be a big deal, nor would exploration of alternative technologies make much sense.

By the way, there's a timeline on a separate web resource, and also a downloadable encyclopedia on this site.

mcz117chief
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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by mcz117chief » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 20:58

radcapricorn wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 20:33
the network is intact.
How? Please read my first question in the OT fully.

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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by radcapricorn » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 21:04

Please read the very next sentence after the one you partially quoted :)

mcz117chief
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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by mcz117chief » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 21:28

radcapricorn wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 21:04
Please read the very next sentence after the one you partially quoted :)
It doesn't really answer my question. How would they prevent random accidents, acts of terrorism or desperate admirals trying to cut off the enemy's supply lines?

I understand that for gameplay purposes you need the net intact to provide optimal gaming experience, but a answer in the lore would be much appreciated. Maybe they reappear after being destroyed? Maybe even within minutes or seconds after being destroyed which would almost nullify the tactical advantaged gained by destroying them? Or maybe they are just indestructible (the laziest but easiest solution).

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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by radcapricorn » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 22:15

Them being indestructible wouldn't be true: they are, albeit not easily. How would Old Ones prevent wanton destruction of the gates? Reconfigure the network again, like they did numerous times, to cut off perpetrators for good. Let them wither away with their inactive gates on their cut off worlds.
Even if it were possible to just go in and blow them up, it's likely there'd be economical, political, criminal and other safeguards in place.

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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by X2-Illuminatus » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 22:23

The jumpgate network as we know it was built by an ancient race, known as the 'Ancients' (surprise). They are 'employing' a sentinent machine race called the 'Sohnen', which will repair broken jumpgates and may even build new ones. Provided that this is actually wanted by the Ancients.

As for destroying jumpgates as an act of terrorism or during war: First of all jumpgates are massive structures, which cannot be destroyed that easily. In the lore it usually takes a fleet of spaceships to destroy a single gate. Secondly, in the X-Universe jumpgates are the only reliable way of insterstellar travel, as every known race* discovered the jumpgates before actually having to develop an own interstellar drive. Thus destruction of a single gate (the connected gate will be disabled then as well) will have a huge effect on the inter-system travel, on economics and society. Even in war times it would be quite nonsensical to destroy such an important piece of infrastructure. Thirdly, no one except the Sohnen, which usually do not contact other races, and the Terrans actually know how to build jumpgates. Therefore, if a race owns a system with many gates they will try to keep them intact by reacting quickly and rather hostile to any attacks on the gates.

*Khaak are obviously an exception. But they are from a completely different part of the galaxy. Also we know that some Xenon/Terraformer at least experimented with a gateless jumpdrive.
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mcz117chief
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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by mcz117chief » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 22:51

X2-Illuminatus wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 22:23
As for destroying jumpgates as an act of terrorism or during war: First of all jumpgates are massive structures, which cannot be destroyed that easily.

People thought the same about many things before, like the Titanic, Twin Towers and others. Accidents do happen and I think a disabled battlecruiser ramming a jumpgate head on could do a massive damage to it or even destroy it completely, as well as a transport filled with explosives.
X2-Illuminatus wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 22:23
In the lore it usually takes a fleet of spaceships to destroy a single gate.
Ok, so they are very tough, but it is possible.
X2-Illuminatus wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 22:23
Secondly, in the X-Universe jumpgates are the only reliable way of insterstellar travel, as every known race* discovered the jumpgates before actually having to develop an own interstellar drive. Thus destruction of a single gate (the connected gate will be disabled then as well) will have a huge effect on the inter-system travel, on economics and society. Even in war times it would be quite nonsensical to destroy such an important piece of infrastructure.
There is a viable military tactic called Scorched Earth Policy (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scorched_earth) that has been employed many times in history with great effect. Ask yourself this: you are being chased by an unstoppable Xenon fleet and is at the door of your homeworld. You have no way of stopping it with your military alone and it is absolutely certain that you will be completely overrun and your civilisation annihilated or forced to live as outcasts. At that point your best bet is to just destroy the jumpgate, like the humans did during the 22nd century. A very similar situation happens in FreeSpace 2 where humans are forced to collapse a jump node otherwise their destruction is assured. There are situations where the destruction of a jump node is a viable tactic.

X2-Illuminatus wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 22:23
Thirdly, no one except the Sohnen, which usually do not contact other races, and the Terrans actually know how to build jumpgates. Therefore, if a race owns a system with many gates they will try to keep them intact by reacting quickly and rather hostile to any attacks on the gates.
If it is a hijacked transport or during a massive naval engagement all kinds of things can happen. The fact that all jumpgates still work is a literal miracle imo.

Just imagine it in real life sense. Imagine that flying is impossible on our planet (for speculative reasons) and every nation is an island. Now, every island has a bridge or two connecting another island and, for one reason or another, these bridges are impossible to build/repair. Do you honestly think that these bridges would survive thousands of years of human malice, conflicts and clumsiness?
radcapricorn wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 22:15
Them being indestructible wouldn't be true: they are, albeit not easily. How would Old Ones prevent wanton destruction of the gates? Reconfigure the network again, like they did numerous times, to cut off perpetrators for good. Let them wither away with their inactive gates on their cut off worlds.
Even if it were possible to just go in and blow them up, it's likely there'd be economical, political, criminal and other safeguards in place.
You can't condemn an entire civilisation because of actions of one crazy terrorists who decide to go out in a blaze of glory by ramming a transport full of explosives into a jumpgate. That is ridiculous.

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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by radcapricorn » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 23:13

That's exactly what you're proposing, as such a "terrorist attack" could be a sure way to condemn a civilization. That aside, you're exaggerating. There are hundreds of known gates. There's obviously even more, but those are inaccessible. To destroy all the known network, every other admiral, president, priest duke or CEO would have to be a terrorist or madman; or gigantic universe-wide alien invasions would have to happen several times per century.

A nuclear weapon was only offensively deployed twice in human history, and hopefully never will again. What makes you think that something as atrocious and devastating as destroying the only means of interstellar travel should be run-of-the-mill morning news?

As for accidents, we're yet to learn why the hell did the network shut down after X3AP anyway.

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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by mcz117chief » Tue, 18. Dec 18, 23:29

radcapricorn wrote:
Tue, 18. Dec 18, 23:13
That's exactly what you're proposing, as such a "terrorist attack" could be a sure way to condemn a civilization. That aside, you're exaggerating. There are hundreds of known gates. There's obviously even more, but those are inaccessible. To destroy all the known network, every other admiral, president, priest duke or CEO would have to be a terrorist or madman; or gigantic universe-wide alien invasions would have to happen several times per century.

A nuclear weapon was only offensively deployed twice in human history, and hopefully never will again. What makes you think that something as atrocious and devastating as destroying the only means of interstellar travel should be run-of-the-mill morning news?

As for accidents, we're yet to learn why the hell did the network shut down after X3AP anyway.
I don't even know what I am supposed to be proposing. I just said that there are crazy people or even highly motivated crazy people who are willing to kill themselves while doing maximum damage to their "enemy", which is what 9/11 was.

The fact that there are hundreds of gates would only make their destruction seem less important since you could say: "well, there are still many others so we can blow this one up to funnel the Xenon more easily." like collapsing a tunnel basically.

It is not just about destroying all of them but not even 1? Not a single jumpgate has been destroyed in a 1000 years? Sounds impossible to me.

If the allies had access to nuclear weapons in the 1940s do you think they would only use 2 of them like they did in the real world? Or how about Stalin or Hitler? Would they also refrain from using them? I can bet you anything that if nukes were developed sooner they would have been used a whole lot more. The fact that we improved the destructive capabilities of nuclear weapons while the size of our planet stayed constant is the primary reason why nuclear weapons haven't been used again (any form of nuclear war today would result in absolute devastation and a no-win scenario for everybody). Besides, some US generals actually proposed to use nuclear weapons during the Vietnam war (there were even some during the Korean war).

If you have a crazy-ass dictator who calls his end game "Götterdämmerung" and that "there will either be Germany ruling the world or no Germany at all" you can bet he would use his space ships to blow up anything of value including jump gates, space stations. He would probably bombard his own planet to make it unlivable and prevent the enemy from taking any valuable resources from it as per the Scorched Earth Policy.

Anyway, that is it from me today. Going to get some sleep. I will check back her maybe if I'll have some time at work or once I come home (5pm CET at the earliest).

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Re: A few lore questions about jumpgates

Post by Honved » Wed, 19. Dec 18, 18:53

There are at least 3 destroyed gates in TC, and many more if you jump into UFJD sectors. It clearly DOES happen, but rarely. We no longer have contact with those areas which have been cut off, and some have been forgotten or all-but forgotten (Albion). If the Sohnen can and do repair or build jumpgates, there's your answer: a few of the important ones that we know about MAY have been damaged or destroyed in the past, but were replaced.

The other thing is, if it takes a sizable fleet of capital ships to destroy a gate, your average terrorist isn't going to be able to do it, and the government of a major faction, faced with annihilation as the alternative, is likely to be the only body both capable of it and willing to consider it. A single renegade capital ship or small fleet is likely to be attacked by ALL factions if it makes a serious attempt at such destruction.

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