Author Topic: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?  (Read 4015 times)

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A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
So, I just finished the FS2 campaign for about the millionth time and I'm finally beginning to see the destruction of the Capella star in a different way than suggested by Admiral Petrarch and I'd like to discuss it a bit (I also have some questions to ponder). Is there a thread that is discussing or has discussed the destruction of the Capella star? Or would this be the first one?
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Offline Black Wolf

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
The game has been out for more than 15 years. The ending has been discussed... once or twice. :p

But tell us what you're thinking - there's not an ongoing thread that I'm aware of, and new perspectives are cool.
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Offline Luis Dias

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
"once or twice"

Roflmao.

Have you played BP? That has some discussions over the Capella affair.

I have put some words into this as well.

  Here

 
Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
The game has been out for more than 15 years. The ending has been discussed... once or twice. :p

But tell us what you're thinking - there's not an ongoing thread that I'm aware of, and new perspectives are cool.

I'm not asking if this has been discussed before, I'm asking if there's a dedicated thread on this topic.

Anyway, the following thought crossed my mind: what if they destroyed the Capella star simply to help end the war so that they could finally go back to their lives that we invaded (from their perspective)?

I do wonder though why some of the Sathanas Juggernauts didn't jump out after they made the Capella star go supernova. I also wonder why they let many of the Shivans who were still engaged in battle get killed by the supernova; why didn't they tell them to jump out? Were these necessary sacrifices just to end the battle once and for all?

"once or twice"

Roflmao.

Have you played BP? That has some discussions over the Capella affair.

I have put some words into this as well.

  Here

I remember seeing your thread a long time ago, but I don't remember really going through it very thoroughly. I just might now that I'm thinking about this.

Anyway, I haven't played anything other than the retail campaigns of FS1 and 2 yet. For some reason, I just haven't become interested in the others. I do have them though.
Why do you say "as" instead of "because"?

 

Offline General Battuta

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
 :v:'s general theory seems to have been that the Shivans were von Neumann machines whose life cycle or programming valued supernova remnants. So they went around blowing up suns to create nebulae.

I would be happy to use this explanation in a campaign, I think it's neatly minimalistic and fits a lot of the aesthetic of the FreeSpace universe. I'm not personally satisfied with it, since I don't think it explains enough of the particularities of the FreeSpace 2 story, and it doesn't really evoke the existential terror of the Shivans.

 
Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
:v:'s general theory seems to have been that the Shivans were von Neumann machines whose life cycle or programming valued supernova remnants. So they went around blowing up suns to create nebulae.

I would be happy to use this explanation in a campaign, I think it's neatly minimalistic and fits a lot of the aesthetic of the FreeSpace universe. I'm not personally satisfied with it, since I don't think it explains enough of the particularities of the FreeSpace 2 story, and it doesn't really evoke the existential terror of the Shivans.

In light of seeing :v:'s theory here, I'd say that for me, this makes them even more terrifying because machines cannot be reasoned with and you cannot become a machine's friend. When a machine is trying to accomplish a task that it has been programmed to accomplish, it will not stop until that task is complete. When it can keep creating more and more machines in order to continue trying to complete its task, the sheer terror skyrockets.

I think now I understand why they use binary (I've been wondering ever since first hearing, "Binary systems give me the creeps"). I used to think that they were insects of some kind due to the design of all their craft, but I guess I was wrong. That's some scary you-know-what.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2015, 09:59:39 am by TwoCables »
Why do you say "as" instead of "because"?

 
Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
Binary systems give me the creeps...

... Ooooh, that is an excellent point TwoCables, excellent spot.

 
Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
Binary systems give me the creeps...

... Ooooh, that is an excellent point TwoCables, excellent spot.

Thank you. :)

(and thank you for reminding me that he says "binary systems")
Why do you say "as" instead of "because"?

 

Offline General Battuta

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
In light of seeing :v:'s theory here, I'd say that for me, this makes them even more terrifying because machines cannot be reasoned with and you cannot become a machine's friend. When a machine is trying to accomplish a task that it has been programmed to accomplish, it will not stop until that task is complete. When it can keep creating more and more machines in order to continue trying to complete its task, the sheer terror skyrockets.

I think now I understand why they use binary (I've been wondering ever since first hearing, "Binary systems give me the creeps"). I used to think that they were insects of some kind due to the design of all their craft, but I guess I was wrong. That's some scary you-know-what.

This has been explored so much in fiction over the past century that I think it's played out. Alastair Reynolds did a fine job with it, Greg Benford pushed the scale of the story about as far as it'll go, and the Saberhagen berserkers lost all their shine a long time ago. I'm fine with it, but I'd prefer to find a more disturbing and total explanation (one that explains more of the events of FS2's plot).

Hilariously enough, Capella's actually a quaternary of two binaries in real life, but I don't think V carried that over into the game.

 
Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
I have my own theory that i used in my fan-fiction series. Even it is only a mix of different theories out there.

I disagree with Admiral Petrarch about the way to home. I actually like the "The Great Preservers"-Theory Alpha 1 had in The Great War much more.

I came to the conclusion, that the Shivans are not interested in extinction of races. We know that the Ancients Empire spans multiple galaxies and crushed intelligent beings without a hitch.
The story in FreeSpace: The Great War we heard in the Ancients monologues was not the story of the whole race, like it was more a story of a nation within this gigantic empire.
Remember that, if the Shivans had not destroyed the Ancients presence in our known-space, never the Humans nor the Vasudans were able to be a spacefaring-race.

I think the Shivans are more interested that races can be evolve into intelligent spacefaring beings. They protected our evolution with the destruction of the Altair-Ancients.

The Shivans appear in the Great War in a time were it seems that the GTA were able to crush the Vasudans. Much more if you think, that the GTA has a Hades in reserve.
Their appearance protected both races to be extinct or enslave each other. They secured the evolution.
Sure, they wanted to destroy Vasuda Prime and Earth, but both races would be survive such an attack and they had no time to crush the other race after the homeworlds are gone. But it was the only way for the Shivans to secure this kind of cooperation between to races. If they had only destroyed Vasuda and have disappeared after that, maybe the humans would have use this situation to "win" the war against the vasudans finally.


And now FreeSpace 2. I think, that the Ancient-Shivan War is still ongoing. Across several galaxies. The Shivans try to stop the Ancients to crush lower beings that have the potential to be intelligent ones.
I think the Shivans want to prevent, that the GTVA tap into this unimaginable big battlefield, in which they would possible get the attention of the Ancients, which do not tolerate other powers next his own.
The Capella Supernova have different meanings.
First of all, it shows impressively the scale of power that is involved in this war. So it is also a clear warning sign, not to be curious about what lies in the unknown regions of space and that you have to need much much more preparations to be ready for this and to participate in the conflict, which is perhaps unavoidable in the distant future.
The second useful thing about this supernova was not only the warning sign, but also the possibility to create a new energy source for their war industry. Or they need this supernova remnants for a weapon or whatever.
Shivan here, Shivan there, Shivan everywhere.

My english isn't very well, so sorry for a few mistakes.

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Offline NGTM-1R

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
This has been explored so much in fiction over the past century that I think it's played out. Alastair Reynolds did a fine job with it, Greg Benford pushed the scale of the story about as far as it'll go, and the Saberhagen berserkers lost all their shine a long time ago. I'm fine with it, but I'd prefer to find a more disturbing and total explanation (one that explains more of the events of FS2's plot).

I'm not sure you can play out an idea that basic. There are endless variations upon cast and details to be made. Mass Effect was more than willing to drop the Saberhagen references and it didn't particularly suffer for that choice. (Others, but not that one.)

Played-out requires a more specific plot formula than that.
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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
IMO, at least, the thing is that you need a motivation, or else the reaction to the big reveal will be "...okay, and?" If the Shivans are just von Neumann machines created by someone to expand their empire, and then they went wrong or something...there's just nothing there. No real malevolence, for one thing, so they fall a bit flat as villains. But beyond that...there's just no meat to the explanation. If you start with that, as your premise, it could work, but not if you build up a mystery around it first. The Shivans need to be more than rogue machines.

 

Offline jr2

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
Cylons?

 

Offline NGTM-1R

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
No real malevolence, for one thing, so they fall a bit flat as villains.

Yeah, go watch some Godzilla movies, I'll wait.

The Shivans have never been presented as villains as such; they're opponents, obstacles, but not villains. They've never been so personalized to the player in the canon. Vasuda Prime was destroyed, and not Earth, for a reason.

Conversely BP1 actually did personalize their actions with the deaths of Bei's family members precisely because it wanted to open the door to a radically different take on the Shivans from the way canon seemed to go.
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Offline General Battuta

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
The central power of Shivan narrative presence is that they are corrosive to human symbolic systems. Everyone in the story attempts to make sense of them, from the Hammer of Light's religious acceptance to the FS2's intro of 'they really stole our mojo, but now we got it back and we built our own Lucifer which we will use to defend the Vasudans from the Terrans in an echo of the 14 Year War'.

But encounters with the Shivans always destroy the structures that we've built to explain them.

 
Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
No real malevolence, for one thing, so they fall a bit flat as villains.

Yeah, go watch some Godzilla movies, I'll wait.

The Shivans have never been presented as villains as such; they're opponents, obstacles, but not villains. They've never been so personalized to the player in the canon. Vasuda Prime was destroyed, and not Earth, for a reason.

Conversely BP1 actually did personalize their actions with the deaths of Bei's family members precisely because it wanted to open the door to a radically different take on the Shivans from the way canon seemed to go.

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing; I've never had the impression that the Shivans are being presented as villains. They're just evil aliens, from our perspective - because they seem to want nothing else but to kill every last human and Vasudan. From the Shivans' perspective, well, who knows? Do they even HAVE a perspective? Are they cold machines ("Binary systems give me the creeps")? Or are they just like the alien in the Alien movie series?

Why do you say "as" instead of "because"?

 

Offline AdmiralRalwood

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
They're just evil aliens, from our perspective - because they seem to want nothing else but to kill every last human and Vasudan.
If they wanted nothing else but to kill every last human and Vasudan, FS2 would have had a very different ending.
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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
No real malevolence, for one thing, so they fall a bit flat as villains.

Yeah, go watch some Godzilla movies, I'll wait.

The Shivans have never been presented as villains as such; they're opponents, obstacles, but not villains. They've never been so personalized to the player in the canon. Vasuda Prime was destroyed, and not Earth, for a reason.

Conversely BP1 actually did personalize their actions with the deaths of Bei's family members precisely because it wanted to open the door to a radically different take on the Shivans from the way canon seemed to go.

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing; I've never had the impression that the Shivans are being presented as villains. They're just evil aliens, from our perspective - because they seem to want nothing else but to kill every last human and Vasudan. From the Shivans' perspective, well, who knows? Do they even HAVE a perspective? Are they cold machines ("Binary systems give me the creeps")? Or are they just like the alien in the Alien movie series?

Yeah, that's fair. I think my main point was sort of an either-or thing: they need to either be malevolent and thus compelling as villains, or have some big secret to them. Ideally, the latter. If neither is true, then they're just kind of there.

 
Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
They're just evil aliens, from our perspective - because they seem to want nothing else but to kill every last human and Vasudan.
If they wanted nothing else but to kill every last human and Vasudan, FS2 would have had a very different ending.

You misunderstood. I was talking as though this is real life. From the perspective of someone living in the world of FreeSpace 2, the humans seem to think that the Shivans are just evil aliens who only want to kill everyone. That doesn't make it true. I'm making an observation.
Why do you say "as" instead of "because"?

 

Offline General Battuta

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Re: A thread discussing the destruction of the Capella star?
If that were true there wouldn't be an entire subplot in FS2 about the GTVI aiding and abetting Bosch so that he can try to contact the Shivans.