Starfighters: Superheroes in Space–pt II

Hi, everyone. It’s partially because of my mood and partially because it’s instructive to show superheroes by instead showing supervillains. The photos of these twin posts will feature the Exploiter, a pirate fighter recognizable by its long body reminiscent of the GDM Arrow upon which the design is based. It’s a dog fighter par excellence, though with the plasma torpedoes it carries, it scarcely needs to be. The frontal medium lasers are enough to deal with some less expert GDM pilots, and many EGM pilots, with their reliance on heavy armour, shields, and weapons. Indeed, if EGM had not learned to sent fighters costing 1 million credits per ship against the lighter dogfighting GDM arrows at 250,000 credits, the pirate guild’s Exploiter should have made the lesson clear. Skill first, then weapons and ship design.

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The Pirates’ Guild Exploiter is designed with a long prow which accommodates caydaryn cyrstals, the source of the machines cloaking machine, rendering the ship invisible to radar, sydar, and visual recognition. Aces abound among the Pirate guild, menacing both GDM and EGM equally. Their guided plasma torpedoes make even newbies on the stick a threat to all ships in the universe.

When you look at the ship, don’t you see a supervillain’s costume in body and the colour scheme of the armour? Dark grey, light grey, and dark blue make up the super machine that pirate pilots fly, making the pirates feared opponents beyond calculation. They allowed the two sides of GDM and EGM to fight it out while they perfected a model of their own, the Exploiter, great invisible enemy that can only be seen when it surfaces to use a weapon system for mere seconds. Look at the flesh-coloured face of the hooded pirate fighter. Is she not a supervillain in the same sense that Batman is a superhero? She’s flying a ship made to fight her enemies, and she’s gained the skills–not equal perhaps of the GDM pilots in pure aeronautics–but in the use of the abilities of her ship, offensive and defensive, is she not an equal to the heroes of the GDM, never mind the capitalist clods of the EGM.

 

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Look at the length of the ship’s chassis. And yet the ship is so narrow as to make weapon’s lock on her difficult, like the GDM Arrow, but more so. The long prow of the ship not only anchors the frontal guns but situates the green Caydarin crystals that power the ships invisibility matrix, hidden just under the dark grey plate between the dark grey and light grey armour cladding. Is the ship not, like the GDM Arrow, an economical expression of a star fighter, covered with slender armour everywhere it is needed, but otherwise, slim, long, and all that contributing to the ship’s manoeuverability under fire and difficulty to track?

Fighters like this one are not designed to bring back enemy fighters for salvage. Their plasma torpedoes leave too little of the enemy ship left. But a single plasma torpedo aimed at a capital ship’s engines would leave so little left of the propulsion system as to ground the ship in space until sufficient numbers of the Exploiter arrive to tow the capital ship home to a secret hidden pirate star base for use for spare parts, to create more Exploiters, or to simply serve as treasure ships outfitted to move wealth from one location to another.

But where was I? We were discussing superheroes, and I may have gotten lost reflecting on their mirror twins, the supervillains. Supervillains, if they are well-designed ones, always have a power that frustrates and confounds the hero’s own powers. I think the Exploiter has done that to the poor GDM pilots. We don’t worry about EGM (Explorer’s Guild Military) as much, because their values, though mired in legitimacies of capitalism taken to the level of space and transportation technology that exposes us to multiple worlds, doesn’t endear us to them, for they are only money hoarders, unlike the Great Democracy Military, which stands for freedom of all life to find room to prosper. The Exploiters look a little like the fighters from a very old seventies cartoon called Star Blazers.

Even as superheroes emerge first to fight low-level street crime, which spawns, as it always does, a nemesis with the perfect tools and personality to fight the superhero, so a mere starship (and its pilots) form the counter force to the heroes values. And why not? There isn’t room for everyone who wants to be a hero ace with GDM standing against the capitalist EGM? They don’t need every pilot they can get to handle EGM, because, at least in the first stage of conflict, the good guys generally win. That’s because when we think of the good of all, and not just self-aggrandizement, the good minds of the good side include the evil minds they are fighting. EGM isn’t much more than the street thugs that menace Daredevil or Spiderman. They are no lizard, or Kraven the Hunter.

The pirates are those who have been forgotten by both EGM and GDM and decided because of the neglect of both polities that they must seek an organization that takes care of those who are left out of the moral equation of pure capitalism (EGM) and pure opportunity and sharing (GDM). The survivors. The winners at all costs. The pirates.

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The Exploiter with it’s high communications fin sends messages across great gulfs of hyperspace to comrades.

So, I will conclude tonight’s post on superheroes and supervillains in space. I should note that as a Lego builder I have built the Exploiter at mini-fig scale, meaning that it is large enough to accommodate a Lego minifigure. I have a mini-fig scale of the GDM Arrow which I may share in future posts. Perhaps when I am in a more benevolent mood, I will highlight the GDM’s full size ship. For now, good night.

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