Enterprise vs. Galactica: Who Would Win?

Published 6 years ago by , Updated February 26th, 2013 at 7:06 am,

galactica vs enterprise01 p Enterprise vs. Galactica: Who Would Win?

Have you ever wondered how cool it would be for some of your favorite shows to mix characters across the different networks or franchises?

Way back in the day (WAY back) I always wanted to see Airwolf, Blue Thunder and K.I.T.T. bring it to the bad guys in the same show.  Yet whenever a superhero crossover ever happened in the comics, they always seemed to duke it out between themselves first.  And this is what I thought of when I saw an inspired idea over on DVICE where they decided to match the technologies of the original U.S.S. Enterprise NCC-1701 up against the Battlestar Galactica in a pitched and heated battle.

Well, a theorized battle, anyway.

However I think the folks over at DVICE might be a little biased.  According to them, the Battlestar would come out on top against the Heavy Cruiser.  I think they aren’t being fair.  A Colonial Battlestar against a Federation Cruiser?  I would pitch a Federation Dreadnought against the Battlestar, but that’s just me.

As it is, I’ll work within the framework of what DVICE started from, but still, from my side of things, I think the outcome would be a bit different.  I’ll touch on the same points they did and we’ll see where it takes us!

Phasers vs. Kinetic Energy Turrets:  DVICE gave the edge to the phaser (Phased Energy Rectification Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation) because it could cut through unshielded ships.  I agree with that so the first point goes to the Federation.
Enterprise: 1, Galactica: 0.

Photon Torpedoes vs Nukes.  The argument is that the Enterprise couldn’t take a nuke hit while the Galactica could take a photon torpedo hit.  This one goes to Galactica on DVICE, but then they don’t exactly go into what kind of punch a Photon torpedo can do.  Let me.

According to some estimations, a Photon torpedo can pack a 64 megaton punch.  According to the Galactica Wiki, Galactica Nukes yield 5 to 150 Kilotons, depending on what is dialed in.

150 kilotons = 625 Joules, and 64 Megatons = ~269 Joules.  So the hitting power does go to the Galactica.
Enterprise: 1, Galactica: 1.

Sensors vs Dradis:  For some reason, DVICE gave this one to the Dradis on Galactica.  Are they kidding?  I have to digress here and give the edge to the Enterprise.  The Federation sensors can sense when a mouse farts!  The Dradis seems to only see ships.  Have I missed something.  If not, I’m changing their score and giving this tech edge to the Enterprise.
Enterprise: 2, Galactica: 1.

Shuttlecraft vs Vipers:  Is this even a comparison?  This goes to the Galactica with their fully armed Vipers versus the original series shuttlecraft.
Enterprise: 2, Galactica: 2.

Impulse engines and Warp Drives vs Ion Engines and FTL drives:  They argue that the Enterprise is more agile on impulse and warp drives.  I tend to agree that the smaller Enterprise can dance all around the Galactica.  The Enterprise has varying degrees of Warp speed, while the Galactica is a go / no-go, one speed ship when it comes to light speed travel. But the Galactica’s FTL drives are pretty cool as far as popping in and out of places, including popping out of planet atmospheres during free-fall.  (Was that not cool when the Galactica did that free-fall over New Caprica?) But it takes a lot of calculations for the Galactica to pop around and time for the FTL to spin up.  I think with all the flitting around the Enterprise can do compared to the Galactica, I’ll agree and give the edge to the Enterprise.
Enterprise: 3, Galactica: 2.

Transporters vs Raptors;  Is this even a fair comparison?  Enterprise, hands down.  They can just beam boarding parties on the Galactica.  Heck, they can beam the crews out of the Raptors!  In Star Fleet Battles (a board game I played) boarding parties were one of my best tricks once shields were down.
Enterprise: 4, Galactica: 2.

Shields vs Point-Defense Cannons:  As far as taking a beating, the Galactica took a nuke hit!  The PDC’s can dish out serious suppressive fire while the ship can absorb whatever gets through.  The Enterprise takes a shield hit or two and panels spark and people fly!  Technically, regardless of the flying bridge crew, I’d think the Enterprise has the edge, though DVICE gave this one to the Galactica.  Can PDC’s stop a Phaser?  I don’t think so.  The Enterprise can stand off and fire at will.
Enterprise: 5, Galactica: 2.

So somehow, in the end DVICE gave this comparison to the Galactica.   I want to go into a little reasoning on some things.

They didn’t consider sizes of the two ships though engine comparisons and the weight they push around was touched on:
The Enterprise:  Length: 947 feet; Overall Beam(width): 417 feet
The Galactica:  Length: 4640 feet; Overall Beam(width): 1821 feet

enterprise over galactica Enterprise vs. Galactica: Who Would Win?

Being big is great, but sheesh.  Enterprise?  What Enterprise?  You mean that spot on the paint?  Ramming speed Galactica!  But the small ship would probably be able to dance around the big boy.  This is the classic argument of light sword, many hits; heavy sword, one good hit.  These size comparisons sure make it seem like the Galactica might be able to dust the little guy but technology always wins out gang.

enterprise d over galactica Enterprise vs. Galactica: Who Would Win?

Of course this whole comparison thing pits the Galactica up against the NCC-1701.  This wouldn’t even be a question if they were looking at the 1701-D Galaxy Class from Star Trek: The Next Generation.  On the D, the shuttle craft had phasers and photons, didn’t they?  On Voyager, Janeway’s shuttle was armed to the teeth.  Or how much more punch would a Federation Dreadnought have?

But why would DVICE weigh their scales the way they did?  DVICE is part of the network with the Sci Fi Wire and the Sci-Fi Channel…  so ya gotta take this comparison with a grain of salt and have fun with it.  FUN, I say.

In the aspect of fun, let’s look at a few other things:

Society:  If we start looking at some of the intricacies, Starfleet personnel have a rather organized society.  The Galactica fleet really have their heads frakked up right now because their destined goal of humanity’s salvation, Earth, was a wasteland.  Oops.  They’d probably just give up!

battlestar galactica girls Enterprise vs. Galactica: Who Would Win?Captain Kirk Vs Admiral Adama:  Kirk would have Spock baffle Adama with calculations of probabilities of their outcome while Kirk would end up making out with No. 6, or Sharon or whatever warm blooded woman on the Galactica he could snag and go about his day.  Meanwhile, Adama might get Athena to plug into the Enterprise and send it to the “edge of the galaxy”… again.

The fun of it all:  In the end, these kinds of comparisons are for fun and could endlessly go on as we think of other shows we could pit against each other.  Rather than pitting all of Star Trek against Battlestar Galactica, or against Babylon 5, or what ever franchise we like, I say we stack all the good guys from all the shows on one side, give The Hulk a space suit and see how that works out for everyone!

Speaking of cross-overs, I remember a comic book where the classic Enterprise encountered who I think was a member of Marvel’s Kree race.  The panels were fun to go through.  Sulu tells Kirk that sensors are picking up a man outside the ship.  Kirk confusedly asks what he’s doing.  Sulu says he looks like he’s going to punch the ship.  Suddenly the bridge staff go flying when the Kree decks the ship.  I loved that scene but I just don’t have the time to dig through my garage sized collection of comics to verify it was the Kree.  If anyone can help me remember, that would be cool.

Basically, in the end, I say we line up all the good guys vs all the bad guys from the different sci-fi shows and have a massive crossover.  That would really mess with all the legal teams!

Are there any team-ups, or face-offs you’d like to see?  Let us know.

Sources:  DVICE, Stardestroyer.net, Sideview images: ship schemantics.netst-minutia.com, wolf’s shipyard; ex astris scientia; Image (almost to scale) overlays by Bruce Simmons

Get our free email alerts on the topics and author of this article:


Post a Comment

GravatarWant to change your avatar?
Go to Gravatar.com and upload your own (we'll wait)!

 Rules: No profanity or personal attacks.
 Use a valid email address or risk being banned from commenting.

If your comment doesn't show up immediately, it may have been flagged for moderation. Please try refreshing the page first, then drop us a note and we'll retrieve it. Keep in mind that we do not allow external links in the comments.

  1. How do you believe 150kt is more than 64mt???? 1mt = 1000kt

  2. On the note of technology, projectile weapons aren’t that much use in Trek-tech engagements… Navigational deflectors alone would handle lighter rounds, possibly even the crapstorm of a Battlestars main batteries. But it’s also a tossup in terms of what energy weapons could actually DO to said class of ships… If nothing else, thick armor and heavily braced hulls make for an excellent damage sponge. By dint of sheer size and mass, a Battlestar might well be able to suck up phaser fire and keep right on coming, damage or no, until the smaller ship hits something vital. Torpedoes are another matter…

    In the end, Federation ships aren’t primarily warships, so they’re not built as such. Battlestars are the polar opposite, designed not only as carriers, but as warships intended to engage in close, brutal, heavy combat. Of course, tech will make a big difference, and the distinction may well prove moot.

    • Senanthes,

      On the note of technology, projectile weapons aren’t that much use in Trek-tech engagements…

      Trek tech needs an enema, seriously. Or at least an enemy that is seriously allowed to be as giggly ‘superific’ as they are.

      Firing megaton class weapons from WVR (Within Visual Range, aka ‘dogfighting’ distances) which are never the less slow enough moving to be able to be shot down, dodged or whatever is just…REM’d.

      Navigational deflectors alone would handle lighter rounds, possibly even the crapstorm of a Battlestars main batteries.

      Ever hear of BFR’s? From _The Lost Fleet_ series by Jack Campbell. Take a slug of whatever (they can be made from local system resources using factory ships so it can be base iron) and zap it up to some fraction (10-15%) of lightspeed using an EML.

      Anything you hit has a multihundred megaton, planetary crust cracking, yield. Of course, they are not exactly agile in terms of guidance and tracking capabilities, tending to follow more or less straight lines. But the boom is worth it because the resource is, essentially, free.

      The point being, that it’s the energy of speed which makes the mass convert to high yields and it is the onset rate of the speed which makes it hard to intercept lots’n’lots of BFRs.

      But it’s also a tossup in terms of what energy weapons could actually DO to said class of ships… If nothing else, thick armor and heavily braced hulls make for an excellent damage sponge.

      TOS Enterprise, with her phasers alone, could slag a continent (the psychiatric prison episode). If you can go through a hundred miles of atmosphere and still push enough heat that a planetary body could not keep from going molten across continental areas, no starship hull without active shielding that is self-renewing, is going to stand a chance.

      By dint of sheer size and mass, a Battlestar might well be able to suck up phaser fire and keep right on coming, damage or no, until the smaller ship hits something vital. Torpedoes are another matter…

      ‘And then, for the rest of the war, the Tirpitz sat, out of action with battle damage, doing all of nothing but acting as a practice target for the RAF…’

      After a decade long build process involving hundreds of thousands of tons of steel going dirt to orbit, one would hope that there were better solutions than this. Specifically, the notion of the CARRIER is one whereby you trade total numbers of delivered shots for range over the horizon by which a smaller number of those shots, delivered by sacrificially replaceable fighters (10 tons, 2 weeks production interval), no longer has to score a lot of hits to get the kill because they are delivered with precision, at much shorter range (a modern aircraft bomb in the Mk.84 class is roughly the same weight class as a Mark 13 high capacity shell fired from a Mk.7, 16″, naval rifle so deliverable damage comes down to miss-distances since a few such hits will disable even a battleship…)

      In the end, Federation ships aren’t primarily warships, so they’re not built as such.

      Back to Trek idiot-tech. The entire ‘three paper towel tubes and a dinner plate’ hull design of the heavy cruisers is essentially about pushing the Bussard scoops out past the ‘protective envelope’ of the warp field. But guess what happens when you grab even a single atom of interstellar hydrogen while moving at relativistic, let alone superluminal speeds?

      Biggest. Boom. Ever.

      So it’s not like the entire configuration of Federation design is particularly practical, as a sphere or smooth ovoid containing the largest possible concentration of internal systems/payload volume…

      Battlestars are the polar opposite, designed not only as carriers, but as warships intended to engage in close, brutal, heavy combat. Of course, tech will make a big difference, and the distinction may well prove moot.

      And as I have said, many times before, if you have radio nucleide access (and Uranium 238 is actually about 7th on the common mineral list, IIRR) from planets on multiple worlds in multiple star systems, the notion that you would be playing pew-pew games with CIWS and point defense fighters is ridiculous. All those gun turrets need targeting apertures. Which will universally go dark under nuke flash. All those slow-mo spin-to-turn-and-retroburn Vipers will never be able to get out of the way of even a 5KT let alone 150KT wardet.

      And the sheer /weight/ as mass of the vehicle is going to burden the Galactica with inertial forces of it’s own (slower to go fast, slower to slow down) which will make it highly unwieldy and thus unlikely to be effective in combat _with nuclear weapons_ as the 100-200-300 shots per salvo needed to penetrate to within a few thousand meters of the hull.

      Can you make such a hull ‘immune’ to outside radiation? I suppose, though you would certainly not want to spend a lot of time transiting the outer regions as you transited with a fighter or shuttle to another location.

      But the propagative thickness of your anti radiation armor would again, be better achieved with a simple round or teardrop shaped hull envelope. Not a something with relatively thin ‘arms’ connecting hangar pods to the main vessel.

      Strip the Galactica of it’s Red Baron pew-pew fighters by blowing off the hangar pods or making them inaccessible by too thinly plated access arms and suddenly you have a big “So what are they there for?” construction and cost complexity issue.

      Cattlecar Gynactica was an artifact of a society that has convinced itself that atomic warfare in spaaaaaaace is going to be somehow peacenik restricted rather than a preferred mode of combat, just on the basis of the damage done by nuclear weapons.

      Throw in BFR weapons and any vessel which was as un-agile as the Galactica is in terms of changing velocity vectors would absorb hundreds of megatons if not gigatons of equivalent energy yield as the The Rock went from 27,900 MILES per second to zero within half the hull length and in the process converted itself and the entire front end of the ship to ultrahigh energy (supernova equivalent) plasma.

      Essentially, this means the Galactica can be a hyper-agile (10-20 miles per second worth of lateral diversion capabilities) ‘evader’ of a direct combat vessel. Or it can be a slug of a ‘tender’ for vessels which are, anything up to cluster’s worth of distance from the fight (can’t kill what doesn’t take part in the fight…).

      But it is highly unlikely it would be both.

      Not only is the value vestment vs. coverage deployment and loss exchange rate attritional metrics of the ship going to indicate ‘better fewer, smaller, mission dedicated’ vessels from an economic perspective. But the simple design optimizations of the two mission roles (how the ship was fought) would also argue against it.

      The only reason for Galactica to be that big would be if the technology of the period allowed it to venture far (years) from friendly logistical support and required it to carry everything it needed to generate it’s own repair and restock. Which is possible but unlikely, given that wars tend to happen over resources which are close enough to each side to be worth competing for.

  3. Error already pointed out by Bill but one Photon = ~426 nukes @ full (150) yield.

    Not sure if they’d get through the kinetic defences, but if even one photon landed I think the results would be somewhat influential to the outcome of the battle.

  4. You used stardestroyer.net to get any information about star trek and ignored the star trek wiki? Stardestroyer.net is the most negatively biased against star trek you could find! I’ll give you a little info for free about the torpedoes in star trek, though. They are variable yield. Their destructive force ranges from a fireworks display to your figure of 64 megatons to a whopping 690 gigatons. Plus, a typical Federation ship has much more than just the five nukes Galactica has. In addition to that, the shields on the original enterprise are stated to be able to tank 250 torpedo hits. There is no comparison. Do better research next time instead of just finding one fanboy source and going with it.

  5. Actually it was Gladiator of the Shi Ar empire that punched the enterprise. Kirk- “did that man just punch my ship?”

  6. Yeah your data is a bit off. First of as Bill pointed out MT means megatons and KT means kilotons. A mega is a thousand times more than a kilo. Secondly I don’t know which enterprise you are comparing the Galactica to but the Entwerpise D in your picture is 642.5 meters long which is over 2100 feet long. Not the mere 947 feet you gave it. In the original series the oringal enterprise took a nuke hit during a fight and not only withstood the hit, but won the fight. The Enterprise D that you showed a picture was a much larger and tougher ship. The Original Galactica used lasers as their main batteries, Laser weapons weren’t even strong enough to pierice enterprises navigation shields let alone its main deflector array. Your data is flawed. The Galactica would not be able to provide any meaningful resistance in a fight with the Enterprise.

  7. ok but these comparrrisons are with the reimagined galactica, how would the enterprise fare against the “classic” galactica from the original series?

  8. 64 megatons is 50 times the power of 150 kt. You have the photon torpedo / nuke power mixed up. No contest.