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The Borg

Written: 2000.06.13

Unlike the Federation, the Borg does possess personal shielding technology. However, it appears to be the polar opposite of Federation shielding technology- while we have seen that the Federation is capable of building personal particle-shields but not energy shields, we have seen that Borg drones have energy shields but not particle shields. This was evidenced in ST:FC when numerous Borg drones were killed by holographic 20th century machine-gun bullets, knives, and even hand-to-hand combat techniques.

(E1701 here) The drones had not adpted to kenetic weapons. Their ships can, therefore, logically, given the chance, so can the drones.

Hey, it's another leap in logic! So their ships can produce particle shields. Why does that mean their drones can also do it? Does he explain? No.

I wasn't aware that all characteristics of starships apply to every drone! Does this mean that Borg drones can achieve independent space flight, just like the cubes? Perhaps in the next movie we'll see drones flying through outer space, engaging Federation starships in combat, opening up transwarp conduits, etc. Then again, perhaps not. Star Trek's writing has been atrocious lately, but I doubt it will get that bad.


Physical contact with Borg drones is extremely dangerous; they inject combatants with nanotechnology devices which appear to take command of the victim's central nervous system and put the victim under Borg control very quickly- some evidence suggests the elapsed time is less than one minute. We don't know whether their nanoprobe injection tubules are capable of piercing stormtrooper armour, but obviously we feel that stormtroopers should be briefed on this possibility. Since they don't appear to employ any particle shielding and they use primitive "human wave" tactics, we recommend that blasters be discarded in favour of flechette launchers such as the Golan Arms FC-1 flechette launcher. Borg shield effectiveness against weapons like wrist rockets, flame-throwers, and sonic rifles is also unknown. However, all of those weapons are primarily matter-based weapons and will probably be effective. Another possibility is to exclusively use combat droids.

(Alyeska here) Borg nano tubles are so strong they can pierce any known substance and any forcefield under shuttle craft strength.

"Alyeska" obviously isn't too observant, and is obviously prone to incredibly reckless hasty generalizations. I wasn't aware that when a Federation crewman says "known substance", he's describing every substance known to every civilization in the universe! Here's a news flash for deluded Trekkies: stormtrooper armour is not a "known substance" to the Federation.

A borg drone nails an Enterprise crewman

Furthermore, the statement iself is useless. Dialogue must always be interpreted, and this particular piece of dialogue is meaningless. When the doctor said the Borg tubules could penetrate any known substance, did he bother to specify the maximum thickness of material they can pierce? Or should we imagine that the tubules can pierce a six foot thick wall? Should we imagine that the tubules can pierce neutronium or a piece of antimatter? He was obviously making reference to materials known to the Federation that are suitable for wearable body armour, given the context of the discussion. His statement was not meant to be anywhere near as all-inclusive as "Alyeska" seem to think.

Borg can beam through shields.

Yet another reckless hasty generalization. I wasn't aware that all of the shields in the universe are identical to Federation shields of a particular vintage (since they learned how to block them by the time of STFC).

Borg can learn information by assimilating a target and can learn ways to adapt to the enemy.

Hey, it's yet another reckless hasty generalization. They don't have equal capabilities to assimilate all technology, or equal capabilities to adapt to all enemies. They failed utterly in their attempts to assimilate Species 8472, and on a more mundane level, they couldn't even assimilate Data. Similarly, their ability to adapt to their enemies is hardly universal; they couldn't adapt to Species 8472, and in STFC, they may have "adapted" to phasers and photon torpedoes but it obviously didn't make them immune.

The borg also HAVE been shown to have KE shields. In the episode of Voyager where they acidently created a drone it was equiped with shields capable of deflecting other drones.

This is an outright lie. The 29th century Borg in "Drone" destroyed himself so that the Collective would be unable to assimilate his technology. Therefore, the Borg do not have any of his technology. Furthermore, while he is correct about the 29th century drone's ability to keep other drones from touching him, this hardly proves that his shields would have stopped the flechette launcher that I mentioned in my quoted argument! The ability to keep people from touching you isn't exactly awe-inspiring. A taser or a baseball bat will keep people from touching you too, but it won't stop a hail of flechettes.

While he was a product of future and present technology the shield itself was derived from information from Voyagers data banks.

This is another unsupported claim. The drone was created by an accidental assimilation of 29th century technology. What evidence does he provide that its shield technology came from Voyager's data banks instead of the 29th century portable emitter that was assimilated?

Further more borg do in fact have ranged weapons. In both TNG and Voyager when odds are against the borg disrupters will be used.

Ahh, another unsupported claim. Is this getting tiresome yet? No episode names. Not even an episode description. Just vague reference to Borg ranged weapons. He doesn't even attempt to describe what range we're talking about, or how effective these weapons are. Again, I try to be as open-minded as the next guy, but you have to provide something! You can't just make vague reference to "TNG and Voyager".

I once saw part of a Voyager episode in which 7 of 9 disabled several other drones with some sort of green blob that she shot at them, but there's no evidence that it was a legitimate energy weapon; it knocked the target drones unconscious but caused no physical damage. It might arguably have been a stun ray, but it might also have arguably been a specialized device to be used for shutting down damaged drones.

We also saw wrist-mounted weapons in "Descent", but not on Borg drones. They were on ex-Borg drones, specifically the private army that Lore had accumulated.


The Borg are not likely to intervene in our war with the Federation; in spite of vast empire-building aspirations attributed to them, they appear to be expanding at an extremely slow pace, and have made only a half-hearted attempt to assimilate the Federation.

(Alyeska here) The borg would see the Empire with its large navy and new (not advanced or better, only new to them) technology and determine it to be both a threat and way to get new technology and inforamation.

This "rebuttal" doesn't address the point made in my quoted argument, which is that the Borg have made only a half-hearted attempt to assimilate the Federation. If the reason is the sheer distance between Earth and Borg territory, then they would also make only a half-hearted attempt to assimilate the Empire.

Unless, of course, our friend Alyeska is completely wrong about the Empire being a more lucrative target than the Federation. After all, in spite of his insistence that Imperial technology isn't more "advanced or better", it has demonstrated superior propulsion speed, shielding and firepower; three things that the Borg would logically be quite interested in. Nevertheless, the slow speed of cubes outside of their own territory and its infrastructure of transwarp conduits would hamper any effort to assimilate faraway targets such as the Federation or an Imperial invasion force in the Alpha Quadrant.


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