Saga Atomic/Nuclear Bombs

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by darthbarracuda, Dec 16, 2012.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. darthbarracuda Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 4, 2012
    star 2
    Why are there never any nuclear bombs in Star Wars? OK so the Mandolorians had them, but that's all.

    I mean seriously...when the Trade Fed invaded Naboo and were marching into the Battle of Grassy Plains, why didn't someone just launch a nuke and kablam! everything is gone!
  2. DarthRelaxus Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2007
    star 5
    They saved the nuclear bomb for Indy 4.
    Saintheart, V-2 and Trask Ulgo like this.
  3. Trask Ulgo Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 8, 2012
    star 3
    And Battlefield Earth.
  4. Sistros Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 24, 2010
    star 6
    well who would have thrown a nuke?

    the trade federation wouldn't, they were on Naboo at the time occupying the planet

    Sidious wouldn't: too messy for him, and besides his apprentice was on the planet too
  5. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2009
    star 4
    There's your answer right there.
  6. darthbarracuda Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 4, 2012
    star 2
    no I mean why didn't the naboo launch a nuclear weapon? Or launch a nuclear weapon on Geonosis...

    And if not a nuclear weapon, then a really big detonation
  7. Yunners Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 30, 2006
    star 2
    I'm pretty sure Nukes are outdated in the Star Wars galaxy because they're 'dirty' weapons and kill indiscriminately.
    And the Naboo didn't even have an Army, what makes you think they'd have weapons of mass destruction?
  8. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    They had starfighters, and those starfighters had proton torpedoes, which, at the high end of the scale, definitely enter "weapon of mass destruction" territory.
  9. ATMachine Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 27, 2007
    star 3
    Nuclear weapons (or "atomics") actually do appear in the very first draft of The Star Wars (the film that evolved into ANH). When the Galactic Empire invades the planet of Aquilae, it uses a nuclear weapon to assassinate Aquilae's monarch, King Kayos (father of Princess Leia Aquilae). Later on, when the heroes leave the hidden underground fortress of the Aquilaean military (to go searching for transport off-world), the fortress is annihilated by an atomic explosion in order to preserve the secrecy of their flight.

    Since this draft borrows in major ways from Frank Herbert's Dune, which featured nuclear weapons (also calling them "atomics"), it's no surprise that they show up here too. The destruction of the "hidden fortress" is a nod to Akira Kurosawa's film The Hidden Fortress--where, however, the Princess' sanctuary is destroyed by a fire.

    It's also worth noting that there's no Death Star in this version. In the second draft, where the Death Star first appears, the nuclear weapons vanish. Lucas must have realized that the awesome destructive power of a Death Star obviated the need for more "primitive" nuclear weaponry.
  10. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    In practice there's plenty of middle ground between "blow up planet" and "blow up building"- in which nuke-type weapons might be used- which the EU takes advantage of.
  11. TheRevanchist Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 13, 2012
    star 2
    The Republic didn't had even an army. I think that after the Ruusan Reforms there was a process of total demilitarization.
  12. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    It did have "judicial forces" though.
  13. Yunners Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 30, 2006
    star 2
    I'd hardly call the N1's torpedoes "Weapons of mass destruction". It took two of them to destroy a relatively small and unshielded reactor.
  14. Count Yubnub Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 1, 2012
    star 4
    Why would the Trade Federation have nuclear bombs? They have a cheap conveyor belt droid army that they use to invade a planet without army. And the EU tells us that they initially got that army to defend their transport ships against terrorists. Why bombs?
  15. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    It took two proton torpedoes to destroy the Death Star's power regulator- and two concussion missiles (comparable in power) from the Falcon to destroy its reactor.

    It's possible that they channel an enormous amount of energy, but produce a relatively tiny explosion.

    Alternatively, people severely overrate them- they've been portrayed as multi-kiloton weapons by some writers, and often more powerful than that.
  16. Yunners Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 30, 2006
    star 2
    That's my point. They were targeted at reactors. Objects which were already brimming over with contained energy. It wasn't the torpedoes that destroyed the Death Stars or the Droid control ship. It was the resulting explosions created as the energy was released from their reactors.


    But getting back to the main point, the reason there were no atomic weapons used throughout the saga... well, why were there none used in Vietnam? or Iraq? Or The Falklands war? Just because we can use them. It doesn't mean we should. It stands to reason that they came to the same conclusion in the GFFA.
    Obviously that thinking changed a little when the Empire turned on the first Death Star.
    Count Yubnub likes this.
  17. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    They're also credited with being anti-ship weapons- designed to bring down shields.
  18. Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 4
    If some EU is to be belived the guns on the republic warships have HUGE fire power. One shot is more than all of Earths nuclear bombs put together.
    Which kind of makes the big ground battle in AotC rather pointless, one or two low-powered shots from one republic ship would have destroyed the droid army in seconds. It also raises the question why they bother with foot soldiers. When one ship can flatten cities in seconds and lay waste to whole planets in less than an hour, why bother with ground forces?
    I have seen proton torpedos have yield in the kT range but these guns are about 100 million times more powerfull. Makes you wonder why they bother with such puny weapons.

    Personally I have a hard time accepting some of these very high numbers, mostly because it contradicts ANH. Han is shocked and suprised that the empire has managed to destroy a planet and said that such a feat was beyond them. With this type of fire power, 5-10 ISD's could destroy a planet in less than a day.
    It also makes the DS into a not very big deal. One ship could destroy all life and buildings on a whole planet in less than an hour. Blowing it up is a bit more spectacular sure but both would mean the death of everyone and everything on the planet.

    Bye for now.
    Old Stoneface
    Last edited by Samuel Vimes, Dec 18, 2012
    darthbarracuda likes this.
  19. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    I agree with this much- a case can certainly be made that those sources overrate gun power considerably...
    ...however, it's pretty much impossible to make a planet explode unless you deliver enough energy, all at once, to overcome its gravitational binding energy. 5-10 ISDs blazing away for a whole day, using the energy estimates given, would leave a deep layer of molten rock all over the planet (tens of metres deep, possibly more) or even blast that layer off- so the ejecta achieves escape velocity but this is many orders of magnitude short of "make planet explode".
  20. Yunners Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 30, 2006
    star 2
    I think a lot of these numbers come from the one scene in Empire where a Star Destroyer is seen vaporizing an asteroid with a single turbolaser shot. I'm sure the special effects guys at ILM thought it looked pretty cool, but apparently the energy needed to do this is staggering.

    It's stuff like this that separates Star Wars and Star Trek. Trekkies go nuts for this type of stuff and feel it needs to be explained via numbers and graphs.
    Me, I just think it's an awesome visual and I leave it at that. Once you start to trying to apply real life physics to Star Wars, a lot of the universe falls apart.
  21. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    Blasting it to molten gravel would produce a similar visual effect- without requiring nearly as much energy.
  22. Yunners Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 30, 2006
    star 2
    Possibly, but they probably went with the easier option.
  23. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    The estimaters possibly went with the "biggest" option, regardless of whether it made sense or not.
  24. Yunners Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 30, 2006
    star 2
    I can't argue with that. [/Han]
  25. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    Might be interesting to see a revised version, based on much more conservative estimates.

    Torpedoes as nuclear (baradium)- but not presumed to be 100 kilotons- mini-bombs, more like a larger thermal detonator.
    Base Delta Zero operations as "scorchings" that warm the ground to lethal temperatures, but don't actually melt it. Possibly with a whole lot of airbursting detonations- rather than relying solely on turbolasers.

    And so forth.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.