CODEX: ROMULAN STAR EMPIRE
The Romulan Star Empire entered a period of self imposed isolation after its defeat at the Battle of Cheron during the Earth-Romulan War. When they finally came out of this isolation in 2266 in an incursion into the neutral zone, and again in 2269 in an event known as the Enterprise Incident, a whole new series of Romulan vessel was encountered. Unlike the "dome" shaped vessels encountered during the Earth-Romulan War, these new vessels embodied the Romulan bird motif. Known to outsiders simply as the Bird of Prey, the Cricket Class was the first of what would later be known as the Early Series. Several larger ships of the type were produced but quickly became obsolete. No ships of this type remain in service
Early Series Refit
The Early Series lacked some very basic (by Federation standards) systems. They still worked on pure fusion power, rather than the Matter-Antimatter reactors used by most other races at the time, lacked shielding (they relied very heavily on stealth and armour plate) and the plasma torpedo tube required vast amounts of power to use, limiting conventional primary weapons like disruptors. In the late 2270's, the Early Series was upgraded to fix these faults as best as was possible. An example of such a ship is the War Bird Class destroyer, an M/AM powered, shielded, more heavily armed Cricket Class Bird of Prey. The larger vessels of the early series proved unsuitable for such refits, and so another series was born.
Historical Note: Ships of these two series were made hopelessly obsolete during the General War, and by the time of the Khitomer Accords, were largely out of service.
The Ornith Series quickly became the most popular series among captains. The Early Series and Early Series Refits focused on construction around the heavy plasma torpedo tube. However, this had proved to be too power hungry for use on some smaller ships, and this lead to the development of the light plasma torpedo tube. The first class designed with two of these tubes in place of the standard single heavy tube was the Legion Class light cruiser. The Gladius Class frigate was another class of this era, and the Centurion Class cruiser was an interesting attempt to marry the classic shape and structural strength of the Early Series Refits, with the weaponry and better all-round capabilities of the new Ornith Series, however its design was halted when new torpedo technologies made the light plasma torpedo essentially obsolete.
The KR Series was the name given to classes of Klingon warships sold on a lend-lease agreement between the Klingon Empire and the Romulan Star Empire. This agreement did not last long, although some Klingons still see the Romulans as esrtwhile allies, should the need arise. These ships were initally operated "as-is" with klingon photon torpedo launchers and heavy disruptors, along with klingon cloaking devices, but soon they were brought into the shipyards of Romulus and Remus to be refitted into a more modern, more Romulan pattern. Such a class was the Klingon D6, originally operated with its standard klingon weaponry, but after a after being involved with a painful battle for the Romulan Star Empire (against the Gorn in the 4th Romulan-Gorn War of 2282), that would have been lost had it not been for these vessels, they were brought in and refitted to a brand new, and extremely modern standard. The new class, known as the Stormbird, is considered the Romulan equivilent to the K'T'Inga, and remains in large service today. Most other KR designs however were not so long lived. The Klingon C9 puw'LetH Class dreadnought (an older ancestor of the puwml Class) became the largest of the KR Series, refitted to Romulan standards and being known as the Condor Class. These ships proved troublesome however, and with the advent of purebred Romulan designs, were withdrawn. The Finch Class frigate (a Romulan refit of the pIH Class frigate) did not survive as long as its klingon brother, and before long the Stormbird was the last survivor.
Historical Note: The Stormbird was finally retired in the 2330s. along with its General War stablemate, the Peregrine. The Peregrine was an odd hybrid of the Stormbird and the torpedo tubes and structure of the Centurion Class, to form a ship with many medium plasma and parralax torpedo tubes. The Centurion Class warp core was retained, and so this became the only Romulan ship to fit two warp cores, and allowed rapid recharging of the plasma torpedo tubes.
Ornith Series Late
Advances in the field of plasma torpedo technology, gleamed from the 5th Romulan-Gorn War of 2284, lead to the development of the medium plasma torpedo, which used similar amounts of power to the light plasma, but with significantly more range and yield. The Centurion Class cruiser was redesigned on the drawing board to mount two of these new medium tubes rather than the light version, and other ships of the Ornith Series receieved a similar upgrade, namely the Gladius Class. However, the Legion Class proved the usefulness of the light plasma torpedo, in terms of rate of fire and speed over its heavier brethren, and it was retained on this class. Several new ship types were constructed to fill gaps in the Romulan Star Navy's fleet left with the retirement of older Early Series Warships. These included the War Eagle Class battleship (since downgraded to a dreadnought) and the Imperium Class battlecruiser, probably the two most successful of this design series. The Imperium revivied a very old technology dating back to the Earth-Romulan War. The Cohesive Fused Deuterium Irradiation Cannon, or CFDIC for short, was fitted as a secondary weapon to all Romulan vessels prior to the invention of the plasma torpedo, and has the primary function of killing crew.
Historical Note: The War Eagle proved it was more than capable even thought technical advancements had outpaced it by the end of the General War, and became the ancestor to the modern D'Deriedex Class Warbird (and more directly, the infamous Melak Class Warbird, members of which were the core of the Romulan fleet during the Tomed Incident, and at the Battle of Narendra III in 2344).
By the end of the Organian Conflict, the Romulan Star Navy was beginning to look quite dated and weary and it was clear new designs were needed to bring the fleet back to full strength and for the Star Empire to have ships capable of lasting well into the next century.
With this in mind, the Romulus Shipyards designed a series of ships that was imaginatively titled the "New Series". These ships were the latest in Romulan technology, and remain so at the time of writing. Ships of this type include the Preax Class escort, Senator Class command cruiser and the massive Imperial Hawk Class battleship. They employ a variety of technologies, including the medium and heavy plasma torpedo, and along with the Imperium Class, bring forward a very old technology, the CFDIC.
Historical Note: The New Series proved very sucessful, but ultimately bowed out to the new Warbird type vessels in the 2330's. The CFDIC was finally laid to rest after the Tomed Incident when it was proved to no longre be effective against modern shields and hull plating.
Codex: Romulan Star Empire
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