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  1. #1
    First Lieutenant StargateMillennium's Avatar
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    Apr 2014
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    Default Solving Stargate's Stormtrooper effect

    I call it the stormtrooper effect. We want our bad guys to be terrifying so we set them up as these nigh undefeatable forces. But we need our good guys to win so we set up a scenario that puts our good guys in just enough danger but not bad enough that they can't win (so 5 bad guys super weapons, perfect aim, and undefeatable armor). But then we need to do it again but we want to ramp up the stakes but still let our good guys win. But how have our good guys survived? Eh...the bad guy weapons and armor are just slightly weaker than before. (7 bad guys with mildly super weapons, good aim, and tough armor). And again (10 bad guys with meh weapons, average aim and sorta armor). And again and again ad infinitum until your small band of of heroes are fighting a battalion paper mache that can't hit the side of a barn.

    I'm sure we can agree stargate suffers this in droves. The first serpent guards were able to withstand a lot of fire and the camera shots made it seem to emphasize that. The staff weapon was a good weapon to the point if O'Neil got his hands on one he started using that instead of the gun he was carrying. Ha'tak firepower measured from megatons to gigatons per bolt and could wipe out all life on a planet if the Goa'uld were pissed enough with one ship being all that's needed to invade earth.

    Then the jaffa became fodder who could fall at a single bullet, their staffs were weapons of terror that couldn't hit crap, and ha'tak explosions looked like rocket explosions. Hell, at least on youtube the ha'tak is considered a weak pushover that started losing the moment Earth started building ships, something completely untrue but is a testament to how they are portrayed.


    So, how do we solve this? What do you think? Me? I say let's start with better explanations. Like bullets penetrating jaffa armor because of armor piercing rounds. Or that the ha'tak can reduce its firepower because they want to enslave words rather than wipe them out if possible. Or that they want more penetration per shot to pierce shields as opposed to a wasteful explosion. And there's the portrayal. The bombing of Cal Mah really made the ha'tak look bad when it could be easily solved and could possibly save money on effects. Instead of tiny explosions all over the place in the camp, have a mountain the distance explode, covering the entire area in dust. Then just play the orbital bombardment sound effect over and over again.

    Just some ideas on how I'd solve Stargate's stormtrooper effect. What do you think?


    Stargate spin off series: Stargate Millennium
    https://www.fanfiction.net/u/5580179/StargateMillennium


  2. #2
    Captain Xaeden's Avatar
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    Oct 2007
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    Default Re: Solving Stargate's Stormtrooper effect

    Quote Originally Posted by StargateMillennium View Post
    Like bullets penetrating jaffa armor because of armor piercing rounds.

    ZUKHOV
    Is that a P-90, Colonel?

    O'NEILL
    50-round horizontal clip, 900 armor-piercing rounds per minute. Feel the weight of that sucker.

    -The Tomb, S5, E8.



    CARTER
    The warrior's armor is able to resist our strongest armor-piercing weapons, as well as absorb energy weapon fire.

    -Evolution, Part I, S7, E11


    I have a memory of an earlier reference that was made prior to the introduction of P-90s, but I can't place it at the moment. If that changes, I'll let you know.

  3. #3
    Lieutenant Colonel Platschu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solving Stargate's Stormtrooper effect

    You have to introduce believable enemies. As our heroes are gaining experiences and levels like in an RPG then the defeating of the opponent is getting easier and easier.

    Like the Wraith Hives and especially the Wraith Queens were dangerous enemies, but then they have destroyed their ships so easily. Same has happened with the Ha'tak ships. Apophis has arrived with 2 Ha'taks and then it was the main threat at season 1, but then when he had a dozen then it was not scarry at all in season 4. At least they have tried to maintain the feeling of danger with the Ori ships, but then the solution has come up quickly against the Priors. They had special skills, but then the anti-Prior device has defeated them a bit too easily.

    Some plots were even recycled. They have introduced two ultimate villains : Anubis and Adria then not our heroes, but other Ancients have neutralised them. Like even the writers didn't know how to solve their own story.

    In the mean time, the tone of the show has evolved too. I didn't really like how they have talked about their own role it was like a bad comic or parody. Some episodes were pretty bad. Especially when the R75 bugs have killed a complete off-world base, but then they are going to watch a movie as redshirts' life don't matter at all. Or when Daniel has talked about his first contact with the Ori and then Jack reaction was that he is hungry. This is simply badly written. I would have accepted a bit more humble and sensitive characters not necesarily cry babies who are moaning about everything and the world's problems, just not too ignorant of the suffering of other SG team members or even the enemies. The right balance should have been kept.

    The Jaffas would have been more interesting if they could have afford different Guards, different weapons or buildings. So they could have given them a different style. Anubis had his "ninjas" so that was a progress, but probably because Joe Mallozzi like oriental cultures and they would have fit better to Amaterasu by the way.

    So anyway there is a phrase : "our heroes can be only as strong as their enemies" or something like that. You have to invest time to develop your heroes and villains what they can do, how would they react, how can they evolve on both side, so the audience would feel the tone of the galaxy wild threat.
    Last edited by Platschu; August 8th, 2020 at 01:19 AM.
    "I was hoping for another day. Looks like we just got a whole lot more than that. Let's not waste it."

    "Never underestimate your audience. They're generally sensitive, intelligent people who respond positively to quality entertainment."

    "Individual science fiction stories may seem as trivial as ever to the blinder critics and philosophers of today, but the core of science fiction, its essence, has become crucial to our salvation, if we are to be saved at all."


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