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19 hours ago, Seto Kaiba said:

Increasingly often, there isn't a "cannon fodder" and "elite" setup.

As to why they started in the first place... there are a number of different reasons.  Part of it was to give experienced pilots an aircraft with a little more oomph since they had the skills to use it to the fullest, esp. while shepherding the less experienced pilots in their platoons.  Part could be argued to be using those same experienced pilots as guinea pigs to test potential upgrades slated for future production blocks of the grunt model (e.g. improvements that went into the VF-1B and VF-1A late blocks).  Some variants started out as alternative mass production models that didn't shake out quite right (e.g. the VF-1J) or were built for a specific specialized role (the VF-1J again, being the only one that was natively compatible with the GBP-1S).

Eventually it settled down such that the "elite" variant is a fake elite variant that doesn't actually differ from the regular model in performance, but offers better communications capabilities so squadron or platoon leaders can better coordinate the troops, as on the VF-25 and VF-31 Custom.

 

EDIT: To clarify that first remark, the only main variable fighter generation to have that ace/grunt dichotomy which was actually expressed in performance was the 1st Generation (VF-1).  The 2nd Gen VF-4 and VF-5000 didn't have command variants at all, and neither did the 3rd Gen VF-11 and VF-14.  Of the three 4th Gen main VF candidates, none of them had a command model initially and the VF-19 only got one after the fact when Shinsei added one in their space-optimized second mass production type.  The 5th Generation is a split between not having command variants (e.g. the VF-31 Kairos) and having a "fake" ace model that doesn't actually differ in performance from the grunt model (e.g. VF-25, VF-31 Siegfried Custom).

So, am I correct in assuming that the additional head turrets are a part of that extra "oomph" in some VFs?

Edited by Devil 505
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On 2/20/2017 at 8:58 PM, kajnrig said:

This is more about planes in general, but it does have relevance to VFs.

Why is the cockpit located at the nose? What issues would arise from placing it in the middle or rear of an aircraft?

Given the growing prominence of coffin/camera cockpit systems in VFs, what would preclude a middle- or rear-situated cockpit?

Switching up cockpit placement could lead to some interesting VF designs, at any rate.

I would also be concerned about getting struck by some foward fuselage debris in the event of it taken damage if the cockpit were in the middle or rear.

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8 hours ago, Devil 505 said:

So, am I correct in assuming that the additional head turrets are a part of that extra "oomph" in some VFs?

In the firepower department, yeah... though since the coaxial guns on the monitor turret are typically the lightest weapon mounted on a VF, it's not exactly a substantial improvement in firepower vs. the base model.  The monitor turret variations sometimes come with other extras that boost performance like additional data link antennas or improved sensor systems.

Most of the "oomph" usually comes from a noticeably more powerful engine, either by installing a different engine variant or simply tuning the hell out of the existing engine... coupled with removing some or all of the safety-oriented performance limiters in the airframe control AI's cals.

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There is no specific date, but it likely happened in the late 2040s, post Dynamite 7. Some people claim the events of VFX and VFX2 were the spark for it (not the cause though), and those were into the early 2050s if I recall.

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35 minutes ago, Master Dex said:

There is no specific date, but it likely happened in the late 2040s, post Dynamite 7. Some people claim the events of VFX and VFX2 were the spark for it (not the cause though), and those were into the early 2050s if I recall.

So, the best estimate would be between 2050 (VF-X2) and 2058 (Macross the Ride).

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4 hours ago, Devil 505 said:

A different question, now.  Did they ever give a definitive date on when the U.N. Spacy became the N.U.N. Spacy?  Obviously, the VF-22 was still used as a SpecOps fighter when they transitioned, according to Delta.

Sometime in the late 2040's, by all accounts... but no one date is given.  Based on what Kawamori has said, the decentralization of the New UN Government was a gradual process brought about by the realities of trying to govern effectively when it could take years to get to some of the newly established colonies.

The earliest point where we chronologically see a New UN Forces kite is 2048, with the loss of the 117th Research Fleet... though that's the result of Ozma flying a stock CG model VF-171.

 

3 hours ago, Master Dex said:

There is no specific date, but it likely happened in the late 2040s, post Dynamite 7. Some people claim the events of VFX and VFX2 were the spark for it (not the cause though), and those were into the early 2050s if I recall.

Originally it was given that the coup d'etat in 2050-2051 (Macross VF-X2) was the cause for the military's reorganization... the novelization of Frontier and Kawamori's Otona Anime #9 interview demoted it to more a symptom of the decentralization, with PO'd UN Forces brass not happy about the military's power being on the decline and convinced (at least publicly) that humanity needed to present a strong, united front centered on Earth to survive in the galaxy.

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15 hours ago, Seto Kaiba said:

Sometime in the late 2040's, by all accounts... but no one date is given.  Based on what Kawamori has said, the decentralization of the New UN Government was a gradual process brought about by the realities of trying to govern effectively when it could take years to get to some of the newly established colonies.

The earliest point where we chronologically see a New UN Forces kite is 2048, with the loss of the 117th Research Fleet... though that's the result of Ozma flying a stock CG model VF-171.

 

Originally it was given that the coup d'etat in 2050-2051 (Macross VF-X2) was the cause for the military's reorganization... the novelization of Frontier and Kawamori's Otona Anime #9 interview demoted it to more a symptom of the decentralization, with PO'd UN Forces brass not happy about the military's power being on the decline and convinced (at least publicly) that humanity needed to present a strong, united front centered on Earth to survive in the galaxy.

The gradual transition makes more sense, especially when it comes to the VF-171's development.

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I just had a quick question for those that know more about aviation than I do. While I was re-watching parts of episode 6 of macross delta, something piqued my interest during the "preparation" scene where we see the VF-31's installed with booster packs. 

During start-up, a "helmet(?)" comes down onto Hayate's head, and is immediately removed. I was wondering what the purpose of this is, as it's not immediately explained (or if it is, the reasoning is lost to me). I've attached a screenshot of what I'm talking about.

Screen Shot 2017-02-26 at 7.45.43 PM.png

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35 minutes ago, Archer said:

I just had a quick question for those that know more about aviation than I do. While I was re-watching parts of episode 6 of macross delta, something piqued my interest during the "preparation" scene where we see the VF-31's installed with booster packs. 

During start-up, a "helmet(?)" comes down onto Hayate's head, and is immediately removed. I was wondering what the purpose of this is, as it's not immediately explained (or if it is, the reasoning is lost to me). I've attached a screenshot of what I'm talking about.

Screen Shot 2017-02-26 at 7.45.43 PM.png

That is the helmet section of the EX-Gear suit... normally it doesn't cover the whole head like that, and isn't deployed at all unless the EX-Gear is ejected from the fighter, but Hayate's was specially modified to provide protection because he stupidly refuses to wear a helmet.

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51 minutes ago, mickyg said:

That's the Ex-Gear helmet.  It was a test fit, I think.  It then folds backward into the "seat" before takeoff.

 

32 minutes ago, Seto Kaiba said:

That is the helmet section of the EX-Gear suit... normally it doesn't cover the whole head like that, and isn't deployed at all unless the EX-Gear is ejected from the fighter, but Hayate's was specially modified to provide protection because he stupidly refuses to wear a helmet.

 

Ah, thank you guys. I completely forgot the 31's even had EX-gear. Wish we got to see them used more a la Frontier.

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29 minutes ago, mickyg said:

Yeah, me too.  You have to admit though, Hayate flying his just outside of a nuclear blast was certainly... "interesting" though, right?

:p

I honestly hate that he doesn't wear a helmet though. Makes absolutely no sense, especially when many of their fights are up in space :angry:

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3 hours ago, Seto Kaiba said:

That is the helmet section of the EX-Gear suit... normally it doesn't cover the whole head like that, and isn't deployed at all unless the EX-Gear is ejected from the fighter, but Hayate's was specially modified to provide protection because he stupidly refuses to wear a helmet.

Kinda hard to miss since they explained it back in episode 4 with the girls' little message to Haya-Haya.

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On 09/26/2016 at 11:13 PM, Seto Kaiba said:

(But here's me wondering why the UN Forces were apparently so invested in the idea of having ties to the Navy's Black Aces that they founded a Spacy equivalent squadron TWICE... once in the years leading up to the First Space War, and again after they copped it in said war along with the ARMD Ranger.)

If the tradition is anything like the U.S. Navy, then squadron names have been adopted by different squadrons over the years.  Case in point, VF-17, VF-61, VF-84 and VF-103 (now VFA-103) have all had the "Jolly Rogers" moniker, and if I'm not getting Macross confused with "the show that must not be named," then the U.N. Spacy and later SMS Skull Squadrons carry the tradition even further.

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6 hours ago, Devil 505 said:

If the tradition is anything like the U.S. Navy, then squadron names have been adopted by different squadrons over the years.  Case in point, VF-17, VF-61, VF-84 and VF-103 (now VFA-103) have all had the "Jolly Rogers" moniker, and if I'm not getting Macross confused with "the show that must not be named," then the U.N. Spacy and later SMS Skull Squadrons carry the tradition even further.

Heh... let's do the time warp again, eh?  That post is a bit over five months old.

I guess it's my fault for not being more precise about my meaning... what I was referring to when I alluded to the UN Forces being a little bit too enthusiastic about having a squadron named the "Black Aces" was the fact that they had actually founded two distinct units with the UN Spacy fighter squadron designation SVF-41 and the name Black Aces.  It's not a case of passing the name and heraldry to another unit when a unit is disestablished, they straight up made the SVF-41 Black Aces twice.  (No, really!)

The UN Spacy's first SVF-41 "Black Aces" was a VF-1 Valkyrie unit stationed aboard ARMD-07 Ranger in the First Space War, and were lost with the ship when the Zentradi sunk her in Earth orbit.  Then, years later, a second SVF-41 "Black Aces" shows up as a squadron attached to a new Uraga-class carrier (CV-339 Bruno J. Global) in the 2040s flying the VF-11B Super Thunderbolt III.   They actually show up together in the same article in This is Animation: Macross Plus, with the Variable Fighter Squadron Marking section leading off with a Black Aces VF-1J, then just 9 pages later a separate SVF-41 entry for a Black Aces VF-11B.

Edited by Seto Kaiba
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1 hour ago, Seto Kaiba said:

Heh... let's do the time warp again, eh?  That post is a bit over five months old.

I guess it's my fault for not being more precise about my meaning... what I was referring to when I alluded to the UN Forces being a little bit too enthusiastic about having a squadron named the "Black Aces" was the fact that they had actually founded two distinct units with the UN Spacy fighter squadron designation SVF-41 and the name Black Aces.  It's not a case of passing the name and heraldry to another unit when a unit is disestablished, they straight up made the SVF-41 Black Aces twice.  (No, really!)

The UN Spacy's first SVF-41 "Black Aces" was a VF-1 Valkyrie unit stationed aboard ARMD-07 Ranger in the First Space War, and were lost with the ship when the Zentradi sunk her in Earth orbit.  Then, years later, a second SVF-41 "Black Aces" shows up as a squadron attached to a new Uraga-class carrier (CV-339 Bruno J. Global) in the 2040s flying the VF-11B Super Thunderbolt III.   They actually show up together in the same article in This is Animation: Macross Plus, with the Variable Fighter Squadron Marking section leading off with a Black Aces VF-1J, then just 9 pages later a separate SVF-41 entry for a Black Aces VF-11B.

I suppose if the entire squadron was wiped out, then it wasn't formally disbanded per se, so the VF-11B squadron is merely a continuation of the same squadron, rather than a successor.

That being said, my question is how did Skull Squadron go from a U.N. Spacy squadron to an S.M.S. Squadron?

 

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42 minutes ago, Devil 505 said:

I suppose if the entire squadron was wiped out, then it wasn't formally disbanded per se, so the VF-11B squadron is merely a continuation of the same squadron, rather than a successor.

That being said, my question is how did Skull Squadron go from a U.N. Spacy squadron to an S.M.S. Squadron?

 

It is likely not a formal thing. Keep in mind Skull Squadron isn't seen anywhere in UNS/NUNS outside of SDFM/DYRL. We can surmise Earth, and UNS/NUNS Command at Macross City will always have a Skull Squadron... but we don't really know.

More importantly, and the real answer... SMS has a Skull Squadron probably just because they wanted to have one. They're a private business, they can do that. It is likely seen as an homage to the Space War 1 heroes though.

Edited by Master Dex
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7 hours ago, Devil 505 said:

Case in point, VF-17, VF-61, VF-84 and VF-103 (now VFA-103) have all had the "Jolly Rogers" moniker, and if I'm not getting Macross confused with "the show that must not be named," then the U.N. Spacy and later SMS Skull Squadrons carry the tradition even further.

Just a brief addendum to my previous answer...

It's been implied a few times, but it's never been out-and-out stated that there's a direct in-universe connection between the UN Spacy's SVF-1 "Skulls" and the old US Navy VFA-103 "Jolly Rogers".  Since the SVF-1 Skulls were originally the VF-0 program's Skull Platoon, it's possible that the origin is not even an American reference as the original leader was the Russian ace D.D. "Daisy" Ivanov and a skull insignia is his personal mark on his VF.  (Ivanov may have gone with the Jolly Roger to appease the Americans, or he may just be a huge Top Gun fan pleased to be a pilot of what started out as a heavily modified F-14.)

The-Show-That-Must-Not-Be-Named did something quite strange.  It drew an explicit connection between the two... but in its version, VF-84 is still around in 1999 (the real-world equivalent was disestablished in 1995) and calls itself "Skull Squadron" instead of the "Jolly Rogers".  Roy was a member until the squadron was lost when its carrier was sunk by a tsunami caused by the explosive crash of the soon-to-be-SDF-1.

 

 

9 minutes ago, Devil 505 said:

I suppose if the entire squadron was wiped out, then it wasn't formally disbanded per se, so the VF-11B squadron is merely a continuation of the same squadron, rather than a successor.

Normally if a unit is completely wiped out, they retire the number... but that doesn't exactly happen often in the real world (anymore).

One has to wonder what technicality they whipped up to make that work.

 

 

10 minutes ago, Devil 505 said:

That being said, my question is how did Skull Squadron go from a U.N. Spacy squadron to an S.M.S. Squadron?

Strategic Military Services is not a formal military organization, it's a civilian private contractor with no official organization ties to the New UN Forces.  It's worth wondering whether they chose "Skull" for its close association with elite units (e.g. the SVF-1 Skulls, who were famous from both history and historical dramas, and Max and Milia's elite "Dancing Skulls" special forces team) or Ozma is simply a rabid fanboy for one of those groups the way he is for Fire Bomber and management decided to roll with it to keep him happy.

Also worth noting is that what Ozma commanded was Skull platoon... not a squadron.  SMS doesn't seem to organize its troops into anything larger than a platoon, though as such a small outfit this isn't surprising given the platoon is also the smallest sub-unit of the military's own VF squadrons.  To give an example, the SVF-1 Skulls in the original series had three of its platoons identified by name: Skull platoon was its lead platoon, Hikaru's first command was its Vermilion platoon, and two background characters who give Shammy a hard time are identified as in the squadron's Purple platoon.

All told, the New UN Spacy doesn't seem to consider the SVF-1 Skulls out of action... they've never passed the "Skulls" moniker to any other squadron despite there being veteran pilots from SVF-1 still out and about after the Megaroad-01 left Earth.  That may have something to do with how the ship is officially just missing rather than "missing, presumed destroyed".

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14 hours ago, Seto Kaiba said:

Just a brief addendum to my previous answer...

It's been implied a few times, but it's never been out-and-out stated that there's a direct in-universe connection between the UN Spacy's SVF-1 "Skulls" and the old US Navy VFA-103 "Jolly Rogers".  Since the SVF-1 Skulls were originally the VF-0 program's Skull Platoon, it's possible that the origin is not even an American reference as the original leader was the Russian ace D.D. "Daisy" Ivanov and a skull insignia is his personal mark on his VF.  (Ivanov may have gone with the Jolly Roger to appease the Americans, or he may just be a huge Top Gun fan pleased to be a pilot of what started out as a heavily modified F-14.)

The-Show-That-Must-Not-Be-Named did something quite strange.  It drew an explicit connection between the two... but in its version, VF-84 is still around in 1999 (the real-world equivalent was disestablished in 1995) and calls itself "Skull Squadron" instead of the "Jolly Rogers".  Roy was a member until the squadron was lost when its carrier was sunk by a tsunami caused by the explosive crash of the soon-to-be-SDF-1.

Strategic Military Services is not a formal military organization, it's a civilian private contractor with no official organization ties to the New UN Forces.  It's worth wondering whether they chose "Skull" for its close association with elite units (e.g. the SVF-1 Skulls, who were famous from both history and historical dramas, and Max and Milia's elite "Dancing Skulls" special forces team) or Ozma is simply a rabid fanboy for one of those groups the way he is for Fire Bomber and management decided to roll with it to keep him happy.

Also worth noting is that what Ozma commanded was Skull platoon... not a squadron.  SMS doesn't seem to organize its troops into anything larger than a platoon, though as such a small outfit this isn't surprising given the platoon is also the smallest sub-unit of the military's own VF squadrons.  To give an example, the SVF-1 Skulls in the original series had three of its platoons identified by name: Skull platoon was its lead platoon, Hikaru's first command was its Vermilion platoon, and two background characters who give Shammy a hard time are identified as in the squadron's Purple platoon.

All told, the New UN Spacy doesn't seem to consider the SVF-1 Skulls out of action... they've never passed the "Skulls" moniker to any other squadron despite there being veteran pilots from SVF-1 still out and about after the Megaroad-01 left Earth.  That may have something to do with how the ship is officially just missing rather than "missing, presumed destroyed".

Thanks for the clarification.  It may have been almost a decade since I completely abandoned "the show that must not be named," but there are still a few things that I'm trying to sort out when it comes to the SDFM/DYRL era.

One interesting thing that I read about the Skulls is that Millard Johnson (as in Macross Plus) was a member.

Edited by Devil 505
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17 minutes ago, Devil 505 said:

Thanks for the clarification.  It may have been almost decade since I completely abandoned "the show that must not be named," but there are still a few things that I'm trying to sort out when it comes to the SDFM/DYRL era.

One interesting thing that I read about the Skulls is that Millard Johnson (as in Macross Plus) was a member.

No worries, that's why we've got this thread after all. :)

Yeah, Millard was a member of SVF-1... he was the one I was referring to when I said there were still old members of the Skulls lurking around who could have, but didn't, pass the torch to a new squadron.

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On 2/28/2017 at 6:24 PM, Seto Kaiba said:

Normally if a unit is completely wiped out, they retire the number... but that doesn't exactly happen often in the real world (anymore).

One has to wonder what technicality they whipped up to make that work.

Well, in fairness... a LOT of units were completely wiped out in Space War 1.  Like, almost all of them. If you retire all those numbers, you start getting some really awkward unit designations.

No one wants to be part of the 10,541st when they could be the 41st, and a lot of traditions die fast when 99 percent of humanity is vaporized in an eyeblink.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Why are the rear thrusters of the newer valykries that small? Can they even propel you at 500 km/h (If we compare it to the VF-1). I can understand the VF-27 and the YF-29 has the other 2 engines at the wings push you forward.

How about the YF-30 and VF-31, can you guys tell what does it look like?

DSCN0191.JPG

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19 minutes ago, Sir Galahad® said:

Why are the rear thrusters of the newer valykries that small? Can they even propel you at 500 km/h (If we compare it to the VF-1). I can understand the VF-27 and the YF-29 has the other 2 engines at the wings push you forward.

How about the YF-30 and VF-31, can you guys tell what does it look like?

Perhaps it's better to think of those rear thrusters more as manoeuvring rockets, then for propelling the craft forward at great speed...

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1 hour ago, Sir Galahad® said:

Why are the rear thrusters of the newer valykries that small? Can they even propel you at 500 km/h (If we compare it to the VF-1). I can understand the VF-27 and the YF-29 has the other 2 engines at the wings push you forward.

How about the YF-30 and VF-31, can you guys tell what does it look like?

On the VF-1, the engines in the "backpack" that are used to provide part or all of the forward thrust in GERWALK mode aren't really intended for sustained use.  They're liquid-fuel rockets with a high maximum thrust but a limited burn time.  You wouldn't want to rely on them to provide all your forward thrust, because you'd run out fairly quickly.  GERWALKs tend to fly forward partly by leaning forward a bit and having the thrust the main engines produce at an angle to the ground.

The backpack thrusters on the VF-25 look, from their animation, to be something more like miniature thermonuclear reaction engines...

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11 hours ago, Seto Kaiba said:

On the VF-1, the engines in the "backpack" that are used to provide part or all of the forward thrust in GERWALK mode aren't really intended for sustained use.  They're liquid-fuel rockets with a high maximum thrust but a limited burn time.  You wouldn't want to rely on them to provide all your forward thrust, because you'd run out fairly quickly.  GERWALKs tend to fly forward partly by leaning forward a bit and having the thrust the main engines produce at an angle to the ground.

The backpack thrusters on the VF-25 look, from their animation, to be something more like miniature thermonuclear reaction engines...

As opposed to the YF-21/VF-22, in which the main engines are separate from the legs altogether.

 

vf-22-gerwalk-multipleviews.gif

Edited by Devil 505
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I have two questions:

Why dont (the majority of) Macross Valks have rear horizontal stabilizers? 

Why did the Valk nose and cockpit sections go from seeming upright/ straight- to a curved more beak like design? 

Edited by blackconvoy_D01
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25 minutes ago, blackconvoy_D01 said:

Why dont (the majority of) Macross Valks have rear horizontal stabilizers?

Thrust vectoring nozzles, vernier thrusters and "ruddervators" have eliminated the need for horizontal stabilizers.

Edited by Devil 505
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3 hours ago, blackconvoy_D01 said:

Why did the Valk nose and cockpit sections go from seeming upright/ straight- to a curved more beak like design? 

Aesthetics. Kawamori likes the Su-27's nose.

That's what it is from a meta standpoint, at least. Not sure if there's any reason in-universe. The "beak" has been a feature since at least the VF-11.

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Just now, kajnrig said:

Aesthetics. Kawamori likes the Su-27's nose.

That's what it is from a meta standpoint, at least. Not sure if there's any reason in-universe. The "beak" has been a feature since at least the VF-11.

From the YF-24 onwards, it's because the Inertia Store Converter is inside the nose.

The SV-51 has the nose because it was partially designed by Sukhoi.

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On 3/13/2017 at 4:14 PM, Devil 505 said:

From the YF-24 onwards, it's because the Inertia Store Converter is inside the nose.

The SV-51 has the nose because it was partially designed by Sukhoi.

Just aesthetics, actually... the YF-30 (and, IIRC, VF-31) don't have the bent/beak nose and they still have ISC.

 

 

1 hour ago, blackconvoy_D01 said:

What does the "N" in; SDFN Global stand for? Also why was it decided to still use such older Macross model ships her and in the Gaiden Manga?

As far as I know, we've never been told what the N in SDFN stands for... but it denotes the mass-production Macross-class ships, since the hull classification symbol SDF was passed to the Megaroad-class emigrant ships starting from SDF-2.

The available information indicates that twelve mass production-type Macross-class ships were constructed in the early years of the emigrant fleet operations, to serve as "pilot fish" securing the advance of the actual emigrant ship.  We have names and designations for three of those ships so far: SDFN-1 General (Takashi) Hayase, SDFN-4 General Bruno J. Global, and SDFN-8 General Vrlitwhai Kridanik.  Some fleets seem to have returned their Macross-class ships at some point after establishing a colony, while others seem to have kept theirs.  Uroboros, the planet from Macross 30: Voices Across the Galaxy, was the first planet we saw that kept theirs... it had been parked on the Yuria archipelago in storm attacker mode, and was being used as a city (Vrlitwhai City).  The unidentified SDFN on Vivre/Pipure is probably in the same situation.

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15 hours ago, Seto Kaiba said:

Just aesthetics, actually... the YF-30 (and, IIRC, VF-31) don't have the bent/beak nose and they still have ISC.

I suppose one could argue that the YF-30/VF-31 is more advanced, so the ISC is more miniaturized, but given how VFs like the VF-171 have a longer nose without ISC, I guess it really does come down to aesthetics, never mind the fact that longer noses do impair visibility in Fighter/GERWALK.

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