Attack on the Borg Megasphere

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Attack on the Borg "Megasphere"
Date 242001.01 - 242003.06
Location Alpha Quadrant
Result Pyrhhic Federation Victory. Emergence of Borg Contingency. Resurrection of Pathfinder Project.
Federation Star Fleet Borg Collective
Notable Commanders
Matthew Thrawn
Tyra Crawford
Jane Fields
Harrison Boislevesque
Jason Simmons
Aitrus Colso
Serran Zan
Jennifer Braggins
Sierra Dawson
Borg Queen
Pioneer Expedition
USS Artemis, EX-11000
USS Copernicus, GSC-9035
USS Sheridan, DD-4086
USS Ozaki, FF-7168  
USS Philadelphia, FF-6053  
USS Yeager, FSC-28018 
USS Magellan, FSC-28019

First Fleet Reinforcements
USS Enterprise, CV-07 
USS Republic, CV-02
USS Pulsar, BB-100
USS Comet, BB-102
USS Nova, BB-106
USS Beckett, CX-2000 
USS Intrepid, CA-1708 
USS Dauntless, BC-1553
USS Chin'toka, CA-1375
USS Pegasus, CL-2500 
USS Drake, CL-2509 
USS Titan, CL-2007
Attack Force
USS Voltaire, ES-17694
USS Cicero, ES-17000 
USS T'Plana-Hath, ES-17511 
USS Ian Fleming, ES-17007 
USS Jacques Derrida, ES-17322 
USS Surak, ES-17001 
2nd Fighter Wing
7th Fighter Wing
100th Fighter Squadron
102nd Fighter Squadron
106th Fighter Squadron

Borg Megasphere, over 150 Borg Probes
Casualties and losses
10 Starships, 207 Attack Fighters destroyed.

2 Starships heavily damaged.
2 Starships damaged beyond repair.
Thousands of personnel killed or wounded.

Borg Megasphere destroyed, over 100 Probes destroyed

The Attack on the Borg Megasphere was a tactical operation masterminded by Commander Jennifer Braggins and undertaken by members of the Pioneer Expedition under the command of Captain Tyra Crawford and hastily-assembled volunteer crews from First Fleet under the command of Admiral Matthew Thrawn against a megalithic Borg vessel known as the 'Megasphere'.


Following the Artemis' run-in with the Collective on the Rogue Planet, Commander Braggins immediately petitioned Star Fleet Command for permission to plan an attack. Permission was granted, yet there was precious little actionable intelligence on the Megasphere thanks to the failure of Commander Gregg to launch probes before the gargantuan vessel and her escorts disappeared into a Transwarp Aperture.

The attack plan revolved around a small-scale surgical strike using Attack Fighters and Support Escorts to strike the interior of the Megasphere, destroying any weapons installations on the surface before entering the Megasphere itself and destroying any power sources they may come across. This would occur under the covering fire of a large contingent of starships of no smaller than Light Cruiser scale. Tactical analysts agreed that for the strike to be successful, it needed at least four Battleships, four Carriers, and no less than ten entire Squadrons from First and Third Fleets to take part; sixty-eight vessels at minimum.

Political Trouble

Despite the pressing need for ships, the request for so many ships was denied; the forces of the Pioneer Expedition would conduct the main assault while volunteers from First Fleet would provide fire support. It is unclear why the initial sixty-eight planned vessels was reduced to less than thirty, including two Frigates, two Scouts and a Destroyer, but many indicators point towards partisan division among members of the Admiralty who wanted to use any remaining available resources to defend their own homeworlds, all of them Core Worlds and already fortified position, should the attack fail.

The Attack Begins

The Artemis and her group formed the centre of the formation; Sheridan on point, Artemis slightly behind. Ozaki and Philadelphia on the flanks and Copernicus at the rear.

First Fleet split into two parts to form 'horns' to encircle the Megasphere. To port; Enterprise, Comet, Pulsar, Intrepid, Chin'toka and Drake. To starboard; Republic, Nova, Beckett, Dauntless, Pegasus and Titan. Ahead of the main force, the six Support Escorts and three double-strength squadrons of Attack Fighters pushed their way through the Borg lines before swinging round to engage from the rear.

Infiltration Teams 1 & 2

The Magellan and Yeager moved ahead of the main group, approaching the Megasphere under stealth and depositing their precious cargo: two well-armed Infiltration Teams. Team #1, commanded by Commander Dawson was tasked with disabling any surface defences, while Team #2, commanded by Lieutenant Commander Guarnere was to open external hatches to allow access to the attack group.

Team #1 would ultimately accomplish both goals, albeit in an unorthodox manner. Team #2 is believed to have been discovered and eliminated soon after being deposited aboard the Megasphere.

Attack Force

From the Bridge of the Voltaire, Commander Braggins led six Support Escorts and the better part of three Wings' worth of Attack Fighters through the Borg formation. Without access to the Megasphere's interior and with the gargantuan vessel still shielded, the decision was made to split into two groups and provide harassment support against the Borg Probes. This would prove costly, however, as a stray torpedo fired by the USS Ozaki destroyed several Attack Fighters and the USS Cicero, while the Voltaire herself was badly damaged.

Re-forming the Attack Force, Braggins continued mass-fire hit-and-run attacks against the Borg vessels, but took greater care to remain outside of the firing arcs of friendly ships.

Mounting Casualties

As the battle was joined by all forces, the Borg vessels began to swarm the lead elements. Intrepid and Drake were both crippled early on, but remained combat effective despite their damage. Pegasus was struck by several weapons, one believed to have struck her Warp Core, and was immediately destroyed with the loss of all hands. Likewise, losses among the fragile Attack Fighters were also mounting as collateral damage from the larger warships' duels; the tiny ships either struck by fire meant for larger vessels, caught in explosions, or destroyed by debris.

Republic suffered a direct hit on her communications array, crippling her ability to communicate with the rest of the fleet. Dropping from formation, the Republic continued to provide supporting fire but played no major part in the remainder of the battle. Enterprise was struck dead-centre by a beam of pure Antiproton energy, passing from bow to stern and exiting through the thankfully-empty Flight Deck; with Admiral Thrawn incapacitated and Republic unable to communicate, command passed to Crawford; both as senior Captain of the Task Force and ship with tactical superiority.

Sheridan and Copernicus Boarded

Early on in the battle, both Copernicus and Sheridan were boarded by enemy troops. Poor response times from the ships' Security departments meant a beachhead was established and control was removed from the command teams of both vessels. Though the Sheridan remained combat-worthy for a significant amount of time, the intruders prevented them contributing towards the battle in any meaningful capacity.

Sheridan's intruders would play a decisive part in the execution of a contingency plan, as just prior to the Attack Force launching their do-or-die mission through a gap in the Borg lines, the Sheridan broadcast the plan to the Megasphere itself. With the contingency plan aborted, another plan was quickly thrown together.

Desperate Measures

With Enterprise, Intrepid, Drake, and Pegasus destroyed, a new plan had to be formed. With time of the essence, the contingency plan promoted by Commander Braggins was modified; rather than the Attack Fighters and Support Escorts forming the core of the attack force, they would instead form an anti-torpedo screen at the fore of the formation now to be led by Artemis herself, though the damaged Voltaire would instead dock with her carrier and play no further part in the battle. The remaining ships formed a line astern formation and dove into the Borg lines at Full Impulse.

Taken by surprise, the Borg took precious seconds to adapt to the sudden and savage thrust into the area of their line believed to be strongest. Dozens of Probes were quickly dispatched, but the losses were not entirely one-sided. All four remaining Support Escorts and a large proportion of the Attack Fighters were destroyed, and another attack by the Megasphere's Antiproton Beam destroyed the foundering Beckett and killed the entire crew of the Titan. With the Battleships and remaining Heavy Cruisers rapidly falling behind thanks to the residual effects of the Antiproton Beam, the Artemis, Ozaki and Philadelphia proceeded on alone.

The Artemis' Last Stand

Ordering the Ozaki and Philadelphia to assume command of the remaining Attack Fighters, Crawford turned the Artemis to face the Borg vessels to provide cover for the smaller ships' escape. By powering her Slipstream Drive and other advanced technologies, the Artemis drew the Borg vessels to her like a lantern and engaged no less than forty Probes alone. Thanks to skillfull maneuvering, careful fire patterns, and the sheer number of enemy vessels blocking incoming fire, the Artemis destroyed or disabled one Borg vessel after another. As the number dwindled, however, the enemy fire became more accurate and more effective; damage and casualties mounting before the Borg once seemingly became aware of the Ozaki and Philadelphia on their final attack runs on a vulnerable point on the Megasphere.

With several hull breaches and one warp core offline and flooding her Engineering spaces with radiation, the Artemis turned to pursue the Borg vessels, firing with every weapon still functioning until the Borg vessels withdrew.

Critical Hit!

Philadelphia and Ozaki both scored good hits on the Megasphere with their emergency-issue Tricobalt Devices. This widened the crater left by Infiltration Team #1 from 1km2 to 25km2 and finally over 100km2. The Tricobalt weapons assigned to the surviving Attack Fighters penetrated deeper into the Megasphere, causing massive secondary explosions as one Ensign Martin “Marty” Bolen, pilot of A-1 Attack Fighter "Gunslinger 2-2" rammed his crippled craft into the rapidly-expanding crater.

As the Megasphere broke apart, final salvos of defiance spat at the Ozaki and Philadelphia. Ozaki was struck head on and gutted by a high-power plasma beam, while Philadelphia was struck by debris which shattered her shields and crushed her hull plating. The USS Magellan, which had remained in close proximity to the Megasphere despite the danger and an attack by a Borg Probe, managed to collect Infiltration Team #1 and withdrew moments before the Megasphere collapsed in upon itself, though she came under attack by a pair of Borg Probes, destroying one and driving the other off at the cost of her port nacelle and power grid.


The remaining Borg craft escaped into a Transwarp Aperture, joined by two mammoth constructs not unlike the Planet Killer first encountered by the starships Constellation and Enterprise in 2267.

Thousands of Star Fleet personnel were dead, 10 starships and 207 fighters had been destroyed outright. Several more starships were damaged beyond repair, while others would require extensive time in drydock. Of the Pioneer Expedition forces, only Copernicus remained in good condition. Of the reinforcements from First Fleet, only the Battleships and Heavy Cruisers had escaped major damage.

It would be two days before a relief force arrived from Earth, with search-and-rescue and repair efforts taking a further four days. The survivors were transferred back to Pioneer Outpost at a leisurely Warp 2, departing six days to the minute after their initial departure from Pioneer.

Political Ramifications

Opinion on the battle was divided. On one hand, Star Fleet had saved the Federation from its most daunting enemy. On the other, it had unleashed a new Borg Collective upon an unsuspecting galaxy. One thing was certain, however, the older classes of starship were no longer fit for purpose beyond the borders of the Federation. Construction on the Beckett-class USS Wueste was once again suspended, with resources and crew instead diverted towards the construction of newer Odyssey, Vesta and Luna class vessels.

Perhaps more importantly, new technologies would need to be acquired to defend the Federation. Voyager had acquired several such technologies on her travels in the Delta Quadrant, but only so much could be gleaned from transmitted logs and plans; Star Fleet needed to get its hands on the technology itself. Outfitting eight Slipstream vessels, led by the Artemis, Star Fleet recommissioned the Pathfinder Project.