I do not own Mass Effect, TV Tropes or Real Life. All other works referenced here belong to their respective owners.
This is a parody. Alien invasions are serious business. If aliens are sufficiently advanced to pass the interstellar space then they should be sufficiently advanced to successfully invade a planet... The key word being 'should'.
How To Invade an Alien Planet is a humorist guide about invading alien planets on TvTropes. It lampshades the most common mistakes made by alien invaders, and points out how to avoid them. The bold text in the story are quotations of said guide. Given that TvTropes is managed by users, quotes might not be up to date with the current content.
Preparation And Planning
Greetings reader! This is my recollection of events that lead to... let's just say something very interesting. If you do not care about how I got entangled in this mess, feel free to skip this part. Nothing interesting happens here.
My name is not important, who I was at that time somewhat is. I was a third son of a somewhat important noble in the Batarian Hegemony. As the third son, my only career choice was either death from natural causes (poison, knife to the back and sniper round to the head are considered 'natural causes' among aristocracy) or joining the military and keeping my head down. I choose the later. It wasn't as bad as one might think, third son of a noble was still a noble, so I didn't have to do any grunt work, and was promoted quicker than my plebeian peers. It did help that compared to my fellow nobles, I was moderately competent, and didn't treat my duties as a punishment.
When the entire debacle started, I was a captain of a Hegemony cruiser. I knew something was going on, some sort of black op being prepared, but I did my best to not get my ship involved. One might think that such black ops were a huge thing, but in the Hegemony dozen ships vanishing to raid some distant colony as 'pirates' was a normal Tuesday. Most of the times, the ships quietly returned back to the Hegemony, but sometimes they were caught by a Turian patrol. In that case, it was better to die fighting than get caught alive, as all that did had their families turned into slaves, or outright killed to maintain plausible deniability. That's why all captains that had political clout did everything they could to avoid such missions. Not that it was hard to do so, there were enough ships crewed by men from the plebs to participate in missions like that.
When the fleet sent away did not return I just shrugged. I wasn't involved, so why should I care? When the second fleet, one that was very hastily (for the definition of 'haste' in the Hegemony) also disappeared, I cared not. When the Hegemony send a third fleet and no one came back, I started to get worried. The long list of 'disposable' ships became much, much shorter. I still could avoid getting into another large deployment, but if that one failed, the Hegemony would either have to publicly announce that they were at war and were loosing, or start sending ships with actual nobility among the crew members.
Truth to be told, the course of events caught me by complete surprise. I got promoted. By itself, that wasn't unusual. Between the first failed operation, and the last one I went from a captain commanding a single cruiser to commodore commanding an entire frigate pack. It was the lowest flag rank, and one that I would probably retire with, but it was a flag rank nevertheless. Unfortunately, I was a victim of my success, as previous admirals were typical nobles that expected the world to work to bend over their wishes, I was a moderately competent flag officer. In other words – someone who could actually have a chance of winning whatever scuffle Hegemony found itself in. Cue another promotion and jumping over two ranks to full admiral.
Which brings me to the moment the story starts. I was in my new office, the furniture of my predecessor left there as he no longer needed it, suffering from a bad case of death, I heard. I still had my commodore uniform, the new one wasn't even made yet. The files describing the failed attempts were right in front of me. My orders were to go through that data, then plan and lead a successful invasion. Invasion against an enemy that already killed a fair share of Hegemony's navy, along with sailors on the ships. If I failed to propose a plan that would satisfy mu superiors, I would quickly find myself in afterlife. And not the nice one in Omega. On the other hand, if the plan sounded good, I would be the one to implement it... Damned if I do, damned if I don't.
Not having any other options, I started reading.
Meeting The Aliens
What started the madness was the same thing that started all the wars in known history – greed. The elites in Hegemony wanted slaves. Our entire economy was based around slavery, and the sad truth was – it was failing. Getting new slaves became more and more costly. Hence the mad idea that some idiot came up with – open several Primary Relays inside Hegemony's space and look for some primitive race to conquer and enslave.
Unless your robots are really dumb and only sentients can do a job you can't or won't, don't bother going to other planets to enslave the population. Better yet, buy/steal their automation technology instead! (By the way, how did your species get into space without it?)
Obviously, doing all this was highly illegal, and the typical ass covering Hegemony did when engaging in slavery operations might not be enough. Hence all ships involved in this were officially decommissioned and sold to some private investors. All sailors that found themselves out of job, quickly found new jobs at completely different ships that were in no way connected to Batarian Hegemony. Seriously, you can trust us.
All competent captains and many high ranking officers quickly vacated the premises, knowing very well that this can't end well. It was fine with the new owners, as they apparently planned to lead the expedition themselves. Enough officers stayed to keep the ships running, either due to promises of high pay, or due to not having other options. I guess it was thanks to them the first two extra-relay expeditions ended without casualties. Well, without many casualties.
The third Relay had lead right into an inhabited system. The race out there was primitive, no Mass Effect technology whatsoever. Even the idiots in charge should be able to defeat them, and yet, they didn't.
As I don't care about the fools that got themselves killed, I decided to give the commanders numbers instead of names, easier to remember for me.
#1, as he was the first commander, had a dreadnought, twenty cruisers, twenty frigates and a dozen freighters carrying troops. Such force was enough to take over any mayor (non-Turian, due to their very annoying 'every citizen is a soldier' policy) colony. Taking over a homeworld of an undeveloped species should be a walk in a park for them, even with a person like #1 in charge.
Recall that a planet is not a city, and thus any attempt to conquer one is roughly equivalent to a world war and not a small battle, and that planets, unlike cities, can be and usually are entirely self-sufficient. Make sure that you have either sufficient technological superiority/firepower to render any of the natives' numerical and logistical advantages useless, or get yourself a billion-soldier army, a million-man planning department, and get ready for several years of potentially fruitless hard slog.
The plan #1 came up was simple, after arriving into the system, he slowly moved his force towards the planet. It was supposed to intimidate the population, so when he reached the orbit one day after jumping into the system, and ordered them to surrender, they would immediately do so. After that #1 would execute all leaders and government workers to show that now Batarians were in charge and start enslaving the population. #1 was so assured of his own superiority that he did not prepare any back up plans, as he believed that nothing could go wrong.
The indigs have been figuring out how to govern themselves for longer than you, and have probably come up with some helpful suggestions on how to do so. In other words, Read the Freaking Manual.
Except it did. #1 wasn't an admiral in the full sense of the name. He did not go through the academy, did not start as a low rank officer and work his way up, did not participate in any exercises or fleet maneuvers. He got the rank because he was rich, very, very rich. Not to say that #1 was an idiot, he was a very good manager and finished the Batarian equivalent of college with masters in history... of warfare. Due to this, #1 decided to use a conquest strategy described in a book about conquering primitive species. Completely by an accident said book was written by him.
After reaching the orbit, #1 issued his demand of surrender to the entire planet. In fluent Batarian. Without any kind of translation. It wasn't because he believed that the aliens should be fluent in his language, it was because he was following his own book, and the book assumed that the invasion target would understand Batarian language for some reason.
Well, I guess I have overestimated #1's intelligence, that or he watched way too many Trek Star episodes where all those aliens speak fluent Batarians, despite meting Batarians from Enslaverprice for the very first time.
#1's poor diplomatic skills did not end there. The book assumed that the government of the invaded planet would be fully unified. In this case, this assumption was wrong. The planet in question had over a hundred governments that fought among each other more often than not, any kind of unification was a pipe dream.
Hire a really good cultural interpreter to help you get around those unfortunate misunderstandings that occur when you are dealing with alien language and customs. It really damages any occupation attempt when the first thing the locals hear you say is how your hovercraft is full of eels rather than how your spacecraft is full of orbital-bombardment cannons.
After waiting a day and not getting a satisfying response (not that the natives could respond without understanding the language), #1 ordered an invasion. As #1 was still following his book, he decided to use his own plan described in it – invade a hundred of the biggest cities at the same time to create chaos and prevent the natives from concentrating their own forces. Obviously, it wasn't that easy. The fleet had enough lifting capacity to send no more than thirty thousand soldiers at the same time. That's three hundred soldiers per city... hardly an invasion force when one remembered that those cities had population measured in millions. But #1 was following his book, and it has assumed that the invaders held complete and total technological superiority over the aliens. It also assumed that the invaders had unlimited resources, both manpower and equipment, so hundreds of cities could be invaded by tens of thousands soldiers per city. In the book at least.
Don't commit your entire force to the first wave. Keep reserves, including your high command, at a safe distance. If the natives are pushovers, you haven't lost anything. If they're tougher than expected, you've got The Cavalry to turn the tide. If they find an Achilles' Heel, the second wave can figure out how to counter it. If all else fails, you've got a way to retreat.
The attack went worse than I expected. Truth to be told, I expected the troops to land and be overwhelmed by the numerical superiority of the natives. I did NOT expect two thirds of the invasion shuttles to be shot down before they could even reach the ground. Something was very wrong with this situation. Somehow, the natives possessed highly advanced planetary fighter crafts that could damage the shuttles without using Mass Effect technology. That was rather bad.
Before you even start shooting, study the native technology to make sure that your super-advanced weaponry isn't startlingly inferior to its mundane equivalent.
After reading the files on the alien technology, it became obvious to me that the situation wasn't 'rather bad', it has passed 'rather bad' territory at FTL speeds, avoided 'we are fucked' and FUBAR entirely, and landed in 'run for your lives' territory. And given that the fleet didn't come back, it would probably get even worse. But let's go back to the natives and their wonder weapons.
Turns out, the natives had mastered flight over a century before the invasion. From that time they went from a simple triplane to something they called 'jet fighters'. Said 'jet fighters' were faster and more maneuverable than the shuttles. But even with that kind of advantage, the shuttles should be able to reach the ground without much looses. This is where the 'missiles' came in.
'Missiles' were some sort of unmanned suicidal homing drones which the natives used by hundreds. Each 'jet fighter' carried several of those 'missiles' and used them, instead of the on board cannons, to fight the enemy units. Missiles proved to be the bane of the invasion forces. A single missile was enough to drain the shields, two were enough to shot down a shuttle. The aliens had thousands of them. I saw one picture where trails left by those 'missiles' covered the entire sky. I'm quite sure it wasn't taken at that point in time as there weren't that many targets in one place to warrant that kind of firepower, but I might be wrong.
What was the worst thing about those missiles was not the damage they could do, but their range and speed. Pilots used to fight and dodge at low speeds were unprepared for missiles fired by enemies they could not even see, moving faster than they could react. Apparently many pilots dispersed their displeasure over the unfairness of the alien weapon. Hilarious, I know. They were completely fine with invading those aliens, and once aliens started to fight back, they start whining like little bitches about it being unfair.
Still, I can't say the entire plan was a fiasco. #1 even got his wish of being the first Batarian on the alien land! His shuttle, being way ahead of others, crash landed as the first.
With Admiral #1's death, the command passed to, ekhm, Vice Admiral #2. #2 also had no military background whatsoever. He was a young playboy who got the job because his father was rich and wanted his son to prove himself. To not say that #2 lacked any kind of skills, because he didn't. #2 was a very good fighter pilot and a reasonably good commander of a fighter wing. It was because simulated fighter battles were very popular among Batarian elites. Kind of a myth of honorable pilots fighting each other in a battle of skill and wits.
The problem was that it had very little to do with how real fighter battles went. The whole job of the pilot was to get close enough to fire all his torpedoes, then turn around and go back for more ammo. Dogfight that preoccupied Batarian elites had no place in real battles as interceptor type fighters were replaced with GARDIAN lasers long time ago.
#2 saw alien fighters returning to their bases to refuel and rearm. He did maintain the myth of being a honorable fighter pilot, which did not mean he had any intention to fight fair. Seeing the alien fighters grounded #2 ordered all his fighters to attack.
This is where things went wrong. Again.
#2 decided to enter the atmosphere over the large body of water, and approach one of the alien continents. On his way there, he planned to destroy a floating fighter base. For some reason, the aliens were quite fond of those type of bases, and had couple dozens of them.
That was the moment when things went wrong. Apparently, the alien floating fighter bases were guarded by dozens of floating fortresses. The fortresses were armed with the missiles that were more than a match for the attacking fighters.
Despite taking enormous looses, #2 pressed the attack. This was the moment when aliens showed yet another miracle weapon – some sort of a turret armed with a gun that had several rotating barrels stuck together. I wondered why didn't they just use a single barrel or several non rotating barrels, but those people were aliens, they probably had some alien reason for a using an insane design like that.
The turrets proved to be very problematic in several ways. They were VERY accurate, in fact, they were accurate enough to shot down our torpedoes. They fired very, very fast, which caused to drain the shields and destroy any fighter that got too close, and finally, they could rapidly switch between targets after each kill.
Seriously? This is just bullshit. From what I just read, those aliens had some sort of GARDIAN system. But that's not possible, right? How come they could have developed GARDIAN equivalent without advanced VIs, VIs that require Mass Effect based technologies to boost their computation so they are able to predict paths of incoming fire. My best guess at that time was that the aliens simply got lucky. Their weapon system was based around guns with multiple rotating barrels, they could obviously put lots of slugs in the air, and with that many ordinance flying, it was obvious they will hit something. The something being our fighters and their torpedoes.
One thing I couldn't deny was bravery of the pilots. When they finally disengaged, only dozen fighters left the battlefield. #2 wasn't among them.
Yet again, hundreds Batarians died and yet again, the chain of command changed. This time it passed to the commander of the first cruiser group, #3.
#3 had a rather large problem. With almost no fighter craft and no shuttles, he could not reach the planet to land his (remaining) invasion forces. He could bombard it from orbit, but no sane commander would do that. Not because they cared about the alien civilians, not because they cared about the Council law, but because by doing so he would pay with his own head. Literally.
The Council did turn a blind eye on slaver raids, but the 'Thou Shall Not Bombard Garden Worlds From Orbit' law was enforced heavily, and the Council did demand the head of the last commander who believed he could get away with it on a silver plate or, to quote, 'The Hegemony will not enjoy the experience', end quote. Because of that, #3 was not willing to bombard the planet as, sooner or later, his head would be delivered before the Council. Without the rest of his body accompanying it.
The plan #3 came up with wasn't bad per se, using both frigate squadrons, and the cruiser squadron #3 commanded, to cover transport ships as they landed on the planet. It even worked... for a moment.
The aliens tried their standard approach of firing dozens of those homing drones, but even when GARDIAN efficiency was reduced due to atmosphere, they were enough to take down the incoming fire. Until the aliens used another impossible weapon.
OK, the missiles were weird. The floating fortresses were insane, their GARDIAN-like thing was ridiculous, but this? UNDER-water fortresses... A ship that travels under water AND somehow fires those missiles from below surface to strike targets in the air. Honestly, those aliens were insane.
The underwater fortress fired a single homing drone that avoided entering GARDIAN range and went above the fleet where it exploded.
Well fuck, I did not expect nukes. The nuke did very little direct damage, distance was too high, but it did something much, much worse – the Electromagnetic Pulse shot down electronics around the ships. Now, I know that many people believe that the electrostatic discharge every ship has to do after traveling via FTL is the same as electromagnetic pulse caused by a nuclear weapon, but believe me – they are not the same. They aren't even remotely close. Well, close from my perspective, a qualified physicist might say otherwise.
Back to the nuke. Nuclear weapons in space are unheard of. They are too large and cumbersome to be effectively used as valid weapons. Still, they might be used, so ships are somewhat resistant to EMP, standard operation protocols were created, and crews trained in their application. It's like unarmed combat and infantry, nobody expects infantry to use those skills in actual combat, but they are still trained in them just in case.
The problem was, the protocols were designed with a space battle in mind...
#3 shouting various orders through a simple radio, that was robust enough to survive the attack, did not help the situation at all.
The standard protocol called to restart systems in the following order – shields, GARDIAN, secondary weapons, propulsion, main cannon, ME core. Due to the nature of space battles, a ship without shields will die in seconds, GARDIAN was just as important. The following order was probably made by an armchair admiral, as personally I would put the main cannon at the end, with secondary weapons close behind. But even that change wouldn't save those ships.
The problem was that without the Mass Effect core, the ships had aerodynamics of a falling brick. As the engines came on-line, captains found themselves falling nose down towards the planet's surface. The instinct reaction was most likely to fire their nose thrusters to slow down descent. It would work IF the Mass Effect core was on-line, without it, the thrusters were simply unable to slow million ton space ships. The cruisers were as good as gone. The frigates fared a bit better, they had more powerful thrusters, and were much more maneuverable, allowing them to level the ship and use the bottom thrusters to slow down descent, so the crash didn't destroy them.
Transports also survived reasonably untouched, not only they had less systems to worry about, their crews had separate procedures for Mass Effect cores going down during the landing.
#3, being on one of the cruisers, did not survive the operation.
Now, the question was why didn't the aliens just nuke the invasion forces? Could it be their only device? Let's see...
Those frigging aliens had more nukes. In fact, they had more nukes than the Citadel Races. Combined. AND that was AFTER they disbanded, for some unexplained reason, most of their arsenals.
Fuck this shit. I'm going out. Maybe my new uniform is ready, with it I might be able to talk my way into some high class party, or something. It's been ages since I was in the Capital.
I restarted reading the documents on the next day, after my hangover finally disappeared. The night gave me a good opportunity to think about the invasion. #3 got the troops to the ground, and they weren't outright nuked, so how come they've lost?
As I started to read it became plain obvious why the aliens did not nuke the invasion forces. The idiot decided to attack one of the main islands on that world, thinking that a large area of water would stop the aliens from reinforcing their troops, while he could just drop all supplies by using freighters under escort. The problem was that the island he landed on made Tuchanka look like a frigging vacation resort! The aliens placed animals on the island on three categories – dangerous, poisonous and sheep. I honestly had no idea what kind of monsters those 'sheep' were to deserve their own category, neither I wanted to find out. On top of that, most of the island was dessert. It sound nice on paper – 'land in a remote hard to access location to make counterattack hard for the aliens', but in reality that 'remote location' also made any ATTACKS hard for us. The aliens probably knew that by this point all they had to do was wait. Our forces would die out before reaching any inhabited area. That's assuming aliens didn't drop another bombshell on them.
There was still the dreadnought and the cruiser squadron in the orbit to consider. #4, the new commander, was... insane. I don't know what kind of thinking process he had to use to reach the conclusion he did, but the fact is, he ordered a full scale orbital-bombardment of the biggest city belonging to the tribe #2 tried to attack. Maybe he thought that the Council won't notice, maybe he was afraid to return in shame, maybe he had debt collectors back home calling for his head and winning this by any cost was the only way he could get the money? Sadly, #4 did not share his reasoning behind his decision. I'm sure it would be an interesting thing to read.
Anyway, the kinetic slugs were falling for over an hour and the city was turned into a pile of rubble. No matter what #4 wanted to do, the dreadnought and cruisers had to dump the excessive heat.
Now, I know that this idiot died. The fact that the dreadnought never returned was the dead give away of how it ends. The answer was apparently 'Tro'jh-an Horse'. The horse was some sort of alien draft animal and the Tro'jh was an ancient fictional city that the aliens conquered using one horse...
The answer was part of a lengthy document written by a your lieutenant trying to show off his skill in analyzing alien tactics. The horse wasn't an animal, it just looked like an animal. In reality, it was a structure built from the local fauna the aliens used to build stuff. I think he called it 'wood'. Then the aliens his inside the structure, the other aliens from Tro'jh brought that 'wood horse' into the city, where the first aliens jumped out of it and took over the city. What bothered me was that it was a very well known tactics among the aliens, so if everyone knew it, why did the aliens from Tro'jh fell for it? And why did no one questioned an animal looking object getting close and docking with the dreadnought? Could it be that this 'wood' has some sort of radar and heat absorbing properties?
If your invasion armada has a mothership, make sure it's indistinguishable from the rest of the fleet, doubly so if its destruction would disable your armed forces. And give it decent enough telecommunications to stay in orbit where it can't be taken out by a dozen grunts with assault rifles.
I continued the lecture and found out that the trick was much less alien as I suspected. The trick was quite simple, several shuttles left the planet heading towards the dreadnought. Officially their crews announced that the aliens were so scared that they fled allowing them to leave. It was obviously a ruse, but as such tactic was never used in our history, the operator had no reason to suspect anything. Only if that idiot lieutenant just written it rather than go on a lengthy explanation on alien cultural heritage. Well, I was an admiral now. I can punish that idiot for wasting my time on trivialities, let's see how you like suicide black operations, lieutenant Balak.
My revenge now complete, I went back to the reports.
If an older model scout ship that you lost contact with decades ago suddenly shows up in the middle of your invasion and wants to dock with your mothership, don't let it. Quarantine it and make sure that it's not the natives pulling some trick on you. In fact, just shoot it; even if it is the pilot that was shot down, they've probably either gone native or developed Stockholm Syndrome by now. Plus the guy was dumb enough to get shot down in the first place.
Three assault shuttles, each could carry about forty Batarians. Each filled with as many aliens as they could pack. Each alien was most likely one of the best each tribe assaulting the flagship had to offer. Each was equipped with stolen Batarian infantry armor, giving them shields on par with marines stationed on board of the dreadnought, the few who did not die with #1 that is.
The outcome was obvious. Most of the crew wasn't even armed, there was really no need for that, who in their right mind would try to board a dreadnought!? Any attacking force would be cut down by GARDIAN defenses or shatter over shields, unless all those were turned off to allow 'allies' to return...
Despite all this, #4 had balls. He had the best weapon and armor money could buy. Probably illegal import from Citadel space. Being the best (and probably, the last) armed person on board, he went after the alien assault team. He did manage to take out one of the teams, but the victory resulted in overconfidence, and the second team he ran into lured him into a trap. I don't know how many explosives they had, but what was left from #4 wouldn't fill a teaspoon. With his death, the remaining crew jumped over themselves to surrender faster.
When #4's death was confirmed, the invasion fleet (or rather, what was left of it) fell into disarray.
If it was a Turian fleet, the next person in the chain of command would take over and continue the mission. He would not have to worry about blunders committed by his predecessors.
If it was an Asari navy, the remaining captains would spend hours discussing what to do next, then they would retreat as reaching a consensus without a Matriarch telling them what to do is almost unheard of.
If it was a Salarian fleet the entire thing would never come to pass as Salarians are not foolish enough to fall for such tricks.
But it was a Batarian fleet. With only ship captains left, the chain of command was murky at best. It did not help that none of the captains wanted to take command, knowing very well that the returning commander (and they had to return, it was obvious at that point) would be blamed for the entire fiasco. We can't have 'respectable members of aristocracy' look like common fools, can we?
After several hours of throwing the command among each other, the captains finally reached a decision – flee the system and start a new mercenary group in the Terminus Systems. They probably grabbed as much data as they could and later on sold it to the Shadow Broker. Good thing I didn't have to buy it myself, I bet he charged through the nose for it.
That was pretty much it. The first attack ended in a complete and utter failure. The aliens had dozens of somewhat complete ships on the ground ready for capture, and a dreadnought in the skies. As several recordings from the boarding action showed, they also possessed passable skills in computer engineering, making me wonder how they could build advanced computers without element zero and other Mass Effect related technologies.
In an attempt to have some fun before reading about attempts number two and three, I decided to watch one of the diplomatic meetings that I had in the files. Our ambassadors are always good for laugh.
It was a rather standard meeting between the Batarian Ambassador and the Council. The three councilors stood on their platform and listened ambassador's tale about brave Batarian explorers looking for new planets to colonize, new resources to mine, new races to meet. When they finally meet one of such races, the Batarian hand of friendship was brutally rejected, the ambassador shoved the recording of the aliens attacking the dreadnought. How brutal they were, how the commanding officer died gloriously, trying to give his people time to self destruct the ship to keep it from the aliens.
Called it! I don't know if the idiot out there was aware of it, but self destruction a warship wasn't difficult. It was frigging impossible. Well, as impossible as Batarian engineers could make it. Even venting the atmosphere was not even remotely possible. No one wanted to serve on a ship that could be blown up by a simple virus, software error or worse, a rabid AI that somehow got into the system. Quarians learned about this the hard way, loosing most of their fleet in the very first day of the war because of the self destruction devices.
I continued to watch wondering about the reaction of the Council. It was known that the Council often gave Hegemony a lot of leeway. We were what stood between them and the Terminus Systems, so they turned a blind eye for various 'pirate' attacks. But whatever reaction the ambassador expected, this was not it. The Councilors started to laugh. It wasn't a polite diplomatic laugh, no, it was a full blown laughter. The Turian councilor was holding his stomach, his voice raging in the chambers. The Asari councilor was bent over the terminal, hitting it with her fist while laughing. The Salarian councilor was probably the worst, he was rolling on the floor laughing, almost dropping from the platform several times. The ambassador watched the entire situation dumbfounded, his mouth wide open. I joined him for a moment. The laughter lasted for almost five minutes. I could skip it, but the ambassador had to watch it the entire time, his expression turning from shock to anger.
"You are still here, ambassador?" Asked the Turian councilor. "Tevos, would you mind answering him? I do not think that I or Valern could do that without... interruptions." The councilor snickered.
"Of course." Councilor Tevos coughed to clear her throat. "Ambassador, do you think that we are stupid?" She asked with a nice diplomatic tone.
"No, councilor." Responded ambassador through his teeth.
"Maybe you think that we are blind?"
"Or that we are naïve?"
"Then why do you try to feed us this bullshit?" Tevos shouted from her position and pointed at the screen where the recording ended, the ambassador decided to remain silent. "You broke the laws regarding Relay activation not once, not twice, but three times. Then you establish a direct contact with a pre space age race, we have put laws regarding relay activation to avoid cases exactly like that. After that, rather than inform the Council and await a proper diplomatic team that would reduce the cultural contamination to the minimum, you proceeded to establish a diplomatic relations with them. If you do not know, it's ALSO against the Citadel Laws. Finally, your attempt at establishing diplomatic relations was an invasion. And yes, it IS against our laws to invade planets like that."
"Councilor, we did not invade the aliens, it was them who breached our warship defenses under false pretense of diplomatic meeting!" Ambassador hastily tried to explain.
"Ambassador, just a minute ago you said that you do not think that we are naïve, dumb or blind. How will you explain the race not possessing ME technology getting their hands on an advanced ME based Batarian assault shuttles?"
Ambassador watched the councilors, trying to find words to answer that.
"Do not think that another lie can convince us. Still, you are a signatory of Citadel Accords and providing some aid should be possible."
"Thank you, councilors. I will-" He did not finish as Tevos rose her hand to interrupt him.
"The aid is not free, ambassador. In exchange for military aid in a war against the newly discovered specie, the Batarian Hegemony will abolish slavery in it's territory. And do not try pulling off any tricks, the proper treaty will be worded in a way that will close any loopholes."
"The slavery is an integral part of our society!" Shouted the ambassador.
"Yes, yes. If I got a credit for every time I heard that bullshit, I would be able to buy another Destiny class Dreadnought for the Citadel fleet." Tevos waved the ambassador off, "Still, what is your answer? Military aid in exchange for abolishing slavery."
"The Hegemony rejects the proposition, councilors." Responded the ambassador.
"Very well, if that's all I think I need to see my physician about abdominal muscle pain. This meeting is adjourned." The councilors started to leave.
"Wait! You cannot do that! We have treaties, you are required to help us! If you refuse, no one in the galaxy will ever trust you!" Ambassador shouted with a smirk, thinking that he got an upper hand.
"We do? Tevos, didn't the ambassador just cancel Hegemony's status as an associated race?" Asked Spartus.
"I believe that ambassador did just that by refusing to obey one of the main parts of them. But I guess the ambassador wants it to be official."
"Very well. Will you do the honors, Tevos?"
"Of course." The councilors returned to their spots. "Ambassador, due to your refusal to follow the Citadel Convention and multiple violation of Citadel Laws the Council is forced to remove Batarian Hegemony from the Citadel and it's associated races. The decision is effective immediately. The Hegemony is allowed to keep a representative on the Citadel in hopes of repairing our relations in the future when Hegemony understand the mistakes it made and makes an effort to fix them." Councilors pressed several buttons on their consoles started to leave to their offices.
"You, you, you! It's outrageous! How dare you refuse us, your betters, help that we demanded from you!" Ambassador screamed in rage, all pretense of courtesy long forgotten.
Councilor Tevos looked at him, the polite face of a diplomat gone, replaced by the face of a Matriarch that fought in the Krogan Rebellions when she was a young maiden. "This is exactly the reason you did not get any help, ambassador. A word of caution, we did not give you any help, but we also did not aid the aliens you have attacked. If you continue with your insults, that state of affairs WILL change."
The recording ended.
If there's a stronger alien race out there that you're fleeing from because they are hunting you down for the planet-looting vermin that you are, finish your work quickly before they show up and recruit the natives to their side. Don't count on your Propaganda Machine working.
Nice, I whistled, so that's the reason the Council kicked us out, not the bullshit about 'not needing the primitive council races' sold to the masses by the Department of Information Control.
Kind of made sense, the Asari councilor had the job longer than the our ambassador was alive. Other, while younger, were no less able to hold their positions. No wonder they had played that idiot like a fiddle. The whole laugh was probably fake, done to enrage him to not think properly about his actions.
At that point my best guess was that even if the Hegemony agreed to abolish slavery, the Council already had a plan to win this without fighting. I mean, what would be the point of conquering the aliens if we abolished slavery? I suspect that the easiest way to deal with the conflict was sending loads of troops and ships, by doing that they could demand control over the operation as the main contributor. From that was a straight road to negotiating a peace treaty with the aliens. Which was fine by me, all commanders that fought those aliens ended up suffering a bad case of death. Shame the idiots in the Hegemon's Palace didn't agree with me.
Come to think of it, how were those aliens called? I should probably check that to at least know how they refer to themselves. Huh... hu-mons. Oh well, compared to Collectors or some other names from fiction, like Reapers or Leviathans, Hu-mons did not sound that bad.
The final reason for the defeat of the Batarian Extra-Relay Expedition was a misunderstanding of the Hu-mon technology level. Bataian commanders have assumed that Hu-mons were a pre-Mass Effect race as no traces of ME technology was discovered. That assumption proved to be wrong.
Hu-mons did not develop ME technology not because they lacked the ability, but because they lacked Element Zero. Dirt, Hu-mon homeworld, had absolutely no Eezo deposits. This forced Hu-mons to develop alternate technologies. Said technologies, while primitive, were more than a match for the Expedition forces.
The first example was Hu-mon assault rifle. The weapon used a primitive chemical agent to propel a slug at very low speed. Their main advantage that allowed them to defeat Batarian troops was rate of fire of over 600 slugs per minute.
Another example was Hu-mon missiles, a guided drone designed to self destruct when close to the target. The missiles were using primitive solid fuel boosters to reach it's target and then detonate chemical based explosive which would proper shards of metal in the direction of the target. While a single missile was no match for even Batarian shields, Hu-mons fired hundreds of them thus overwhelming the shield generators with sheer number of ordinance.
The final evidence of Hu-mon primitive nature was their use of nuclear weaponry within Garden World biosphere. The last race that decided to commit such barbaric acts were the Krogans and it resulted in nearly total destruction of the Krogan race.
Minor Races : Batarians
History : Batarian Extra-Relay Expeditions
Thank you for reaching this point, even if it's to leave 'your story sucks' review. Here are answers for some things you might wish to question in the review.
Why did Batarians act like idiots?
It was an expedition commanded by a bunch of aristocrats that could, at best, be described as 'armchair generals'.
How come Mass Effect technology lost against modern world technology?
They had the cheapest junk available. In other words – stuff that Jenkins wore on Eden Prime on Lvl 1. When modern day tech faced MK X stuff, it got slaughtered.
Second thing is physics. M-920 Cain, a weapon that can one shot almost everything on Insanity, has kinetic energy equal to two rounds from GAU-8 Avenger – a 30mm anti-tank weapon used on A-10 planes. As the story takes place in ME1 timeline, armor is non existent, so two or three missiles to take down a single Batarian fighter was more than enough.
How come SPACE FIGHTERS lost? They are SPACE FIGHTERS!
That's why they lost. They have aerodynamics of a brick (no air to worry in space), do not have any beyond visual range capability (no horizon to worry in space) and no counter measures to, well, counter human missiles. The primary anti-fighter weapon are GARDIAN batteries, and you can't dodge or fool lasers, so no one developed missiles or anti-missile countermeasures. Don't believe me? Replay planetary missions in ME1 where you had to dodge UNGUIDED rockets. For highly advanced space civilization, a bunch of Middle East rebels have better anti-tank weaponry than they.
How come Trojan Horse worked against the dreadnought?
How come it worked against Troj? Overconfidence, subterfuge, stupidity, take your pick.
What's with the Codex entry?
Due to certain events that weren't mentioned, humans never made contact with the Citadel. Thanks to that, the Asari responsible for writing the Codex entry had to base it around very little amount of data. Even less than the nameless narrator of this story. Due to this, they were faced with the problem of explaining defeat. They could either say that some backward race managed to defeat Batarians with superior non-Mass Effect based technology, or say that Batarians had shitty technology and the primitive aliens simply swarmed them with numbers. Guess which one Asari choose.
Why this story sucks?
Nobody is stopping you from writing a better one. In fact, I would gladly read a good Mass Effect AU where the author doesn't glorify ME tech just because it's new and shiny. Also, I'm not a professional writer, so expecting the quality that can be seen among stories written by those is quite silly, don't you think?