|For the disambiguation page on this lore article, see Dreadnaught.|
The Dreadnaught are the heaviest, most expensive, and best armed warships in any typical fleet. Designed as the final word in warship power, with weapon systems capable of tearing apart anything from scouts to battlecruisers, and enough armor to survive all but the heaviest enemy bombardment, they are a valuable—if expensive—addition to any fleet, and often serve as flagships in lieu of a Mothership or Carrier. The price of building one of these behemoths is, however, the highest of any non-Mothership vessel, and as such they are rarely deployed without numerous escorts, regardless of their impressive arsenal.
The history of dreadnaughts can be traced back to the Progenitors. The Progenitors built massive ships of such nature to serve as the Gatekeeper of Sajuuk, which could be used to activate Balcora Gate and reach Sajuuk itself. During the Second Homeworld War, Makaan and Karan S'jet each had one of these ships in their possession. Makaan's was destroyed in the penultimate battle at Balcora, while the fate of the Hiigaran dreadnought is unknown (though it likely still serves in the Hiigaran Navy). Though ships are technically not intended for combat, the sheer power of progenitor weaponry and armor leaves these vessels more than equivalent to what most races would call a dreadnaught.
Twilight of DreadnaughtsEdit
As time passed, the popularity of dreadnaughts faltered as the various races realized that the time and resources spent manufacturing these monsters could be put to better use building large numbers of cheaper units, such as Cruisers and Destroyers. Another body blow to the dreadnaughts was the advent of the mothership class vessel. Motherships proved better at the Flagship role, as they could serve as mobile shipyards and resource bases, though at the cost of firepower.
Dreadnaughts enjoyed a brief resurgence during the Beast War, when Kiith Somtaaw designed and manufactured the Archangel-class Dreadnought as a counter to the Beast's version of the Heavy Cruiser. The Archangel performed with great success, and served with the Somtaaw Navy for many years afterward. It is worth mentioning, however, that in comparison to vessels such as the Gatekeepers, the Archangel is much more akin to an advanced heavy cruiser.
Dreadnaught class vessels were finally shelved during the Vaygr War with the advent of a new series of highly adaptable battlecruisers which combined firepower, survivability, and flexibility at an economical cost, essentially replacing the role of old dreadnaughts. Regardless, the use of the Gatekeepers proved that dreadnaught-style ships were still a viable strategic option, even if they were not actively being developed.