Arshan Fleet Commander
A command tier 5 title within the Arshanov Federation's military, Fleet Commanders hold command of a full fleet of ships. These commanders receive their instructions directly from Force Command and are the highest-ranking Delta personnel deployed in the front lines. While primarily a title used by Delta, Alfa also fields a number of Fleet Commanders throughout their relatively smaller naval force. This is a highly coveted title within Delta as the highest commanding role 'in the field' with absolute authority, yet difficult to acquire due to the limited number of fleets available to command.
As a tier 5 (Colonel) profession, natural progression to the title of Fleet Commander typically involves a lengthy career through at-space professions at tiers 2 (Sergeant), 3 (Lieutenant), and 4 (Major), in that order. In most cases, this manifests as a military record showing prior assignments as a Shift Lead or Division Officer, and Ship Commander before finally being selected for 'promotion' to a Fleet Commander role. The requirements for such a promotion include a minimum 4 years service as a Ship Commander, a letter of recommendation from the promotee's current Fleet Commander, and an opening for a new Fleet Commander within the military. The barrier to promotion typically lies in the third requirement as the Federation does not have an infinite number of ships and fleets.
Arshans whom attend the Navosian Officer's Academy and graduate the Ship & Fleet Command courses are able to skip the first two tiers of the Promotion path toward the Fleet Commander title. Such persons serve a mandatory one-year cadetship aboard a ship as a bridge support role, with the rank of Cadet Major (4-0) as part of the course. Graduation of this course requires a letter of recommendation from the cadet's Ship Commander and passing scores on the logical and practical tests, with the full course requiring three to four years to complete. Graduates of the course are assigned the seniority of Junior (1) and assigned to bridge support roles, with exemplary cadets being offered Ship Sub-Commander of non-combat ships. Promotion to Fleet Commander from here holds the same requirements as listed above.
The primary role of a Fleet Commander is to manage and distribute orders down to the fleets under their command. Most commanders are given free reign to operate within their designated theatres by Squadron Command with absolute authority, and are expected to work alongside other high-level commanders to accomplish whatever primary objectives have been set forth for their region. Fleet Commanders are also placed in charge of non-combat fleets, typically in the form of logistics or dedicated training fleets for Academy cadets. All ships within a fleet answer solely to the Fleet Commander while underway or in a combat scenario.
Short, sweet and to the point - as usual you do some clean work here.
The carreer part got me thinking about all the possible paths to this tier 4 profession. Maybe some kind of visualization could help illustrate these options better / further.
You describe how you can ascend to this rank and who they can command - but what are their primary duties or functions within the command structure - aside from passing on orders? What makes it so coveted? Only the small number of positions?
I've been meaning to get charts worked out for these ranking structures and such, I just haven't found a decent method/program for making them that I like yet. Have any suggestions?
Definitely a good idea to better paint a picture of who they're in charge of and how they're in charge. As for their duties.. They have full authority over the fleet. As far as any other member of that fleet is concerned, the Fleet Commander is the supreme authority when underway or in a combat situation - The top brass delegates down to the Fleet Commander, the Fleet Commander takes those orders, decides how to execute them with the ships he has available, and gets the ball rolling. It's so highly sought after within Delta because it's the highest level of authority that's still 'In the field' as it were, and gains probably the most recognition of all command positions in Delta Squadron.
Short, but gets the point across. Also a very neatly arranged article. Nice!
Did it leave you with any questions or wondering about any particular aspects?
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Not really. The article is really well written and gathers the information succinctly and in an easy to read form. The only thing that I start wondering about is the rest of the world, but that's kind of the whole point, isn't it? The content of the article itself explains itself so well that there are no question marks. It can perhaps be a bit dry, particularly the academy section, but other than that I think it's a solid article that gives a good overview of the function of the Fleet commander.
I like this article: very to the point about things. However, on the topic of ranks, you seem to have Shift Lead, Deck Lead, Ship Commander, and Fleet Commander. However, a) what about the foot soldiers on the ground working and b) that's awfully few ranks. If the ship commander is KIA, which deck lead do they choose (same for fleet)? Is there a specific commander designated Lieutenant who will assume duties in case the commander falls? Overall great.
Those roles are only for specific promotion paths - If anything ever happens to a commander, for every commander there's a 'sub-commander' that serves as the second in command. From there, for the Fleet Commander at least, command of the fleet shifts to highest seniority ship commander that's available. If there's ever a situation where all the fleet and ship commanders are gone, that's prooobably a situation where chain of command no longer matters.
Thinking about this actually, I should probably add in a bit describing the chain of command better and where the fleet commanders sit within it