So, Von Neumann probe from the galaxy Andromeda is invading the Milky Way, and most species are getting their asses handed to them. A few planets have already come under the invaders control, and the United Terran Federation and Qualian Star Empire have teamed up to try and stop them from coming any closer to the inner galaxy. The great Qualian imperial armada and the entire UTF navy has set up blockades around the controlled planets, and have stationed men on planetary based. Which brings up a question. What advantages would a reptilian species like the Qualihas have over humans in battle?

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    $\begingroup$ In what kind of battles? You are talking about the very distant future here, so I'm assuming there is not much hand-to-hand combat, is there? How is any battle not completely automated? Are you asking how Reptilians would have an advantage over humans in designing e.g. killer robots? $\endgroup$ – Raditz_35 May 24 '18 at 11:47
  • $\begingroup$ Define your scenario and the capabilities of your aliens. A lizard and a T-Rex are both reptiles, but one has the advantage of crawling onto walls, the other not. $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch - Reinstate Monica May 24 '18 at 11:47
  • $\begingroup$ L.Dutch: They are humanoid Gila Monsters, that are intelligent $\endgroup$ – DT Cooper May 24 '18 at 11:52
  • $\begingroup$ @Raditz_35: No, they still fight with real people, with guns and bombs and grenades. No killer robots $\endgroup$ – DT Cooper May 24 '18 at 11:54
  • $\begingroup$ And by that you mean what exactly? Are we assuming the lizard people have the same equipment as say the contemporary US army? Are they fighting the same kind of war that people have been fighting for the last say max 20 years? The way wars are conducted and what a battlefield looks like changes basically with every war and so would the advantages/disadvantages. Where would they fight? $\endgroup$ – Raditz_35 May 24 '18 at 11:58

There is little defence against von neumann probes.

A von neumann probe is most likely a machine - able to replicate itself when arriving at a star system to then replicate itself further, to pass on to other neighbouring star systems.

Multiplication is the key here - as once von neumann probes start producing themselves - it's very hard to stop them. Much like weeding grass, eliminating the exposed grass is only a small part of a much larger root system well established long before you started weeding.

Faced against such an adversary it would be difficult to think of a defence - other than that of finding a weakness to which they are susceptible (and since they are replicas, potentially a universal one) or creating probes of your own to battle them.

It matters little in the cosmic scale whether you're reptilian or mammalian, as most matters had already likely been decided before you were engaged.


Reptiles would do well against humans in a siege

Failing a military outcome, sieges can often be decided by starvation, thirst, or disease, which can afflict either the attacker or defender. This form of siege, though, can take many months or even years, depending upon the size of the stores of food the fortified position holds.

Reptiles would do well against humans in this sort of endurance contest. Reptiles can power down their metabolisms in a way unavailable to mammals. They require less calories and less water, and maybe less fuel for heating if they are ok with torpor. The army laying siege often suffers disease and shortages comparable to that in the city -= in his Apologie Ambroise Pare describes leaving the city he had been in after the besiegers left, and finding starving, dying men who had been abandoned by the besiegers as they left in disarray. On the inside or the outside of a siege, reptiles have an advantage.


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