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The home planet of a race is completely annihilated (hit by another planet or something), but they managed to launch a generation ship beforehand, and a few thousand people go on a century-long trip to another habitable planet.

Now, there is a bad guy, some kind of time lord. He has the power to reset a certain area of space - and everything in it - to a former instance.

Now, for whatever reason, the bad guy chooses to repeatedly reset the ship and crew to a former time (a day? a month?), which basically means the ship is set back millions of km and will never reaches its destination. The crew does not notice the time loop, as their brains are reset with the rest of the ship. (lets ignore the fact that there may still be ways for them to find out otherwise.)

So, here is the question. What motives are there for the bad guy that he could not achieve by simply destroying the generation ship?

Excited to hear your ideas :)

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closed as off-topic by anon, StephenG, Azuaron, sphennings, Mołot Nov 13 '17 at 15:03

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

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    $\begingroup$ Off-topic/ too broad / opinion based - this SE is for defining fictitious rules and conditions of worlds not the interactions between characters $\endgroup$ – anon Nov 13 '17 at 13:51
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for this information, and for the answers so far, much appreciated! I understand that this question leans in the direction of "write part of my story for me" and this is not what this forum is about. $\endgroup$ – user2118985 Nov 13 '17 at 15:40
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Depending on your story, you could have a plot twist where the "bad guy" is actually a good guy and the place they are trying to reach is actually jeopardized in some way. Hostile aliens, space anomalies etc. Perhaps the place they want to go doesn't actually exist and until a habitable good place is discovered, the ship needs to just be on standby without people onboard knowing it's on standby. You know, morale, hope and all that good stuff.

But more in context with your request, maybe he needs time to prepare something where they are going? Perhaps he wants to enslave the generation ship's passengers but needs time to set up a "welcoming party" for them.

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Perhaps the technology that he uses works both ways. In other words, he wants to jump forward in time or advance his people and the only way it works is by slowing/reversing time in another part of the galaxy.

Supposing by this logic, empty space wouldn't work because it'd be like drawing heat from an ice cube, in other words he must draw it from those experiencing time themselves.

So his "attack" on the ship is more of a side-effect of his own greediness, and not so much malevalence on the ship itself.

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I Like Neil's explanation, but would take it in a slightly different direction.

The antagonist could very well be in the same timeloop, but is fully aware of the repeating process, maybe in a "Groundhog day" type of way.

This could be for instance because the Antagonist wants to fix a mistake he/she made.

Or it could be to gain an advantage over the people on the ship by creating a technology which takes lots of experimenting.

Or even by some way the antagonist can do things over and over again, but influence things outside of the bubble, for instance creating massive amounts of energy over and over, but storing it in a "battery" outside the bubble.

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The classic: Hubris

bad guy is just so amazingly powerful and feels he needs to demonstrate as much power as possible every moment. This is completely unbeleiveable. There an no powerful people who feel the need to use their power when they don't have to

More basic: Habit

bad guy is used to long term thinking and so never destroys anything that might possibly of some use latter. if fact there are many things hanging around in loops that have been forgotten about and never thrown away.

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