Fireflair wrote:System defense with LACs is a great idea and now the norm for most GA systems. I'm not sure what plan they have for the LAC deployment though. There have a been a couple of different bits of textev that show different deployment options. I don't think that a dispersed plan is the way to go. LACs were best in a swarm, because a an attacking force can't cover every angle and that opens them up to multiple vulnerable shots by the LACs, too many to protect from. If you disperse the LACs, unless you have incredible numbers of them, than you're inviting defeat for each small group by an opponent who's willing to come wading into them, or brings missiles.
To avoid defeat in detail you'd need to keep your strength relatively close together so they could be mutually supporting. I'd imagine several LAC bases, but all within relatively close proximity to each other, just as whatever they would be protecting would be relatively close. I would not want my LACs penny packeted out around the star system in the asteroid belt or Ort cloud just to have forces covering everything. Sorry, but the smelters in the belts are expendable. Having my LACs lack the strength to really be effective because of dispersion is not acceptable.
We know at some of the allied home systems Manticore used a combination of in-system (presumably near planets) and out-system (near or beyond the hyper limit) LAC bases.
I'm not sure exactly why but I could make a couple guesses. Having relatively hidden out-system bases could help you actually capture or kill raiders or scouts -- they get chased away by the LAC swarm forming up in-system and run right into an ambush on the way out. If it doesn't happen too often it can get chalked up to happenstance or running across a patrol flight - without giving away the actual basing of LACs out system.
The other thing it could be very useful for is if you were anticipating fighting an enemy who was towing heavy pods (either because they didn't have podlayers or because they were pre-rolling for an alpha strike) - then you might again use the in-system LACs or ships to fix the enemy's focus and use LACs sneaking up from behind to attempt to first strike those exposed pods; replicating the opening of 2nd Hancock.
But those system were important enough politically to be provided with incredible numbers of LACs supplemented by shoals of system defense missile pods. Most people likely won't be able to quickly acquire or man defenses of that magnitude.