Quote Originally Posted by 18-Till-I-Die View Post
I didn't have time to respond to every comment for a while here, so I'll just kind of throw my opinion there:

In the setting I'm working with one of the major ideas is that there are numerous types both relativistic and FTL drive. It's mainly in the background, but it can also directly effect both the plot and the militaries of various nations. The example I would give is, imagine that your entire civilization uses something akin to a wormhole network (like man-made versions of the DS9 wormhole) as a primary means of faster-than-light travel, and then you have to invade a neighboring power who have their own FTL network (akin to the Supergates from Stargate) but have no wormholes. They don't need them, since they don't use smaller wormholes for communications, they have a different method, and they have their jump gates so why would they ever develop them? That means to even get to them you need a separate FTL drive, ship-based, and likewise they need one too to retaliate. Now imagine also the huge disparity in speed, where your FTL drive may be hugely slower but longer ranges while theirs is faster but only over short regions.

So all military ships, and most commercial or merchant ships, have at least one FTL drive and the capacity to use one or more "network" of "fixed" FTL systems. Unless they want to use pure relativistic travel, which is entirely within reason but extremely slow, by comparison. And given the differences between the races, factions, nations, etc this expands considerably. It all kind of happens in the background, but it means going to different regions has different effects on travel time and range. Like in ancient times, some regions had actual traversable roads, and some regions depended on caravans traveling across trackless deserts, and some were dependent on fleets of ships as they were islands, etc.
I like this. It's a nice way of world building, and in many ways, realistic. Especially if many of the races are in competition or at war; they're not sharing. Of course, the execution of the idea will be important -- background stuff that will affect plot at some point. But I like the idea that there would be different technologies based on needs, allies, culture, geography, and heck, maybe even religion/belief systems. I think FTL has been seen as like cars or airplanes. At some point, everybody gets the same kind of car and airplane. But realistically, I think FTL systems would be much bigger, more akin to infrastructure. Countries in real life have different infrastructures. Some good, some not so good.