The final episode of Voyager's third season, "Scorpion" (airdate May 21, 1997) contains this line:

TUVOK: Starfleet has encountered species that use organic-based vessels. The Breen, for example.

yet the Breen played heavily in the final season of Star Trek: DS9 (starting Sep 30, 1998).

Was there ever any evidence in DS9 of organic Breen vessels?

or was this just a throwaway line before the Breen plotline was developed?

  • Is there anything to indicate that the Breen ships we saw in DS9 had no organic components? I'm not sure I fully comprehend the premise of this question. – Lightness Races with Monica Feb 28 '16 at 23:08
  • @PreferenceBean, I don't see the problem. Breen vessels appear like other vessels in the sense that there's nothing to indicate to the audience that they have organic components. Plus the phrase 'organic-based vessels' seems to imply that the writer of that line intended the vessels to be entirely organic. There could be evidence, there could be no evidence, of organics or of no organics. That's the question. You're just rhetorically asking one aspect of it as if it undermines the original question. But it doesn't. – ThePopMachine Feb 29 '16 at 15:28
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    I'm the one who can't see the problem! Okay, so your premise is that if Breen ships were organic, they wouldn't look as they do. Can you provide any evidence for that claim? How would you like organic ships to look? Furthermore, I don't think "organic-based" means "entirely organic". I think it means "organic-based". – Lightness Races with Monica Feb 29 '16 at 15:36
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    Side-comment: Wouldn't Voyager's bio-neural gelpacks be considered organic-based technology? Yet by all appearances Voyager doesn't look at all organic. – Brandon Dybala Mar 7 '16 at 18:11
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    @BrandonDybala and Barry -- The context of Tuvok's comment is about the (fully) biological vessels used by Species 8472. It doesn't make sense to permissively mince words over what 'organic-based' means in this context. You are trying to justify the line, and I'm just asking what the evidence is either way. You are setting up a conflict where none exists. – ThePopMachine Mar 7 '16 at 18:18

Not in canon

The only reference I can find to the Breen's organic-based ships is in Tuvok's line in VOY 'Scorpion'. However, out of canon, we see that there is further explanation (emphasis mine):

Their technology consisted of an element of biotechnology that as based on the algae on their homeworld. The Breen learnt to manipulate the algae genetic structure and use it to create biomaterials with special properties such as metal, plastic, silicon as well as other such substances. Such a key trait meant that every Breen vessel included its own hydroponics bay where damage components could be regrown. (TNG module: Star Trek: The Next Generation Core Game Book)


However, in terms of canon, then yes, this does seem to be a throwaway line before the Breen were properly explored in the ending arc of DS9 which aired after 'Scorpion' (which first aired in 1996).

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    There's the fact that Breen are seemingly invulnerable to Federation phasers but super-weak against disruptors. That might indicate. ..erm... something. – Valorum Feb 29 '16 at 11:07

It seems to me that because of who owned what production rights to what at the time of filming. ST:Discovery is racked with problems die to Paramount owning such key points of Canon, which made the making of Season 8 of DS9, hence why they made a documentary as opposed to season 8. Then you combine that with a throwaway line and a scant basis of Breen Tech Tree. The ST: Online has Been Ships that have organic parts as part of their special sets.

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    The last line is relevant, the rest isn't. Might want to consider removing everything else – Valorum Jun 23 '19 at 9:26
  • Not sure that STO can be considered as Canon. – Sava Jun 23 '19 at 11:35
  • @Sava - It's a licensed property at least, and worth of a mention if sufficient detail is provided – Valorum Jun 23 '19 at 12:39
  • @Valorum I played it, as far as I remember, all they say is that Breens have biological ships, without explaining further. – Sava Jun 24 '19 at 10:43

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