A battleship is a naval vessel that is characterized by large guns and thick armor. Historically, battleships were the undisputed kings and queens of the ocean; for a period of time between the 15th century and 20th century they were the standard by which a nations naval power was measured. In the mid 20th century the were superseded by aircraft carriers, which possessed a greater range than the battleship. The advent of air power coupled with the development of missiles and later precision guided munitions effectively eclipsed the battleship, and almost all of the worlds battleship fleets have since been retired.
In their day battleships were treated as the flagship of a fleet, with a screen of cruisers and destroyers built around such ships to protect them. Frequently battleships would include flag quarters for Admirals who were assigned to the ship. Battleships also had the largest array of anti-aircraft weaponry for any ship ever put afloat; on some battleship the number of anti-aircraft guns numbered well past 100. Although designed to engage and destroy enemy ships, battleships could also provide cover fire for amphibious landings and could serve as anti-aircraft screens for ships with little or no anti-aircraft weapons.
Battleships in the Gundam universe can be split into two categories: those that rely only on their guns and those that were built or modified to carry mobile suits. Those that rely only their guns tend to sail in company with other ships for protection against enemy mobile suits, much like the Allies of World War II would sail their merchant ships across the Atlantic in packs to help minimize the threat of a German U-boat attack. Battleships that have MS hangers usually have fewer guns, and rely on their own mobile suits for protection against enemy MS. Occasionally these ships are assigned Gundam Pilots or other notable pilots, and can become a focal point of a story.
List of Battleships of the Gundam Series
Earth Federation/Londo Bell/AEUG
- Dogosse Giar-class
- Ra Cailum-class