In the DS9 episode Jem'Hadar, the Odyssey's crew tries to modulate their shield frequency to compensate for the positronic weapons. It fails, but that still implies that the technique of adjusting shields to counter energy weapons isn't some Borg-specific asset, and also isn't full-proof.
I wonder, could a Borg Cube survive a suicide run by a Star Destroyer? Worst comes to worst, I don't think the Empire is above that.
“Where the longleaf pines are whispering
to him who loved them so.
Where the faint murmurs now dwindling
echo o’er tide and shore."
-A Grave Epitaph in Santa Rosa County, Florida; I wish I could remember the man's name.
I think the ramming tactic depends on velocity and whether the shields are up. There was an episode where a ship travelling at impulse (c) bounced off the Enterprise's shields. IIRC, it was the episode where they went to a planet that had a decommissioned army of super soldiers that were kept in a penal colony and one of the soldiers escaped and stole a shuttle with which he performed the maneuver (The Hunted).
- Hypermatter annihilator: This technology provides magnitudes more power than the antimatter reactors in Star Trek.
- Hyperdrive is almost as flexible as warp, (allowing ships to jump without outer help and almost everywhere.) but almost as fast as transwarp. (crossing the galaxy in some days) And it looks like, there is no hypermatter without hyperdrive. (Wookiepedia)
- Since the GE controls almost the entire galaxy, it has significantly more resources than the Borg, only possessing the 1/8 of the Milky Way. (Asuming roughly same density of habitable planets and strategic materials.)
But the Borg wins in almost every other field:
- Transporter technology
- Adaptability and technological flexibility
- Morale: the Borg has no moral in conventional sense, but the Borg drones, controlled by the hive mind, would willingly sacrifice themselves for the Collective, while we see that Stormtroopers surrender against the primitive ewoks and Han Solo in Battle of Endor. The Empire is confident with its galactic hegemony, showing no interest in extragalactic expansion, leaving for the Borg, pursuing the perfection endlessly, to discover them, and choose the time and place to fight.
- Modular and decentralized vessels: GE ships appear to have Achilles heels, (Thermal exhaust port on Death Star, Shield domes, bridge and hangar on ISD-s) while a Borg Cube can continue fighting even if 78% of its structure gets destroyed (Memory Alpha)
- Sensor and cloaking technology: The Imperial sensors are primitive: The Millenium Falcon could hide on the hull of a Star Destroyer in SW V, and the Death Star couldn't detect it and warn it's fighters at Yavin. They also appeared to have no environment scanners on their shield projection base on the Endor, but was assaulted by the ewoks, and foolishly run into the trap.
So my scenario looks like this: The Borg constructs an transwarp conduit somewhere hidden in the Outer Rim, and sends probes to investigate the galaxy. Some probes encounter Imperial Navy vessels, but quickly self-destruct. After some months on research, the Borg choose a poorly defended, insignificant planet, and assimilate it with three cubes. Let's say it's defended by a small garnizon, and an outdated Victory-class destroyer. If they can beam through it's shields, the battle wont last long, but even if not, and the SD's turbolasers deal heavy damage to the cubes, they adapt their shields to minimalize damage, and destroy the bridge using the old combination of shield-draining beam and cutting beam. Then they tractor in the escape pods and the civilian vessels of the planet, and assimilate everybody, who they can. (It's possible that, some species are immune to assimilation, both the most humanoids (including the humans, making the majority of the Imperial military) can be easily assimilated.) Then they destroy all the clues and retreat into our galaxy.
Having ships in its hands, and some engineers in its collective mind, the Borg assimilates all the captured technology, constructing Hypercubes fitted with hyperdrive and hypermatter reactor. Then in a couple of years they conquer the entire Milky Way. They can attack the Earth (and all key Federation, Klingon, Romulan... planets) with hyperdrives, assimilating them, before the Starfleet ships learn about the attack and sprint home, rendering Starfleet to Rebel-like outlaws roaming space homelessly, and slowly dying without personal and material supplies. With this, the Collective had compensated all the three main advantage of the Empire, which is still unavare of the Borgs presence. And how knows, may they could get some thransphasic torpedoes and ablative armor on the Earth
Its highly likely, that on the first assimilated planet, the Borg had found some Force-sensitive people. There are many possibilities:
- Force makes immune to nanoprobes. Best for the Empire, allowing only macrosurgical assimilation, but the Borg still learned about the Force.
- The Borg can develop some Nanotechnology or bioweapon, rendering Midi-chlorians useless.
- They can propagate Midi-chlorains, making all the drones Force sensitive. (Worst for the Empire)
After that they can launch their attack to Corusant, Kuat, and all the Empire, saying 'resistance is futile'. While the most of Imperial weapons (from blaster pistols to turbolasers) don't have settings and modulations, the Borg can quickly adapt their shielding to them, and annihilate or assimilate everything they find.
Possibly, the Borg assimilates an Imperial Officer, knowing about the Death Star, and they can send back an captured ISD with it's original (but inflected) crew, to get it, but even if not, and they run into it, and the superlaser vaporizes several cubes, they have solutions:
- Kamikaze attack with a cube on hyperdrive or warp 9.99
- leaving Subspace on the shortest safe distance, on the oposite side of the station, than the superlaser emitter, and landing on the surface, before DS could roll and use it's main weapon. Then they can cut the hull, and send hundreds of thousands of drones to assimilate the crew.
- One gramm red matter from assimilated vulcan scientist.
The Empire utterly crushes any civilization in Star Trek short of entity-like outliers.
1. It contains a monstrous industry of a million systems and as many as fifty million colonies that allows it to construct a 900 km diameter Death Star to half completion in about a year, in the outer rim, in secret.
2. Its hyperdrives allow it to strike with fleets at will anywhere in the galaxy within hours.
3. The firepower and shielding ratings of imperial weaponry are orders of magnitude beyond those of the Borg; there are a host of independent methodologies to come to this conclusion, but I'd just point to Saxton's ICS's and Leeland Chee's endorsement of them as the first place he'd look to for firepower figures.
4. In addition to the Death Star - and I'm not sure what the Borg's response is supposed to be - the Empire (we're presumably using Legends given the OP's date) has several superweapons being developed in the maw such as the sun crusher and galaxy gun, which would be entirely out of context problems for the Borg.
5. Palpatine himself has the ability to conjure Force storms from across the galaxy that can tear the surfaces off of worlds.
Yeah, the Borg could get the entire Alpha Quadrant and the Dominion, and it wouldn't make a damn of a difference.
Going by Legends canon an Imperial Star Destroyer mark 2 has a power output of 9.28e+24 watts of power. This translates to 2,218 teratons of tnt per second. To give an idea how powerful that is, the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs was 100 teratons of tnt. Of course, this is from the core of the ship meaning the energy is distributed throughout the ISD.
We don't know how much of that energy goes to the weapons and shields, but we have a way to figure it out. The Acclamator Star Destroyer has ratings for both shields and weapons along with its reactor. 2e+23 for reactor, 7e+22 watts for its shields, and 200 gigatons of tnt per shot for each of its quad turbolasers.
Using the correlation of the Acclamators reactor/shields/weapons for an ISD 2 gives the following
Reactor: 9.28e+24 watts or 2,218 teratons of tnt per second
Shields: 3.24800e+24 watts or 776 teratons of tnt per second
Weapons: 9.28 teratons of tnt per shot for whatever weapons is equivalent to a quad turbolaser cannon on an ISD.
Now are these numbers consistent to Legends? Yes, they are. In Star Wars, there is a military code called Base Delta Zero which is basically an.order for a capital ship to bomb a planet until it's uninhabitable. These bombings are so intense they melt the upper crust of a planet. It only takes three Star Destroyers in several hours to complete a BDZ.
To melt the crust of a planet according to Atomic Rockets takrs 7 Exatons of tnt which translates to 7 million teratons. There are 3600 seconds in an hour. A turbolaser with a yield of 9.28 teratons per shot shooting every second for an hour would have unleashed 33,408 Teratons. Keep in mind it's the upper crust though im not sure what constitutes as upper crust, but even if it's only 1% that a BDZ melts that's still 70,000 teratons of tnt to melt just 1%
There is also the bombing of Dankayo, which 3 Star destroyers bombed a planet so severely it atomized its top soil, left the surface evenly cratered, and blasted off the planets atmosphere. To blast off a planets atmosphere requires 77,000 teratons of TNT according to Atomic rockets. Note Dankayo was in the Colonies region of the galaxy, which is filled with planets that have cities that cover their entire planets.
There are also statements saying that a single Imperial Star Destroyer can turn a planetary surface to molten slag and turn a civilized worlds surface to smoking debris.
Finally, an Imperial Star Destroyer is powerful enough to install a Superlaser on it and power it. The Superlaser is the same weapon that the Death Stars use to blow up planets, of course one on an Imperial Star Destroyer is much weaker but still powerful. It is capable of breaking apart small Moons that are around 200 kilometers in diameter and crack a continent in half in one shot. There's even a drawing of it shooting a planet with the blast being massive. https://imgur.com/a/jRRF89t
A single Imp Star 2 is a powerful battleship, not only boasting tremondous firepower and durability but ranges that span dozens of millions of kilometers as well and boasting squadrons of fighters that can kill Capital Ships from the Star Wars Galaxy. And the Empire has 25,000 of these ships with millions of other vessels.
__________________ "Vader's pulse and breathing were machine-regulated, so they could not quicken; but something in his chest became more electric around his meetings with the Emperor; he could not say how. A feeling of fullness, of power, of dark and demon mastery -- of secret lusts, unrestrained passion, wild submission -- all these things were in Vader's heart as he neared his Emperor. These things and more."