Romulus blowing up is canon - maybe the last canon event to be established about the classic timeline (constructed in Ent, TOS, TNG, DS9, VOY).
There's no chance trek lit will change this. Definitely not by positing that the timeline presented in the trek lit relaunches is not the one from star trek XI.
Martin's The Needs of the Many
, which ties into the new movie (Hobus goes supernova, Nero goes on a rampage, Spock goes back in time) is set in an explicitly different timeline, one that includes most elements in common with the novelverse except for the the Borg attacks maybe from Resistance
onward. In the MMORPG's 24th century, well after 2381, any number of places and characters destroyed by the Borg--Admiral Paris, Janeway, Pluto and its moons, Deneva, Risa--are perfectly fine. Bacco even tells Sisko in her interview that she didn't know how the Federation would have handled a Borg attack soon after the Dominion War, but she thought the Federation would have survived. "Somehow."
The new movie is set six years after the huge point of divergence introduced by the Borg attacks of 2380-2381. In Needs of the Many
, Janeway says that the unusual characteristics of the Hobus supernova (a star light-years away vapourizing a planet so soon after it goes?) makes it a likely candidate for artificial supernova, probably as a side-effect of the subspace weapons tests made by Sela's faction but maybe by Species 8472. In a timeline that's had at least six years to diverge hugely, it's very possible that those weapons tests wouldn't have been made, Hobus would remain intact, and Romulus and Remus would have survived.
This is consistent with their psychology. Also, any weapon tends to be effective against the borg during the first shots - in the case of metaweapons, this would translate into a lot of borg cubes destroyed.
There's something to be said for using superpowered weapons against superpowered opponents.
The debris left over in Romulus space from the side-effects of these metaweapons would complicate things. Probably the Romulans would have thought that, if a particular world was doomed anyway, it would be best to take as many Borg as possible with them, so some planetary systems might be physically
destroyed. And who knows what the extensive use of subspace metaweapons would do.
About the romulans having better military tech than the federation/klingons - that's rather unsupportable.
During DS9's dominion war, the romulan performance was nothing to write home about:
During all seen battles, their ships proved to be, at most, at the allies' tech level; no superior anything.
The dominion, even strained as it was by the federation/klingons, managed to keep the 'fresh' romulan military out of cardassian territory, losing only a few recently conquered systems (at most - only one such system is established) before the front line stabilised. During the final battle for Cardassia, the romulan flank broke way before the federation or klingon one.
A highly unimpressive performance, overall.
Point. There's some evidence--speculative evidence--to suggest that some areas of Romulan military technology might have been pulling ahead. Countdown 3
shows that Nero got his weapons suites from a secret Romulan facility, the Vault (not the Forge), which had managed to reverse-engineer Borg technology. Installed on the ]Narada
, this technology was able to pose a critical threat to Federation planets and destroyed a small Klingon fleet sent to intercept it in the 24th century. Romulan and Borg technology were probably compatible anyway, as evidenced by their design preferences for glowing green running lights ... ;-)
Agreed that this technology wasn't installed (or at least used) in the 2370s. By the 2380s, even without the ]Narada
-class technology deployed in 2387, the Vault's research may have led to some interesting results which, with the metaweapons, cold also have slowed down the Borg. May have.