Getting a little grumpy there Timo? "Anti-submarine" weapons: Easily explained...an early form of pulse phasers (ala the Defiant from DS9) that proved to be less effective than the beam style phasers that came later. In TNG era, the pulse phaser concept was perfected and reused. Thats an easy one. Fictional limitations of the hero ship: What were those Timo? Romulan setup: How is the Romulan setup significantly different than later episodes of TOS? The ships were changed, but it isn't a stretch to believe that a star faring civilization would have a variety of starships. Nor is it a stretch to believe that the Roms would buy starships from the Klingons. Straight shoot’em up plot: I would disagree that the plot is nothing but combat. The central theme to me isn't senseless violence but rather the Romulan warrior society, racism, and holding grudges from years past...the combat to me is incidental to the message. In college, in an essay about the concept of duty, I used a line of dialouge from this episode. And even if it was just about combat, given the idea that the Federation has hostile neighbors, it is not at all contrary to TOS storytelling (or the grander arc that is Star Trek as you put it), to believe that such a neighbor would make a sneak attack across the border. It’s certainly happened in the real world and in many fictional stories/universes, why not in Star Trek? Matter of fact, in the "grander arc that is Star Trek" as you put it, there are numerous examples of shoot'em up episodes from TNG all the way through Enterprise. It would appear that a shoot'em up plot is not contrary at all to Star Trek. Justly forgotten….: Trek fans don’t seem to want to forget about this episode; it is pretty popular among Trek episodes. If the spinoffs that came later are unable to come up with decent storylines to flesh out the Romulan civilization further, well perhaps better writers are needed. The Romulans as presented in TOS are not inconsistent….they are noble but arrogant adversaries; not the back-stabbing assholes the spinoffs showed them to be…it would appear the spinoffs got that one wrong. The RNZ? It’s an area of space neither side can cross without it constituting an act of war. Considering how many Romulan episodes were in TOS, its all the information thats needed. Faceless War: And the problem here is? By 23rd century standards, the ships and weapons in that war were primitive…similar to how WWII combat aircraft are primitive compared with the latest 21st century combat models. The Earth, Romulan, and allied forces didn’t have weapons comparable to photons (soon to be installed on 23rd century Fed ships) or phasers….and more primitive than the disruptors used on Klingon ships. And that visual contact thing that gets folks in a tizzy. So what? The Romulans, allies, or earthers never sent a visual signal to anyone during the war for reasons not defined. And the problem is? Perhaps the battle signals were sent in code, they would be just battle commands to a fleet anyway…why do they need to bother with visual connections that would interfere with the tactical data onscreen. And even if the Earth forces wanted to use visual signals, would it be a stretch to believe that the Romulans and other forces present were Xenophobic? Ditch Balance of Terror: (I am using my best Dr. Daystrom going mad screechy voice now) Ditch Balance of Terror Timo? No, its invinsible. Look what its done...your mighty spinoffs…toys for TOS to command. Look how they dance to the tune and try to abide to continuity..... Speeds: Very little is mentioned about speeds. The Enterprise opens the show at maximum emergency warp speed, assumedly warp 8....Scotty says he'll get a little more out of her. After the Rom destroys outpost 4 and cloaks, the Enterprise adopts a parallel course matching speed and direction whatever range they are when the order is given...no distance to the intruder is mentioned. At one hour from the neutral zone (at the Rommies speed), they go to the briefing where Scott says "their power is simple impulse". The meaning of this has been debated for years of course. The only way to know for sure would be to ask those who produced the show, which probably isn't an option now. The most logical meaning of this line would be that the Rom ship's FTL engines are powered by the same type of powerplant as the Enterprise's impulse engines and this is not as efficient as M/A reactors meaning the BOP cannot move as fast as the Big E. There is one instance that the speeds are easy to figure out. The sequence where both ships enter the comet's tail. It takes some 75 or so seconds for the Enterprise to go through the end of the comet's tail....that would have to be low end sublight. The Romulan is also taking its time moving through the comet. When the Rom fires, the Enterprise adopts reverse course with full emergency warp power, perhaps warp 8 again. After the hit, they go back to matching course and speed with the Romulan...no indication of how far away or speed. At one minute to the neutral zone, the Big E acelerates ("full ahead, max warp") and begins shooting at a range where a hit would be "the wildest stroke of luck". The Romulan goes to evasive maneuvers, but whether they actually are at warp or if merely making wild course deviations at sublight is not specified. The Romulans are in the zone, the Ent 20 seconds away. Kirk says to tell Starfleet they are heading into the zone. In the next sequence we have 50-some seconds of the Romulan bridge. The Enterprise "stays within range" according to a Rom officer. Rom ship stops when wreckage is spewed. Apparently the Enterprise, in her warp 8 dash did not cross the zone as Kirk says they are at the neutral zone while they are waiting for the Rom to move again. Perhaps they flew back and forth or up and down close to the zone as they tried to blanket the Rommie with phasers or perhaps Stiles was wrong when he indicated the NZ was 20 seconds away. The Enterprise emits a signal of some sort and then powers up. The Rom tries to move towards the ship. The Enterprise backs up but no mention of speed given..perhaps sublight since they do not want to get too far away from the Roms last known approx position. Enterprise fires in general direction of suspected location of intruder. Wreckage. Nuclear bomb. Disabled engines, circuit burn outs and overloads. Need to make repairs. Unspecified time passes. Romulan moves toward the Enterprise to fire...no speed is mentioned. Enterprise finally gets phasers to fire and ends the engagement.