Finally realized an analogy – why “space fighters” makes me twitch.
They’re not fighters. They’re dinghies. Powered smallboats. It’s possible – in fact, it’s probable – that they can get greater acceleration (up to pilot tolerances) than the heavy ship that’s carrying them. But their range and capacity are very limited, and using a motorboat as the analogy best demonstrates the problem.
Depending on the weapons available and some of the other mechanics I can probably justify small craft in certain situations. But as force projection or flexible defense? No. Not without a significant handwave to explain why smaller craft can have significantly greater tolerances for inertial compensation AND greater acceleration AND enough endurance to matter.
hmm. You know what? I might be able to do that. If I’m making magic drives for interstellar travel anyway…