You think the Nimitz-class is ugly? I have a contender for you - the Hoover class. You can see its side profile at Ex-Astris-Scientia. Man, this thing is fugly.
There are only three decent or good looking Federation ships - the Crossfield, the Walker, and the Shepherd (an inverse Walker).
Registered: Nov 2009
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There's a million things I haven't done, but just you wait
Member # 343
No, only Shepard & Walker, & those belong post-Dominion War without bridge windows (& they need better names). All the rest are fucking awful & John Eaves needs his starship designibg & naming licenses revoked.
-------------------- "I never agreed with Jefferson once—we have fought on like seventy-five different fronts. But when all is said & all is done...Jefferson HAS beliefs; Burr has none."
Registered: Jun 2000
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I'm still torn myself about whether those ships are completely awful, or just awful because they share so little of the classic Starfleet design aesthetic. I read that someone else demanded angular nacelles (maybe Bryan Fuller, but I'm not certain). Though Eaves has definitely had a thing for angular nacelles since the beginning (Enterprise-E, Jem'Hadar battlecruiser, Klingon Raptor and D5...).
I second the vote for Hoover being the fugliest. It's just an unbalanced, disproportioned mess. Dishonorable mention to the Magee, for having those huge-ass nacelles embedded straight into the saucer. It looks like somebody stepped on it.
-------------------- “Those people who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do.” — Isaac Asimov Star Trek Minutiae | Memory Alpha
Registered: Nov 2000
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Greetings fellow curmudgeons! Hope all are well!
For my part, I don't see what's wrong with the DSC ships. As with ENT before, they may flout our preconceived expectations of what the pre-TOS era "should" look like, but we simply have to readjust our perspective as to what this so-called "classic Starfleet design aesthetic" actually is based on what it shows.
I found the KT ships much less aesthetically pleasing, personally (apart from the Kelvin herself, which is quite decent except for the "rocket nacelle" feature). And DSC's new-old 1701 in particular is infinitely more so than the one(s) from the Abrams/Lin films, to my eye.
I would not find a bunch of stuff that looked more like the Franz Joseph ships or the Loknar to be any sort of improvement. (Apologies if that's a straw man.)
The Klingon ships I'm far less enthusiastic about, but not because they break with any previous design aesthetic. That "green bird" thing got way tired; good riddance, for a while at least. There's always room for a diverse variety of aesthetics in any era, IMO.