I’m writing a role-playing game that will be centred around piracy at the rim of Tarazet space. (Tarazet is a city state that is building an empire, part of the setting for the Extreme Future game.) I wanted to make the spaceships in the game a bit ‘piraty’, and that means rigging and broadsides, and as I researched each, I discovered that there are actually very good reasons for spaceships to have both.
Spaceships need giant radiation surfaces to get rid of all the heat they generate and these could easily, at least in my mind, take the form of giant golden sails.
Ship-of-the-line size spaceships would also need large guns, and they probably wouldn’t be mounted in turrets like a real world battleship, because turning the turret would produce an equal and opposite reaction that knocked the spaceship off course. Most actions would also probably take place at long range, where it makes as much sense to turn the whole spaceship, rather than rotate a turret.
So, from scientific(ish) thinking, we get spaceships with rigging and sails, that also have broadsides of guns. A spinal mount for a really big gun would probably make just as much sense, if not more, but it doesn’t look as cool, so we are going with the idea of a broadside.