Looking back, it's surprising how much of our history has basically been declaring war on people and stealing their technology. That's "civilisation" for you, I suppose.

- An Imperial archeologist

The history of the Girdo Empire before its intergalactic age is poorly recorded, although a lot of detail is known about it for a civilisation whose main species was kept unknown even to its allies. Since all of the history comes through official Imperial sources, however, it is not clear how much of it is true and how much is propaganda, disinformation, or just distorted.

The dates referenced here are from the PE/AE dating system that is based on the year that the Empire launched its first manned interplanetary spacecraft. 1 AE occurred in AD 2654, and there are approximately 1.007 Earth years for each Taukappan year.

Planet-Bound History Edit

Valley of Death

The Valley of Death on Taukappa, which lay between the Teledros Forest and the ocean, was filled with carnivorous plants that fed on insects and small herbivores fleeing from predators in the forest. It used to be a lush river valley before the Imperial species wiped out all animal life there, resulting in the extinction of all large plants in the area due to there being nothing to eat their fruit and spread their seeds. This in turn resulted in the valley's soil becoming very nutrient-poor, so when it was recolonised from the continent of Doltarn, the plants that settled there had to evolve new ways of getting vital nutrients.

Like nearly all species in the Girdo Galaxy except for those of the Grox Empire, the species of Taukappa were descended from primitive lifeforms seeded across the galaxy by a race billions of years earlier. The ancestors of Taukappa's sapient species were the archecoids, vicious predators on the continent of Argolce. They were omnivores, but spent most of their time hunting. A mass extinction about one million years before the first tribal cultures appeared is believed to be the result of the entire Imperial species hunting every other creature more than a few centimetres in length on their home continent to extinction.

After the mass extinction, the Imperial species were alone in peace and so they lost most of their natural weaponry and eventually developed primitive tribal societies. Over the course of around 1.5 million years, species from elsewhere on the planet colonised the now-empty Argolce. The Imperial species had since given up their warlike ways, and when they saw that some of the more intelligent of the new species were trying to copy their tribal society, they allied them. From their new friends they learnt new uses for items such as rocks and sticks. The Imperial tribes developed musical and hunting instruments, and finally weapons of war. One night, one Imperial tribe slaughtered every semi-sapient creature nearby and plundered their homes.

Now the Imperial species was dominant, they spread out across their homeworld. However, there was no long-range communications technology back then, so most tribes lost contact with each other. It is believed that about thirty different tribal groups lived in different regions of Taukappa. Two of these tribes fought a short war, and the losers fled to another continent. The winning tribe eventually built the first city on the planet, Apalos.

Imperial-Kingdom War Edit

As would be expected with a war that has lasted this long, we aren't quite sure why it even started.

- An Imperial tactician

Unusually, the Apalosians' first weapons were based on sound. Although they worked out how to use fuels for propulsion, they merely used them for propelling war vehicles and not for propelling projectiles. With their new "sonicannons", the Apalosians conquered several other tribes and assimilated them into their nation. After invading three more primitive cities on Argolce, the Nation of Apalos soon became known simply as the Empire. The Empire assimilated the technologies of these other cities, too, and eventually developed gunpowder weaponry which quickly placed the sonic guns into a niche position in the armed forces.

Meanwhile, across the ocean, the tribe which had been defeated in the war thousands of years earlier had taken control of its continent, Doltarn. From its capital city of Emeshk, the Kingdom ruled.

Both the Empire and the Kingdom were very similar nations. Both were ruled by a single figurehead, with leadership passed down through the family. Both were also militaristic, a quality rarely seen in the Imperial species since the Argolcean mass extinction nearly two million years earlier. However, the cultures of the two societies were very different, most noticably in their sense of aesthetics. The Empire constantly changed the styles of its technology and buildings to adapt to the most recent technology. The Kingdom retained the style established when Emeshk was founded: that of castles and cannons. However, this was only the aesthetics of their technology, and as for the actual quality of their technology, both sides made good use of autocannons, missile-guided artillery shells and internal combustion engines. The primary technological advantage that the Empire had over the Kingdom was their aircraft, which had faster engines and were mostly armed with laser weaponry instead of machine guns.

Attack on Test Flight

A Kingdom attack on the experimental Imperial aircraft Test Flight restarted the war between the two rivals.

After an experimental Imperial aircraft, Test Flight, was shot down over the Faratan Mountains within Kingdom borders, the two nations fought a long war against each other for many thousands of years. Although the Kingdom had numerical superiority, the Empire's military technology remained consistently better, and over time improved to the point that the Kingdom could not cope. This was due to the Empire's continued assimilation of new technologies from conquered cities, which also meant that the Kingdom's technology was soon used against its creators.

For around 5500 years, the Empire and the Kingdom were at a stalemate. The Empire had captured the Kingdom city of Faratan, but that was as far as they managed to get. Battles and skirmishes constantly erupted on Doltarn around the Faratan Desert and the Bay of Emeshk, and on Argolce the Teledros region saw frequent skirmishes between the scout forces of the Kingdom and the defence forces of the Empire. All three regions saw several attempts at full-scale invasions, but very few ever succeeded. The Second Battle of Faratan lased for forty-eight years as both nations constantly built their armies and sent them off to fight each other on the Faratan Plains. The Kingdom finally managed to reclaim Faratan, only for the Imperial Air Force to return a few months later and take it back.

Missile Barrage

The Kingdom's initial numerical advantage was put to use guarding tactically significant areas such as Chalkcliff Sands near the Bay of Emeshk.

The Empire continued to build up its scientific knowledge, primarily improving development in both weapons technology and efficient logistics (which led to a revolution in nanotechnology). Strangely enough, neither the Empire nor the Kingdom developed nuclear weapons during the war. If they had, the nuclear-armed side would probably have been able to gain a quick victory. Eventually, the Empire gained both the technological and the numerical advantage, and finally occupied the Kingdom's city during the Battle of Emeshk. The King surrendered and the Kingdom was absorbed into the Empire, but not before Kessler syndrome, possibly a final act of sabotage against Imperial efforts, struck Taukappa's satellite constellations and rendered space travel impossible.

For about one thousand years, the Taukappans remained at peace on their homeworld. A few centuries into this isolation, they moved en masse in a utopian virtual reality, their now-lifeless buildings being converted into server farms and robotic laboratories. Once safe space travel become possible once again, the first Taukappan spaceship capable of interplanetary travel, the Premier, was built and launched.

Girdo Galactic War Edit

One Small Flight

The Premier's first mission was to explore an asteroid in the Imperials' home system. Later, it became the flagship of the Imperial Space Force.

6500 years before the Empire built its first spacecraft, and at the same time as the Ambush in the Faratan Mountains that started the main part of the Imperial-Kingdom War, the Second Galactic Federation was involved in the Second Girdo Grox War against the Grox Empire. The war was going well for the Federation until the Conqrix were sent into Federation territories and began attacking major planets. The Federation's Grand Galactic Fleet was forced to leave Grox Space to battle the Conqrix, but their forces were soon too spread out and they were defeated by the Conqrix armies and auxiliary Grox fleets.

Although the Girdo Grox Empire had been massively reduced in size and crippled for thousands of years, the rest of the galaxy suffered more. The Federation was destroyed, its member races were all but wiped out and galactic society crumbled. None of the Federation's member empires (which included nearly all of the empires in the galaxy except for the Grox) survived, with the exception of a few remnant civilisations who held onto a few barely-inhabitable planets near the edge of what once were Federation territories.

Trade Frigate under attack

The Frigate-class cargo ships ("Trade Frigates") were armed and armoured freighters designed to be able to defend themselves against pirate ships.

A few thousand years later, the first new spacefaring civilisations appeared on the galactic map. They found scraps of old Federation starships, and scrambled to claim systems where they could find more traces of advanced technology. However, most of them were too busy fighting each other to gain much territory.

Little has been recorded about this time, due to there being very little organisation between empires. Much of what is known involves the conflict between the Leptliss and the Flies in the Northern Arm, while the Southern Arm saw conflict amongst clans of Pirakkei and Tsajaginykar. In the 3rd century PE, the Southern Arm saw the "War of Spodification", or Reclamation of the Zuckhs, part of the Radeon crusades led by Jaharan ae-Zamarros. Most of the violence was directed against the Zxxon Monks, descendants of apostate Zuckhs who had abandoned the worship of Spode for that of the God That Will Come, and after the destruction of most of the Pirakkei and Tsajagiykar, the glassing of the primary Zxxon temple-world of Maekor rendered the Southern Arm free of the influence major spacefaring civilisations.

Imperial War Against All Edit

It's a long story. We kind of... killed everybody.

- Emperor Ghelax Dreyk

When the Empire reached space, they took advantage of the situation that the Galactic War and Jaharani Crusade brought. The Empire made secret alliances and began assimilating alien technology, purchasing the designs off of other civilisations and adapting them to their starships. It is believed that, during this time, the Empire were perfectly happy to show their faces and reveal their names to other empires. However, they slowly became paranoid and xenocidal, hiding their appearance from any new empires they encountered. This was triggered by two things.

Their paranoia was provoked by a wave of pirate attacks on the Empire's outer colonies. Imperial intelligence agencies suggested that the pirates could have been privateers and mercenaries for other empires, based on several key pieces of evidence that have never been declassified. For several years, the Imperial Space Force began to build up its military, leading to creation of the Droner-class drone starfighters and the armed Trade Frigates.

Their xenocidal tendencies were no such much created as brought back from hibernation by scientific studies. The Imperial species developed a natural instinct against all other animal life during their time as predators. This subsided when they developed tribes, and during the first years of their spacefaring empire it was merely a strong patriotic pride for their race and their homeworld (and, by extension, their colonies that were terraformed using life from Taukappa). Aliens were not hated, but alien life was studied with intense scientific curiosity.

Then, scientists discovered something suprising. All lifeforms from planets they had studied were in fact related to the organisms from Taukappa. They came to the conclusion that all other spacefaring civilisations were preventing new forms of life from evolving due to their constant terraforming of other planets. As far as the Empire's scientists were concerned, this was a bad thing. This meant that their astrobiologists were being deprived of an opportunity to study truly alien worlds, and truly alien organisms were being deprived of an opportunity to exist.

Both this, and the pirate attacks, provided the Imperial Space Force with a perfect opportunity to attack their neighbors. So they did. Records of this "War Against All", named after a prophesised conflict feared by Warrior races, are almost non-existent. The Empire claims that most of the Northern Arm empires except for the Grox were allied in a "Federated Alliance" against the Empire, but the Empire spread into the Southern Arm via heavily-defended wormholes and used their newly-founded sectors to boost their industrial capacity.

After a little under a decade of fighting, the Empire had defeated all of its enemies, at a rate of approximately one per year:

  • 12 AE: Armoured Tentekh'l
  • 13 AE: Gooplet Republic
  • 14 AE: Fly Swarms
  • 15 AE: Gooplet Tribes
  • 16 AE: Leptliss Empire
  • 21 AE: Pirakkei Confederation
  • Exact dates unknown: Saqqarit Radeons and Zxxon Monks

Not counting the few remaining pirate clans, the Empire and the Grox were now the only spacefaring civilisations in the galaxy. This was achieved much like their victory against the Kingdom centuries earlier - despite having fewer numbers to begin with, assimilation and adaptation soon gave them the upper hand. However, the Empire was not speciesist and it is believed many members of civilisations wiped out by the Empire became part of its society.

Third Girdo Grox War Edit

Identification: Taukappaoid. Threat level: Minor.

- The Girdo Grox Emperor

The Empire studied the Grox. They scanned their technology and examined every scrap of information about the Grox that they could find. They had heard legends and stories about the Grox, and a short first contact with the Grox before the outbreak of the War Against All had shown that they were different to all other life in the galaxy that the Empire knew of. The Empire allied the Grox in order to learn more about them, but they quickly discovered that the cyborgs were far too arrogant and ethnocentric to let Imperial scientists anywhere near them. Deciding that they needed to be taught a lesson in humility, the Empire immediately decided to declare war on the Grox and began its crusade to force to Grox into a surrender.

However, the Empire soon had to try different tactics as it turned out that the Grox were more advanced than they had expected. Over the course of a decade, they uplifted around forty different species in two star clusters just outside Grox Space. They allied them, gave them gifts of sporebucks and spice, and sent them off to war against the Grox. Meanwhile, the Empire's forces attacked from another front and both sides closed in towards the Girdo Grox Capital.

Like with the Second Federation thousands of years earlier, the Grox fought back on the allies' home fronts. Fortunately for the Empire, galactic technology had advanced in the intervening 6500 years. Orbital defences such as Uber Turrets shot down the Conqrix Infestation Pods before they landed and deployed their shields, and both the Uber Turrets and city perimeter turrets were capable of fending off the Grox flotillas. The newly-uplifted empires did not have the benefits of all of this technology, but as far as the Grox were concerned they were less important targets than larger, older, and more advanced Empire.

Droner Missile

When in flotilla formation, Grox Warships used loose swarming tactics in order to decrease the chances of being hit by standard weapons. However, they were useless against antimatter missiles, which were added to the majority of Droners as soon as possible before the Grox could change their tactics in response.

New Tactics Edit

Even with the defences, the Girdo Grox Empire was large enough to be ultimately pushing the war to a stalemate, which would in turn lead to an Imperial loss because the Grox could produce ships faster than the Empire. Imperial military scientists came to the conclusion that antimatter weaponry was the best option. Antimatter missiles could destroy an entire Grox flotilla with a single warhead, and the Droners could easily be modified to fire them along with the regular proton missiles. Along with other superweapons such as the Gravitation Wave, the Premier could also make use of antimatter missiles, bombs, and Planet Busters. The scientists calculated that this would push the war in the Empire's favour, simply because the Grox did not use antimatter weaponry. The disadvantage to this was the reason why the Grox avoided antimatter weapons: antimatter could not be replicated on board any reasonably-sized starship, and had to be produced in colony factories. Each planet of the Empire and its allies was used to produced antimatter munitions for the war, but, since the Empire's worlds were so far away and its allies' colonies were prone to being destroyed by the Grox, this was not enough.

The scientists shortlisted three possible solutions. The first solution was for the Empire to give fortifications to its allies. The second solution would be for the Empire to build more colonies close to Grox Space. Both of these had a major issue in that the construction sites would be obvious targets for the Grox. Construction would take even longer for new Imperial colonies. The third possible solution would be to build antimatter factories into Imperial starships. The current starship classes were too small - the Premier, despite being the largest ship in the Imperial Space Force, was only 5000m3 in volume, and it could only afford to have one-tenth of that converted into something else before it was making sacrifices - so a whole new class of gigantic capital ship would have to be developed.

The Empire decided that the first of these options was just too risky. Plus, the Empire still had a sense of xenophobia and wanted to keep the possibility of eradicating the civilisations at a future date. Improved defences would make that much more difficult. The second option was probably safer as it would take the Grox a long time to find the new colonies. In addition, Imperial officials believed that it was time for the Empire to expand to a new sector of space. The third option would take a few weeks longer than the other options, but would mean that the ships would have to return to a planetary factory less often. The large capital ships could also function as motherships for fleets of Droners. However, the Imperials concluded that if the Grox found out about factory ships then they would gain a new idea and so they would have less reason to avoid using antimatter weapons. It would take a short time for the Grox to convert their Probes into factory ships, and then the Empire would lose the advantage that they had.

They decided to expand their empire, and quickly set about colonising their new "Central Sector" in a region which had been cleared of Grox, near the base of one of the galactic arms.

The Day of Reckoning Edit

Eventually, the Empire was winning. Although several of the Empire's allies had been wiped out and most of the rest were severely weakened, the Grox were eventually reduced to their last planet. The Grox rejected an ultimatum to surrender, explaining that they had decided to give the defence ships on their homeworld antimatter missiles in order to destroy the Premier and most of its fleet on the one Grox colony they knew that the flagship would visit. The Empire quickly worked out that the best way to stop the Grox from firing their antimatter missiles would be to make doing so suicidal. The Premier, one Droner fleet and the remaining fifteen Trade Frigates in the Imperial Space Force all entered the Girdo Grox Capital's thin atmosphere and flew close to the ground.

Empire versus Grox

Imperial and Grox ships fire at each other.

Grox Warships flew to meet the Imperial ships, but then the Imperials quickly flew to one kilometre from the Grox. If one of the Grox ships fired an antimatter missile at the Imperials from that distance, all of the ships would be destroyed and the remaining Droner fleets in orbit would be able to destroy the Grox colonies with little resistance. Since the Grox had their regular missile generators removed to make space for the antimatter missiles, their only remaining weapons were blasters. The Imperial ships opened fire with their blasters, and so the Grox were forced to respond in the same way. The Grox were in such a densely-packed formation at this point that they suffered from a small degree of friendly fire and a lot of their blaster bolts were aimed inaccurately in order to try to avoid it. This gave the Empire the advantage they needed, and by the time the two fleets mixed most of the Grox had been destroyed and the Imperial ships simply flew unimpeded, having suffered only the loss of a few Droners.

Over each of the Girdo Grox Capital's cities, the Droner ships shot down all of the turrets while the Premier and Trade Frigates returned to the safety of orbit. However, the Grox colony vehicles proved to be well-armed and managed to shoot down many Droners. Still, the Imperial fleet whas successful and the Capital was now unarmed and defenceless.

The Premier gave the Grox a second chance to surrender and ask for peace. If the Grox refused again, the Empire would send armed soldiers into one of the Grox cities. There, the soldiers would find and analyse all of the Grox' advanced technology and then take a Grox drone and study it. If any harm came to the Imperial troops, the Grox would be given "the most painful death Grox can receive." The Grox still refused to surrender.

All of the information gathered about Grox technology and biology was transmitted to the orbiting Imperial Space Force. Then, before the Imperial soldiers prepared to be beamed up, the Grox drones - apparently not believing that the Empire would do anything while they had soldiers on the ground - attacked. The Empire's last transmission to the Grox was, "We warned you." Not long before the battle, the Premier had been chased to the Galactic Core by Grox ships. It hid in the Core's accretion disc until the Grox left, but then fell into the event horizon. When it returned a short while later, it had been given the Staff of Life. With the information from the ground forces, Imperial scientists had worked out that the Grox were not as alien as they had hoped, and they used their knowledge that terraforming destroyed Grox colonies to put the Staff of Life to good use. One of the Staff's charges was fired at the planet, and the Girdo Grox were no more. The ground troops were unharmed, and were soon beamed back up onto their ships.

Post-Grox Crisis Edit

After the Girdo Grox were defeated, the Empire was left as the most powerful civilisation in its galaxy. Its allies during the Third Girdo Grox War were weakened by the conflict, and their area of space was left alone as the different empires began to fight each other for dominance of their sector - a small-scale version of the First Phase of the Girdo Galactic War that covered the entire galaxy decades earlier. Eventually, they ended up destroying each others' empires and the few remaining ships were left to wander the galaxy as pirates.

The Grox technology improved the quality of life across the entire Empire. Zero-point energy extractors were developed. Automated bases could now be built inside gas giants' atmospheres, and they were used to mine white spice that could be refined into all of the other types of spice. The Grox technology was also carefully studied in order for the possibility of making new and powerful weapons, in the case that such things were needed.

The Empire built more colonies in several sectors around the rest of the Girdo Galaxy, near to where pre-spacefaring civilisations lived. When the civilisations finally developed space travel, the Empire contacted them. The newly-emerged empires were told that they had to comply with Imperial "environmental laws" (restrictions on colonisation to prevent "excessive" terraforming that the Empire felt would hinder the emergence of truly alien life) along with a few other regulations. In return, the Empire would provide them with advanced technology, protect them from pirate attacks, eco-disasters and other dangers, and avoid destroying their entire civilisation.

Although antimatter weapons were rarely given to any of these new empires, the other technology sometimes gave them a sense of superiority so they tried to avoid sticking to Imperial regulations. Because several of these empires banded together and threatened to attack the Empire, Imperial scientists developed the new weapons from Grox science to keep the other civilisations under control. Grox cybernetics helped the production of new infantry robots and antimatter explosives for these soldiers (such as grenades and mines) were mass-produced, meaning that the Empire could beam infantry into a city and threaten it with destruction without risking any actual lives or having to keep a spaceship in hostile skies where rebel spaceships could come to attack it. With soldiers placed inside the city, any attempt at destroying the Imperial forces would directly result in the destruction of a portion of the city itself. For larger shows of force, the Empire developed Sun Busters to make stars in rebelling systems go supernova. Eventually, the empires started to comply with the regulations again.

Meanwhile, there was also a problem with pirates. Decades earlier, the Empire's 9-year period of conquest during the War Against All had not succeeded in destroying every ship of the enemy empires. The Empire had assumed that any escaping ships, now homeless, would simply run out of resources and their occupants would die. However, this was far from the truth. Aliens escaping the loss of their homeworld formed bands of space pirates, and, after finding out they they had a common nemesis in the Empire, joined together into an alliance. The pirates then spent several decades building their forces. They pirated spice from primitive worlds, formed secret trade deals with and performed anonymous missions for any other empires they could find, scoured the galaxy for any traces of rare artefacts that could be sold, and even performed mercenary work during the short period of war near the Galactic Centre just after the fall of the Grox.

Eventually, the pirate fleets were powerful, and (at the same time as the diplomatic crisis elsewhere in the galaxy) they began ambushing small groups of Imperial ships. Pirate defence fighters would fire sine-wave ion missiles (modified minor proton missiles, used to disable ships more than to destroy them) at a Trade Frigate while the other fighters and the mothership would destroy any Droner escorts. The freighter would then be captured in the mothership's abductor beam and carried into its cargo bay. There, pirates would kill any Imperial crew, steal the precious cargo and use the ship's remains for scrap. For nearly a week, this plan rarely failed. Then, Imperial officials decided that they needed to improve the Trade Frigates' defences. They kept more Droner escorts around each Frigate and made the Frigates travel in groups. The pirates soon had to retreat and the attacks temporarily stopped.

A New Enemy Alliance (Battle of Telan) Edit

Third time lucky!

- Third Federation council member

The pirates began making secret deals with the empires that felt oppressed by the Empire, soon leading to the creation of an alliance calling itself the "Third Galactic Federation", after the Second Galactic Federation which had been destroyed thousands of years before and the semi-mythical First Galactic Federation from even earlier. Both Federations, the new alliance figured, were formed as havens of peace and freedom from hostile civilisations - previously the Grox, and now the Empire. Although the previous two alliances had fallen to their enemies, the empires that made up the third were certain that this in no way meant that the same would happen to them - "third time lucky", as their motto said.

Battle for the Atelania

Imperial forces battle a pirate task force above the remains of the Atelania in the Battle of Telan.

In order to make them seem more like the Second Federation, and also in order to find any potential technological advantage against the Empire, the Third Federation paid several of its pirate clans to scout the galaxy for any remains of the Grand Galactic Fleet's ships that had not previously been unearthed. Using clues scattered across the Beta Arm, one group of pirates discovered the old Belatra homeworld of Telan and, upon finding traces of a Grand Fleet starship in a forest in the northern foothills, landed one of their motherships there in order to set up a base for an excavation.

Before long, however, the Imperial Space Force discovered the mothership after capturing and questioning some pirates who had flew too close to their colonies. A small fleet, led by the Premier, launched a strike on the unprepared base. Even with advanced weaponry donated by the Third Federation, the pirates were no match for the Imperial strike fleet and the entire outpost was destroyed. Later, Imperial troops beamed down into the ship and accessed whatever they could find in its data storage. It turned out to be the Grand Galactic Fleet's flagship, the Atelania, and it had been shot down by a Grox Probe's ion cannon on the last day of the Second Grox War. Although no new technology could be gained from the ship - in fact, some of the technology was less advanced than the Empire already had - more information was learnt about the Second Federation which the Empire then gave to the Third Federation's civilisations, leading to a short period of peace between the two.

Shock and Awe (Battle of Taukappa) Edit

Planet Buster Interception

The crew of a Trade Frigate fly their ship to intercept the Federation Planet Buster.

The Third Federation continued to build up its forces in secret, all the while pretending to abide by all of the Empire's laws. Eventually, however, they decided that they were ready to battle the Imperial Space Force for domination of the galaxy.

First of all, they sent a large fleet to attack Taukappa. The primary orbital defences were overwhelmed, but managed to destroy several enemy flotillas before their downfall. Then, as Imperial Droners engaged the Federation warships over Imperial City, another craft entered the planet's atmosphere and hovered in the stratosphere two thousand kilometres away from the Apalosian coast. A low-flying Frigate-class freighter, just preparing to leave the planet, noticed the craft, and was informed by the planet's military authorities to destroy it as the Droners were occupied in fighting the main attack fleet. An antimatter missile destroyed the craft, but not before it had released its own payload.

The Federation had managed to develop its own Planet Buster, and the Empire's homeworld was its first target. The Frigate moved to intercept the bomb, and fired its weapons at it. None of the shots missed, but the Planet Buster was protected by shield deflectors and the cargo ship's weapons could do nothing against it. The Frigate continued its course, and flew directly into the warhead's path. Its navigational deflectors were set to its pressure shield mode, its engines were set to propel the ship as fast as possible, and the crew were ready to sacrifice their lives to save their planet. Which is exactly what happened. The Frigate hit the bomb's deflectors, and the pressure shields overwhelmed them and caused them to short out. The ship's course then took it directly through the warhead's outer shell and into the antimatter containment field. The antimatter explosion was still safely above the surface of the planet, but sent shockwaves through the ocean and blasted a crater in the shallow ocean floor.

The coastal portions of Apalos and Teledros were devastated by the resulting shockwave and tsunami, but the cities were still partially intact. Once the Droner fleet had defeated all of the attacking Federation ships, the rebuilding efforts began. It would take several months to rebuild the Argolcean east coast to its former status, and several decades for the aquatic ecosystem of the Outer Ocean to recover. Meanwhile, Imperial rule was temporarily taken to the city of Emeshk, on the other side of the planet to the destruction.

Droner Attack

A convoy of Third Federation Double Saucer-class motherships are attacked by a swarm of Droners.

Declaration of War Edit

Both the Empire and the Federation declared war on each other at the same time. The Federation released its fleets of large capital ships and ordered them to attack Imperial worlds. Meanwhile, the Empire sent its Droner attack fleets to intercept the Federation ships and attack weak Federation worlds.

The Empire was at an advantage technologically, numerically and tactically. The Federation's sole advantage was that the different empires all had their own tactically significant planets, and there was no single capital world that the Empire could target. However, the Empire's system of colonising in sectors produced an almost identical effect. Taukappa was only a slightly more important target than other Sector Capital Worlds, but defence in Imperial Sector had been greatly increased since the attempted Planet Busting and it would be impossible for any Federation fleets to get within ten parsecs of the planet to launch another such strategic attack. The Federation's attacks elsewhere had little more hope. The Imperial Space Force no longer let any Federation spaceships escape if they could help it, often hunting them down for hundreds of parsecs. Soon, the Federation was on the defensive, and every spaceship, vehicle, turret and soldier fought against the Empire to the end, without retreat or surrender.

The Federation tried other tactics, too. Some crashed disease-filled spaceships onto Imperial planets in order to trigger Eco Disasters, but the Empire had biological research centres on each of its colonies which quickly developed and spread cures to infected creatures. On a few planets, the infections spread and became major threats, but this did not delay the Imperial Space Force for long and at most lengthened the war by a few days. Also, Federation forces occasionally tried to ambush Imperial ships in interstellar and interplanetary space, but to no avail.

In a few cases, Federation starships managed to evade the Empire's task forces. They then visited pre-spaceflight worlds and tricked their inhabitants into thinking that the visitors were members of a poweful spacefaring empire, and then enslaving the inhabitants and forcing them to build weapons and spaceships. Imperial forces soon found them, however, which usually resulted in the Federation ships' crews being killed and, due to misunderstandings or (in a few cases) the native species deciding that the Imperial forces were being hostile towards them and opening fire, the enslaved civilisations were also destroyed.

Mission to Bilzac Edit

Mission to Bilzac

The Federation troops find themselves under attack by Screebles.

Both the Empire and the Federation were looking to gain technological advances over each other. Since the Second Galactic Federation did not provide any, the next step was to find artifacts from the First Galactic Federation. In particular, both sides were looking for Bilzac, homeworld of the Screebles. Like in the search for the Atelania nine years earlier, the Federation's privateers were sent to scout the galaxy for clues as to where it could be found. However, this time, the Empire arrived first, albeit simply due to luck. They set up a small excavation site at the base of the Halactacon Mountains near to Screeble's Column and Sporehenge.

Expecting to find an entire Imperial flotilla on the planet, the Federation gathered a fleet of starships and entered orbit. Finding only a small group of workers in a shallow pit in the ground, they sent a single Fury-class fighter which vaporised them with its lasers. The fighter was set to hover above the pit and its crew of four beamed down. However, the noise of laser fire disturbed a clan of Screebles in the valley nearby, who rushed towards the intruders to protect their sacred place.

Meanwhile, from behind the neighboring planet of Cattor, the starship Premier emerged. It arrived at Bilzac just above the Federation fleet, activated its shield deflectors and launched four antimatter missiles towards each mothership. After the explosions, two motherships and several fighters remained. The Premier outflew the fighters and sliced through one mothership with its lasers. It flew back up, firing its blasters at the approaching fighters, and dropped several bombs down towards the last mothership. Several of the bombs hit, and the mothership was destroyed. The Premier then quickly destroyed the remaining fighters with its blasters and lasers. Once they were destroyed, it deactivated its shields and flew towards the excavation site.

The Screebles sneaked towards the Federation soldiers, charged over the barriers around the pit and attacked. Two of the troops were swiftly killed and the other two, spotting the Premier arriving in the distance, beamed up to their fighter and preapred to flee. However, the Imperial flagship fired a proton missile at the Federation starfighter, destroying it before it could escape. Although the Screeble artifacts were still mostly covered in soil, the Premier managed to beam them into its cargo hold. It then left, to avoid angering the Screebles any further. The Empire once more did not gain any immediate technological advantage from analysing the artifacts that they had collected. However, the Federation suffered a morale loss and still had an inferior military to the Imperial Space Force.

Imperial Victory Edit

The war did not last long. In three months, the empires of the Federation were reduced to their homeworlds, and any attempts at recolonising other planets were met with Droner fleets. Later, the homeworlds had their populations eradicated and cities destroyed. Most of the planets were "xenoformed" to kill off all native life, and a few close to Imperial space were re-terraformed up to ideal conditions but left barren so that they could be monitored for the appearance of any new lifeforms. Other planets suffered through orbital bombardment but were otherwise left alone. Whole-planet surrenders were ignored, but whole-empire surrenders resulted in mass airlifting of citizens who were then taken to safety on nearby Imperial worlds, followed by the destruction of all remaining settlements by either xenoforming, orbital bombardment or both.

Once again, the Empire was the sole spacefaring society in its entire home galaxy. And this time, they decided not to uplift or otherwise help any other sapient civilisations. Now they had peace, and the Empire could continue working on its scientific and technological research.

Intergalactic Era Edit

Imperial Wormhole Experiment

A Droner-class ship is sent through an experimental artificial wormhole.

After the Post-Grox Crisis, the Empire decided to explore other galaxies. They had a problem, however, in that none of their current forms of spaceship propulsion would allow them to reach any nearby galaxies, either because they would simply not allow travel to stars so far away (with the FTL drives) or because travel times were on the order of millions of years (with slower forms of propulsion), and Imperial scientists did not want to wait so long to discover the new galaxies. So, the Empire shifted much of its research onto developing an Intergalactic Drive that could propel starships to other galaxies. Their first target would be the nearby Plazith Rim, of which Girdo was a satellite.

However, Imperial scientists also developed other advanced technologies during this time. In fact, the first three years after the defeat of the Third Federation saw the development of completely effective zero-point energy generators, which allowed for electric power to be produced without relying on other sources of energy such as nuclear fusion. By the time of the centennial celebrations of the launch of the Premier, such generators had become the dominant form of power supply across the entire Empire. In one hundred years, the Empire had gone from being a new species in a galaxy filled with war to being a near-utopian galaxy-spanning civilisation. However, they did not know if their luck would carry them into the other galaxies - if they could ever get there.

Along with scientific developments, the Empire also began a SEGI (Search for Extra-Galactic Intelligence) project, designed to make contact with alien civilisations both by searching for extragalactic communications and also by sending their own messages to other galaxies in an attempt to get a response. Intergalactic communication could lead the way to the development of an Intergalactic Drive using alien help, or if not, two-way communication could allow for Trade Frigates to use their Twosystem Drives to travel between galaxies, which could in turn allow for the Empire to begin extragalactic colonisation. However, this relied on other civilisations being able and willing to communicate, searching for vaguely-aimed transmissions in their local area, and using the same hyperluminal communications systems as the Empire.

New developments in FTL travel were made in 99 AE (2762 AD), including the invention of a functioning wormhole generator improved from the prototypes held by the Second Federation with help from Grox technology. However, these were still not capable of making connections between places that had not been precisely located, such as distant galaxies. Developments in other fields were also achieved, and the Empire soon considered itself to have mastered nearly all science.

The Empire then went through with a cultural revolution, starting a process to reform their civilisation into what they termed "perfection". As far as they were concerned, there was only one more discovery to be made, and that was the ability to travel freely at superluminal speeds between galaxies. This was achieved in 100 AE (2763 AD), with the creation of wormholes that could be directed to anywhere in the universe.

First Intergalactic Contacts Edit

Intergalactic Premier

The Premier travels through intergalactic space.

The Empire began building large motherships (the Imperium-class), with added Intergalactic Drives, that would act as Imperial command bases during their exploration of other galaxies. First of all, they arrived in the Plazith Rim and sent cloaked Frigate-class ships as scouts to locate the most advanced local civilisation. Determining that this was the Delpha Coalition of Planets, the mothership Imperium moved towards the DCP's homeworld of Mirenton to try and learn more about them. However, they wandered into the range of Mirenton's sensors and had to decloak and send a pre-recorded transmission to the military forces there, to avoid being considered as hostile.

Mirenton's defence forces were wary, as they had to be on high alert due to the civil war that the DCP was in at the time. The DCP's Admiral Kilnok recommended that the Imperium should move to the nearby neutral planet of Lucara, and from there communications could resume. After first contact with the Capricornians (see below), The two civilisations quickly became on better terms with each other, and the Empire gave the DCP 1008 Droners from the seven of its Imperium-class ships that were in the Plazith Rim for use in the DCP Civil War. When the Warlord Fleets began their assault on the Delpha Sector, the seven motherships quickly and quietly fled DCP space to other, more peaceful regions of the galaxy. There they quickly built new Droner Swarms, and returned once the separatist forces had been defeated.

News of the Girdo Empire spread quickly from Lucara, and a few other civilisations made contact with the Imperium. The Capricorn Sector Alliance (later "United Republic of Cyrannus") was the first of these to invite the Empire's ships into their home galaxy of Cyrannus, so the Empire sent the ships Galaxy and Peacemaker to CSA space to make further communications with them away from the DCP and their war.

After the main hostilities of the DCP Civil War ended, the Empire joined the Seven Starr Alliance in order to be able to gain more information and to exert greater influence on the intergalactic community. The Empire soon sent its ships Diplomat and Explorer to the Quadrant Galaxies to make contact with Rambo Nation, whom they learnt about through the SSA's databases.

More civilisations began to contact the Empire, including the Zazane and the Gablinus-Avis. However, these did not excite Imperial scientists. Studies of Mirentonian life gave them the conclusion that most life that they had discovered so far were "Pseudospodian" lifeforms, incredibly similar to the organisms of their home galaxy and, the scientists hypothesized, possibly the result of similar events many billions of years ago.

However, the Grimbolsaurians also provided them with important news. The discovery of spacefaring lifeforms in the Lagross Rift of the Plazith Rim seemed to mean that "truly alien" life had been definitely discovered at last. In adddition, the DCP claimed that they had in the past also discovered silicon-based life, lifeforms that only live for microseconds on the surface of a neutron star, space cells, and most mysteriously "lifeforms that only exist as a form". Although Imperial scientists wondered if the DCP's definition of "life" was the same as their own, it showed that the Imperial search for "truly alien" life was far from hopeless.

War against the Xhodocto Edit

Imperium and Droners

The Starfighter releases its Droner Fleets over Detelri-II.

However, this sense of hope was quickly destroyed by a new threat. The Xhodocto, an enormous demonic army, were preparing to destroy all life in the universe. Imperial scientists read about their last attempt to do so in the SSA's databases, so the Empire's tacticians knew that they would soon have to go to war. All across the Girdo Galaxy, wartime military production began. 10 million Droners were produced each day, and the Imperium-class motherships carried them from the Girdo Galaxy to Detelri, an uninhabited system just outside the main disc of the Tuuros Galaxy. Meanwhile, various allied fleets - ones whose ships all had intergalactic travel - gathered in the nearby Corisa Galaxy. The "March of the Apocalypse" was about to turn into a total war.

Before long, the Xhodocto caused the structure of the multiverse to weaken and for the Inferno Realm (or "Hell") to flood into many regions of the universe. The Empire and their allies regrouped outside of Tuuros, and soon continued with the war in Tuuros/Hell. However, the Empire had a problem in that the Girdo Galaxy had apparently disappeared, and soon all of the Droners still fighting in Tuuros were destroyed by the Xhodocto within a week. The entire Imperial fleet was now composed of six Imperium-class ships, 36 Frigates, and 1296 Droners - the other three Imperiums and millions of Droners were stranded in Girdo when it disappeared. Fortunately, the Empire managed to fit their motherships and Trade Frigates with functional (if imperfect) "superlasers", so they were still fully capable of fighting against the Xhodocto. Eventually, one Imperium-class ship, the Starfighter, left the battlefield for the Plazith Rim in order to maintain an Imperial presence in the universe away from the front lines of the war.

Finally, when the war finished, the Girdo Galaxy returned. The Empire had produced over two hundred million Droners (4300 Wartime Droner Swarms) and had worked on many technological improvements during their isolation from the rest of the universe. Upon their return, they brought back all of their ships and people from outside Girdo so that they could upgrade their ships and reintegrate their people back into the group mind.

Girdo Campaigns and Aftermath Edit

Plazith Rim Part II

A Girdo-Human battle during the Girdo Campaigns.

Main article: Girdo Campaigns

A large portion of the rest of the Imperial Space Force was sent to fight against various xenophobic civilisations that were deemed to be a threat to "truly alien" life, in a short series of conflicts known as the Girdo Campaigns. Other aims were to obain advanced technology as part of "Project Timeship", and to create the Girdo Nature Reserve, consisting of most of the Girdo Galaxy, for "truly alien" life.

Shortly after the Campaigns, Emperor Ghelax Dreyk either died or resigned, and his position was taken over by Emperor Mazipnos Tokzhalat, the first non-Taukappan Girdo Emperor. Under his rule, the Girdo Empire generally kept out of conflicts, their role in the Seven Starr Alliance being more focused on scientific and technological development. However, they became involved in the Sombrero War, and when Ambassador Ten'Trantia to Rambo Nation was attacked and injured by a bounty hunter from the Confederacy of Allied Systems, the Empire also sent a Droner force of 8,304,768 ships to fight in the Cyrannus Galactic War. More peaceful adventures embarked upon by the Girdo Imperial Space Force included the First Contact mission with the Civilisation in the Plazith Rim.

Later, during the evacuation of Girdo before the "Annihilation", the Girdo Empire merged with all of the other evacuating forces, becoming the Apalos. However, the Droners fighting in Cyrannus and its satellites remained there until joining Apalos after the Rowar Incident, and many Girdo ambassadors across the universe were also not merged into Apalos.

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