"Ex Populus, Ex Foederatio."
- The Federation's Motto
"Good ideals and people with the wrong leaders- Lions led by donkeys,"
- Admiral Tully on the Federation, 2300
The Federation is a governing body of multiple sectors of the universe, spanning hundreds of sectors at its peak. It existed for nearly a century before The Rebellion nearly destroyed it in 2298. The Federation is a representative democracy, where elected officials known as senators participate in the senate to pass proposed legislation. The Federation was severely weakened by the Federation-Mantis War, and even further so by the Federation Civil War. by 2315, the Federation is struggling to keep a hold on its territories, and the problem is exacerbated by the new war with the Coalition. However, since the Coalition is advancing down a single arm of the galaxy, the Federation is still managing to hold the Coalition back in various delaying actions, but are slowly being pushed back towards the front lines.
The Mutual Trade Pact
The Federation was formed by the Zoltan, the Engi and the Humans initially as a trade pact in 2295. The original agreement, the Mutual Trade Pact, was devised to put an end to the Belt Wars being fought over mineral-rich asteroid belts and planets. It was not thought at the time that the Federation would become a nation- however, the turbulent years that followed forced the trade agreement to become much more in the face of adversities which affected all of the races.
The Birth of a 'Federation'
One of the challenges faced were the Pirate Cabals which were bothering all three of the races involved. Mostly made up of humans and zoltan, the Pirate Cabals were disrupting trade routes and preying on merchants. In the early era of space travel, merchant vessels were little more than containers sandwiched between a cockpit and an engine assembly, with no weapons and barely any evasive capability. This, coupled with the long time it took to recharge the primitive, heavy and cumbersome FTL Drives of the time, made merchants easy pickings for pirates, who at the time used mostly small vessels striking from hidden nebula bases or larger 'motherships' which carried one or two smaller vessels. The largest of the Cabals, the Kraken Clan, had bases in zoltan, engi and human sectors. The three races then formed a rudimentary task force, a hodgepodge of different human, engi and zoltan ships, in what was called a 'Federated' Navy, since all the ships were technically still under the control of their respective governments. This combined navy managed to engage and scatter the Kraken Clan, making sure that they wouldn't have any strongholds inside federation space for the next 250 years. This 'Federated' Naval Task Force broke up after the Cabals had been mostly eradicated. however the memory of the effectiveness remained, and the Federation Defence Pact was created, so that the Zoltan, Engi, and Humans would be able to merge their fleets under a so-called 'Federated High Command,' made up of zoltan, engi and human commanders, in the case of emergency. However the Federation was not formed from this, since the races still were suspicious of each other.
The Rockmen of Vrachos IV were mostly unknown on the Galactic stage before their crusades early in the 25th century, where they mounted a crusade against the other races of the galaxy in an effort to convert them to the rockman religion. In 2456, The Rocks invaded Zoltan, Engi, and Human-controlled frontier sectors, killing billions within the first day. This crusade tore through Zoltan, Human and Engi space alike, and eventually the three races united their navies into the Federated Navy again to fight against a common foe. The Rocks unfortunately managed to reach the homeworlds of the three races, and brutally dominated those planets. The state of emergency forced the remnants of the governments of the three races to merge into a 'Federation' of governments- because the races inside were still technically self-governing, yet they had a common superior power they answered to. It was around this time that many Slugs began to filter into the Federation from nebulas where the Rocks had been crusading earlier. The Slugs which the Federation had seen initially were criminals which were running from slug law enforcers, and therefore were why the Federation thought of slugs as criminals, low-lifes and liars. However the slugs which flooded into Federation space were mostly civilians fleeing the Rockmen crusade, but most were turned back at the borders. The Slugs which managed to enter were mostly thought of as scum, and it would take over a century for that prejudice to begin fading away. The Rockmen were slowly repulsed by the combined might of all the Federation Defence Pact's forces, and eventually were pushed back into borders resembling the currently existing ones. The Rockmen, impressed by this feat, accepted an unconditional surrender, and did not embark on further crusades. However, some converts and Rocks refused to give up crusading, and in continuing became the Lost Suns Pirate Clan, which aimed to continue the crusades and convert all of the galaxy to the Rockman Religion.
The Rock Wars proved to be the uniting force that the three races needed to band together into what is now known as the Federation.
Aftermath and the Golden Age
After the Rock Wars were won by the Federation, a new era of peace was ushered in. The Rocks retreated into their sectors, assuming an isolationist stance, save for a few who were trusting enough to come to the Federation. The Lost Suns, however, attempted to continue the crusades- striking from deep within Rock-controlled sectors, attacking Federation ships and outposts on the fringes of Federation space. The immediate threat of war and danger to their homeworlds averted, as part of a unified alliance- the Zoltan, the Engi, and the Humans felt a new-born sense of unity after their great war against one of the worst enemies that they had ever seen. However, this was not without cost. The Rocks had carved a bloody swathe through Zoltan-Controlled, Engi-Controlled, and Human-Controlled sectors, and those that remained were feeling the strain of a massive increase in resource and manpower demand after refugees fleeing the crusade travelled to their sectors in search of asylum. The Provisional Government- the same government which arose after the three races formed the 'Federated Government'- was hard-pressed to provide for the citizens. However, using technologies developed by all three races, such as Engi Drone Technology, Zoltan advances in medical technology and Human terraforming techniques, the three races managed to recover, and by 2450, they had managed to recover and regain their pre-war prestige, prosperity and progress.
Dissent in the Outer Regions
The Federation Civil War
The Federation Civil War started in 2294 as the Rebellion, formed from the Human Resistance Front, a human supremacist group dedicated to eradicating alien presence in the Federation. The Rebellion drove the Federation to the brink of collapse. It drove the Federation back to a single sector, the Last Stand, and the withdrawal of forces to defend it left hundreds of sectors unoccupied. This caused many sectors to form militias to protect themselves from the Rebellion, and those Militias still survive today, albeit merged under one banner as the Local Defence Militiamen. The Zoltan, fearful that the Rebellion would treat their race worse than the Rocks had during their crusade, closed off their borders and strictly monitored any and all ships near their sectors' borders in an effort to keep the Rebellion out. To discourage the Rebellion further, the Zoltan left the Federation and declared their neutrality.
The Last Stand and the Flagship
The war ended with the Galaxy's seven races uniting together to fight the Rebellion in a climactic battle in the Orion system- otherwise known as the Last Stand. The Hero of the Federation, captaining an old kestrel, marshaled the races into fighting with the Federation against a bloodthirsty Rebellion, hell-bent on exterminating aliens in a mass genocide in all of known space. Two races of legend appeared in the galaxy around this time- the Crystal, the old and proud ancestors of the Rock, who came with the purpose of assisting the Federation against the rebels, and the Lanius- who, even today, have uncertain allegiances.
This war created an industrial boom, with more jobs due to increased orders for ships, materiel etc. for the Federation’s war economy. As usual with industrial booms, some people benefitted and others did not. The number of unemployed decreased, but the minimum wage did not change at all. The big companies of the era, such as Ares Weapons Industries, Cygnus Security Solutions, or as it was known then Cygnus Energy Weapons, Tandili StarDrive and the Rhea Mining Company, benefitted from the war and eventually developed monopolies on their exports. However, the war did not benefit parts of the economy not necessary for the war effort. The war raised prices on materials like aluminium and iron for ‘non-essential industries’ which were primarily for civilians, limiting economic growth outside of the defence, agriculture and mining industries. The Federation also had to tax its citizens more in order to fund the war, and eventually ended up borrowing from banks in order to pay for the war. The Federation, at the war's conclusion, was left in massive debt, with limited economic growth and with more economic disparity.
The Federation after the Rebellion
The Federation was left with most of its leadership killed off or dead, and the new senate, formed in the Orion system (the new Capitol), was mostly businessmen, their puppets, or incompetent buffoons. Those who were competent were normally outspoken due to their comparatively small numbers. Corruption was, and still is, rife throughout the Federation. The Rebellion's aggressive takeover of beacons has resulted in billions of citizens being homeless or jobless. On some worlds the Federation is hard-pressed to provide even basic public services, and is struggling to recover. However, worlds in sectors that were hit relatively less enjoy the same or similar standards of living compared to pre-war standards. It also has resulted in a massive power gap forming. Corporations have taken over multiple sectors meant to be controlled by the Federation, and are the de-facto leaders. Some unoccupied sectors are the site of conflict between the newly militant and expansionist Zoltan, the Federation, and the Coalition, in a massive three-way conflict. The Rebellion was driven back to its strongholds and sectors they controlled- where they dug in and waged a defensive war, all the while building up forces to make another push. It could be said they're in a stronger position now than they were during the rebellion- a tough nut holding the Federation back, biding their time.
Government and Ideals
The Federation spans hundreds of sectors and is a democratic state which elects its members of office. These members of office are the ministers, who are responsible for such things such as Education, Energy, the Economy and the Federal Reserve, the Senators, who represent their planet or company within the senate, and finally the High Councillor who is the head of the government and has the final say about signing bills and proposals into law. The ‘Federation Dream’ is an ideal the Federation holds that all citizens will have access to cheap or free public services. However, the Federation before the war failed in this area because of the massive economic disparity that already existed within the Federation, the disruptive effects the Mantis-Federation War had on the Federation's Economy, along with rife corruption and a dysfunctional Senate that was too busy squabbling for power and filibustering. This made Civilian Militias the de facto power in many sectors where the Federation was the major power.
The Federation prefers strike craft, such fighters and frigates, performing precise strikes on enemy vessels, crippling systems and destroying key structural features. These attacks are supported by capital ships and bombards’ secondary weapons, which include ASB and artillery.
Federation Fleet Ships
The Federation Navy specialises in heavier capital ships such as heavy cruisers and Drone carriers - so light cruisers and corvettes are completely absent from Federation doctrine. Cruisers are considered ‘light’ in the general scheme of things as it is one of the lighter ships-of-the-line in the Federation fleet. The current ships-of-the-line in service with the Federation are the Indefatigable-class Battlecruiser, a heavy ship-of-the-line used in many roles ranging from Flagship to independent scouting, the Orion-class Fleet Carrier, most often used as a flagship, and the Illustrious-class Escort Carrier, which is used in fleets to provide basic fighter escort. The Frigates are heavy strike craft, but classified as fleet ships.The Federation specialises in different classes of ‘Frigates’. These include the standard Frigate, based on quick movement and heavy weapons, Suppressor Frigates using primarily stun/energy weapons to stun and disable enemy ships, and Bombards, which rely on their artillery to destroy enemy ships quickly and efficiently. Most of these are built upon modifying a single basic hull. one example is the prolific Pheasant-class Frigate built by Tandili StarDrive, which is thought of as the epitome of Federation Frigate Development, and is extremely popular with Navy captains who often need to perform solo missions. It has rooms which are able to equip many different types of systems and a reactor capable of powering them, It is reported that on the front lines, some captains have been able to equip as many as eight systems on their ship, ranging from a simple teleporter rig to Cloaking and Hacking- truly a testament to the adaptability of the Pheasant-class vessels.
From the Federation-mantis war and the Federation Civil War the Federation learned the values of boarding tactics- however, this is only attempted with small two-man teleports on relatively large ships, or large 4-man teleporters on Boarding Vessels, which are former dropships and shuttles.
Federation Fighter Craft
Learning from the mistakes of the past and applying lessons learnt from the ongoing Zoltan-Federation Cold War the Federation has redone their doctrine on their fighters. The failure of the Federation Scout during the Rebellion and against Zoltan ships during the Cold War made the Federation relegate it to patrol duties in Federation Territory. These include fighting as border patrol vessels, as Radar Pickets operating far from the front of any battle or as Electronic Warfare Vessels centered around quick movement and hacking. The Federation Bomber has been refitted and redesignated as the Raptor-class Fighter which are then split down into two different subcategories: Strike and Tactical fighters. Strike fighters are specifically designed to punch a hole in enemy defences and neutralise them with heavy kinetic weapons, while Tactical Fighters take on a space superiority role and are often seen escorting strike fighters. Tactical Fighters have fast-firing energy weaponry, such as burst lasers, hull lasers and ion cannons, while Strike Fighters have more kinetic/explosive oriented weapons, such as Flak or Missiles. Dedicated tactical fighter and strike fighters are currently in development.