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Starship Manufacturers

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 66
For as long as there have been starfarers exploring the galaxy, manufacturers have happily provided the latest starship designs. This section details dozens of manufacturers and many of their iconic starship designs. Below, you'll find smaller manufacturers dedicated to niche markets with smaller market shares. Beginning on page 68, you'll find major manufacturers, each of which includes a perk representing the company's style or specialization. Only a ship manufactured or significantly refitted by that company gains the perk, and a starship can have only a single manufacturer perk at a time.

ATech

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 68
Time-Tested, Dependable Vessels
Manufacturing Centers: Absalom Station, Akiton, Verces
Specialties: Reliable, sturdy vessels for a wide range of needs
Famous Models: Bulwark, Immortal, Resolute

ATech is a wholly owned subsidiary of the megacorporation AbadarCorp, although it was not created by the conglomerate. Pre-Gap records indicate that the company now known as ATech originated on the planet Golarion as a manufacturer of atmospheric vehicles such as jet aircraft and hovercars. The exact details of who or what financed such cutting-edge research is lost to time, but speculators have suggested that it may have taken an entire country devoted to technological advances, a league of individuals with extraordinary knowledge for their time, or even the cult of a lesser god. The exact details of AbadarCorp’s acquisition of ATech seem to have been hit particularly hard by the Gap. Rumors range from a simple buyout to a hostile takeover, and a few even dare to suggest corporate assassination—a suggestion quickly withdrawn by those concerned for their own safety. Regardless, this acquisition enabled AbadarCorp to expand its holdings far beyond its previous capacity. AbadarCorp renamed the starship manufacturer ATech and created its own fleet, eventually becoming one of the premier retail manufacturers in the Pact Worlds System.

In the modern age, ATech has been a go-to name for reliable vessels. Company policy insists that an ATech starship should be the best investment a customer can make. ATechs are made with care and precision, ensuring that the safety and security of a customer’s goods, crew, and passengers are a top priority. This has earned the company a customer base that includes exploration parties, merchant houses, and even the Stewards. ATech makes no distinctions between these groups and offers its products to any organization in good legal standing.

Perhaps one of ATech’s greatest achievements is the sheer volume of repair shops and shipyards it makes available to customers. It is the company’s goal to have at least one service center in every settlement where it has customers, so they can repair, refuel, and upgrade parts conveniently. In lucrative locations, ATech has built entire cities dedicated to manufacturing and repair, but even small outposts have a hangar and a few mechanics. In addition to frontier dangers, many of these outposts have recently experienced increased incident reports, leading ATech to suspect sabotage by its competitors.

To meet its high demand for talented labor, ATech routinely offers generous scholarships and fast-track programs to promising engineers across the galaxy, many of whom go on to develop new technologies or work on well-known vessels, adding to ATech’s prestige.

Manufacturer Perk: While physical durability is a top priority for ATech, the manufacturer has also identified digital security as a growing concern. On ATech starships, an anti-hacking system costs 2 BP (rather than 3 BP) to install and upgrade.

Blackwind Engineering

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 68
Macabre Military Might
Manufacturing Centers: Eox (Orphys, Zinhew)
Specialties: Archetypal Eoxian military vessels
Famous Models: Annihilator, Catacomb, Megalith, Sepulcher

When Pact Worlds citizens think about Eoxian starships, Blackwind Engineering dominates the imagination both visually and historically. The company made its mark on post-Gap records by supplying Eox’s most notorious and feared starships during the Magefire Assault, and its reputation has only grown over time.

Blackwind was founded sometime during the Gap. Like its fellow Eoxian manufacturers, Death’s Head and Thaumtech, Blackwind lost an enormous amount of corporate data during that period. This erasure devastated the company for years, and it wasn’t until the Magefire Assault in 7 ag that Blackwind made a comeback, debuting its now-infamous troop carriers and dreadnoughts.

The Veskarium truly learned to fear Blackwind ships at the Battle of Aledra. Catacomb dropships played a pivotal role, and Megalith dreadnoughts proved a worthy match for the mightiest Veskarium vessels. As a result of this victory, Blackwind rehabilitated its image in the eyes of Pact Worlds citizens, and the company saw a jump in profits as everyone in the system worked together against a common foe. Today, Blackwind ships are an accepted—and even admired—part of Pact Worlds history, with their red dome “eyes” and skeletal hulls featuring in the artistic depictions of many historic battles, and older models commonly appearing in museums. The Graven Repose, for example, rests at the Museum of Aerospace Heritage in Zo and is a popular tourist attraction.

Ships with bone-spur silhouettes have since become synonymous with Eoxian naval might. Blackwind ships are built for war and rarely accommodate living crews. Decommissioned military vessels have increased in popularity on the civilian market since the truce that ended the Silent War. The lack of traditional life support on these starship makes for spacious interiors, and they’re popular with enthusiasts due to their fearsome appearance. Buyers seek out the novelty of owning a “real” Eoxian warship, and many pay extra if the ship had a prestigious tour of duty.

Tesheda Nyral (LE female damaya lashunta vampire) is one of the few Eoxian CEOs who is not an elebrian. For all her deadly cunning, Nyral has no memory of her early life, how she emerged from the Gap as CEO, or what her prior goals had been. Yet few can deny Nyral’s subsequent success, though the recent peace has brought a slump to Blackwind’s sales. Reports say Nyral has been displeased by this, and there’s been a recent sharp increase in Blackwind ships acquired by the Corpse Fleet; rumor has it she’s selling to the exiles.

Manufacturer Perk: Blackwind ships are notoriously hostile towards living foes, and the company leans into this specialization. Reduce the BP cost to install anti-personnel weapons by 1, so long as the weapons used have the anti-biological trait

Blood Mountain Clans

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 69
Ancient Veskarium Shipbuilders
Manufacturing Centers: Conqueror’s Forge, Vesk Prime
Specialties: Military fighters and attack craft
Famous Models: Devastator, Dmolangari, Mauler, Predator

Based on the Veskarium capital world of Vesk Prime, the Blood Mountain Clans (BMC) trace their heritage back to before the Gap, when vesk inhabited only their own home world. The Veskarium had conquered all of Vesk Prime and looked to neighboring planets for its next conquest. Betting on a future beyond a single world, several vesk warrior clans inhabiting the Doshkoraz Mountains around the volcanic Blood Mountain joined forces and created an aerospace consortium that would catapult the Veskarium into space. The Blood Mountain Clans built the first spaceships that carried vesk to other worlds, and they have remained a major force in the Veskarium military-industrial complex ever since.

Now one of the Veskarium’s most powerful corporations, the BMC prides itself on its warrior heritage, producing military starships for the Veskarium as well as for private sale. Based on Pact Worlds designs, the BMC built the Veskarium’s first Drift engine, which took the vesk empire to the stars and into interstellar war with the Pact Worlds and the Swarm.

The BMC fared well in both the Silent War and the Swarm War, as its famous Mauler fighter was the Veskarium military’s primary starfighter, used to great effect against both enemy factions. The core design of the BMC Mauler has remained virtually unchanged for almost 300 years, though its components have undergone regular updates. The Mauler remains the standard fighter of the Veskarium fleet, and the starship has been so successful and is so well known that many vesk use “mauler” as a synonym for any starfighter, whether or not it was built by the BMC.

The BMC’s history and the Mauler’s success have given the company a reputation for fierceness in both its corporate behavior and its starships’ combat performance, a belief enhanced by the tendency of enthusiastic vesk pilots to ram their Maulers into opponents’ ships in overzealous or last-ditch attacks. As a result, BMC ships are widely regarded as good ramming vessels, and ramming prows (page 16) are a common weapon on larger BMC ships like the Devastator (page 111). The Mauler’s usefulness for ramming has also made the fighter a favorite among the nihilistic Cult of the Devourer. Cultists can’t usually acquire Maulers by legitimate means, however, instead resorting to theft, piracy, or hastily constructed shell corporations. BMC’s leadership now faces a dilemma: how to prevent association with the Cult of the Devourer from tarnishing an otherwise famous brand.

Manufacturer Perk: BMC ships are known for packing a punch when they ram other vessels. When using the ramming speed pilot stunt, a starship with a BMC frame is considered one size category larger when determining collision damage for a successful ramming attack.

Compiler Enterprises

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 69
Anacite Explorers
Manufacturing Centers: Aballon (Horse Eye Orbital Plate, Pursuit, Striving)
Specialties: Colony ships and explorers
Famous Models: AEV, Group Defense Frigate, Those Who Are

As the philosophies of the two major sects of anacites on Aballon took shape, the group known as Those Who Become began to reach out to the stars. Believing it their destiny to take up the mantle of their creators, Those Who Become strive to colonize distant worlds. However, no existing companies were able to meet their specific needs on the scale they required. Few companies produce enough ships to transport an entire colony into the unknown without a known destination or expected transit time. These anacites tried purchasing ships from multiple manufacturers to assemble a fleet, but it still wasn’t enough. However, the time they spent refitting vessels to suit their needs taught them a great deal about starship construction. They embraced their new expertise, and the first ships sailed off Compiler Enterprises (CompEnt)’s relatively small production line shortly thereafter. Today, CompEnt is the premiere manufacturer of large vessels designed for long-term operation with few—or no—opportunities to return home for maintenance.

Those Who Become operate the company with a design philosophy influenced by their belief that they are the inheritors of the First Ones. Large colony ships and long-term deep space exploration vessels make up the bulk of the company’s production. Unlike starship manufacturers that equip ships with a fixed suite of expansion bays to serve the ships’ intended purposes, CompEnt ships boast modular expansion bays that allow for heavy modification. A new starship’s bays are left empty, enabling the buyer to configure the ship however they like. These cavernous interiors make CompEnt vessels very popular as smuggler ships, cargo haulers, and passenger transports.

Being of Aballonian design, CompEnt’s ships have a simple, practical look. The ships’ hulls are polished to a shine but are otherwise unadorned beyond the hull markings, giving them a feel of rugged accessibility and suggesting they’re just the sort of ships to help colonists accomplish their dreams. In addition to the usual customization options, CompEnt also builds ships with unusual materials on request. Rumors say that the company is involved in manufacturing the golden commerce barges of the Prophets of Kalistrade—no surprise, given most of those opulent starships originate in Aballon’s Horse Eye Orbital Plate shipyards. But other reports suggest this lucrative contract was in fact stolen from CompEnt by another ruthless (and so far unknown) corporate rival, and that CompEnt is debating how ruthless its own response should be. Regardless, its ships also support large complements while minimizing the requirements for each crew member and providing a great deal of space, which certainly fulfills the requirements of followers of the Prophecies and other luxury clients.

Manufacturer Perk: External expansion bays installed on CompEnt starships cost only 2 BP each (rather than 3 BP).

Dashadz Industries

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 66
Headquartered in the Veskarium, Dashadz Industries originally focused on heavy warships. However, its stakeholders foresaw the imminent treaty with the Pact Worlds, and began pivoting towards civilian vessels. The company refit its previous fleet, charging exorbitant fees to transform warships into comfortable—albeit heavily armed—transport vehicles. It now also builds smaller ships that, while not meant for warfare, are capable of it, such as Griffon salvage vessels (page 103) that can disassemble a ship just as easily as they cut through space junk.

Early in the transition to its new business model, Dashadz employed skittermanders as cheap labor. However, the company found that these creatures had a very different understanding of safety features, resulting in dangerous surprises for travelers and crews alike. The company has yet to work out all of these bugs but has quashed most of the negative press and now excludes skittermanders from most engineering positions. Instead, Dashadz has turned to pahtra, ijtikri, and other designers to ensure the comfort (and safety) of their guests.

Death’s Head

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 70
Grim Manufacturers
Manufacturing Centers: Eox (the Atraskien Shelf, Orphys)
Specialties: Mass-produced undead starships
Famous Models: Charon, Necroglider, Phantasm

Death’s Head is defined by massive production runs. Its low prices and easy availability inspire voracious demand, but the true cost is paid inside its nightmarish factories. Shipyards that resemble prison camps more than assembly lines swarm with monstrous laborers. Undead work grueling hours that would have broken their living counterparts, all while navigating hazardous conditions and industrial accidents. Death’s Head takes full advantage of its undead workforce to cut every available cost and corner. Still, undeath offers no guarantee of safety from machinery mishaps, so the company always has vacancies to fill.

Like Blackwind and Thaumtech, Death’s Head was founded during the Gap but lost substantial data from that time. Rather than reverse-engineer the company’s own technology, its leadership chose a faster approach. They took the small proof-of-concept models found in the company’s hangars, expanded on the designs just enough for mass production, and then released hordes of cheap, single-occupancy ships to sell by the squadron. Though these hastily assembled fighters and shuttles were legendarily shoddy, they reached the post-Gap market faster than their Eoxian competitors; Death’s Head has ridden this momentum for over two centuries.

Death’s Head caters to undead clientele, which makes cutting costs even easier. Its ships have no need for life support or environmental controls, and though unpopular with living customers, the company is a top manufacturer among Eoxians. The Necroglider is the sixteenth iteration of Death’s Head’s original single-occupancy design and boasts the lowest price tag in the history of the model. Numerous bone sages have longstanding contracts that ensure a near-endless supply of Phantasms for their forces. Large-frame Charon freighters are popular with merchants willing to trade life support for extra cargo space, and Death’s Head pays traders for bodies to reanimate in exchange for discounted maintenance costs. The company is careful to keep these arrangements legal, but the Stewards frequently stop these ships for “surprise” inspections.

Perigost Zephilem (NE male elebrian necrovite) is the CEO of Death’s Head. Considered eccentric even among necrovites, he was once the bone sage of a necropolis called Delthani. Strangely, Delthani has been missing since the Gap ended. Zephilem has no idea what happened to his former domain, and he endlessly pursues information that might reveal its fate. His rivals know how to exploit his obsessions, and they’ve done so in the past to divide his attentions.

Manufacturer Perk: As a dubious benefit of their haphazard wiring, certain countermeasures are easy to install in Death’s Head ships. Reduce the BP cost to install shock grid computer countermeasures by 1.

Guttertooth Processing Company

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 66
Founded by half-orcs disillusioned with working for the drow corporations of Apostae, Guttertooth Processing Company is a collective founded to negotiate fair deals and protect its employees from drow exploitation and retaliation. Guttertooth operations are hidden in the caverns of Apostae and remain a constant thorn in the side of the drow, as the half-orcs slip through every security precaution the elves create.

Guttertooth builds specialized ships and trains crews to terraform inhospitable planets. Its vessels often appear crude, with barely forged exteriors and clunky profiles. However, these designs are purposeful, concealing sophisticated machinery and convincing would-be aggressors to attack more promising prey. In addition to ship-building, Guttertooth is also quietly amassing a vast storehouse of weapons available for the next species they encounter who needs help breaking free from oppression.

Hivonyx Industries

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 70
Pacifist Artisans
Manufacturing Centers: Verces
Specialties: Defensive and high-speed vessels, guest accommodations
Famous Models: Ambassador, Diplomat, Titan Hauler

Hivonyx Industries got its start far from the Pact Worlds. The company’s founders were shirrens from Ilemchuuva who, in 64 ag, used some of the shirrens’ first Drift-capable starships to escape the Swarm and explore the galaxy. Six shirrens became lead mechanics, carefully maintaining the small fleet through its interstellar journey into the unknown, and all eventually reached the Pact Worlds. After convincing the inhabitants there that they meant no harm, the shirrens settled on Verces. The six engineers went from simply maintaining the original fleet to manufacturing their own ships, and Hivonyx was born. These ships were very different aesthetically from anything in the Pact Worlds at the time, featuring insect-like exteriors and colorful paint jobs.

The organization, born from devout Hylaxians, has maintained the Forever Queen’s values throughout its existence, promoting peace, diplomacy, and first contact. Hivonyx takes this mission so seriously that every starship it manufactures comes with software countermeasures that prevent its weapons from firing unless the ship has taken damage, ensuring that any shots fired are strictly in self-defense. Their original models, in fact, featured no weapons at all, and Hivonyx continues to produce many unarmed starships. These colorful, insectile, and easily recognizable ships were attacked as easy prey whenever they left Verces, however, and while their clientele wanted to support the pacifist mission, they found their own safety at risk. Hivonyx relented to protect its own customers and now includes modest weapons on most of its starships. While no military would ever outfit its soldiers with Hivonyx craft, these ships are armed well enough to stage a fighting withdrawal. Some non-Hylaxian customers get hackers to remove the software modifications that prevent first strikes, even though doing so voids the ships’ factory-issued warranty.

Hivonyx is working to develop Drift-capable technology that doesn’t involve pulling pieces from other planes into the Drift, which some Hylaxians consider to be a violent act. After all, ruins, homes, and even entire settlements have been forcibly relocated to the Drift, inflicting unrecorded trauma on their inhabitants, who find themselves lost on the mysterious plane and threatened by Drift natives, various outsiders, and other transplanted refugees. Hivonyx engineers say they’re close to a breakthrough. A group of Triune followers, however, believe this technological breakthrough would be a heretical subversion of Triune’s gift, which they see as bringing cultures together in unexpected ways. They’ve resolved to stop Hivonyx at any cost.

Manufacturer Perk: Hivonyx ships often carry important visitors, so the guest quarters are built to be more spacious and comfortable; common quarters house 10 passengers, good quarters house six passengers, and luxurious quarters house four passengers.

Idari Crucible Works

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 71
The Kasathan Golden Fleet
Manufacturing Centers: Idari
Specialties: Kasathan starships
Famous Models: Millennia, Vanserai, Voidrunner

Kasathan culture prioritizes stability and community over all else. Its traditions rely on the wisdom of the past to plot a course for the future. When the people of the Idari arrived in the Pact Worlds, they discovered a society technologically superior in many fields and struggled to adapt to Pact Worlds capitalism while preserving their traditional values. To integrate into Pact Worlds economies while providing a means to support the people of the Idari, the Doyenate converted the Crucible into a corporation. The corporation’s profits are held in trust and managed for the good of the Idari and the people who live there. They named this corporation Idari Crucible Works.

Originally, the Crucible was not intended as a profitable enterprise. Its purpose was to manufacture and maintain kasathan ships during the Idari’s long voyage across the vast space of the galaxy, and it was run by the Doyenate for the good of the kasathan people. As kasathas integrated into Pact Worlds society, they leveraged the efficient and high-quality manufacturing capabilities of the Crucible into an immense profit engine for the Idari.

Despite being outmatched by the combined technologies of the Pact Worlds, the Idari’s advancements in energy-to-matter conversion, energy efficiency, and modular ship designs far surpassed anything the Pact Worlds had developed. Kasathas had developed technology to convert pure energy into a crystal-like matter, which they could further form into nearly any other basic material, alloy, or complex component. Many of the Pact Worlds’ innovations in energy-to-matter conversion are founded on this technology. However, the technology found within the Crucible is far superior to that available elsewhere and is still a highly guarded and profitable secret.

To insulate Idari Crucible Works from external corruption and nontraditional influences, the Doyenate formed many smaller corporations through which clients and corporate partners interact. These subsidiary firms also serve as a buffer between off-worlders and the Idari’s social traditions, which can be a source of consternation for non-kasathas. While most corporations stress competition with others, Idari Crucible Works instead stresses mutual assistance and cooperation. The Doyenate is forever playing the long game, forsaking lucrative short-term opportunities that would jeopardize long-term gain and stability. Of the non-kasathan employees within Idari Crucible Works, the vast majority are androids.

Manufacturer Perk: The unique golden coating on Crucible vessels, called esaris, protects the crew from radiation. If the ship is hit by an effect with the irradiate special property, treat the irradiate as one level weaker; irradiate (high) becomes irradiate (medium), irradiate (medium) becomes irradiate (low), and irradiate (low) has no effect.

Imperial Foundry

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 66
New Thespera houses the shipyards of Imperial Foundry, the primary manufacturer of starships in the Azlanti Empire. Imperial Foundry builds small cruisers to infiltrate blockades, as well as large and well-armed transports for both troops and royalty. On these ships, other species serve as crew, marines, and low-level engineers, but the empire refuses to let non-Azlanti serve as officers.

Imperial Foundry builds these ships according to principles of sacred geometry. Weaponry on these vessels is hidden beneath the hull to preserve their magically empowered symmetry, giving no indication of the danger concealed within. The Sovereign Dominator (page 121) stands as a testament to these principles— this beautiful starship can subjugate entire planetary systems.

Infernex, Inc.

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 67
Owned by the Hellknights and orbiting the Pact Worlds’ sun, this shipyard builds the massive black citadels and austere starships used to carry out official Hellknight functions. These vessels make only limited concessions to human needs but include plenty of space for imprisonment, interrogation, and punishment. The Hellknights reassure governments worried about the presence of these moving citadels that only those who break the law must fear Hellknight justice. More than one troublesome prisoner has disappeared forever within an Infernex, Inc. starship, where minions of Hell such as imps serve alongside Hellknights as crew, performing basic maintenance and even enchanting the ship’s components and weapons.

Inheritorworks

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 67
A subsidiary of Sanjaval, Inheritorworks exclusively builds Iomedaean ships. Inheritorworks and the Iomedaean fleet are headquartered on Absalom Station, a convenient rallying point that enables deployment at a moment’s notice. These ships evoke places of worship; even the fearsome attack vessels appear to be made from pristine marble adorned with stained-glass windows displaying the holy acts of Iomedae. The company screens applicants to strongly favor Iomedaean candidates, but contractors often receive special dispensation, giving infiltrators the rare chance to slip through the ranks.

Kevolari Collective

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 71
Maximum Utility
Manufacturing Centers: Elindrae
Specialties: Industrial-yet-comfortable designs in large quantity at reasonable costs
Famous Models: K-51 Sky Fisher, Paramount, Steadfast, Venture

The Kevolari Collective is the largest of the Castrovelian starship manufacturers and was originally based in the Gulf of Legions, where the formian industrial complex historically manufactured sea vessels. But 30 years ago, the Collective shifted its starship manufacturing to Castrovel’s moon, Elindrae, a concession in the shirren-brokered peace treaty that ended the war between formians and lashuntas. This move required the founding of a new secondary hive on Elindrae, as well as the installation of life support and artificial gravity in the newly constructed hive tunnels that now permeate the moon.

Paramilitary groups, explorers, and transportation companies consistently seek out the Kevolari Collective because of the company’s highly efficient, large-scale manufacturing facilities. Indeed, the Kevolari Collective delivers hundreds of military and corporate starships each year for use by organizations throughout the Pact Worlds. The Collective specializes in large orders for fleets of dozens or even hundreds of identical ships. Given the Collective’s reputation for delivering on time and on budget, demand for its services often outstrips its capacity, much to the consternation of its non-formian competition. Many companies have attempted to emulate the Collective’s business model, but none have yet matched their coordination.

To maintain production efficiency, the Kevolari Collective designs its starships to be standardized and simple, engineered to provide good quality and high value. This results in industrial-yet-comfortable designs at prices substantially lower than those of most other starship manufacturers. The Kevolari Collective achieves this efficiency via a manufacturing process that includes workers with cybernetic enhancements optimized for specific assembly stations. Instead of adapting its manufacturing systems to customize designs for customers, the Kevolari Collective subcontracts to other starship manufactures, such as Ringworks and ATech, which take delivery of newly manufactured starship frames and complete any required customization. This enables customers to take advantage of the Collective’s economies of scale while also satisfying specialized demands.

The standardization of Kevolari Collective starships makes maintenance, repair, and training simple and reduces the variety of spare parts that need to be kept on hand. As such, Kevolari Collective starships provide immediate savings and long-term value. From the flagships of the Steward’s Overwatch fleet to long-haul transports and explorers transiting the Vast, Kevolari Collective starships provide maximum utility for minimum credits.

Manufacturer Perk: The efficiency of Kevolari designs reduces the cost of the base frame by BP equal to the ship’s size category (Tiny = 1, Small = 2, Medium = 3, etc.); however, the cost of each weapon mounted increases by 1 BP.

Klokworx Industries

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 67
Unlike state-owned Azlanti manufacturers, Klokworx Industries does not operate within the empire’s capital. Instead, it builds and outfits ships from a moon where the state’s influence and interest are limited to ordering specialized ships. Klokworx avoids most elitist and discriminatory Azlanti practices. Its ships combine the state’s principles of sacred geometry with the best technological advances of other species. This openness extends to their engineers and crews; many diverse species hold captain or officer status aboard Klokworx ships, fostering a strong sense of community and loyalty.

Klokworx specializes in smaller drone and scout starships, such as the Prism—a starship with a crew of only two—and the Drone, an unmanned ship used to confuse the sensors of other vessels. Those who encounter these tiny vessels rarely have an opportunity to capture them intact and study them further due to their built-in self-destruct systems.

Multifold Industries

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 72
Diversity And Automation
Manufacturing Centers: Aballon (01, Pursuit, Striving)
Specialties: Highly automated ships for custom needs
Famous Models: G7 Autohauler, Seedship

One day, the creators of the anacites—the First Ones—will return. Until then, Those Who Wait collect and store knowledge, doing so through automated exploration and cooperation with other species, primarily through Multifold Industries. The company’s origin lies in the arrival of non-anacites on Aballon. As more and more off-worlders arrived, many were assigned to starship design, construction, and maintenance. Those Who Wait established Multifold to support this growing workforce. The company employs individuals from many different species, though androids rapidly became a plurality. Now, Multifold’s status as an industrial leader in diversity is a point of pride widely embraced at the company.

Multifold’s primary specialization is automated starships, which has led to investment in artificial and virtual intelligences, or A/VI. Ships that can travel with minimal or no crew are broadly useful, with more space for cargo and equipment and lower overhead costs for wages and life support. Crewless vessels can also be used on missions considered too risky for living crews, such as exploration into systems with known Swarm activity or that have been colonized by the Azlanti Empire, or on missions that are simply so unpleasant or boring that no sapient creature would willingly participate. Because the needs of an exploration drone in a hostile environment are significantly different from those of a cargo hauler navigating busy trade routes, the A/VI in most Multifold craft are built to order. But the rapidly growing demand for these vessels and their A/VI technology has prompted Multifold to radically expand its construction and research and development facilities.

However, this emphasis on automation has created controversy for the company. Multifold’s rapid growth has negatively impacted adjacent industries, and now pilots, mechanics, miners, and navigators are having a harder time finding work. The company faces both increasingly aggrieved unions representing a wide array of professions as well as hostile competitors about to be made obsolete because of Multifold’s so-called “launch and leave” vessels.

Multifold ships vary widely in appearance. Unusual floor plans and a diverse workforce influence its ship designs. Two examples of the same starship model, built at different facilities, may be mechanically identical, but their hull and interior decoration may be radically different. The company has no unifying aesthetic, instead advertising its craft as being as unique as its many customers.

Manufacturer Perk: The computers aboard a Multifold Industries starship are especially conducive to computerized assistance. Decrease the total cost of any virtual intelligence installed in a Multifold starship by 2 BP.

Nebulor Outfitters

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 67
Based in the Diaspora, Nebulor Outfitters has a ragtag nature, representative of the folk who live on the outskirts of Pact space. This company doesn’t specialize in any one type of ship, instead taking commissions from the highest bidder and scavenging enough scrap to fulfill any contract. Nebulor doesn’t care who buys its ships or serves as crew, gladly working with pirates, smugglers, adventurers, or even the occasional high-ranking official seeking discretion.

Nebulor provides customizable, multi-purpose ships like the Starhopper and Skymedic (page 84) that serve in many roles, from simple transportation to piracy. These rugged vessels hold up under fire and are technologically advanced enough to protect themselves. Nebulor seeks to hire disenfranchised engineers and technologists who bring unique knowledge and expertise to the table—especially those who have no compunction against cutting corners or installing the occasional “special modification.”

Norikama Syndicate

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 72
Opportunistic Copycats Striving For Respect
Manufacturing Centers: Akiton, Norikama, Vesk-8
Specialties: Knockoff starships and low-class luxury
Famous Models: Defrex, Dropship, Reliant, Valkyrie

Founded in the aftermath of the Gap by destitute vesk siblings Jinjaya and Ozoroz, Norikama Syndicate has grown to become one of the most pervasive vesk corporations in the Pact Worlds. Favored by civilians, mercenaries, pirates, and vagabonds alike, Norikama Syndicate produces affordable, battle-ready starships with comfortable interiors—all knockoffs of the hottest ships on the market.

Originally a salvage company, Norikama Syndicate got its start collecting wreckage from Veskarium battles and selling scrap back to the original manufacturers. It soon discovered rebuilding ships from parts was far more profitable, and the Syndicate built its first factory on the planet Norikama.

When war between the Veskarium and Pact Worlds came to an end, easily attainable parts became scarce and the Syndicate was forced to adapt to survive. Refocusing on sales to the general public, it found its fortune creating knockoff luxury interiors with imitation materials, housed within intimidating, brutish-looking starship hulls. To keep up with demand, Norikama Syndicate opened factories in low-rent regions on Vesk-8 and Akiton. Dangerous work environments have led to countless on-site injuries, and critics insist there’s more blood than oil going into Norikama ships. It’s also common knowledge that the Syndicate purchases starship parts with no questions asked, which has added to the company’s notoriety.

Despite their popularity among budget-conscious consumers, most affluent citizens consider owning Norikama ships unbecoming. Many major corporations foster this sentiment, releasing denigrating statements and media meant to showcase Norikama’s inferiority. Small corporations, however, often take the opposite approach, attaching their names to the Norikama knockoffs of their own ships at every opportunity to drive sales and attention to their original, high-end models.

Veskarium citizens overwhelmingly disdain the Norikama Syndicate. Considering it a den of scavengers that steal from the honored dead, military manufacturers look down on the corporation, while the government considers its work inferior. To the average vesk, the Norikama Syndicate is a cliché joke, a worthless export that foreigners have inexplicably latched on to. Seemingly immortal, the company’s founders continue to steer Norikama Syndicate into the future with a top-secret project promised to “alter destiny.” Though the project’s launch date draws near, nothing has been leaked to the media, causing some to question what the ageless siblings have planned, and how far they’re willing to go to keep it quiet.

Manufacturer Perk: The Norikama Syndicate can install luxurious crew quarters for allies and employees at a cost of 3 BP rather than 5, using imitation materials in place of a more expensive finish.

Opulos Corporation

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 73
Purveyors Of Extreme Luxury
Manufacturing Centers: Verces (Athano)
Specialties: Personal yachts, cruise liners, and other extreme luxury vessels
Famous Models: Cruiser, Opulence, Overqueen

Perhaps the oldest surviving aethership manufacturer, Opulos Corporation began as a family business that built aetherships for the God-Vessels, the ancient verthani priest caste. Dorin Opulos was an Athano sailor and sea captain who combined artistic talent with engineering sense. Long before the Gap, each aethership was a unique work of art that glorified its God-Vessel clients’ patron deities. A few of these original aetherships still survive, turned into flying museums or refit with Drift technology; diligent (and lucky) bargain hunters may even be able to find one of these legendary ships rusting away in an Akiton junkyard, unrecognized.

But as Vercite culture shifted away from the old caste structure, Opulos reinvented itself as a maker of extreme luxury starships. Shortly after the Signal, the Opulos family went public, opening the corporation to investors and shareholders. They created a board of directors that—while still dominated by Opulos family members—also includes worker representatives, industry experts, and safety advocates. The company then launched the Opulence line, a series of highly customizable personal yachts for the fabulously wealthy. The Opulence was at the heart of an enticing advertising campaign that popularized the company’s brand throughout the burgeoning Pact Worlds, and the success of this new starship enabled Opulos Corporation to springboard into the cruise line market, which it has since come to dominate. The company’s new Overqueen line is an alternative to the Drift Cruiser aimed at non-humanoid markets, equipped with a wide variety of customizable living quarters and amenities that serve every species from astrazoans to wrikreechees. Opulos is the only major Vercite starship manufacturer that isn’t located on Skydock; the company has clung to its traditional home in Athano, where the old aethership construction yards are still preserved as a historical site, with tour buses escorting visitors there from the beautiful new shipyard facilities constructed on the shore of Riversea. Unfortunately, the isolation of this location makes it potentially vulnerable to corporate warfare, and Opulos recently lost its security chief to an explosion.

Manufacturer Perk: Opulos starships can install 2 Guest Quarters for a total of 1 BP and 1 PCU (instead of 1 BP and 1 PCU each) and Luxurious Crew Quarters cost only 4 BP instead of 5.

Redshift Revolution

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 73
Stylish Racers
Manufacturing Centers: Verces (Skydock)
Specialties: Challenge ships, high-performance civilian shuttles, and cargo haulers
Famous Models: Pleasure Sail, Skyhook Serenade, X Series

Like many Vercite starship manufacturers, Redshift Revolution predates the Gap and has worked out of the same berths in Skyhook since long before the rest of the Pact Worlds developed interstellar flight. The company is widely considered hidebound and traditional, clinging to past glories, but there is a real revolution taking place within the firm that customers are beginning to notice.

For most of its existence, Redshift Revolution based its success on luxuriously comfortable pleasure craft, mostly aimed at rich individuals with a sense of antique style. To this day, its vessels keep to the old aethership aesthetic, with brass fittings, velvet upholstery, and machinery designed to evoke class and distinction while concealing its functional controls. But comfort, as they say at Redshift, is cheap; it’s speed that costs credits, and Redshift Revolution’s engineers have spent centuries tuning thrusters and Drift engines to minimize travel times—even as passengers relax in style.

But the Absalom Run changed all that. This race, which occurs every 3 years and follows a course from Verces to Absalom Station and back, used to be the place where Redshift proved its stellar reputation, and the halls of Revolution HQ in Skydock are lined with trophies from this race and its annual qualifying competitions: the Trans-Pact Tour, the Inner World Classic, the Liavaran Ring Regatta, and others. But for over a decade now, no Redshift Revolution vessel has won the Absalom Run, instead finishing behind Terminator racers. The shame and humiliation at Redshift has thrown the company’s management into turmoil and created an opening for a new generation of engineers and inventors hungry to take the company in a new direction.

This cabal of young mechanics and charismatic executives, led by Selcora Grase (CG female Verthani), took over the X Series of racing craft, then threw away every established design to start anew. Grase recruited hand-picked iconoclasts from throughout the Pact Worlds and Near Space, including everything from physicists and material chemists to garage mechanics and ex-convicts. The result has been a promising run of experimental high-speed vessels, including the X-61—which was favored to win the last Absalom Run until a mysterious system failure forced the team to withdraw—and the even faster X-62 (page 85). But the success of Grase’s team has drawn ire from Redshift’s old-fashioned corporate board, which has managed to fire much of her staff. Grase now needs a new pilot and crew for the next qualifying race, or she will be forced to withdraw.

Manufacturer Perk: A Redshift Revolution starship can use standard navigation to go into orbit or land in 1 hour, travel point-to-point on a planet in 1d3 hours, reach a satellite in 1d6 hours, and travel in-system in 1d4+2 days.

Ringworks Industries

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 74
Practical Luxury
Manufacturing Centers: Verces (Skydock)
Specialties: Accessible designs for those who can’t otherwise afford Vercite-level luxury
Famous Models: Peacebringer, Sentinel, Specter, Wanderer

Ringworks Industries is one of the oldest starship manufacturers in the Pact Worlds, and its starships are the measuring stick by which many others are tested. Historians estimate the company predates the Gap by several centuries, though records are sparse. Ringworks helped pioneer interplanetary exploration with its original aethership designs, launched from the ancient Skydock space platform in geosynchronous orbit above Verces. The space elevator in the stalk connecting Skydock to the surface of Verces allowed Ringworks to easily transport heavy machinery and ship-building materials out of the planet’s gravity well and into orbit, where large-scale starship production could more readily take place. Ringworks grew and diversified its product line as demand for interplanetary trade increased; Ringworks Industries is now synonymous with space travel throughout the Pact Worlds.

Unlike other Vercite starship manufacturers, Ringworks eschewed opulent starship designs aimed at flagrant displays of status and luxury, instead focusing on making starships more practical and accessible. Corporate historians are unsure how the company chose this strategy, but it has been in place at Ringworks since the Gap and survives to this day. What Ringworks designs lack in terms of luxurious accommodations, they make up for with speed and maneuverability. Ringworks blends the sleek aerodynamics of atmospheric aircraft with the durability and survivability of orbital spacecraft; the company’s frames are preferred by those who need fast transport and support starships that can handle themselves in a fight.

It’s not unusual to see Ringworks starships still in service 200 or even 300 years after their original manufacture date. Ringworks employs highly refined classic designs that have survived the test of time, with only subtle changes evident between production years. This longevity has created a very strong secondary market for Ringworks starships, with collectors often purchasing early models and retrofitting them with modern communications and navigation technology while leaving much of the original propulsion and maneuvering systems intact. Depending on the significance of events recorded in a ship’s long-term logs, these retrofitted ships can sell for more than newly manufactured versions, with some particularly famous wartime models going for a fortune in credits.

Manufacturer Perk: Starships manufactured by Ringworks are so common that parts and trained mechanics abound in the Pact Worlds. Reduce the credit and UPB cost for repairs by 10% (to a minimum of 1 credit or UPB per point of damage); reduce the time required for repairs by 1 hour (to a minimum of 1 hour); and reduce the time required to refit the starship by 1 day (to a minimum of 1 day).

Sanjaval Spaceflight Systems

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 74
Commercial Spaceframe Manufacturer
Manufacturing Centers: Akiton, Sun (Lucent Shipyards), Triaxus
Specialties: Commercial spaceframes and cargo vessels
Famous Models: Redsun, Vagabond

Sanjaval Spaceflight Systems emerged from the Gap already a leader in Akiton’s aerospace industry. The company was a major manufacturer of sublight spaceship engines fueled with thasteron, the primary fuel used by most space vessels in the Golarion system before the advent of Drift travel. The thasteron boom made Sanjaval a household name on Akiton (and made the company billions of credits), but when Drift technology appeared only a few years later, the subsequent bust devastated the industry. Sanjaval managed to weather the thasteron crash by diversifying its products and investments—particularly by designing and manufacturing its own spaceframes that could be used for either sublight vessels or the new Drift-capable ships— and by signing an exclusive contract with the church of Iomedae to build starships for its nascent navy.

Today, Sanjaval is one of only a few companies with a substantial division for manufacturing thasteron-fueled sublight thrusters (it also controls a handful of Akiton’s surviving and viable thasteron mines), but it remains a powerful and influential corporation in the Pact Worlds. Sanjaval’s primary business is the production of starship spaceframes for commercial use— especially explorers, transports, and freighters of various sizes— and countless merchant ships, free traders, and cargo haulers in the Pact Worlds are built on Sanjaval frames. In addition, Sanjaval produces its own line of popular cargo ships like the Redsun and the Vagabond.

Diversification was the key to Sanjaval’s survival after the thasteron crash, and it remains a major part of its corporate strategy. Sanjaval’s original contract with the Iomedaean navy has evolved into a profitable partnership, and the company continues to build Iomedaean ships through a dedicated subsidiary called Inheritorworks (page 67). From its corporate headquarters in Akiton’s Hivemarket, Sanjaval also manufactures and sells starship thrusters, guided missiles and torpedoes for starships, and gyrojet firearms, among other products. Akiton is a difficult environment in which to do business due to its harsh weather and lawless nature, so Sanjaval relies mostly on indigenous ysoki, hykli, and ikeshti accustomed to these conditions.

Although the company does not make its own line of Drift engines, its research and development division at Lucent Shipyards in the Burning Archipelago is engaged in cutting-edge experiments in interplanar travel. Sanjaval recently began sponsoring colonization efforts in the Vast, and it is currently developing a new transport/freighter tentatively called the Sanjaval Galaxy Nomad to replace the aging Vagabond model.

Manufacturer Perk: Sanjaval manufactures a wide variety of interchangeable service modules that can be easily swapped out as needed. Refitting a starship with a modular Sanjaval expansion bay takes half the usual time (minimum 1 day).

Sov-El

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 67
Elves are haunted by the past. Betrayed in an event they no longer remember, elves have become very isolated, and most refuse to leave their homes on Sovyrian. Sov-El, a mysterious elven corporation, is the only widely known manufacturer of elven starships.

While many manufacturers build their vessels for a single purpose, such as transportation or war, Sov-El accommodates elven isolationist tendencies with sleek but immense ships that replicate Castrovel’s environmental wonders, even reproducing beloved rooms of elvish homes, complete with scenic views. It’s rare for non-elves to serve on these ships, and the elves who fly them rarely leave them, except when forced to by necessity or emergency. Sov-El continues to churn out bigger and better starship weaponry as well, ensuring that no one disturbs the peaceful solitude its elven clientele desires.

Starhive

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 75
Standing Against The Swarm
Manufacturing Centers: Akiton, Nchak
Specialties: Shirren fighting ships
Famous Models: Drone, Raptor, Vespiar

Starhive formed about a hundred years after shirrens first arrived in the Pact Worlds, splitting away from Hivonyx Industries because of a fundamental difference of philosophy. Many shirrens feared the Swarm would find its way to the Pact Worlds, and they wanted to be ready for armed resistance. They felt that unarmed starships were fine for merchants and explorers, but that it would take heavy weaponry to stop the Swarm. But Hivonyx leaders maintained the company’s pacifist stance, so a large group of shirren employees split off to form Starhive and make battle-ready starships. The first Starhive shipyard was founded on Akiton, though the company almost went under before establishing its own supply chain on the planet. Akitonian businesses aren’t always friendly to competitors, and existing starship manufacturers leaned hard on their suppliers not to sell to the new company. A few supply chain managers at Hivonyx— sympathetic to the Starhive cause—helped out their former employees with contacts on other planets. This proved more expensive than shopping local, but Starhive was able to get started and began building shirren battleships.

Sixty years later, company leaders began negotiating with the trox of Nchak, a Liavaran moon. Even as devout Hylaxians, the trox took the threat of the Swarm seriously and agreed on the need for warships capable of fighting it. Starhive added a second location on Nchak to coordinate with trox engineers on new starship technology. The company eventually expanded beyond warships to freighters and passenger vehicles, starting with the Drone Mk 1, which quickly became Starhive’s best-selling ship. Starhive ships are insectile in appearance, much like Hivonyx’s, but Starhive designs are immediately recognizable for their aggressive shapes, including heavy shells, stinger-like tails, and frills of spikes. The company is also known for impressive paint jobs, using proprietary iridescent paint that mimics an insect’s shell. Starhive ensures that no two ships have an identical appearance, even in its best-selling lines.

Starhive has come under scrutiny lately; several Hivonyx ships have been discovered outfitted with heavy weaponry, and evidence suggests Starhive is responsible for these conversions. Hivonyx is furious at this apparent subversion of its peaceful mission, but Starhive insists it is being framed and is working to prove its innocence before Hivonyx seeks legal recourse. This complicated scheme has all the markings of corporate sabotage, probably masterminded by one of Starhive’s Akitonian rivals, such as Sanjaval Spaceflight Systems.

Manufacturer Perk: Starhive designers know the importance of sufficient power on a warship. Starhive starships can install a power core housing for a second power core for only 8 BP instead of 10.

Terminator

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 75
Winners At Any Cost
Manufacturing Centers: Verces (Skyhook)
Specialties: Racers, high-performance personal transports
Famous Models: Slingshot, Sprint, Star Drake

Terminator is a newcomer to the Verces shipbuilding scene. The company was founded only about 40 years ago by Jacen Wither, an augmented Vercite sent away by her parents to be educated at an elite Castrovel academy; after graduation, she vanished for a decade, and it is widely believed she traveled the galaxy under a pseudonym, perhaps even spending time as a pirate among the Free Captains. Regardless, once she emerged, she had enough wealth to found her own company—purportedly bearing her crime syndicate nickname—and wielded total control over it until recently, when she began to groom her children and grandchildren to inherit the business. Terminator arose with the explicit purpose of blazing a new trail for Vercite ship construction, away from the aethership aesthetic that has dominated the field since Vercites first took to space. Wither has succeeded in this goal, building a vibrant, successful, and highly competitive firm that makes some of the most popular starships in the Pact Worlds.

In particular, Terminator has become a household name after the success of its Star Drake, which has won every Absalom Run for the last decade and shattered the dominance of Redshift Revolution, whose starships had consistently won the race for generations. Redshift manages to compete with Terminator, but Redshift’s old-fashioned style hasn’t been able to keep up with Wither’s cutthroat tactics and business savvy.

Terminator does more than just sell racers to elite teams and thrill-seeking dilettantes, though. It provides fighters, warships, and fast cargo haulers to clients throughout the Pact Worlds and Near Space. When conflict breaks out in Near Space—such as the recent hostilities between the Gideron Authority and the Marixah Republic—Terminator sells to both sides. Its single most important contract, however, is with the Stewards, and both parties take pains to keep that arrangement secret.

Jacen Wither is nearing retirement, and rumors suggest her cybernetic parts have finally started to break down. Tension among her offspring ensures that any transfer of leadership will be ugly and brutal. None of her children are likely to improve the ethical stance of the company, which is focused on making money and crushing the competition, though some family members are more subtle about their vicious predilections than others. Some of Terminator’s clients have quietly begun looking elsewhere, anticipating the company’s meltdown upon Jacen’s death. If the Stewards should decide not to renew their contract, that might be the spark that sets Terminator’s family squabbles aflame.

Manufacturer Perk: Terminator Drift engines are very efficient. Reduce the Minimum PCU for each to the following values: Signal Basic to 50, Signal Booster to 70, Signal Major to 100, Signal Superior to 150, and Signal Ultra to 175.

Tetrad

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 67
This massive consortium on Cyrune provides mysterious trading vessels to witchwyrds. These ships seem to waver on the edge of reality, and witchwyrd mastery of planar technology allows these vessels to slip between the planes as easily as they enter the Drift. Tetrad viciously defends this technology, lest it be stolen.

Any non-witchwyrd crew or mercenaries who serve aboard a Tetrad vessel are bound by strict contracts that govern their speech and behavior. Those who violate these contracts can be fined or jailed but more often find themselves targeted by bounty hunters or assassins. Some ex-employees find themselves in trouble with witchwyrds after fulfilling their contracts, discovering too late that they broke some hidden clause buried deep within their employment agreement.

Thaumtech Unlimited

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 76
Precognizant Engineers
Manufacturing Centers: Eox (Thousand Moons)
Specialties: “Smart” ships and reconnaissance vessels
Famous Models: Cairncarver, Omenbringer, Shadowcaster

Thaumtech Unlimited is an oddity among starship manufacturers. Though it goes long stretches between releases, each design is a runaway success. Its quality-of-life features— like immersive infosphere integration, smart-acoustics hull lattices, and phrenic AI assistance—are released to rave reviews, and the company can coast for years on a single starship release. Thaumtech even has a cult following among tech enthusiasts, who eagerly hype the slightest announcement. The company encourages this excitement, hosting outlandish reveal events and granting sponsorships to vidstream celebrities who record their live reactions. Their largest announcements have even involved the rambunctious personality Zo!, whose undead antics already draw media attention.

Few starship manufacturers are as secretive as Thaumtech Unlimited. Formed during the Gap, the company lost nearly all of its records after the Gap ended, including the company’s data about its own operations. Not deterred by the loss, Thaumtech utilized every magical and technological resource at its disposal to launch an aggressive (and invasive) market research campaign to recoup its losses. It was able to profit enormously in a short amount of time by capitalizing on consumer trends and honing its marketing with a laser focus. The company’s most notable success was the Shadowcaster, the first Drift-capable Eoxian starship.

The Shadowcaster would forever be remembered in Eoxian history, and netted Thaumtech enormous profits. However, it also drew the attention of jealous rivals. In 42 ag, Thaumtech was hit with an enormous fine for market abuse under the new Absalom Pact regulations on divination magic. Soon after, its Eoxian rivals pushed the company off Eox entirely, and Thaumtech was forced to consolidate activity in self-contained mining-manufactories on the Thousand Moons. Yet despite these attempts to sink the company, Thaumtech remains a wildly popular manufacturer. Its profits have only expanded, and the physical isolation of its factories enables its operations to be more discreet.

Thaumtech is unique among Eoxian manufacturers in that it regularly designs for both living and undead clientele. Though widely popular, the corporation is often under scrutiny. The starship computers Thaumtech installs are riddled with proprietary code that is difficult to unravel, and attempts to edit this code risk destroying the ship’s computers entirely. Privacy experts caution against holding private conversations aboard a Thaumtech ship; with all of Thaumtech’s innovations, the computers could be the least of who or what is listening.

Manufacturer Perk: Thaumtech operating systems are among the most secure in the Pact Worlds. Anti-hacking systems cost 1 BP less to install.

Ulrikka Clanholdings

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 67
Ulrikka Clanholdings is a dwarven company in the Diaspora, dedicated to mining and manufacturing. Ulrikka ships have a rough-and-tumble flair and look like old wrecks. Such a facade, however, hides a powerhouse of drilling machinery and capacious cargo holds to fill with goods, ore, and salvage that dwarves transport across the wastes.

Most Ulrikka crews are dwarves; others must prove their extraordinary skill or integrity before being truly accepted as crew and family. Once someone has earned a place, though, Ulrikka is an indefatigable ally, and more than a few capable fugitives and criminals have found shelter from bounty hunters aboard Ulrikka vessels.

Unified Conservatory

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 67
Based out of the Arkship Equilibrium, the Unified Conservatory (UC) provides ships to the Xenowardens. The Xenowardens specialize in combining top-of-the-line technology with biological components, so the UC uses solarpowered engines and other sustainable technology alongside nurseries housing rare plants and other biological components that are eventually grafted onto starships. UC ships serve as massive ecosystems, preserving portions of the environments of the locations they visit. One of their most notable ships is the Librama (page 93), a self-sustaining organic science vessel used to explore and discover new biotechnology.

Any Xenowarden can serve aboard a UC vessel; in fact, anyone dedicated to the sanctity of life can take a position on these ships, and the crew accepts anyone willing to fight for the druids’ cause. Once they are aboard, some of these new crew find that something awakens in them, drawing them to the animal-like consciousness of the ship itself, which is eager to bond with them.

United Interfaith Engineering

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 76
Ecumenical Engineers
Manufacturing Centers: Akiton, Castrovel, Verces
Specialties: Starships built for adventure
Famous Models: Hiveguard, Petaltail, Skimmer

United Interfaith Engineering (UIE) is the newest of the major shirren starship manufacturers. While Starhive split from Hivonyx over a difference of opinion regarding pacifism, the culture of both companies remains heavily Hylaxian. However, as shirrens have integrated into Pact Worlds life, many of them have followed other religious paths. Those interested in technology and engineering often follow Triune; those who love exploration regularly worship Weydan; and others still find spiritual comfort and creative inspiration in Oras, Sarenrae, or myriad others. Many of the shirrens who work in starship manufacturing have explored other religious paths and wanted a workplace that was less steeped in Hylaxian traditions.

Twenty years ago, former employees of both Starhive and Hivonyx formed the first UIE facility on Castrovel. The company is still staffed predominantly by shirrens but employs more non-shirren employees than its competitors. Over a hundred faiths are represented among its employees, and the company fosters an inclusive atmosphere. UIE is still growing rapidly and has had difficulty hiring enough personnel. Executives have begun new programs to hire and train engineers and technicians in collaboration with technical schools across more than 30 planets, with diversity-forward policies promoting and celebrating the inclusion of ever more faiths and philosophies at the company. This rapid expansion has triggered persistent growing pains, particularly as the numerous religious tenets come into conflict on manufacturing floors and in board rooms alike. Strangely, the Hylaxian employees seem to start the most arguments. Seeing Hylaxian principles presented as a mere corporate facet rather than as a unifying philosophy tends to inspire uncharacteristic outbursts in shirrens of that faith, despite their peaceful goals.

The first starships UIE made were mid-sized, well-defended designs like the Hiveguard, designed for deep exploration in dangerous areas. The company struggled to find a niche in which to compete with Starhive and Hivonyx, but found a market in customers who wanted to explore the galaxy and needed more firepower than Hivonyx provided at a lower cost than Starhive could offer. From the tiny Petaltail, which fits a single individual, to the much larger Hiveguard, which suits mercenaries and small corporations, many customers make UIE vehicles their ship of choice. The company offers customizable exteriors to suit shirren clientele but uses insectile features that aren’t off-putting to humans, lashuntas, or ysoki, ensuring its designs suit non-shirrens as well.

Manufacturer Perk: UIE’s ships are built for exploration and adventure, often with minimal crews. UIE starships can be operated with a crew 10% smaller than what is listed for the frame (minimum complement 1).

Vanguard Craftworks

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 77
Exquisite Makers
Manufacturing Centers: New Thespera, Perdure
Specialties: Luxury long-range transport vessels
Famous Models: Comet, Exsanguinator, Sanctum

When it comes to opulence and extravagance, Vanguard Craftworks provides posh space travel that rivals even Opulos. However, the price of the company’s fully customizable and technologically loaded ships keeps many from buying them. The Azlanti Star Empire also requires permits for the purchase of the company’s largest, most iconic, or combat-capable vessels, occasionally distributing them to especially distinguished nobles and scions. This restriction has created a high demand in the black market for rare Craftworks models.

The cost of Vanguard vessels is largely due to the empire’s staunch protection of its unique technology, but also represents the high-quality materials used and the wide array of personalization options available. A purchase from Vanguard begins with a personal consultation with a company representative who is equally skilled at interpreting the client’s needs and selling expensive upgrades. Craftworks’ primary competition is the Imperial Foundry, against whom it has positioned itself as a higher-end alternative with the same technical capabilities.

Although Vanguard Craftworks began as a relatively unknown startup, the sudden backing of Arioch-Oyadae (a tech firm owned by an alliance of Azlanti nobles) exponentially amplified the company’s capabilities and vaulted it to a place among major starship manufacturers overnight. Its partnership with the Star Empire allows it to innovate using Azlanti technology and ensures a reliable market with many wealthy patrons. The sheer wealth put forward by Arioch-Oyadae to get the venture off the ground has made Vanguard Craftworks a very rich debtor. This sudden and apparently one-sided backing suggests Arioch-Oyadae may hope to receive more than mere money from its investment. Whispers among the starship manufacturing industry suggest Arioch-Oyadae pressured Craftworks to produce combat-oriented ships like the Vanguard Exsanguinator.

The original masterminds behind the artistry and mechanics of Vanguard Craftworks are a non-Azlanti mechanic and architect, information that current Vanguard executives hide to avoid judgment from their benefactors. While executives, sales staff, and other public facing positions keep up the facade of an extravagant and purely Azlanti brand, Craftworks actually benefits from highly-skilled workers of many species and backgrounds. Although these employees are belittled by their proud Azlanti bosses, they are not regarded as servants and work behind the veil of Vanguard Craftworks’ sleek branding. Vanguard executives would view the release of this information as a scandal.

Manufacturer Perk: Most Vanguard Craftworks vessels have customizable decor and exterior aesthetics. Luxurious crew quarters are considered standard on Vanguard ships and cost only 3 BP.

Vindicas

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 77
Battle-ready Behemoths
Manufacturing Centers: Vesk Prime, Vesk-3
Specialties: Spartan, imposing gunships
Famous Models: Enforcer, Punisher, Tyrant

While Blood Mountain Clans emerged from the Gap as the Veskarium’s eminent and oldest surviving starship manufacturer, Vindicas arose only a few years later through a merger between several minor shipyards with military ties. The timing couldn’t have been better—emissaries from Absalom Station’s system arrived shortly afterward in sophisticated starships, sharing the gift of Drift technology and inspiring Veskarium leaders to crave this new system’s subjugation. Yet the vesk-operated starships that had conquered and controlled the Veskarium were insufficient to overwhelm this unfamiliar enemy, and the high despots demanded new starships capable of bringing it into submission. Blood Mountain Clans struggled to adapt to these orders, but the agile Vindicas quickly delivered blueprints for dreadnoughts large enough to blot out a sun. By the Battle of Aledra in 36 ag, Vindicas had grown more than a hundred-fold, secured countless military contracts, and supplied the largest warships created to date.

Since then, Vindicas has specialized in building even larger and more imposing starships, designed to end most conflicts through intimidation before they even begin. These ships’ unmatched firepower is in contrast to their amenities, which are infamously spartan—a point that Vindicas representatives laud as a feature rather than a flaw, noting that sparse living quarters encourage discipline and vigilance in the crew. Even the company’s leadership structure extols traditional vesk toughness, forcibly retiring any physically unfit executive on the premise that “any leader unfit to lead an assault is unfit to lead the company.” Unsubstantiated rumors even suggest that managerial promotions involve ritual combat.

Thanks to the Veskarium’s nearly endless state of war, Vindicas continued to grow through the end of the third century ag. However, Emperor Dmarangor I’s abdication in 296 ag at the end of the Swarm War commenced a decades-long era of uncomfortable peace. As Vindicas’s hawkish lobbyists urge the high despots to declare a new war and its complacent executives wait out this lull, the company’s sales have steadily declined. Yet its leaders are aging, and many of the eligible replacements believe in diversifying the Vindicas brand—not only with a greater focus on research and development, but also with civilian transports, cargo vessels, advanced surveillance starships, and more. But other candidates are fiercely imperialist and dedicated to the Veskarium war machine. Given the right opportunity, such Vindicas operatives might trigger a new galactic war to restore not only their company’s factories to full production, but also their corporation’s honor on the field of battle.

Manufacturer Perk: Vindicas ships are infamous for fielding huge quantities of weapons. The second starship weapon mounted in each non-turret arc on a Vindicas starship requires 5 fewer PCU than normal.