Nebulan Star EmpireTerra Nova brings to mind ingenuity and dragons. Graedius incites thoughts of opportunity and greed. The Nebulan Star Empire inspires terror. Myths, legends, and official reports have well-documented both real and imagined brutality and carnage caused by the Nebulans. Scars on entire worlds are said to remain to this day as a result of Nebulan actions.

Tradition places the Empire’s founding not long after Terra Nova Unification. As a society capable of intergalactic travel, this is accepted. However, most historians disagree with labeling it as an “empire” so early. Nebulan society was based around the ancient world of Nebulus, from which its superstitious, warlike people spread out. Early expansion began in an easterly direction, picking apart vulnerable systems incapable of advanced space travel or simply unable to cope with the fanatical Nebulan army.

Early Nebulan tactics are said to have been similar to those of the nomadic Elan: fast, agile warships more adept at skirmishing than heavy assault. These early tactics proved especially useful against the more ponderous navies of nearby enemies. The commonly accepted birthdate of the Nebulan Empire is approximately 1358, some 1500 years before the Battle of Aquias. After fifty years of constant war with the decaying Orian Empire, the Nebulans managed to crush the main Orian fleet in pitched battle. Most of the Orian territory had fallen to Nebulan hands during the wars, but it was this final battle that led to their full collapse. Not long after the fortress world of Salzus came under siege and was taken by storm following some days of heavy fighting. The fall of Salzus is considered a more appropriate date for the founding of the Nebulan Star Empire.

The Nebulans have repeatedly engaged in periods of conquest even through to the present, and though their tactics have changed dramatically from their earlier days, their military traditions remain the same. The golden age of the Nebulan Empire is dated to about 2623, 200 years prior to Aquias, when it successfully invaded and conquered the whole of the Graedian Confederacy. Hundreds of the wealthiest systems in the galaxy came under Nebulan rule, effectively fueling its war machine and thriving economy for the next two hundred years. This sparked a golden age for the Nebulan Empire. At no point before or since did Terra Nova feel as threatened by Nebulan expansion or military force as when they conquered the Graedians.

And yet little truly changed. In fact, although a cold war ensued from then on, the flow of information and trade actually increased rapidly. A stall occurred when the First Graedian Revolt was suppressed, and an economic crisis severely damaged the entire civilized galaxy. But the reconstruction of the Confederacy over the following period up to its independence eventually resulted in a vastly improved system of starlanes and trade routes. The system was reorganized and streamlined for better efficiency, decreased bureaucracy and corruption, and ultimately explosive commercial growth.

The end of the Nebulans’ golden age came in 2823 when a series of revolts, spawned during the Graedian Confederacy’s second uprising, nearly led to another galactic economic collapse. To prevent its demise, the Nebulan Empire allowed Graedius to secede from the empire under certain conditions – ultimately beneficial to both parties, though the Nebulans would still suffer severe economic losses. Other revolts were either brutally suppressed or bargained with, the latter resulting in the eventual formation of the Colonial Legion.

From this point on the Nebulans stagnated. Their invincible military machine was drastically weakened by the loss of direct control over the Graedian worlds. Their empire has since stabilized financially, but political struggles have begun to plague growth anew.

GOVERNMENT                                IMPERIAL ARMY                        COLONIAL LEGION