The Karkouri are a vulture-like species known for their tendency to attack and subjugate weaker civilizations. They are also enthusiastic users and traders of sentient slaves.



The Karkouri are bipedal bird-like aliens with spindly small bodies. The Karkouri are not especially strong but are cunning and cruel   The Karkouri have conquered several other races and made them subject races. These include the recently freed Ekuneri who are now more like a client state than like slaves  

Karkouri Physiology

Karkouri are a race that are not especially imposing, physically. They stand somewhere between five foot five and five foot nine and they are often thin and spindly. Despite this, Karkouri have an incredible will and endurance. They have superb eyesight and a keen sense of smell. Karkouri are a long lived race due to their excellent medical technology. A Karkouri lives on average 155 years but can live up to 225 years.  


Acquisition is the central premise of all Karkouri culture. The Karkouri are, first and foremost, a race of merchants and they enjoy gaining new things by whatever means.   This means that most of Karkouri culture is built around gaining things for as low a price as possible. This has lead to the backbone of the Karkouri Empire being the slave-trade. Countless millions (perhaps billions) of beings are slaves to the Karkouri Empire.   To the Karkouri, a slave is no more a living being than a starship, a firearm or an item of clothing. One of their common slave-races, a small lizard like race, has no name in Karkouri society.   The Karkouri have a reputation for ruthlessness and cruelty but this is somewhat harsh. They are a race that doesn't value pity or mercy and their emotional wave-length is different to the human one. They are capable of acts of great nobility and bravery. But they have endured and prospered due to thier intellect and ability to outwit their larger enemies  


The Karkouri do not really value religion but they do worship a pantheon of avaricious and capricious Gods. Worship tends to be private and fairly non denominational. Karkouri believe that there is an afterlife in which your wealth will be valued by the Gods (who constantly encourage their Karkouri offspring to gain as much wealth as possible)  

Karkouri Government

The Karkouri Regime

After the Karkouri Civil War, the new system of Government became a military dictatorship where the "Generals" were in express control of all of Karkouri Society. They formed a ruling council, comprised of a dozen senior generals.   The Regime proved to be much more efficient and focused than the previous Empire and removed much of the old corruption.   The Regime kept the Ekuneri in charge of the old civil service and as a race they were able to adapt quickly to the new environment. The Regime also did away with some of the restrictions that held back the Salborians and gradually the Salborians gained a new influence in the Regime  

The Colonel's Coup

In 2539, a group of ambitious young Karkouri officers executed a successful coup, wiping out the old Regime Council and seizing power.  There was a short purge and some clashes but the new Colonel's Regime Council were quickly able to consolidate power  

The Old Empire

The Karkouri Empire is a hereditary Empire, ruled in name by the Emperor. The Emperor is a member of the ruling family. He is advised by a council of Elder's, normally members of the Karkouri aristocracy. Karkouri Royalty and Nobles are known for their intellect, deviousness and cruelty. The ruling council holds the real power, one Noble tends to end up the actual leader of the Karkouri Empire. He is more often than not appointed Chancellor and holds the real power behind the throne. Occasionally Emperor's have emerged that are capable leaders in their own right but most are not.   The Karkouri do not have elections or political parties. The various ruling councils are filled by members of the nobility, most of whom are relatives of the Royal family. The Karkouri tend to bribe, cajole, blackmail and murder each other for advancement. Outright fighting between the Karkouri is very rare. The Karkouri, being physically small and weak tend to fight through their allies and warriors, their slaves and their assassins.   The ruling council tends to hand out concessions and offices as a way of keeping powerful and influential nobles on-side. Therefore their is a lot of graft in Karkouri Government, making it slow and prone to corruption. Bribery is legal in Karkouri society (which is not a society of laws)   The 2091 Civil War saw the old system of Government replaced by a harsh new one. The Military Council, known as the Regime, took power and removed all the civilians from the Government. They current rule as a Council of Generals. They have retained the support of the largely Ekuneri Civil Service but nearly ever senior post of their Government is held by a serving military officer.   This Government was seen by many in the outside world as highly unstable and there was much intrigue and assassination within it  

The Karkouri Empire

The Karkouri Empire is one of the most aggressive expansionist Empires. They currently have control of 30 colonies in 26 star systems and dominion over another 10 star systems. Their worlds are largely concentrated into four clusters of stars, making their Empire easy to retain control over. The Karkouri have a system of semi-independent Governors of these systems who are always members of the Karkouri aristocracy  

Karkouri Nobility

The Karkouri Nobility has many ranks and titles which are analogous to those of medieval Earth. The Karkouri Civil War of 2091 saw the ranks of the Karkouri nobility decimated as nearly everyone over the rank of Contren was murdered by the new "Regime"   The lowest rank of nobility is Preshar which is equivalent to a knight. They can own land or not but most that do not own land are either military officers or retainers to important nobles   Next is Contren. A Contren always owns an estate of some-kind and are often either lesser members of important houses or senior heirs to merchant houses. Contren are often given military commands.   The next rank is Odermen. An Odermen is normally the head of a house and is often the highest rank a merchant noble can hope to ascend to. Odermen are by default both military commanders and members of the government. Odermen will have their own estate and will often be allowed to govern new conquests.   Above Odermen is Kaisar. This is the head of a great house normally and probably the equivalent to either Duke or Prince in Earth terms. A Kaisar is always a member of the government and a senior military leader. Anyone born to the Imperial family is always a Kaisar by default.   The final rank is Emet-Kaisar which is the Emperor. He has the supreme command of the entire Karkouri Empire.  

Karkouri Client Races

The Hastiz are a large humanoid race with a slow metabolism. They are given most of the Karkouri manual labour (as the Karkouri disdain manual work). The Karkouri conquered the Hastiz 170 years ago   The Ekuneri are small, fox-like aliens with elegantly decorated coats and tails. They make up the majority of the Karkouri civil service and are the most well regarded and respected client race. They were conquered nearly 210 years ago   The Salborians are a compact and muscular near-humanoid race who are the mainstay of the Karkouri armed forces. They do almost all the ground work in wars. They were first conquered 150 years ago   The Karkouri also have several races that they consider to be slaves. These include the small repitoloids who were freed on St Lawrence. The Karkouri have no name for this species. They conquered them and annexed their world 205 years ago without need of a war (The repitoloids were still at the equivalent of the late medeval age)  

Karkouri Military

The Karkouri have a large and well armed military. The Naval contingent is staffed almost entirely by Karkouri officers. Karkouri warships are spread across the Empire, keeping the Imperial presence known and visible. They are well armed, fast and tended to be equipped with lethal missile silos and powerful EM sensors. The Karkouri ground forces are weaker than the Navy. They are largely crewed by slave/client races. The Salborians make up the bulk of the foot-soldiers. Ekuneri often serve as spotters and administrators. The Karkouri take the overall command roles  

Karkouri Military Ranks

Bursar is a very senior military rank which is generally given only to Karkouri (and very occasionally to exceptional Ekuneri and Salborians) A Bursar has certain Noble privileges that come with the rank including a cash bonus and some slaves.   Lo-Bursar is a very senior military rank and often the highest rank most career soldiers who are not nobles can attain. This rank can be bought by Karkouri but the cost would exclude all but the wealthiest of the merchant class. Attaining the rank (rather than buying it) always comes with a cash bonus.   Deunfes is a senior military rank and sometimes given out within the civil service. It has some judicial powers too that make it somewhat like the old human role of magistrate.   Coden is the junior rung for an officer. Most newly graduated Karkouri officers with means purchase up to this rank to avoid the years of thankless toil that come with the more junior rank.   Casavir is the most junior officer in the military. This is normally the glass ceiling for Salborian officers, giving them a platoon (or at most Company) sized command. Most Karkouri tend to skip this rank if they can   Hau-Shon is a special honor rank given to Salborians who have fought in one hundred actions. Hau-Shon cannot be promoted but are granted a personal command and are given a huge amount of respect.   Sho-Tek is the equivalent of a platoon or company sergeant and generally represents the rank that most Salborians who survive a campaign or two will ascend to.   Tassel is the junior NCO rank for Salborian foot soldiers   Jennel (which means spear or bladed weapon) is the basic rank for salborians  

Karkouri Foreign Relations

The Karkouri have been known to be aggressive expansionists. They are fierce and powerful, willing to take whatever steps to raise their strength. The Karkouri conquered the Ekuneri, Salborian and Hasitzz before they were able to space travel. They have also conquered the Rorn (though they were forced from Rorn space by the Vatu and Tranoan's)  


The Terran's and the Karkouri have had a very difficult history, with many wars fought between them. The Karkouri were defeated in the Four Empires War and areas of Karouri space were occupied, leading to the collapse of the Karkouri Empire and the establishment of the Karkouri Regime   Wars
  • the Four Empires War - Terran Victory -2089-2091
  • The Second Karkouri War - Inconclusive - 2162-2165
  • The Third Karkouri War - Karkouri Victory -2199 2200
  • The Fourth Karkouri War -Terran Victory - 2275-2278
  • The Fifth Karkouri War - Karkouri Victory - 2318-2321
  • The Sixth Karkouri War - Inconclusive -2366 -2367
  • Operation Whirlwind - Terran Victory - 2392
  • Operation Belepheron - Terran Victory -2395
  • Operation Red Tiger - Terran Victory - 2411
  • The Seventh Karkouri War -Karkouri Victory -2498
  • The Eight Karkouri War -Terran Victory -2534

The Tazzyn

General Statement he Karkouri share a five system wide border with the Tazzyn. The two Empires have skirmished during the early years of Tazzyn expansion. The Tazzyn dislike the Karkouri for their lack of honour and the Karkouri regard the Tazzyn as fellow expansionists and the two are intensely competitive.   The Karkouri and the Tazzyn were defacto allies for quite a long time but fell out during the early 25th century.   26th Century The long working relationship between the Karkouri and the Tazzyn was broken by the Karkouri alliance with the Dhau Empire. The Tazzyn and the Karkouri finally came to blows during the 26th century during the 3rd Dhau-Tranoan War which saw the Tazzyn and Vatu defeat the Karkouri and the Karkouri lose a world to the Vatu  

The Vatu

General Commentary The Karkouri and the Vatu went to war in the early years of the Vatu being a space-faring power. The two fought two wars, both of which were bloody and inconclusive. This lead to a long period of co-operation between the two before the Karkouri invaded Rorn space. The Vatu finally tired of their allies and went to war with the Karkouri, freeing the Rorn from the Vatu. The Karkouri mock the Vatu as unsophisticated.   26th Century The Vatu sided with the Tranoans and the Tazzyn against the Karkouri and scored major military victories over the Karkouri, including annexing a new world from the Karkouri  

The Rorn

General Commentary For obvious reasons these two powers do not see eye to eye. The Rorn were only just up-lifted when the Karkouri invaded and annexed them. The Rorn made fine slave labour for the Karkouri. It took intervention from the Vatu and the Tranoan's to free the Rorn from their conquerors. To this day the two are frosty with each other   The Karkouri successfully conquered 50% of Rorn space in the 25th century, shattering Rorn power and forcefully moving hundreds of thousands of Rorn into Karkouri space as slaves.   26th Century The Rorn fought a successful war of liberation, with support from the Mor-Du and the Bl'Hud. The frosty relationship between the two powers has ended up positively icy  

The Mor-Du

General Commentary The peaceful and shy Mor-Du are intensely distrustful of the Karkouri, regarding them as a threat. The superficial resemblance between the Karkouri and the Mor-Du's natural predators on their home-world adds to this tense and cold relationship   The Karkouri successfully conquered the Mor-Du Republic in the 23rd century, which was then liberated by a Terran led coalition.   26th Century The Mor-Du were key allies to the Rorn during their uprising against the Karkouri, working with the Bl'Hud.  

The Gannid

General Statement The Gannid are distrustful of the Karkouri, who made an initial attempt to conquer the Gannid. However Gannid fleets were able to resist the Karkouri invasion and the Gannid made their place in the Galactic community.   The Karkouri and Gannid ended up with a mutual alliance due to their shared antipathy towards the Terrans. The Karkouri ceded several occupied Terran worlds to the Gannid to get them into their mutual alliance with the Dhau   26th Century The Gannid Civil War ended the alliance with the Karkouri and the new administration did not appear interested in pursuing a friendship with the Karkouri  

The Indirians

The two trade all sorts of resources. Slaves are a common trade, the Indirian's capturing slaves from various races and selling them to the Karkouri. The Karkouri also hire Indirian ships as raiders, scouts and mercenaries.  

The Tranoans

The Tranoan's have a cold relationship with the Karkouri. They regard the Karkouri as cold and treacherous. The Karkouri regard the Tranoan's as uppity and condescending. The Karkouri have often had their plans thwarted by the Tranoans. The Tranoans have fought the Karkouri on three occasions and each time Tranoan technology has proven superior to the Karkouri   The Tranoans relationship with the Karkouri worsened after the Karkouri allied with the Dhau  

The Taurlei

The Taurlei uplifted the Karkouri, giving them technology and space-travel. This allowed the Karkouri to survive the brutal conditions on their homeworld. The Karkouri regarded the Taurlei as Gods and were worshipful at first. Eventually the Karkouri tired of doing what they were told by the Taurlei and began their history of conquest. This lead the Taurlei to eventually give up on the Karkouri and, in time, withdraw from Galactic Politics

Karkouri History

THIS SECTION REQUIRES CLARIFACTION / UPDATE The Karkouri were first uplifted around 900 AD. They were a primitive race at the time, barely out of their industrial revolution. The Karkouri had many natural predators on their desert home-world. Once they were uplifted they quickly achieved total dominion over their homeworld and then eventually their home-system. Around 150 years later they had attained total dominion over their home system and began to exploit the rest of the star system   However the Karkouri Government took another 600 years to really begin forward motion out the home systems. Arguments, bureaucracy and corruption had prevented the Karkouri from moving forward. Only the foundation of an Imperial Dynasty had knitted the Karkouri together from warring tribes. They moved out into the Quadrant and began to expand. 200 years later the Karkouri began a large program of conquest and expansion. They subjugated the Ekuneri, Hastiz and Salborians within 300 years and occupied and annexed their homeworlds.   These three races allowed the Karkouri to continue to expand their Empire rapidly. The Karkouri fought wars of expansion against nearly all of their neighbours in the Quadrant. They fought the Tranoans (once), the Vatu (twice) the Tazzyn (once) the Shaki (twice) the Bl'Hud (once) the Rorn (once) and the Gannid (once). They were able to annexe the Rorn home system and defeat their newly built fleet. This lead to a large war with both the Vatu and the Tranoans. An allied fleet invaded the Rorn systems and after three months had defeated the occupation fleet.   The Karkouri Empire sent in another fleet and fought a series of battles with the allied fleet and they were defeated again. This lead to raiding on the Tranoan's border. This almost lead to an invasion of the Karkouri home-systems by the Vatu. This threat ended the war with a Karkouri defeat   The Karkouri started out as trading allies to the Federation. However this relationship has soured and lead to the 2088 Treaty between the two that saw a ten year non-aggression pact signed in return for the ceding of the Whitworth and Furnace colonies. In 2089 the Karkouri broke this treaty and invaded the Federation, sparking the Four Empires War The war for the Karkouri against the Federation ended in 2090 after defeats in the Ross 159 and Alpha Centauri system (as well as a severe defeat by Vatu forces in their own space). The Karkouri Chancellor signed a peace accord on the Tazzyn homeworld, ending the war between the Federation and the Karkouri. This lead to severe political fallout back in the Karkori Empire   The Karkouri "Civil War" began that year with a highly successful and bloody coup by the Military. They executed the Emperor, the Chancellor and the entire Royal Household. Later on their assault wiped out every single major House on the Homeworld. They ended up in a brutal stand off with the merchant Houses whose bases of operations were not on the homeworld.   By 2094 the Karkouri Civil War was won. The Military Faction overwhelmed the Merchant Faction and wiped them out. The new Military Regime took over the total Governance of the Empire. They were forced into a humiliating climb down as the Tazzyn, the Federation, the Rorn and the Gannid. The "JOZ" proved to be a bloody quagmire for these Empires whilst the Karkour re-armed   By 2098 the Karkouri Empire had totally rebuilt its wartime fleet and began to exert pressure on the occupying Empires. In 2099 they reoccupied a former Terran world in the JOZ after Operation Arc-Angel invaded their sovreign space. The Karkouri Empire also went towar with the Vatu, beginning a two year war which the Karkouri won, defeating their enemies from the Four Empires War and retaking their lost colonies   The 2110 Karkouri/Gannid Alliance saw the two form a powerful trade and industrial axis that saw them dominate a twenty five year "Trade War" with the Federation. The alliance ended in the 2140's. In 2147 The Karkouri attempted to take four border systems from the Vatu, triggering another war with the Vatu. This one was much more successful for the Karkouri but they were prevented from invading Vatu home systems by pressure by the Tranoans   In the year 2162 they entered into another war with the Federation. This four year war, known as the Second Karkouri War (by Terran reckoning) was a back and forth affair but was largely inconclusive. The Karkouri felt that they were the strategic victors as they put Fort Blue Water out of commission, removing the lingering Terran presence in their space   During the 70's to the 90's the Karkouri Regime was stable and pushed back against the Federation and the Gannid in a trade war. Sometimes they formed a unified front with the Gannid and then during the Gannid/Federation alliance, they concentrating on the Federation.   In the year 2199 the Karkouri took advantage of the Dhaugosk War by invading Mor-Du space. The Federation declared war on them, starting the Third Karkouri War. The Karkouri won the 3rd Karkouri war, finally defeating the Federation in an open war. They annexed the Mor-Du Republic, taking control of four new highly profitable worlds and more than three billion new citizens   In 2266 the Karkouri went to war with the Gannid Commonwealth though it is largely inconclusive and brought to an end after the Galactic Council orders a cease-fire.   The Terran's eventually got even with the Karkouri in the year 2273 by liberating the Mor-Du. The newly freed Mor-Du became a protectorate under the new Terran Confederate Union. The Karkouri harbored a vicious grudge against their old enemies.   In 2300 they began an aggressive trade-war against the Terrans which turned into a shooting war in 2318. The Karkouri won a shockingly one-sided victory over the Terrans during the 5th Karkouri war (by Terran reckoning) and occupied much of Terran space.   They formed the Provisional Government; a buffer state to protect their interests in the newly conquered territory. The Provisional Government struggled to get buy-in from the colonies who often operated on their own, with Mars, St Lawrence and Whitworth having a lot of influence.   The last of the Confederate Fleet was destroyed in 2320. However, a radical left-wing militia referred to as OMDA began a masterful resistance campaign and the occupied territories dissolved into fighting. The Karkouri were also infected with what proved to be a biological weapon and many of their officers were forced to withdraw or die of the virus.   In 2321 OMDA and its allies launched a surprise attack, destroying much of the Karkouri Striking fleet. the Karkouri occupation was ended, though many Salborian ground forces left behind were ordered to conduct scorched operations.   The Karkouri began a series of tariffs and began another trade war against the Terran successor governments, starting in 2329. Intervention from the Tazzyn in 2334 ended this but the Karkouri remained an antagonist to the newly formed Federated States. There were attempts to create a back-channel trade deal between the two powers but their relations remained tense for years.   In 2366, two Karkouri task forces strike across the frontier and score victories over the Federated States. A landing is made on St Lawrence The Karkouri shock the galactic community by releasing the JS1E1 virus which kills nearly 80 million people.   In 2377 the Karkouri defeated the Vatu, occupying several Vatu worlds. The Galactic Council condemned the actions of the Karkouri but appeared unwilling to take any actions. The Federated States appeared to back intervention but the coup of 2380 put paid to that.   In 2386 the Karkouri withdraw from two of the Vatu worlds, as per an agreement made with the Galactic Council. Inspectors reveal the worlds have been strip-mined and that Vatu casualties are in the millions.   In 2392 the new Terran Empire launches a shock attack against the Karkouri occupying forces in Vatu space, routing their fleet. The Karkouri are offered to withdraw their ground troops and agree to do so.   In 2402 the Karkouri Regime agreed to back the Dhau Imperial Government during their civil war. They shipped arms and equipment to the Dhau, as well as agreeing to loan them money.   In 2411, the Karkouri Regime slipped into a civil war as a rebel "Pro-democratic" faction attempted to seize control of the Regime Council. They are backed by surviving exiled Karkouri nobles and some the merchant classes.   The Terran Empire launches Operation Red Tiger and smashes the Karkouri fleet, wiping out around 75% of their fleet. The Karkouri Regime are hobbled and are forced to fight a holding action against the rebels within their regime.   in a rare turn, the Galactic Council condemns the actions of the Terran Empire, putting an embargo on them enforced by the Tazzyn Empire.   After eight years of bitter fighting, the Karkouri Civil War ends with the Regime Council and its generals remaining in power. The democratic rebels are forced to conduct a last gasp resistance from Karkouri frontier worlds.   In 2434 the Terran Empire attempts to rescue the Karkouri resistance in Operation Cordite but they suffer a spectacular intelligence defeat, losing a dozen ONI controlled ships and over a thousand men and women. The Karkouri gradually grind down the Democratic-Resistance.   In response to the creation of the CANDL arrangement by the Terran Empire, the Karkouri Regime signs a military alliance, referred to by Terran's as the DKA with the Dhau Empire. The two become closer and begin cross training. The Karkouri and Dhau also share industrial capacity and the Karkouri help the Dhau to increase their fleet-dock capacity.   In 2468 and 2469 there was escalating tension between the Terran Empire and the Karkouri Regime with each side accusing the other of commerce raiding.  

Karkouri Technology

The Karkouri have advanced technology. They specialize in plasma powered technology (especially in weapons tech). The Karkouri build powerful and effective weapons which they have been known to sell to just about any race that can afford their prices. They arm their ships with plasma warheads, energy weapons and powerful EM screening. Their ground troops are equipped with projectile weapons. The Karkouri elite are often armed with energy weapons, powerful lances that are able to scour the battlefield   Karkouri also build superior scanning and surveillance equipment, some of the best in the Quadrant

Articles under Karkouri


Please Login in order to comment!