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Faction Creation

Yeah, the factions in Arclight are pretty cool, but you are really wanting to roll you own. Well, look no further, because from here you get to see all the behind the scenes action in the exciting world of faction creation.

To build a new faction, use the following steps:

  1. Fill out the faction creation worksheet
  2. Create your faction's cannon and/or torpedo families
  3. Create your faction's special tech
  4. Create your faction's Damage Index (PDF)
  5. Build ships (PDF)

Faction creation guidance

When the faction creation worksheet is filled out, relative and absolute maximums for various ship systems are generated. Your ships may never have a higher stat than the absolute limit, nor can the value be higher than the relative limit. When building ships, the final Thrust and Maneuver limits cannot be determined until the very end since they are both modified by the ship's size.

Each faction has up to three weapon families. These can be any combination of cannons and torpedoes and the faction sheet shows the best weapon that can be created for the family. Unfortunately, cannon's have Structure and Power requirements so typically less powerful versions of the same cannon are made to fit into smaller ships.

Torpedoes have a size and point cost. The size indicates what type of torpedo bay must be fitted on the ship in order to mount the torpedoes.

The special tech is an open category where you can create one technology that bends the rules or allows the ship to do something not found in the rules. Jump pods, afterburners, integrated links, and thrust damaging torpedoes are all examples of special tech. There are no hard and fast rules on what the special tech costs or how it operates. That is completely up to you.

The damage index PDF shows the template for creating a damage index. There are three levels of hits in the game, A, B, C. What is affected by each level is listed on the template as well as when critical hits and structure hits happen. Also listed on the template is the exchange rate for the different levels. For instance, if you need to place a B damage hit in a box on the damage index, you could place a B or two As.

If making a damage index seems boring, I did write a quick Visual Basic app to randomly create the DI based on your desired ratios. It should work on most Windows machines without a problem, but download it at your own risk. We aren't responsible for anything that happens if you use the program (standard software disclaimer).

Finally, after all that, you can build a ship. Each item in a ship has some combination of cost, mass, and power.

The very first thing to do in ship creation is to choose a Structure. This gives you the Structure Multiplier which is applied to various systems. The concept of the Structure Multiplier is that a hardier ship is more costly and massive to make than a less hardier one. Just apply the Structure Multiplier to each system's cost and mass when indicated.

With the Structure chosen, proceed to purchase the other ship components until you are satisfied. When you total up all of the mass, check the Size chart to find the Size of your ship. If the size is less than the faction's absolute Maneuver, then the absolute Maneuver is the ship's Maneuver, otherwise, the Size is the Maneuver. Depending on the faction's relative limit on Thrust, you will have to subtract some multiple of the ship's size to determine the final Thrust.

Some notes about ship construction:

I think that covers it. As always, any questions and feedback can be directed to our forums.


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