|Allies||Utan Mir, Rek, Vyar, Sapphire Cults of the Jeweled Heresy, Sooq, League of Anar, K'sath, Quix, Shrikem, Y'saari, Lha Ti|
Morphology and Physiology
Nothing is currently known concerning the characteristics of the Ta-Deth.
The Ta-Deth were an Elder Race created long ago by the Empyreal, Omega. However, unlike some of the other races, they were not imbued with the power of Wild Kith and thus were dependent on technology for the advancement of their society. About 14 million years ago when Omega was ended and Wild Kith was dissipated, the Ta-Deth along with the other technology dependent Elder Races gained the advantage over the previously dominant Wild Kith Empires and rose to power as the kith dependent races quickly died out over the next two decades.
Approximately 42,000 years ago, the Ishvana contacted the various races of the Starmourn Sector and demanded they submit and be assimilated into its collective consciousness. The Ta-Deth refused and banded together with the other Elder Races to attempt to stem its genocidal onslaught in what would become known as the War of Extinction. They supported the Sapphire Cults of the Jeweled Heresy in their suicide run against the Ishvana's vast armada and were in turn completely wiped out.
Culture and Technology
Atheistic and instead great worshippers of the beauty and power of science, the graceful, refined Ta-Deth valued permanence in their inventions. Items of technology in their culture were considered heirlooms, beautiful and ornate objects made with extremely high quality materials. A simple hand terminal or communication device could be passed down from parent to child, and would be maintained the same way an artisan would maintain a prized piece of wooden furniture. Though following this path logically meant a necessary sacrifice in the speed of upgrades and research advancements, the 'technological arms race' mentality so common to the modern world was not something that in which Ta-Dethian society indulged.
It was not unusual for stone, gems, or precious metals to be used in a piece of Ta-Deth tech, and even these materials were preserved against the passage of time by a process called cryosealing. A technique of their own invention, cryosealing altered the cellular structure of a material at the atomic level, essentially preserving inert materials like stone, wood, and metal from oxidation, wear and tear, and other molecular degradation. It did not work on living flesh.
This was the foundation on which the Ta-Deth built their society, and the foundation on which the Cosmpiercers were constructed. Old beyond reckoning, these ancient scanning stations have survived the test of millenia, but thanks to the culture, ethics, and craftsmanship of the Ta-Deth's approach, they remain in good working order - as do many other items of Ta-Deth make.
Unfortunately, the skills used in Ta-Deth craftsmanship are lost to time, unable to be replicated by modern means. Such is the quality of their legacy, however, that there are plentiful amounts of Ta-Deth artifacts still in use today, far more than any other extinct Elder Race. Though the Cosmpiercers are the largest, most visible and famous of these, smaller military bases, settlements, research stations and even ships have been found throughout the galaxy, and there is a brisk trade in Ta-Deth tech among collectors.
One such artifact is a ship named Ahnsang's Halo, which is regarded as the pinnacle of ancient Ta-deth civilian technology. Believed to be named for a dying and incredibly powerful star in their home system, from which much of their technology was purportedly powered, the ship harnesses the physical energy of the stars to ensure longevity in its grace and mechanics. The beauty of Ta-deth design is showcased exquisitely in the vessel, which continues to fly in the sector today.
As for the Cosmpiercers themselves, they have proved impossible to convert to modern energy sources, and remain in operation only by the use of Ta-Deth power crystals, ancient batteries which can only be charged by Cosmpiercer generators, along with other proprietary power stations found throughout the galaxy. The use of these power crystals is essential in the maintenance of Cosmpiercer operations, which makes acquisition of them an urgent necessity.