The Kushan are a species that feature in Homeworld.
The Kushan were a people descended from the Hiigarans that originated from the Inner Rim world of Hiigara. Long ago, they once ruled the Hiigaran empire that was divided into a number of extended families that commanded a great deal of territory. Among the conquering empires, the Hiigarans war fleets were noted to had easily shattered the defences of their neighbours and bringing them under the control of their ruling council that was the Diamid. Within the same region of space, they encountered the Taiidan that were rivals with the two having a number of disputes. Each respective empire had been built on assimilating those worlds around them. The border worlds were a source of bitter dispute between the two empires with conflict long raging over their ownership. The Hiigarans were one of the many races that erupted into conflict across the galaxy that challenged the fragile peace made by the Bentusi. This period saw the formation of the Galactic Council with the Hiigarans being one of the founding members. One of the matters that was brought to this body was the disputed border worlds between Hiigaran and Taiidani space. The Taiidan representative was believed to had made bribes and other overtures to convince the Council to side with them. Thus, the worlds were awarded to the Taiidan empire with a 30 year exclusion zone being instituted that prevented the Hiigaran fleet from approaching it or they would face reprisal from the Galactic Council. The Hiigarans being impotent before the Council would have remained the state of affairs had a discovery into the Great Wastelands had not uncovered a relic of great importance. Exploration of that uncharged region of space led to the discovery of the Hyperspace Core within a crystalline lattice. This offered the Hiigarans the power of Far Jumping that was a technology only available to the Bentusi and gave them the means of attaining their vengeance against the Taiidan along with the opportunity to reclaim their lost worlds. After reverse engineering the technology, they installed the Hyperspace Core in a flagship named Sajuuk's Wrath. The Hiigaran Navy was reorganised into a single main force in order to utilise the Far Jumping capabilities to its maximum potential. With it, the Hiigarans were able to bypass the Taiidan forces on the border and strike at their inner colonies. Patrols and garrisons faced the full Hiigaran fleet with any threat being destroyed. By the time the reports reached the Taiidan homeworld, the Hiigaran forces had arrived in orbit with the Taiidan Elite Guard being eliminated. The Hiigaran fleet then proceeded to conduct orbital bombardment of the Taiidani Imperial capital thus neutralising the threat posed by their rivals after which the naval task force returned to Hiigara in victory.
Upon returning, the Hiigarans made plans to reclaim the border worlds and await the action of the Galactic Council. They knew their actions would be challenged but had believed the Council's typically slow response would allow them more time. As such, they were surprised when the Council provided a speedy verdict where they demanded the Hiigarans relinquish the Hyperspace Core to their custody and to abandon all vessels within the exclusion zone that were to be returned back to their owners with a response being demanded within a 24 hour period. The Hiigarans seemingly agreed to the terms but on the condition that they relinquish the Core to the Bentusi. The Bentusi then arrived to take the Core and found the Hiigaran fleet that was seemingly inactive but then powered up where they assaulted the Bentus Harbour Ship itself. Their intention was to claim the Bentusi Hyperspace Core as well but despite their efforts the Hiigarans were unable to match the skill, experience or technology of the Bentus. The Bentusi made repeated attempts for the Hiigarans to surrender all of which were ignored with the Sajuuk's Wrath continuing its attack. Ultimately, it had to be disabled and with the Hiigaran fleet in ruins the Bentusi made their attempt at taking custody of the Hyperspace Core. In desperation, the Flagship commander set the Sajuuk's Wrath on a course for Hiigarans Angel Moon on a collision course in an attempt to deny the enemy from claiming the Core. In the aftermath, the Hiigarans had become a broken people with their military shattered and them being incapable of further action. The Galactic Council placed an edict that no further reparations were needed but that the Hiigarans had to agree to demilitarising their forces and never take up arms again. It was during this time that the Taiidan forces decided to strike and claim their revenge against the Hiigarans. Their border fleet was the sole remaining forces that remained and under the command of Admiral Riesstiu they struck at the Hiigaran worlds.
The Taiidani offensive against the Hiigaran Empire shattered what few defences present on those worlds which were offered a choice of either joining their empire or be destroyed. On those worlds that refused, the Taiidan deployed their Atmospheric Deprivation weapons that scoured life on an inhabitable world. The Taiidan at this point had no issue in using such horrific weapons as they were eager to avenge their losses after the death of their emperor. Millions died on the first world this was deployed with the carnage continuing with certain planets being razed anyway as Admiral Riesstiu was suspicious about those that surrendered too easily. The slaughter came to be known as Riesstiu Revenge with the number of deaths being unlike any in the entire history of conflict in the Outer Rim Trade Routes. The Galactic Council attempted to intervene to end the massacre where they threatened sanctons but this did little to stop the Taiidan. Riesstiu then made a formal demand to end hostilities that dictated that all the Hiigaran worlds would be subsumed into the Taiidan Empire with Hiigara itself being the new Taiidan Homeworld and site of its Imperial Palace. In addition, all Hiigarans were either to become slaves or executed with the latter being based on their involvement in the destruction of the Taiidan Homeworld. The Diaamid attempted to find a middle ground but Admiral Riesstiu was adamant and unmoving on these points with the Hiigarans have little options available to them. The Bentusi feeling guilty in their involvement in the Hiigarans fate attempted to offer a last solution that all parties could agree upon. This new term allowed for the Hiigarans to board as many sub-light transports as they could and go into exile onto a designated desert planet beyond the trade routes. Any Hiigarans that remained behind were enslaved or executed but those that went into the exile were allowed to rebuild on their new world but on the condition that they never develop Far Jump technology or leave their new homeworld. Ultimately, the Kiith-Sa accepted as it offered a slim chance for their peoples survival and these Hiigarans became the Exiles.
It was then that every able-bodied Hiigaran took part in the journey where some secretly hid the second Hyperspace Core among the transport caravan with the slim hope that they could use it to return to their homeworld. It was then that the transports departed Hiigara as they made their slow journey to their new home. Some of the Hiigarans came to hide within the Great Nebula that became known as the Garden of Kadesh where they became the Kadeshi who saw their new home as sacred and preyed on any intruders to ensure that the Taiidan never learnt of their existence. Another group of Exiles continued their journey were they came to find a desert world that came to be known as Kharak. These ships settled the barren world where in time they forgot their origins and developed a new culture and belief system as the survivors became the Kushan. Their origins in space were lost to memory and they had forgotten the age old edict that stated that they were never to develop space travel again as per the terms with the Taiidan empire. For the next 3,000 years, the Exiles continued to live on Kharak with their history being myth and legend that was forgotten by their people.
Deserts of Kharak
Upon settling their new home, the colonists established a settlement at the site of one of the ancient vessels that came to be called Khar-Toba, the First City. From the wreck site, the city spread radially around the site with the Kushan taking shelter from the desert by residing underground. When the power plant of the Khar-Toba failed, the refugees were believed to had fled in small groups of friends and relatives thus dispering the population across Kharak. Kushan early history on Kharak was filled with inter-clan conflicts that were fought over territory and religious beliefs. For a long time, the Kushan debated over their origins during the span of their 1300 recorded history with this only being fuelled by the harsh conditions of Kharak. Official Kharakian dating system began to designate 0KDS as the start of the history of the Kushan people. In 340, there was the first mentions of Kiith Manaan who came to be known as "The Travellers" with Kiith Soban as "The Grey Brotherhood" being formed in 416. In 462, the Kiith Siidim Council declared that they were of Divine Origin that they were of the gods whilst the other kiith were sand people native to Kharak and thus beneath them. The resultant pograms made by the Sidiim begin to affect a number of kiith on Kharak such as Kiith Paktu who were driven from their ancestral lands and homes in 488. By 490, the Great Migration begins with nearly 50 Paktu families setting sail for 'Albegiido where they created the Great Banded Desert on the winds of the Chak m'Hot in the hope of reaching the southern lands. The journey was dangerous and ultimately only 17 of the families came to survive the migration. Upon arriving, the members of Kiith Paktu began settling the south in 493 after which some of its members crossed the Great Banded Desert again in order to tell others of what they had established in their new home. Meanwhile, the Siidim continued their aggression where in 513 they slaughtered Manaani at Ferin Sha (Translation: The Dancing Grounds). Eventually, conflict erupted between two of the largest kiith's of the north with these being the Kiith Siidim and the other being the Kiith Gaalsien. This came about over the reasons the Gods had placed them on such an inhospitable world as Kharak leading to the Heresy Wars in 520. The large scale conflict between two of the largest clans in the north namely the Siidim and the Gaalsien erupted primarily over the issue of their place on Kharak. The Siidim believed that they were once a great race that lived in paradise until they were punished by the gods for their hubris who cast them down to Kharak. Meanwhile, the Gaalsien believed the Kushan people were made to suffer from the beginning and that Kharak was the only existence for their people and thus saw the Sidiim's beliefs to be heretical. Eventually, the Heresy Wars came to spread to the regions of the southern zone with the conflicting lasting a period of 300 years and created clan feuds that kept erupting into further battles.
In 652, Kiith Siidim launched three assaults against the Southern Lands in an effort to seek tribute from kiithids they considered vassal clans but these were a failure. Meanwhile, in 656, Jora Manaan declared an end to her kith's war against the Siidim with her clan devoting their focus to trade with a new dancing ground being built in the southern Paktu-held territories. In 698, Kiith-sa Kim Paktu defeated Liam Gaalsien in the Battle of the Majiiran Sea with this being the last ever crusade attempted by Kiith Paktu. In 717, Kiith Gaalsien began retreating into the desert wastelands as they abandoned their positions in the north whilst claiming the decadence of the other clans would bring about the wrath of the god Sajuuk. In the same year, Miirpat Gaalsien-Sa ordered his people to destroy the complex series of wind baffles, dykes and sand paths that protected the temple city of Saju-Ka. The act buries the city completely under sand killing thousands and causing the loss of an artistic gem on Kharak at the time. As a result, the Kiith Gaalsien were convicted in absentia in 718 and deemed an outlaw clan. The three century long conflict left the Kushan on the brink of extinction as precious infrastructure was destroyed with resources being lost as a result. In 810, the internal anarchy had left the different factions exhausted and it was then that a small obscure northern clan called the Naabal from the settlement of Tiir emerged that developed chemical explosives which made them unmatched in warfare. From their valley enclave, they came to expose the world to a new era leading to the use of advanced explosives, steam power and refinement techniques that they had kept hidden for more than a hundred years. This group preached a view of science and logic where they offered their protection to anyone who shared these view. None of the theological clans managed to defeat the Naabel who within the span of 20 years made Tiir a new capital as they sparked a new era known as the Age of Reason beginning in 830. This sparked a time of debate and development in sciences where advances in biological and chemical sciences revealed a lack of commonality between the Kushan biochemical makeup and those of the lifeforms native to their world. When the Daiamid Movement was formed, it sparked an era of scientific breakthroughs and philosophical discussion that led to the XenoGenesis Theory where their race came to conclude that they were not native to Kharak. This alone did not end conflict but sparked an interest in space exploration in an effort for the Kushan to discover their origins.
Afterwards, elements of the Kushan people began to push for space exploration. The idea of space exploration was not greeted favourably by the people as some believed efforts should have been made at staving off the encroaching desert and developing means of supporting the Kushan population. It was an obscure theologian named Per Doine who helped pave the way for unifying the factions opposed to space launch. He referenced the old myth that tragedy would befall the people of Kharak if they went into space and that they would be punished for their arrogance. This reignited fervour amongst the religious groups who had experienced a revival among the polar territories. In turn, this brought about the formation of a frenzied mob that were looking to tear down the first orbital flight of the Silumiin launch vehicle. The event was known as the Mission Silumiin Riots that occurred in circa 1024 as the mob looked to stop the lift-off with disaster only being averted by the High Technocrats who prevented firing of the defensive turrets and preached reason for the 14 hour period of the launch. In that time, Per Doine managed to slip through the protective cordons and prayed beneath the rocket engines where he was incinerated by the launch and labelled a martyr for his cause. The era of piloted orbital exploration came to show further signs that the Kushan people were not indigenous to Kharak with advanced debris found in space but this did not confirm their origins.
In 1057, a meeting of the full Daiamid of Tiir was called by Kiith S'jet to discuss troubling meteorological patterns that indicated that the Great Barrier mountain range which protected the northern polar region would be overwhelmed within a century. Thus, the Northern kiithid set about the task of creating an artificial substitute that was a giant full kilometre wide sand baffle wall that covered kilometres to provide the necessary protection for the northern polar regions. The northern kiithids united in Project: Stormbreaker that took nearly a decade to complete and it was during this time that kiith Gaalsien began to re-emerge after centuries of hiding in the equatorial wastes. Initially, this took the form of communiques into the polar comm relays with the same message being played namely that mortal kiithid had no right or mandate to oppose God's will. The Gaalsien were opposed to the Stormbreaker wall and warned the norther kiiths that this would fall and when their warnings were not heeded then their Kiith-Sa declared a holy war against the North. This saw a period where small raids were conducted on construction sites with this being a way for the Gaalsien to perfect their military tactics of inflicting the most damage against numerous but scattered foes. In time, the strikes became more ambitious causing serious disruptions in the construction schedule but the Gaalsien were not the only ones learning from these encounters. The norther kiiths had built the Stormbeaker wall with a series of firebases and fortified command centers to protect it against enemies with these breaking a number of Gaalsien raids. The costly attacks led to hundreds of their "Fist of God" warriors being killed and caused a stop to the attacks leading to a tense peace that allowed the wall to near completion. The Gaalsien-Sa saw the completion as a barrier to any chance of threatening Tiir itself and thus organised the Siifar Kor'shesh (the Night of Fiery Daggers). It was then that in 1074 that ten thousand Gaalsien Fists struck at the twin gate wall forts that guarded the main access valley. Their intention was to raze the location and then head to the rich lands beyond the point. Though incomplete, the Guardian forts were still manned by 500 warriors and another 600 technicians along with laborers. Despite felling hundreds of fanatics, slowly the tide turned and many of the defenders died alongside those they protected as they attempted to hold the line. Once Gaalsien reserves entered the fray, the Naabal-Sa gave the order to spring the trap and two full legions of Sobani mercenaries arose from the desert floor and ambushed the enemy forces. At the cost of many lives, the Naabal had arranged a cunning trap that would strip their foes of an entire generation of warriors with this being a success. Thus, the Stormbreaker Wall held and the Northern Coalition was victorious thus ensuring an era of peace for them in the future.
Meanwhile, back in 1061, the first manned space flight missions came to discover floating debris in high orbit around Kharak. This consisted of metallic compounds but ones that shared no similarity to anything on the Kushan homeworld. Thus, from then to 1110 a period of discovery began with the study of the space debris leading to a new wave of scientific progress as the Kushan learnt more of metallurgy and manufacturing. It was during this time that they also developed their knowledge of both fission and fusion power planets. In 1100, Kiith S'jet launched a new sensor system as part of Project Viin Cal that was a series of deep-scan radar satellites that swept the surface of Kharak. The program suffered from various disappointments due to malfunctions and strange localised magnetic inversions. This saw a downgrade of much of its operations in 1106 with fewer resources and staff. It was during this time that a young technician named Leykab Jaraci managed to accidentally uncover a large metallic object within the deserts of Kharak that was seemingly of alien construction. The event changed the fate of the Kushan people who decided to investigate the Jaraci Object. This was followed by a petitioning of the Daiamid for an expedition to investigate the site leading the forming of Operation Skaal Brii. Knowledge of the initial anomaly expedition was not well known with the Ifriit Naabal exploration carrier being reassigned to the task with a specialised crew. Though a scientific expedition, military divisions were assigned due to the Gaalsien remaining a valid threat but the danger was worth the risk as it was believed the anomaly could provide either technological advances or further insight into the origins of the Kushan people thus answering the Xenogenesis Question. All contact was lost with the carrier in less than a month after all contact with Tiir was lost and a year later the Coalition called off the search with the expedition being deemed lost by 1108. Thus, in 1110, the Second Jaraci Expedition was launched with Operation Khadiim that was tasked with exploring the Primary Anomaly. Increased Gaalsien incursions saw an added purpose to the Anomaly Expdition 2.0 as it was not only to find the crash site but also the source of their enemy's technological breakthroughs with the Kapisi being launched with this mission objective.
The discovery of the Guidestone changed the outlook of the Kushan people who decided to devote themselves to finding their true home.
In the triad of 1159, the final plans were accept in creating a vessel that could take the Kushan people to the path indicated on the Guidestone. Construction efforts began with simply building the infrastructure for the massive vessel taking 20 years as resources were harvested from the Kharak system. Another 10 years was needed to build the orbital scaffold that served as the framework for the construction of the Mothership with another 25 years taken to slowly build the massive vessel.
The Burning of Kharak was a traumatic period for the Kushan people. This began the period of the Kushan Exodus that continued for the next six months as they sought their homeworld.
Colonisation upon landing on Hiigara proved to be difficult as instead of a paradise the Kushan found shattered cities as a result of the rushed evacuation of the planet following the death of the Taiidan Emperor. The return to Hiigara was in the Kharakian dating system of 1216 which was Galactic Stand Year 9,510. Kiith S'jet decided to mark this momentous occasion by beginning a new calendar that marked their arrival on their homeworld in a time known as the Hiigaran Landfall that was Year Zero. From then on, the 550,000 surviving of the Exodus set about adapting to their new home and circumstances. Karen S'Jet was removed as the core consciousness of the Mothership allowing her to experience Hiigara herself thus leaving the vessel in orbit where it became a space station and shipyard. From the inactive Mothership, numerous vessels were produced to be part of the new Hiigaran navy that consisted of six great Fleets with the Kiithids each taking command of an autonomous carrier group who took turns in patrolling their space. The warrior kiithids set about protecting Hiigaran space from pirates whilst a 10-light year exclusion zone was established for the people of Hiigara to be their territory that bordered the Bentusi and Taiidan Republic. A New Daiamid was completed in 4 AHL (9514 GSY) that was based in the new planetary capital of Asaam Kiith'sid where the Daiamid Assembly was dominated by the larger kiithids that included the Paktu, the Manaan, the S'jet, the Naabal, the LiirHra, the Kaalel and the Soban. These consisted of the majority of the Kushan people with a population of almost 300,000 combined whereas the other kiiths only had smaller families ranging up to a hundred individuals. These kiiths were referred to as the Sleepers and consisted largely of families that were in cryogenic suspension during the Exodus and came from all walks of life with the only common factor among them being their sense of powerlessness in the New Diamid system.
Forty years after their return to their homeworld, the Hiigarans came upon documents that detailed the history of the Hyperspace Core within their possession and that it was one of three such relics. There were varying accounts as to their origins with some being shrouded in myth as being the creation of the gods. A common theme though that the discovery of the third Core would result in the End Times that would change the galaxy. Each of the Kiith's debated on what to do if the Core was found with some arguing for its restoration whilst others felt the past should remain buried. However, the collective Kiith's ultimately turned to Kiith S'jet for a decision with them really turning to Karan S'Jet who had helped guide the Kushan back home. Karan suggested that the Core be kept in a museum so that all Hiigarans could see the trials that they went through to return to their homeworld with it being placed in a publicly accessible site in the capital. In the aftermath, the Hiigarans set about the monumental task of reconstruction and rebuilding their civilization. Within the Kiith Assembly, power balances began to affect some of the lesser kiith's which saw the Somtaaw deciding to devote their resources into interstellar mining.
A new threat began to emerge from the Eastern Fringe along the path of the Vaygr Reaches. The region was home to the aggressive Vagyr tribes who typically performed small guerrilla raids and were not a massive threat. However, a figure known as Makaan had emerged who had united the tribes and even enlisted some of the Taiidan under his cause where they began instigating overwhelming attacks against Hiigaran space. The speed of their incursions that stripped entire worlds of resources led to the conclusion that Makaan had uncovered the Third Core. In fact, he was hailed as the Sajuuk-Khar that had united the Vaygr and was bringing about the time of prophecy as his forces made a push towards Hiigara. The fierceness of the attacks frayed the Galactic Council which in a few short years fell to border skirmishes that led to the entire Inner Rim falling into warfare and the collapse of the Council. Once again the Kiith's turned to Karan S'jet who decided to lead her people once more and bond with the Mothership in order to save them from destruction in this turbulent time. As a result, a new Mothership was constructed known as the Pride of Hiigara.
In appearance, the Kushan and their Hiigaran ancestors bipedal beings that resembled humans.
Kushan society was divided into loose family associations that consisted of hundreds of thousands of people. An extended family grouping was known as a Kiith (Plural: Kiithid) that existed from their time on Hiigara. These consisted of a loose hierarchy that was based on a person's social position within the family. Originally, the social position was primarily based on seniority but by the time civilisation was rebuilt on Kharak technology had changed many aspects of Kushan society. Family ranking by this point was based more on wealthy or personal influence rather than age. Organisation within the kiith was recursive by nature with it modelled on a core family unit whereby a single family had a primary leader, a secondary then a group of dependents. The kiith organisation followed a similar system with a primary family that decided policy decisions with a secondary family hearing disputes whilst making recommendations after which a number of families of lesser power swore allegiance to the primary. Among the Kushan, the primary family was referred to as the Kiith-Sa. This was not a static structure with it being open to change as families could change their primary allegiances as they saw fit. A family's position within the kiith rose and fell depending on how many swore allegiance to them. In rare instances, a family could move from one kiith to another or even attempt to form their own kiith. In ancient times, the kiith-sa could direct all within the kiith to war or could demand families to dedicate time and finances on special projects or even more an entire kiith to another region. However, by modern times on Kharak, the kiith-sa became more of a political and financial leader that only acted on the wishes of the entire kiith with decisions based on referendums. Traditionally, the kiithids concentrated their power in one or two disciplines with the families gathered to advance a particular field. Alliances among the kiiths were based on mutual interests and tended to lead to closer ties or even complete reorganisations. Modern Kharakid society had slowly transferred the power of the kiithid to the individual. Despite that, kiiths remained a powerful means of social identity as they began to seek out a single goal that unified their people into a single grand kiith. However, old traditions died hard and some kiiths placed the importance of themselves over the Kushan race as a whole.
Among the various Kiithid were:
- Kiith Sjet : an ancient and respected kiith who were said to have ties of descent all the way to the first city of Khar-Toba.
- Kiith Soban : the Kiith Soban or "Grey Brotherhood" origins were not fully known but history recorded that it was traced to an incident where two vassal kiithid that resided along the second sea of Kharak were invaded by temple men from a stronger neighbouring kiith. The vassals fought back furiously to defend their home where they succeeded in killing a few of the raiders. This angered the larger kiith who sought revenge and decided to punish the vassals even though they had surrendered. As a result, every member of the vassal kiith's were brutally murdered in a manner that was abhorrent to Kushan society. The survivors fled across the Sparkling Desert to carry news of this atrocity to the kiith-sa with their leader being a man who came to be known as Soban the Red. He recounted the story to his kiith-sa and bade the assembling of an army that he would lead to punish the invaders for their crimes. However, the kiith-sa refused to act as the feared repercussions of challenging a stronger kiith and the vassals were forced to bind their blood to the murderers. In disgust, Soban and his followers removed their ties to their kiith and departed where they took revenge against the marauding kiith that were destroyed completely. Thus, the kiith Soban were born that were a martial kiith but unlike others was actually landless and without territory. Instead, they operated as mercenaries with Sobanii participating in every conflict around Kharak. In time, their soldiers and commanders became highly prized where when hired the Soban wore the colours of their respective employers kiith until the completion of their terms of service. It was known that they had established the Red Academy as an training institute for warriors.
- Kiith Naabal : a secretive kiith whose origins were unknown with some speculating that they were descendants of the engineering core of the ship that brought the Exiles to Kharak. Some believed that it was the persecutions of the Gaalsien that caused the Naabal to retreat into their hidden valley where they remained in hiding for centuries. It was only in the aftermath of the Heresy Wars that the Naabal revealed themselves to the rest of the kiithids though they themselves refused to divulge much of their past.
- Kiith Manaan : considered the strangest of all the kiiths, the Mananni were known as the Travelers who came in a variety of different appearances but were all members of a single family.
- 'Kiith Somtaaw : not much was known about the history of this ancient family except that it could trace an unbroken linage back to 1,000 on Kharak. In that time, they came to make their ancestral homes in the peaks and valleys of the Kohntala Mountain range in the northern hemisphere. During the first and second centuries, their holdings were said to had been rich and varied with these varying from farms, dams and mills to fortresses and towns that included the walled cities of Hamelin and Gydeo. Kiith Somtaaw was noted to be self-sufficient with a great surplus in food that allowed it to prosper in trade. In 178, Kharakian artists from various disciplines came to gather under the patronage of Teigor Somtaaw who was the most enlightened kiith'sid of his time. These skilled workers unified under a Kiith Somtaaw project that was the construction of a series of temples on the slopes of the mountain Lungma Jiin (Translation: The Roof of the World). This saw the building of 33 temples in total starting sands of Kasaar to the summit of what was the highest known mountain at the time. These temples of the Somtaaw came to be known as The Shimmering Path" and for nearly 400 years it was considered the height of spiritual devoted for religious Kharakians who walked down the path at least once in their lives. Their occupation in interstellar mining was reflected in Kiith's fleet.
- Kiith LiirHra : a kiith that was originally two different families namely the Kiith Hraal and the Kiith Liir. Its origins were traced to the last century on Kharak when the manufacturing families of the Hraal believed the future lay in orbital systems. This saw them attempt to influence the Sa Hraal into investing in aerospace technologies but their gambit failed. This saw the entire manufacturing branch of Kiith Hraal breaking away and joining a relatively small kiith that specialised in space technologies thus becoming the Kiith LiirHra. The new kiith took the lead in design and construction of the Mothership above Kharak.
- Kiith Gaalsien : among all the kiithid, the Gaalsien were the most ancient with some of the oldest Kharakian documents bearing their sigil. Their origins in relation to the collapse of Khar-Toba were not known but by the time civilisation was re-established on Kharak that it was the Gaalsien who had become a spiritual and political powerhouse. They were one of the three major religious kiithid that included the Ferriil and the Somtaaw with the Gaalsien preaching the strongest message that their people were punished by Great Maker Sajuuk, whose Hand Shapes What Is. The religious dogma was one of righteous suffering and humility with them claiming that Sajuuk had cast out the Kushan people to Kharak from a celestial paradise as punishment for their arrogance. The kiith's theologians preached that deviation from the most accepted and ritualised survival methods extended their punishment on Kharak and prevented their rise back to the heavens. The Gaalsien survived and prospered in the early days on Kharak in the period of ecological disasters between 75-250. However, afterwards, kiith's began to penetrate into the more temperate polar region where the innotive kiithid's began to regain power thus causing the Gaalsien's own powerbase to fade somewhat. Archaeologists believed the kiith started the Heresy Wars in an attempt to bring all the lesser kiithid's under its banner.
- Kiith Siidim :
- Kiith Paktu : formerly a small farming kiith that lived on the slopes by the Salt Sea. A turbulent time affected the kiith when the rift formed between the Kiith Siid and Kiith Gaalsien that were the most powerful of the kiithids of the north in that time. In 462, the Siidim Council enacted their new Dogma whereby that they themselves were of divine origin and that all other kiiths were native to Kharak and thus inferior with blood tainted by corrupted sand. This saw cruel pogroms being made against non-Siidim kiiths with amongst the harshest of these measures being the Clean Water Act that forbid non-Siidim from living at the headwaters of a river or stream. The Siidim claimed that the other kiiths would foul the water that the pure Siidim downstream would drink. As a result, hundreds of families were displaced by Siidim temple men who forced them out of their ancestral homes and sent downstream with the belongings that they could carry with them. In 488, the Kiith Paktu were among those of the dispossessed that suffered from the Siidim pogroms.
- Kiith Kaalel :
- Kiith Magann :
- Kiith Sagald :
- Kiith Jaraci :
- Kiith Tambuur :
Certain Kiith developed their own companies that produced equipment and technology such as S'jet Aerospace. On Kharak, the Kiith of the north formed an allied government that looked to re-establish their space presence as the planet was dying with these becoming the Coalition of the Northern Kiithid. A legislative body that unified the Kiith was the Great Daiamid that dated from the time of the Hiigaran empire. On Kharak, kiith-sa from all around the planet met at the Great Daiamid in the capital of Tiir to debate global policy and resolve legal conflicts among the kiiths. After returning to Hiigara, an information gathering body within their reformed government was Hiigaran Intelligence.
From the Gaalsien came a group that were called the Khaaneph (Translation: Godless) that were a group that inhabited the deep deserts. They were said to believe in nothing and were not a Kiith but rather scavengers who took anything from corpses to equipment for raw material.
Great deeds were said to be recorded within the Books of Knowledge.
Among the Kushan on Kharak, there was a pantheon of deities that included Viin Cal who was the god of hunters. A common belief among the races of the galaxy that included the ancient Hiigarans and the Kushan was that surrounding a deity known as Sajuuk who was known as the "Great Maker" or as "He Whose Hand Shapes What Is". It was said that the Hyperspace Cores were gifts by Sajuuk the Great Maker to his favoured people and that the discovery of all three relics would herald the End Times. In that time, the Sajuuk-Khar that were the chosen people would stand unchanged by His Hand. Unknown to anyone, Sajuuk was one of the ancient Progenitors who crafted the Three Hyperspace Cores.
The Kushan and Hiigaran language had many words that included:
- Faagan : from the Gaalsien dialect that when translated meant "the Bound and the Blind".
- Faagani : from the Gaalsien dialect that when loosely translated meant "Blind Followers of a False God" and was used as a term by the Gaalsien for the Northern Coalition.
- Griitidim : a term that meant "sand people" that was a term used by the Sidiim that claimed they were of divine origin and that the other kiiths were sand people native to Kharak.
- Khaaneph : an ancient word that translated to mean "Godless".
- Paaura : a declaration of revenge against another.
- Lungma Jiin : translated to mean, "The Roof of the World" that was a term given to a mountain range on Kharak.
It was noted that the Hiigaran people were a proud race.
Vehicles developed by the Kushan on Kharak included:
- NBR-12A Science Team Baserunner :
- STS-32 Foreman-class Salvager :
- NRG-18 Horizon-class Railgun :
- Ifriit-class Heavy Carrier :
- SJCC-14 Sakala-class Command Carrier : these Command/Exploration Carriers were the cutting edge of Nabaal design and S'jet modular technology. The first of these vessels was the Sobaan-sponsored Sakala that was produced in 1105.
- SJF-14 Hammer-class Strike Fighter :
- SJB-18 Anvil-class Tactical Bomber :
For large scale construction efforts, the Kushan came to develop the Phased Disassembler Array (PDA) that was a series of fusion torches which could reduce resources such as asteroid chunks into their component elements.
Among the spacecraft they developed in time were:
- Khar-toba-class Transport : a vessel used by the ancient Hiigaran empire with a fleet of such craft used by the Exiles in their journey to Kharak.
- Imperator-class Carrier :
- Explorer-class Deep Space Mining Vessel : a class of ship produced by Kiith Somtaaw who looked to expand its powerbase by engaging in interstellar mining operations. After being granted access to the Mothership, their engineers were able to produce the Explorer-class within days with multiple such craft being fielded. The ship was near-Mothership class vessel that could adapt to almost any situation through the use of modules that it could construct itself in deep space. These ships were intended for exploration and mining but had a full complement of turrets for protection along with facilities to produce other craft. They required a crew of 1150 but could have an additional 2,000 added to its complement who could be placed in cold storage with the vessel being able to operate on deep space missions for an entire year before having to return.
- Kushan Mothership :
The Kushan had pioneered a neural interface technology that allowed for an individual to be linked to a Mothership. In this role, they served as Fleet Command and could advise as well as direct space assets.
- Karan S'jet : a young neuronics expert who offered a solution to system coherency of the various functions of the Mothership by suggesting using a living brain as an interface where she volunteered herself to become Fleet Command of the Mothership and guided the vessel in the return to Hiigara.
- Iifrit Naabal-sa :
- Majiir Paktu :
- Soban the Red :
- Teigor Somtaaw :
- Arban Hraal :
- Miirpat Gaalsien-sa :
- Per Doine :
- Leykab Jaraci :
- Deckard Naabal :
- Iifrit Tambuur :
- Mevath Sagald : a female archaeologist that led the study of the rediscovered first city of Khar-Toba where she uncovered the Guidestone that showed the Kushan's true homeworld of Hiigara.
- The Kushan featured in the setting of Homeworld.
- Homeworld: Cataclysm:
- Homeworld 2:
- Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak: