On March 5, 2013, Wing Commander: New Horizon MUSH was shut down due to lack of activity. Thanks to the staff and players for your support. We had a good run and created some amazing memories. Keep in touch on the Facebook page for the game, which will be preserved.
The entire game's codebase and database (minus player information) has been open-sourced and released to the public, and the game itself is back up to help support the code at wcmush.com 2199!
(Note that this page is just a brief summary. Much more information is available about the Kilrathi, if you are interested in playing a Kilrathi character; contact a Guide in-game for some resources.)
The Kilrathi are a sentient, felinoid (cat-like) race, originally from the planet Kilrah. A naturally warrior-driven, militaristic race with a deep sense of honor and Clan identity, the Kilrathi warred against the Terran Confederation for almost 60 years. After decades of fighting with little advantage gained or lost by either side, the war came to a collapse after the Kilrathi briefly joined forces with the Confederation to combat the Nephilim, an insectoid race that invaded the galaxy with little warning; following the successful defeat of Nephilim forces, the Joint Task Force quickly dissolved and the war was brought to a close with the Battle of Kilrah, and the surrender of the Empire of Kilrah. (see our Origins page for more information)
Kilrathi society is sharply delineated by caste, with Thrak'hra (nobles/highborn) and Kilra'hra (lowborn) different not only from their birth, bearing, and training, but also even their physical appearance (generally, lowborn Kilrathi have coarser, more mottled furs, while noble Kilrathi have purer, more colorful fur; Kilra'hra also generally have blunter noses, flatter heads, and unsharpened teeth). Many humans will have never met a lowborn Kilrathi as they rarely are permitted to venture much outside of deep Kilrathi space, and are not allowed to hunt or war.
The religion followed by most Kilrathi, to some extent or another, is the worship of Sivar, a mercurial warrior goddess, represented by her Priestesses. Sivar temples are a common sight in Kilrathi-held area, and the war was dedicated in Her name.
Kilrathi society is also broken up by Clan. While there have been hundreds of Clans in Kilrathi history, only eight remained by the time of the beginning of the Empire of Kilrah's war against the Confederation, and with the war's ending, the number has been reduced further still: in the Enigma Sector, only the Sihkag, Hhallas, Ragitagha, Kurutak, and Ja'targk clans are present, all members of the Kilrathi Commonwealth.
SIHKAG: The Sihkag clan never fared well under the Empire's regime, continually being looked upon as the lowest of the Clans, and even at one point having their sacred lands and holdings on Kilrah destroyed. Due in no small part to their low status in the old Empire, the Sihkags were not nearly as decimated as the other Clans at the end of the war, simply because many of them were assigned to transport duty, serving as guards on captive planets, or otherwise on backwater duty. Whether in revenge for this treatment, or due to the ever-present Sihkag pragmatism, they were quick to support the surrender of the Empire, and immediately began negotiations with the sector governments that largely replaced the Terran Confederation to find not only accords of peace, but mutual prosperity. The Sihkags are one of the cornerstones of the Kilrathi Commonwealth and have flourished in number and prosperity since the collapse of the Empire.
HHALLAS: As a Clan that always prided itself on its military strength, particularly its space combat/naval capabilities, the Hhallas Clan suffered from its own internal succession crisis after the war's end. One venerable noble after another stepped forward to claim the Hhallas dagger, and yet, in the 40-some years, little was accomplished and the Clan languished, unable to achieve any accord with either the Commonwealth or the remnants of the Empire. Finally, three years prior to our game's opening, a small sect of young nobles came to power, many of whom had never known war with the humans or known anything but the defeats in the final years of the war. Emboldened by fresh leadership and a new perspective, the Hhallas warriors chose an aggressive young Baron to lead them, who has promptly negotiated the acceptance of the Hhallas Clan into the Commonwealth, where they are once again making a name for themselves as skilled pilots.
RAGITAGHA: A Clan of traders and long-distance cargo pilots, the Ragitagha populace as a whole viewed the loss of their leadership as an unfortunate inconvenience. Nobles that were not in the Kilrah system at the time of its attack quickly stepped forward and set up a provisional internal council, and a new Baron was appointed days later. The Ragitagha have not, as a Clan, expressed any particular fealty and are nominally an independent Clan, preferring to leave its individual members and families to negotiate their own allegiances. The Ragitagha continue to be a prolific, and, due to their nature, highly visible Clan throughout the universe, but especially in the Enigma Sector, where, recognizing the economic power and knowledge that they possess, the Commonwealth have extended an offer of citizenship to any Ragitagha with no criminal history in Commonwealth or allied space.
KURUTAK: As the backbone of the old Empire's infantry forces, the Kurutak population is a shadow of its former numbers. Those that have left view their inability to prevent the razing of their homeworld as dishonor of the highest order, and have, as a Clan, largely strived to change their inherently violent and militaristic favor. Kurutak believe that they are in Sivar's disfavor, and no longer permitted to hunt or kill in Her honor as they once did. They have chosen to throw in with the Commonwealth and are, in many ways, a Clan in search of identity, purpose, and a method to reunite themselves with their god.
JA'TARGK: In the chaos of the War's ending, it was no surprise that as one of the more Sivarist Clans, the Ja'targk population, many of whom were priestesses, turned to their god once more for guidance. Allowing the dishonor of the destruction of the Temple of Sivar on Kilrah caused many Ja'targk to commit ritual suicide, but there was a strong group within the Clan that raised that Sivar had not abandoned them, merely set another challenge in front of them: that of re-uniting Her children, the 8 Clans, to one unity of purpose. The Ja'targk priestesses have therefore spread to the Commonwealth, to spread the message of reunification with the other Clans; thus far, no sincere efforts have been made by either side's leadership.
While the Commonwealth represents the majority of Kilrathi society, older Kilrathi remember the three clans that have disappeared for one reason or another:
CAXKI: The Clan with the most invested in the future of the Empire suffered hard when it collapsed. Nearly all the Caxki members were either on Kilrah when it was torched, or killed in the space action immediately prior. The sight of a Caxki member in the former Empire's lands is rare, and when they are seen, they universally reviled, to the point of being very nearly treated as a sub-race, although there is talk in some arakh houses that the Caxki planned the whole thing from the beginning and are just biding their time... and counting the offenses laid against their Clan, to be paid back in full...
KIRANKA: Under the leadership of Baron Cal'x nar Kiranka, who was said to often have the ear of Emperor Thrakhath, the Clan became prestigious and a common sight in the leadership of both the naval and ground forces of the Empire. Like most of the clans, their numbers were reduced severely by the Kilrah battle and cataclysm. The Kirankas were outraged by the surrender offered by the Caxki, but unlike others, they steadfastly refused to abide by the terms and have returned to their ancestral territories. At present, there has been little communication with the Kiranka Clan, diplomatic or otherwise, and their status remains a mystery.
SOM'MERS: Always the most secretive of the Kilrathi clans, and the least numerous, they became even more reclusive and insular when it was revealed to all that Baron Xeraz nar Som'mers and many of his top advisers were the principal architects of the Caxki/Ragitagha succession/cloning incidents. Late in the war, the Som'mers members became more and more rarely seen in Kilrathi space, with communications to the Clan official offices often left unreturned, taxes unpaid, and so on. Roughly 12 hours before the impact of the Confederation Corvette on Kilrah, the official Som'mers clan buildings were searched and found to be completely deserted, a fact that raised a minor fuss that was, of course, completely overshadowed a few hours later. Since the irradiation of Kilrah, no Som'mers member has been seen anywhere in the former Empire, Confederation, or Union lands, although there are, as always, whispers of strange encounters on the periphery of space. But people will say all sorts of things...right?