Though Davion forces control more territory than any other House, Davion's great influence in the Inner Sphere derives as much from an illustrious past as from its extensive holdings. Founded in the wake of popular resistance to the Terran Hegemony, Federated Commonwealth society contains democratic elements, but is fundamentally an aristocracy. The Federated Commonwealth is largely a society of a few very wealthy, highly developed worlds and a mass of more provincial ones.
A succession of powerful rulers culminated in the reign of visionary Prince Hanse Davion, who ushered in a new era of military strength as well as scientific advancement for the Federated Suns, making them the most tactically- and technologically-advanced of the Successor States. His heir, Prince Victor Steiner-Davion, returned from the successful struggle against the Clans to find his throne usurped by Katrina Steiner-Davion. Reluctant to drag his state into war against his sister, he eventually came to oppose her openly.
Perhaps the most aggressive of the Successor States, the Draconis Combine was founded by Shiro Kurita, an accomplished statesman and a ruthless conqueror. Shiro embraced and embodied bushido, the "way of the warrior," and lived this philosophy by forging a realm notable both for its cultured civil order and its military might.
Of all the armies of the Inner Sphere, none is as universally feared and respected as that of House Kurita's Draconis Combine and its Mustered Soldiery (the DCMS). With fighting skills learned in the finest academies and tempered by the ancient code of bushido, the MechWarriors of the DCMS know no equals in skill. They also have made a name for themselves in butchery, most memorably the 2796 massacre of the population of Kentares IV.
Following the destruction of Clan Smoke Jaguar by a multi-national force fielded by the renascent Star League, Clan Nova Cat forged an alliance with the Draconis Combine and now occupies its Irece Prefecture.
House Liao / Capellan Federation
Leader: Chancellor Sun-Tzu Liao Capital: Sian (as of 2367) Founded: 2366
The last Great House to be formed, Liao has remained the smallest of the Successor States, challenged along every meter of its borders with the Federated Commonwealth and the Free Worlds League. Carved out of the dissolution of the Terran Hegemony, the Capellan Confederation was shaped into a military power by the warlord Duke Liao. He likewise shaped a society that, while authoritarian, is fanatic in its dedication to resisting the influence of the surrounding states.
After the attrition of the Succession Wars culminated in the devastating loss of almost half its worlds to the Federated Suns in the Fourth War, a new Chancellor, Sun-Tzu Liao assumed power. He has made great strides in regaining the lost glory of his House and is currently inspiring his people through the cultural renaissance of Xin Sheng (or, "new birth") which has led to, among other things, the re-conquest of many lost worlds.
House Marik / Free Worlds League
Leader: Captain-General Thomas Marik Capital: Atreus Founded: 2271
The oldest of the Successor States of the Inner Sphere, the Free Worlds League was the first major region of the Inner Sphere to defy Terran rule and declare independence. The League has always been the least centralized state, and while its many societies enjoy great autonomy, they are usually unable and unwilling to join their efforts.
Spared from the ravages of the Clan invasion, the Free Worlds League flourished as an arms supplier to the rest of the Inner Sphere. Captain-General Thomas Marik patiently guided the Free Worlds League Military through a long-overdue reformation as his rivals battled the invaders. Bolstered by the League's powerful military-industrial complex, the FWLM now stands as one of the largest and best-equipped forces in the Inner Sphere.
The Lyran Commonwealth started as a coalition of trading partners, allied to defend themselves against brigands and the expansionist Draconis Combine. For centuries, House Steiner was the dominant mercantile power of the Inner Sphere and the wealthiest of the great Houses.
The invasion of the Clans leveled the field somewhat. As a result of the conflict, House Marik was enriched by an influx of new trade...which quickly prompted House Steiner to substantially improve their military. Now, though their generals are still often better known for their political and social skills than for their tactics, House Steiner fields forces equipped with sophisticated weaponry and large numbers of heavy 'Mechs. House Steiner delights in ostentatious displays of firepower.
THE GREAT CLANS
Clan Ghost Bear
Leader: Khan Bjorn Jorgensson Capital: Alshain Like its namesake, Clan Ghost Bear is a patient predator, approaching strategic issues with a "wait and see" attitude. This has enabled them to act intelligently in cases where other Clans have rushed to imprudent action. But when the Bear Clan does act, the results are swift and often extreme.
Among the strongest of the Clans, the Bears have always been a bastion of stability. This stability has been called into question of late after their shift to the Warden camp and the subsequent relocation of their entire Clan to the Inner Sphere. Cautious by nature, they adopt new ways slowly, but are as fierce in defending what is theirs. They never rush into situations unprepared, and so are rarely surprised or defeated, though they may also miss opportunities.
Clan Jade Falcon
Leader: Khan Marthe Pryde Capital: Sudeten
Clan Jade Falcon has historically ranked among the most powerful and active Clans. Aggressive and tenacious, this Clan constantly strives to advance its own agenda without losing sight of their driving goal to conquer the Inner Sphere and restore the Star League under the rule of the Clans. Staunch traditionalists, the Falcons were the driving force behind the development of the Crusader philosophy.
Mauled in the recent battles against their longtime rivals, Clan Wolf, the Falcons faced the possibility of losing their prominence in Clan society. Khan Marthe Pryde forestalled this catastrophe by leading her warriors in an assault on the Lyran Alliance. By driving deep into Alliance territory, she demonstrated that the Jade Falcons had not lost their edge.
Like its fellow Clans occupying the Inner Sphere, Jade Falcon is relatively contained within its borders, giving and taking a system here and there with the Lryan Alliance and Clan Wolf, but generally observing the status quo.
Leader: Khan Vladimir Ward (Crusaders) Khan Phelan Kell and saKhan Marco Hall (Wardens) Capital: Tamar
Following the defeat at Tukayyid which halted the Clan invasion of the Inner Sphere, the Wolves split along the major fault line in Clan philosophy, into Crusader and Warden factions. Wardens are committed to protecting the Inner Sphere from outside threats until a new Star League can arise naturally at the behest of the Houses. Crusaders mean to reestablish the unity of the Star League by force, conquering the corrupt systems of the Inner Sphere. Needless to say, the peace treaty does not sit well with the Crusaders among the Wolf Clan.
The Wolves are long-time rivals of the Jade Falcon Clan, and recently fought a campaign against them which nearly resulted in the Wolves' destruction. Though it has survived, the Wolves are now divided into Crusader and Warden factions. Thus divided, the future of the Wolves is uncertain.