The first class of Battlestar ever created, as well as the first ships of the Colonial navy. The Ares Class was created as a sign of unity and peace between the Twelve Colonies, Humans and Cylons... atleast officially. The government wanted to return control of the Colonial Fleet to human hands. This class had advanced computer systems onbord and had a rellativly small crew of humans and Cylons, with around 1960 humans and 310 Cylons. At least 3 ships of this class were built; all of them are thought to have been lost to their Cylon crew when the Cylon war broke out.
The Colonial Union was sort of like a combination of the EU and the UN. It was the single most significant international organisation in the colonies and was the medium through which the “cubit” (i.e. the colonial Euro), the inter-colonial court (i.e. the Hague/Geneva) and the Colonial Guard were controlled and managed.
The fleet was the space arm of the policing and peacekeeping force known as the “Colonial Guard”. The Guard was a combination Peace Keeping/Armed Police/Coast Guard. It preformed operations similar to those preformed by NATO on behave of the UN, or like the UN peacekeeping operations, or like the anti-piracy and smuggling opps in the Mediterranean and off the Somali coast. It served as a big stick that forced colonies and organisations to respect the inter-colonial laws and upheld them where colonies lacked jurisdiction. Every member state in the union was required to fund ships and contribute personal. All the equipment used by the force was chosen as the result of a competition comparing the standard equipment of the member states. The Caprican Viper was chosen as it’s fighters, the Scorpion “Cutters/Rangers” were chosen as it’s main patrol craft, the Virgon AR-40 (Assault Rifle for the 40’s, the weapon would remain the colonial service rifle until after the Cylon war, by the time of the attacks being used for ceremonial purposes and kept in reserve stores (This is the SA-80)) to give a few examples.
However, In the years preceding the Cylon war it was decided that there was a need for a more flexible patrol craft that could better handle security in the increasingly volatile situation posed by the entry of Cylons into colonial society. The biggest project in the history of the Colonial Guard was started 4 years before the Cylon war and the first of it’s Battlestars were commissioned, one for each member state (10 full members at this time, with Tauron suspended, Aquaria not independent yet, and at least two observers, Hybernia and Aquaria).
The first ship of the class was the Triton. More of as a basic proof of concept ship then a true member of the class. The Triton was actually nothing more then a Liberty class Battlecruiser hull nearing completion that was donated to the project by the Caprican government with the primary innovation of the Triton class, the flight pods, strapped to the sides. It was this 3 hulled design that gave both the ship and the class it’s name. The Triton was undergoing trials just six months after the start of the Battlestar project, although much off the armor was left off, and many of the internal finishing touches were missing. This was due to the desire to get it into service as soon as possible. The Triton was used as a patrol ship for the 6 months up to the launch of the follow up ship, the Ares, after which it was used as a technological testbed. It was lost to it’s Cylon crew at the start of the war and was eventually destroyed by the Battlestar Athena.
The first true vessel of the class, and technically the very first modern Battlestar. Built on the promise that it would be officially a part of the Caprican fleet on loan to the Colonial Guard and could be re-directed to Caprican service at anytime to compensate the donation of the Triton, the Ares was completed one year after the Triton proved the concept to be sound. The Ares was due to attend the launch ceremony of the Battlestar Olympia when just days before the Cylons aboard realised that a Cylon rebelion was immanent. Realizing that the war would be devastating and that neither side was likely to win and after consulting with the ships commander they decide to collect the families of the (Caprican) crew and leave colonial space. Eventually the human crew was wiped out by an illness contracted during a supply gathering operation. Long after the Ares was found by the Battlestar Prometheus only to be separated from it during a battle with the Terran Alliance. After this its new human commander, the then Colonel Ryan, ordered the ship to return to the colonies were it was reunited with the Prometheus and other survivors of the Cylon holocaust. It is now an intricate part of the Copernicus defense force and its pre-war level of sophistication allow it to operate just as smoothly as any modern ship.
Technically the first true Battlestar commissioned into the Colonial Guard (as the Ares was officially part of the Caprican Fleet) the Atlantia was also to be it’s flagship. Atlantia was launched two years before the War and one after the Ares. All Cylons on-board were offline at the time of the download that started the war, due to a training exercise as part of its shakedown cruise. When the crew discovered this, they destroyed every Cylon on-board, and entered the ship into the fight. The Atlantia became the Flagship of the newly formed Colonial Fleet, a roll it would keep until the 2nd year, when it was destroyed in a concentrated Cylon campaign to defeat it. The ship left a lasting legacy. Its name and hull paint job, would become tradition for the Colonial fleet flagship, starting with the enlarged Jupiter class Atlantia, right up until the final Nova class.
Launched just days before the war started, the Olympia was to represent Picon, and would go on to have the longest history of any ship still in serve at the time of the second war. When the Cylons rebelled they gained control of the ship. It became a part of the Cylon fleet, heavily modified with new flight pod entrances, that were smaller, to avoid enemy fire, but made possible by the automation qualities of Cylon Raiders. In the 7th year of the war the Olympia was retaken by Colonial Marines, and rejoined the human forces. By the time of the 2nd war, it had become a training ship for the fleet. It is unknown if it survived the attacks.