|Type||Interplanetary law enforcers|
|Leader||Director-General Lin Camulan|
|Headquarters|| Bastion, Absalom Station|
Peacewatch, Vimal, Verces
|Goals|| Enforce laws of the Pact Worlds|
Maintain peace within the Pact Worlds
|Scope||Pact Worlds system|
|Images of Stewards|
Source: Core Rulebook, pg(s). 480
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The Stewards were founded on Verces millennia before the Gap, at the same time as the unification of the Ring of Nations, after a series of wars or societal upheavals. This theory is supported by the obelisks of Vimal, a nation of Verces, which bear the following inscription followed by different, undecipherable magical runes:
|“||From strength unity, from unity strength. Thus do we stand against chaos, thus do we honor their sacrifice.||”|
During ancient times, the Stewards remained neutral from all national or familial ties in order to fully commit to their job of policing nations at odds with each other. Their effectiveness as soldiers and diplomats were recorded in numerous accounts, ensuring all countries' loyalty to the Ring of Nations and defending them from the outside. The Stewards were credited with ensuring the peace on Verces that followed the end of the Gap.
When the Veskarium invaded the Golarion system, leading to the signature of the Absalom Pact, the Stewards saw the similarities to the upheaval that led to their foundation. They built a new headquarters in Absalom Station, and expanded their scope from Verces to the entire Pact Worlds. This event received a mixed reception: many people objected to soldiers from Verces considering themselves as protectors and enforcers of other planets, while others suspected that they were trying to undermine the authority of planetary governments, secretly because they were concerned that bribing or otherwise influencing the Stewards would be too difficult. In order to address these concerns, the Pact Council formally gave the Stewards the leeway and authority. In the ensuing centuries, the Stewards have diversified their membership and earned a reputation as neutral mediators or warriors.
The Stewards are divided into three branches: Overwatch, the starship fleet; Constabulary, the planetary police; and Ops, or special operations. Stewards begin as a neophyte and graduate into a deputy constable. In the Constabulary or Ops, they progress through the following ranks: constable, agent, staff agent (an administrative post) or special agent (with little administrative duty), inspector, chief inspector, deputy inspector, and director. Overwatch has different ranks: lieutenant (equivalent to inspector), captain (chief inspector), vice admiral (deputy inspector), and admiral (director). The title legate, which indicates distinguished service, may be awarded to members of any rank.
The Stewards collectively chose one of their own to act as a representative to the Directorate of the Pact Council. The officer, known as the Director-General, has no voting rights within the Council or Directorate, but serves only in an advisory capacity and to carry out the Council's decisions.
Since the Stewards are a flexible, modular, mobile force, and leaders usually have to work with agents available on location, any Steward can issue orders to lower-ranking ones, who are expected to follow. However, to avoid interbranch conflicts, Stewards usually avoid giving orders to lower-ranking members of different branches if a counterpart from that branch is available, and when orders conflict, agents are expected to speak up.
Overwatch is the Stewards' largest branch and enjoys the most freedom. Each starship is commanded by a captain, who reports to a vice admiral, who in turn reports to one of three admirals, currently Echo-7, Grovok Dorgoda and Noor Irular. Overwatch has three flagships: the Paramount, the Steadfast and the Touchstone.
Constabulary, the branch most often associated with the Stewards, consists of police officers and ambassadors. Constabulary agents primarily support the local government, only acting with the government's approval. Each Constabulary post is led by an officer of at least chief inspector rank, depending on the station's size. Some high-ranking Stewards coordinate multiple installations. Constabulary is led by three directors: Deepadra Evosco, Kirnaxion and Veshak.
Ops is loosely sructured within the Stewards. Ops teams are usually ad hoc and include Overwatch or Constabulary members with special, valuable skills, who are permanently assigned into Ops as special agents after proving themselves. Ops agents undertake unusual covert missions and operate outside of the Stewards hierarchy: each team is led by a ranking Ops agent, who can move into logistics positions after proving themselves. Many missions eschew red tape to quickly respond, only receiving approval after the operation has already begun.
Ops is commanded by a group of deputy directors officially part of Constabulary, who collect intelligence and identify threats that need to be dealt with by Ops, with the help of an administrative force of other agents. These deputy directors report to Constabulary's directors, but some jobs also involve Overwatch.
Ops agents are allowed to refuse orders from other branches without question by identifying themselves as an Ops agent, in order to prevent potential explications from compromising secret activities. Such refusals are logged and reviewed by Ops, who confirms whether a refusal was sanctioned or not.
Stewards are both warriors who pursue criminals across the Pact Worlds, and diplomats who negotiate agreements to maintain the often complex and fraught relationships between member worlds. They prefer the use of soft power over military might, in an effort to maintain the fragile equilibrium of the Pact Worlds.
- Matt Miller. (December 9, 2016). Top of the Table: The Starfinder Interview, Page 4, Game Informer.
- Lyz Liddell. (2018). The Stewards. The Rune Drive Gambit, p. 52–57. Paizo Inc. ISBN 978-1-64078-076-7
- Logan Bonner et al. (2017). Starfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook, p. 428-429. Paizo Inc. ISBN 978-1-60125-956-1