1996 in TOS history
The TOSNet bulletin board system is created.
The Orions, which had been a minor empire for several years, having spent time under both Klingon and Federation protection, are abolished. The Klingons declare Genocide against all remaining Orions, and issue standing orders for Orions to be killed on sight.
In March, the temporary version of space that had been online since mid-1995 was taken down to allow speedier implementation of the new complete version which would include Engineering and Combat systems.
New guidelines were issued for ship construction and the initial ship classes of Battleship, cruiser, destroyer, scout, transport, and cargo ship were announced. All empires were told they would start out with three planets, one starbase, a cruiser, a scout, a transport and a cargo ship when space was launched. Maximum room numbers were established for each class, requiring some empires to reconstruct old ships or build new ones.
RP languished a bit in the summer as all Empires awaited the release of space.
TOS Space 3.0 is launched in early September. For the first time, collision with space objects is possible, as is normal ship-to-ship combat. Ship classes now have distinct performance, speed, firepower and defensive capabilities. With minor modifications this is the version of space that has been running since.
Many empires had experienced problems with ship collisions under the new system, leading the directors to declare a grace period during which collisions could be retconned while people learned how the new system worked.
In the Federation, USS Yorktown is lost to collision shortly after the end of the grace period.
The Klingons begin gradually becoming more aggressive.