Sol, Genari, and Ma'Alaketh have Force Fields, aka shields -- they can be powered up and act as additional defense, absorbing incoming damage. Shield Tiers: Tier 1 - for every power applied, 1 shield point is available (force fields usually don't exceed 12 strength) Tier 2 - for every power applied, 2 shield points is available (force fields usually don't exceed 20 strength) Tier 3 - for every power applied, 3 shield points is available (force fields usually don't exceed 30 strength) The higher the tier, strength and so on, the greater the weight and crew requirements. SOL - All Sol ships have some sort of force field, usually tier 1 for weaker ships, tier 2 for the rest; only a few of the most powerful and specialty ships have tier 3. Genari - Lower tier Genari ships don't have force fields, and rely on armor instead. Otherwise tier 1 and tier 2 force fields are common. They've hit a technology limit however; they have not exceeded 16 strength tier 2, and have not been able to achieve tier 3. Ma'Alaketh - All their ships have at the minimum of a tier 2 force field, all the way to tier 5.