A ship is any space-faring vehicle. The term ship, historically, referred mainly to large water-based vessels on Earth. However, with the advent of space travel, the term is used more often on the vessels that allowed for such an endeavor. This article will focus on such vehicles, which are sometimes colloquially called space-ships or starships.
The 20th Century saw humans develop craft that could travel far beyond the Earth's horizon and reach outer space. However, perhaps the most significant development in this area of travel would be the use of subspace for interstellar travel. Star systems once thought unreachable were now easily accessible, and Terrans, Vasudans, and the Ancients managed to assimilate multiple planets and moons, vastly expanding their respective societies. Behind such a phenomenon was the development of highly advanced spacecraft which were equipped with subspace drives, and were the means by which such travel could be possible.
Space-faring ships are classified into many different types. The largest distinction would be a ship's civilian or military purpose (though some ships may cross-over in this function, such as the GTSC Faustus, a civilian research vessel which is lightly armed in times of war). A large ship whose purpose is military combat is called a warship, while smaller vessels that serve the same purpose are called fighters and bombers.
Warships are generally classified into three main categories; cruiser, corvette, and destroyer, in order of increasing size and power. More uncommon classifications include frigate, a term used to designate a large corvette (or small destroyer). Superdestroyer colloquially refers to destroyers which are larger and more powerful than is common, such as the SD Lucifer and GTD Hades; Juggernaut was used to classify the Shivan SJ Sathanas, whose size and power far surpassed those of any vessel the Terrans and Vasudans have ever encountered in their history. Additionally, only one warship could be considered beyond any form of classification; the GTVA Colossus, a warship whose scope is vast enough to render it beyond the means of mass-production, negating its need for categorization. Later, warships were equipped with beam weapons, a state-of-the-art development once used by the SD Lucifer and replicated by the Terrans and Vasudans. However, beam-equipped Shivan warships remain far deadlier, with more efficient beam weapons than their Terran and Vasudan counterparts.
Fighters and bombers are much smaller military spacecraft with far greater mobility than warships. While bombers are used to attack larger ships, fighters are there to defend such ships against bombers, dogfight other fighters, or weaken a warship's turrets and subsystems. It is worth noting that while the Shivans were at a huge advantage in the Great War due to having shielding systems, they were soon outmatched by Terran and Vasudan fighters as soon as the latter were equipped with shields of their own, along with generally better weaponry.
Civilian ships are vessels not generally used in wartime, though they may be equipped with light weaponry if needed during times of conflict. Prominent uses of such ships would be as transports', freighters, medical ships, "AWACS ships, escape pods, and science ships.