约在50年前，一艘寻星者的探索船越过了九头蛇星云（Hydra Nebula），进入了未曾探索的无垠深空（the Vast）。甫一抵达，寻星者就传回了消息，声称发现了一个星系，其上的居民不单单只有陌生的异星人，还包括人类——然而其社会结构明显并非源自协约世界，同时还有出现了许多设计前所未见的大型星舰的报告。在最后传回的通信里，探索船尝试与对象建立沟通——此后就彻底渺无音讯。
这是协约世界第一次与阿兹兰特星际帝国的接触，后者是由多个种族，世界，以及星系统合而成的庞大联盟，其由先于Gap数千年前离开格拉里昂的人类所统御。阿兹兰特星际帝国意图把全部宜居行星都纳入自己的版图，而且会为了帝国的利益剥削他国的知识，劳力和资源。其主要驱动理念宣称人类——尤其是纯血的阿兹兰特人——是最为完美的种族，而统治其他劣等种族乃至整个银河就是其天命所在。星际帝国的太空舰队据信能匹敌整个协约世界以及Veskarium的联合海军，其不朽宝石远征军团（legions of gem-augmented aeon troopers）冷酷地四处征伐，开疆辟土，并无情地镇压所有异见和分歧。
剧透 - 原文:
AZLANTI STAR EMPIRE
Expansionist Stellar Imperium
Almost 50 years ago, a Starfinder scout ship ventured beyond the Hydra Nebula, deep into the unexplored reaches of the Vast. Upon arrival, the Starfinders announced the discovery of a star system with planets inhabited not just by unfamiliar aliens, but also by humans—a society apparently not of Pact Worlds origin. It also reported the existence of multiple large starships of unknown design, and the scout’s intention to establish communication. The Starfinder ship made no further transmissions.
This was the Pact Worlds’ first contact with the Azlanti Star Empire, a vast union of diverse races, worlds, and star systems under the dominion of humans who left Golarion millennia before the Gap. The Azlanti Star Empire seeks to bring all inhabited worlds under its hegemony, exploiting their knowledge, labor, and resources for the good of the empire. Its driving philosophy asserts that humans— specifically pure-blooded Azlanti—are the most perfect species and that their destiny is to conquer the galaxy and rule over all lesser species. The Star Empire’s fleet of starships is believed to rival the navies of the Pact Worlds and Veskarium combined, and its legions of gem- augmented aeon troopers ruthlessly conquer new territories and quell dissent.
Since that meeting, encounters between the Pact Worlds and the Star Empire have been few, but always hostile. No vessel reporting direct contact with Star Empire forces has survived the encounter, at least in officially recorded sources, and so far only the barest outlines of their society have been gleaned by spying on transmissions. Two diplomatic delegations sent by the Pact Worlds government were firmly rebuffed: the first vanished without a trace, its members assumed to have been captured or killed; the second destroyed outright as soon as it came out of the Drift in Azlanti territory. The Veskarium colony world of Najin-Korozayas, established only a decade before first contact with the Star Empire, was obliterated in an Azlanti attack soon after, its entire populace slaughtered or enslaved and its resources plundered. Since then, both the Pact Worlds and the Veskarium have kept their distance from systems believed to be in Azlanti territory, forbidding explorers or colonists from entering, and the Stewards keep a close eye on the region, lest the Azlanti decide to move in force toward the Pact Worlds.