When the Unification War began the Independents only had a few ships. Some of these craft were models also used by the Alliance military such as the Alliance Short Range Enforcement Vessel and the Alliance Patrol Boat.
Early in the war the Independent forces were able to cheaply obtain a number of Military variant series 3 Firefly class transports that served as fast and long ranged gunboats. These vessels were often armed with plasma packet cannons. Combined with their speed these weapons allowed the converted transports to close with, and severely damage or destroy Alliance capital ships before the Alliance forces could muster a response and these vessels became the backbone of the Independent space forces. The Independents also used also used Komodo Class vessels in a variety of roles including serving as tenders to groups of the Firefly gunboats. Arrowhead-class Couriers were also popular among the Independents because much like the Fireflys they could easily be converted into combat vessels.
In response to the threat posed by the Firefly gunboats the Alliance Navy developed the AFAS which was first deployed at the Battle of Sturges. The new craft's capabilities combined with Wolfpack tactics devastated the Firefly Gunboats of the Independent fleet thus turning the tides of the space battlefields of the Unification War firmly in favor of the Alliance.