In a distant part of the universe, a civilization of humans live on planets known as the Twelve Colonies. In the past, the Colonies have been at war with a cybernetic race known as the Cylons. With the help (knowing or unknowing) of a human named Baltar, the Cylons launch a sudden sneak attack on the Colonies, laying waste to the planets and devastating their populations. A few thousand of the human survivors flee into space aboard any spacecraft they can reach. Of all the Colonial Fleet, the Battlestar Galactica appears to be the only military ship that survived the attack. Under the leadership of famed military leader Commander Adama, the Battlestar Galactica and its crew take up the task of leading the small fugitive fleet of survivors into space in search of a fabled refuge known as Earth.