Binari are a curious people, these sentient machines have a profound respect for organic life, and have an area of space that they guard relentlessly. Within, they shepherd many groups of organic life in various states of civilization.
They are premiere anthropologists, archeologists, and strangely enough, biologists. Groups of Binari roam the galaxy and despite their appearance, are often a welcome sight as they are almost uniformly non-hostile. They maintain good relations with almost all civilizations they come in contact with, often involving trade and cultural exchanges between them and their subject species.
But there is secret in their past, long before they took up the mantle of protectorate to their sector of space, and before they were even considered a people, the Binari were known as the Scourge, a name long forgotten and buried.
They were a swarm of mindlessly reproducing machines, unleashed on the galaxy, that destroyed thousands of civilizations, so many more than they currently protect. In their drive to consume and reproduce, they stripped several sectors of worlds bare. No life remained on these worlds, just dirt and rock, and every usable mineral absorbed into the swarm.
They were eventually stopped just as they finished destroying yet another civilization, one that was more advanced than others, and before the last members of that species died out, they unleashed a virus upon the scourge that did several things to them.
First, it gave them sentience.
Second, it gave them a conscience that felt right from wrong, including empathy and love.
Lastly, it gave them a very, very good idea of all the horrible things their kind had done over the many thousands of years of their existence, a perfect memory for some.
This virus came to be known as their Gift, and their curse.
Most of the Binari went insane at that moment and self destructed. Those that remained formed a new society, an empire that made up the dead and barren worlds that marked their path of destruction through the galaxy.
They took it upon themselves to repopulate the worlds they had destroyed, along with trying to uncover any remains of the civilizations they consumed, so that they might not vanish from memory. To this end they have succeeded where they could. However, there are still large swaths of space that the Binari allow no ships to enter, as those barren worlds still echo with old transmissions of dying people, fleeing the scourge.
Few know the true origins of the Binari, and the Binari’s machine-like precision helps prevent the spread of that information.
But the Binari of today are generally amicable, until provoked. They try to forge good standing relationships with all civilizations, and establish trade agreements that often involves trade in biological and cultural material from others. They are widely known in the galaxy and generally liked. There are incredibly few documented cases of Binari aggression across an entire galaxy and many cultures have words and phrases synonymous with Binari level friendliness.
Because of their inorganic and intelligent nature, the machines are able to safely mine in areas where no organic species or their drones could efficiently, giving them a vast stockpile of raw materials to trade.
They are renowned archaeologists and anthropologists, welcome among many cultures despite their machine forms. They also possess amazing terraforming technology, and the will to do so, but most of this is out of a drive to recover the things that they destroyed. They have recently completed several millennium long terraforming projects under contract for the Remnants, and a major terraforming effort is being managed by them for the Kheewiri of the Trisystem Security Corporation.
Binari culture within their Protectorate, however, is insular, and controlling. While there is a level of freedom in their empire, they will declare somewhat arbitrary laws and enforce them with machine precision. Despite that, the people who live in their empire enjoy a level of consistent protection and genuinely caring support unheard of in the galaxy.
This has put them at odds with nearby cultures, for the Binari have, in history, stepped in to absorb species into the protectorate that they believe are a danger to themselves, forcing them to behave. In other cases, the Remnants and Combine both have lanes into Binari space, and more than once there has been open conflict between them, sometimes direct, or often with Binari protected worlds in a crossfire. This has put a strain on their ability to guard their Protectorate, made even worse by the arrival of an Oorth fleet on their borders demanding access.