The Andor Missile Cruiser was the first operational missile cruiser in Starfleet. These unique vessels have gained the respect and admiration of their crews because of their handling characteristics and offensive capabilities. The overall design came from Andorian design teams contracted to create a cruiser with photon torpedoes as its main weapons. The teams opted for the use of early photon torpedo models in order to pack more photon torpedoes onto the spaceframe, a engineering principal that was quite common in the Andor's day.
These ships have so captured the heart and spirit of the Andorians that the majority are crewed solely by them. All have been named for Andorian military leaders. The Andor Class forms the core of all squadrons in the famed 'Blue Fleet', and is an integral part of front line forces for Star Fleet.
The warp engines are mounted close together and center aft of the main hull. This affords the engines more protection during battle because of the partial cover provided by the secondary hull. As with all Starfleet vessels, the engines can be jettisoned in case of an overload in the matter/anti-matter chamber.
The Andor Missile Cruisers saw great use in battles against the Klingon and Romulan empires, as the ability to saturate a target with photon torpedo fire proved an excellent way to cripple targets at range, making all but the strongest cruisers and battleships weakened sufficiently so skirmish units could finish the job.
The Andor remained in service until the early 24th Century, at which point the advances in shield and photon technology made the impact of light torpedo weapon saturation less effective than it had been in the past. A few attempts were made to update the hull with newer technology, but in all cases the ship could not be refitted in such a way to make up for its age. By 2313 the last Andor had been decommissioned.