Vehicles are not story. That is quite ridiculous. At BEST they are characters.
Ships, their characteristics, the places they go to, the conflicts they engage in, are all one actually needs.
Relatively-small lifeforms, with their puny issues, are fit only for building the ships (until the latter can replicate themselves). After this, they may provide enemy vessels with convenient target practice: a direct score equals a certain number of spaced and/or charred remains.
What else you
like in a story is, of course, your