I have noticed before that the AI players seem to be able to design and build a lot of impossible Tiny warships.
Here is a good example Game is Large 16 Races at Genius level and it is April 2311, i.e. 4 1/4th game years. The Arceans have a lot of 2 designs when I check them out via the Trade Screen.
They have 61 Asteroid Miners (that can really mine Asteroids) that are Guardian Tiny interceptors with 4/4/4 weapons and 0/0/0 defenses and 13 hit points and 13 Speed.
They also have 17 Patrol Tiny warships that are either 4/8/4 or 3/7/3 for weapons and 0/0/0 for defenses with 13 Hit Points and 13 Speed.
How can they be doing things like this? It would take a LOT of investigations of Precursor anomalies with just the right results for me to do things like this. Luckily they do not have Small and Medium Hulls and the ability to use Subspace Streams.
It was fairly common for me earlier in many games to see several Races in each Game with MANY (scores of them) Tiny warships with 1/2/1 weapons and1/1/1 defenses.
added: see following messages
I think that what I am seeing is the affects of military Star Bases on the ships of those AI Alien Players. i.e. most of those ships are either Asteroid Miners or Tiny ships with ONE small (Laser) weapon, i.e. a 0/1/0 for weapons and 0/0/0 for defenses Tiny size ship, plus Military Bases adding to them, plus possibly any Precursor affects from exploring/surveying anomalies during the course of the game, etc.