Why Stormtroopers Had The Emperor’s Most Unique TIE Fighters
3 mins read

Why Stormtroopers Had The Emperor’s Most Unique TIE Fighters


  • The Stormtrooper Corps included elite branches with unique TIE Fighter variants for strategic advantage against the Rebel Alliance.
  • Storm Commandos, expert pilots within the Corps, used TIE Hunters with advanced features to counter rebellion tactics effectively.
  • The Emperor’s Royal Guards, the top warriors in the Corps, had their own exclusive TIE variant for faster, maneuverable escort missions.



The iconic stormtroopers of the Star Wars original trilogy have some of the most of the most unique TIE Fighter variants in the franchise. The Stormtrooper Corps is an elite division of the Imperial Army in the modern Star Wars canon, but in the Legends continuity, they are a separate branch of the Imperial Military, serving as a smaller and more elite fighting force that works alongside the more common Imperial Army and Navy. While the Stormtrooper Corps is not known for its vehicles, the branch, fascinatingly, includes two classes of TIE starfighters.

Following Palpatine’s sinister autocratic coup, the Republic’s Judicial Forces and various Planetary Defense Forces were combined and redesignated the Imperial Army. The smaller and more elite Grand Army of the Republic became the Stormtrooper Corps, quickly replacing the clone troopers with recruited stormtroopers in the early years of the Empire. While not as formidable as their clone predecessors, Imperial stormtroopers were deadly and well-trained minions of the Empire with fanatical devotion to Emperor Palpatine and unique equipment, from their iconic armored suit (reverse-engineered from clone trooper armor) to two unique TIE Fighter variants reserved for the most elite stormtroopers.


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The Most Elite Stormtroopers Had Their Own TIE Fighter Variants

Established as a lethal check against the Rebel Alliance’s effective tactics, the elite Stormtrooper Corps established the Storm Commandos, an even deadlier group within the Corps, to use similarly aggressive guerrilla strategies against them. Storm Commandos’ specialized training rendered them expert pilots, and they exclusively used the deadly TIE Hunter starfighters. TIE Hunters – like the Storm Commandos themselves – were designed to use the Rebellion’s own tactics against them, with the craft sporting X-wing-like s-foils and proton torpedoes, in addition to deflector shields, a hyperdrive, and ion cannons to disable enemy craft.

The Emperor’s Royal Guards – the most elite members of the Stormtrooper Corps and among the deadliest warriors within the Empire itself – also had their own exclusive TIE variant. The intimidating, red-painted, Royal Guard TIE Interceptors were faster and more maneuverable than the standard TIE Interceptors used by the Imperial Starfighter Corps and, like TIE Hunters, featured shielding and hyperdrives that were not found in standard TIE Fighters and Interceptors. The Royal Guard TIE Interceptors would escort Emperor Palpatine’s Lambda-class shuttle as it traveled the galaxy.

Why Did The Stormtrooper Corps Lack Vehicles?

The Stormtrooper Corps’ lack of vehicles is explained by their role within the Imperial Military. Stormtroopers served as the elite vanguard of invasions, clearing the way for the Army and Navy, as well as rooting out disloyal personnel within both branches. Aside from their TIE variants, the Stormtrooper Corps also had Imperial escort carriers (capital ships used by Storm Commandos) and Delta-class DX-9 stormtrooper transports (dropships for standard stormtroopers), as shown in other Star Wars Legends materials.

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