- "The 204th was never known for its mercy...'Shadow Wing', your people called it. Quite a name."
- ―Caern Adan, to Yrica Quell on the 204th Imperial Fighter Wing
The 204th Imperial Fighter Wing, also known as Shadow Wing, was a fighter wing in the Galactic Empire's navy. It was formed at least twenty years before the hunt for Shadow Wing and was one of the Empire's earliest volunteer wings. Eventually, it became one of the Empire's best fighter wings. Its primary focus was putting down rebel insurgency like the Rebel Alliance. Shadow Wing earned its name after the Orinda Massacre and carried out bombardments on Mennar-Daye and Mek'tradi. After the Battle of Hoth in 3 ABY, Squadron Five of Shadow Wing fought a new independent faction led by the Imperial Admiral Gratloe and escaped with Gratloe's Imperial-class Star Destroyer, the Celerity.
After the death of the Galactic Emperor, Shadow Wing assisted in Operation: Cinder, where it carried out a massacre on Nacronis, prompting the defection of one of its officers, Yrica Quell, to the Empire's enemy, the New Republic, the new form of the Rebel Alliance. Shadow Wing eventually took control of Pandem Nai and its tibanna gas mining station Orbital One.
In order to maintain the secrecy of their new base of operations, the fighter wing's forces destroyed multiple communications stations around the sector. Two TIE/ln space superiority starfighter squadrons of the 204th, aboard the Quasar Fire-class cruiser carriers Aerie, attacked the Republic's EF76 Nebulon-B escort frigate Hellion's Dare above Jiruus and later in the Oridol Cluster, where they were able to destroy it. However, they were attacked at Pandem Nai by the Republic's Alphabet Squadron, which led to the destruction of Orbital One and the death of Shadow Wing's leader, Colonel Shakara Nuress.
The 204th Imperial Fighter Wing was a fighter wing in the Imperial Military of the Galactic Empire that was formed at least twenty years before the hunt for Shadow Wing. Considered to be special forces, its primary focus was putting down rebel insurgency. It was organized as a mobile unit, based on a carrier ship or Imperial Star Destroyer. It was composed of six squadrons of TIE/LN starfighters and detachments of TIE/sa bombers and TIE/IN interceptors that were provided on a per-mission basis. During the Imperial Era, the 204th served in the Empire's Corporate Sector campaign to drive out remnants of the Confederacy of Independent Systems and served as a peacekeeping and security force during operations on Umbara and Salient. After their operations in the Corporate Sector, the 204th was reassigned to anti-piracy operations in the Mid Rim. As a part of their reassignment, new leadership changes occurred, installing Colonel Shakara Nuress as the unit commander, and Major Soran Keize. Eventually, the 204th participated in the Orinda Massacre, and as such, was nicknamed "Shadow Wing." Shadow Wing also carried out the bombardment of Mennar-Daye and later the bombardment of Mek'tradi, where they massacred many to draw out a rebel cell. Shadow Wing was formally under the command of Grand General Kenner Loring, who did not appreciate their full potential.
Changes in command
- "We lost most of Squadron Five in the Lyjdaa system mess. I'm currently rebuilding it from scratch. […] I've recommended that you be the new squadron leader."
- ―Soran Keize discusses the changes with Squadron Five to Teso Broosh
During an incident in the Lyjdaa system, most of Shadow Wing's Squadron Five were lost. Major Soran Keize was in charge of rebuilding it from scratch and decided to recommend Second Lieutenant Commander Teso Broosh to be the new Squadron Leader. Broosh did not want this position, feeling he was not born to be a leader. Nevertheless Keize convinced him that he was the kind of leader he wanted in charge of Squadron Five.
After the Battle of Hoth, which occurred in 3 ABY, Colonel Shakara Nuress, nicknamed "Grandmother," was in command of the 204th. Shadow Wing was involved in a battle against the Rebel Alliance, where Lieutenant Yrica Quell rescued Flight Officer Zin Graw from an A-wing starfighter. Several days later, Squadron Five participated in obliterating a rebel cell. After successful destroying all of the rebel forces, they returned to the Shadow Wing's Imperial-class Star Destroyer Pursuer, where Nuress had their next assignment. She tasked the squadron with a mission to the Kudo system to accompany a maintenance crew to the Star Destroyer Celerity, which had reported hyperdrive issues and was therefore a tempting target for rebel forces.
Mission to the Kudo System
- "The focus of Shadow Wing has been primarily putting down rebel insurgency. Escort duty seems like a rather sudden shift."
- ―Second Lieutenant Commander Broosh, to Colonel Nuress
Squadron Five traveled to the Kudo System aboard the Quasar Fire-class cruiser carrier Summit, a vessel which had been assigned by the Empire to deliver a maintenance crew to the Celerity. The captain of the Summit feared for the safety of the Star Destroyer and predicted that the strength of Squadron Five was not enough to combat any threat that may have compromised the capital ship. Upon arrival in the system, Squadron Five deployed and flew towards the Celerity. The squadron was surprised to see the Star Destroyer disable the Summit and deploy TIE fighters against Squadron Five.
As Squadron Five engaged the hostile TIE fighters, the Celerity ordered for the Summit to surrender or face destruction. However, the captain of the Summit decided to attempt an escape and the carrier was subsequently destroyed in the process by the Celerity. Commander Broosh contacted the Star Destroyer and announced Squadron Five's surrender, much to the disgust of the other members. They flew down to the planet Kudo where stormtroopers awaited to arrest them at the mining facility. Admiral Gratloe, the man in charge of the Imperial forces in the Kudo System, then explained to Squadron Five that they were now an independent faction and offered them a place within it. Being given time to consider the offer, the members were detained.
Nevertheless, the five members of Squadron Five were able to escape imprisonment and convince stormtroopers to join them in overthrowing Gratloe. After returning to their TIE interceptors, Squadron Five flew back up to the Celerity, where more Imperial forces had turned on Gratloe's faction, kick-starting a mutiny. However, Gratloe had planned to sell the Celerity to the Rebel Alliance, and soon enough, Alliance forces arrived. Lieutenant Lyttan Dree of Squadron Five was among the first casualties and the rest of Squadron Five flew for the Celerity losing Flight Officer Graw along the way. After arriving on the Star Destroyer, they were able to escape the system aboard it.
The new target
- "The strike on the mobile base is one element of a multipronged attack. If all goes as planned, the enemies of the Empire will have mere days left."
- ―Shakara Nuress, to the remaining members of Squadron Five
For the latest war effort, the Imperial Navy commandeered a class from Carida Academy whether they were ready or not. Due to its recent two losses, Shadow Wing decided to request for the two top ranked cadets from the class to fill the two new vacancies in Squadron Five. The two cadets, Bansu Ro and Rac Syrmo, were informed of the transfer by their flight instructor, Yurib Nakan.
Meanwhile the Imperial Security Bureau had unscrambled communications between Graw and Rebel forces while Squadron Five was in the Kudo System, revealing that she had been planning to defect. The ISB were also able to locate the mobile base where Imperials had been defecting to the Rebel Alliance thanks to Graw's communications. When Nuress briefed the three surviving members of Squadron Five on the ISB's findings, they struggled to believe that Graw could have been a traitor, especially Flight Officer Kahi, who had been in a relationship with her. The three were also briefed about attacking the recently discovered mobile base, as well as picking up their two new members, Ro and Syrmo, that they were receiving on the way. With the other squadrons of Shadow Wing committed elsewhere, Squadron Five would only be accompanying its bombers on an attack run on the mobile base.
On their way to the Rebel target, Squadron Five picked up their two new members from Ryleel Base. Broosh was dissatisfied to see that Ro and Syrmo were cadets. He later briefed Squadron Five on their attack, informing the other four that the ISB had been using Graw's datapad to act as her and keep their element of surprise on the rebels. When Kahi asked if the Empire was taking prisoners in this attack, Broosh told him that there would not be any rebels to track down after.
Responding to the Battle of Yavin
By the time the Death Star was destroyed, Nuress and Keize had earned Shadow Wing some prestige and had the squadron permanently assigned to the Star Destroyer Pursuer. After the Battle of Yavin, the squadron was assigned to carry out anti-rebel operations. The squadron participated in the Battle of Grumwall, which resulted in a massacre of rebel forces and a victory for the Empire.
- "The strategic objective is the elimination of all enemy presence on Nacronis, up to and including resources that could be subverted by the enemy."
- ―Soran Keize, on the objective of Operation Cinder on Nacronis
Shadow Wing later responded to an attack on the Trenchenovu shipyards by a rebel squadron of BTL Y-wing starfighters. Ambushing the Y-wings, Shadow Wing proceeded to destroy them one by one. The rebel squadrons leader, Nath Tensent, and his second-in-command, Reeka, made it past the 204th, before Reeka was killed as well. Tensent, however, escaped with his life.
Six months later, in 4 ABY, the Empire took a crippling blow when the Galactic Emperor, Sheev Palpatine, was killed in the Battle of Endor. In the aftermath of this, a contingency plan was activated, resulting in the initiation of Operation: Cinder through the deployment of messenger droids which carried the Palpatine's final commands.
Shadow Wing took part in Operation Cinder, conducting an attack on the stormy marshland planet Nacronis. In their initial attack, Captain Nosteen and his squadron escorted TIE/sa bombers while Major Soran Keize and his squadron intercepted rebel defenders. Nosteen's squadron was met by resistance while escorting the bombers. One pilot, named Tonas, positioned his TIE between a bomber and an X-wing to defend the former but was killed in the act. Lieutenant Quell destroyed the X-wing and an undetected surface-to-air missile killed Barath. The bombers were able to drop a payload of vortex detonators, which increased the fury of the siltstorm on Nacronis. The TIEs were then buffeted by the gales and Nosteen was hit by a lightning bolt, killing him and leaving Quell in charge of the remaining pilots.
The storms created by Shadow Wing from their bombing runs merged and devastated Nacronis. While the bombers returned to the Pursuer, Quell watched the work of the storm from above and even landed on the surface after the heavy storms ended. Feeling guilty for what Shadow Wing had done, she decided to defect. Major Keize, who landed nearby, felt sympathy for her and told her to defect to the Rebel Alliance.
Attack on the Hellion's Dare
More than a month after the Battle of Endor, the Rebel Alliance had transitioned into the New Republic. Two of the Shadow Wing squadrons embarked the Aerie on a campaign to destroy the Republic EF76 Nebulon-B escort frigate Hellion's Dare. Led by Lieutenant Preartes, they attacked the frigate above Jiruus, and engaged Riot Squadron and Hound Squadron. Although the Republic forces were able to escape into hyperspace, Shadow Wing was able to find them again in the Oridol Cluster, where they led a series of attacks on the Republic, managing to destroy the starship and all but two Republic starfighters, flown by Chass na Chadic and Wyl Lark.
Assault over Pandem Nai
The 204th was on Tibanna Gas mining station Orbital One on Pandem Nai when Alphabet Squadron attacked the station. Debris blocked the launch bay, therefore cutting off reinforcements. The battle caused the death of Colonel Shakara Nuress. The 204th fled the planet after the orbital station was destroyed.
- "Where shadows fall, all things die."
- ―Shadow Wing slogan
Under the direct command of Colonel Shakara Nuress and former leadership of Grand General Kenner Loring, Shadow Wing was considered to be special forces and was headquartered on the Pursuer, which was helmed by a captain. The 204th utilized at least four Quasar Fire-class cruiser-carriers, including the Summit, under the command of another captain, and the Aerie. As a fighter wing, it had an arsenal of TIE/ln space superiority starfighters, TIE/IN interceptors, and at least one Lambda-class T-4a shuttle.
The 204th was composed of six squadrons, one of which was Squadron Five, which was led by Second Lieutenant Commander Teso Broosh, and another squadron being Squadron Four. Yrica Quell's squadron was led by Captain Nosteen, who had appointed Quell his second-in-command upon her transfer fourteen weeks prior to Operation Cinder.
- TIE Fighter 1 (First appearance)
- TIE Fighter 2
- TIE Fighter 3
- TIE Fighter 4
- TIE Fighter 5
- Alphabet Squadron
- Alphabet Squadron audiobook
- Star Wars: Squadrons (Mentioned only)
- Shadow Fall
- Shadow Fall audiobook
- Victory's Price
- Victory's Price audiobook
Notes and references
- Alphabet Squadron
- TIE Fighter 1
- Shadow Fall
- Victory's Price
- Victory's Price establishes that the 204th Imperial Fighter Wing is defeated at the Battle of Jakku, which Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates to 5 ABY.
- TIE Fighter 3
- Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
- TIE Fighter 2
- TIE Fighter 4
- Aftermath: Empire's End
- Star Wars Battlefront II