- Skywalker: "Activate those walkers, Admiral."
- Yularen: "You are not thinking of using those to transport the clones to that frigate."
- Tano: "Well, they are pressurized…"
- Rex: "And they're equipped with magnetic feet. Mm. Good call."
- Tano: "Master, you're a genius."
- Yularen: "Those walkers are designed for terrain, not space!"
- Skywalker: "Rex, load 'em up."
- ―Anakin Skywalker, Ahsoka Tano, Wullf Yularen, and Captain Rex debate the use of AT-TE walkers aboard the Resolute[src]
The All Terrain Tactical Enforcer (AT-TE), nicknamed "six legs" by the Separatist Droid Army, was a multipurpose military ground walker and tank used by the Galactic Republic during the Clone Wars. It had six legs, six laser cannon turrets along the body and a heavy projectile mass-driver cannon on the top of the walker. It was one of the main ground vehicles for the Grand Army of the Republic throughout the Clone Wars.
The All Terrain Tactical Enforcer was a low-built vehicle that featured six articulated legs for propulsion. Its body consisted of two armored halves that were connected by a flexible concertina section (also housing the walker's power generators), which increased the walker's mobility on the field; it was essentially a mechanical version of the arctic horny whelmer, a hardy animal native to Rothana. Because its legs were low to the ground, the walker had a relatively low top speed, but it also enjoyed greater stability. As its name suggested, the AT-TE was suitable for traversing all types of planetary surfaces, as it's footpads were equipped with terrain sensors and tractor-field generators. Not only was it able to climb sheer surfaces, it could also scale certain metal surfaces thanks to its ability to magnetize its feet. Furthermore, the walker was capable of surviving in the vacuum of realspace as it was able to be pressurized.
The AT-TE's most powerful weapon was a single mass-driver cannon located on the vehicle's dorsal surface, which gave the walker the purpose as a mobile artillery vehicle as well as a tank. In addition to bombarding fixed positions, the mass driver could be used to shoot down slow-moving aircraft as well as intercept incoming rocket fire. Four smaller ball-turret laser cannons were mounted at the front, and two others at the rear, to defend the AT-TE from infantry. The hexapod's armor could easily deflect small arms fire, and it's conductive material spread the heat from weapons fire to minimize penetration. The AT-TE was also well-shielded against electromagnetic pulse and ion weaponry. However the armor could be pierced by tanksmasher rockets, which could result in the destruction of the vehicle's complex propulsion mechanisms.
The walker's crew consisting of a pilot and a spotter seated in a forward compartment; four gunners/support crew, two each seated in the forward and rear hull sections; and a turret gunner who sat exposed atop the walker to operate the mass-driver cannon. The spotter used a rangefinder periscope to select targets and coordinate the fire of the gunners, who operated their weapons via targeting controls. The standard version of the AT-TE could seat two squads or 20 clone troopers split between the forward and rear sections. Inertial compensators beneath their seats helped keep the troopers in place with seat restraints as backup in case of system failure. Some variants also carried smaller All Terrain Reconnaissance Transports in their rear hold. The crew and passengers were assisted by an onboard IM-6 medic droid, who attended to any injured troopers.
Built by Rothana Heavy Engineering, the All Terrain Tactical Enforcer became the principal battle tank of the Grand Army of the Galactic Republic during the Clone Wars. The B1-series battle droids of the Separatist Droid Army took to calling the AT-TEs "six legs."
It was used in many large scale open battles and was also used in operations smaller in scale, such as charging up a mountain face during the Battle of Teth to rescue Rotta the Huttlet. During the Battle of Devaron, Jedi General Anakin Skywalker, knowing that the walkers were pressurized and had magnetized feet, deployed two AT-TEs, ATAT300 and 773, onto bounty hunter Cad Bane's Munificent-class star frigate while it was in the vacuum of space. This strategy was condemned by Admiral Wullf Yularen when Skywalker proposed it, but Jedi Commander Ahsoka Tano and Clone Captain CT-7567 "Rex" understood his logic and commended his thinking. Ultimately, it was successful, though Skywalker and his team were unable to retrieve the Jedi holocron they were sent to retrieve.
AT-TEs continued to be used throughout the war. During the Conquest of Kaller, at least one AT-TE of General Depa Billaba's clone force fought against a battalion of battle droids, but the walker was taken out by fire from Armored Assault Tank Mk Is. A blast from an AT-TE was Clone Commander Cody's chosen method in executing Jedi General Obi-Wan Kenobi when he received Order 66, since it allowed him to fire on Kenobi in a surprise attack, as Kenobi was not yet aware of the clones' betrayal. However, the blast only succeeded in knocking Kenobi into water, and he later escaped to safety.
Age of the Empire
AT-TEs were used on the Separatist capital of Raxus Secundus by Captain Bragg to disperse protestors after the remaining senator of the Parliament, Avi Singh, refused to let the Empire keep the supposed peace it worked hard to achieve after the deaths of the Separatist Council. One AT-TE was later hijacked by Clone Force 99 to rescue Singh and his droid GS-8. Several more AT-TEs were destroyed by the squad as they fled the city.
Fifteen years after the end of the Clone Wars, Captain Rex, along with Commanders Wolffe and Gregor, were living in a modified AT-TE on Seelos. They, along with the Lothal Rebels, later used the tank to evade Imperial forces, which consisted of three All Terrain Armored Transport walkers. The tank's mass driver cannon was able to destroy one AT-AT in the sandstorm before Rex ordered a direct assault on the other two while the Rebels escaped. The mass-driver cannon was not strong enough to penetrate the AT-AT armor, with the exception of the walkers' 'necks'.
The AT-TE was able to sustain multiple shots from both AT-ATs before Wolffe rammed it into one of the walkers. The cannon was temporarily knocked out, but Gregor was able to restore power when the rebels returned and hijacked one of the AT-ATs, giving Rex the opening to shoot the last walker in the neck. The AT-TE was destroyed when the AT-AT collapsed on it.
Galactic Civil War
Several AT-TEs were later modified by Rebel Alliance mechanics in order to be used as an attack vehicle during the Galactic Civil War. A number were modified with thicker armor and more powerful armament, becoming known as Elite AT-TEs.
Notes and references
- Ultimate Star Wars
- Rise of the Separatists
- Star Wars Complete Vehicles, New Edition
- Star Wars Encyclopedia of Starfighters and Other Vehicles
- Star Wars: Rogue One: AT-ACT Deluxe Book and 3D Wood Model
- Star Wars: Galactic Defense
- Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones
- Star Wars: Commander
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Cargo of Doom"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Deserter"
- Star Wars Battlefront II
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Supply Lines"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Landing at Point Rain"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Zillo Beast"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars film
- Star Wars: The Bad Batch – "Aftermath"
- Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith
- Star Wars Rebels – "The Lost Commanders"
- Star Wars Rebels – "Relics of the Old Republic"
- "Blade Squadron: Kuat"—Star Wars Insider 168