- "With all due respect, General, if someone comes to our home, they better be carrying a big blaster."
- ―CT-7567 "Rex," to Obi-Wan Kenobi
Kamino (pronounced /kə'minoʊ/) was an aquatic extragalactic planet located in a remote star system beyond the Outer Rim just outside the boundaries of the galaxy and straggled south of the Rishi Maze irregular dwarf satellite galaxy. It was inhabited by the Kaminoans — a race of tall, elegant beings with long necks who were regarded as a mysterious species that tended to keep to themselves. They were also known for their cloning technology, which was used to create a clone army for the Galactic Republic.
Largely isolated from the galaxy, its existence was erased from the Jedi records. Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi, who was investigating the attempt to assassinate Padmé Amidala, traced the bounty hunter Jango Fett to the planet, where he discovered the cloning program. With the outbreak of the Clone Wars, Kamino became a prime target for the Separatists and a vital asset for the Republic, resulting in at least two attempts to invade the watery world. During the early days of the Galactic Empire, with the cloning program halted, the Empire cleared out the cloning facilities on the planet and destroyed all major facilities on the planet, including the capital, Tipoca City.
- "Kamino. I'm not familiar with it. Is it in the Republic?"
"No, no. It's beyond the Outer Rim. I'd say about, uh, 12 parsecs… outside the Rishi Maze."
- ―Obi-Wan Kenobi and Dexter Jettster
Located seventy thousand light-years from the Core Worlds, Kamino was a remote and inhospitable extragalactic planet which was covered in oceans that held an abundance of life. The native Kaminoans lived on stilt-cities scattered across Kamino's watery surface. The majority of these cities were devoted to cloning projects, as the highly intelligent Kaminoans specialized in cloning for clients needing workers or private security forces, along with other one-off requests. Due to the remoteness of the planet and its extensive rainy season, only occasional representatives of clone purchasing authorities were undeterred from visiting the world.
Kamino often experienced heavy rain, and during some parts of the year was covered with heavy electrical storms. During this season, Kaminoans rode on aiwhas underwater and resurfaced once they were near their destination.
At some point the planet was not covered in water, and the Kaminoans built a large land-based civilization. However, the water level rose, forcing the Kaminoans to build their structures on stilts.
- "These, uh, Kaminoans keep to themselves. They're cloners. Damn good ones too."
- ―Dexter Jettster
The Kaminoans were generally isolationists, staying out of contact with the nearby galaxy. This behavior could be traced back to the great flood that changed their homeworld, as they decided it was less risky to adapt their genetic code and planet than to ask for aid from the Galactic Republic.
In approximately 33 BBY,[source?] Jedi Master Sifo-Dyas commissioned the Kaminoans to create a clone army for the Galactic Republic, in response to a Force vision that saw the galaxy descending into a galaxy-spanning conflict. However, the Sith secretly took over the project, after arranging Sifo-Dyas' death at the hands of the Pyke Syndicate. The Sith selected the human bounty hunter Jango Fett to serve as the genetic template of the clone army.
In 22 BBY, Kamino was governed by Prime Minister Lama Su. Working on a request from Viceroy Nute Gunray, Fett attempted to assassinate Naboo senator Padmé Amidala on the Republic's capital planet, Coruscant, during the Separatist Crisis. However, Fett's fellow bounty hunter tasked for the assassination attempt, Zam Wesell, failed to kill Amidala and was cornered by the Jedi Knight Obi-Wan Kenobi. Fett killed Wesell before she could reveal any information. Kenobi went on to investigate the assassination attempt, searching for clues from the Kamino saberdart used to kill Wesell. After receiving no answers from the Jedi Archives, Kenobi sought counsel with Dexter Jettster, a Besalisk chef and information broker who owned and operated Dex's Diner in CoCo Town on Coruscant.
Jettster informed his Jedi friend that the dart originated from Kamino, a planet located twelve parsecs outside of the Rishi Maze, a satellite galaxy in orbit of the main galaxy. Jettster explained that Kamino was home to highly competent cloners who mostly kept to themselves. Kamino had been removed from the records of the Jedi Archives, so Kenobi and Master Yoda had to locate the planet by other means. After finding a way to reach Kamino, Kenobi traveled to the planet, where he discovered the production of the clone army supposedly commissioned by the Jedi Order.
- "There's only one target of interest in this sector: Kamino. It's the closest thing we clones have to a home. Today we fight for more than the Republic. Today we fight for all our brothers back home."
Following the outbreak of the Clone Wars, Kamino was one of the main operational areas of the Galactic Republic. It served as the main training grounds for clone cadets as well as the location for the clone army's creation. To protect the planet and the cloning facilities from a possible Separatist attack, the Republic established a blockade of ten Venator-class Star Destroyers, one Acclamator-class assault ship, and two Arquitens-class light cruisers.
At some point, a galactic explorer—who may have been the Ithorian artist Gammit Chond—elected to make the long journey needed to visit Kamino, wanting to visit Tipoca City and meet the cloners who had come to play a vital role in galactic history. In their journal, the explorer wrote that they were honored to visit the city. From the beginnings of the war, the Separatists plotted their assault on the clone homeworld. In 22 BBY, the cyborg General Grievous sent a strike team of commando droids to take out Rishi Station, a Republic outpost that could warn Kamino of an impending attack. The base was taken over by the droids, but as Grievous's fleet arrived in the system before attacking Kamino, clone trooper CT-782 "Hevy" sacrificed himself to alert Republic forces of the enemy fleet, causing the Separatists to retreat and call off their attack.
Later, a Separatist assault finally made its way to Kamino. Led by Asajj Ventress and General Grievous, a massive force hit Kamino in an attempt to end clone creation for the Republic. Jedi Generals Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi with the 501st Legion and the 212th Attack Battalion were sent to assist in the planet's defense alongside Jedi General Shaak Ti. The two-pronged assault saw Ventress lead Trident-class assault ships beneath the surface of the planet's oceans to sneak up on Tipoca City as the two fleets clashed above the watery planet. Many AQ-series battle droids invaded the cloning facilities, killing many clone troopers, including Clone ARC Commanders Colt and Havoc and the malformed clone 99. Ventress successfully stole the prime sample of the clone trooper DNA template, but she was attacked by Skywalker, who, with the assistance of a force of clones, reclaimed the DNA. Republic forces managed to defeat the Separatists and cloning continued on the planet.
Another battle of Kamino involved Jedi General Kit Fisto, who fought against Separatist droids deployed in the battle. Late in the war, the Sith's plan to destroy the Jedi using the clones troopers was almost revealed. During the Battle of Ringo Vinda, the clone trooper CT-5385, nicknamed Tup, executed the Jedi Master Tiplar during the confrontation due to a defect in his inhibitor chip. Wanting answers, it was decided that the clone would be sent to Kamino.
The Kaminoan leadership did everything possible to prevent the truth about the chips from being revealed, that they would guarantee the clones' obedience when the order to destroy the Jedi was given. Although Tup died during a procedure carried out without permission to remove the chip by his clone friend Fives and the medical android AZI-3, the threat to the Sith plan did not end while Fives continued to investigate. Fives found that all clones had chips and decided to remove his, and he and the two chips were sent to Coruscant for analysis. Fives was eventually killed on Coruscant and the truth about the chips was kept secret.
- "The Empire is not like the Republic. We have empowered them to our own detriment. I fear they will destroy us rather than allow this operation to continue."
- ―Lama Su, to Nala Se
After the establishment of the Galactic Empire, rumors spread throughout the Imperial ranks that the cloning facilities in Kamino were to be closed down, which concerned the clones. Shortly after its establishment, Imperial Governor and Admiral Wilhuff Tarkin arrived on Kamino to discuss the status of the new Imperial Army with Lama Su. Tarkin informed the Prime Minister that the Empire was reluctant to continuing using clones. He added that the Empire, the successor to the Republic, was no longer bound to contracts signed with the Kaminoans. Upon seeing a group of enhanced clones—Clone Force 99, also known as "the Bad Batch"—cause a disturbance in the mess hall, Tarkin requested they undergo a battle simulation before sending them on a mission to Onderon, claiming they would encounter Separatist insurgents.
On Onderon, the Bad Batch encountered civilians instead of rebels, and the clone commandos—with the exception of team sniper CT-9904 "Crosshair"—chose to disobey their orders. The Bad Batch discovered that Tarkin used a probe droid to observe their mission. Nevertheless, the Bad Batch decided to return to Kamino to rescue the young enhanced clone Omega, who earlier warned against returning to the planet. Upon arrival, they were captured, and Crosshair was taken away to a medical chamber. Learning that the commando's inhibitor chip had, unlike the other members of his squad, responded to Order 66, Tarkin increased its effectiveness to turn Crosshair to the Empire's side. Donning new Imperial gear, Crosshair and a force of shock troopers attempted to stall Omega and the Bad Batch from departing the hangar, only for Nala Se to secretly override the door controls. Evading Crosshair and the other Imperial forces on Kamino, the Bad Batch left for the Suolriep sector. Crosshair was then placed in charge of an elite squad of human, non-clone soldiers. The Bad Batch's old barracks in Tipoca City were then cleaned out and used by Crosshair's elite squad.
The Empire slowly dismantled the cloning program as the troops in the Imperial Army were gradually replaced by non-clone recruits. As the Empire began to cancel contracts, the Kaminoans grew wary of them and made arrangements to flee from the Empire, only to be foiled. The Empire had the Prime Minister arrested, with Chief Scientist Nala Se forced to cooperate with the Empire and disclose her scientific knowledge.
Withdrawal of the Empire
Hunter, who was captured by the Empire while extracting a clone Gregor on the planet Daro, was brought back to Kamino by Crosshair. The rest of the Bad Batch returned to the planet to extract Hunter. Noticing the absence of troops and the facilities stripped down, the Bad Batch encountered Crosshair and his squad with Hunter in the training chamber. Crosshair offered the Bad Batch to join the Empire, declaring that they were superior to the "regs" and that they would aid the Empire in establishing order as its elite squad. Chaos ensued, as Crosshair fired on his squad-mates to make his point and Omega activated the battle droids. Vice Admiral Rampart, who oversaw the evacuation of all remaining clone troopers and essential personnel from Kamino, abandoned Crosshair and received the order from Tarkin to destroy Tipoca City. As the Bad Batch attempted to return to their shuttle, they were caught in the bombardment and fled back inside the falling city.
Like Tipoca City, all other Kaminoan facilities the Empire knew of were targeted and destroyed, causing their civilization to sink beneath the waves. Alerted to their success by a clone trooper, Rampart ordered his trio of Star Destroyers to reunite with his overall fleet, leaving the remains of Tipoca City to sink into the ocean, completing the Imperial withdrawal from Kamino. Meanwhile, through the actions of Omega and AZI-3, Crosshair was saved from drowning and reunited with his former squad, regrouping in their former barracks, which had ironically become one of the few rooms that was temporally safe to reside in. After the squad debates about Crosshair's recent actions, the group decided to make their way to Nala Se's secret laboratory, evading a Saberjowl along the way.
Aided by AZI-3, the squad made their way up to the ocean's surface by stowing themselves in the very growth jars they had been created in. When AZI-3 began to run out of power and sink into the depths of the sea, Omega risked her life to save her robotic friend, exiting her jar to swim after him. It was only because of Crosshair, who shot a grapple line from his sniper into the water, that she and AZI-3 were returned to the surface, even though the rest of the Bad Batch had initially assumed Crosshair was going to shoot Hunter. Upon reaching the Havoc Marauder, the clones looked out at the wreckage of their home before turning away to loading onto the starship. As the squad prepared to leave, Crosshair denied their offer to rejoin, intending to stay with the Empire. Omega reminded him that he was still their brother before Clone Force 99 departed, leaving Crosshair alone on Kamino to be picked up by incoming Imperial scouts. The sky of Kamino was clear when the Bad Batch left their homeworld.
Behind the scenes
- "Fighting a war tests a soldier's skills, defending his home tests a soldier's heart."
- ―Opening quote for "ARC Troopers"
Originally, George Lucas promised to explain the mystery behind the erasure of Kamino from the Jedi Archives in 2005's Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith. However, after refocusing the story on Anakin Skywalker, Lucas opted to sacrifice extraneous plot points related to Attack of the Clones, including Kamino's mystery.
- LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures – "Zander's Joyride" (Mentioned only)
- LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures – "Showdown on Hoth" (Mentioned only)
- LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures – "Return to the Wheel" (Mentioned only)
- LEGO Star Wars: Droid Tales – "Exit from Endor" (In flashback(s))
Notes and references
- Star Wars: Complete Locations
- Ultimate Star Wars
- Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones
- Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know
- Rise of the Separatists
- Star Wars Battlefront II
- Star Wars: The Bad Batch – "Return to Kamino"
- Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia
- Star Wars: The Bad Batch – "Kamino Lost"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Conspiracy"
- Star Wars: The Bad Batch – "Aftermath"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "ARC Troopers"
- Star Wars: Alien Archive
- "A Certain Point of View" – Star Wars Insider 206
- Ultimate Star Wars
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Lost One"
- Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates the events of Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones to 22 BBY.
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Rookies"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Clone Cadets"
- Star Wars: The Lightsaber Collection
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Unknown"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Fugitive"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Orders"
- Star Wars: The Bad Batch – "War-Mantle"
- Darth Vader (2017) 2
- Star Wars: The Bad Batch – "Replacements"
- Collapse of the Republic
- Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith DVD commentary