- "The Emperor had a private storehouse. It was where he kept all of his private mementos and souvenirs and odd bits of technology he thought might be useful someday. One of the artificial caverns held a complete cloning facility."
- ―Mara Jade
Mount Tantiss was a mountain on the planet of Wayland that housed one of Emperor Palpatine's secret storehouses. It was considered a forbidden place by both the Psadan and Myneyrsh inhabitants. It came to house Grand Admiral Thrawn's secret cloning program during the Thrawn campaign.
Imperial secret storehouse
- "A private rat's nest. Sounds like him."
- ―Han Solo
Mount Tantiss was originally the site of an Old Republic fort that was reactivated by Palpatine during the Clone Wars. The storehouse contained both objects and trinkets of unspeakable evil, as well as mementos from the conquests of the Empire. His most private treasures were hidden in a massive labyrinth designed by Garrbo V'Droz in the mountain's bottom chamber.
The mountain also held the twenty-thousand Spaarti cloning cylinders which were used by Grand Admiral Thrawn to create a crew of clones for his new fleet of Dreadnaughts, and the schematics for the cloaking devices that he would install on those very same ships and would make their way into much of the Imperial Fleet as time went by.
Destruction of the storehouses
The storehouse was destroyed at the end of the Thrawn campaign in 9 ABY by Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa Solo, Lando Calrissian, Talon Karrde, Chewbacca, and Han Solo after Luke and Mara Jade killed the clones Luuke Skywalker and Joruus C'baoth.
Ten years later, an edited version of the Caamas Document was found there by information broker Lak Jit. Leia Organa Solo managed to catch him with the assistance of Talon Karrde. She recovered the document but this didn't prevent the Caamas Document Crisis.
The uppermost level of the mountain contained the Throne Room Complex, which was always kept in a state of constant readiness by order of the Emperor Palpatine. The throne room had two turbolifts and a single emergency stairwell.
One lift was the Emperor's lift for quick access to the Royal Chambers complex, that was the personal residence of Palpatine when he was staying at Mount Tantiss. The complex took up a full three levels. The second turbolift, which was keyed to the Emperor's retinal scan, so only he could activate it, led to the Emergency Shuttle Hangar below the Royal Chambers, which was Palpatine's emergency escape route. This turbolift stopped at the throne room, but it also stopped at every other level of Mount Tantiss, including the crypts and "The Labyrinth". While it was readily visible at the throne room level, its presence was carefully hidden on all other levels, and did not even appear on any schematics of the facility.
The Emperor's Private Studies and Access corridors were located below, a three-level area that served as the residence of the Emperor's servants and advisors, as well as his private study and work area. These levels also provided the only link between the rest of Mount Tantiss and Palpatine's private upperlevels. A number of the Emperor's treasure vaults, known as the Upper Vaults, were scattered throughout the upperlevels. The vaults themselves appear to have been hewn directly into the rock of the mountain and were huge, capable of housing Palpatine's vast collection of trophies.
A main turbolift shaft connected the middle levels to the Upper Vaults and the Emperor's private levels, and maintenance droids had a number of service lifts that they could use to move around the mountain. There were a series of turbolifts that connected only the middle levels, such as the cloning chambers, and the lowerlevels, such as the military barracks.
The Emperor's collection of Spaarti cylinders was housed in the immense cavern known as the Cloning Chamber at the uppermost level of middle levels. A series of nearly thirty Technology Vaults were present below, they possessed the same level of security as the upper treasure vaults. A number of airshafts and service crawlways twisted throughout the mountain, but the majority of them met in the middlelevels of the installation in the Service Areas. The Technical Areas of the mountain were quite extensive, housing a variety of laboratories and science stations, presumably to test and refine a number of the alien and exotic technologies stored at the facility. The labs were all located above the Service Areas. The Hangar Bay was also massive, containing the complete complement of vehicles and ships that the garrison commanded, and main hangar area acted as both the maintenance bay and garage. There were also a number of Security Stations scattered throughout. Each of these station rooms had a complete array of sensors for Mount Tantiss's corridors, and served as a checkpoint for individuals travelling through the mountain.
The lower levels of the mountain housed military troops and their respective stations, as well as the vehicles and weapons necessary for defending the mountain. These levels contained food production facilities, an armory and a landing field, among other basic service areas. All evidence indicates that this area received minimal use until the arrival of Grand Admiral Thrawn. While this area of Mount Tantiss was clearly designed for waging military campaigns, it is clear that the Emperor chose not to run his battles from this facility.
The uppermost of these lower levels was where the semi-circular chamber known as the War Room was located. The Command Wing was the hub of military operations at Mount Tantiss, much like the bridge of a Star Destroyer. All administrative duties were carried out in this section. The base commander's office was situated above the main sprawl of the command core, and overlooked the main floor through a massive mirrored viewport. A curving amphitheater-style chamber larger than the Cloning Chamber known as the Main Computer Core was a tremendous bank of computers that compiled and indexed all information that passed through Mount Tantiss's communications and data retrieval systems. The Main Security Section was probably the most utilized department in the entire facility, with the exception of the cloning. The Detention Block was similar to most Imperial holding areas, with row upon row of tiny cells crowded together for the imprisonment of political prisoners, criminals, agitators and the like, which ultimately never saw much use. The Barracks were designed to serve a full battlegroup's worth of soldiers and also all medical staff, technicians and military troops below officer level.
The subterranean levels were located far beneath ground level, which were connected to the lower levels by a series of turbolifts and ladders; it is assumed that they housed Mount Tantiss's four massive powerful fusion reactors, although only three were operational when Grand Admiral Thrawn arrived. Each generator put out enough power to run an Imperial Star Destroyer, indicating that Mount Tantiss, when fully operational, required an immense amount of energy.
Beneath the reactors lies what appears to be a massive maze secretly constructed by Palpatine and designed by Garrbo V'Droz known as "The Labyrinth". These chambers may stretch for kilometers below the surface and their purpose is unknown. A level below contained a hidden crypt, that contained ancient energy weapons, amulets, crystals, alien trinkets and religious idols, mummified bodies and countless other things. The New Republic is unaware of both "The Labyrinth's" existence and the hidden crypt.
Behind the scenes
Mount Tantiss was created by the author Timothy Zahn and first appeared in the 1991 novel Heir to the Empire. The name "Tantiss" was intended by Zahn as a reference to Tantalus, a figure from Greek mythology who abused the privileges of the gods.
- Hero of Cartao (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: Empire at War
- (Mentioned only)
- "The Emperor's Trophy" – Star Wars Galaxy Magazine 11
- Heir to the Empire (First appearance)
- Dark Force Rising (Mentioned only)
- Dark Force Rising audiobook (Mentioned only)
- The Last Command
- The Last Command audiobook
- (Mentioned only)
- (Mentioned only)
- "Retreat from Coruscant" – Star Wars Adventure Journal 7 (Indirect mention only)
- Children of the Jedi (Mentioned only)
- (Mentioned only)
- Specter of the Past
- Specter of the Past unabridged audiobook
- Vision of the Future (Mentioned only)
- Vision of the Future unabridged audiobook (Mentioned only)
- The New Jedi Order: Agents of Chaos I: Hero's Trial
- Emissary of the Void
- "An Apology" (Non-canonical mention)
- Heir to the Empire Sourcebook
- Dark Force Rising Sourcebook
- Galaxy Guide 8: Scouts
- Dark Empire Sourcebook
- The Last Command Sourcebook
- The Jedi Academy Sourcebook
- The Thrawn Trilogy Sourcebook
- Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game, Second Edition, Revised and Expanded
- "ComicScan: Taken by Force" – Star Wars Galaxy Magazine 8
- "ISB Intercepts" – Star Wars Adventure Journal 15
- The Secrets of Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire
- Anakin Skywalker: The Story of Darth Vader
- The New Jedi Order Sourcebook
- "Star Wars Q&A" – Star Wars Insider 67
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Book of Sith: Secrets from the Dark Side
- The Essential Guide to Warfare
- "From Page to Screen and Back Again..." – Star Wars Insider 145