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This article is about the Separatist droid. You may be looking for the buzz-droid, a model of combat droid.
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"They're shutting down all the controls!"
―Obi-Wan Kenobi, during the Battle of Coruscant[7]

Pistoeka sabotage droids, better known simply as buzz droids, were a type of insect-like automatons that were deployed in swarms during battlefleet actions by the Confederacy of Independent Systems. They could wreak havoc upon squadrons of starfighters that happened to fly through a formation of such deployed droids. Approximately one-quarter of a meter in diameter and well armed for their role, they were typically delivered by discord missiles from droid tri-fighters and Vulture droid starfighters.

Design and function[]

Buzz droids attacking Obi-Wan Kenobi's Eta-2 Actis-class Jedi interceptor.

Buzz droids were intended to disable instead of destroy their targets. Since they were so effective when being deployed by droid tri-fighters, the CIS retrofitted a number of Vulture droids to carry them as well. The buzz droids also had simple maneuvering jets that helped them to move while still encased within their spheres. Once they came into contact with an enemy starship, they would use a magnetic leg to gain a foothold. The outer shell was coated with a heat dissipating alloy that allowed it to penetrate enemy shields; it was also constructed of shock-absorbing materials.

The buzz droid's design was based off the pisto, a pest that lived in tropical regions on the planet Colla IV. When pressed for more droids by the Confederacy, the Colicoids took their existing repair droids and modified them to be saboteurs.[8]

They apparently communicated through chattering, as shown when a group of buzz droids cut off the dome head of R4-P17, Obi-Wan Kenobi's astromech droid, during the Battle of Coruscant.[7]

In some instances, buzz droids were deployed against living beings such as enemy infantry, with gruesome results.[9]

Each droid has a main eye and two secondary eyes used for additional spacial awareness, an x-ray sensor, an extendable probe capable of invading computer systems, and is powered by a reactor primed for self destruction.


"I'm hit! Anakin?"
"I see them. Buzz droids."
―Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker[7]

Introduced around the same time as tri-fighters, sabotage droids were feared by Republic pilots. They were often deployed when Separatist commanders wanted to capture starships.[10]

Their earliest recorded use was comparatively late in the Clone Wars, when the Venator-class Star Destroyer Renown was seized by the Separatists. The droids were led by a tactical droid, which dispatched a lone buzz droid to search for the Republic's D-Squad, which had boarded the ship and was in hiding. The buzz droid was seen, and led D-Squad to a swarm of buzz droids. R2-D2 created a perimeter of fire, and M5-BZ sacrificed itself to draw the buzz droids out an airlock and into the void of hyperspace.[11]

Discord missiles were carried aboard tri-fighters at the defense of Cato Neimoidia. They were launched against Eta-2 interceptors piloted by Anakin Skywalker and his Padawan Ahsoka Tano. A discord missile expelled its complement of buzz droids, which attached to Skywalker's craft. he and his astromech R2-D2 knocked away several droids, but the remainder succeeded in causing Skywalker's starfighter to crash, although the pilot and astromech managed to escape.[12]

Some buzz droids were deployed from a HMP droid gunship to attack a Nu-class attack shuttle that carries a entranced clone trooper Tup.[13]

A buzz droid.

During the Battle of Coruscant, Obi-Wan Kenobi's Jedi interceptor was covered in a swarm of buzz droids, which destroyed his astromech, R4-P17. His former Padawan, Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker, tried to save him by blasting the buzz droids off, which only resulted in the loss of most of Kenobi's port S-foil. Skywalker then tried to scrape the droids off, which destroyed most of the buzz droids still active at the expense of several more systems on both Obi-Wan and Anakin's respective craft. However, a lone droid scrambled over to Skywalker's interceptor. His astromech, R2-D2, destroyed the buzz droid by hitting it in its central eye with his built-in fusion-welder. The buzz droid bounced over his fighter and was sent jetting away when it fell behind the exhaust of his engines.[7]

Skywalker and Kenobi later encountered buzz droids on foot as they explored the Invisible Hand as they searched for Chancellor Palpatine. The droids were effective against infantry, swarming their opponents and latching onto them. They were no match, however, for a lightsaber, as used by the two Jedi.

Buzz droids became a very deadly weapon once Darth Sidious gave the plans of the Galactic Republic's starfighters to the CIS, and proved effective at destroying these craft in battle. Following the execution of the Separatist Council by Sidious's new apprentice, Darth Vader, these units were deactivated.

However, the billions of buzz droids left behind at the end of the Clone Wars were later utilized to great effect in junk yards, while others were taken to droid gladiator rings.

In addition, during the early stages of the Galactic Civil War, several were also involved in an incident above Coruscant, where they also attacked a Star Tours-owned StarSpeeder 1000 that had fled from an Imperial-orchestrated raid at Spaceport THX1138, although R2-D2 had managed to drive them off.[14]

The next time they would be seen in combat was within the hands of the Zann Consortium, which utilized large quantities of these droids during the Galactic Civil War to bring havoc to enemy ship systems during combat. These droids would be deployed from upgraded StarViper-class attack platforms.[6]

Weapon systems[]

"R2, hit the buzz droid's center eye."
―Obi-Wan Kenobi to R2-D2[7]

R2-D2 destroying a buzz droid.

Although individual tools might vary for each mission, the little buzz droids that were used in the Battle of Coruscant carried the following weapons: drill heads, puncture and cutting blades, plasma cutting torches, circular saws, prying hooks, and picket and pincer arms. The buzz droids' three sensor eyes included multiple filters and X-ray sensors. Darth Sidious provided the manufacturers of the buzz droid with design schematics of Republic starfighters then in use for maximum efficiency.

Behind the scenes[]

There were plans to introduce a buzz droid generator in the Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith video game. It was to be a mobile machine that would constantly produce buzz droids. Although this was not included in the final game, concept art for the generator was available on the game's official website and on the video game itself.

In LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga, buzz droids are featured as an extra playable character, only accessible with Extra toggle and in Episode III levels. Its only ability is to smack with a circular saw device.


A buzz droid nearly hit by laser cannon fire

Non-canon appearances[]


Notes and references[]