A remnant of the fallen Galactic Empire had secretly established themselves from the disbanded Imperial Navy and were based in the Queluhan Nebula within the Unknown Regions. Commanded by Grand Moff Randd, the remnant upgraded its TIE fighters by giving them stronger weapons that nullified enemies' shields.
- "In the month since the Battle of Jakku, the Empire has attempted no further large-scale offensives. Sources report all Imperial vessels within the Core and Inner Rim staying within the boundaries defined by the treaty. A few prominent members of the Provisional Senate have speculated that the New Republic's war with the remnants of the Empire has finally come to an end and that a final surrender may be imminent. However, in her address today, the chancellor warned that all planets should remain on high alert, and the New Republic Starfleet should be kept on a war footing for the foreseeable future."
- ―A news holo a month following the Battle of Jakku
Following the Galactic Empire's fragmentation in the aftermath of the Battle of Endor in 4 ABY, bought upon by by Galactic Emperor Darth Sidious's death, the Empire became leaderless. This imbalance resulted in a massive power vacuum, leading to a number of warlords seizing control of territories for themselves within a few weeks. Grand Vizier Mas Amedda acted as proxy Emperor but reality, he held little real influence beyond the throneworld of Coruscant. His reign was troubled from the beginning, with his powers and influence fading as Grand Admiral Rae Sloane, bestowed unto her by the mysterious Fleet Admiral Gallius Rax, served as the public face of the Empire while he ruled from behind the scenes. Rax soon did away with her and declared himself as de facto emperor.
Within a year of Endor, Rax had proclaimed himself as Counselor to the Empire and oversaw the largest factions of the Empire which was decisively defeated by the New Republic after his death at the Battle of Jakku in 5 ABY, resulting in the end of the war and the Empire signing an armistice called the Imperial Instruments of Surrender, setting the stage to a formal end to hostilities. This was followed by the peace treaty sighing of the Galactic Concordance with the Republic that called for the disbanding of the Galactic Empire, leading to it collapsed, with scattered Imperial remnants emerging to fill the void in it place.
- "Yes, sir. I only mean—nominating someone for that honor is a big step, one others might comment upon as a sign of factionalism."
- ―Dalven reacting to Windrider nominating Ciena Ree for the Distinguished Medal of Honor
In the wake of rising factionalism across the former Empire, Grand Moff Randd and some of his forces who had retreated from Jakku into the Queluhan Nebula, reorganised into an Imperial remnant and made preparations for a renewed offensive against the New Republic, as the nebula ionized gases ensured that the Republic's sensors could not detect them, allowing these Imperials to amass a large fleet without being noticed.
A month after the Battle of Jakku, Randd and several other Imperial officers, including Nash Windrider, nominated Ciena Ree who was believed to had perished on Jakku for the Distinguished Medal of Imperial Honor which was the highest honor in the Imperial Military. As flight commander, Nash restored "proper discipline" among his crew to the extent that none of them turned away from their work when he left the command bridge. Windrider was also assisted by Thane's estranged older brother Dalven Kyrell, a third-class desk officer who held the rank of Lieutenant. After listening to a New Republic "propaganda broadcast," Windrider believed that the rebels had grown complacent and were underestimating the remnants of the Empire. He watched as an Imperial fleet prepared for a strike against the Republic and vowed to avenge Ciena's purported death.