- "With these new battle droids we've built for you, you'll have the finest army in the galaxy."
- ―Wat Tambor, to Count Dooku
The Separatist Droid Army, also referred to as the Separatist Army, droid army or as the droid armies, was the ground army force of the Confederacy of Independent Systems during the Clone Wars, and was part of the Confederacy military. The army was mostly built by Baktoid Combat Automata and led by the Kaleesh cyborg General Grievous. According to Count Dooku, Head of State of the Confederacy, at the start of the conflict in 22 BBY the Droid Army out numbered the Republic's clone army one hundred to one. In addition to this opening amount of droids, the Separatists continued to produce droids throughout the war, and one example was in 21 BBY when they ordered more than three million battle droids with the InterGalactic Banking Clan helping to finance this order. The army was deactivated after the Clone Wars, when Darth Sidious rose to power as Emperor of the Galactic Empire.
- "Our friends from the Trade Federation have pledged their support, and when their battle droids are combined with yours we shall have an army greater than any in the galaxy. The Jedi will be overwhelmed, and the Republic will agree to any demands we make."
- ―Count Dooku, to the members of the Separatist Council prior to the Battle of Geonosis
During the Separatist Crisis, Count Dooku's emerging Separatist movement, the Confederacy of Independent Systems, secretly began manufacturing an army of battle droids in the droid factories of the planet Geonosis. The Separatist movement was supported by the Trade Federation, the Commerce Guild, the Techno Union, the InterGalactic Banking Clan, and the Corporate Alliance. The secret droid army was discovered by Jedi Knight Obi-Wan Kenobi, whose capture triggered an attack by the Jedi Order and the Galactic Republic's new Grand Army of the Republic, which had been commissioned by Jedi Master Sifo-Dyas. The outbreak of the Clone Wars played into the hands of Darth Sidious, who masterminded the conflict while simultaneously serving as Supreme Chancellor of the Republic.
- "General Loathsom moved against us as if he was desperate to wipe out a black mark on his ledger."
- ―Republic Senator Bail Organa, discussing the droid forces under Whorm Loathsom
Following the Battle of Geonosis in 22 BBY, the Separatist Droid Army saw action against the Jedi and the Grand Army of the Republic on numerous fronts and worlds across the galaxy including Hissrich, Christophsis, Ryloth, Maridun, and Felucia. On Maridun, Separatist droid forces led by Lok Durd attempted to test the Defoliator weapon on Lurmen migrants but were repelled by the Republic and Jedi led by Jedi General Aayla Secura, General Anakin Skywalker, Commander Ahsoka Tano, and Commander Bly, and Captain Rex.
Later, General Grievous, the Supreme Commander of the Droid Army, was ambushed by Jedi and Republic forces led by General Kit Fisto. Grievous survived the attack and Fisto was forced to flee. The ambush was a test engineered by Dooku to test Grievous' worthiness to lead the Droid Army. Elements of the Droid Army also guarded Separatist scientist Nuvo Vindi's secret laboratory on Naboo, which manufactured stockpiles of the deadly Blue Shadow Virus. On Ryloth, Separatist droid occupation forces faced resistance from Cham Syndulla's Twi'lek Resistance, who continued to combat the droid army until the end of the Separatist occupation.
By 21 BBY, the Separatists had recaptured Geonosis and Poggle the Lesser begun producing more battle droids for the Droid Army. In response, the Republic sent a force led by Jedi Generals Ki-Adi-Mundi, Kenobi, Luminara Unduli, and Skywalker to retake the planet, culminating in the Second Battle of Geonosis. Following fierce fighting, the Republic succeeded in destroying the Geonosis primary droid foundry, killing Karina the Great, and capturing Poggle the Lesser, dealing a major blow to the Separatists.
After General Grievous kidnapped Jedi Master Eeth Koth, the Jedi and clone troopers pursued the Supreme Commander and his contingent of battle droids to Saleucami. Despite sustaining heavy casualties to his forces, the droid general eluded capture. The Droid Army later invaded the Dug homeworld of Malastare in an attempt to cut off the Republic's supply of fuel. Separatist droid forces were disabled by the detonation of an electro-proton bomb, but the bomb awoke a powerful prehistoric creature known as the Zillo Beast.
Separatist forces under General Grievous and Sith assassin Asajj Ventress later attacked the cloning facilities on Kamino in an attempt to disrupt the production of clone troopers. During the battle, the Separatist forces included aqua droids and aquatic Trident-class assault ships. Despite a vigorous attack, the Separatist were repelled by clone and Jedi defenders.
As part of a conspiracy to derail Separatist Senator Mina Bonteri and Republic Senator Padmé Amidala's efforts to forge a peace agreement between the two states, Count Dooku and General Grievous dispatched demolition droids to bomb Coruscant's Central power distribution grid; undermining Bonteri and Amidala's efforts to seek a diplomatic solution to the Clone Wars. Not long after the Separatists ordered an additional three million battle droids with financial backing by the InterGalactic Banking Clan.
- "Count Dooku, we have chosen to remain neutral in this war. Why have you launched this invasion against us?"
"Think of our presence as a peaceful occupation. For your protection and as well as ours."
"I have heard the tragic stories of worlds caught between your droids, and their clones. What of my people?"
- ―Governor Roshti of Kiros and Count Dooku
In 20 BBY, Separatist Droid Army forces under the Karkarodon Commander Riff Tamson joined forces with the Quarren Isolation League and their Quarren warriors to oppose the succession of the Mon Calamari Prince Lee-Char, who was backed by the Republic and Jedi. During the Battle of Mon Cala, the Separatists deployed Aqua droids and Hydroid Medusas against the Mon Calamari and Republic, who were forced to retreat from Mon Cala city. Tamson's Trident assault ships later neutralized Gungan reinforcements led by Jar Jar Binks. Despite capturing most of the opposing Republic and Mon Calamari forces including Prince Lee-Char, the Separatist forces were defeated when the Quarren leader Nossor Ri convinced his people to unite with the Mon Calamari and Republic to expel Tamson's droid forces.
Count Dooku later attempted to forge an alliance with the Gungans using his local collaborator Rish Loo, who bewitched Boss Lyonie. This Separatist plot was foiled by Binks and Roos Tarpals, who succeeded in capturing General Grievous. However, the Gungans and Naboo were forced to release the Separatist Droid General when Dooku threatened to execute General Skywalker. Later, the Droid Army invaded the Togruta colony of Kiros and sold the colonists as slaves to the Zygerrian Slave Empire. General Grievous subsequently commanded the Droid Army's attack against the Nightsisters of Dathomir, whom Count Dooku regarded as a growing threat to the Sith. During the assault, Grievous slew Mother Talzin while the droids killed many Nightsisters.
During the Onderonian Civil War, Separatist droid forces under the Super tactical droid General Kalani later propped up the pro-Separatist regime of King Sanjay Rash of Onderon in the Inner Rim. King Rash and his Separatist backers were opposed by the insurgent Onderon rebels led by Saw Gerrera and his sister Steela, who were aided by the Jedi and the Republic. After winning the support of the rightful King Ramsis Dendup and General Tandin, the Onderon rebels succeeded in expelling Separatist forces from Onderon. Separatist droid forces were also attacked by the local population in the capital Iziz. General Kalani and the surviving droids retreated to the Outer Rim planet Agamar.
In retaliation for the Ohnaka Gang's mistreatment of Count Dooku years earlier, Separatist droid forces under General Grievous attacked Hondo Ohnaka's pirate base on Florrum and laid waste to it. Tano and six Jedi younglings fought against Grievous and his forces but were forced to retreat.
- "Send a message to the ships of the Trade Federation. All droid units must shut down immediately."
- ―Darth Sidious ordering the shutdown of the Separatist's droid forces to Darth Vader
In 19 BBY, elements of the Droid Army under Admiral Trench engaged in the Battle of Ringo Vinda Under orders from Dooku they attempted to kidnap clone trooper "Tup", whose inhibitor chip had malfunctioned and caused him to kill Jedi Master Tiplar. The Separatist was foiled by General Skywalker, Captain "Rex", and ARC trooper "Fives", who rescued "Tup" from Commander Kraken's shuttle. After Count Dooku pressured Rush Clovis, the new head of the InterGalactic Banking Clan, to raise interest rates on the Republic, Separatist droid forces attacked Clone Commander Thorn's forces on Scipio. When the Galactic Senate voted to invade Scipio, Dooku promptly withdrew Separatist forces from the planet. The capture of Scipio gave the Supreme Chancellor control over the banks; placing the galactic economy under the control of the Sith.
Later, two of Grievous' IG-100 MagnaGuards assassinated Jedi Master Tu-Anh on the neutral world of Utapau. While investigating Tu-Anh's death, Master Kenobi and Jedi Knight Skywalker fought the two MagnaGuards and discovered that the Separatists were interested in acquiring a large kyber crystal through several Sugi mercenaries led by Endente. After Kenobi and Skywalker stole the crystal, General brought some droid forces, including some of his MagnaGuards, to recover the crystal. Despite Grievous evacuating the kyber crystal off world, the Jedi managed to destroy the crystal and the Separatist supply ship it was in, the resulting explosion destroying the Separatist fleet around the planet.
The Separatist Droid Army also fought an extended campaign against the Republic on the Core World of Anaxes. Admiral Trench was aided by the Techno Union's Foreman Wat Tambor who used an unconscious clone trooper "Echo" to provide the Separatists with an algorithm on the Republic's strategies. Echo was rescued by Clone Force 99, General Skywalker, and Rex who fought Tambor's D-wing droids and Octuptarra tri-droids with the help of the Poletecs of Skako Minor. With the help of Echo, Skywalker and the clones infiltrated Trench's flagship and disabled his droid army on Anaxes, turning the tide of the battle in favor of the Republic.
After escaping from the Spire prison, Darth Maul's Shadow Collective inflicted heavy casualties on the Droid Army at the Battle of Zanbar before retreating. The Shadow Collective later lured Count Dooku and General Grievous into a trap on Ord Mantell. Separatist ground and space forces were decimated during the battle and the two Separatist leaders were captured by Maul and his allies. Maul's Shadow Collective was later defeated by Separatist forces with the help of Darth Sidious at Dathomir.
Following the death of Count Dooku at the Battle of Coruscant, the Separatist Droid Army battled the Grand Army of the Republic on numerous fronts including Kashyyyk, Utapau, Saleucami, Mygeeto, Felucia, Cato Neimoidia, Mandalore[source?], and Kaller. These battles coincided with Palpatine's initiation of Order 66, which led to the Jedi Purge. Palpatine than transformed the Galactic Republic into the Galactic Empire. Palpatine then sent his new apprentice Anakin Skywalker, who had assumed the persona of Darth Vader, to execute the Separatist Council on Mustafar. Vader also transmitted a signal deactivating the battle droids of the Droid Army, ending the Clone Wars.
Despite the deactivation of the Separatist Droid Army, its legacy still lived on in battle droids that survived the Clone Wars. After the Clones Wars various Separatist holdouts survived and attempted to fight the Empire. During the Imperial Era, group of battle droids under the leadership of General Kalani inhabited the wreckage of a DH-Omni Support Vessel on the planet Agamar. Believing the deactivation signal was a Republic trick, Kalani had overridden the command signal, preventing the shutdown of his droid forces. In 2 BBY,[source?] he encountered the former Clone Captain Rex, the Jedi Purge survivor Kanan Jarrus, and his Padawan Ezra Bridger. Still believing that the Clone Wars had not ended, Kalani organized a final battle with his prisoners. The rebels managed to break through Kalani's lines and Ezra managed to convince Kalani and Rex to put aside their differences in order to escape Imperial forces. This cooperation informally ended the Clone Wars and allowed Rex and Kalani and his droids to make peace with the past.
Another holdout during the reign of the Galactic Empire was the holdout on PM-6986, led by JF-86. After the Battle for Anaxes and a cataclysm that destroyed the planet, a droid army survived on a Separatist stronghold on what would become the planetoid PM-6986. Awoken by a Separatist signal that originated light-years away, JF-86 proceeded to reactivate the rest of the droid army. Following its last orders, JF-86 sought to destroy the Galactic Senate of the Republic, unaware of the events in the galaxy and the transformation of the Republic into the Empire. JF-86 was not able to carry out its plan however, as it possessed no starships to ferry its troops, and as such, was forced to remain on the planetoid, waiting for an opportunity.
The Separatist Droid Army incorporated a variety of combat droids during the Clone Wars, with the the B1 battle droid being the main soldier within the armies of the Separatist Alliance. The B1 battle droid had several variants, including the 631 model of B1, the B1 grapple droid, the B1-series rocket battle droid, the heavy battle droid, the B1 recon droid, the B1 repeater blaster droid, the B1 rocket launcher droid, and the firefighter battle droid.
Variants of the OOM-series battle droid were also used by the Separatists such as the OOM command battle droid, the OOM pilot battle droid, and the security battle droid. The B2 super battle droid also saw use by the Separatist Droid Army, and had several variants, which included the B2-HA super battle droid, the B2 grapple droid, the B2-RP battle droid, and the successor of the B2-RP: the super battle droid rocket trooper.
The ground forces of the Confederacy of Independent Systems also made use of various other models of droids, that served a range of purposes. On the planet Hissrich there was a droid model utilized by the CIS forces under AD-W4, the aqua droid was used for water combat, the BX-series droid commandos and the BX-series droid commando captains for special operations and assignments, IG-100 MagnaGuards for guard duty of important officers, and demolition droids for suicide attacks. Droidekas and their sub-variant, sharpshooter droidekas were also used, as well as B3 battle droids, LR-57 combat droids, D-wing droids, Pistoeka sabotage droids, Viper recon droids, SD-K4 assassin droids and their complement of probe killers, and the Umbaran millicreep droid saw use by the Umbaran Militia.
Vehicles and machineryEdit
- "The clones are pulling back, and the lead tanks are now approaching the city center."
- ―An OOM command battle droid
The Separatist Droid Army was equipped with an array of ground vehicles and machinery. The army made use of several variants of tanks, including the experimental super tank, the Armored Assault Tank, and a variant, the Defoliator Deployment Tank. As a result of Umbara joining the the Separatist Alliance vehicles of the Umbaran Militia, the Umbaran hover tank and the Impeding Assault Tank, were CIS vehicles. In addition to tanks, the armored forces of the Confederacy military also consisted of an arsenal of droid vehicles, including the DSD1 dwarf spider droid, the OG-9 homing spider droid, the IG-227 Hailfire-class droid tank, the Harvester, the NR-N99 Persuader-class droid enforcer, the LM-432 crab droid, and the Octuptarra tri-droid.
Ground transports of the ground forces consisted of the Multi-Troop Transport, the Trade Federation troop carrier, and the XT Beetle Transport. Speeders and other repulsorcraft also composed parts of the Droid Army, with ground forces making use of the Single Trooper Aerial Platform, airspeeders, the and the Flitknot Speeder Bike. The combat speeder and the TSMEU-6 personal wheel bike were used by General Grievous, and the Separatist Droid Army also possessed artillery pieces, which consisted of the the J-1 proton cannon, the Geonosian LR1K sonic cannon. Umbaran forces used the Umbaran mobile heavy cannon.
Weapons and equipmentEdit
- "We must turn back and set up our deflector shields."
- ―General Whorm Loathsom
The Separatist Droid Army possessed a vast array of weapons for their ground forces. The Droid Army made use of the E-5 blaster rifle, the E-5C, the E-5s sniper rifle, and the RG-4D. Other ranged weapons included the fixed double-barrel repeating blaster, the Geonosian sonic blaster, the Umbaran blaster pistol, the wrist blaster, and the Z-6 rotary blaster cannon.
Separatist ground forces also deployed melee weapons, which consisted of the vibroblade, the electrostaff, the stun baton, and the droid commando personal shield. Electropoles saw use by two B1 battle droids to force Gutkurrs out to attack Ghost Company in Nabat. The army also made use of a range of explosives, including the RPS-6 rocket launcher, the thermal annihilator bomb, the thermal detonator, mines, and long-range missiles. The Droid Army was also equipped with precision laser darts, along with imagecasters, deflector shields, macrobinoculars, comlink booster packs, fire hoses, and rocket packs.
Behind the scenesEdit
The Separatist Droid Army first appeared in the 2002 feature film Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones, where they served as the forces of the antagonistic Confederacy of Independent Systems. The Droid Army later appeared in several Legends media and literature including the Cartoon Network television series Star Wars: Clone Wars, Dark Horse Comics' Star Wars: Republic, and the Republic Commando multimedia series. The Droid Army also appeared in the 2005 feature film Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith and the Canon Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated series, which ran from 2008 to 2013. The Droid Army has also appeared in Canon literature and media such as Marvel Comics' Star Wars: Kanan series and the 2016 Star Wars Rebels episode "The Last Battle".[source?]