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"It's experimental, but the TIE/sk x1 air superiority fighter is a demon in atmospheric environments."
Antoc Merrick in The Rebel Files[11]

The TIE/sk x1 experimental air superiority fighter, also known as the TIE/sk atmospheric fighter or simply the TIE striker, was a streamlined variant of the TIE fighter series starfighters used by the Galactic Empire, most notably during the Battle of Scarif. Specialized for in-atmosphere missions, the atmospheric fighter was identifiable by its horizontal high-speed wings and large central pod. Largely because of its specialization for such missions, it was one of the few TIE models to be used by the Imperial Army as well as the Imperial Navy.


Pure Sabacc TIE Striker XWM

The TIE striker performed optimally in atmospheric operations

The TIE/sk x1 experimental air superiority fighter[1] featured flat, pointed wings specially designed for in-atmosphere combat.[6] Thus,[1] it was faster than the standard TIE/ln space superiority starfighter.[12]

However, the striker's wings were unusually shaped; straying from the typical TIE fighter's wing shapes, the TIE/sk's wings helped increase the ship's VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) capacity.[1] The craft was able to gain additional speed by curling down its wings,[6] engaging from flight mode to attack mode.[1]

The fighter was heavily armed, sporting four pairs of laser barrels[1] and proton bombs that were particularly effective against vehicle units, dealing heavy damage over a large area.[13] The TIE variant was equipped with ArmaTek's VL-61/79 proton bombs, which were deployed from a proton bomb chute fitted upon the armored hull of the craft's underside.[1]

Although its intended role was as an atmospheric fighter, it could also be used as a starfighter to some extent,[10] and accompany standard TIE fighters.[8] However, the attributes that made the striker a useful atmospheric fighter made it less than ideal in space.[1]

The TIE striker could be further modified with lightweight frames, thus allowing for an increased speed.[14] The craft was also useful for shifting supplies and personnel from orbit to the planet surface, thanks to a larger central pod.[6]


A New Order[]

ImperialTrainee-XWM Anthony Devine

A trio of Imperial cadets perform a fly-by of the Death Star.

The TIE/sk x1 experimental air superiority fighter served the Galactic Empire during its reign.[1] They were new as of the second Empire Day[15] in 18 BBY[9] and flew during the parade. The HoloNet News reporter Calliope Drouth hoped to do a segment on them.[15]

In large part due to the decommissioning of many clone troopers from the ranks of the Imperial Military, fresh cadets were often utilized for piloting the TIE striker, of which at least one squadron did a fly-by near the then-under construction Death Star.[10]

Sometime after the smuggler Han Solo took ownership of the Millennium Falcon, a TIE striker was located at Rekias Nodo's shipyard.[16]

Galactic Civil War[]

Spark of rebellion[]

"I've got one on my tail!"
―An X-wing pilot at the Battle of Scarif[5]
Duchess TIE Striker XWM

The TIE striker served alongside Imperial forces.

By the time[1] of the Galactic Civil War, a galaxy-wide conflict in which the Alliance to Restore the Republic waged a rebellion against the Empire to restore democratic rule to the galaxy,[17] the starfighter was utilized for in-atmosphere engagements and the defense of important Imperial bases.[1] In particular, because of the secrecy behind the Imperial security complex on the jungle planet Scarif requiring a vigilant and swift defense force, the TIE pilots stationed there utilized the fighters.[18]

The TIE strikers notably defended Scarif during a Rebel attack[6] that was part of the Rebel mission to steal the plans to Project Stardust, the DS-1 Death Star Mobile Battle Station. During the battle, the TIE strikers entered dogfights with various Rebel aligned craft, with some also escorting a TIE/rp Reaper attack lander to deliver a squad of death troopers to deal with Rogue One.[5] The TIE pilot "Duchess" flew a striker in the battle.[19]


TIE Strikers fly in the Battle of Scarif

The human Imperial pilots "Countdown" and "Duchess"[20] were amongst those who serviced the Empire aboard TIE strikers. The foremost pilot[21] targeted a T-65B X-wing starfighter during the battle of Scarif.[22] Despite the efforts of Scarif's TIE striker pilots, the overall Scarif Deployment, and the orbiting naval forces, the Battle of Scarif ended in[5] the Alliance's first major victory over the Empire[23] as Alliance strike team Rogue One was able to transmit the Stardust data plans to the orbiting Alliance Fleet,[5] enabling the Alliance to destroy the DS-1 Death Star Mobile Battle Station in the subsequent Battle of Yavin.[23] Other TIE striker crew members of the Galactic Civil War era included "Pure Sabacc," who serviced during the Civil War,[24] and Black Squadron of the Imperial Army Air Corps.[25]

Dusk of the Empire[]

Imperial Governor Hastemoor had several TIE strikers in his planet's defense force on Troithe. After the Battle of Endor, they engaged the New Republic attackers during the Cerberon system campaign, but were unable to keep the advancing forces from cutting off the capital.[26]

The TIE striker was still in the service of the Galactic Empire[27] in 5 ABY,[28] with several TIE strikers being present at the Rothana Imperial Shipyards around the time of the Battle of Jakku.[27] During the battle itself, TIE strikers were utilized on Jakku's surface to combat the New Republic. The Empire was ultimately defeated in the battle,[29] and thus ended the Galactic Civil War.[30]

Behind the scenes[]

The TIE striker was created and developed for the 2016 film Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The TIE striker was first revealed on May 17, 2016, in a preview for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story: The Official Visual Story Guide, a cancelled reference book for the film that was rewritten as Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide.[1]



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Notes and references[]

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 1.24 1.25 1.26 1.27 1.28 1.29 1.30 1.31 1.32 1.33 1.34 Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide
  2. 2.0 2.1 Dawn of Rebellion
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 TIE Fighter Owners' Workshop Manual
  4. Star Wars Encyclopedia of Starfighters and Other Vehicles
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 Secrets of the TIE Striker: An EW Rogue One video by Breznican, Anthony on Entertainment Weekly (October 31, 2016) (archived from the original on June 21, 2018)
  7. StarWars-DatabankII TIE striker in the Databank (backup link)
  8. 8.0 8.1 Star Wars Is Adding Some Gorgeous New Ships For Rogue One on gizmodo.com (archived from the original on July 28, 2019)
  9. 9.0 9.1 SWInsider "The Voice of the Empire" — Star Wars Insider 170 establishes that TIE strikers were new as of the second Empire Day. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates the first Empire Day to 19 BBY, and the second occurred one year after the first, in 18 BBY.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 FFGXWMG Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures GameTIE Striker Expansion Pack (Card: Imperial Trainee—TIE Striker)
  11. Star Wars: The Rebel Files
  12. Star Wars Rebels: Head to Head states that the TIE/ln space superiority starfighter had a maximum speed of 1,200 kph, whilst Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide states that the TIE/sk x1 experimental air superiority fighter could attain speeds up to 1,500 kph.
  13. Star Wars: Commander
  14. FFGXWMG Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures GameTIE Striker Expansion Pack
  15. 15.0 15.1 SWInsider "The Voice of the Empire" — Star Wars Insider 170
  16. Choose Your Destiny: A Han & Chewie Adventure
  17. Star Wars: Complete Locations
  18. FFGXWMG Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures GameTIE Striker Expansion Pack (Card: Scarif Defender—TIE Striker)
  19. FFGXWMG Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures GameTIE Striker Expansion Pack (Card: "Duchess"—TIE Striker)
  20. FFGXWMG Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures GameTIE Striker Expansion Pack (Card: "Duchess"—TIE Striker)
  21. The reference book Ultimate Star Wars states that the TIE fighter pilots of the Galactic Empire were all humans.
  22. FFGXWMG Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures GameTIE Striker Expansion Pack (Card: "Countdown"—TIE Striker)
  23. 23.0 23.1 Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
  24. FFGXWMG Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures GameTIE Striker Expansion Pack (Card: "Pure Sabacc"—TIE Striker)
  25. FFGXWMG Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures GameTIE Striker Expansion Pack (Card: Black Squadron Scout—TIE Striker)
  26. Shadow Fall
  27. 27.0 27.1 Poe Dameron 9
  28. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas places the Battle of Jakku in the year 5 ABY.
  29. Aftermath: Empire's End
  30. Star Wars: The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary

External links[]