The Tatooine rebel cell, formerly known as Saponza's Gang, was a unit led by Saponza. They were in operation at Saponza's homestead on Tatooine some time after the Battle of Yavin. At that time, they were joined by a former associate of Saponza. The group killed several of Jabba's outlaws, and their base was razed in revenge. They then rebuilt it, receiving offers of help from both the Rebel Alliance and Galactic Empire. After joining the Rebellion, the gang was sent on various missions to combat Imperial forces, Tusken Raiders, and numerous factions of mercenaries and criminals. The gang had bases on Tatooine, Dandoran, Er'Kit, Hoth, Sullust, Takodana, and Yavin 4.
- 1 History
- 2 Behind the scenes
- 3 Appearances
- 4 Sources
- 5 Notes and references
Some time after the Battle of Yavin Saponza's Gang, a group of mercenaries, set themselves up at Saponza's homestead on the planet of Tatooine. At Saponza's request, one of the first things the gang did was upgrade their defenses and construct some turrets in order to retaliate if they ever came under attack. Not long after doing so they were attacked by a group of thugs sent by Jabba the Hutt but easily defeated Jabba's men. Not long after that the group were contacted by Darth Vader of the Galactic Empire demanding their assistance in destroying a Tusken village. The mercenaries obliged and were given 3 All Terrain Standard Transports and the support of TIE fighters in order to complete their goal. After destroying the village the group received a transmission from the rebel leader Leia Organa, requesting their help with stealing medical supplies from a Hutt Cartel base on the planet of Dandoran. With the help of Han Solo and a number of other rebel soldiers the group successfully infiltrated the cartel den and retrieved the medical supplies. When the gang eventually returned to Tatooine they found their headquarters in ruins before receiving a transmission from Bib Fortuna explaining that the attack was due to Saponza and his gang killing Jabba's men. Realizing they were going to need allies in order to combat Jabba and his thugs, Saponza considered allying his gang with both the Rebels and the Empire. Ultimately, the decision came down to Saponza's partner who made the choice to join up with the rebels. The Rebel agent Jennica Pierce was assigned as the commanding officer on behalf of the Alliance.
One of the first missions the gang took part in after joining the Rebellion was clearing out a group of womp rat nests after being ordered by Pierce as they were becoming more aggressive and attacking locals more often. After destroying several nests the mercenaries discovered a small base and laboratory that seemed to be experimenting on the womp rats and the cause of their newfound aggression. The gang quickly destroyed that base only to be informed by Pierce that there was an even larger base that was affiliated with the one the group has just destroyed. Due to size of the second base Pierce supplied Saponza's gang with a Juggernaut Turbo Tank as well as calling in rebel hero Chewbacca to assist in the bases destruction.
Under the Twin Suns
After destroying both labs that were experimenting on the womp rats Pierce made the suggestion that the gang should build up more walls around their homestead in order to help maintain a strong defense against any attackers. Shortly after, Pierce intercepted a transmission from the group who were breeding and experimenting on the womp rats as they were amassing for a sneak attack. When the group attack Saponza and the rest of the gang managed to fight the bulk of them off with the assistance of the Strix, although some managed to retreat. As a result, Saponza sent out scouts to try and find the rival groups headquarters.
In order to prepare for their upcoming assault, the gang upgraded their unit transport in order to ensure a larger attack force could be deployed to the rival gangs bases. Not long after construction Pierce informed the gang that two bases had been discovered so the gang prepared their assault. After destroying the first base the gang gang constructed more credit markets in order to amass more credits whilst waiting for the second base to be located. Eventually, the second base was located and the gang were able to destroy it.
The Sacred Waters
After their recent encounters with the rival mercenaries who were experimenting on womp rats, the gang decided to up their defenses by constructing new turrets. Shortly after this the gang were attacked by a group of Tusken Raiders but managed to fight them off. In order to more efficiently manage their forces the group next built a hero command center in order to request help from rebel heroes. To retaliate against the Tusken's, Saponza's gang attacked a tribe of them who had recently taken over a local moisture farm and swiftly defeated them. After further upgrading their credit markets, the gang received word from their scouts who had located the village the sand people were using as a base for their raids so Saponza and his crew launched an ambush and destroyed this base.
The Jundland General
Not long after a group of Tusken Raiders launched a strategic counterattack against Saponza's gang which gained the suspicion of Saponza due to the well coordinated nature of the attack. In preparation for the conflict, the gang opted to upgrade their barracks in order to train a greater deal of better trained troops.
Not long after, the Tusken camp which launched the attack was located by rebel scouts so the gang, along with some Wookiee warriors supplied by Jennica were deployed and successfully managed to destroy the camp despite its unusually complex structure. As they arrived back at base, the gang were quickly overwhelmed by another group of Tusken's who had waited until the group was vulnerable before attacking. Although the Tusken's were defeated, Saponza was worried by the sudden carefulness and tactics being used by the natives so he headed into Mos Espa to try and gather some intelligence. Whilst he was away, Saponza's partner ordered the construction of more alloy refineries at the suggestion of Jennica Pierce in order to make sure the gang were producing enough resources for any upcoming conflict.
Eventually, Saponza returned with intel but just as he was relaying it to the rest of the group another squad of Tusken's raided with the aid of their Banthas but were again defeated. As discovered by Saponza, the recent attacks and improved strategy were due to the leadership of a Tusken known as the Jundland General. Fed up with the constant raids, the gang upgraded their turrets before heading out to another Tusken enclave located by rebel scouts. Although this wasn't the main headquarters of the general, the gang destroyed the base anyway as it could pose a threat to themselves as well as the local population.
While needed to deal with the Tusken threat, Pierce reminded the gang that the true enemy was still the Galactic Empire and encouraged them to continue building up their HQ in preparation for the war. Despite this, the gang still launched their final assault on the Jundland's headquarters and finally killed him.
A Servant of Two Masters
After the multitude of various attack the gang had received during their time on Tatooine, Saponza decided to construct a proton mortar at their headquarters in order to engage multiple targets at once. Shortly after, Bib Fortuna once again contacted Saponza's gang with the threat that the Hutts would reveal the location of their base to the Empire if they didn't agree to help out the cartel, reluctantly the gang obliged without Pierce's knowledge. The first thing the rebel cell were forced to due was to improve their barracks as Jabba currently didn't see the rebel force on Tatooine as being strong enough to complete the tasks he was to set. The Hutt then sent the gang to destroy several bases that housed rival mercenary groups that he was currently in dispute with, before Jennica eventually realized that the gang was being used and started coming up with a plan to get them free from Jabba's grasp.
Due to the growing number of enemies the rebel cell was making on the desert planet, they decided to once again improve their defenses and construct more turrets. Surely enough, the group were soon attacked by the very same mercenary group the Hutt had been asking them to go after, an attack which swayed the gang to fortify themselves and build more walls.
In time, Jennica was able to put together a plan to free the rebels from Jabba's control, the first stage of which involved the gang raiding a small Imperial base on Tatooine in order to steal data. The gang then built up their unit transport in order to make sure they could maneuver more troops at one time.
Whilst Pierce was continuing to work on the plan, the rebels carried on providing their assistance to Jabba by destroying the last two mercenary bases however upon their return a group of thugs sent by the Hutt ambushed the homestead under the mob boss' orders. For his betrayal the rebel cell quickly retaliated and destroyed on of the outposts the Hutt cartel used to smuggle goods offworld, stealing as much as they could at the same time.
Alliance of Convenience
With the Hutts reeling and no longer after Saponza's crew, the rebels continued to expand their operation by constructing more alloy refineries whilst Pierce began to work on securing an alliance with the Jawas. The first stage in securing this friendship was to attack a group of Tuskens and reclaim a sandcrawler they had recently stolen from the Jawas. Upon stealing back the sandcrawler, the leader of the Jawa clan, Kekit, introuduced himself to the rebel cell's leaders and agreed to help them. In return for the Jawas help, the rebels attack a group of local criminals who had been stealing from the natives.
Not long after securing their alliance, the gang were upgrading their walls when they received word from Kekit that his Sandcrawler had come under attack by more Tusken Raiders, so the rebels quickly came to the rescue. Later, the gang set their sights an another Tusken camp that was too far out into the desert for any soldiers to attack, as a result, Jennica provided 6 Hover Tanks to he gang in order assist with the attack.
As their operations continued to expand, so did the need for credits so the rebels upgraded their credit markets. After this, the Jawas contacted the rebels saying that they had managed to cross the desert and now needed assistance at a town named Mos Doba. The down was deemed an excellent trading location by the Jawas however it had recently been taken over by a criminal gang so the rebels reclaimed the town, leaving the Jawas free to trade at the outpost and in turn, have a better range of supplies to trade with the rebels.
Wreckage of Secrets
A freighter bringing supplies to the rebels called the Atom Edge was shot shot down whilst entering the planets atmosphere and broke up into several pieces upon entry. The rebels travelled to the first half of the ship only to find the Empire was already there and the cargo they needed was nowhere in sight so they decided to check the second half which again had already been claimed although this time by a group of mercenaries who had already retrieved the cargo Saponza and company were after. The rebels tracked the mercenaries to a small base which they raided in search of the missing supplies and successfully managed to take back the cargo which the group used to upgrade their headquarters as well as construct a factory which would allow them to build and maintain their own vehicles.
A rebel starfighter squadron patrolling the sector managed to locate an Imperial listening post on the planet and with the help of Saponza's partner calling out targets, the base was successfully destroyed. In retaliation the Empire sent an attack force to the rebel base but were defeated with the help of a squadron of Y-Wings. The rebels then decided it was time for them to begin targeting the Empire directly and used a range of vehicles supplied by the Rebellion to assault several nearby Imperial outposts.
Shortly after, a small Imperial patrol stumbled across Saponza's homestead and launched an attack. The rebels managed to come out on top and Jennica disposed of the destroyed AT-STs elsewhere on the planet in order to throw off the Empire whilst she could come up with a plan to attack the Empire's larger bases. In preparation for this large scale attack, the rebels upgraded their research lab and vehicle factory before attacking and destroying yet another Imperial station on the planet.
Rebels Shoot First
In time, yet another Imperial patrol stumbled across the homestead and were defeated by the rebels, although this caused Jennica to become anxious that location was soon to become fully discovered by the Galactic Empire and told the rest of the cell to prepare for another mission. The rebels attacked another Imperial station and came into contact with Imperial Commander Kosh, the head of the Imperial garrison on Tatooine. With full scale combat on the horizon, the rebels upgraded their unit transport in order to deploy more forces at one time.
The rebels then began systematically attacking all of the remaining Imperial station that they knew were on Tatooine including a large Imperial alloy factory. After witnessing a group of Rebel pathfinders in action, Saponza wanted to upgrade their barracks to allow for more well trained troops that could match the skill of the highly trained pathfinders.
After destroying a listening post used by the Empire, the rebels then set their sights on the two largest Imperial strongholds on Tatooine: Fort Sunfire and Fort Ironhand. The rebels launched an all out assault on the former, managing to destroy it to the annoyance of Kosh who responded by sending a squadron of Imperial vehicles including Hovertanks, AT-STs, and one Elite AT-AT. After surviving the initial assault, Kosh sent in the 86th legion and after a difficult battle the rebels emerged victorious. Jennica congratulated Saponza and his partner, saying that since they had defeated the majority of Tatooine's stormtrooper garrison, the Empire would now be on the defensive meaning it was the perfect time for the rebels to strike back.
Scoundrels and Schemes
After witnessing the military might of the Empire, the rebel cell began to upgrade their factories in order to produce more powerful vehicles that could battle the Imperials, whilst Jennica worked with Rebel High Command to devise a plan to ensure Tatooine would become free from Palpatine's rule. Eventually, Princess Leia Organa contacted the rebels to congratulate them on all the work they had done so far and let them know they were going to be an integral part of her plan. Saponza and his partner then travelled to Dandoran once more and met up with Han Solo who let them in on the plan based off a type of con know as the Coruscant City Shuffle, the first step of the plan involved levelling an Imperial base and leaving behind a rebel operative to falsely defect.
Once the Empire picked up the false defector, the next stage of the plan was activated: the rebel agent signaled the rest of the rebellion meaning it was time to strike out at another Imperial base. In order to gain the Imperial's trust, the rebel spy fed them information regarding the attack although too late for the Empire to prevent it. In response, the Empire launched a counterattack on Saponza's homestead although they were quickly defeated as they only had foot soldiers since the majority of their vehicles were destroyed in the last attack on the homestead. Whilst rebel leadership worked out the next stages of the plan, the crew upgraded their barracks further.
Solo then contacted Saponza and his partner letting him know that the rebels plan was to stretch Imperial forces so thin that they could go after their real target, ex Senator of Dandoran, Johhar Kessen who was being kept in an Imperial prison to ensure the people of Dandoran stayed in line. Saponza's rebel cell, as well as many other rebel forces launched several different attacks on Imperial bases throughout the Outer Rim Territories as well as Dandoran itself in an attempt to spread the Empire's forces whilst confusing them as to their true goal.
In order to goad the Empire into thinking they were about to attack the largest Imperial base on Dandoran the rebels continued to attack outposts across the planet including a nearby staging area loaded with AT-ATs. With as much security as possible guarding the headquarters on Dandoran the rebels began the final phase of their plan and attacked their true target, the prison holding Kessen. Saponza's rebel cell along with Leia Organa, Han Solo, Chewbacca and other rebel soldiers launched a full scale assault on the facility battling strong Imperial opposition including an AT-ST Mark III but ultimately the rebels achieved their goal and liberated the former senator.
Big Game Hunting
After the string of recent victories the rebels decided to take advantage of this and boost their defenses by installing rocket turrets at their headquarters.
The Rebel Alliance then began discussions with Johhar Kessen in order to get him to use his influence to help out the rebels but in order to persuade him he first requested their help with hunting some of the wildlife found on Tatooine. They first went after a nest of womp rats even killing an alpha womp rat and battling both ambushes from Tuskens and Stormtroopers in the process which Kessen intended to keep, although he also make sure the rest of rats corpses were taken back to their base as he had a plan to use them later on. The next two targets included raiding a Tusken camp to hunt Banthas, and then a mercenary group to hunt their Dewbacks before Kessen encouraged Saponza to upgrade their HQ saying it was "too cramped" to fit a trophy room.
After this, the group launched an attack on a downed ship that had crashed whilst delivering a Rancor to Jabba the Hutt and was later being searched by his men. The rebel's defeated the Hutt's thugs and Kessen then tracked the rancor's footprints to a nearby settlement the rancor had attacked, at which point his suspicions about the beast's tracks were confirmed and he informed the rest of the group they would be hunting this beast from now on.
The first stage of the hunt involved raiding yet another one of Jabba's outposts in search of a large blue crate that would be used to transport the Rancor after they had defeated it. Eventually, the Rancor was located at a site where Jabba's men were already stationed at, hoping to capture the beast alive for their boss. The rebels, along with Kessen and a Tusken guide named Ur Ur were able to defeat the Hutt criminals and finally kill the Rancor before taking it back to their base.
As it turned out, Kessen had purposely been leaving the corpses of womp rats, dewbacks, and banthas out in the open near the landing pads at the base in an attempt to lure a Krayt Dragon towards the rebels. After defending themselves from the krayt dragons attack, they followed the beasts tracks back to where it came from allowing the senator to properly hunt and kill another one of the creatures. With his need to hunt satisfied, Kessen joined the rebellion and vowed to support them in any way he could in the fight against the Empire.
In order to train more rebel pilots to fill the void left by those who perished during the battle of Yavin, Jennica instructed the rebel cell to upgrade their starfighter command center allowing for a greater number of fresh rebel pilots to be trained on Tatooine. Rebel hero Luke Skywalker recommended that the pilots train by using womp rats as target practice, something he himself did when he resided on the desert planet. Saponza's partner oversaw the first of these training sessions which turned out to be a great success.
The Battle for Tatooine
With the support of Senator Kessen, the rebels were able to stop various Imperial shipments from reaching their destination on Tatooine, further weakening the imperial contingent on the planet. With the battle for the planet nearing a head, the rebels improved their barracks to ensure they had sufficient troops to remove the Imperial presence from under the twin suns. The first step in the Battle for Tatooine was an assault by the rebels on Commander Kosh's shipyard where he prepped stolen Imperial ships for his illegal black market smuggling operation. The rebels wanted to provoke a rash response from the Imperial Commander and disrupting his private operations was plan to cause such a response.
After witnessing the black market smuggling operation first hand the rebels constructed their own contraband storehouse in which they could hold onto any contraband they found before moving offworld. As construction began they were once again contacted by Bib Fortuna, representing his master who wished to make a deal with the rebel forces despite their past conflicts. If the rebels were to store contraband for the Hutt then he would supply them with extra firepower to use in their fight against the Empire, a deal which the Alliance ultimately accepted.
After a second attack on one of his black market smuggling operations the Imperial captain eventually retaliated and sent the majority of the Empire's remaining ground forces to attack the rebel base. The rebel cell ultimately came out on top leaving Fort Ironhand more vulnerable than ever. The cell then upgraded their hero command to allow for Sergeant Otto Vans to be more efficiently distributed during the battle for Tatooine. Before making a move on Fort Ironhand the rebel cell had one more target, a nearby facility that's sole purpose was to provide reinforcements to the larger Imperial installation. As many rebel spies lost their life to discover the location of this base, a large scale assault was launched to ensure the facility was completely destroyed and the Empire would have no backup forces when the rebels made the final push to free Tatooine.
The rebels then launched an all out assault to finally destroy Fort Ironhand. The attack was a three stage battle with the rebels attacking the western garrison first, followed by the eastern and then ultimately attacking the main facility with the help of Kekit and his clan. The forces of Saponza's gang, the rebel soldiers as well as the Jawa clan ultimately proved too much for the Imperial's and Fort Ironhand was destroyed ridding Tatooine of the Empire. After their victory Leia Organa contacted the rebel cell and congratulated them on their victory but told them to prepare for further orders stretching beyond the desert planet.
Behind the scenes
- Star Wars: Commander (First appearance)
Notes and references
- Star Wars: Commander
- Star Wars: Galactic Atlas establishes that the Battle of Yavin took place in 0 BBY. Since Star Wars: Commander established that the events of its story mode take place after the Battle of Yavin, then it must have been established after 0 BBY, placing it during 0 ABY or after.
- In Kekit's Databank entry, it is stated that Saponza and his partner played an integral part in the campaign that liberated a Jawa clan from the Tusken Raiders. It also states that the plan was orchestrated by Jennica Pierce of the Rebel Alliance. This scenario does not occur if the player aligns with the Empire, so it can be deduced that Saponza's Gang joined the Rebellion.