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Every walker was only as strong as its weakest joint.

"These weapons of war would be awe-inspiring, were they not so terrifying."
Supreme Chancellor Palpatine[src]

A walker was any vehicle, usually military, that used legs as its primary method of locomotion rather than the more common repulsors, wheels, or treads. The term could also refer to especially large droids with legs (usually combat droids), though such droids were usually referred to using more specific terminology (such as "spider droid"). The All Terrain series contained some of the most well known examples of walkers. The designs for walkers utilized by the Galactic Empire were directly inspired by the successful use of animal cavalry from ancient civilizations.[1]

Walkers were first utilized during the Clone Wars, with then-Supreme Chancellor Palpatine even admitting that, while awe-inspiring, they also were a terrifying force to behold.[2]

Owing to their use of legs for locomotion, they held several advantages to repulsorlift vehicles, including them being able to freely operate on worlds with atmospheric conditions that prohibit the operation of repulsorlift vehicles. As such, they are obviously immune to anti-repulsorlift jammers. In addition, part of the reason why the walkers were frequently designated as "all-terrain" was because they were able to react to changing surface conditions and shift footing similar to ordinary soldiers, unlike repulsorlift vehicles and/or treaded vehicles, and yet are still able to brace the ground against the recoil of heavy weaponry. They do have their weaknesses, however: Namely, while they are immune to anti-repulsorlift jammers, they are not immune to having their feet blown off by explosive mines.[3]

Types of walkers[]

"Walkers are upon you before you know it."
―Saying by Rebel troops, dispelling the illusion of walkers as slow, plodding vehicles[src]

Galactic Republic walkers[]

An All Terrain Tactical Enforcer.

Confederacy of Independent Systems walkers[]

LM-432 crab droid

Imperial walkers[]

All Terrain Scout Transport

Eternal Alliance[]

Corporate Sector Authority walkers[]

Espo walker 91

New Republic walkers[]

Yuuzhan Vong walkers[]

Behind the scenes[]

Walkers in other media[]

Star Wars has popularized the use of various walkers and mechs in various media, from various Japanese anime to video games like Command and Conquer and Metal Gear. Most of these mechs bear resemblance to the AT-ST. Also, Japanese scientists have constructed a Land Walker which might have been inspired by Star Wars walkers.


George Lucas claimed he got the original idea for walkers from the cargo lifters which reside in the port of Oakland.[4][5] However, at the very least the AT-AT had gotten direct inspiration from two sources: One was the tripod walkers from The War of the Worlds from George Lucas's own testimony.[6] The other, cited by Joe Johnston, was the Cybernetic Anthropomorphous Machine (CAM) that was commissioned by the United States Army for potential use in the Vietnam War before being abandoned by General Electric. Contrary to popular belief, the four-legged cranes in Oakland were not the inspiration for the AT-ATs.[7]


Imperial walkers in battle

Non-canon appearances[]

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Notes and references[]

  1. Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds Database
  2. The New Essential Guide to Vehicles and Vessels
  3. Star Wars: Imperial Handbook: A Commander's Guide
  4. [1]
  5. [2]
  6. Star Wars Episode VI: The Empire Stikes Back DVD commentary
  7. How Star Wars Conquered the Universe: The Past, Present and Future of a Multibillion Dollar Franchise, Page 236