Zsinj's Empire was the vast region of space ruled by the Imperial breakaway Warlord Zsinj between 4 and 8 ABY. It was established in the Quelii Oversector, where Zsinj was Grand Moff, before expanding outward from there.
Zsinj's Empire was created following Emperor Palpatine's death, after Zsinj de facto refused to recognize the authority of the Imperial Ruling Council and became an independent warlord. In the immediate upheaval following the Battle of Endor, Zsinj never denied his loyalty to the Empire Proper—a lesson seemingly learned from the bombastic denunciation his proud mother, an Imperial fleet commander, had issued before she went rogue and was thereafter hunted down by her own son.
After setting up his capital on Serenno, Zsinj began referring to himself first and foremost by his title of Warlord of the Empire and symbolically renamed his Super Star Destroyer Iron Fist after his old ship, locking down Quelii Oversector with staggering viciousness and success. However, the Ruling Council's advisers supported his tactics at first, so his break with central authority was not entirely evident.
While Zsinj dealt with threats from local rebels ruthlessly, he also sent emissaries to the Alliance of Free Planets. Soon to declare itself the New Republic, the diplomatic contacts the warlord established enabled the self-proclaimed heir of the Old Republic to concentrate on defeating the Imperial government on Coruscant.
Zsinj's diplomatic relations with other factions of the Imperial Civil War varied. There were conflicts with Treuten Teradoc's Greater Maldrood and Ardus Kaine's Pentastar Alignment, while the Ciutric Hegemony and loyalist Galactic Empire (where the warlord still had allies like Admiral Llon Banjeer) coexisted peacefully alongside Zsinj's Empire.
Zsinj recruited some Imperial officers into his forces, focusing especially on those with an Intelligence background. He also created a vast support network independent from his military force. Having consolidated his forces, the warlord took over the Tion Hegemony, extended his protection to the Corporate Sector, and annexed some territory along the Hydian Way abandoned by Ardus Kaine, extending his empire as far as Bogden in the Inner Rim.
During this time, Dathomir became one of the most important worlds of Zsinj's Empire: the warlord built the orbital complex Rancor Base, started mining operations on Dathomir's fourth moon, and initiated some of his many special projects.
In 5–6 ABY, Zsinj's Empire's relations with the New Republic became heated. Mon Calamari fleet admirals Kalback and Ragab attempted to gain a foothold on the Hydian Way, both were repelled by Zsinj's forces. New Republic plans to attack Zsinj had existed since 4 ABY, but were sidetracked first by the Battle of the Hast Shipyards with the loyalist Empire, then with the emergence of Lord Shadowspawn. Viewing both his Imperial and New Republic opponents as inferior, Zsinj eventually felt secure enough in his power to challenge the New Republic directly. Controlling his forces from Rancor Base, Zsinj became increasingly ambitious, going as far as to attack New Republic colonies at New Alderaan and Selacron.
After the fall of Coruscant, forces previously loyal to the Coruscant Imperial government joined Zsinj's Empire, including members of Ysanne Isard's Imperial Intelligence. At the height of his power, Zsinj had gained control over a mammoth area of the known galaxy, absorbing the holdings of rivals Grand Moff Nigel Nivers and Admiral Terrinald Screed (whom he executed), and challenging the authority of the New Republic and Empire alike.
Ultimately, war with the New Republic proved disastrous for Zsinj's Empire. Zsinj himself was "hunted" by the Solo Fleet, which forced him to retreat after forming a temporary alliance with the forces of the Galactic Empire under Admiral Teren Rogriss, crippling his illicit financial network and defeating his forces in a string of engagements.
Zsinj's death left the Galactic Empire free to return their focus to the New Republic. The warlord's holdings were contested by Admiral Gial Ackbar of the New Republic, Admiral Teren Rogriss of the loyalist Empire, and Teradoc of the Greater Maldrood, with Ackbar as the clear winner. While Zsinj's forces remained active, they lacked direction. Much of his fleet was claimed by a number of independent warlords, most notably Teradoc.
Zsinj's Empire continued to use old Imperial vehicles as the bulk of its fleet. Zsinj called upon multiple Imperial-class Star Destroyers in battle. During the Battle of Talasea Zsinj's forces used a EF76 Nebulon-B escort frigate and a CR90 corvette. Other ships included Victory-class Star Destroyers, Dreadnaught-class heavy cruisers, Lancer-class frigates, Carrack-class cruisers and Quasar Fire-class bulk cruisers. Zsinj's Empire was also in possession of more exotic tools of war such as the orbital nightcloaks and Zsinj's flagship, the Executor-class Star Dreadnought Iron Fist.
Zsinj's forces primarily used standard Imperial TIE Series starfighters such as TIE/LN starfighters, TIE/IN interceptors and TIE/sa bombers. However, the Rancor Base also designed an unofficial Zsinj-exclusive TIE variant named TIE Raptor. Although not as fast as a TIE Interceptor, this fighter was as maneuverable as an A-wing, and heavily armed, with four laser cannons and two concussion missile tubes. A few prototypes were also equipped with shields.
While part of the Stormtrooper Corps was under Zsinj's command, the lack of Imperial Academies or cloning facilities meant that the numbers of stormtroopers began to dwindle. Unlike other warlords who chose to equip regular Imperial Army Troopers with stormtrooper armor, Zsinj took a different path. He created the Raptors, a special-forces unit charged with enforcing Zsinj's will throughout his growing territory. Arguably more loyal to Zsinj than the stormtroopers had been to Emperor Palpatine and his legal successors, they were commonly considered the most recognizable symbol of the warlord's power.
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- X-Wing: Wraith Squadron
- X-Wing: Iron Fist
- X-Wing: Solo Command
- The Courtship of Princess Leia (First appearance)
- Tatooine Ghost (Mentioned only)
- Cracken's Threat Dossier
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- The Essential Chronology
- The Essential Guide to Vehicles and Vessels
- The New Essential Chronology
- The Essential Atlas