Shadows of the Empire
Galactic Civil War
The Spark of Rebellion
In the years leading up to the war, Senators Organa, Mothma, and Bel Iblis openly spoke out about the atrocities of the Empire. Even while doing so, they were constantly under fire by Imperial officials. After time, Mothma had to go into hiding while Bel Iblis was thought dead after an inconclusive assassination attempt.
The Alliance to Restore the Republic was formed and lines were drawn. War was now inevitable, and the Empire knew this. So, they took the precautions they deemed necessary to avoid war at all costs.
A New Threat
As the Alliance grew, so did the the Empire’s need to maintain complete physical and psychological domination over their citizens. Their answer came with the completion of their new super-weapon, the Death Star.
Designed by Rebel sympathizer, Galen Erso, and overseen by Director Orsen Krennic, the Death Star was meant to be the Empire’s foremost symbol of their might and potential. However, Erso was able to leak information about the station to a defected Imperial pilot. The Alliance dispatched Captain Cassian Andor and Galen Erso’s daughter, Jyn Erso, to Jedha to retrieve the pilot and the message they had from Galen.
The Initial Test
In their efforts, they found themselves kept prisoner by the fanatic Saw Gerrara. While captive, Saw shared Galen’s message with Jyn where he revealed to her the existence of the Death Star, as well as the trap he set to destroy it. However, they would need the structural plans to the station. For that, they would need to get them from the data vaults in the Citadel Tower on Scarif.
Unbeknownst to them, the Death Star had chosen Jedha City as the initial test site for the Death Star’s super-laser. In a matter of seconds the city was obliterated and forced Saw’s rebels, as well as Jyn, Cassian, the Imperial pilot to evacuate the planet. While on Jedha, they also made allies with two former Guardians of the Kyber Temple, Chirrut Imwe, and Baze Malbus. Barely escaping with their lives, they set course for Eadu to find and rescue Galen Erso.
The Truth Revealed
Once they arrived on Eadu, their transport was forced to crash land, causing them to lose communication with the Alliance. Captain Andor and Bodi Rook (the defected Imperial pilot) went to scout the area while the rest of the crew stayed back to try to restore communication. With assistance from Rook, Andor was able to identify Galen Erso on the landing pad, where he intended to carry out his true mission, Erso’s assassination. In the end, Cassian couldn’t follow through with the order he knew was wrong.
Andor was distrupted though by an incoming Rebel squadron. Jyn was also caught up in the fight, as she had discretely made her way on to the landing pad. Galen Erso died in his daughter’s arms after a proton bomb from an alliance fighter detonated right in front of him. The Alliance crew was able to escape once again using a stolen Imperial shuttle.
After narrowly escaping Eadu, the crew returned to Alliance High Command where their relayed to news of the Death Star’s existence and weakness. The Council could not agree on the possibility of success in invading Scarif for the plans. In the end, Jyn’s pleas were not well received.
With the Alliance looking all but lost, Captain Andor came to Jyn’s defense and rallied a crew willing to carry out the mission. Even without the support of the Alliance fleet, Jyn and her crew made course for Scarif under their new call-sign, Rogue One.
The Battle of Scarif
With nothing left but hope, Jyn’s crew managed to safely land on Scarif. From there, Cassian, Jyn, and K-2SO (Cassian’s reprogrammed Imperial droid) disguised themselves as Imperial officers, and infiltrated the base at Scarif. In the meantime, Chirrut and Baze led the ground troops and spread themselves around the outskirts of the base. When Cassian gave the signal, the ground troops sprung their trap.
Multiple explosions rung through the base. Director Krennic (now overseeing the base), ordered the deployment of the garrison to push back the rebel intruders. Using guerrilla tactics, the Alliance ground forces were able to appear a much larger force than they actually were. Thanks to their efforts, they were able to minimize the threat to Jyn and Cassian as they made their way to the data vault.
The Rebels were able to hold their own until the Empire deployed their armored units. Now on the run, it was only a matter of time for the ground forces. However, help came at the the last minute when the Alliance fleet dropped out of hyperspace above the planet, completely taking the Empire by surprise. Spearheaded by Admiral Raddus, the fleet engaged the Empire above the planet, while Blue Squadron was sent to provide air support to the ground forces.
Cassian and Jyn were able to find and retrieve the Death Star plans, but were overrun by Stormtroopers. K-2SO sacrificed himself to save their lives, but they had to climb their way out of the vault. In their escape, Cassian was injured by Director Krennic, and Jyn was left to transmit the plans herself.
In the meantime, the Empire managed to close the shield gate surrounding the planet, trapping everyone inside and keeping them from transferring the date files from the surface. Bodi took action to send a signal to the Alliance fleet, while Chirrut and Baze led their team to activate a master switch giving Bodi communications. Chirrut was able to throw the switch, but was killed in action. Baze ran to his friend’s side, and was able to hold off the rest of the Imperial forces until he too sacrificed himself. Bodi made contact with the fleet, but in his last moments found himself overrun by Imperial forces, using his last moments to relay his message.
Now tasked with deactivating the shield, Raddus had to think fast. After Gold Group was able to disable a nearby Star Destroyer, Raddus had a Hammerhead Corvette ram it into another Star Destroyer. The ensuing collision, and following chaos, destroyed the shield generator. Jyn could now transfer the Death Star plans to the fleet.
Jyn made her way to the top of the Citadel Tower where, after realigning the radar dish, was confronted by Krennic. Thinking he finally stopped the Rebels, Krennic was yet again stopped when Cassian came to Jyn’s rescue. Jyn transmitted the plans to the fleet, and the two began to retreat, leaving Krennic unconscious on top of the tower.
Raddus recieved the transmitted plans, and immediately sounded their retreat. However they were trapped as the Death Star and Lord Vader’s Star Destroyer dropped out of hyperspace. Vader was able to disable the Alliance flagship, while the Death Star targeted the base on Scarif. Krennic found himself dying by the same machine he had spent his life building. Jyn and Cassian found themselves unable to escape in time. So, they took comfort in knowing they would die giving the Rebellion a chance to fight back.
Disabled, cornered, and out of time, the Rebels scrambled to download the data files onto a data card and escape the Empire. In their retreat, a few rebels were trapped when an airlock door was jammed. Trapped, the Rebels fought back, but stoop no chance against their opponent: Lord Vader himself.
A Rebel soldier was able to pass the data card through a crack in the doorway, and they were able to escape aboard the Tantive IV as it pulled away from the Rebel flagship. Now in the hands of Princess Leia Organa, the Death Star plans provided a new hope in the hearts of the Rebel Alliance.
The Turning of the Tide
After escaping the Battle of Scarif, the Tantive IV was captured by Lord Vader and Princess Leia taken captive. However, she was able to hide the Death Star plans in a small astromech droid named R2-D2. R2 and his companion droid, C-3PO managed to escape capture aboard an escape pod. The droids crash landed on Tatooine where they were captured by Jawa’s and sold to Owen Lars. Owen gave responsibility of the droids to his nephew, Luke Skywalker. After accidentally viewing part of a message meant for General Obi-Wan Kenobi, Luke begins to be intrigued by how the droids got to the planet.
After R2 escapes in the middle of the night, Luke and 3PO set out to find him. They are ambushed by Tusken Raiders, but saved by Luke’s friend, Ben Kenobi. Ben reveals that he is the Obi-Wan that Princess Leia spoke of in her message. Back at his home, Ben tells Luke of his father and how he was a member of the Jedi Order and fought alongside Obi-Wan during the Clone Wars. Obi-Wan gives Luke his father’s lightsaber and asks him to venture with him to Alderaan. Luke initially turns down the offer, but once he has seen that the Empire has destroyed his home, he turns to the only person he has left and joins Obi-Wan in his mission to Alderaan.
Manifesto of Domination
Held captive aboard the Death Star, Princess Leia is interogated in attempts to reveal the location of the Rebel Base. While she is able to withstand their methods, the Empire does not give in so easily. As an ultimatum, the Empire threatens to destroy her home planet of Alderaan if she does not provide them with the information they require.
Leia ultimately gives in and reveals the base to be located on Dantooine. Grand Moff Tarkin is pleased with his ability to break the Princess, though to ensure her devastation of being broken, he orders to have her planet destroyed anyways. Princess Leia looks on in horror as her home-world is destroyed in a matter of seconds by the Death Star’s powerful super-laser.
A Daring Rescue
Obi-Wan and Luke manage to find transport aboard a ship named the Millennium Falcon, piloted by the smuggler Han Solo and his co-pilot, Chewbacca. They all narrowly escape Tatooine as the Empire tries to halt their leave. Once they drop out of lightspeed, they are met with a harrowing sight. The planet of Alderaan is nowhere to be found. In it’s place is a debris field spread across the stars. Looking for any sign of life, they find a small moon and begin making their way towards it. However, it turns out that the moon is the Death Star and they are caught in it’s tractor beam. Having no choice but to hide, Solo jettisons the cargo and they all hide in secret cargo hatches.
Once aboard the Death Star, Luke and Han disable two Stormtroopers and take their armor. They use Chewbacca as a prison to sneak him in while Obi-Wan carefully follows. Once they find out where they really are, Luke convinces Han to rescue the princess. Obi-Wan tells them that he will disable to tractor beam while they grab Leia.
Once they arrive in Leia’s cell-block, Han and Luke set off the alarms and take over the console. Han tries to blow the scuffle off with Imperial security, but can’t convince them not to send reinforcements. Now compromised, Luke and Han break the princess out and escape into a trash compactor.
Obi-Wan has manged to find his way through the battle station, and disable’s the tractor beam. Meanwhile, Darth Vader tracks him down and lures him into a duel. In the trash compactor, Luke, Han, Leia, and Chewbacca find themselves trapped as the machine activates. At the last second though, R2 is able to remotely shut it down. The four escape and make their way back to the hanger.
While escaping, they manage to create quite the attention, but Obi-Wan’s duel with Vader distracts the Empire long enough for Luke and the others to escape. Obi-Wan then sacrifices himself to ensure their survival. Once free of the Death Star, the crew find themselves under attack by Imperial fighters. Luke and Han manage to fight them off, and Leia safely guides them to Yavin IV, where they rendezvous with the Alliance High Command.
The Battle of Yavin
Now that they finally have the Death Star plans, the Alliance quickly regroups and prepares their fighters for a sabotage the battle-station. Luke joins the Alliance as Red 5, but Han and Chewbacca plan to just take their winnings and leave.
The Empire tracked the Millennium Falcon to Yavin IV and begins preparations to destroy the Rebels once and for all. The Rebels launch their strike force and hope for the best.
Initial attempts at the attack run prove futile. Many Rebel fighters fall disappear as the Empire fights back with their entire might. In a last ditch effort, Luke Skywalker pilots his X-wing down the trench run, growing ever nearer to his target. He loses his wing-men as Darth Vader himself joins the skirmish. Luke, while ever so close to his target, is caught in Vader’s cross-hairs when Han and Chewbacca come to the rescue and are able to distract Vader long enough for Luke to reach the exhaust port. Luke, Han, and what’s left of the Alliance fighters retreat to a safe distance as the Death Star destructs in an enormous fireball.
A Newfound Spark & All Out War
With the Death Star destroyed, the Alliance rejoices in their first major victory against the Empire. The galaxy has now seen that they are more than just a loose, insubordinate militia. They stand for the freedom of the peoples of the galaxy and act not out of terrorism, but for a life of standards that far exceeds that which the Empire offers.
For the Empire, their patience has run out. They see no choice but war. The Rebels have done the unthinkable and have actually outmatched the Empire’s flagship super-weapon. They know they can no longer view the Alliance in the same light. By whatever means, Mothma has managed to create a credible threat to the Empire, and it’s time to treat it that way. If war is what the Rebel’s want, then that is exactly what they are going to get.