Think YOU Know the Imperial Star Destroyer? WRONG!!

Think YOU Know the Imperial Star Destroyer? WRONG!!

The Imperial I-class Star Destroyer was a model of Imperial-class Star Destroyer in the service of the Imperial Navy. A wedge-shaped capital ship, it bristled with weapons emplacements, assault troops, boarding craft, and TIE line starfighters. In the era of the Galactic Empire, its command bridge was staffed by the finest crewmen in the navy.

At first, Star Destroyers were deployed to sectors and systems caught in the aftermath of the Clone Wars, where they would crush any signs of sedition. During the Galactic Civil War the Destroyer’s role changed to hunting down high value Rebel targets and bases. They fought in notable battles such as the Battle of Hoth and the Battle of Endor. The Imperial II-class Star Destroyer was a derivative of the Imperial I-class.

The Imperial-class Star Destroyers were the technological successors of the Venator-class Jedi cruisers used by the naval forces of the Galactic Republic during the Clone Wars. After the Republic was turned into the Empire at the end of the Clone Wars, the self-anointed Galactic Emperor Sheev Palpatine decreed a massive military buildup. To meet interstellar defense needs, the great shipyards of the galaxy were fired up during the Clone Wars and remained lit well into the Age of the Empire. The enormous construction facilities at Kuat, Corellia, Ringo Vinda, Fondor, and elsewhere were converted from civilian graving docks into military starports capable of churning out Imperial-class Star Destroyers. Building upon the strengths of the Jedi cruisers, the bigger Imperial-class vessels became one of the most instantly recognizable symbols of the Imperial might, and were often titled intimidating names such as Lawbringer, Relentless, and Devastator.

Initially, the new Star Destroyers were deployed to sectors and systems that had once been beyond the reach of Republic law, where they would subjugate them and crush any signs of resistance or rebellion. Imperial Star Destroyers became symbols of this new order. Citizens weary of chaos and war cheered the sight of these giant dagger-shaped warships, while pirates and slavers quailed at the thought of confronting them. But a few citizens wondered if the imposition of Imperial law was worth the freedoms lost.

Easily becoming the most recognizable symbol of Imperial power, the Imperial-class further demonstrated its tactical versatility by protecting galactic commerce and bolstering Imperial-backed governments. Many admirals, Grand Moffs, ISB agents and senior Imperial commanders utilized these ships as their personal command ship, with the ship’s officer often being as intimidating as the ship itself—whose shadow alone could bring results. At the peak of the Empire, over 25,000 Imperial Star Destroyers were in existence, with the Empire’s primary source of Star Destroyers and Destroyer-equipped shipyards located at the industrial manufacturing center of Kuat. Ultimately, these giant craft became the backbone of the Imperial Navy, hunting down Rebel task forces, blockading undisciplined worlds and serving as launch bases for planetary assaults.

Eventually, the Imperial I-class Star Destroyer would be replaced by the Imperial II-class Star Destroyer. The Devastator was the last of the Imperial I-class Star Destroyers to lumber out of the Kuat Drive Yards before the facility began production on the Imperial II-class, although it was later upgraded to compete with these more advanced warships.

The Imperial-class would ultimately see service in the First Order‘s Navy thirty years after the Battle of Endor, and would be regarded as a highly respected ship, with many of its design flaws rectified with the construction of the Resurgent-class Star Destroyer, a newer, more powerful vessel based on the Old Empire’s dreaded warships. 35 years after the Battle of Yavin, the Sith Eternal used Xyston-class Star Destroyers. These Star Destroyers were based directly on the design of the Imperial-I-class Star Destroyer, with the primary exception being that the Xyston-class was armed with a planet-killing weapon.