The A-series assassin droid was a type of advanced battle droid deployed by the Confederacy of Independent Systems during the Clone Wars. It was one of the more advanced and elite models of combat automaton used by the Separatists, and it should not be confused with the more basic battle droid assassin.
At 2.4 meters tall, A-series assassin droids were quite taller than Humans, and somewhat resembled B2 super battle droids in size and physique. They had an angular humanoid chassis, and lean faces, dominated by four red photoreceptors beneath a sharp, swept-back crest.
Although their primary function was the assassination of specific targets, these droids typically fought in sizeable teams, overpowering their targets with firepower and combat skill rather than stealth. They seem to have been used sparingly, and on both their recorded front-line deployments, they were sent against groups of Jedi at the direct command of the most senior Separatist commanders.
Assassin droids could use a wide range of weapons. All apparently carried a blaster at the left shoulder, but this usually served as a backup to their other armaments. The most basic model apparently used a hand-held blaster, but some of the droids on Jabiim carried a fixed blaster under either wrist, while the group at Phindar used a variety of weapons, including a flechette, sonic detonator launchers, flamethrowers, hard-sound guns, hand-held tractor beam projectors, and apparently, vibroblades.
Though it was claimed that they were created under the aegis of the Trade Federation, their origin actually predates the organization. The A-series was created by Anx scientist Pollux Poi, who was hired by the Shell Hutts to create an assassin droid to attack the Gejalli kajidic. The Gejalli sent Dashade Shadow Killers after Poi, who fled to Kashyyyk. For twenty years, the A-series served as Poi's bodyguards, stopping the Dashade from killing their creator. After Poi died of natural causes shortly after the conclusion of the Great Sith War, the remaining assassin droids found a piece of Rakatan technology which advanced them further. They went to the Gree Enclave, and were hired out as a group of assassins. When Count Dooku traveled to the Gree Enclave, he purchased the droids, knowing that they would be useful in the coming war.
A group of assassin droids was dispatched to the Battle of Jabiim by Count Dooku, modified for operations on the rain-drenched planet, where they fought alongside the Nimbus commandos under the direct command of Alto Stratus. Later in the war, Asajj Ventress carried eighteen assassin droids aboard her personal starfighter, Last Call, which she deployed against Yoda and his team at Phindar Spaceport. A number of assassin droids were also attached to the Separatist field headquarters when it was located on Vjun, but it is not clear whether they were assigned permanently as guards, or if their deployment was a precaution adopted specifically because of Yoda's anticipated arrival.
Behind the scenesEdit
In Yoda: Dark Rendezvous, it is said that Anakin Skywalker's report from Jabiim described the standard model of assassin droid as using a hand-held blaster plus the shoulder-mounted weapon, but no assassin droids with this particular armament are shown in the relevant issues of Star Wars: Republic.
The units seen in The Battle of Jabiim all appear to carry fixed blasters beneath their wrists, while the only group encountered directly by Anakin, near the end of the battle, appear to be completely unarmed: the mountings for their shoulder cannon are visible, but the weapons themselves are absent.
It is thus not entirely certain whether Anakin's report of the basic assassin droid's weaponry is accurate.
Also, the idea that assassin droids can switch into a fast-moving wheel-like mode reminiscent of the droideka is only found in the novel, where they are described as having come "spinning" down a corridor before they "unpacked" into combat stances; no indication of such a capability is given in the comic, but the droids' crested heads are somewhat reminiscent of those of the droidekas' Colicoid creators, albeit mounted on a humanoid chassis.
- Star Wars: Republic: The Battle of Jabiim (First appearance)
- Yoda: Dark Rendezvous
- Star Wars Battlefront: Renegade Squadron
- Star Wars Battlefront: Elite Squadron
- The New Essential Guide to Droids
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- The Clone Wars Campaign Guide
- Galaxy at War