The Aggressive ReConnaissance-170 starfighter, also known as the ARC-170 starfighter and Advanced Recon fighter, was a heavy starfighter that saw widespread use by the Republic Navy throughout the Clone Wars.
The ARC-170 was jointly produced by Incom and Subpro Corporation. Like their other starfighter designs of its time, such as the lighter Z-95, and the heavier PTB-625, and NTB-630, the ARC-170 had a narrow spaceframe flanked by large engines. The ARC-170 also possessed an S-foil system, which helped to radiate heat, something that aided the fighter's shielding. This also provided additional stability during atmospheric flight.
Using its front deflector shield projectors to disperse heat generated from air resistance, the ARC-170 could reach supersonic speeds in atmospheric flight .
The ARC-170 was a departure from other starfighter designs of the Clone Wars era. Fighters such as the Alpha-3 Nimbus and the Eta-2 Actis were built to be small, fast, and maneuverable, at the cost of heavy weapons, shields, and hyperdrives. On the other hand, the ARC-170 was large, rugged, and capable of long independent operations.
The ARC-170 were typically deployed from Venator-class Star Destroyers, and were often sent on dangerous scout missions and raids deep in enemy territory. To allow the ARC-170 to perform these missions, the fighter was equipped with a Class 1.5 hyperdrive, and its nose was filled with powerful sensors, scanners, and jammers.
The ARC-170 carried enough consumables for five days of operation. However, the supplies and additional equipment had a price and the ARC-170 was quite slow. Durable armor and shielding, as well as two tail guns, helped the ARC-170 to survive when surrounded by swarms of smaller, faster enemy fighters, although it remained vulnerable to enemy anti-fighter guns.
The ARC-170 possessed powerful weaponry. It carried six proton torpedoes, and its wingtip-mounted medium laser cannons were unusually large for a starfighter. ARC-170s were often used as the heavy-hitters in strike forces, escorted by V-wings and Eta-2s.
The ARC-170 was crewed by three clones: a pilot, a forward gunner who operated the wingtip-mounted lasers, and a tail gunner who operated the rear-mounted cannons. The fighter also carried an astromech droid to perform onboard repairs and navigation. It was also possible for the pilot to operate the wingtip laser cannons if a co-pilot wasn't available.
The ARC-170 that shot down Plo Koon's Delta-7 Aethersprite-class light interceptor during Order 66 was kitted out to display information on its cockpit display screen using an unidentified script.
- "For months, every hour of our downtime was spent in the simulator, preparing for the time we would face our enemies from the cockpit of a 170. Finally the day came to earn our wings."
- ―Unnamed 501st stormtrooper
Originally introduced and adopted by the Republic shortly before the Clone Wars, ARCs were used fairly extensively during the late Clone Wars. During the Battle of Malastare, a squadron of ARC fighters escorted a squadron of BTL-B Y-wings carrying the electro-proton bomb and provided cover against AATs by strafing enemy ground formations. They were also used in the Defense of Kamino and later in a rescue mission to Lola Sayu. Shortly before the Battle of Coruscant, a squadron of ARCs provided cover for Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker on Tythe, but were mostly destroyed.
During the Battle of Coruscant, Clone Flight Squad Seven (operating with ARC-170s) covered for Kenobi and Skywalker as they made their way to the Invisible Hand. Although Squad Seven suffered many casualties, they allowed the two Jedi to successfully board the ship and rescue Supreme Chancellor Palpatine. Large numbers of ARC-170s were destroyed by droid tri-fighters in the battle.
Later, after Palpatine issued Order 66, ARC-170s flying over the skies of Cato Neimoidia under the command of Clone Captain Jag turned on Jedi Master Plo Koon. The ARC-170 squadron fired upon his Delta-7 starfighter, destroying the fighter's engines. Plo Koon could not regain control of his ship and plunged to his death as he and what remained of the forward part of the fighter crashed into a building on one of Cato Neimoidia's bridge-cities.
Several years after the Declaration of a New Order, the ARC-170s of Green Squadron were deployed from a Star Destroyer. They took part in the second portion of the Shrouded Offensive at Ostor. They strafed the city shield, but were ambushed by followers of the rogue clone trooper Kaddak in V-19 Torrent starfighters. The attackers were fought off, but quickly disappeared. Vader led the squadron back to cover the Star Destroyer. After Commander Hock Malsuum disabled the shield, the ARC-170s attacked the city, leaving it in ruins.
During the Galactic Civil War, ARC-170s could be found in both Imperial and Rebel fleets, where they were considered elite craft. As with all craft commissioned by the new Empire, ARC-170s were henceforth given the standard 'Imperial gray' color scheme, doing away with the variety of colorful markings that military vessels bore to identify their squadron affiliations with during the Clone Wars. Incom would go on to produce the T-65 X-wing starfighter, the successor to the ARC-170.
One old ARC-170 was found in an old secret hangar of the Rebel Alliance on the planet Dathomir. The Wookiees Imarrra and Orrekazzapirr took this ARC-170 after they had been freed from the Imperial prison facility and managed to punch a hole through the Imperial blockade around the planet.
Queen Kylantha of Naboo also owned several old ARC-170s. Her personal ship technicians had rehauled a few of them and turned them into formidable fighters again. She gave one to an adventurer as a token of appreciation for helping the Wookiees Imarrra and Orrekazzapirr escape from captivity.
Behind the scenesEdit
The ARC-170 was named after "ART-170," the title of the artwork form by concept artist Ryan Church that inspired the finalized design. Originally, it was referred to simply as a "clone fighter" in the script for Revenge of the Sith.
The joint development of the ARC-170 by Incom and Subpro Corporations seems to contradict a HoloNet News report that claims the companies severed their partnership shortly before the onset of the Clone Wars. This issue may possibly be retconned by the fact that most of the design for the ship took place before the split. Even so, it was released as an Incom/Subpro design, and it is extremely unusual for design credit to continue to be shared between companies who have broken off relations.
In Star Wars: Battlefront II, the ARC-170 fighter is considered a medium starfighter, and equivalent to a T-65 X-wing starfighter. The game also only allows one individual to board it, rather than three to fill all the positions.
In Labyrinth of Evil, the ARC-170 is stated to be equipped with multiple missile launchers. This, however, may be attributed to General Grievous' limited knowledge of the vehicles at the time, as the ships are described from his viewpoint.
In the Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith The Visual Dictionary, the starfighter was said to have a projectile cannon above their wing mounted laser cannons.
In 2005, LEGO released an ARC-170 set, which included three clone pilots (which oddly had V-wing pilot uniforms; this was due to technical limitations, however) and R4-D5. A strange thing about this set is that it had only one rear laser cannon. LEGO released another ARC-170 in 2010, which is more accurate in depicting the fighter (and pilots) and includes one standard clone pilot, Captain Jag, Kit Fisto and R4-P44. An Episode 3 Collectors Set (set 65771) was released in 2005. In the set was an ARC-170, a droid Tri-Fighter, a buzz droid, three clone pilots, R4-D5, an Episode 3 LEGO poster and a CD-ROM "From the LEGO Vaults."
In the Clone Wars episode The Zillo Beast, the ARC-170 squadron escorting the Y-Wings that drop the electro-proton bomb during the course of the episode have the same engine noise as the X-Wings in the Original Trilogy. This is probably implemented to highlight that the ARC-170 is the precursor to the X-Wing.
- LEGO Star Wars: The Video Game
- LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga
- LEGO Star Wars: The Quest for R2-D2
- LEGO Star Wars: Revenge of the Brick
- Star Wars Battlefront: Renegade Squadron
- LEGO Star Wars III: The Clone Wars
- LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga
- Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith Incredible Cross-Sections (First identified as ARC-170 starfighter and Aggressive ReConnaissance starfighter)
- "Guide to the Grand Army of the Republic"—Star Wars Insider 84
- Star Wars Battlefront II: Prima Official Game Guide
- "Order 66: Destroy All Jedi"—Star Wars Insider 87
- Star Wars: Complete Cross-Sections
- Starships of the Galaxy, Saga Edition
- The Force Unleashed Campaign Guide
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Star Wars Galaxies Trading Card Game – Squadrons Over Corellia (Card: ARC-170 Flight Suit)
- Star Wars Galaxies Trading Card Game – The Nightsister's Revenge (Card: ARC-170)
- Star Wars: The Official Starships & Vehicles Collection 35 (First identified as Aggressive ReConnaissance-170 starfighter)
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars: The Complete Season Three
- The Essential Guide to Warfare
- Star Wars: The Ultimate Visual Guide: Updated and Expanded
- Stay on Target
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 Star Wars: Complete Cross-Sections
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6
- ↑ Star Wars Battlefront: Renegade Squadron
- ↑ Star Wars Battlefront II: Prima Official Game Guide
- ↑ Hasbro Titanium Series ARC-170 packaging
- ↑ - The Latest News and Pictures from the World of Toys - February 2010 Hasbro Star Wars Q&A (Part 2)
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 The Essential Guide to Warfare
- ↑ Crimson Empire III: Empire Lost 1
- ↑ Millennium Falcon
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 12.6 Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith Incredible Cross-Sections
- ↑ Hasbro Star Wars TITANIUM SERIES Die Cast ARC-170 Vehicle #18592 - Product Detail
- ↑ Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Zillo Beast"
- ↑ Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "ARC Troopers"
- ↑ Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Citadel Rescue"
- ↑ 17.0 17.1 Labyrinth of Evil
- ↑ Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Cry of Shadows
- ↑ Star Wars Galaxies
- ↑ 20.0 20.1 Star Wars Galaxies: Rage of the Wookiees
- ↑ Star Wars: Battlefront II