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The BTL Y-wing starfighter was a series of multi-role starfighter-bombers manufactured by Koensayr Manufacturing. Notable models included the single-pilot BTL-A4 Y-wing assault starfighter/bomber and the two-seat BTL-B Y-wing and BTL-S3, which had room for a gunner or passenger.

HistoryEdit

The Clone WarsEdit

BTL-B Y-wing starfighters[1] entered service with the Republic Navy as early as 22 BBY. Early models had a transparent bubble turret for the onboard gunner, and were mainly designed as bombers.

Kaliida NebulaEdit

Btlbywing

Shadow Squadron departs for its attack on the Malevolence.

Shadow Squadron, a unit of clone trooper pilots, flew Y-wing bombers in the Battle of the Kaliida Nebula under the command of Jedi General Anakin Skywalker, Jedi General Plo Koon, and Jedi Commander Ahsoka Tano. The Y-wings successfully destroyed Malevolence's ion cannon in the engagement. Out of an initial force of 12 Y-wing bombers, six were lost in the assault.[3]

RylothEdit

Y-wings ryloth

Y-wings proved invaluable in breaking the Separatist blockade around Ryloth.

Y-wings participated in the Battle of Ryloth, in which they broke the planetary blockade imposed by the Confederacy of Independent Systems.[8] They also participated in atmospheric operations, and at least one crashed outside the Syndulla residence. Hera Syndulla rescued "Chopper" from the wrecked Y-wing, and Cham Syndulla decided to preserve the crash site as a memorial.[9][10] Several of Skywalker's Y-wings destroyed Separatist Hyena-class bombers that were tasked with destroying Lessu after the Separatist withdrawal from the capital.[11]

MalastareEdit

Malastare EP bomb run

Republic starfighters prepare to drop an electro-proton bomb at Malastare.

In 21 BBY, Y-wings participated in the Battle of Malastare, notably dropping an Electro-proton bomb on the Separatist Droid Army and inadvertently awakening the last surviving Zillo Beast. The battle ended with a joint Republic/Dug victory, with the Separatists driven off the planet and the Dugs signing a treaty granting the Republic access to its fuel reserves.[12]

GeonosisEdit

BTL-B Y-wing rear

Republic Y-wings depart to attack Geonosian gun emplacements at the Second Battle of Geonosis.

In 21 BBY, Republic Y-wings bombed Separatist anti-aircraft cannons at the Second Battle of Geonosis, allowing Jedi Generals Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, and Ki-Adi-Mundi to land at Point Rain. Y-wings also defended Admiral Wullf Yularen's command ship from attack by Geonosian Nantex-class territorial defense starfighters and assisted the defense of Kenobi's position.[13]

KaminoEdit

Y-wings kamino

Y-wings attack Separatist transports at Kamino.

Republic Y-wings joined Aggressive ReConnaissance-170 starfighters and V-19 Torrent starfighters in the Battle of Kamino, making bombing runs on Separatist transports. These transports, unknown to the clone pilots, carried Trident-class assault ships, which landed in the ocean below and deployed aqua droids to Tipoca City. Separatist forces were forced to withdraw after the 501st Legion and 212th Attack Battalion mounted a counteroffensive against the overextended droids.[14]

SullustEdit

Republic Y-wings saw action at the Battle of Sullust, engaging Separatist starfighters and conducting bombing runs on their capital ships. Darth Sidious ordered Count Dooku to kill Asajj Ventress in the battle, leading to a Separatist withdrawal and a Republic victory.[15]

Patitite PattunaEdit

In 20 BBY, Republic Y-wings mounted a failed defense of Jedi General Adi Gallia's flagship at the Battle of Patitite Pattuna. Astromech droid R2-D2 and protocol droid C-3PO escaped the doomed Star Destroyer aboard a Y-wing, and crashed on Patitite Pattuna's surface. After repairing their ship, the duo made a quick side-trip to Balnab in search of power, but were forced to abandon the ship. Within hours, the Republic mounted a rescue of Adi Gallia and recovered the droids, who had been picked up by Weequay pirates and taken prisoner by the Separatists.[16]

UmbaraEdit

DoU Oddball Bombing Run

Y-wings about to make an explosive delivery to Umbaran troops

Y-wings participated in the Battle of Umbara, destroying Separatist frigates guarding the planet and dropping ordnance on Umbaran Militia personnel who had ambushed the 501st Legion.[17] They also took part in atmospheric combat operations, engaging Vulture-class starfighers and droid tri-fighters in air-to-air combat.[18] The campaign ended with a decisive Republic victory and the execution of the traitorous Jedi General Pong Krell.[19]

The NegotiatorEdit

Republic Y-wings mounted a failed defense of Kenobi's flagship, the Negotiator, after it fell under attack by Separatist warships. The Separatist victory prevented the Republic's involvement in the rescue of Tano, who had been taken abducted by Weequay pirates in of the Florrum system. Her rescue fell instead to a group of six younglings.[20]

AnaxesEdit

Y-wings anaxes

Gold Squadron operated Y-wings at Anaxes.

In 19 BBY, Gold Squadron used Y-wing bombers to attack Separatist anti-aircraft cannons stationed at the Anaxes assembly complex during the Battle for Anaxes. The campaign ended with a Republic victory, the death of Admiral Trench, and the destruction of all Separatist forces deployed to the planet.[21]

Age of the EmpireEdit

Soon after the formation of the Galactic Empire in 19 BBY, a small, unorganized rebellion against Imperial rule began to take shape. Secretly supported by influential Senators like Bail Organa and Mon Mothma, the various rebel cells operated whatever kinds of vehicles they could acquire. Y-wings, having been relegated to planetary defense duties, were popular craft for the rebels because of its built-in hyperdrive and durability. Most Y-wings of this era either had the bubble turret replaced with one remotely-controlled from within the cockpit, or removed altogether in favor of a pair of fixed ion cannons in the case of the single-seat BTL-A4 Y-wing assault starfighter/bomber.[22][23]

YarmaEdit

Mission to Reklam Station

Phoenix Squadron steals a squadron's worth of Y-wing bombers.

In 2 BBY, Phoenix Squadron launched a mission to recover decomissioned Republic Y-wings from Reklam Station, an aerial scarpyard floating in the atmosphere of the planet Yarma. The mission ended in a rebel victory, with five Y-wings successfully stolen and Reklam station destroyed. Two of the initial force of seven were lost to Imperial fire, both piloted by Chopper under remote control. Although Commander Jun Sato originally intended for the Y-wings to enter service with Phoenix Squadron, the ships were instead to transferred to Jan Dodonna's unit on Yavin 4.[22]

Backbone of the RebellionEdit

Imperial cadets were trained to destroy Y-wing starfighters at Skystrike Academy on Montross. Sabine Wren and Wedge Antilles particpated in one such training prior to their first attempt to escape from Skystrike Academy alongside Derek Klivian and Rake Gahree.[24]

Archeon NebulaEdit

Archeon Nebula

BTL-A4 Y-wings escort the Ghost into the Archeon Nebula.

The Y-wings of Gold Squadron escorted the Chandrila Mistress, with former Imperial Senator Mon Mothma aboard, to a secret rendezvous at the with the Spectres aboard the Ghost. From there, the Ghost would transport Mothma to Dantooine for a meeting of high-level leaders of the rebellion.[23]

The Chandrila Mistress had been tracked by Imperial forces, and shortly after arrival it was attacked by an Arquitens-class command cruiser, a Gozanti-class cruiser, and several TIE/ln space superiority starfighters. Although Gold Squadron was able to destroy the TIEs and cruisers, Mothma and her crew were forced to evacuate the Chandrila Mistress and transfer to the Ghost. The Rebels escaped into hyperspace and traveled to the Archeon Nebula, which the Spectres had hoped would help conceal their movements from the Empire. Grand Admiral Thrawn predicted that they would do this, and dispatched a force of Imperial-class Star Destroyers and TIEs to destroy them, including a TIE/D Defender prototype piloted by Vult Skerris. The resulting skirmish in the Archeon Nebula resulted in a decisive rebel victory, but cost Gold Squadron three of its Y-wings.[23]

AtollonEdit

Y-wings atollon

Green Squadron attacks an Imperial-class Star Destroyer at the Battle of Atollon

At the Battle of Atollon, the Y-wings of Green Squadron attacked an Imperial-class Star Destroyer while Phoenix Squadron's RZ-1 A-wing interceptors engaged Imperial TIEs. Despite fierce Alliance resistance, the Rebels were forced to return to Chopper Base on the surface, and it was only the intervention of Clan Wren and the Bendu that allowed the Alliance forces to escape to Yavin. All but two Y-wings were destroyed in the assault.[25]

LothalEdit

In 1 BBY, a group of Y-wings and X-wings were jointly led under the command of the newly-promoted General Hera Syndulla to help liberate Lothal from Thrawn and the Seventh Fleet by attacking the fuel depot and Imperial Armory Complex in Capital City after breaking through the blockade and beating Skerris once and for all. However, after breaching the outer perimeter defenses in orbit of Lothal, the Y-wings and X-wings of the entire rebel attack force were shot down by Thrawn's second wave of TIE fighters. None of the Y-wing pilots or their astromechs survived the crash landings in Capital City.[26]

EaduEdit

In 0 BBY, Y-wings of the Massassi Group took part in a mission to Eadu, killing Galen Walton Erso and destroying an Imperial kyber crystal research facility.[27]

ScarifEdit

Gold One

Gold One, a Y-wing flown by Captain Jon Vander, checks in at the Battle of Scarif.

Within days, the Y-wings of Gold Squadron and Blue Squadron[28] were deployed to participate in the Battle of Scarif, the opening engagement of the Galactic Civil War. Blue Squadron, which had been split into two groups by the closure of the field aperature, assisted the other squadrons in defending the Alliance Fleet and attacking the Shield Gate. Gold Squadron led the attack run on the Shield Gate, and disabled a Star Destroyer with ion torpedos. The battle ended with the Alliance's successful acquisition of the Death Star plans at the cost of a significant portion of its forces.[27]

YavinEdit

Ywings trenchrun

Gold Squadron makes its attack run on the Death Star.

Shortly after the action at Scarif, a force of 30 starfighters (including 8 Y-wings of Gold Squadron) were deployed in a desperate attempt to destroy the Death Star at the Battle of Yavin. Captain Jon Vander led Dex Tiree and Davish Krail down the battle station's meridian trench on the first attack run, but all three were shot down by Darth Vader. The X-wing starfighters of Red Squadron made two additional attack runs, the second of which was successful. Luke Skywalker, a Force-sensitive Rebel pilot, used the Force to launch a pair of proton torpedoes into the station's thermal exhaust port, starting a chain reaction in the reactor core that destroyed the entire station. Only a single Y-wing, piloted by Evaan Verlaine, survived the assault.[4][2][29]

Anthan 1Edit

Y-wing anthan 1

Darth Vader brings down a Y-wing on Anthan 1.

In 0 ABY, Darth Vader and Inspector Thanoth embarked on a mission to the Anthan system to identify the perpetrators of the Son-tuul Pride robbery and recover its cargo of credits. As part of an attempt to bargain with the Imperials, an information broker known as the Ante disclosed the location of the Plasma Devils base of operations on Anthan 1. With this knowledge and the death of the Ante, Vader and Thanoth abandoned the chase and struck the Plasma Devils' base. During the Plasma Devils' attempts to evacuate, Vader singlehandedly brought down one of their Y-wings by throwing his lightsaber at the portside engine.[30]

Vrogas VasEdit

Amber Wing

Amber Wing attempts to kill Darth Vader at Vrogas Vas.

Gray Squadron's Y-wings saw action at the Battle of Vrogas Vas, attempting to kill Darth Vader. Using the Force to hurl debris from his crashed TIE at the bombers, the Sith Lord destroyed several and proved to be more than a match for the squadron.[31] Later in the battle, Leia Organa ordered the Y-wings of Amber Wing to bomb her position with the aim of killing Vader, but the wing was decimated by Commander Karbin's forces.[32]

TatooineEdit

At some point between 0 ABY and 3 ABY, a squadron of X-wings and Y-wings on patrol of the Arkanis sector located an Imperial listening station and requested that Saponza's Gang give them targets. The raid completely destroyed the base.[33][34]

EndorEdit

Y-wing endor

Red Two about to destroy a pair of TIE Interceptors

In 4 ABY, Y-wings participated in the Battle of Endor with numerous units including Gold Squadron, Gray Squadron, and Red Squadron. At least one, operated by Norra Wexley under the Gold Nine callsign, entered the superstructure of the Death Star II and led Imperial TIEs away from the Millennium Falcon. The surprise Rebel victory at Endor resulted in the death of Galactic Emperor Sheev Palpatine; the redemption of Anakin Skywalker; and the destruction of the Sith, second Death Star, and Super Star Destroyer Executor.[35][36]

Sterdic IVEdit

Y-wings cawa

Feral Group bombs an AT-AT walker.

Seventeen standard days after the Battle of Endor, the Y-wings of Feral Group participated in the Battle of Cawa City on the planet Sterdic IV, dropping bombs on Imperial All Terrain Armored Transport walkers. The battle ended with a decisive victory for the Alliance.[37]

NabooEdit

Y-wings naboo

Lando Calrissian's forces reinforce the Naboo/Alliance pilots.

At least three Y-wings participated in the battle of Naboo during Operation: Cinder under the command of General Lando Calrissian. The fighters engaged Imperial TIEs that had swarmed Leia Organa, Shara Bey, and Queen Sosha Soruna who had made an attempt to knock out Imperial weather-control satellites. The battle concluded with a rebel victory and the failure of Operation: Cinder in the area.[38]

AkivaEdit

Several standard months after the Battle of Endor, the New Republic deployed Y-wings to help the rebellion on Akiva overthrow its local Imperial government. The operation resulted in the capture of at least two high-ranking Imperial officials, the rescue of Captain Wedge Antilles, and the liberation of Akiva from Imperial rule.[36]

Hyborean MoonEdit

In 5 ABY, New Republic Y-wings participated in an attack on the Hyborean Moon with the objective of destroying an Imperial Security Bureau prison located there. The strike leveled the prison, but also destroyed adjacent buildings and killed an unknown number of civilians.[39]

JakkuEdit

Y-wings served with Phantom Squadron and the Tierfon Yellow Aces in the Battle of Jakku, the final battle of the Galactic Civil War.[40]

New Republic EraEdit

Y-wings had largely fallen out of military service by 28 ABY due to the age of their design. Despite this, the Amaxine warriors operated at least one Y-wing around this time, which attempted to thwart Organa's mission to Sibensko.[6] The Resistance also operated at least a single two-seat BTL-S3 in 34 ABY and deployed it on a mission to Spalex.[7]

CharacteristicsEdit

In the Clone War, Y-wings proved their worth to the Republic, taking part in several key battles against the Separatists. Despite their size, the two-seat starfighters were quite maneuverable, with clone trooper pilots routinely performing quick rolls while staying in formation. Their turrets and fixed guns allowed them to engage and destroy multiple targets simultaneously, making them effective in combat missions against enemy starfighters. Their heavy weapons payload allowed them to carry large amounts of ordnance, whether they be solid projectiles like proton torpedoes[3] or gravity weapons like the electro-proton bomb.[12] This versatility made them suitable for a number of mission profiles, whether it involved attacking enemy capital ships or bombing ground targets. They were, however, considered "buggy" in atmospheric operations.[9]

By 2 BBY, most Y-wings had had their engine nacelles and body panels stripped down to the bare minimum, giving them a skeletal appearance. They were considered old by many within the rebellion, but could still be effective against newer Imperial starships in the hands of a capable crew.[22][23] The speed and maneuverability of certain models, in particular the two-seat BTL-S3, was considered subpar, but they were still regarded as reliable and well-armed.[7]

Behind the scenesEdit

The BTL Y-wing starfighter first appeared in the now Legends novel Star Wars: From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker, the very first Star Wars product ever released. It was a novelization of the later canon film known at the time of its release as Star Wars.

In the novelization, the Y-wings that flew in the Battle of Yavin operated as part of Red Squadron, with the X-wings being part of Blue Squadron. Because of the limits of blue screen technology at the time, the Y-wing squadron was changed to Gold Squadron and the X-wings to Red Squadron.

Y-wings appeared in numerous other narrative media released between 1977 and 2014, most notably The Star Wars Holiday Special, the other two films of the Original trilogy, and The Clone Wars.

In the original release of Star Wars, the Y-wing starfighters were plastic models shot against blue screens with computer-controlled cameras. In later versions of the film released to theaters and home media, some shots have been removed and replaced with computer-animated ones.

A transparent turret was originally included in the design, but was removed when it was realized that blue screen technology was not yet advanced enough to composite correctly with the turret. The turrets, along with a lot of body paneling and the gunner's position, were added back in to the Y-wing's design on Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

On April 25, 2014, Lucasfilm Ltd. announced that the former Expanded Universe would be discontinued and rebranded as "Legends", and that it would be replaced with a new single-level canonicity system in which new releases were declared either canon or non-canon from the outset. Since the reboot, known to many fans as the Great Retcon, Y-wings have appeared in numerous narrative, promotional, and reference Star Wars products.

AppearancesEdit

SourcesEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 TwitterLogo @HolocronKeeper (Leland Chee) on Twitter. "@LelalMekha Fair to assume species names are the same unless you hear otherwise. Same goes for planets. And ship models." (screenshot)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Shadow of Malevolence"
  4. 4.0 4.1 Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
  5. Star Wars Battlefront
  6. 6.0 6.1 Bloodline
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Poe Dameron 17: War Stories, Part I
  8. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Storm Over Ryloth"
  9. 9.0 9.1 Rebels-mini-logo Star Wars Rebels – "The Forgotten Droid"
  10. Rebels-mini-logo Star Wars Rebels – "Hera's Heroes"
  11. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Liberty on Ryloth"
  12. 12.0 12.1 TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Zillo Beast"
  13. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Landing at Point Rain"
  14. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "ARC Troopers"
  15. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Nightsisters"
  16. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Nomad Droids"
  17. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Darkness on Umbara"
  18. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Plan of Dissent"
  19. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Carnage of Krell"
  20. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Bound for Rescue"
  21. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Unfinished Business"
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 Star Wars Rebels: Steps Into Shadow
  23. 23.0 23.1 23.2 23.3 Rebels-mini-logo Star Wars Rebels – "Secret Cargo"
  24. Rebels-mini-logo Star Wars Rebels – "The Antilles Extraction"
  25. Rebels-mini-logo Star Wars Rebels – "Zero Hour"
  26. Rebels-mini-logo Star Wars Rebels – "Rebel Assault"
  27. 27.0 27.1 Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  28. Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide
  29. Princess Leia, Part I
  30. Darth Vader 12: Shadows and Secrets, Part VI
  31. Vader Down, Part I
  32. Darth Vader 14: Vader Down, Part IV
  33. Star Wars: Commander
  34. In Kekit's Databank entry, it is stated that Saponza and his partner played an integral part in the campaign that liberated a Jawa clan from the Tusken Raiders. It also states that the plan was orchestrated by Jennica Pierce of the Rebel Alliance. This scenario does not occur if the player aligns with the Empire, so it can be deduced that Saponza's gang joined the Rebellion.
  35. Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi
  36. 36.0 36.1 Aftermath
  37. Shattered Empire, Part II
  38. Shattered Empire, Part III
  39. Aftermath: Life Debt
  40. Aftermath: Empire's End
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