- "I told you this victory was too easy. We never should have sent the ship back for supplies."
"It wasn't my idea to send the ship back."
"All right, men, second wave incoming."
"Rex, you and your men follow me."
"Cody, battle positions!"
- ―Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker argue while preparing for battle
The Battle of Christophsis took place at the planet Christophsis in 22 BBY, seven weeks into the Clone Wars. Seeking to gain control of the strategic world's resources, the Confederacy of Independent Systems' Droid Army, led by General Whorm Loathsom, invaded and seized Christophsis. Responding to a plea for help from the world's inhabitants, the Galactic Republic and the Jedi High Council dispatched Jedi Generals Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker and Admiral Wullf Yularen with a clone trooper contingent from the Grand Army of the Republic to liberate Christophsis. After penetrating Confederate Admiral Trench's massive naval blockade of the planet and delivering supplies to Senator Bail Prestor Organa's refugee camp on the surface via an experimental stealth ship, the Republic forces attempted to ambush the Confederate battle droid army from two towers in one of the plazas of the capital city, Crystal City. Acting on information from one of its spies, Clone Sergeant Slick, the Separatists foiled the Republic's attack. Despite the turn of events, the Jedi and clones managed to escape and retreated back to their base.
Alerted to the possibility of a spy amongst their men, Skywalker and Kenobi went to search for more information behind enemy lines while Clone Commander CC-2224 and Clone Captain CT-7567—nicknamed "Cody" and "Rex," respectively—stayed at the base to root out the agent. Upon arriving at the Confederacy base, Skywalker and Kenobi confronted the Dark Acolyte Asajj Ventress and discovered the presence of an invasion force in far greater strength than they had originally believed. Back at the Republic base, Slick was revealed to be the spy and sabotaged the Republic's weapons depot, destroying most of the Republic's supplies, before being apprehended by Rex and Cody. Raising the stakes with its full strength, the main body of Confederate troops launched an assault on the Republic forces. After several days, the Separatists were forced to retreat. When Loathsom mounted a second assault, his forces' advance was halted by the Republic's heavy cannons, and he and his droids pulled back to their base to set up a deflector shield to counter the Republic's artillery.
Yularen and the Republic fleet were driven away from Christophsis by the renewed Separatist blockade of the planet, but Skywalker's newly assigned Jedi Padawan, Ahsoka Tano, was able to land on the world. Loathsom and the Confederacy mounted yet another assault, this time advancing behind their shield, which effectively negated the clone artillery. While Kenobi, Rex, and 501st Legion troops defended the heavy cannons, Skywalker and Tano proceeded to sabotage the Confederacy's shield generator. After Kenobi pretended to surrender to Loathsom to gain time for his comrades to complete their mission, Skywalker and Tano were able to eliminate the shield. Yularen returned to the Christoph system with Jedi Grand Master Yoda and a fortified fleet and broke through the Separatist blockade, driving the enemy armada away from Christophsis. In addition, the Republic's renewed artillery usage proved instrumental in annihilating the Separatists in Crystal City. Kenobi captured Loathsom, and the Republic emerged victorious and landed further reinforcements to secure the victory.
Target of riches
- "You be listening to the voice of the Confederacy o' Independent Systems. Yer planet, it belongs to us now."
- ―Whorm Loathsom, to the people of Christophsis
In 22 BBY, seven weeks after the outbreak of the Clone Wars, the Confederacy of Independent Systems targeted the Outer Rim world of Christophsis. With the Confederacy and the Galactic Republic already embattled for control of crucial hyperlanes, Christophsis's strategic position on the Corellian Run would allow the Confederacy to cut off Republic forces from the Outer Rim, while at the same time providing a staging point for strikes on the planets Kamino, home to cloning production for the Grand Army of the Republic, and Rothana, the headquarters of Rothana Heavy Engineering, which provided for the Republic war machine. The Separatists hoped to gain control of the resource-rich world for its supply of crystals, which attracted them as a power source for weaponry. They also sought to capture or kill the prominent Republic Senator Bail Prestor Organa, who was on the planet with a city-based refugee camp as part of a behind-enemy-lines effort authorized by the Galactic Senate.
The infamous Admiral Trench led a Confederate Navy fleet to besiege Christophsis, blockading the planet with a massive flotilla over thirty warships strong. The Confederate General Whorm Loathsom then launched a planetary invasion, securing the surface with the Separatist Droid Army and additional forces from the Retail Caucus, a conglomerate within the Confederacy. Organa and his forces were subsequently trapped on the planet's surface and were cut off from the Republic's re-supply efforts. Several of the planet's native Christophsians attempted to defend themselves by mounting blaster attacks on the Separatist battle droids as they advanced through the planet's streets, but the resisters were unable to hold out against the Confederacy. Via a planet-wide holotransmission that obtained the Jedi Order's attention, Loathsom told the inhabitants of Christophsis that they were under Separatist rule and informed them that their planetary leadership had abandoned them. Loathsom additionally ordered the civilian populace to submit to the occupation and remain vigilant for Republic reprisals before ending the transmission.
- "Separatist forces have overrun our position, and we are out of food, water, and munitions. Our situation is desperate—"
- ―Bail Organa, in a transmission to Republic forces
Unable to defend themselves any longer, the beleaguered Christophsian citizens appealed directly to the Jedi High Council at the Jedi Temple for help. In response to their request and Organa's dire situation, the Council dispatched High Jedi General Obi-Wan Kenobi and Jedi General Anakin Skywalker to assist in disrupting the Separatist invasion and to mount a rescue mission to deliver Organa's relief supplies through the blockade. Because the Separatists were reportedly small in number, Skywalker and Kenobi were only equipped with a small team of clone troopers from the Grand Army of the Republic and expected to retake the planet with relative ease. Troops from the 13th Sector Army were provided for the campaign, in addition to forces from the 501st Legion.
On Kenobi's orders, Skywalker and the recently appointed Admiral Wullf Yularen set off for the Christoph system with a Republic Navy task force of Star Destroyers, with Kenobi and Marshal Commander CC-2224, nicknamed "Cody," preparing to follow behind in Kenobi's flagship, the Negotiator. Kenobi elected to bring along an experimental stealth ship, a prototype with cloaking capabilities. However, the Confederacy was preparing a larger army to seize Christophsis. Additionally, among the Republic troops was Clone Sergeant Slick, who, unbeknownst to his comrades, had developed a grudge against the Jedi by equating the clones' service to them with enslavement. Infuriated with what he perceived to be corruption, Slick began to pass inside information to the Dark Acolyte Asajj Ventress on Christophsis, and in return, he was given payment for his assistance.
The Republic's arrival
Offensive on the blockade
- "Master Kenobi better get here soon, or this is going to be one short rescue mission."
- ―Anakin Skywalker
Upon arrival at Christophsis, Skywalker,Yularen, and their fleet of three Venator-class Star Destroyers engaged the Separatist blockade in battle, despite a previous order from Kenobi not to. However, the Republic forces were quickly outnumbered by Trench's fleet, which was comprised of numerous Munificent-class star frigates, Lucrehulk-class battleships, and Trench's flagship, the Providence-class carrier/destroyer Invincible. From the Star Destroyer Resolute, Skywalker and Yularen contacted Organa, whose position had been overrun by Separatist forces; running low on food, water, and munitions, Organa and his men were close to being overwhelmed by the vast droid armies on the planet's surface. Organa's transmission was soon cut off just as another of Skywalker's cruisers was hit by enemy turbolaser fire. As the opposing sides continued to exchange heavy fire across the space above Christophsis, the Invincible advanced unopposed on the Resolute, and Yularen ordered all of the Resolute's forward shields to be activated just as the Separatist command ship released a full barrage of laser fire at the entire task force. Trench additionally targeted the Pelta-class supply ships, separating them from the escort cruisers that were protecting them.
One of the transports was picked off by the heavy fire and was blasted to bits by the Separatist armada.In response to the enemy offensive, Skywalker ordered his men to over-fire all reactors, intending to charge the Separatist commander, whose identity he was still unaware of. At that point, Kenobi and Cody arrived out of hyperspace aboard the Negotiator behind Skywalker's forces, staying closer to the moon of Christophsis. Despite being informed by TI-99, his T-series tactical droid, that the Resolute was not breaking off from its attack, Trench continued to hold his own ships in line and had his battle droid bridge crew intensify the Invincible's forward defectors. As the Resolute took more turbolaser fire, Skywalker and Yularen conferred with Kenobi through a holographic transmission. At the advice of his comrades, Skywalker agreed to regroup behind the moon and ordered the supply transports to break away first, with his own three Star Destroyers covering their escape. Skywalker's cruisers maneuvered around and took most of the enemy fire with their hulls, effectively protecting the supply ships and fleeing behind them. Recalling his orders to only blockade the planet, Trench, believing that he had won the first round of the battle, chose not to pursue the retreating Republic fleet and instead remained in orbit of Christophsis to wait for the Republic's imminent reprisal. To ready the Invincible for the enemy's inevitable return, Trench had his command ship's shields recycled and forward cannons reset to a full charge.
While the Republic fleet recuperated and waited for the next engagement to begin, Skywalker took a Nu-class attack shuttle to the Negotiator, where he met with Kenobi to see the new ship that the General had brought with him. After showing Skywalker the stealth ship prototype and its useful cloaking abilities, Kenobi stated that the craft was undetectable to scanners as far as they knew, but noted that this was essentially the ship's first real field test. Although Skywalker wanted to use the ship to sneak past the blockade and take the Separatist fleet out from behind, Kenobi instead intended for him to run a mercy mission down to Christophsis's surface to deliver supplies to Organa's headquarters. Despite his desire to openly engage and obliterate the Separatists, Skywalker agreed to execute this assignment. Back aboard the Resolute, Yularen, who had noticed a familiarity with the enemy's tactics during the morning's engagement, researched the markings on the Invincible and confirmed that it belonged to Trench, whom he had personally fought in the Battle of Malastare Narrows. Concerned by his findings, Yularen requested that Skywalker postpone his departure and joined his General on the Negotiator, where the stealth ship was being loaded with the relief supplies for Organa. Yularen reported his suspicions that the enemy commander was none other than Trench and, because he had seen the Admiral's work first-hand at Malastare, volunteered himself as a consort to Skywalker's mission; he believed that he could be of service to Skywalker during the inevitable encounter that they would have with Trench's cunning. Skywalker accepted Yularen's offer and welcomed him to his crew aboard the stealth ship.
A stealth mission
- "Well, we may be in luck then, Admiral. My orders are not to engage Trench, just to deliver supplies to Senator Organa."
"With all due respect, General, I do not believe we will have a choice in the matter. If it is indeed Trench, he will come for us."
- ―Anakin Skywalker and Wullf Yularen
With Clone Commander Blackout and trooper CT-1284, nicknamed "Spark"—the last of the stealth ship's crew—at their stations and ready for takeoff, the stealth ship powered up and prepared for departure. Skywalker piloted the ship out of the Negotiator's main hangar bay and toward the heavily armored Separatist fleet, engaging his craft's cloaking shield just as it came out from behind the moon. Remaining undetected by Trench and the rest of his blockade, Skywalker and Yularen slipped right past an ignorant Munificent-class frigate—with enough alarming closeness to leave Yularen worried about alerting the enemy to their presence. Conferring with his tactical droid aboard the Inevitable, Trench found that resistance on Christophsis was crumbling, and the droid offered his estimation that it would be a half rotation more before it was completely over. Intending to add some pressure on those who had been sent to rescue Organa, Trench dispatched his Hyena-class bombers to attack Organa's camp on the surface in order to draw his enemies out from behind the moon. The squadron of bombers, accompanied by fighter escort, launched from the Separatist fleet, and their path to the surface inadvertently headed them straight for Skywalker's stealth ship, despite Trench's continued unawareness of the craft.
The approaching bombers presented Skywalker with a tough decision: because he was unaware if the Separatists had learned of their presence, he was uncertain if the bombers were targeting the stealth ship or not. The Republic craft itself was armed with proton torpedoes and anti-aircraft cannons, but would have to de-cloak to use either weapons—and doing so would alert the Separatists to the ship if they had not yet been. Yularen noted that an offensive had to be mounted soon, if Skywalker decided to do so. As the diving bombers entered within 5,000 range, Skywalker elected to chance that the Confederacy was unaware of the stealth ship and thereby ordered his crew to stay cloaked, power the ship down, and let her drift. Despite Yularen's belief of the contrary, the bombers did not hit the stealth ship, zooming right by and rattling it but otherwise leaving it unscathed. However, Yularen pushed away the comforting revelation that the Separatists were oblivious to their presence and voiced his realization that the bombers were heading to bomb Organa's command center. The bombers did just that, releasing their munitions on Organa's camp in the city. With the Separatists approaching by air and by ground, Organa opened a transmission to Kenobi and stated that without reinforcements, there was little chance for survival. Kenobi then contacted Skywalker and told him to continue with his mission while he himself engaged Trench's fleet with the remaining ships of the task force. Both Yularen and Skywalker advised against this course of action; Yularen stated that Kenobi did not have the proper resources to openly engage Trench and asserted that it was a trap, while Skywalker affirmed that the proposed tactic simply would not be successful.
Believing that the stealth ship was in the best position to take out Trench, Skywalker, to Yularen's surprise, ordered four of the craft's proton torpedoes to be prepped, with the intention of going on the offensive and drawing Trench's attention away from the people of Christophsis and back to the Republic fleet. Skywalker additionally cut off Kenobi's transmission before he could continue to tell him to deliver Organa's supplies. Meanwhile, Trench found the Republic fleet's stagnancy unusual and mused over their intentions. He found out soon enough, as Skywalker brought his stealth ship around to get a clear shot at the Invincible. After disengaging his ship's cloaking shields, Skywalker ordered his crew to fire the volley of torpedoes at the bridge of the Invincible. The attack proved unsuccessful, as Trench was able to activate his command ship's powerful thermal shields in time to repel the blasts. Just as the stealth ship began to re-cloak, Trench fired four discord missiles at the enemy craft. Skywalker had his stealth pilot launch decoy flares and re-cloaked his ship, causing the missiles to hit the flares instead of the ship. However, Trench was not finished just yet. He ordered a large spread of lasers to be fired at the area where the stealth ship had just vanished, attempting to hit the craft with sheer numbers. Skywalker managed to evade the incoming barrage, avoiding destruction at Trench's hands. Skywalker's skills did not go unnoticed; despite the indications that he had missed, Trench surmised that he was facing a Jedi, as no clone pilot was skilled enough to avoid that many lasers.
Deciding to speak with the enemy, Trench patched himself over an open frequency and called out to his invisible enemy. Skywalker picked up the transmission and unhesitatingly accessed it, bearing witness to Trench as he goaded the Republic forces into attacking him and boasted that he had dealt with cloaked ships before. After he had ended his message, Trench was unsurprised with his tactical droid's calculation that the Jedi would not turn back as he requested; the Admiral theorized that the Jedi would attack once more. Meanwhile, Skywalker and Yularen were left puzzled with the revelation of Trench's experience with cloaked ships until Kenobi obtained records of Trench's battles. Kenobi reported that Trench had indeed faced such technology and had successfully hit them with tracking torpedoes; Skywalker theorized—correctly—that Trench had honed in on the ship's magnetic signature as a means of targeting them. Skywalker requested that Kenobi hold off his attack until Trench was destroyed before ending the transmission. After completing the necessary preparations, the stealth ship de-cloaked once more and fired four more torpedoes at the Invincible. While the torpedoes hit the Invincible's thermal shields and failed to do any damage, the bridge crew locked onto the stealth ship's magnetic signature and was able to track it. Forced to lower his shields in order to fire the tracking torpedoes, Trench had his tactical droid do just that and released the four-torpedo volley. With the bait taken, Skywalker began to pilot the stealth ship toward the Invincible.
With the torpedoes following at a close range, Skywalker had his ship's cloaking device deactivated and diverted all power to the engines. Skywalker headed the stealth ship straight for the Invincible's bridge, where Trench found that the shields could not be raised because they were still in recharge. Skywalker sped the stealth ship straight across the Invincible's hull, grazing it and leading the torpedoes straight into her bridge. Skywalker quickly made for the surface as the Invincible was torn apart by explosions along its spine, taking Trench and his bridge crew along with it. Issuing Skywalker a somewhat reluctant congratulations, Kenobi engaged the remainder of the Separatist fleet with the Negotiator while Skywalker and Yularen continued for the surface to deliver the relief supplies to Organa. The stealth ship landed at Organa's refugee camp, where the supplies were unloaded. Organa thanked Skywalker for saving a great many lives, and Yularen relayed his impressed views with the unusual Jedi General.
With Trench out of the way, the Separatist fleet was in disarray, and Kenobi pushed his fleet of seven Venator-class Star Destroyers forward to break the enemy blockade, which—in the absence of the Invincible—was now comprised of Munificent-class frigates, Lucrehulk-class battleships, and a Recusant-class light destroyer. Ordering all of his ships to fire at will, Kenobi launched V-19 Torrent starfighters and BTL-B Y-wing starfighters—led by a Jedi Knight who was piloting a Delta-7B interceptor—to combat the Separatists' Hyena-class bombers, Vulture droid starfighters, and droid tri-fighters. While the opposing capital ships exchanged heavy fire, the Jedi Knight wove through the battle and targeted one of the Lucrehulk-class battleships, fighting through the pursuing droid starfighters. Taking losses, the Separatist fleet began to retreat, and Kenobi, determined to break the blockade, had his forces target the Separatist command ships. At Kenobi's behest, the Jedi Knight who was with the starfighter forces executed an attack run on the Recusant-class light destroyer, destroying the cruiser. The remnants of Trench's fleet were soon in full retreat, and Kenobi sent support ships down to Christophsis's surface to assist in the relief efforts. With the Jedi's securing of a "rare Republic victory" over the Separatist space forces, the Republic detachment prepared to mount an assault on the Separatist army in the planet's capital city, Chaleydonia, more commonly known as Crystal City.
- "Obi-Wan, what's going on?"
"We're cut off. The droids are onto us!"
- ―Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi
Kenobi and Cody joined Skywalker; Clone Captain CT-7567, nicknamed "Rex;" and the rest of the Republic forces on the surface, while Yularen eventually returned to the fleet as its acting commander in the continuing struggle against the Separatist blockade. After the Republic established a networked base on the planet, Sergeant Slick and his clone platoon were sent to perform a reconnaissance of the planet in order to locate a strategical ambush site from which to attack the Separatist droid forces. Slick and his men found an ideal location: the adjacent North- and South-facing towers in Crystal City. As they returned to the Republic base, the clone troopers came across a squad of B1 battle droids that was attempting to clear one of the city's main boulevards of Christophsians. When the droids discovered a crippled refugee and discussed killing him, the clones intervened and eliminated the droids. However, once he and his men returned to the base, Slick secretly transmitted the Republic's intended strategy of attack to Ventress. With Slick's information, Ventress and Loathsom were able to devise a plan to thwart the Republic's trap, thus ensuring that they would stay a step ahead of the Jedi and clones.
Kenobi, Cody, and Slick stationed their men in the South tower, while Skywalker and Rex became based in the parallel North tower. While Confederate B1 battle droids and Armored Assault Tanks passed through the plaza below, Kenobi's men set up several repeating blaster cannons, ready to ambush the advancing enemy troops. As the clones kept watch on the droids, the column of droids—unexpectedly to the Republic—split into two. B1 battle droids took a turbolift up to the level of the South tower where Kenobi's forces were based and ambushed them, surrounding and converging on the clones. The backfired ambush made it apparent to Kenobi that their tactic had been compromised. Watching the transpiring events from the North tower and confirming the situation over comlink with Kenobi, Skywalker contacted clone pilot Hawk and ordered an evacuation from the South tower. Skywalker then cut through the window overlooking the plaza with his lightsaber and used the Force to blast a hole through it, enabling his men to fire their blaster rifles' grappling hooks across to the South tower. Skywalker, Rex, and the clone troopers crossed the divide and sustained minimal casualties from the battle droids that opened fire on them from the plaza below.
Skywalker, Rex, and their troopers joined Kenobi in the South tower and cut off the battle droids that were attempting to attack Kenobi from behind, and Kenobi threw a blaster cannon at the droids with the Force and temporarily halted their advance. The Jedi and clones entered a turbolift and proceeded to evacuate from the roof of the tower, where the Separatist droids pursued them in alternate turbolifts. As the clone troopers provided covering fire for their Jedi Generals to assault the droids at a closer proximity, the T-series tactical droid TJ-55 arrived on the roof with more droid troops. Presently, Hawk's LAAT/i gunship arrived and hovered near the roof of the tower. The Republic forces began to board the craft and backed into the gunship while continually focusing their blaster fire on the droids. In a last act before retreating, trooper Gus attacked TJ-55 and ripped the droid's head off, taking the severed cranial unit onto the gunship. The Republic forces vacated the ambush site and returned to the base, where they contemplated their foiled ambush. Cody and Rex analyzed the tactical droid's head in the base's control center and accessed its memory banks. However, the droid only confirmed that the Confederacy had been aware of the Republic's plan and stopped processing before it could reveal any more information or shed more light on the matter.
When the clone officers reported their findings to the Jedi, Skywalker suggested that a breach in security systems had been the source for the Confederacy's acquisition of the plans. Kenobi himself went so far as to suspect that there was a spy among the Republic forces and believed that action behind enemy lines was necessary to uncover information. Before leaving with Skywalker to investigate behind Separatist lines, Kenobi ordered Cody and Rex to keep the mission confidential and remain behind to find and apprehend the spy. Using a still-active comlink in the control center, Slick was able to eavesdrop on the entire conversation. Rex spotted Slick in the hallway and ordered the spy to stop, although Slick was too far away to be recognized. Slick fled, and Cody and Rex pursued him but lost his trail. However, because the spy's route through the base's labyrinthine hallways led to the mess hall, Cody and Rex deduced that the Separatist agent had definitely gone there and entered it themselves. The pair discovered that the only people there were their clone brothers. Deducing that the spy was one of their brethren, both officers returned to the base's communications center and continued their investigations. Through the astromech droid R2-D2, a number of external communications were discovered, taking place every few days in an irregular pattern. The wavelength was traced to a terminal in Slick's barracks. Cody and Rex decided to individually interrogate Slick's men under the belief that one of them was the spy.
- "My loyal informant let me know you were coming."
"Well, then, we thank you for your hospitality."
- ―Asajj Ventress and Obi-Wan Kenobi
Under the cover of night, Skywalker and Kenobi approached the Confederacy base—where the main Separatist invasion force was landing and preparing to march on the city—on BARC speeders through the streets of the crumbled Crystal City. The two Jedi noticed an increasing number of battle droids observing them, but because the droids were not attempting to stop them, the pair deduced that they were heading into a trap. Upon arrival at the base, Skywalker and Kenobi were greeted by the hooded figure of Asajj Ventress, and all three adversaries ignited their lightsabers on sight of each other. Taunting her assailants with the knowledge of the spy, Ventress climbed nimbly to the top of the base's stairs. A lightsaber duel ensued when Skywalker slashed at Ventress, who drove him down to the foot of the stairs. Kenobi joined the fight and attacked Ventress as well. Ventress fought Skywalker and Kenobi simultaneously with her dual lightsabers and used the Force to telekinetically throw a piece of crystal rubble at the duo. Kenobi sliced the projectile in half, and he and Skywalker gradually drove Ventress back up the stairs.
Ventress fled into another room and was pursued there by the Jedi. Ventress summoned numerous books off their shelves and hurtled them at her pursuers; Kenobi stopped them with the Force, and Skywalker's added telekinetic assistance forced the books back at Ventress. As the Dark Acolyte assumed a submissive seated position, the two Jedi approached her with lightsabers ignited. However, Ventress suddenly activated her own lightsabers into the floor and opened up a hole, causing Skywalker and Kenobi to drop into the room below. Ventress mocked the two before fleeing, and the two Jedi jumped back up into the room above and followed Ventress as she broke a window and hurtled out of it. While Ventress landed on the head of an octuptarra magna tri-droid attached to the side of the building, Skywalker and Kenobi walked onto the balcony and discovered the full scale of the Confederate invasion force: numerous C-9979 landing craft were landing, bringing more and more battle droids to the surface, and many troops had already been deployed and were marching in formation on the ground far below. Despite the appearance of the invasion force, Skywalker and Kenobi continued the duel and jumped onto the legs of the tri-droid, severing two of its legs and breaking its hold on the building. Ventress jumped off the droid's head and briefly engaged Skywalker upon one of the droid's remaining legs. As the droid plummeted to the ground, Skywalker Force-pushed Ventress away, and he and Kenobi each commandeered a Single Trooper Aerial Platform from the B1 battle droids piloting them.
Ventress landed on the ground just as the tri-droid slammed to the ground with a crash behind her. The Dark Acolyte relayed orders to Loathsom through a tactical droid and told him to march on the city in order to keep the Jedi occupied while she departed to execute the next part of the plan devised by her Dark Jedi master, Count Dooku—a plan that involved turning Hutt crime lord Jabba Desilijic Tiure against the Jedi Order. Ventress then departed in her starship, the Trident, and left Loathsom in command of the Separatist occupation. Meanwhile, Cody and Rex began to interrogate Slick's men at the platoon's barracks despite protest from Slick, who claimed that the prospect of a traitor would undermine his men's morale. As investigations of troopers Jester, Sketch, Punch, and Gus proceeded without incident, trooper Chopper was forced to reveal that he had been making a necklace of droid fingers, an act forbidden by war protocols. Seeking to ensure that he himself was not framed, Slick put Chopper's credibility in question. However, while stating to Chopper his right to silence, Slick accidentally revealed that he was aware that the Jedi were absent from the base—knowledge that he would have only obtained if he had been listening on the Jedi's conversation earlier through the activated comlink. When Cody pressed him further on the matter, Slick struck out at Cody and Chopper and bolted for the exit, his allegiances revealed. Cody and Rex tracked Slick to the base's gunship landing pad, but instead of finding the spy, they discovered a primed thermal detonator.
Rex and Cody took cover moments before numerous explosives went off and completely destroyed the landing pad, the All Terrain Tactical Enforcers, and the weapon supply depot. Slick ran into the command center and hid in the vents above the room, and Cody and Rex pursued him there. The two officers engaged in a ploy to bait Slick out of the vents—while Cody left his DC-15S blaster on the table and secretly removed the ammunition from his weapon, Rex appeared to leave for the south exit to restart the generators. Slick forsook his hiding spot, stole Cody's blaster, and pointed the weapon at Cody, at which point the Commander revealed that it was empty. Rex re-entered the room, and the officers effectively surrounded Slick. The Sergeant stole Rex's blaster, and Cody lost his own blaster while disarming the Separatist agent. Cody knocked Slick down as the latter headed for the exit, and the two engaged in close combat before Rex pulled the clone traitor off Cody. Slick head-butted Rex and employed the "groin popper" maneuver to dislocate his leg. As Slick revealed the intentions behind his treason, he was knocked out by Cody and was locked in handcuffs. Once the Jedi returned to the base, the apprehended Slick accosted them on their "enslavement" of the clones before he was taken to lock-up.
The stakes are raised
Battle in Crystal City
- "We're gonna need reinforcements!"
"We haven't been able to get through to the Admiral."
- ―Obi-Wan Kenobi informs Anakin Skywalker of their inability to contact Admiral Yularen
Although the Republic forces were only able to salvage the AV-7 Antivehicle Cannons from the destroyed weapons depot, they regrouped and prepared for an attack. As the clone detachment, including troops from the 501st Legion, became based near Crystal City's main street and established a makeshift medical station, Kenobi, Skywalker, and their men fought the first wave of battle droids under Loathsom's command. While Cody and the Jedi Knight who had assisted Kenobi in defeating Admiral Trech's fleet oversaw the Republic's establishment of a base in Crystal City, Loathsom set out to destroy the Republic's command center with his troops before the base could be completed. Loathsom deployed his forces at the Republic's landing zone, but after his B1 battle droids, BX-series droid commandos, droid-piloted Single Trooper Aerial Platforms, and NR-N99 Persuader-class tanks did not succeed in breaching the Republic's tower-mounted turret defenses, he sent more powerful droidekas and tougher OG-9 homing spider droids to cut through the Republic's blaster emplacements. His assault still failed, however. Loathsom then targeted a Republic refugee camp and besieged it with his forces just as Cody and the Jedi Knight were setting up a defense of the camp. Despite Loathsom's deployment of droid starfighters and his advance of his ground troops under mobile super tank shield generators, Cody and the Jedi Knight managed to repel his droid forces.
With his army spread thin over the world, Loathsom dispatched his droids in two groups to meet up at a rendezvous point on the planet. When his battle groups were ambushed by Republic forces, Loathsom pressed his attack and sent several large tri-droids forward to assist in the battle. However, the Republic Star Destroyer Dauntless arrived over the battlefield, and Cody and his Jedi Knight compatriot put the cruiser's heavy turbolaser fire to good use in destroying Loathsom's forces. After several days, the Confederacy was forced to retreat, though the lull in fighting did not last long. Once the Republic cruiser Hunter had been dispatched for supplies and reinforcements, Loathsom launched another attack. B1 and B2 battle droids and a trio of tri-droids advanced in the front lines, with Armored Assault Tanks following close behind in large numbers. In response, Kenobi and Cody led the main force of clone troopers—some mounted on All Terrain Recon Transports and All Terrain Attack Pods—in a head-on charge against the droids in the main street.
Meanwhile, Skywalker, Rex, and a clone platoon proceeded through a route parallel to the central boulevard and made their way behind the droid lines. Rex, Clone Sergeant Coric, and the rest of the men accompanied Skywalker through the desecrated streets of the city to an energy sphere tower. Leaving the majority of the troops at the tower to ambush the street-level droids, Rex took a small group of clones to accompany Skywalker to the roof. The group surprised the Separatists' three advancing tri-droids from above; the clones used JT-12 jetpacks to safely descend to the ground below, while Skywalker landed on one of the droids himself. The squad's combined efforts brought the three droids down, and the clones proceeded to attack the still-advancing droid lines from behind. Realizing that the Republic's heavy cannons were the main obstacle to his forces' advance, Loathsom once again pulled back to set up a deflector shield. An OOM command battle droid relayed Loathsom's order to retreat to the droids on the front lines, and the battle droids pulled back to regroup in the Separatist-controlled part of the city. However, the battle over Christophsis continued to rage on between the opposing Republic and Separatist armadas.
With squadrons of opposing starfighters waging dogfights across the space over the planet, Admiral Yularen quickly sent the young Padawan learner Ahsoka Tano to the surface aboard a Nu-class attack shuttle from the Resolute as a messenger from the Jedi High Council with important orders for the Jedi Generals, as disruptions in the system's star had led to a communications blackout between Christophsis and the Jedi Temple. Tano landed in City Plaza, which the Republic had commandeered as a landing site, and was greeted by a surprised Skywalker and Kenobi, who had expected reinforcements instead of her. Tano revealed to Skywalker that she had been apprenticed to him by Jedi Grand Master Yoda, much to Skywalker's surprise and alarm. At some point during the fighting, the Separatists captured twenty-five technicians and other civilians, whom they planned to ship off-world. The Republic soon learned of the Separatists' plans and, with the Jedi occupied elsewhere, hastily arranged a rescue mission to save as many prisoners as possible before their transport arrived. A detachment of four 327th Star Corps troopers and other clones led by a clone commander infiltrated the Separatist prisoner compound from the outskirts. The clones battled their way through B2 super battle droids, OOM security battle droids, rocket battle droids, and other droid troops led by a B2-HA series super battle droid to rescue the three groups of prisoners.
Back in City Plaza, Skywalker, Tano, and Kenobi contacted Yoda at the Jedi Temple through the Resolute—which was being pounded by intense turbolaser fire from several Munificent-class frigates of the Separatist blockade, itself numbering less than the fleet commanded by Admiral Trench but still posing a threat—and, with all of their support ships already destroyed, requested reinforcements for the battle. Skywalker and Kenobi discovered that the Jedi Council had been unaware that the Republic forces had engaged the Confederacy but were able to get the request for assistance across to Yoda. Before the conversation could continue, increasing enemy fire caused the Resolute to drop the transmission. More Separatist ships arrived, and Yularen and the Resolute were forced to retreat from the Christoph system to avoid further damage. Without the Republic armada to provide support or transportation away from the planet, the Jedi were left trapped on Christophsis with limited supplies against the large droid army.
- "Right behind you, sir! They worked out most of my unit. We had to pull out of there!"
"The shield has almost reached the heavy cannons."
"We're not going to be able to stop them, sir."
"Move your troops back to the heavy cannons. Do everything you can to protect them. I'll delay the droids."
- ―Rex and Obi-Wan Kenobi
While the Republic kept watch on the Separatist forces by utilizing several towers throughout Crystal City as lookout stations, Loathsom finished setting up a deflector shield generator and launched yet another attack by advancing his forces in two groups from the south and east. In response, Kenobi led Alpha Squad to disrupt the advancement of the south force, while Bravo Squad was assigned to block the Separatists from the east. Kenobi and a rookie trooper charged the droids from two separate walkways and reached a tall Christophsian building. The trooper used a thermal detonator to topple the building and blocked the way of the Separatist troops. Bravo Squad, however, did not succeed in its mission, and the east Confederate force advanced behind its deflector shield, which negated the Republic's use of long-ranged artillery. The Confederate battle droids and Armored Assault Tanks advanced through Crystal City and were followed by several lines of NR-N99 Persuader-class tanks.
Meeting at the Republic's comm station, Skywalker, Kenobi, Tano, and Rex devised a plan of attack: while Skywalker and Tano would infiltrate the Separatist-held ground and eliminate the shield generator, Kenobi and Rex would gain time for them by defending the base. With Kenobi and Rex marshaling their men in a defense of the Republic's position, Skywalker and Tano proceeded with multiple explosives to the advancing Separatist lines. The pair hid underneath a large box in order to sneak past the advance droid forces. Once the shield and the droid troops had passed over them, Skywalker and Tano made their way to the generator but bumped into a droideka along the way. Forced to abandon their cover, Skywalker and Tano drew their lightsabers and succeeded in cutting the enemy droid to pieces. They then reached the generator site, which, unbeknownst to them, was being guarded by numerous LR-57 combat droids. Meanwhile, Kenobi and Rex attempted to use the base's heavy cannons to defend their position in Crystal City but only verified that the weaponry was indeed useless against the droids' deflector shield. Over an unencrypted comlink channel to make it appear more convincing, Rex ordered the clones to fall back before switching back to a secure channel. Loathsom, meanwhile, ordered his troops to target the heavy cannons, and Rex learned of the Separatists' new targets by eavesdropping on their voice traffic.
As soon as the droids' deflector shield passed over them, Kenobi led a charge on the droids and jumped straight into the fray. Rex and his men began to lure the Separatist troops into the buildings, where the clones had the advantage. The droids fired a missile at the Republic's comm post and inflicted further losses. With his forces overwhelmed by the Separatists, Rex was forced to order his men to retreat. Kenobi met with Rex at the comm station and ordered the Captain to organize his troops in a defense of the heavy cannons while the Jedi General himself delayed the droids. Rex reluctantly agreed and retreated as Kenobi battled the droids alone. However, Kenobi was soon surrounded by a large squad of B2 super battle droids and DSD1 dwarf spider droids, as well as Loathsom and his own Armored Assault Tank. At the generator site, despite Skywalker's warning for caution, Tano accidentally alerted the pre-planted LR-57 combat droids to their presence. As the droids emerged from their guard position just below the surface, Skywalker engaged them in combat so that Tano could place the charges around the generator. While evading one of the retail droids, Tano cut off her adversary's cranial unit and Force-pushed it away, inadvertently activating more droids in the process.
As Skywalker was surrounded by the combat droids, Tano noticed a wall behind her Master with a hole in the middle. Tano carefully brought the wall down with the Force, crushing the droids around Skywalker without hurting him. Despite the fact that Tano had saved his life, Skywalker was infuriated with her recklessness and believed that he could have been killed. Meanwhile, in order to gain time for Skywalker and Tano to eliminate the shield, Kenobi pretended to surrender to Loathsom. Kenobi was brought to a crystal table and patiently discussed the "terms of surrender" with Loathsom over a cup of tea, to the Confederate General's increasing impatience. Continuing to defend the heavy cannons with his men from their cover behind some fallen rubble at the end of the city's main street, Rex discovered that Kenobi had been captured but rallied his men to continue fighting. Loathsom finally realized that Kenobi was stalling and angrily overturned the table. Loathsom ordered two super battle droids to seize Kenobi and demanded that the Jedi General immediately call off his troops under the threat of being eradicated. At that moment, Skywalker and Tano detonated their charges and destroyed the shield generator, and the shield began to recede. Sighting the disappearing shield, Kenobi grabbed Loathsom around the neck. As the battle droids took aim, Loathsom ordered his troops not to attack and surrendered to Kenobi.
Back at the heavy cannons, Rex also saw the shield begin to dissipate and shot a Separatist Kerkoiden tank commander out of sheer relief. Rex proceeded to order the heavy cannons to target the exposed battle droids, and the clone artillery opened fire on the enemy forces and began to annihilate them. Yularen—accompanied by Master Yoda himself—returned to the system and dropped out of hyperspace with a fleet of Venator-class Star Destroyers and Acclamator I-class assault ships as reinforcements. With the cruisers protecting the transports, Yularen's battle group engaged the Confederate blockade, which consisted of several Lucrehulk-class battleships and Munificent-class frigates. Yularen was able to break through the Separatist defenses and forced the enemy armada to retreat from Christophsis. LAAT/i gunships were deployed from the Republic fleet and assisted the heavy cannons in bombarding the droid forces. An Acclamator-class transport landed in Crystal City and dispatched clone trooper units for further reinforcements on the planet, thus securing the Republic's victory over Loathsom and the Confederacy.
- "Kidnapped, Jabba the Hutt's son has been. Negotiate the treaty with Jabba, Obi-Wan will. Find the renegades that hold Jabba's son, your mission will be, Skywalker."
- ―Yoda gives Skywalker and Tano their new assignment
In defeating Loathsom, the Republic had turned what would have been a sure Separatist victory into a gain for the Republic. Rex took an LAAT/i gunship to retrieve Skywalker and Tano from the generator site and brought them back to the Republic's base. Meeting with Skywalker, Tano, and Kenobi, Yoda informed them that the son of crime lord Jabba the Hutt, Rotta the Huttlet, had been kidnapped by a group of renegades. Because rescuing Rotta was necessary to gaining Jabba's favor for granting the Grand Army access to hyperspace lanes running through Hutt-controlled space, Skywalker's and Tano's mission would be to rescue the captive Huttlet, while Kenobi would enter into negotiations with Jabba on his home planet of Tatooine. Based on clone intelligence reports, Skywalker, Tano, and Rex ventured to the Wild Space planet Teth to rescue Rotta with the 501st detachment Torrent Company. However, they were unaware that they were heading straight into a trap set by Count Dooku and Asajj Ventress, who were intent on claiming the hyperlanes for the Confederacy and their own armies and had orchestrated Rotta's capture with help from Jabba's own uncle, Ziro Desilijic Tiure, in order to manipulate the Jedi and turn Jabba against them.
A holorecording was taken of the Battle of Christophsis and was later edited on the planet Alderaan to focus on the Jedi's victory. The recording was then broadcast by HoloNet News to the Republic to further promote the Jedi's valiant efforts. In actuality, the hard-won but costly Republic victory on Christophsis reduced several key cities to rubble. Although many Republic citizens commended the defeat of a Separatist advance that had had the potential of cutting the Jedi and clone troopers off from the Galactic Core, some secretly cheered the damage that had been done to one of the Outer Rim's richest and most arrogant worlds. Additionally, by the end of the battle, many Christophsians, both resisters and civilians, had been killed. Although the Republic took much effort to protect Christophsis against future Separatist incursions, the Confederacy managed to establish a mining effort for the production of a new superweapon, the battleship Devastation. Journals written by Jedi who had fought in the Battle of Christophsis were eventually published in the Jedi Battle Logs collection. Following his capture by Kenobi during the battle, Loathsom was taken to the galactic capital of Coruscant, where he was tried and swiftly found guilty of treason against the Republic for his continued service in his Republic-allied homeworld's planetary forces. After being interrogated by Republic Intelligence, Loathsom was sent to solitary confinement on the prison world of Akrit'tar, his widespread reputation in the war shamed by his defeat, though he escaped with the help of Separatist agents.
Behind the scenes
Portrayal and conception
- "On Christophsis, one of two new planets developed for the animated feature, viewers are plunged smack in the middle of a frenetic ground battle between Republic clone troopers and Separatist battle droids at the film's opening."
- ―An excerpt from The Art of Star Wars: The Clone Wars
The Battle of Christophsis first appeared in the 2008 Star Wars: The Clone Wars film and its accompanying novelization. As the film led into the 2008 television series of the same name, the battle was the first to be featured in the series. The battle introduced both the planet Christophsis and Anakin Skywalker's new Padawan, Ahsoka Tano, both subjects of which were expanded upon in the series. Asajj Ventress's role in the battle was first alluded to in the 2008 novel The Clone Wars: Wild Space, and her involvement in the battle and the battle's preliminary stages were eventually elaborated upon in the series' January 2009 first season episode "The Hidden Enemy," which was created as a prequel to the film at Series Producer George Lucas's request for Christophsis's back story to be expanded upon. Sergeant Slick's and his men's reconnaissance of the planet appeared in the webcomic Shadowed, which led into "The Hidden Enemy." The battle also appeared in multiple The Clone Wars young reader books.
Since its central roles in The Clone Wars film and "The Hidden Enemy," the Battle of Christophsis has been featured in the Nintendo DS version of the 2009 Republic Heroes video game and in the 25 to Rescue scenario for the Star Wars Roleplaying Game, written by Sterling Hershey and published on Wizards.com. A canonical result for the scenario has not been specified. In March 2010, the battle made an appearance once more in The Clone Wars television series, this time in the second season episode "Cat and Mouse," which occurred chronologically before "The Hidden Enemy" and detailed Admiral Trench's blockade of Christophsis. Including the portion of the battle featured in The Clone Wars film, the episode marked the third such one to expand upon the Battle of Christophsis, stretching it out over a three-part story arc throughout the television series. The battle was additionally featured in the "Republic Defender" mini-game of the Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures video game, which specifically detailed Whorm Loathsom's campaign against the Republic. As of the Spring 2011 conclusion to the television series' third season, the Battle of Christophsis has been ranked by Star Wars Insider as one of the largest engagements seen in the series, with the others being the Battle of Ryloth, the Second Battle of Geonosis, and the Battle of Kamino.
The battle was originally to appear in a "flashback" episode, entitled "The New Padawan," that was produced in the television series' first season. After Lucas decided to merge several episodes together for a theatrical release of The Clone Wars, however, the episode was moved to its correct chronological placement with other episodes from the first season and became the film's opening act.
There are several discrepancies between the novelization of The Clone Wars film and the movie itself that affect the Battle of Christophsis. A notable example was that in the novel, following the battle, Yoda gave Skywalker, Tano, and Kenobi their assignments to aid in the rescue of Rotta the Huttlet while aboard a Jedi cruiser, while the film featured this scene on the surface of Christophsis. In this case, this article follows the latter's interpretation of events. However, there is a more glaring inconsistency between the film's novelization and The Clone Wars: Wild Space. The novelization stated that the cruiser Resolute was present during the battle Christophsis, whereas Wild Space dictated that it was commissioned after the battle. Following sources did nothing to resolve this issue, with The Official Episode Guide: Season 1 claiming that the Resolute appeared in the film and the official guide for "Cat and Mouse" verifying an appearance in that episode. In a similar fashion, the Star Destroyer Dauntless, which was initially said to have been commissioned alongside the Resolute in Wild Space, was given a role in the "Republic Defender" mini-game of Clone Wars Adventures, cementing its part in the Battle of Christophsis in spite of its supposedly later commission, according to Wild Space. Until a solution to the contradictions is provided, this article assumes that the Resolute and Dauntless were involved in the battle.
Although the young readers' book Meet Ahsoka Tano claimed that the events of the television episode "Rising Malevolence" took place just a few days after the Battle of Christophsis, this profession interrupted the more drawn-out chronology between the Battle of Christophsis and the events portrayed in the episode "Downfall of a Droid," which was established in The Clone Wars: Wild Space and was further cemented by the fact that "Downfall of a Droid" was confirmed to occur chronologically prior to "Rising Malevolence." In light of the other sources' statements, his article assumes that Meet Ahsoka Tano is in error.
One of the two missions depicting the Battle of Christophsis in the Nintendo DS version of Republic Heroes greatly contradicts The Clone Wars film and television series. The mission features Senator Padmé Amidala and Anakin Skywalker arriving at Crystal City to investigate droid activity in the sector recently lost by the Republic. Skywalker and Amidala travel through the city until they face a force field blocking their way. Master Yoda then assists them by deactivating the field. The two continue their way and eventually confront Count Dooku inside a Christophsian building. After a duel with Skywalker—whom Amidala assists with her blaster—Dooku retreats. During the duel with Dooku, however, Skywalker informs the unaware Count that the Confederate General Grievous plans to obtain a superweapon from beneath an ocean of lava on the planet Mustafar. Skywalker finds out about Grievous's plans only during the Mission to Skytop Station, which takes place after the Battle of Christophsis has already been won by the Republic. Because of such a confusing storyline that would take too much fan-based speculation to implement into the pre-existing story, this article assumes that this mission of the video game is non-canonical.
The 2011 non-canonical video game LEGO Star Wars III: The Clone Wars features the Battle of Christophsis in its depiction of "The Hidden Enemy." Besides being much more humorous and comical than the episode, the game modifies some of the battle's early stages. During the Separatists' ambush of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker at the South tower, Hawk's gunship is initially unable to land at the roof because of two gun turrets there, which are not present in the episode. Later, instead of simply severing the tri-droid that Asajj Ventress used at the Separatist headquarters, Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi are forced to engage it in a prolonged fight. In the Nintendo DS edition of the game, the Separatists use Single Trooper Aerial Platforms against the Republic battle group in the South tower. While returning to the Republic base, Hawk's gunship is forced to engage a tri-droid in the city. During Skywalker's and Kenobi's duel with Ventress, they simply Force-push the tri-droid she is standing on off the roof of the Separatist headquarters instead of following and dueling her on the droid, as they do in the episode.
Notes and references