|Bulwark Mark III|
Bulwark Mark III
- "Your primary objective is to locate civilians and get them to an evacuation ship."
- ―Jedi Master Lar Le'Ung, regarding the Bulwarks' role in the evacuation of Rychel
The Bulwark Mark III, also known as the Bulwark-class battle cruiser, was a massive warship manufactured by TransGalMeg Industries using an old Techno Union battleship model from the Clone Wars as a design basis. Outfitted with an extensive offensive arsenal, shielding, and carrying capacity, the 2,500-meter-long Bulwark Mark III was well suited for large-scale operations. During the Galactic Civil War, the Bulwark was one of the more heavily armored and durable vessels used by the Alliance to Restore the Republic. Later, in 25 ABY, during the Yuuzhan Vong War, the New Republic employed several Bulwarks in an operation to help evacuate citizens from the beleaguered planet Rychel, which had fallen under Yuuzhan Vong attack, and again during a blockade to defend the planet Shramar from Vong invasion.
The TransGalMeg Industries Bulwark Mark III, or Bulwark-class battle cruiser, was a massive, 2,500-meter capital warship designed for large-scale military operations. Although plagued by rumors of unreliable electronics and sensors, the Bulwark Mark III nevertheless boasted an extensive arsenal, shielding, and carrying capacity. Armed with 1,250 turbolasers—500 fore, 150 aft, and 300 each port and starboard—and 600 ion cannons—200 fore, eighty aft, and 150 each port and starboard—and outfitted with a support complement of up to ten starfighter squadrons and four troop regiments, the Bulwark was a veritable mobile fortress. Adding to its versatility, the immense battlecruiser was capable of making planetary landfall and disembarking ground forces. The Bulwark was equipped with a hyperdrive system in addition to a basic sublight drive.
TransGalMeg manufactured the Bulwark Mark III using the old designs of the Bulwark Mark I—a behemoth warship developed by the Techno Union and later used by the Confederacy of Independent Systems against the Galactic Republic during the Clone Wars—as a starting point. The Bulwark Mark III directly succeeded the Bulwark Mark II, another Confederate battleship from the Clone Wars. During the subsequent Galactic Civil War years later, the Bulwark Mark III proved to be one of the more battle-proof, armored, and durable starships used by the Rebel Alliance Fleet.
TransGalMeg also constructed Bulwark Mark IIIs for the burgeoning New Republic, the Rebel Alliance's successor state, early in its existence. In 25 ABY, amidst the Yuuzhan Vong War, the New Republic dispatched at least four Bulwarks to assist in the evacuation of the besieged planet Rychel, whose civilians had fallen under attack by the Yuuzhan Vong. The Bulwarks delivered a joint force of Republic troops and Jedi led by Masters Luke Skywalker and Lar Le'Ung to Rychel's surface to combat the Vong and evacuate as many civilians as possible aboard the battlecruisers. Once filled with Rychel evacuees, the Bulwarks departed the planet with the surviving Jedi and Republic forces, although many civilians were left behind at the mercy of the Yuuzhan Vong, as the New Republic did not have the resources to evacuate everyone.
Later in 25 ABY, at least two Bulwarks participated in the joint New Republic–Imperial blockade of the planet Shramar, an effort to prevent the Yuuzhan Vong fleet from recovering its captured slaveship, the Heart of Artorias, which the Republic and Imperials were using on the surface to evacuate refugees from the planet. The blockade, however, eventually became part of a larger plan masterminded by Queen Nina Galfridian of the planet Artorias to destroy the Yuuzhan Vong's vital supply fields on Shramar. As the Vong attack on Shramar began, Galfridian ordered the joint Republic–Imperial fleet to withdraw into hyperspace and wait, a diversionary move. Convinced the planetary defenders had retreated in defeat, the Vong moved in to attack the Heart of Artorias. At that moment Galfridian ordered her ships to return to Shramar. The Bulwarks and the rest of the fleet arrived on the other side of the planet from the Vong force and unleashed a devastating orbital bombardment that wiped out the enemy supply fields before once more escaping into hyperspace and later rendezvousing at the edge of Wild Space.
Behind the scenesEdit
- "Good catch on the Bulwark battlecruiser from the game Rebellion. Note that this is actually the 'Bulwark Mark I,' however. It's still definitely a Rebellion tie-in, but I wanted to make sure I depowered the ship enough for it to fit into the Clone Wars timeframe."
- ―Daniel Wallace discusses the Bulwark's inclusion in The New Essential Chronology
The Bulwark Mark III first appeared in the 1998 PC game Star Wars: Rebellion as one of the playable capital ships available to the Rebel Alliance. Referred to in the game as the "Bulwark Battlecruiser," and by the in-game encyclopedia as the "Bulwark class capital ship," the Bulwark represents the game's most powerful warship in the Alliance arsenal, designed to be a competitive match for the Galactic Empire's Super Star Destroyer in gameplay. As the Bulwark's entry in the Star Wars: Rebellion: Prima's Official Strategy Guide notes, "the Bulwark battlecruiser is the most powerful in the game and can stand toe-to-toe with all Imperial ships except the Death Star…this battlecruiser is almost a fleet in and of itself. It's the natural flagship for any major Alliance fleet."
The Bulwark from Star Wars: Rebellion was later given a nod in the 2005 reference book The New Essential Chronology, which refers to a "Bulwark Mark I" vessel utilized by the Techno Union during the Clone Wars. Author Daniel Wallace explained on TheForce.net's Jedi Council Forums that he intended this vessel to be a Rebellion tie-in, as a sort of Clone Wars–era predecessor to the Rebellion Bulwark battlecruiser. Wallace went on to speculate on the Rebellion Bulwark's exact relation to his Bulwark Mark I: "I'll allow that they could be Mark IIIs or IVs, depending on whether anyone ever goes back to create new ship classes. I've always thought that the New Republic got their hands on Bulwarks at some point post-ROJ, but that the Rebel Alliance never did."
In 2008, the Rebellion Bulwark was granted an official starship classification with the release of The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, which identified the vessel as the "Bulwark-class battle cruiser," drawing upon the original in-game encyclopedia entry material from Star Wars: Rebellion. The Bulwark again appeared in the 2009 comic Star Wars: Invasion 3: Refugees, Part 3, written by Tom Taylor, which featured the starship class in a prominent New Republic military role during the Yuuzhan Vong War. Taylor again included the Bulwark in New Republic service in the subsequent 2011 comic Star Wars: Invasion 16: Revelations, Part 5.
Author Jason Fry, who has collaborated with Daniel Wallace on several previous Star Wars works, included the Rebellion Bulwark in his 2012 reference book The Essential Guide to Warfare, in which he established the vessel's name as the "Bulwark Mark III" and described it as being built by TransGalMeg Industries for the New Republic. According to Fry, he intended to canonize Wallace's plans for the evolution of the Rebellion Bulwark class, which Wallace had previously discussed on TheForce.net's message boards but had never had an opportunity to do so. Note, however, that Wallace's evolution disregards Star Wars: Rebellion and The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, both of which state that the Rebel Alliance utilized the Bulwark. Given the certain ambiguity of Fry's wording in The Essential Guide to Warfare, this article attempts to reconcile all information.
- Star Wars: Rebellion (First appearance) (as "Bulwark Battlecruiser" and "Bulwark class capital ship")
- Star Wars: Invasion 3: Refugees, Part 3
- Star Wars: Invasion 16: Revelations, Part 5
- Star Wars: Rebellion: Prima's Official Strategy Guide (as Bulwark battlecruiser)
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia (First identified as Bulwark-class battle cruiser)
- The Essential Guide to Warfare (First identified as Bulwark Mark III)
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. I, p. 97 ("Bulwark-class battle cruiser")
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 The Essential Guide to Warfare
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Star Wars: Invasion 3: Refugees, Part 3
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Star Wars: Invasion 16: Revelations, Part 5
- ↑ 5.00 5.01 5.02 5.03 5.04 5.05 5.06 5.07 5.08 5.09 5.10 5.11 5.12 5.13 5.14 5.15 Star Wars: Rebellion
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 The New Essential Chronology
- ↑ Star Wars: Rebellion: Prima's Official Strategy Guide
- ↑ The Official Daniel Wallace Discussion Thread on the Jedi Council Forums (Literature board; posted by Dan Wallace on October 26, 2005, 8:02pm; accessed November 16, 2012)
- ↑ The Official Daniel Wallace Discussion Thread on the Jedi Council Forums (Literature board; posted by Dan Wallace on October 31, 2005, 9:08am; accessed November 16, 2012)
- ↑ The Essential Atlas
- ↑ Bulwark Mark III/e-mail. Jason Fry commentary. "I was looking to canonize Dan Wallace's plans for the evolution of the class, which he'd discussed but never had a chance to make formally so."