The Imperial Navy, also called the Imperial Armada, was the naval branch of the Sith Empire's Imperial military. It fought against the Galactic Republic during the Great Galactic War and was maintained in the Cold War that followed. The Navy fielded a large fleet of warships of various classes throughout the War. It was constructed over centuries by orders of Grand Moff Odile Vaiken, who knew that he would not live to see a fraction of it complete.
When the original Sith Empire of Naga Sadow collapsed and the Sith went into exile in the Unknown Regions, the navy shrunk to a small group of ships used to travel by the remnant. After finding refuge on Dromund Kaas, the Sith began a massive build up of military forces under Grand Moff Odile Vaiken. He started construction on a massive armada that took nearly three centuries to complete, knowing he would not be alive when it was done. All non-Force-sensitive people living on Dromund Kaas were conscripted either into the Navy or the Imperial Army. Vaiken died during the first operation undertaken by the Navy, Odile Vaiken's final campaign against an alien race.
During the Great Galactic War, the Navy proved to be a vital component of the military. They transported Army troops to various worlds, taking part in various engagements with the Republic Navy. Those included Skirmish in the Tingel Arm, and the first and second Battles of Bothawui. In the final act of the war, a massive fleet was used to sack Coruscant, the capital of the Galactic Republic. It led to the Treaty of Coruscant, causing the Navy to stop activities.
The Imperial Navy was the naval branch of the Imperial Military, and was overseen by the Ministry of War alongside the Army. Imperial Navy ranks adhered to the following structure: Private, Specialists, Corporal, Petty Officer, Ensign, Lieutenant, Lieutenant Commander, Commander, Post Captain, Group Captain, Commodore, Admiral, and Grand Admiral. The primary vessel of the Navy was the Harrower-class dreadnought, a massive dreadnaught produced by Taerab Starship Manufacturing and measuring approximately 800 meters in length, that required a crew of 2,400 and carried a troop complement of 7,300. The Harrower-class was supported by the smaller Terminus-class destroyer, which was operated by 520 crewman and carried only 285 troops, and the even smaller Gage-class transport. The two main shuttles used by the Sith Empire were the Imperial shuttle and the Imperial assault shuttle. The Navy deployed a number of starfighters—the Mark VI Supremacy-class starfighter and its numerous advanced models were the standard starfighter of the Navy, and they made use of B28 Extinction-class bombers as well as a variety of transports, assault craft, shuttles, and cruisers.
Dreadnoughts were the largest of the Empire's battleships. They represented the true power of the armada. Only one type of dreadnought was known:
Battleships act as the heavy hitters in a fleet; they are the main combative ships and are protected by other, smaller, vessels like the frigates and destroyers. They are almost always considered as capital ships, an engagement is usually won through battlecruisers and battleships.
Cruisers are medium-sized vessels, able to operate independently or within a fleet. They would have the capacity to be used as anti-fighters, planetary bombers, raiders of enemy supply lines, and scouts. However, they are also the ships that are mostly used in non-combat roles such as exploration or even colonization due to their ability to operate independently for extended periods of time.
Ships smaller than cruisers (and usually larger than frigates, though not always) but armed to the teeth with a variety of weapons. They mostly act as escorts for larger fleets (and likely not for single warships, but exceptions would certainly exist). The destroyers fulfill all sorts of roles because of how multi-purpose they are, even roles that could be fulfilled by other classes that are designed for that purpose. Most famous in the Empire is the:
Smaller vessels with light armament and armor (but more powerful and larger than a corvette), suited for speed and maneuverability. They often act as patrol and escort vessels, whether for a merchant convoy, a single capital ship, or a fleet. Their agility and maneuverability means they can move to redeploy and protect other ships better than larger, slower moving vessels.
the smallest warships, designed for escort and patrol, anti-mine, or anti-stealth. They would be used where larger ships with more firepower are not deemed necessary (such as backwater worlds or low-risk areas) or where a larger ship would be unsuitable for deployment. Corvettes might be outfitted to have some sort of stealth or cloaking system for reconnaissance or spec ops missions; naturally it would be easier to cloak a smaller ship than a larger one (though plenty of examples of large stealth ships exist). They would, ideally, never be used for direct combat in large scale engagements due to their extremely light armor and weapons, but may be employed in a battle to lay down or destroy minefields, uncover stealth ships, act as stealth ships on their own.
A capital ship can operate independantly of the fleet. It does not need the other vessels to function. A capital ship is generally the main target of the capital ships of the enemy. This definition applies only to independence in a large-scale battle. Other ships can operate independently in other scenarios, such as patrol, but in a large-scale battle they would not be able to fight the enemy fleet without the capital ships. Capital ships are most of the time some of the largest and most heavily armored ships in a fleet. However, they are not the same as flagships. A fleet can have multiple capital ships within it; the term simply describes the capabilities of a particular vessel. But an individual fleet can only have one flagship at a time, the "leading" ship, which the commander is present on and operates from. If the capital ships are destroyed, the fleet is beaten. But if the rest of the fleet is destroyed, the capital ships can still operate.
- The Old Republic, Blood of the Empire Act 1: Shades of the Sith
- The Old Republic, Blood of the Empire Act 3: Burn the Future
- The Old Republic: Deceived
- The Old Republic, Threat of Peace Act 1: Treaty of Coruscant (First appearance)
- The Old Republic, Threat of Peace Act 2: New Galactic Order
- The Old Republic, Threat of Peace Act 3: Uncertain Surrender
- Timeline 1: Treaty of Coruscant
- Timeline 2: The Mandalorian Blockade is Broken
- Timeline 5: The Battle of Bothawui
- Timeline 6: Onslaught of the Sith Empire
- Timeline 11: Rebirth of the Sith Empire (First identified as Imperial Armada)
- The Old Republic: Fatal Alliance
- Star Wars: The Old Republic
- Star Wars: The Old Republic Volume 3: The Lost Suns
- The Old Republic: Annihilation
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Rise of the Hutt Cartel
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Galactic Starfighter
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Knights of the Eternal Throne
- The Art and Making of Star Wars: The Old Republic
- Book of Sith: Secrets from the Dark Side
- Star Wars: The Old Republic Encyclopedia