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Space Battle at Kuat

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Space Battle at Kuat
File:First Battle of Kuat.jpg
Conflict

Galactic Civil War (Fresian campaign)[1]

Date

1 BBY[2]

Place

In orbit above Kuat[1]

Outcome

Alliance to Restore the Republic strategic victory and retreat[1]

Combatants

Galactic Empire[1]

Alliance to Restore the Republic[1]

Commanders

Captain Raymus Antilles[1]

Strength

5 CR90 corvettes[1]

Casualties


"This is the Kuat shipyard. We have come under Rebel attack. Requesting assistance."
"This is the Tyranny. Your satellite defenses should be adequate to deal with any Rebel fleet. Activate them!"
―The captain of the Star Destroyer Tyranny refuses an Imperial shipyard officer assistance[src]

The Space Battle at Kuat was an operation performed in 0 BBY by Rebel Alliance Captain Raymus Antilles to lure the Imperial I-class Star Destroyer Tyranny away from the planet Fresia, where four prototype T-65 X-wing starfighters were being stored. During the battle, five CR90 corvettes, including the Sundered Heart, commanded by Antilles, raided the Imperial shipyards orbiting Kuat, destroying multiple unfinished ships while the Imperials scrambled to rally reinforcements. The mission was a success for the Rebels, who withdrew into hyperspace soon after the Tyranny arrived.

Prelude

"There's no way we're getting past that Star Destroyer. You'd think the Fresians would have warned us!"
"It's not their fault. The nationalization wasn't announced. The Emperor likes his surprises."
"So what now?"
"If the Tyranny is here, it's not at it's normal station… and the Tyranny is normally stationed at…"
"Kuat! The Imperial shipyards?"
"Yes! I think we can get their attention…"
―The pilot of the Sundered Heart, speaking with Captain Raymus Antilles[src]

During the early days of the Galactic Civil War, the Galactic Empire decided to nationalize the independent Incom Corporation, as it had done with other organizations before. However, much of the design and research teams of Incom strongly disagreed with this decision, to the point where many of them decided to defect to the Rebel Alliance in 0 BBY.[3] It was through these defectors that the Rebellion learned of a facility on the planet Fresia holding the four prototypes of Incom's newest starfighter design: the T-65 starfighter, later known more commonly as the "X-wing" fighter.[1]

In 0 BBY, the Rebel Alliance, in dire need of a new starfighter design to replace the aging Z-95 Headhunters that were in common use throughout the Rebellion at the time, dispatched a force led by Captain Raymus Antilles to secure the prototype X-wings from the Empire. However, when Antilles and his task force entered into the Fre'ji system, they detected the Imperial I-class Star Destroyer Tyranny in orbit around Fresia. This caused a serious complication: with the Tyranny in orbit, the task force was unable to approach the planet.[1]

The battle

"Kuat Shipyard to all Imperial units! We are under siege by significant Rebel forces! All ships in the area, respond! Emergency Code Zero!"
―The Imperial commander at Kuat calling for reinforcements[src]
Kuat Diversion

Antilles's task force, in formation at the beginning of the battle.

Antilles, in his modified CR90 corvette, the Sundered Heart, led four flanking corvettes to perform a hit-and-run raid on the orbital shipyards of the planet Kuat in order to lure the Tyranny from its new station at Fresia back to its usual station above Kuat. Imperial resistance at Kuat was light, and the Rebel corvettes easily defeated the defending TIE/ln starfighters and Tartan-class patrol cruisers. Many orbital resource containers were strewn about the half completed starships there, and the Rebel corvettes targeted the containers, which then exploded and destroyed the surrounding shipyards.[1][4]

The Tyranny originally refused several times to respond to distress calls from the shipyard's communications officer. When the Rebels destroyed the last shipyard, the officer activated Emergency Code Zero. In response, the Tyranny returned to Kuat to render aid to the Imperial defenders. The commander of the Tyranny allowed the Star Destroyer to come out of hyperspace with the shields down, giving the small Rebel raiding force a chance to damage the warship before escaping.[1]

Aftermath

"The Tyranny and its fleet will most likely remain at their post while it is being repaired. The devastation of Kuat Shipyard should prove to be a lengthy distraction."
―Mon Mothma, after the battle[src]

With the devastation of the Kuat shipyards and the damaging of the Tyranny, the Rebels believed that Fresia would be left unprotected, allowing them to raid the Incom facility. However, before the Tyranny had returned to Kuat, it had deployed numerous sentry drones to lock down the Fre'ji system in its absence. When the Rebels detected this, it seemed certain that the mission to retrieve the prototype X-wings would have to be canceled. However, the protocol droid C-3PO was able to devise a plan that would allow the Rebels to slip past the Imperial defenses. C-3PO's astromech droid counterpart, R2-D2, would proceed to the planet Wayland, where he would steal the Imperial codes that would allow a Rebel team to enter the Fre'ji system undetected. Antilles agreed to this plan and immediately dispatched both C-3PO and R2-D2 to Wayland with a large ground force to escort them.[1]

Behind the scenes

The Space Battle at Kuat is the first mission of the Rebel campaign in the 2006 LucasArts PC game Star Wars: Empire at War. The mission is the first in a series of three missions that lead to the acquisition of T-65 X-wing starfighters for use by the Rebellion. The battle was first identified as the "Space Battle at Kuat" in the game's official strategy guide, published by Prima Games.

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