TIE/D Defender


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Warning! This page contains MAJOR spoilers from Star Wars Rebels Season Three. Caution is advised.

"If they're actually building these in numbers, our pilots won't stand a chance."
"And neither will the rebellion."
Hera Syndulla and Kanan Jarrus[src]

The TIE/D Defender, commonly known as the TIE Defender, was an advanced TIE line starfighter manufactured by Sienar Fleet Systems for the Imperial Navy of the Galactic Empire. Unlike previous TIE models, the starfighter featured a hyperdrive as well as deflector shields. The TIE Defender was considered a fighter-bomber and was capable of firing missiles that detonated over a moderate area, causing high damage to enemy defenses.


TIED Defender Schematics-SW Rebels-An Inside Man

TIE/D Defender schematics

"Looks like some kind of new TIE Interceptor, but this one has shields."
"But TIE fighters never had shields before."
Sabine Wren and Hera Syndulla[src]

Like the rest of the TIE line starfighters,[1] the TIE/D Defender featured a ball-shaped cockpit module and solar array wings. However, while the standard TIE/ln space superiority starfighter and many other TIE variants, including the TIE/IN interceptor and the TIE Advanced x1, had two parallel wings to either side of the pilot module, the TIE/D Defender had three wings mounted around an aft section of the cockpit.[2] It also included deflector shields, a new feature of TIE fighters. Upon seeing the Defender's specifications, Captain Hera Syndulla of the Phoenix rebel cell feared that if the Empire were to mass produce them, their pilots wouldn't have a chance against them.[4]


Spectres discover TIE Defender

The rebels examine the stolen TIE/D Defender schematics

"A new fighter? Difficult to see how one small ship will change much."
"Agent, victory and defeat are often determined by the smallest detail."
ISB Agent Kallus and Grand Admiral Thrawn[src]

In 2 BBY,[6] the Galactic Empire at the instigation of Grand Admiral Thrawn began preparations to produce TIE Defenders at the Imperial Factory on the planet Lothal. With the help of Ryder Azadi's Lothal resistance, the Spectres stole the starfighter's schematics. They feared that the Empire would start manufacturing TIE Defenders in large numbers and use them to destroy their growing rebellion using their shields and other improvements over previous TIE models.[4]

Behind the scenesEdit

"For those of us who remember playing the TIE Fighter game, it's a great ship. It's fast, it's got shields, it's got a hyperdrive. It sort of evens the odds and you don't need hundreds and hundreds upon them to defeat just a small number of Rebel starfighters. It evens the odds between the versatility of an X-wing fighter and the limited capabilities of a TIE fighter."
Pablo Hidalgo[src]

The TIE/D Defender originated in the 1994 video game Star Wars: TIE Fighter by LucasArts, where it was depicted as the top-of-the-line Imperial fighter model.[7] The fighter was incorporated into canon upon its inclusion in the mobile strategy game Star Wars: Commander.[2] The TIE Defender's schematics made an appearance in "An Inside Man," the eighth episode of the third season of Star Wars Rebels animated television series;[4] and the fighter itself will be featured in the second half of the series' third season.[8] According to the Rebels crew, the Defender seemed a philosophical departure for the Empire, pouring such resources into a small fighter craft, but a rather unconventional Imperial like Thrawn backing the project made sense for them to introduce the fighter into the show.[3][9]



Notes and referencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Ultimate Star Wars
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 Star Wars: Commander
  3. 3.0 3.1 SWCustom-2011 Rebels Recon: Inside "An Inside Man" on (backup link on
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Rebels-mini-logo Star Wars Rebels – "An Inside Man"
  5. Star Wars Battlefront
  6. 6.0 6.1 The events depicted in "An Inside Man" take place after Star Wars Rebels: Steps Into Shadow, which is the first known episode to take place in the second year before the Battle of Yavin. As such, we can deduce that this event takes place in the second year before the Battle of Yavin. For more information, see Wookieepedia's Timeline of Star Wars Rebels Events.
  7. Star Wars: TIE Fighter
  8. SWCustom-2011 Star Wars Rebels Season 3 - Mid-Season Trailer (Official) on (backup link on
  9. SWCustom-2011 An Inside Man Trivia Gallery on (backup link on (image 4 of 4)
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