At Walker Star Wars

Elaine Sutton
• Thursday, 17 December, 2020
• 14 min read

Standing over 20 meters tall with blast-impervious armor plating, these massive constructs are used as much for psychological effect as they are for tactical advantage. When Agent Callus and the Empire tracked the Ghost crew to Seems, they brought with them a new kind of weapon: the AT-AT.

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(Source: www.cgtrader.com)


Massive and powerful, the rebels’ clone trooper friends were impressed with the four-legged tanks’ advances in engineering, armor, and firepower. Web, Kazan, and Ezra eventually commandeered one of the walkers, helping Captain Rex to destroy the only remaining AT-AT, and Callus ordered a hasty retreat.

The gigantic combat vehicles were air-dropped onto the snowy world, where they marched toward the command center and were met by Rebel defenses. Commander Luke Skywalker ordered his squadron to use harpoons and tow cables, tying the legs of the hulking transports.

Though this tactic proved effective at toppling a walker, the Rebels were ultimately unable to stop the Empire’s advance. General Veers, leading the surface attack, targeted and destroyed the Rebel base’s main power generator.

Atlas were used by the Empire as transports on Vendor, the forest world that was home to the Death Star II’s shield generator. While not as imposing as its larger AT-AT walker cousin, the AT-ST nonetheless served as a significant addition to the Imperial side of battlefields in the Galactic Civil War.

The two-man craft is lightly armed with chin-mounted laser cannons, and side-mounted weapon pods. During the Galactic Civil War, scout walkers proved effective not only as escorts for larger Atlas, but also as vehicles undertaking independent operations such as reconnaissance, patrols and anti-infantry missions.

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All Terrain Armored Transport Star Wars vehicleFirst appearance The Empire Strikes Back Last appearance Lego Star Wars : The Skywalker Saga Created but Drive YardsInformationAffiliationGalactic EmpireAuxiliary vehiclesGeneral characteristicsClass Walker Armaments 2 Tail & Back MS-1 fire-linked heavy laser cannons 2 Tail & Back FF-4 medium repeating blasters Population volume theme park attraction Star Wars : Rise of the Resistance, set after The Last Jedi, features two full-sized Atlas in a hangar bay.

For The Empire Strikes Back, however, the final design was a four-legged walker. Inspiration for the AT-AT came from Paraceratherium, an extinct genus of rhinoceros and the largest land mammal in history.

George Lucas later dismissed claims that the AT-AT design was inspired by container cranes at the Port of Oakland (across San Francisco Bay from ILM's San Rafael offices), calling it a “myth”; animator Phil Tippet told the San Francisco Chronicle the same thing. ILM created models ranging from six to fifty centimeters (2–20 inches) in height.

ILM filmed the Atlas using stop-motion animation against matte paintings created by Michael Panoramic because attempts at compositing miniature footage against live-action background footage yielded mediocre results. Additionally, ILM studied elephants to determine the best way to animate the four-legged Atlas.

Although the stop-motion animation style gave the Atlas a jerky, “staccato-like” effect on film, ILM found this movement acceptable because of the Atlas' mechanical nature. The Terrain Armored Transport is an assault walker used by Imperial ground forces to blast through enemy lines with its sheer mass and firepower and deploy platoons of crack assault troops.

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The thick armor plating on the AT-AT will deflect or absorb anything but the heaviest turbo laser weaponry. Standing over 22 meters (72 ft) tall, the AT-AT is as much a weapon of terror as anything else, and its mere presence is often enough to intimidate the local populace into obedience.

Its prodigious height also helps the walker see over obstacles and provides a clear line of sight for its weaponry, carried in its heavily-armored head. A pair of Class II heavy laser cannons mounted in the head's “chin” can be fired in quick succession or simultaneously for a single, power blast, and can engage targets from many kilometers away; on either side of the “temples” are mounted medium repeating blasters and targeting rangefinders.

When it comes time to deploy, troops carried in the AT-AT exit out of the sides via harness-and-cable from extendable boom racks while speeder bikes exit out the front and back using harnesses. AT-AT pilots receive specialized training in order to operate their walkers, using terrain sensors in the head and foot pads to find sure footing, and as such warrant extra layers of protection and long-lasting power packs in their life-support suits.

Although imposing, these weapons of terror have a number of design flaws. Their size makes them conspicuous targets, especially on open terrain, and while they can navigate most rugged ground certain features such as steep hillsides or swamps can impede them.

Their high center of gravity and unstable legs also make them susceptible to tripping. And while largely impervious to attack, their neck and underbelly are vulnerable to blasters and missiles.

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(Source: www.vg247.com)

In the Battle of Both, General Veers leads a group of Atlas and Artists dubbed Blizzard Force in the attack on the Rebels' Echo Base, as only slow-moving ground vehicles can penetrate the base's shield system. During the battle, the AT-AT designated Blizzard 2 is destroyed when Wedge Antilles and Was Jason use their snowspeeder's tow cable to trip it up and target it's now-exposed neck with blaster fire to blow it up.

Luke Skywalker destroys another AT-AT, Blizzard 4, by using a harpoon gun to reach its underbelly, cut open a hole with his lightsaber and throw in a grenade. Ultimately the Empire is victorious as General Veer's Blizzard 1 destroys the shield generator, and in the ensuing rout he orders the remaining Atlas and Artists to overrun the Rebels' trenches and capture as many as possible.

A ruined AT-AT appears in Star Wars : The Force Awakens as the makeshift home of the scavenger Rey on the planet Jack. Using scavenged parts from the walker and other vehicles, Rey is able to construct a power system for her home along with booby traps and motion sensors to deter potential thieves.

Information in the AT-AT's manifest reveal it was designated Hellhound 2, part of the complement of the Star Destroyer Interrogator, but the ultimate fate of its crew is unknown. The First Order uses an updated model of the AT-AT during the Battle of Craft at the end of Star Wars : The Last Jedi.

Built by Kuat-Entralla Drive Yards, these versions of the venerable AT-AT address some of the stability issues that plagued the Imperial walkers. They also use lighter armor material to add additional layers of protection and address weak points without increasing weight.

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(Source: theverybesttop10.com)

Maximum speed90 km/h (56 mph) PowerHigh-density power cells HeightPopulation volume All Terrain Scout Transport (AT-ST) is a two-legged much walker introduced briefly in The Empire Strikes Back and featured extensively in Return of the Jedi. These vehicles were designed to screen and protect the flanks of slower moving Atlas and the larger tanks used by the Empire.

Due to their design and movement, they are often dubbed as a chicken walker “. An AT-ST also appears briefly in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, patrolling Jed ha City following an attack by Saw Gerrera's forces.

A modified AT-ST later appears in The Mandalorian under the possession of a group of raiders, as the Empire has ceased to exist by the time of the series. Video games such as Star Wars : Rogue Squadron and Shadows of the Empire (in a much expanded Battle of Both) include numerous Artists, and these can be destroyed by direct shooting from the player's craft, in contrast to the heavily armored Atlas which have to be tripped by tow cables.

A single AT-ST makes a brief appearance in The Empire Strikes Back alongside the larger Atlas during the Battle of Both. The AT-ST was meant to have more screen time; however, one scene depicting a snow speeder shooting at the AT-ST model was ruined when the set's background shifted.

For Return of the Jedi, ILM made the AT-ST design more detailed. Director Richard Maryland and producer Robert Watts had cameos as AT-ST operators for the scene in which Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew) and a pair of Woks commandeer an AT-ST.

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(Source: theforce.net)

Lee Sale sued Lucasfilm in the mid-1980s, claiming that the AT-ST infringed on his copyright on what he called a “Martian Strider”, which he said he created in 1976 or 1977. The case was dismissed with the court noting that not only did Sale not produce the supposed drawings at trial, but that the copyright came one year after The Empire Strikes Back debuted.

According to Star Wars sources, the in-universe development of the AT-ST can be traced back to earlier walker models like the AT-RT and AT-DP. Constructed as a companion to the larger AT-AT, the scout walker's lightweight bipedal design allows it to travel across rugged ground and fulfill a variety of missions, including patrolling, reconnaissance and mop-up operations.

During major ground combat, Artists protect the flanks of Atlas and hunt down any infantry or smaller threats which evade the assault walkers. A powerful gyro stabilizer, sophisticated shock absorbers, and terrain-measuring sensors in the foot pads allow the scout walker to move faster and traverse areas which would be impassible to an AT-AT.

Standard weaponry includes a chin-mounted twin medium blaster cannon, with a twin light blaster cannon and a concussion grenade launcher on either side of the head. Artists may carry different side-mounted weapons, such as a light blaster cannon and/or concussion missile launcher.

Artists are crewed by two pilots, one who controls the weaponry while the other drives the walker. Their uniforms include fire-resistant boots, jumpsuits over basic armor plating, and crew helmets with attached telemetry receiver units.

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(Source: auctionet.com)

In order to achieve its speed and size, the AT-ST is forced to sacrifice offensive and defensive capability. It's chin-mounted blasters are only effective out to 2 km (1.2 mi), while the side-mounted weaponry has less range.

Lightweight armor plating is proof against blasters and other small arms, but cannot withstand heavier laser cannons and missiles. In The Empire Strikes Back, Artists scout for and provide support for the slower Atlas during the Battle of Both ; when the shield generator is destroyed, they race ahead of the assault walkers to capture as many of the fleeing Rebels as possible.

During the ground skirmish of the Battle of Vendor in Return of the Jedi, after initially inflicting heavy casualties on the Rebels and Woks, several Artists are destroyed when they prove highly vulnerable to the Woks' primitive booby traps, with one crushed between two large tree trunks swung on ropes. Another is hijacked thanks to Chewbacca climbing aboard and using his strength to rip open its roof hatch; he proceeds to turn its weapons against the other Artists to help win the battle.

An updated model of the AT-ST is used by the First Order during the Battle of Craft in The Last Jedi. Based on the classic Imperial scout walker, this version boasts improved stability and greater protection thanks to new lightweight armor plating.

In episode 208 of MythBusters, the Build Team (Grant Sahara, Kari Byron and Tory Belle tested the plausibility of the scene in Return of the Jedi wherein a swinging log trap destroyed an AT-ST. The team determined that the logs in the scene each weighed approximately 10,000 lb (4,500 kg) and were swung at a 45-degree angle at the walker, impacting with the energy equivalent of around two megajoules.

(Source: theverybesttop10.com)

To test this in real life, the team created a swinging log rig out of telephone poles and, after shoring the structure up with steel reinforcement, swung replica logs at an armored truck. The team declared the myth plausible when the logs succeeded in punching the truck's side panels off its frame.

Conceived by Ryan Church as a predecessor to the AT-AT, the AT-TE's animation for Attack of the Clones was supervised by Rob Coleman. Tom St. Amanda, who worked on the AT-AT scenes in The Empire Strikes Back, provided his experience to create a similar appearance for the AT-TE.

States first appeared in Attack of the Clones during the Battle of Genesis, where they serve as both assault vehicles and infantry transports for the Grand Army of the Republic. It's in-universe manufacturer is Dothan Heavy Engineering, a subsidiary of Kurt Drive Yards and long-time enemy to the Trade Federation and Techno Union.

A total of 2,160 States were deployed in the battle, airlifted across the battlefield by special LAST /c carriers to engage Separatist forces. The walker's unique six-legged design and flexible midsection gives it excellent stability and allows it to traverse otherwise impassible terrain.

Its foot pads contain terrain sensors and tractor-field generators which enhance its purchase on rough ground. A turret-mounted mass driver cannon atop the AT-TE has a low rate of fire but can be used to bombard fixed emplacements or shoot down slow-moving aircraft.

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Six turret-mounted laser cannons, four on the front of the hull and two in the rear, defend it against enemy infantry. The AT-TE's conductive armor spreads heat to minimize penetration from enemy fire, and is well-shielded against electromagnetic pulse and ion cannon weapons.

The AT-TE carries two squads of clone troopers into battle, with seating split between the front and rear sections of the walker. These are connected by a flexible “concertina” section which also houses the walker's power generators.

In the Star Wars Rebels second season episode Relics of the Old Republic, a heavily customized AT-TE is used by clone troopers Rex, Wolfe and Gregor as a mobile residence on the planet Seems. Modifications made to the walker include renovating the interior to make room for bunk beds and a kitchen, and replacing the main cannon with rod and reel for catching the planet's wildlife.

Many vehicles were created for various Star Wars media and depicted as technological evolutionary predecessors and successors to the walkers featured in the original trilogy. Utilized by the Republic, Empire and First Order All Terrain Attack Pod (AT-AP): Featured in Revenge of the Sith and Clone Wars media, as a variation of the AT-PT.

Alex Jaeger designed the AT-AP per Lucas' request to “diversify the Clone armor”. All Terrain Open Transport (AT-OT): Introduced in Revenge of the Sith and other sources, is a heavily armored transport whose open design makes it vulnerable to above.

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The AT-OT can transport 34 clone troopers, who are protected by thick armor and four laser cannons. During the late stages of Revenge of the Sith's development, it was called the “Clone CAT walker “.

All Terrain Recon Transports (AT-RT): Introduced in Revenge of the Sith operated by clone troopers searching for Yoda (Frank Oz) on Kashyyyk. A scene cut from Revenge of the Sith would have shown Yoda distracting clone troopers while Chewbacca removes them from their AT-RT in a manner similar to how he obtains control of an AT-ST in Return of the Jedi.

All Terrain Defense Pod (AT-DP): Introduced in Star Wars Rebels, the AT-DP is described by Star Wars references as a successor to the AT-RT, combining speed with an armored cockpit to protect a pilot and gunner. Standing 11.6 m (38 ft) high and weighing 11,200 kg (24,700 lb), the AT-DP can reach speeds of 90 km/h (56 mph).

Because it is only armed with a single Kyoto Maad-38 heavy laser cannon, the Empire primarily uses AT-DPs for defensive purposes like policing or sentry duty. All Terrain Mobile Artillery (AT-MA): Introduced in The Force Awakens, the AT-MA is a model of quadruped base defense walker used by the First Order to defended Star killer Base.

Several of these walkers were deployed across the planet to protect its installations, and at least three of them were present during General Armitage Hux's speech before the destruction of the Bosnian system. Several Atoms were portrayed in the ground vehicles storage area of a Resurgent -class Star Destroyer.

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(Source: www.starburstmagazine.com)

All Terrain Armored Cargo Transport (AT-ACT): Introduced in Rogue One, these walkers are slightly larger than the standard AT-AT, with a hollowed-out center section that can hold a cargo container. Director Gareth Edwards instructed the film's concept artists to design walkers based on their idealized memory of the AT-AT.

According to background material, the AT-ACT was built for hauling cargo at Imperial construction sites and research facilities. Although not meant for use on the battlefield, the AT-ACT is heavily armored against most handheld weapons and equipped with two Tail & Back MS-2 heavy laser cannons, allowing it to be deployed into combat in an emergency.

This cannon is described as being powerful enough to punch through deflector shields rated to withstand planetary bombardments. The walker's front legs are meant to support the weight of the cannon and withstand its recoil, which combined with its hunched back gives it the overall appearance of a simian.

All Terrain Heavy Scout (AT-HS): A model of walker fielded by the First Order. The LEGO version of the AT-HS was based on a piece of concept art for The Last Jedi which, although canon, was ultimately not used in the final cut of the film.

The AT-PT is equipped with two blaster cannons, a concussion grenade launcher, and an array of sensors. Mountain Terrain Armored Transport (MT-AT): Introduced in Jedi Academy Trilogy, dubbed “spider walkers”, are octrupedalism specially for mountain terrain.

(Source: fondos.io)

All Terrain Anti-Aircraft (AT-AA): Featured in various Expanded Universe media, is a four-legged anti-aircraft vehicle used by the Galactic Empire. DK Publishing's Attack of the Clones: Incredible Cross-Sections book mentions an Terrain Heavy Enforcer.

Barr, Patricia; Bray, Adam; Jones, Matt; Horton, Cole; Wallace, Daniel; Wind ham, Ryder (2019). Dougherty, Kerri; Fry, Jason; Hidalgo, Pablo; Reynolds, David West; Saxon, Curtis; Wind ham, Ryder (2020).

Luce no, James; Reynolds, David West; Wind ham, Ryder; Fry, Jason; Hidalgo, Pablo (2018). Land, Kristin; Beecroft, Simon; Dougherty, Kerri; Luce no, James; Fry, Jason (2016).

How Star Wars Conquered the Universe: The Past, Present, and Future of a Multibillion Dollar Franchise (e-book). “35 Years After Star Wars, Effects Whiz Phil Tippet Is Slowly Crafting a Mad God”.

^ a b “All Terrain Attack Pod (AT-AP walker) (Expanded Universe)”. ^ “All Terrain Open Transport (AT-OT walker) (Expanded Universe)”.

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(Source: fondos.io)

^ Barr, Patricia; Bray, Adam; Jones, Matt; Horton, Cole; Wallace, Daniel; Wind ham, Ryder (2019). ^ Star Wars : Episode VII The Force Awakens”.

“This Week's Cover: New details on the new Star Wars stand-alone film 'Rogue One “. ^ Walker (2018), p. 65 ^ Barr, et al. (2019), p. 326 ^ Walker (2018), p. 66 ^ Barr, et al. (2019), p. 341 ^ Luce no, James; Reynolds, David West; Wind ham, Ryder; Fry, Jason; Hidalgo, Pablo (2018).

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