TIE fighter

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The TIE/In starfighter, commonly known as the TIE fighter (for Twin Ion Engine), is the third most plentiful commodity in the galaxy, after hydrogen and stupidity. It was the chief Imperial strike fighter, with varying designs built to accommodate all applicable strategies. Although the foremost Imperial design, it was outclassed by the more versatile X-wing. The Republic of Coruscant fields both designs, TIE fighters relegated to Highway Space Patrol while the Republic Naval and Air Forces utilize more versatile craft; X-wing pilots commonly deride the TIE fighter as "the space kite".

Primary armament consists of a pair of laser cannons, powerful enough that a well-placed hit on a starfighter or medium transport could damage or destroy it. It does not carry missile tubes by default, but such weapons can be added on if necessary.

Due to the lack of life-support systems, each TIE pilot wears a fully-sealed flight suit. The absence of a hyperdrive also renders the fighter totally dependent on carrier ships when deployed in enemy systems. TIE/lns also lack landing gear, another mass-reducing measure. While the ships are structurally capable of "sitting" on their wings, they are not designed to land or disembark their pilots without special support.

Variants

TIE Advanced

Prototype intended as the replacement for the default design. Although it never made it to mass production, it remained the personal fighter of Darth Vader. The design features increased firepower, better structural integrity, and a limited hyperdrive.

TIE Interceptor

Improved design identifiable by its arrow-shaped solar collection panels that increased pilot visibility while reducing profile. The original schematics featured six laser cannons (one on each wing tip and two under the cockpit), replaced by blaster cannons in later models. The Interceptor features greatly increased speed, nearly bringing it to par with the A-wing.

TIE bomber

A general-purpose bomber variant designed for precision strikes against capital ships and ground targets. It features better sensors than the standard TIE fighter, but is slower and requires an escort.