Venator-class Star Destroyer

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The Venator Mark I
Class overview
Builders: Kuat Drive Yards
Operators:  Republic of Coruscant
Type: Destroyer, Frigate,
Command Ship
Complement: 2,000 troops

The Venator-class Star Destroyer (from Latin Venator; "Hunter"), also known as the Venator-class Destroyer, Republic attack cruiser, and later Imperial attack cruiser, was one of the capital ships used extensively by the Galactic Republic during the later parts of the Clone Wars, as well as by the Galactic Empire. It was designed and constructed by Kuat Drive Yards.

Venator warships were fast enough to pursue blockade runners, while also being large enough to lead independent operations. They could be used to land troops on planetary surfaces and serve as escorts for the larger battleships, but their primary role was as mainline cruisers and starfighter carriers. As ships of the line, they were often grouped in lines of three to four ships. The Venator was the most popular capital ship of the Republic in the prequel trilogy, although shortly after the formation of the New Order, it was eclipsed by designs inspired by the Victory-class. Despite this, Venators were used to great effect in the early years of the Empire, although they were stripped of the colorful markings of the Republic models.

The Poker Alice (not to scale) above Antarctica

Eventually, more robust vessels such as the Imperator- and Tector-class became favored, and the Venator and its variants were phased out. This was partially due to its over-reliance on starfighters, as it went against the prevailing Tarkin Doctrine.

After the end of the Clone Wars, many Republic Venators were abandoned and left to drift in space. Several of these vessels fell into the hands of third parties and various pirate groups. Although the vessel was considered obsolete, it was available to buy from several merchants who gained the ships after the Empire sold many of them as scrap metal, becoming a popular second-hand starship. A number of Venators were recommissioned by the Coruscanti Loyalists during the Avatar Wars.

See also