TIE Decimator

Action Fleet custom (1/71)

 

 

Completely original design/story

♦ Opening cockpit

♦ Removable engine cover

♦ Detailed engine interior

♦ Poseable TIE Pilot

Construction

This was a fun model I did as a cross-over between the Jedi Interceptors and the TIE Interceptors. For it, I used an AF TIE Interceptor, and glued on wings from the Revell TIE Interceptor model. I used the AF version’s rear knob as an engine hatch, adding detail to what I think the TIE interior looks like.

The color is a mixture of grey and blue, which I sprayed after masking off the solar panels. The rest of the detail was hand painted in various colors. Like most Imperial craft, this one has no weathering. It was designed to look clean like most Imperial vessels.

Backstory

In an effort to create more mission-specific TIE variants, Imperial tacticians demanded the inception of a hit-and-run starfighter capable of crippling isolated space installations and capital ships. Before the TIE Interceptor went into the production phase, Sienar Fleet Systems used a prototype as the basis for a new craft. With an overhaul to the power system and solar converters, engineers created what was to be called the TIE Decimator.

The new TIE variant incorporated a better energy conversion system, which meant an increased power gain from each solar cell. In addition, the TIE Decimator added an energy storage matrix granting it the one of the longest flight times of any TIE-series fighter. Propulsion systems remained the same twin-ion design as previous TIE variants, but power constraints reduced the speed of the TIE Decimator slightly.

For offense, the TIE Decimator was the first TIE model to utilize military-grade turbolasers. These light turbolasers were less powerful than capital ship batteries, but still packed enough firepower to penetrate shields of larger Corellian freighters. The two turbolasers flanked the cockpit viewport similar to the older Eta-2 Actis Interceptor, a forerunner of the TIE-series. In addition to the light turbolasers, engineers placed an integrated sensor masking/jamming system under the TIE Decimator’s cockpit allowing the craft to approach installations nearly undetected. Once detected, the jamming system made it nearly impossible for enemy ships to lock on, which benefited TIE Decimator pilots, as the ship lacked deflector shields. Finally, the TIE Decimator featured two outboard ion cannons for crippling electronic systems. Because of the enormous power requirements, pilots could only use one set of weapons at a time by diverting power to either the wing ion cannons or the inner-mounted turbolasers. This method proved effective because the pilots could coordinate attacks having some fighters charge turbolasers for direct assaults and other fighters charge ion cannons for surgical strikes.

The Empire used TIE Decimators as quick strike fighters. Cruisers would deploy two to three fighters on the edge of a system. The pilots would then charge their sensor mask and speed over to the enemy installation. Pilots would then bombard the station’s shields with turbolaser blasts. Once the shields were down, pilots were trained to strike targets in a sequential order with their ion cannons, usually communications towers first, followed by shield generators, and hyperdrive systems if applicable. The pilots would switch back to their turbolasers for quick blasts to capital ship defenses, such as turbolaser batteries, starfighter staging areas, and warhead launchers. The Imperial Navy instructed pilots to ignore starfighter defenses because the onboard jamming system should protect them. Imperial capital ships would then move in to capture the target. The TIE Decimators would remain active to eliminate any escaping crew. Their ion cannons proved very effective against escape pods and small personnel transports.

Most TIE Decimator squadrons were seconded to smaller warships, as the larger star destroyers preferred frontal assaults and had no need for the quick assault tactics of the TIE Decimator. However, several star destroyers in the Outer Rim sectors had a small compliment of TIE Decimators to reduce the frequency of repairs, which could be lengthy for large capital ships.

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