The TIE/In Interceptor is the standard-issue fighter craft of the Vast Empire Fleet. Considered to be the finest mass-production space superiority craft ever produced by the Galactic Empire, it is faster, more agile and packs twice the firepower of its predecessor, the TIE/ln Starfighter. A highly aggressive craft, it was designed to hunt down enemy fighters and bombers, and destroy them. It was Emperor Palpatine’s dream to replace all TIE/Ln Starfighters with Interceptors, and the Vast Empire has made that dream a reality.
It is more agile than any other mass-production Starfighter in history, and the only thing that can outrun it in a straight line is the New Republic's A-Wing Interceptor (which has only half the firepower). It is a speed demon with a nasty punch, but its true strength lies in the simple fact that it is very cheap to produce, very easy to maintain, and a breeze to repair (the whole thing is modular, so it is in fact cheaper and quicker to just replace the part).
Designed purely to hunt down and kill enemy fighters and bombers, it was armed with no less than six rapid-fire laser cannons, allowing it to put down a withering stream of blasterfire. It did not carry any heavier weaponry, because it did not need to – Imperial doctrine has always emphasises combined-arms tactics: Whilst the TIE/In Interceptor annihilates enemy fighters, TIE/sa Bombers and capital ships eliminate anything the Interceptor’s laser cannons cannot.
As it lacks any hyperdrive or life support systems, it is reliant on carrier ships in order to travel significant distances. This means that anyone flying a TIE/In Interceptor knows they will have capital ship support or a home base nearby.
The direct descendant of Darth Vader’s feared TIE Advanced x1, the TIE/In Interceptor is the final production version of the TIE Advanced series. After disastrous defeats at the hands of Rebel Alliance T-65 X-Wing Starfighters, the Empire realized that they needed a superior craft, one that would bring the balance of power back into their favour. Sienar Fleet Systems looked to the TIE Advanced x1 and the prototypes of its successor, the TIE/ad Avenger, for inspiration.
Though the Avenger was far too expensive for mass production, the advancements to the Twin Ion Engine and the Solar Ionization Reactor were carried on into the new model, as were the intimidating dagger-shaped solar panel ‘wings’ and the four wingtip L-s9.3 laser cannons. Stripping out the life support, shields and hyperdrive from the TIE/ad gave the new prototype unparalleled speed, agility and power for its weapons for only a fraction of the cost – and made the new fighter a smaller target than any Imperial fighter yet made.
The newly minted TIE/In Interceptor did everything it was meant to and more. At only a fraction of the cost of the Alliance’s X-Wing, the Empire now had a space superiority fighter that could match it in firepower and fly circles around it – astonishing successes during Operation Strike Fear and Operation Skyhook cemented its place in the Imperial Navy, and Emperor Palpatine himself planned to replace all TIE Fighters with the new, deadly TIE/In Interceptor. At the time of the Battle of Endor, the new TIE Interceptor made up fully 20% of the Imperial Starfighter Corps’s craft.
THE TIE/IN TODAY - THE VAST EMPIRE'S MK.IIEdit
The Vast Empire, lacking the manpower of the Galactic Empire of old, was unable to find pilots to man the sheer number of TIE/In Interceptors that they had in stock, and scrapping the majority of their fighters was out of the question. Seeking to find a middle ground between the mass-produced TIE/In and the prohibitively expensive TIE/ad, the Vast Empire’s techs upgraded the craft in order to make up for the shortfall in numbers.
The TIE/In Mk.II, as the Vast Empire calls it, is a halfway point between the original TIE/In and the elite TIE/ad. The first priority was to install a shield generator in the smaller craft. Fortunately, the Vast Empire had the schematics for the Novaldex Shield Generator used in the TIE/ad, and were able to install them into their machines. The addition of a pair of M-g-2 Warhead Launchers gave the craft some versatility and increased punch against the new B-Wings of the Rebellion.
The power required to run these new systems in such a small craft was simply more than the dagger-shaped solar panels could safely radiate, and so the Vast Empire techs affixed four ‘wing’ panels to make up for this shortcoming – lending the Vast Empire’s TIE Interceptors a completely unique appearance. Although slightly less speedy and agile than the mass-production model, the Vast Empire has given their standard-issue craft more survivability and more firepower, making the Mk.II an elegant killing machine.
- SFS L-29.3 Laser Cannon The primary armament of the TIE/In MK II are four L-s9.3 laser cannons built into the wingtips of the craft. Able to punch through shields and melt away armour with ease, these short-ranged weapons are more than a match for most starfighters, able to destroy the TIE/In’s traditional foe (the X-Wing) with just a couple of direct hits. These lasers can be set to fire individually for a continuous stream of rapid-fire, or can be linked to fire two at a time for a balance between fire rate and damage, or linked so all four fire together for enough power to kill an X-Wing in a single, well-placed shot.
- M-g-2 General Purpose Warhead Launcher The lasers are powerful, but some craft such as the B-Wing bomber of the New Republic and the elite TIE Defender pack deflector shields that can shrug them off. It is to this end that the MK II mounts a pair of M-g-2 General Purpose Warhead launchers in the ball cockpit’s ‘chin cannon’ mounts. Able to hold four high-speed Concussion Missiles, three powerful Proton Torpedoes or two extremely destructive Proton Rockets each, the launchers give the MK II a considerable boost in destructive power, but more importantly, they give it versatility.
- Novaldex Shield GeneratorThe Vast Empire knew that it was not the only faction with access to TIE Interceptors, the only mass-production craft able to match the MKII turn-for-turn, and these fighters boast powerful laser weaponry. In order to combat this threat, all MKII’s have Novaldex Shield Generators installed. These project a deflector field around the craft, protecting it from lasers to some degree. These shields can be focused in any one direction for maximum protection, or balanced all around the craft for maximum coverage.
- HIGH MANOEUVRABILITY The original TIE/In Interceptor relied purely on its amazing agility and the skill of its pilot for protection, and the MKII is still agile enough to outmanoeuvre anything that isn’t a TIE/In or part of the elite TIE Advanced family. Deflector shields only protect against lasers, so the MKII’s only weaponry against concussion missiles and proton torpedoes is the thing that made the craft famous – its manoeuvrability. You cannot be destroyed if your opponent cannot hit you, and this is something at which the TIE/In has always excelled.
- Credit to Wookieepedia for the above information
- Credit to Ansel Hsaio (Fractalsponge) for TIE Interceptor infobox picture.
- Credit to Lucasarts for cut-away picture.