GALACTIC CIVIL WAR
After the destruction of the first Death Star, Princess Leia’s rebel cell abandoned its headquarters on Yavin 4 and began a long, frustrating search for a location where they’d be safe from detection by the Empire.
The Rebels thought Hoth was an ideal location -- a remote ice planet supposedly devoid of human life. They established Echo Base and began enlarging ice caverns and adapting their transports to the extreme cold of Hoth. To guard against discovery by Imperial probe droids, Rebel scouts patrolled the area around Echo Base on tauntauns, native bipedal lizards that could withstand the planet’s frigid conditions.
During one such recon mission, Commander Luke Skywalker was viciously attacked by a prowling wampa. He survived the encounter thanks to the Force and Han Solo, but only barely. Echo Base’s Rebels faced other perils as well. A probe droid discovered the Rebel equipment and sent imagery back to the Empire before it was destroyed. General Rieekan ordered an immediate evacuation, but the Empire arrived in force before the Rebels could escape. At the Battle of Hoth, massive AT-AT walkers engaged the Alliance’s snowspeeders and ground troops. Though key Rebel leaders managed to escape capture, the battle was a costly defeat for the Alliance.
The All Terrain Armored Transport, or AT-AT walker, is a four-legged transport and combat vehicle used by the Imperial ground forces. 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 stationed on Hoth, the Rebel Alliance modified T-47 airspeeders to become snowspeeders, fast flying conveyances for patrol and defense of their hidden base. It took some doing to keep the crippling cold from permanently grounding their airforce, but Rebel ingenuity overcame the relentless Hoth elements. The T-47 airspeeder is a small, wedge-shaped craft with two forward-facing laser cannons. In its rear arc is a harpoon gun fitted with a heavy-duty tow cable. The snowspeeder is a two-man vessel, with a pilot and rear-facing tailgunner.
The Rebel Alliance stood bravely against the evil of the Galactic Empire, never backing down despite overwhelming odds. Formed from resistance movements that arose during the Clone Wars, the Rebellion worked in secret for decades to overthrow the Emperor and restore democracy to the galaxy. Eventually, armed with the firepower of ships like the X-wing and A-wing, and the leadership of figures including Princess Leia and Admiral Ackbar, the Rebel Alliance triumphed over the Empire at the Battle of Endor.
Specially designed for deep space exploration and reconnaissance, probe droids are employed in science and military applications. Tenacious hunters and searchers, probe droids (or probots) have a variety of sensors, and the ones employed by the Empire are armed with powerful blasters and, in some models, shields. Upon arrival at their target location, they gather information. If confronted after their main mission has been completed these droids can self-destruct. Imperial probes are vaguely arachnid in shape, with a dark metal finish, bulbous sensor "eyes" and spindly manipulator arms.
Tauntauns are a species of snow lizard found roaming the windswept snow plains of Hoth. The Rebel Alliance domesticated the swift creature during their stay on the ice planet, and used the animals for patrol duties outside Echo Base. The animals came in useful as the Rebel technicians had difficulty adapting their repulsorlift speeders to the subzero temperatures. Though tauntauns are sure-footed and well equipped to handle Hoth's daytime temperature, the chilling extremes of a Hoth night will prove deadly.