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Old 02-08-2006, 08:35 PM   #6
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Join Date: Nov 1997
Location: The Dawn of Time
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Basically we're stuck with the official explanation that the armor is awesome, the troops are awesome, but in the movies they suck. I guess it's a combination of character shields, plot/drama requirements and other non-suspension of disbelief stuff.

You could say the quality of training and armor budget went down after the Empire was established in its power, and the "Will of the Force" and other stuff. Perhaps there was a burecratic screw-up and Palpy actually sent his WORST TROOPS (not "best" troops) to Endor... Saying the troops were overconfident and un-prepared and the Ewoks and Rebels were just AWESOME as well as lucky is fine I suppose. I like the explanation that the clones were old men by this time.

It's been argued that no body armor will ever stop everything you could throw at it in the field, which is true. However, that the Empire can't design armor to resist stone-age arrows fired by midget creatures from bows and blunt trauma from sticks and stone-age axes handled by said creatures stretches it quite a bit. At least these primitive attacks shouldn't be able to take a Trooper out of the fight (even if we assume every single Trooper hit in such a way was not killed) in 1-2 hits like we see. We know they CAN design better stuff, at least according to the EU. Just about every Imperial unit that wears armor besides Stormtroopers and Scouts are listed as having "superior" armor. We even have super-hard Darktroopers. Arguing cost prohibitive also ignores the sheer size and resources of the Empire. We're forced to think they just didn't care about losing their men (which really doesn't make sense with Clones that take so long to replace). And yet the much more cash-strapped Rebels can afford some of this stuff... or else the protection they DO give their troopers doesn't seem to help anymore than not having it (so the Rebels are just fine to do without!). I mean if you're out to save money, and your trooper's armor doesn't help, why not just ditch it altogether? Just give them uniforms like the Imp Officers, with different rank markings...

Of course the "big dumb, army of doom" cliche in sci fantasy has to be upheld somehow...

Even if the Empire was using all recruited non-clones by this time (rather than "shanghaing a few guys here and there" like Lucas says was happening by this time), the Empire could still have afforded to recruit the best, so that's really no excuse. They also could have afforded to outfit their TIE Fighters with shields and hyperdrive quite easily. A lot of the handicaps given to the Empire's forces in the EU really forgets just how massive a galaxy-wide Empire that can build all these Super-Weapons in such a short time would be. Unless they really were just a step away from bankrupt... but still!

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