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Grimace
4 January 2003, 04:25 PM
Okay, a recent thread brought this topic back into the forefront of my mind. I normally don't go off on a rant, but this time I will.

It always gets my goat when people generalize stormtroopers are being inept or bumbling fools. People seem too content to point out things like the stormtrooper bashing his head on the door, or their defeat at Endor, but very few people ever look at the capture of Princess Leia's ship or the route of the Rebel's at Hoth.

Stormtroopers are not inept. They're feared because they win more than they lose (although they obviously didn't win the important ones) and against your common "joe" in Star Wars, those guys in white can do some serious stomping.

So, as a person that's always kind of liked the Empire, and those "feared" stormtroopers, I'd kindly ask that people remember that those armored guys DID win some battles in the movies. I dislike the way they went out as much as the next Imperial sympathizer, but they're far from inept at what they do.

Reverend Strone
4 January 2003, 05:37 PM
Generally whenever we've seen STs in action it's against our heroes in the films. I'd submit that that isn't indicative of their general succes rate as soldiers and enforcers of the policies of the Empire. I'm betting that against joe-average galactic citizen a ST is a very deadly adversary.

Their typification as bumbling or inept is largely due to the fact that we see them getting used as cannon fodder for the heroes for much of their screen time. As Grimace so correctly points out, these guys are far from ineffectual. They're the front line of the Empire's might, and out there beating it for the New Order every day.

I say give the boys in white a break.

mojo1701
4 January 2003, 05:55 PM
I agree with both of you 110%, Grimace and Reverend Strone. I mean, Luke, Leia, Han, Chewie, and any other of the heroes wouldn't be heroes if anyone could defeat soldiers who are "supposed" to be feared throughout the galaxy. That's also why they are seen as cannon fodder.

The Imperial Armed Forces remind me of a cross between ancient Roman soldiers and Nazi soldiers.

If you need more explanation on what I mean, I'll be glad to explain.

Lord Byss
4 January 2003, 06:16 PM
Agreed. But not only do they kick the average joes ass, they kick their Rebel counterparts ass too. Tantive and Hoth were total slaughters. The only time they lose is to the best smuggler in the galaxy, a jedi, and a walking dismemberment machine. Hell, I think they do ok considering...
8o

Jim Williams
5 January 2003, 06:21 AM
Stormtroopers board the Tantive IV against prepared defenders, most of whom are kneeling or taking cover. Battle begins....results? Uncountable number of dead Rebels strewn all over the hallway and TWO downed stormtroopers at the entrance.

Krad-edis
5 January 2003, 06:30 AM
I just wanted to comment on how hard it is to find people who are "immune to bribes, blackmailing, or seduction". These are not your typical soldiers. They are professional brainwashed warriors, and against starting heroes, they are extremely dangerous. Especially since they rarely travel alone.

Sure, Han Solo blasted plenty of the Stormies that the Emperor said were part of his best legion, but that was Han Solo. My starting smuggler would have been dogmeat in that situation, and as most everyone has pointed out before, they are not to be underestimated. The movie heroes made them look bad, because they were so good.

Vanger Chevane
5 January 2003, 06:36 AM
are also at least alluded to be the best of the Imperial Army, excepting the Imperial Guards & SpecNav.

A US .mil equivalent would be some of the frontline Marine Units. Hardcore Veterans who know what they're doing.

The Guards & SpecNav can be compare to the Rangers and SEALs, respectively.

Krad-edis
5 January 2003, 06:46 AM
Well, when I was still in the service (USMC, beleive it or not, I had a very large group of Marines who played Star Wars with me), we were talking about Stormies and it was not really there fighting ability that is so scary. It is them and there dedication and loyalty to the Emperor, and the fact that even if a really good looking girl (I mean, really really good looking) comes and offers them a bribe to not investigate Rebel activity, they will probably blast her (what a waste), investigate and step over the bribe credits and not even look at them. For crying out loud, even a Jedi (Anakin) can be seduced by power (my opinion is that she seduced him without even trying. he really did not seem to act rational around her), and good looking Senators from Naboo.

Not Stormtroopers. Every attempt to bribe, seduce, or blackmail instantly fails with deadly consequences. These are some rough fighters (especially veteran Stormtroopers), and I find their numbers and dedication very intimidating.

Ravager_of_worlds
6 January 2003, 08:14 AM
While i've never been known as a rebel sympathizer (hail palpatine!), i have been dismayed when i see the loyal frontline soldiers of the Empire being called "bucketheads". Those rebel scum fear stormtroopers. Even Kenobi remarks on their accuracy for blaster fire.

When i see the loyal stormtroopers being made fools of on the film, i grate my teeth at the power of the one called G. Lucas. Obviously, those stormtroopers who missed Solo and that walking carpet Chewbacca had just gotten up in the morning and needed a cup of imperial coffee.

I'll point out that we never actually the 'heroes' confront a stormtrooper until deep in the bowels of the deathstar or on endor. they avoid stormtroopers because they know how good stormtroopers are.

We all know what would happen if interference from G. Lucas and his 'vision' were removed... heh... a happier and orderly galaxy.

:D

Vanger Chevane
6 January 2003, 01:36 PM
Obviously, those stormtroopers who missed Solo and that walking carpet Chewbacca had just gotten up in the morning and needed a cup of imperial coffee.

...but one of the ANH books mention that the Stormies Solo & Co. run into aboard DS1 are not frontline, experienced troops, but the REMF version.

Any trooper who had that miserable an aim in combat either wouldn't survive, or would be very quickly transferred to some "safe Rear Area" where image was more important than ability, or he'd turn in his Blaster Carbine and be issued Salad Shooter. :p

XavierDrgn
19 March 2003, 06:52 AM
Originally posted by Jim Williams
Stormtroopers board the Tantive IV against prepared defenders, most of whom are kneeling or taking cover. Battle begins....results? Uncountable number of dead Rebels strewn all over the hallway and TWO downed stormtroopers at the entrance.

i never understood(once i started playing SW)how that one happened. but of course watching a movie you realize it had to happen or no capture/escape of the plans! rationalizing i can say that maybe Vader's presence had something to do with it ,but thats reaching.

weve had similar encounters aboard starships and never got overrun. so either the stormies were really that good or Vader did a Fear in the rebels or something?? just my thoughts(as random as they are)

i too agree with most of you guys...Stormtroopers are a menace to the general populace but to us heros, they fall like little girls.

Taking cover
Xavier D'rgn:raised:

Darth_Cassed
19 March 2003, 07:28 AM
Well, goin back a bit here, I'd have to agree with Mojo.

Stormtroopers and the Empire in general is very similar to the Axis powers in WWII, not just the Nazis.

Macdeth
19 March 2003, 09:44 AM
In reference to Xavier D'rgn's comment...

I think it would be becoause the game is geared towards the PC/hero's winning. I mean a game wouldn't be any fun if you died every time you turned around.

But who knows...maybe Vader diddo some fear thing...or quided the bolts with the Force.

Would have been cool to see HIM take out thoes rebels himself though.

Rogue Janson
19 March 2003, 10:03 AM
I think it would be becoause the game is geared towards the PC/hero's winning. I mean a game wouldn't be any fun if you died every time you turned around.
I think that's spot on, and it applies to the films as well. You try running a game where your characters are professionals (in the d20 class sense) rather than heroes and you'll soon see why stormtroopers are feared.
They simply get a bad rep because they're outclassed when they come up against the heroic characters that are central to Star Wars.

Nova Spice
19 March 2003, 03:11 PM
I think that's spot on, and it applies to the films as well. You try running a game where your characters are professionals (in the d20 class sense) rather than heroes and you'll soon see why stormtroopers are feared.

That's so true. A squad of stormies against Professional classes or commoners (D20) is like the gates of hell being unleashed.

Personally, I feel that this is reflected in the films. We see stormtroopers succeed on the Tantive IV, during the initial invasion of Echo Base, and initially against the Rebel commando strike team on Endor.

I think that people have a misconception about stormtroopers, an unfair one IMO, because in the films, a common theme occurs that results in the stormies defeats. The element of surprise.

-On the Death Star, the stormtroopers in the detention center are tricked when Luke and Han pull the prisoner transfer scheme. I mean, that was a fairly believable bluff.
-When Han and Leia are attempting to escape Echo Base, the snowtroopers had already cleaned house. Unfortunately, how were they to know the Falcon had a light repeating blaster underneath it?
-When the strike team was captured on Endor, how were the stormies to know that a thousand furry aliens had been recruited to lead a counterattack?

Deception can be a powerful ally....as shown in all three films. ;)

Silent
19 March 2003, 04:20 PM
Still....against Ewoks? I'm guessing that ST immunities don't include immunity to the feeling of guilt you get when you contemplate blowing away a teddy bear!

On the other hand, I think that one of the reasons that Luke an Co. got away from the DS is because Vader had set a homing device on the Falcon and wanted them to escape after a bit of a fight. So no, these guys aren't clueless.

In games, I figure that the main reason why STs get dumbed down at the start is because GMs want to throw them at the players at level 1 as cannon fodder, which would just be suicide at their normal power. The temptation must be avoided however, because eventually STs become dog-biscuits, in total opposition to the way they're portrayed in the movies. I think this is hard to avoid because when you think of Imperial Soldier you think of Stormies, but there are plenty of people lower than them. Imperial Police officers at Thug 1 would be good for low level characters, while regular army troops around Thug 2-3 can be phased in as they get higher. Only when the players can handle this would it be good to send in the Stormies, maybe at Thug 3/ Sol 1-2, and watch them earn some whole new respect for the men in white!

Darth_Cassed
19 March 2003, 04:24 PM
You also must remember....

Textbook tactics and strategies are thrown out when the enemy uses guerilla warfare. That's why stormtroopers are so ineffective against rebels.

let's see here....revolutionary war....vietnam....the guerillas always get their way

Jace Aleron
21 March 2003, 11:31 AM
I know that the stormtroopers in the original got completely destroyed by a farmer, a princess, and a smuggler and his copilot, but they where supposed to be the elite of the Imperial Military, the equivalent of the U.S. Army Green Berets, or Navy SEALS, and I know it's fiction but the movies where about Luke, Han and the rest of them, and history is written by the victors. In my campains, I run Stormtroopers like the elite they are, at low levels my players don't come up against them unless something went very wrong, that is what the Imperial army and navy regulars are for. I doubt anyone will apriciate this, but I"ve designed stats for what I think StormTroopers are like. They are not the "thug" class cannon fodder that they are portreyed as in the rule book.

Darth_Cassed
21 March 2003, 11:39 AM
Well I think the point is that these people weren't normal people, they were heroes. They go above and beyond normal people's abilities at times of emergencies.

Faraer
21 March 2003, 12:18 PM
I'll refer again to the shot at the start of Episode IV where R2-D2 and C-3PO avoid dozens of blaster bolts as they cross a corridor. SW establishes how it works right at the start. Stormtroopers are ultra-competent and terrifying, but they are still drones, and hitting heroes is a TOTALLY different matter from hitting a target or ordinary Rebel troops.

Kryl'thar
21 March 2003, 01:07 PM
Maybe that scene of R2 and C3P0 crossing a corridor filled with blaster fire shows just how competent the troopers are. Sure they could of blasted the droids into atoms, but they were aiming at the rebels standing behind the camera. Really....that's what happened.

LanLarado
22 March 2003, 12:23 PM
Plus in Return of the Jedi the Stormtroopers manage to hit Leia in the arm. They also shoot R2-D2 in Episode IV and Episode VI. C-3PO is blown up during Episode V. All this proves the Imperials can make the shots but sometimes have some trouble following it up to the end.
:stormtpr:

Crymoon
2 April 2003, 05:59 AM
I've always seen ST as an elite troop like hardened veterans from fantasy settings, guys who could wipe the floor with three or four commoners. Their loyalty is second to none, but I wouldn't make them robots when talking about bribes etc. Some aren't as brainwashed as others..

An interesting idea came to my mind... when does this brainwashing process begin and end- Solo doesn't seem affected by it...

Nova Spice
4 April 2003, 07:38 PM
An interesting idea came to my mind... when does this brainwashing process begin and end- Solo doesn't seem affected by it...

Well Han was never in stormtrooper training; on the contrary, he was in the Imperial Naval Academy (the officer's corps specifically). The Empire doesn't brainwash its officers or its pilots (as evidenced by Tycho Celchu, Biggs Darklighter, Hobbie Klivian, and Commander Narra).

As far as the process beginning and ending, that's a really good question. I would imagine, if stormtroopers turn out to be clones, that they become brainwashed at the cloning facilities; otherwise I imagine they go through some sort of training that "hardens" them just prior to their graduation from the Military academies.

That's my two cents. ;) B)

Faraer
5 April 2003, 07:38 AM
It's totally confirmed and unambiguous that the stormtroopers of the Star Wars films are clones and were always intended so. In the EU, only some stormtroopers are clones because certain writers made mistakes and showed non-clone stormtroopers.

mojo1701
5 April 2003, 07:42 AM
I don't necessarily believe that all Stormtroopers were originally intended to be clones. But I guess that this is something that just developed, kinda like, "Hey, that's even better than what I originally planned!" type of thing.

Vanger Chevane
5 April 2003, 08:30 AM
It may not be any sort of brainwashing as much as indoctrination and Stormtrooper Society.

Look at the USMC. They have a set of traditions and internally-expected behavior that the Corps beats into your head from Basic Training onward.

Marines are expected by other Marines to be hard-charging troops, with a very high loyalty, morale, and Military Precision not only with a weapon, but also in many day-to-day situations.


IMHO Stormtroopers are inculcated into a society similar to the Marines, where maintaining high standards of loyalty, perfomance, and morale are expected. Anyone who "can't hack it" would be hassled by thier peers (verbally, task assignments, etc.), given extra training or punishment to "bring them up to speed", and/or reassigned to a regular Imperial Army unit.

Crymoon
6 April 2003, 10:48 PM
I like that idea that Vanger Chevane posted... it fits my SW universe... really well.
Thanx ... as I never been to army nor won't to go.. (Polish army ain't what other seem to be... ) I just love to read all the Marines/ Navy and all other army guys posts... Gives another perspective..

Nova Spice
10 April 2003, 02:50 PM
Thanx ... as I never been to army nor won't to go.. (Polish army ain't what other seem to be... ) I just love to read all the Marines/ Navy and all other army guys posts... Gives another perspective..

I don't know Crymoon; you Poles have been through a lot during the twentieth century. I would think your armed forces would be pretty hardened and seasoned personally. ;)

And I think it's a confirmed fact that most stormtrooper officers are not clones. I mean, the stormtroopers in the films have different voices and different reactions and fighting styles than the clonetroopers had in Attack of the Clones.

I bet something happens to the clones that makes them unstable, as Timothy Zahn established in his novels. That's my personal opinion.

mojo1701
10 April 2003, 03:27 PM
....











...
Well, maybe they started to fall apart, just like Shinzon in Nemesis, and Jango wasn't around to give them all a transfusion?

.....
....
...
..
.

Crymoon
11 April 2003, 12:12 AM
I don't know Crymoon; you Poles have been through a lot during the twentieth century. I would think your armed forces would be pretty hardened and seasoned personally.
Oh man, Nova if you only knew... :D
To be honest our army, except for a few guys.. like those that flew to Iraq... is a bunch of morons... In us army ther is something called code red or sth like that... when older soldiers try to put in line new ones... from what I heard it isn't so often in States. But it's normal in here... with a few execption ... we could make a rule = there is so much "code red" in US Army as there isn't in Polish. :D
So almost everybody that has some choice tries to avoid going to the army by bribes, and other means... We have a great tradition but the army seems to be thinking that tradition is enough... But it ain't the place for such posts.. so the end...
If you want to know more you can PM anytime..:D

Trandoshan Jedi
16 April 2003, 08:24 AM
[i]Originally posted by mojo1701
The Imperial Armed Forces remind me of a cross between ancient Roman soldiers and Nazi soldiers.
If you need more explanation on what I mean, I'll be glad to explain. [/B]

Explain please

mojo1701
16 April 2003, 01:04 PM
Ok, well, first of all, the Nazis also had militia named "Stormtroopers"

2. The Roman Army was paid upon entering the army (that's how the Roman army had lots of soldiers, when they conquered new lands, they either forced the captives into slavery, or become paid Roman soldiers, who eventually became Roman citizens)

3. The Romans divided their soldiers into groups of 10's (Centurions, etc.), and I'm pretty sure the Empire did, too. In one branch, one commander was in charge of 10 lieutenants, who were each in charge of a squad of 100 soldiers, let's say.

4. Stormtroopers (Nazi and Imperial) both followed someone who was pure evil....

If these sound a little weak, it's because I can't remember what they were. But that's basically it.

Silent
16 April 2003, 06:11 PM
The Roman Army was also similar to the Empire in that they won not necessarily through superior weapons, but in that they had extreemly well trained and disciplined troops. Also, the Roman Republic fell to a dictator who offered peace after all the in fighting and wars that came before him (Augustus), like the Galactic Republic fell to Sidious. In that vein, maybe the Jedi will be cast as the conspirators who killed Caesar/Dooku for the' good' of the Republic, but then fell after popular backlash? Ah, I'm reading too much into it...

As for the Nazis, I think that Vader's helmet was based off of German helmets/gas masks, or something on those lines. Also, the Nazis and the Empire both committed Genocide, though that is a little off topic.

Darth_Cassed
16 April 2003, 06:23 PM
No, it doesn't.

On the other hand, it does. The Stormtroopers the Nazis had were not bumbling fools. They lost because they were not heroes, not the good guys. This is the same reason Stormtroopers in Star Wars lose. They are not meant to win.

Lucas Carr
21 April 2003, 09:25 PM
Vitality Points. That's what makes the heroes win over the stormtroopers, while allowing the stormtroopes to be as good as they are supposed to be.

Ben Kenobi states that their skill surpase the skill of others.as

Sasche
22 April 2003, 08:54 PM
If Stormtroopers were so well trained and focused, then what happened to the one one Tatooine?
"These aren't the droids you're looking for."

The orders for the stormtrooper were pretty simple. An astromech and protocol droid. And finding them still together! But, Obi Wan says the the weak minded are easily swayed!

Oh well. I guess not all of the stormtroopers are such ass kickers!

Crymoon
23 April 2003, 01:03 AM
For Obi-Wan everybody, save maybe Vader and Emperor, would probably be weak minded.. :P
And being weak minded doesn't prevent you from being a good soldier... :) If you know when and how to shoot and when to follow orders then it's enough... :D

And now seriously.
Obi-wan is pretty powerful so there is no problem for him to influence minds even of a group of stormtroopers. Yes, they had their orders but affect mind is a powerful tool.
They are very well trained soldiers, brain washed to a certain extend, they follow orders and are most of the time uncorruptable.
One on one - most ST would defeat a low level PC. If they couldn't do it, there would be not Empire... they are the soldiers that spread fear and, now and then, in novels you will find that, judging by burn marks on some buildings or people, the job must have been done by ST, as only they are so efficient.

Jim Williams
23 April 2003, 04:18 AM
In d20, I've got my own version of stormtroopers that are 4th level Thugs, but I am considering using an idea some gamer had for a Thug prestige class for clonetroopers and stormtroopers.

In D6, my average stormtrooper had 5D in Blaster and typically took one action. Shoot. At 4D after the armor penalty.

In d20, a 1st level PC will probably handle one stormtrooper due to higher ability scores and vitality to take one hit. I wouldn't bet much on the PC though...the numbers would probably fall to the PC winning 5 out of 7 or 8 encounters.

In D6, pretty much the same thing. My proud players with their 5D in Dodge and Blaster (soaking up typically 4 of their starting 7 dice) found themselves with a Dodge not quite enough to evade stormies unless they took cover, but they could hit one. And hurt him. A little. Round two...

In either system though, take a "commoner" 2D in Attributes, or a 1st level Expert speeder mechanic or college student protesting the Empire's policies, and the stormtroopers will roll them up.

On another note, IMO, Obi-Wan's Affect Mind is not really relevant to the stormtroopers' ability in combat.

Vanger Chevane
23 April 2003, 03:05 PM
Originally posted by Sasche
If Stormtroopers were so well trained and focused, then what happened to the one one Tatooine?
"These aren't the droids you're looking for."

The orders for the stormtrooper were pretty simple. An astromech and protocol droid. And finding them still together! But, Obi Wan says the the weak minded are easily swayed!

Oh well. I guess not all of the stormtroopers are such ass kickers!

Tatooine is also a very backwater planet where next-to-nothing really happens, and the ones you do see in ANH are also Garrison Troops.

You're not going to get the sharpest Stormies there, it's more of a Punishment Assignment.

Darth_Cassed
23 April 2003, 03:36 PM
Besides, if stormies were strong minded, the Empire wouldn't have been able to bend and break them would they?

The Royal Guard, the Alcoloytes....Those are the strong people.

Stormtroopers are the pawns, like TIE Fighters. They operate en mass, not as a single hit squad. They aren't trained enough for that.

Dea-Ev Dacal
9 May 2003, 10:18 AM
I agree that stormtroopers are more competent than people give them credit for. When obi-wan said "Only stromtroopers are so precise people alway say that they have such bad aim, but think about it, they use E-11s, which are like an AK, thay spray fire and fill the air with blasts in hopes of getting someone in the process, while the heroes are just better with a blaster. Even Leai missed several shots in the Death Star before hitting a stormie. I think that their aim is better than the average joe, but still not the best in the galaxy.

E.D.