Since the introduction of Stormtroopers in 1977 in Star Wars, they have been slightly altered over the years. They began simply as Stormtroopers, then were known as Clone Troopers in the prequels, and The Force Awakens introduced the First Order Stormtrooper, which most closely resembled the original Stormtrooper. The first trailer for the upcoming Star Wars spinoff, Rogue One, featured the return of the traditional Stormtrooper seen in the original Star Wars trilogy. While the trailer showed the return of the stormtrooper, it also added one new variant of the stormtrooper, known as the Death Trooper which can be identified as those in the all black armor. In addition to this, a recent promotional piece of art for Star Wars Celebration – Europe revealed another variant of the Stormtrooper, known as the Shore Trooper.
The Shore Trooper can also briefly be seen in the trailer for Rogue One for just a split second on the beach scene, along with the AT-AT’s. The Shore Trooper will most likely live up to its name, and simply be a Stormtrooper who is employed on beaches near oceans or large bodies of water. Other than the Battle of Kashyyk in Revenge of the Sith, no Star Wars battles have occurred on beaches or near oceans, which can give a new take on the traditional Stormtrooper-Rebel fight. In addition to the reveal of the new type of Stormtrooper, the AT-AT’s seen in the trailer are also revealed on the promotional art, but they also differ slightly in comparison to those of the original trilogy.
This new form of the famous Imperial vehicle from the original trilogy is known by a new name in Rogue One: AT-ACT, which stands for All Terrain, Armored Cargo Transport. This new AT-AT can presumably be used to transport Stormtroopers into battle, while also posing a major threat to the Rebels with its massive size and weapons as well.
While these new Stormtroopers and AT-AT’s will be introduced in Rogue One, which chronologically takes place between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, fans may be curious as to why the Death Troopers or Shore Troopers were not utilized by the Empire in the events of the original trilogy. This may be explained in the upcoming film, but it is also possible the filmmakers simply wanted to implement a new take on several aspects of what made the original trilogy so popular, and it will go without an explanation.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story will premiere in theaters December 16th, 2016.