The Moldy Crow

TheCrow’s Nest

TIE Defender Base

Author(s): Paul Nemesh


Rebel spies have located the base where research and development is being done on the Empire's newest starfighter, the TIE Defender. This development effort is being led by Admiral Thrawn, who is reporting directly to the Emperor. Initial analysis indicates that this new weapon can outrun and outgun any starfighter in the Rebel arsenal. The Rebel Alliance needs more data on this craft and we need to shut down its testing facility.

  • Polished custom VUEs and new 3DOs showcase the focus of the mission.
  • The ships aren't the only new addition. This new enemy is a mid-mission challenge.
  • This mission is hard at the higher difficulties. Lots of stormtrooper cannon fodder will draw down your ammo reserves if you aren't careful.
  • The TIE Defender isn't the only new 3DO. It feels like a proper TIE Fighter reunion.
  • There are new surprises around every corner, and all of them feel well-integrated and not included just for the sake of newness.
  • Your eyes will be feasting and your wits will be challenged right up until the very end.


Reviewed by: Geoff Elliott | November 17, 1996

This is one of the largest and most detailed levels ever created for Dark Forces. It was also one of the first ones, and I first tried it about a year ago. I was enthralled by all the new things packed into this level. I never got a chance to play the first version, but the Collector's Edition has so many creative ideas and settings to enhance gameplay that I will never tire of playing this level.

The story itself offers up so many oppoortunities for the author to add little details to the level, and he takes full advantage of them. He also puts in several areas which can help you along the way, but are in no way necessary to completing the level. There's at least one building that the first time I skipped right by, but when coming back to play again, I noticed several additional things to explore. I don't doubt that I'll find something new every time I play this level, because not everything is obvious at first. There are lots of new WAXs and 3DOs that you can find, but you might miss some of the more subtle things; I'll let you play the level rather than cover them all here.

The design of this level is one of the best things about it. You get to see waterfalls, cliffs and you need to work your way into the base rather than get plopped right into it at the begining. It takes you back to level four of Dark Forces, and I think this author has improved substantially on the original in ways.

In his text file the author also warns that the level is hard, and he isn't kidding. The base is guarded heavily, and I found myself running out of ammo in key situations. I think that's more due to my trigger-happy nature than to any fault on the part of the author. But the puzzles are what make this level even more interesting. Even what may on the surface seem like a relatively simple concept can be twisted to provide a real challenge. I spent many a frustrating time going back and forth trying new things to work my way past a particular problem. And even if you can figure everything out, there are Dark Troopers galore to battle against. You're going to need every bit of skill and cunning you can muster to make it by this level on the Hard setting. It took me several tries to make it myself, and then only by memorizing the sequence of events, and learning to conserve ammo and shields. This is one level that will make you work for whatever you get.


This level is one of the classics, and one no Dark Forces fan should be without. If you can, grab the custom-made cutscene by Carl Kenner; the experience is definitely worth the hard drive space and download time. But even without, there is enough here to keep you challenged and interested for a long time.

Reviewed by: Jeff Walters | November 17, 1996

This is one of my favourites and regarded by a lot of people as the best add-on level. What really sets this level apart from others is the atmosphere created by the numerous intricate VUEs the author has made. They are all smooth and extremely precise in construction and makes you want to sit back and admire them.

The VUE of the TIE fighter flying patrol down the river gully, then entering the base is just beautiful. The smaller VUEs in a control room that has several rotating model ships are a terrific idea and very nicely done.

This is definitely one of the bigger levels with many different locations to visit that you don't HAVE to in order to finish the game. This means that the more times you play it you often discover new things and places which is rarely seen in most levels that often FORCE you to visit everywhere in order to finish. Some might see this as a fault, but I like it as it means that each time you play it you can take a different path to the last time you played it.

The level is pretty well constructed architectually, but there are better. And the texturing is good, not great, but you don't really notice these facts in this level as you would in another. One problem is that there are too many Dark Troopers and the Hunter Killer probe droid is easily the hardest foe in ANY level.

The tricky elevator sequence where the Sequencer Charge is located, is well thought out if a bit frustrating, especially considering you have to fight a literal army of Dark Troopers in this part. The ending is just terrific with TIEs zooming over your head as you fight off the last few Dark Troopers.


As said at the start, what really makes the level is the countless, beautifully created VUEs; it's a pity more levels released since this one haven't duplicated this visual effect. A classic level, extremely enjoyable.

Download TIE Defender Base(, 596 kB)