Star Wars: How The First Order Has Upgraded From The Death Star In The Force Awakens

With the 1977 release of Star Wars: A New Hope, the Death Star immediately took its place in the pop culture lexicon. The gargantuan lair where Darth Vader and the Empire did their misdeeds was so imposing that it instantly became shorthand for any evildoer’s abode. But how does Star Wars: The Force Awakens plan to top the Death Star? Well, with the Starkiller Base, which J.J. Abrams has now confirmed is where the First Order lays its head.

But just how does Starkiller Base eclipse the Death Star? Well, director and co-writer J.J. Abrams was luckily on hand to explain just that to Entertainment Weekly, teasing that while it’s basically another Death Star, it's capabilities extend much further, and are much, much deadlier. Abrams explained:

It is very much – and it’s acknowledged as such in the movie – apparently another Death Star. But what it’s capable of, how it works, and what the threat is, is far greater than what the Death Star could have done. Starkiller Base is another step forward, technologically speaking, in terms of power.

The Starkiller Base will be the command center for the remaining units of the Imperial remnant known as the First Order, and those of you who are eager to take a peek at it probably don’t realise that you already have. That’s because it’s that rather ominous looking weapon of mass destruction just above John Boyega’s head and to the right of Chewbacca in the recent poster for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. 

What all of this means exactly, we don’t really know yet. Except that it’s probably safe to assume that the Starkiller Base will have the ability to murder quite a few people at once, as well as destroy anything the First Order wants it to. And that means that the villains who will be in control of it, which will include Adam Driver’s Kylo Ren and Domhnall Gleeson’s General Hux, will almost certainly have an advantage over their rivals. 

Also, the fact that it’s named Starkiller means there’s every chance that the station will be able to destroy entire suns, stars, and solar systems. All of which suggests that a measly lightsaber or an X-Wing probably won’t stand much of a chance against it. The Millennium Falcon though? Well that’s an entirely different kettle of fish altogether. 

We’re closing in on the release date for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which is now just over a month away from finally hitting cinemas on December 18. And then everything will finally be right with the world. 

Gregory Wakeman