Before we move onto the designs of ships new to the Star Wars cinematic universe in Star Wars: Episode VII, lets talk a little about the unique X-wing Fighter designs created for the new film. As we know now, the new X-wing in Star Wars: Episode VII is smaller, featuring Ralph McQuarrie styled engines with a shorter nose and sleeker back. There has been a lot of questions about how the wings unfold and we can solve that here today too. Before the new design was locked down and unique paint schemes were applied like silver and blue and black and orange, designers worked on figuring out what was going to be unique about the new fighter.
The first design we saw was from Star Wars legend Ryan Church. In almost all respects, its the classic X-wing we all know and love. However, behind the cockpit, between where Luke Skwalker sat and Artoo-Detoo was socketed in, a glass hatch has been added to hold a second person. Its essentially a two-person X-wing. The design works well and I can see it being used in comics, video games, and any story situation that requires two people in the same fighter for some reason. However, it doesn’t really make very much sense as when I just look at the piece I don’t see what the added person is needed for in a standard combat situation. If you have Artoo, the second human seems redundant. I speculate that perhaps this was used at one point to have “Kira” and John Boyega’s character leave the rocky sand planet together.
The engines are identical to what we have seen from the new X-wing. They’re based off the Ralph McQuarrie design. The X-wing does have wings that split into the classic “X” and the engines simply break into quarters. It appears to be a solid circle when not in the “X” position. But they simply break into half-circles. The artwork Church designed for this piece shows the ship with the “S-foils” in attack position and not.
The rear boosters on this design are shorter than on Luke Skywalker’s Episode IV X-wing Fighter. The nose is slightly shorter too and it could be an accident but it really is about the same length as the classic Kenner toy of Luke’s X-wing. The paint on this fighter is really similar to the paint on Luke’s X-wing as well. Artoo-Detoo is used for the droid in all ship depictions.
The second X-wing design is by an artist named CPine. Imagine a classic X-wing body. But in the rear, put two big long boosters on the top and two smaller boosters on the bottom. The reason? This X-wing looks like an eagle attacking. It’s top wings fold up almost like a V or how Dracula holds his cape when he’s being creepy. The lower wings fold down to still make it an “X.” The top wings have a cut-out in them for the smaller wings. So basically the bottom wings actually go into the top wings when its not in attack position. They collapse into one another. When it is in attack position, the top wings have a hole in them where the bottom wings once were. It makes the feature looks really cool.
So basically the wings split apart to make an X. The top wings literally have a hole cut out where the bottom wings can fold into.
Both designs are really awesome looking. They’ve clearly gone with a more conventional design in the film and that’s for the best. But either of these designs would have looked great on screen and you never know, they still might show up in this film as a unique fighter or someplace else.
Our next update will feature a new ship not seen on screen before!