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Well we did this with saber fights so I figured why not with space battles. Now for this Im going with large scale engagements between militaries not like escapes or fights between a small number of ships. So here it goes.

1-Battle of Yavin (Star Wars) Pretty obviously the gold standard of space battles. Just so tense throughout. Plus its really the only space battle that is the climax of its movie on it's own. But really how do you beat Luke, Wedge and Biggs going into the trench, Luke turning off his computer, Vader having him in his sites, Han coming to the rescue and Luke saving the day? Just iconic and really cool because its before Star Wars became so much about the Jedi and lightsaber and still kinda was about fighting in the stars.

2-Battle of Scariff (Rogue One) This one is just bonkers, the scale and spectacle of it beyond insane. Alot of great moments from the rebel ship purposefully colliding with a Star Destroyer to push into another Star Destroyer to destroy the shield? Just awesome. Plus the use of Red and Gold leader is seriously the gold standard of fan service.

3-Attack on the Dreadnaught (The Last Jedi) I love how Paige is used in this battle, a character with no lines and I still really care about her. Johnson has a talent for creating battles where you can actually see whats happening and the objective of the battle is clear. The musical cue when Paige manages to drop the bombs is perfect too. Plus the whole idea that this is a purely pyrrhic victory I just love.

4-Battle of Endor (Return of the Jedi) The size and scale of this battle really put everything already seen in Star Wars to shame. Some great moments and visuals but I feel for the most part its just Rebellion flying around waiting for Han to get the shield down and once he does its entirely too easy for Lando to go blow up the Death Star. Still awesome though.

5-The Battle of Coruscant (Revenge of the Sith) This is really the first stage of what in my opinion is the flat out awesome first half hour or so of ROTS. We get  glimpse of something fans had wanted to see more of which is Anakin and Obi Wan on a mission together. Obi Wan's total devotion to the mission while Anakin refuses to go ahead without him works real well. Plus this is maybe the only time we really see two evenly matched militaries facing off which really adds to the scale.

6-The Battle of Starkiller Base (The Force Awakens) Like some other space battles in the saga this one takes a bit of a backseat to other goings on. I feel like this has some of the same issues as the Battle of Endor. Once the Resistance notices there is a hole in the oscilator Poe is able to go blow the planet up with basically no one even trying to stop him.

7-The Battle of Exogol (The Rise of Skywalker) The scale of this is through the roof. I just feel like the objective of this one isn't clear. Its like "we need to  blow up the tower, wait no one of the Star Destroyers". Lando showing up with the fleet is a very cool moment to be fair though, although I wish the search for allies had played a larger role in the movie.

8-The Battle of Naboo (The Phantom Menace) As I said earlier, this is taking an obvious backseat to the Qui Gon/Obi Wan/Maul fight. Its just a strange battle and the good guys objective is not clear. I know they want to destroy the droid control ship but we are shown no way for them to do it. I don't think a dozen small fighters hitting the outside of it is gonna do the trick. So the whole battle until Anakin stumbles into the hanger just seems odd.

 

Well I think thats all the large scale space battles in the saga so I'll leave it like this.

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Are you talking the OG Battle of Yavin or the SE version?

The original was so groundbreaking at the time, the 90s era CG of the current version isn't holding up super great.

I'd put Rogue One at the top for all the reasons you listed. Red and Gold Leader showing up had me marking out almost as much as the Vader hall fight.

I disliked the PT battles because I disliked the PT ship designs. ROTS had the best of them for sure. Along with the duel, it did feel like fan service in a good way. But like the duel, it was ruined by stupid little things like the little gremlin droids.

The ST battles were all pretty forgettable. Technically great, but lacking in any real excitement. Maybe in TFA when Poe shows up at Maz's castle and the X-Wings come in over the water was cool-- as was a modern effects Falcon chase. But those were small scale.

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I’d probably give it to Return of the Jedi just for the Williams score in the background during it all. 
 

I guess it is mostly just the Rebels waiting around for Han to do his thing, but taking down the Super Star Destroyer, flight through the Death Star and most of all... ‘It’s a trap!’ make it my far and above No. 1. The trench run was the OG but the RoTJ battle feels like the basis for every one of them that came after. 

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Yeah, I did not pay it it's due respect. I think it probably defined all space battles.

I will say, i hate how Star Trek drifted to copying Star Wars. I always loved how their battles were very different. Enterprise vs Reliant is a gold standard in a totally different way.

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I just feel like the turning of the tide in ROTJ just doesn't feel right. Its kinda like "OMG we have no chance there is a fleet of Star Destroyers blocking our escape and a super weapon picking us off like its nothing" and then all of a sudden they are taking out Super Star Destroyers. It just feels more like "well its time for good guys to win" rather than any logical turning point in the battle.

Having said that I still love it. I just cant put it in the very top of space battles from Star Wars. 

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2 hours ago, Tank said:

Are you talking the OG Battle of Yavin or the SE version?

The original was so groundbreaking at the time, the 90s era CG of the current version isn't holding up super great.

Really?  Huh.  I think it still looks very good.  Now I need to go rewatch. 

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I agree plus I think that battle is more about the tension, the shots of the pilots in their cockpits, the shots of the rebels at their base than the actual battle footage itself. 

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My favourite parts of the space battles in outer space, listed as they come to mind :

 

  • the metallic sprooooooing noise Ben Burtt made for the seismic charges Temuera Morrison uses in the asteroid chase in AotC (I think it's also used when he shows up in THE MΛNDΛLORIΛN)
  • when they blow up the Death Stars
  • the pairing of music & motion in that one sequence where the Falcon is diving away from the Imperial ships in ESB
  • all the ships in the fleet jumping to hyperspace in RotJ
  • I kind of like the shot of the Starkiller's rays reaching out like outstretched fingers on their way to smash into the planets in TFA
  • the Coppola rip-off from RotS has some space stuff, right?

 

Uh oh. I thought I liked these movies way more! I thought an unending series of instances of moments from its many many outer space battles would just come spooling out of me without much prompting.

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OH WAIT when you kill the Emperor in TIE Fighter. That's my favourite part of any space battle in Star Wars. Shooting down Emperor Sheev Eisley Palpatine's shuttle in the TIE Fighter video game. Final answer.

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