- "Well, the bounty hunter we ran into on Ord Mantell changed my mind."
- — Han Solo
Ord Mantell was known as the Heart of the Bright Jewel since it orbited the blue star Bright Jewel at the center of the Bright Jewel Cluster. The planet was famous for its thick, outer cometary cloud, which has been the site of the Blockade Runners Derby for nearly 100 years. Ord Mantell had a 26-hour day, and a population of 4 billion.
Dark, placid seas reflect the warm glows of its twin moons and 13 lesser satellites. From orbit, the pink-tinged clouds cover 70 percent of the planet's surface, shielding the pinpricks of city lights and the yellow soil of open land. These natural wonders made Ord Mantell something of a tourist attraction, despite its seedier side. It was also the homeworld of the Mantellian Savrips, whose sapience was largely unnoticed or ignored.
Despite Ord Mantell's attempts to be contemporary and on par with the Core Worlds, its pollution from use of fossil fuels has kept it quite barren. The planet maintains huge robotic coal yards used to fuel the planet's cities. An immense scrapyard dominates some of Ord Mantell's landscape.
Colonization (12,000 BBY–22 BBY) Edit
Ord Mantell was settled in circa. 12,000 BBY by Corellian colonists as an advanced military outpost for the Galactic Republic. It was one of several Ordnance/Regional Depots, lending to its name. The settlers became mostly farmers, although the planet became a haven for criminals.
Over time, more wealthy planets and better hyperspace routes diminished Ord Mantell's strategic importance, but became something of a free port for all manner of freighters and cargo ships. Despite the planet's dropping stature, it remained a popular stop for traveling ships.
Before the start of the Clone Wars, Jedi Knight Pablo-Jill brought peace to the lawless world. Afterwards, Ord Mantell was one of the planets used as a weapons storage facility and clone trooper barracks by the Grand Army of the Republic during the Clone Wars.
During the Imperial era, the planet claimed to be free of Imperial interest. During the later years of the Galactic Civil War, however, the Empire infringed upon the safe-haven feel of Ord Mantell by moving one of their Naval staging areas close to the system. The space around Ord Mantell would often fill with Imperial warships moving through training maneuvers, and the port-towns would often host Imperials on shore leave. Usually, the Imperials avoided rooting out trouble on Ord Mantell, since it really wasn't worth their while.
It was at a starship scrapyard on Ord Mantell that Dash Rendar—working to locate information on Han Solo's whereabouts for Lando Calrissian after the debacle at Cloud City—ran into IG-88 and other bounty hunters trying to intercept Boba Fett, who was transporting Han Solo's frozen body to Jabba the Hutt. Rendar defeated IG-88 in a battle in the Ord Mantell junkyards.
Shortly after the Declaration of a New Republic, Ord Mantell was invited into membership by the New Republic, and given a seat in the New Republic Senate. The city of Worlport served as its capital for many years. Ord Mantell was utilized by the New Republic Military as a weapons depot and supply point throughout the continuing war against the Empire. Without having direct proximity to any nearby trade routes, however, it was of small strategic significance, and was never considered an important target to the Galactic Empire.
This would be an important factor after the fall of Coruscant in 15 ABY. The New Republic, uprooted from its capital system and struggling to manage government and military operations while trying to handle millions of refugees from Coruscant, would consider Ord Mantell as a potential relocation site for the refugees, and potentially even a new seat of government. However, the age-old limitations of its location was a downside to its potential, not to mention its proximity to and being virtually surrounded by Imperial territory. The leaders of the New Republic found themselves stalled to make a decision until some benefit presented itself.
This came when a group of Jedi discovered an uncharted and undocumented hyperroute that skimmed alarmingly close to the Nyarikan Nebula. Their navigational coordinates were stored inside R2-D2's memory banks, and delivered to the New Republic Military's command staff. Upon realizing that this might provide a secret and secure way to coordinate military and intel operations, leaders like Crix Madine and Leia Organa Solo began to actually consider Ord Mantell as not only a new home for the New Republic Government, but more importantly, a place for the refugees to make into their new home.
During a closed-door meeting of key New Republic Senate delegations, an agreement was made that Ord Mantell would become the new home of the New Republic, and the planetary delegates from Worlport offered Ord Mantell's space to take in refugees from the loss of Coruscant. The resort city of Beyerplest was officially renamed New Alderaan, and declared the primary region for refugee relocations. This agreement, however, was only approved with an agreement of protection from the New Republic Military.
Ord Mantell's primary form of planetary defense is enshrined by two SLD-26 Planetary Shield Generators, stationed inside the military bases at New Alderaan and Worlport. In addition, four KDY v-150 Planet Defender ion cannons are in place, two of which are located in New Alderaan to provide a strong defense against orbital attacks and bombardments. Various turbolaser towers and ion cannons are installed throughout the planet, primarily focused around protecting New Alderaan. In addition, two major Infantry divisions are assigned to Ord Mantell to oversee their ground defenses. These divisions are posted at Worlport and New Alderaan, headquartered at the New Alderaan Military Base.