The Imperial AT-AT Walker was first introduced in The Empire Strikes Back and later surfaced for a few moments in Return of the Jedi. A fairly new vehicle for the dreaded Empire, these monsters weren't around during the timeline of The Phantom Menace trilogy. But they did resurface in The Force Awakens. And Rogue One introduced a different, earlier model. Now, they will once again be back to terrorize the resistance in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Only these AT-AT Walkers will be bigger, better, stronger...And look like a gorilla?

When they first showed up on the big screen, tromping across the harsh Hoth tundra, audiences were amazed and shocked at the sight of these indestructible wonders. And they were menacing in their look, perfectly escalating the terror of the Empire. They became instantly recognizable and as iconic as the Millennium Falcon. When they returned in last December's Rogue One, they needed to be downgraded, not as reliable. Hence forth, we got the AT-ACT cargo transport. Now, Star Wars 8 promises to give us the strangest Imperial Walker design yet with director Rian Johnson's take on these four-legged horrors.

The appearance of new AT-AT Walkers in The Last Jedi is said to coincide with its Empire Strikes Back tone. Making Star Wars brings this report. Always a reliable source of information, the managing editor of the site actually caught a glimpse of these new Walkers. And by all accounts, they sound pretty weird and wild.

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The new AT-AT Walkers are described as 'huge and chunky'. They will blend the aesthetic of the AT-ACT design with the classic Walkers. The First Order has learned from the Empire's many mistakes. They have reinforced these new vehicles with more armor. They are referred to as 'Super Walkers'. And they are bigger and stronger than anything the Imperial forces ever unleashed.

The legs have gotten a massive upgrade, as this was a weak spot for the original Walkers. This new design won't allow for them to topple over with a simple wire trick. Says Making Star Wars about the new look of the AT-AT Walker.

"From the front it resembles a gorilla with its front arms firmly planted on the ground [...] it has a high back that slants down towards the rear. The front legs also have a tiny cross-bar type deal that allows its front legs to kind of scoop go forward and then scoop back. In the very brief moment I saw a demonstration of the walking motion, it had a very different rhythm and pace from the classic AT-AT. If I'm not being clear, this thing is a mechanized AT-AT gorilla."

The on-staff artist at Making Star Wars did a mock-up of what was witnessed by their editor. And the image shows a very menacing face on the front of the AT-AT Walker (though this image has since been removed). It is speculated that these AT-AT Walkers will resemble a gorilla in the way the originals sort of looked like a camel. The outline is there, but the actual details are vastly different. The initial report goes onto say that these new Walkers will be shown in a long battle sequence. This makes one wonder why and how the First Order is attacking the Resistance on the ground. It is further speculated that perhaps the AT-AT Walkers are not battling the Resistance, but instead the First Order is using them to take over cities on various planets. However this all plays out, it sounds quite epic.

B. Alan Orange