I just watched the new movie StarWars Rogue One. There is something I just realized:

  • Body armors stormtroopers wear do not offer any kind of protection at all.

Any shot from a laser weapon will kill a stromtrooper. If body armor does not protect you, why wear it?

  • cross answered on scifi.stackexchange
    – Yasskier
    Dec 18, 2016 at 21:45
  • Somebody had earlier on asked this very same question in the Sci-fi & Fantasy community of StackExchange. Have a look at this for diverse answers on this: scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/38509/…
    – Shab86
    Dec 19, 2016 at 0:54
  • Maybe it's not armour at all, but an environment suit.
    – Tim
    Dec 19, 2016 at 1:04
  • 2
    @tim its both...
    – cde
    Dec 19, 2016 at 3:10

2 Answers 2


They definitely offer protection in canon sources, including dissipating energy weapon bolts (and protecting from glancing bolts - which is why you see rebels being able to shoot and kill stormtroopers) and protecton from shrapnel, as well as other protections.

I'm a bit reluctant to just copy/paste from existing well-compiled sources for detailed proof, so here's links:

Also, remember that most of the time, stormtroopers aren't there to shoot things out with heavily armed infantry (that's what bombardment from navy is for) - they are MOSTLY supposed to be engaged in riot control, occupation, and such. What we see in Rogue One and other Star Wars movies (except for start of ANH) isn't their regular job - most of the time, their job is exactly what you see at Mos Eisley, checkpoints, arrests, garrison duty etc....


The body armor of a storm trooper does offer protection, in universe. The movie's need for the good guys to win makes production ignore all the supposed benefits of the armor. It is a discontinuity between in-universe fact and out of universe production

Of course, the main purpose of the uniform and body armor is fear tactics. Making the troopers seem monotonous, bigger and intimidating.

  • Do you have examples of the armor working in other media but not in the film?
    – MattD
    Dec 18, 2016 at 22:41

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