The StarViper-class attack platform was a heavy starfighter that was used extensively in the criminal underworld during the era of the Galactic Empire.
The crimelord Prince Xizor had access to numerous starships, his favorite was a heavy assault starfighter called
Virago. When Xizor contracted MandalMotors, he demanded a vehicle that could rival the TIE Interceptor in speed and agility.
The company succeeded by producing the StarViper-class attack platform, a vehicle which had more in common with a mobile weapons platform than a starfighter. A pleased Xizor christened the vehicle
Virago and purchased all rights to the design to ensure that his transport would remain unique.
Virago had four adjustable wings and thrust nacelles that moved constantly during flight, which created the illusion that
Virago was a strange, living creature. Each of the vehicle's wings were capped with two
microthrusters. To achieve high speeds and for atmospheric travels, the craft's wings folded closed behind the cockpit.
In combat, the Virago's four wings expanded for better maneuverability. They moved and used the same type of S-foil technology used on the X-wing starfighter. These wings were heavily armored and each contained a power generator along with reserve fuel tanks for long travels.
Virago's weapon systems were built around an advanced targeting computer along with an experimental laser sighting system rather than being built around the weapons themselves. With this unorthodox design strategy, the craft would not require excessive or illegal weapons that would attract attention.
Once the targeting computer was in place, any weapon installed would perform better than manufacturer specifications.
Virago was armed with two forward-mounted Taim & Bak Ht-12 double laser cannons and two forward Borstel proton torpedo launchers.
StarVipers formed the main starfighter force of the Zann Consortium, and they were modified to carry and deploy swarms of old Pistoeka sabotage droids that the Consortium obtained via the black market, proving superior to interceptors such as the RZ-1 A-wing interceptor and TIE/In starfighter. Additionally, these fighters were also employed in small numbers by the Mandalorian forces present on Mandalore during the Galactic Civil War.
Virago was apparently destroyed in a battle over Coruscant, when Darth Vader's flagship
Executor destroyed Xizor's skyhook. Soon after Xizor's death, MandalMotors regained the rights to the StarViper design and began producing inferior versions of the original craft.