This article is about the city-ship. For the episode, see The Tower.
"Is it my imagination or does that look like-"
"The central spire of Atlantis?
John Sheppard and Teyla Emmagan[src]

The Tower is an Ancient city-ship and sister city to Atlantis located on the Lord Protector's Planet. The most noticeable difference between the Tower and Atlantis is that the control chair is in where the Stargate would normally be rather than in a separate tower and all but the Control Tower have long ago fallen.



The Tower from a distance.

During the Ancients time in the Pegasus Galaxy, they built several city-ships of which the Tower was one. Eventually the Tower was abandoned by the Ancients due to the war with the Wraith.

Following the Ancients departure, the Tower was taken over by the Lord Protector's people, the nobles of whom possessed the ATA gene needed to control the Tower's systems. However, they lacked understanding of the Tower's full capabilities and most of the city-ship's systems ran only on automatic and the Control Room was turned into a gallery. The people eventually manage to figure out how to use the Tower's Control Chair to work its sensors and drone weapons and successfully defended the planet from the Wraith. The Wraith eventually lost interest in the planet, possibly due to the threat posed by the Tower's drone weapons to their ships. Over time, the city became overgrown and all but the Control Tower fell, possibly due to Wraith attacks. The buried part of the city became known as "the catacombs" and were unstable and prone to tremors and passageway collapses. Though the threat of the Wraith was ended, the Tower's inhabitants, led by the Lord Protectors, would use the Tower to maintain their power over the people of the planet, using the drones to quell any possible rebellions. The Lord Protectors bloodline was also heavily maintained and regulated to ensure the next Lord Protector could use the Control Chair, but it eventually started to weaken as did the strength of each Lord Protectors ATA gene.

In 2006, the First Atlantis Reconnaissance Team visited the planet and discovered the Tower, recognizing it as a sister city to Atlantis, though one much less structurally intact. After Lt. Colonel John Sheppard was discovered to have the strongest ATA gene seen in over 300 years, he was taken to the Tower where the current Lord Protector was dying and wished Sheppard to marry his daughter Mara to revitalize the royal bloodline and become the next Lord Protector. With the help of Doctor Carson Beckett, it was discovered that the Lord Protector had been poisoned as part of a coup planned by his son Tavius and the Tower's Chamberlin Otho. After the Lord Protector's death, Otho took the ATA gene therapy offered as an alternative to the current system of rule, became Lord Protector and launched a drone attack to wipe out the nearby village. In order to stop him, Doctor Rodney McKay, having reached the Tower's Auxiliary Control Room. determined that the Tower's single ZPM power source was nearly depleted and if they could create a big enough power drain, it could be depleted fully thus leaving the drones inert. At Sheppard's insistence, McKay charged the Tower's Stardrive, the single greatest power drain he could create. As the drone attack commenced, the charging of the Stardrive drained the ZPM of all of its remaining power, leaving the Tower completely powerless and the drones inert.

Following the overthrow of Otho and the nobles, the people of the planet made a deal with the Atlantis expedition where they supplied the expedition with the Tower's supply of drones and powerless Puddle Jumpers in exchange for getting a supply of medicines and a GDO in return. It is unknown what happened to the Tower afterwards, if it was abandoned or continued to be inhabited just without anyone being able to use any of its systems anymore. (SGA: "The Tower")



  • The Tower is an Ancient city-ship the size of Atlantis. However, the above-ground portion of the central spire is surrounded by hills that are unlikely to be sediments accumulated over the past 10,000 years; rather, they appear as normal, rock-cored hills. From the spire's elevation, the bulk of the city must be beneath these hills; however, 10,000 years is not enough for hills to "shift" over the city -- orogenic processes take millions to billions of years. One possibility is that the hills are volcanic in nature; a relatively recent eruption might have covered the bulk of the city in pyroclastic flow, which would then have cooled to form the hilly terrain.
  • The main difference between the Tower and Atlantis, is the location of the control chair, which stands at the central podium, while the Stargate is outside the village. It's possible that the gate once stood in another part of the city-ship, but wraith attacks have destroyed the buildings, until only the Stargate stands.
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