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The Myth of the PT Jedi Guardians

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > STAR WARS Discussion
The Myth of the PT Jedi Guardians

Aurbere's Avatar


Aurbere
02.24.2013 , 12:27 PM | #41
Just want to add and correct a few points to this post.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
Concerning lightsaber forms, Soresu and Shien, despite being tailored to reflecting blaster fire, are in fact effective against lightsaber wielding opponents. Soresu in particular is very effective against multiple opponents and specializes in wearing ones opponent down, waiting for them to make a mistake, and then striking out. It was highly effective.

And while Shien is specifically for combating blaster wielding opponents, many Jedi also learned and mastered Djem So such as Khaat Qiyn, Aayla Secura, Zelice Sturm, Sora Bulq, Anakin Skywalker, Jedi Masters Plo Koon, Even Piell, Luminara Unduli, and Cin Drallig, and the Padawans Ahsoka Tano and Jax Pavan. Unduli being a good example, she mastered Soresu and supplemented that with Form V. In fact the only form I'd say that went out of use was Makashi, simply because is focused purely on lightsaber combat which in that period were rare. But nonetheless the forms of Form III and Form V are still formidable in the right hands.


It should also be noted that Shien and Djem So had effectively become a single form, combining the blaster defense of Shien with the offense of Djem So.

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And concerning Juyo, it is true that their were likely a greater number of practitioners of Juyo in the time of the OR than the time of the the PT Jedi Order. However Juyo, from the moment of its creation, was regarded as unfavourable in the Jedi Order because it encouraged aggression etc. and was in fact more favored by the Sith. A Juyo practitioner would have the edge against a Soresu master, but only if they themselves were highly skilled, and given the almost 'taboo' nature of Juyo I doubt their were many in either eras. On the other hand their were many Soresu masters and skilled practitioners in the PT era.
Juyo is considered the Sith Form by Sidious, with good reason. It relies on dark emotions for power, which made Mace Windu extremely proficient at it.

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In this sense I would agree that OR Jedi would have more practitioners of the lightsaber dueling forms, but the forms of Soresu and Shien/Djem So can easily be adapted. And forms such as Ataru, Shii-Cho and Niman/Jar'Kai were equally effective. And given the highly level of blaster wielding opponents in that time, and may I stress the great deal of peace time in which the Jedi would have the time to practice and perfect.
Ataru isn't the best form for defense against blaster fire, but true masters of the form like Qui-Gon and Yoda had effectively eliminated that weakness.

The other forms were already effective in dueling, and to say that they switched to blaster defense is foolish. Whether people believe it or not, Yoda had been preparing them for the next war with the Sith. They didn't expect them to come back in the way they did, but Yoda knew they would return eventually.


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And finally, just for the record, Jedi don't learn how to use lightsabers 'from a textbook' - holocrons can often provide a means of training but they also learn first hand from their masters. And through wielding a lightsaber themselves and sparring with their master, they can learn the 'subtle nuances' - however I do agree their are significant benefits to having combat experience.
Masters like Cin Drallig who had been trained by Yoda and had a textbook knowledge of the lightsaber forms.

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However the fact is, and this is the crux of my argument, that those benefits are offset by the negatives of war and constant conflict. You argue that conflict unbalancing Jedi doesn't make sense, because it would make the Order defunct. But the fact is, they are. Jedi are keepers of peace, not soldiers - just like Windu says. And that applies to all Jedi of all eras. When Jedi become warriors and warmongers like they do in the OR period, many become unbalanced and lose affinity with the Force and so either embrace the darkside or become weakened. For example Nahdar Vebb who said:

"But in this war, strength prevails. The rules have changed."

Only later to be cut down by Grievous do to his own arrogance and aggresion, which not only made him foolhardy but dulled his senses - hence the success of a cheap trick on Grievous' part. And as Yoda later lamented:

"In this war, a danger there is of losing who we are."

And you may recall what Satele Shan said to the soon-to-be Hero of Tython after the latter took a life:

"Taking a life affects the Living Force, and the one who does the killing."

Imagine that but on a massive scale, also remember that this would have been an even greater problem in a war against biological and often angry/emotional enemies. The Jedi were obviously cautious and fearful of war because of the host of problems it brings and the affect it has on ones affinity with the light. The fact of the matter is, the Jedi Code and everything the Jedi stand for is fundamentally opposed to the concept of war, war and Jedi do not mix well and almost always lead to negative consequences. Its a fatal flaw of the Jedi and one I recognize, but that's just how it is.

But of course the Jedi have recognize this flaw and there are ways to counter it, Jedi insist on entering battle with a clear head and maintaining inner serenity etc. But not all Jedi are immune and can achieve such focus, many will become unbalanced. Arguably the likes of Jun Seros succumbed to this, much like Nahdar becoming arrogant and emotional, which led to their demise. War simply doesn't work for Jedi, and that does make them rather defunct. Take the Mandalorian Wars, all who participated fell to the darkside. Do you really think that all the Revanchists simply embraced the darkside because their master did so? No, it was because the war and worn them down and weakened them, they lost touch with the light. Again like Kreia said;

"The Mandalorian Wars were a series of massacres that masked another war, a war of conversion. Culminating in a final atrocity that no Jedi could walk away from..."

The Great Galactic War also shows examples of this, despite their abilities in precognition and foresight, they failed to see their betrayal at the hands of the Sith. Like Malgus said:

"As our powers of the dark side have blinded you."

The prolonged conflict unbalanced the Jedi from the light and they became blinded by darkness and were therefore easily betrayed by the Sith. Did you not think it strange that no Jedi had a vision or any form of foresight predicting the destruction of the Jedi Temple? The same applies for Order 66, a combination of prolonged war and Sidious' dark side presence clouded the Jedi. But this is at a macro level, however I believe it applies at a micro level as well - the ability of a Jedi to wield a lightsaber is dependent on awareness, precognition and sense. I'd even go as far to say that was the reason so many Jedi where so easily cut down by the clones, the didn't sense anything, they didn't foresee the attack, and so were more easily cut down - even when they turned to face their enemies. Only the most powerful masters did, who had managed to keep focused in war e.g. Master Yoda.

Concerning the Clone Wars, we have to remember that it was unlike any other war. It was a war not against Mandalorians, or soldiers, or Sith, but against droids. Droids not exhume emotions, they don't spur anger and rage and grief in a Jedi as a biological combatant would do. Its difficult to hate a droid for example. Wars before that were the equivalent to a maelstrom of emotions, emotions Jedi had to block out and often failed to do. So of course the Jedi grew stronger during this war, because it was like a massive training exercise with the droids being like advanced versions of training remotes. A perfect war if you will, in terms of honing skill with the lightsaber. The OR Jedi did not have this advantage. Lets also remember that were not comparing Jedi who have been in war, and Jedi who have not. But the PT Jedi Order and the OR Jedi Order, the the PT Jedi Order have experience combat, even better, combat against droids, which removes all the negatives of combat with a biological. This would have been especially beneficial for Soresu practioners, who would have had constant training. Making the skills of Soresu practitioners in the PT era formidable, formidable enough to defeat a Jedi with experience fighting Sith.

And as a side note, Obi-Wan Kenobi did not rapidly improve during the course of the Clone Wars as you claim, few Jedi Masters did - Obi Wan become a Soresu master over the 10 year period of peace between the Naboo conflict and the Clone Wars. Hence why Dooku defeated Obi-Wan in both engagements. Padawans however, such as Anakin and Ashoka, did however - because they were still undergoing training at the hands of their masters (training they would have received in peace time too), and fighting droids augmented that training and did not detract from it, because it was not the same as fighting biologicals.
Agreed.

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And to address some of your final points:

As I said, times of war will not give Padawans access to veteran duelists, because those duelists are out of the front lines or dead. War, as I have already said, depletes the number of skilled duelists in any given Jedi Order, leaving less to train future generations who become comparatively weak. Case in point: Mical.
To suggest that there are veteran duelists around during war is foolish. The only reason Cin Drallig was at the Temple during the Clone Wars is because he is a teacher at heart. So Padawans had him to teach them the lightsaber forms.

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Concerning the long list of skilled duelists that I gave. What is more important to note is that they all mastered a form if not several. Many Jedi in the PT Order mastered a form. Which naturally makes them superior to an OR Jedi who has mastered few, if any, regardless of combat experience - note that I am not implying that this is the case, all though it would be for some in any given Order. Through forms we can compare Jedi across eras, because forms are a standard that remain the same, unless they are improved upon. However between these periods this did not happen (excluding Vaapad but that is a point in the PT Orders favour) A master of Soresu is a master of Soresu, regardless of period. And in that period there were many masters - that is my point. What's more many of them were praised as being "considered one of the greatest duelists in the Order's history", "most esteemed swordsmen in Jedi history" and "greatest swordsmen ever produced by the Jedi Order". So if the PT Order had some of the greatest duelists in Jedi history, then those other Jedi that Order regards as exceptional, must have been exception across all eras.
Not only that, but increase in peace times allows a Jedi to train in their chosen form constantly, mastering it to the highest extent. Or they can branch out and master other forms like Yoda and Mace Windu.

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Finally, another 'measuring stick' by which we can test ability is the Sith i.e. Darth Sidious, Count Dooku & Asajj Ventress. I'd also take the time to prove that Ventress is arguably stronger than the majority of 'foot soldier' Sith in the Sith empires of the OR era. Firstly, Darth Sidious is canonically the most powerful Sith Lord in galactic history, and I think his accomplishments prove that that is the case. He took Dooku on as an apprentice, which must mean he held his abilities in very high esteem, I think he says as much in the 'Darth Plagueis' novel, or it is at least insinuated. So any Jedi that can go toe-to-toe or defeat Dooku must be an exceptional duelist, across all eras e.g. Obi-Wan & Anakin among others. The same applies for Ventress - as we have now established that Dooku is an exceptional duelist not just in comparison with Jedi of his time, but Jedi across all times - Ventress was considered very powerful in the eyes of Dooku, else he would not have taken her on as his apprentice - he also says so himself. Sidious also regarded her as very powerful too:

There is a disturbance in the Force—your assassin. She has become very powerful...Eliminate her.

That's coming from the most powerful Sith Lord to ever exist, he saw her as a threat. So it is on this grounding that I make such claims about Ventress, and I believe it makes the feats of Plo Koon among others all the more impressive and testament to their abilities with the lightsaber. Plo Koon in particular, who was regarded as very powerful in the eyes of Darth Maul whom is very powerful himself due to the above argument as the fact he was honed as a weapon. The fact that Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan went toe-to-toe with him is quite the achievement.

I definitely see the advantages of gaining combat experience. But I simply believe that the negatives out weigh the positives and that peace time is where Jedi truly flourish in every respect.
^Agreed on your final point, however I will say that Dooku was recruited not only for his skills in the Jedi arts, but his political skills as well. And Ventress' ability to go toe-to-toe with people marveled as the best of the best speaks volumes.

Now for my own points-

To say that the Jedi lack any combat experience is simply foolish. As Mace Windu said, the Jedi are keepers of the peace. This requires the Jedi to travel to various locations across the galaxy to 'keep the peace.' A mission for the Jedi rarely ends without incident. We see this during the mission to Malastare.

The Jedi also dealt with the Trade Federation's battle droids on several occassions. Qui-Gon Jinn had to fight a fallen Jedi. The Jedi fought in the Yinchorri Uprising and the Stark Hyperspace War. So they had considerable combat experience, but you will say that they have no dueling experience. A previous post of mine proves you wrong. The Jedi dueled one another often. Sure it isn't life or death, but it is a learning experience and preparation for the real deal.

Concerning Mace Windu. He defeated Ventress with ease, she fled. He defeated Dooku after a short duel, he fled. Just because a limb wasn't removed or an enemy wasn't cut down doesn't mean you lost.

But now we come to the now infamous Mace vs. Sidious topic. Mace Windu won. Sidious was only holding back his Force power, but his dueling skills were brought to bear. Mace Windu had given in fully to Vaapad, fighting like he had never fought before, but even then the battle was a stalemate. It wasn't until Anakin arrived that Mace Windu won.

Not to mention George saying Mace won. Sooo... yeah.

So in closing. The PT Jedi had taken the time to fully master their chosen forms, some choosing to master multiple or all seven forms. Not only that, but we have canonical evidence to support these Jedi being the best of the best. Like Beni said, war is not good for Jedi. The Jedi flourish in peace times, both in numbers and strength. This is why powerful members of the Order come from eras following long periods of peace.

Such as Odan-Urr, Vodo Baas, and Arca Jeth. We can't question the power that these Jedi had, however, the difference between those above and the PT Jedi is time. Odan-Urr and Arca Jeth were two of the most powerful members of the Order at their time, but in comparison to their PT equivalents, they pale in power. This is because the Jedi Order has evolved over time, techniques advance and new members are able to take advantage of millenia of teachings.

To deny this would also deny the effectiveness of the Rule of Two. The Banite Line shares similar properties to the Jedi Order. Because the Banite Sith were hidden and away from war, they were able to evolve their own teachings and grow in strength with each new apprentice. Both the Banite Line and the Jedi Order had access to millenia of teachings, teachings that would ultimately culminate with Grand Master Yoda and Darth Sidious.

In this sense, both Orders evolved. However, the Sith changed. The Jedi Order remained the same, waiting to fight a war similar to the previous wars. This was their ultimate downfall. The Sith had changed their philosophy, the Jedi had simply evolved. Before they knew it, they were playing Sidious' game, a game they were bound to lose.

The effectiveness of the Rule of Two is unquestionable, as is the advancement of the Jedi Order. To deny one is to deny the other.
Added Chapter 29 to The Shadows Fall
"My ultimate goal is the secret of life-that life that gives us consciousness, for without consciousness each of us is nothing. Through science, i will create new life and sustain my own. There is no reason Darth Plagueis could not live forever."

Beniboybling's Avatar


Beniboybling
02.24.2013 , 12:53 PM | #42
Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
Not only that, but increase in peace times allows a Jedi to train in their chosen form constantly, mastering it to the highest extent. Or they can branch out and master other forms like Yoda and Mace Windu.
Indeed, take Obi-Wan Kenobi. In the ten year period of peace between the Naboo Crisis and the Clone Wars he became an absolute master of Soresu - and his sheer skill in that form was constantly displayed through the Clone Wars, both against droids and against lightsaber wielders e.g. Grievous, Obi-Wan employed Soresu against him and quickly cut of several off his hands. I don't believe if Obi-Wan had been around during the Mandalorian Wars, the Jedi Civil War of the Great Galactic War he would have achieved such mastery.
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The effectiveness of the Rule of Two is unquestionable, as is the advancement of the Jedi Order. To deny one is to deny the other.
Very good point.

I would describe the Jedi Order and its lightsaber prowess as a wall. During times of war the wall falls constantly under siege, at times it is worn down but eventually reinforced to become even stronger, improved to be a more effective defense against its attackers. But at times the wall is destroyed and its builders killed, so those inexperienced who come to rebuild it make it weaker. However, during times of peace, the wall never falls and is never worn down, instead it is constantly reinforced and built upon - so when a threat finally arises it is an impenetrable bulwark against any form of attack, because it has had time to build defenses against them all. The only way to bring down the wall is from inside.

Aurbere's Avatar


Aurbere
02.24.2013 , 01:24 PM | #43
Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
[/COLOR]Indeed, take Obi-Wan Kenobi. In the ten year period of peace between the Naboo Crisis and the Clone Wars he became an absolute master of Soresu - and his sheer skill in that form was constantly displayed through the Clone Wars, both against droids and against lightsaber wielders e.g. Grievous, Obi-Wan employed Soresu against him and quickly cut of several off his hands. I don't believe if Obi-Wan had been around during the Mandalorian Wars, the Jedi Civil War of the Great Galactic War he would have achieved such mastery.
Very good point.

I would describe the Jedi Order and its lightsaber prowess as a wall. During times of war the wall falls constantly under siege, at times it is worn down but eventually reinforced to become even stronger, improved to be a more effective defense against its attackers. But at times the wall is destroyed and its builders killed, so those inexperienced who come to rebuild it make it weaker. However, during times of peace, the wall never falls and is never worn down, instead it is constantly reinforced and built upon - so when a threat finally arises it is an impenetrable bulwark against any form of attack, because it has had time to build defenses against them all. The only way to bring down the wall is from inside.
Well, Obi-Wan wasn't a full master of Soresu by the time Geonosis rolls around. But he had a higher skill with it than most Jedi. He does fully master it by the end of the war, as noted by Count Dooku when he is caught off guard by Obi-Wan's mastery of the form.

But other than that, I agree with your assessment.
Added Chapter 29 to The Shadows Fall
"My ultimate goal is the secret of life-that life that gives us consciousness, for without consciousness each of us is nothing. Through science, i will create new life and sustain my own. There is no reason Darth Plagueis could not live forever."

Ventessel's Avatar


Ventessel
02.24.2013 , 05:06 PM | #44
Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
Concerning lightsaber forms, Soresu and Shien, despite being tailored to reflecting blaster fire, are in fact effective against lightsaber wielding opponents. Soresu in particular is very effective against multiple opponents and specializes in wearing ones opponent down, waiting for them to make a mistake, and then striking out. It was highly effective.
Soresu is effective only when your opponent fulfills two conditions:
1. He does not cut through your defenses or tire you out first.
2. He makes a mistake that you can exploit.
It is a very passive form, great against blaster fire, but extremely inadvisable in a duel unless you are already certain of your superiority to your adversary.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
And while Shien is specifically for combating blaster wielding opponents, many Jedi also learned and mastered Djem So such as Khaat Qiyn, Aayla Secura, Zelice Sturm, Sora Bulq, Anakin Skywalker, Jedi Masters Plo Koon, Even Piell, Luminara Unduli, and Cin Drallig, and the Padawans Ahsoka Tano and Jax Pavan. Unduli being a good example, she mastered Soresu and supplemented that with Form V. In fact the only form I'd say that went out of use was Makashi, simply because is focused purely on lightsaber combat which in that period were rare. But nonetheless the forms of Form III and Form V are still formidable in the right hands.
This is basically the heart of the matter. Dueling forms like Makashi fell out of favor in the PT Era because there were very few duels.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
And concerning Juyo, it is true that their were likely a greater number of practitioners of Juyo in the time of the OR than the time of the the PT Jedi Order. However Juyo, from the moment of its creation, was regarded as unfavourable in the Jedi Order because it encouraged aggression etc. and was in fact more favored by the Sith. A Juyo practitioner would have the edge against a Soresu master, but only if they themselves were highly skilled, and given the almost 'taboo' nature of Juyo I doubt their were many in either eras. On the other hand their were many Soresu masters and skilled practitioners in the PT era.
Of course, in each era there would be masters of the forms that best suited the times. Soresu was essential for defending against blasterfire, and was probably the forte of the PT Era Jedi. Now, consider two equally skilled Jedi swordsmen, one practicing Soresu and one practicing Juyo. The Form VII user has the advantage in initiative and offense, and barring external variables, will likely break through the defenses of the Form III user and kill him before the Form III user can tire him out. (To put things in a different light: It's always better to shoot first. Ask Greedo.)

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
In this sense I would agree that OR Jedi would have more practitioners of the lightsaber dueling forms, but the forms of Soresu and Shien/Djem So can easily be adapted. And forms such as Ataru, Shii-Cho and Niman/Jar'Kai were equally effective.
I'm glad you agree on that point. And I would also point out that Djem So is a dueling form, just one that concentrates on also maintaining a defense against blaster fire as well.

Ataru has its uses, certainly. However, it also has its dramatic flaws. I believe Luke Skywalker (quite the accomplished swordsman, he defeated Darth Vader and numerous others) told his students to use Ataru only as a last resort to finish off an enemy, since it lacked defensive qualities and was overly tiring.
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"This style of fighting was taught to me by Master Yoda. In most cases, you will not use it as a first resort, but you'll find it often works as a last resort."
Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
And given the highly level of blaster wielding opponents in that time, and may I stress the great deal of peace time in which the Jedi would have the time to practice and perfect.
These are separate ideas, the blaster wielding opponents would push the Jedi to develop their deflection abilities, yes. We're still hashing out what exactly peacetime does for the Jedi's saber skills.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
However the fact is, and this is the crux of my argument, that those benefits are offset by the negatives of war and constant conflict. You argue that conflict unbalancing Jedi doesn't make sense, because it would make the Order defunct. But the fact is, they are. Jedi are keepers of peace, not soldiers - just like Windu says. And that applies to all Jedi of all eras. When Jedi become warriors and warmongers like they do in the OR period, many become unbalanced and lose affinity with the Force and so either embrace the darkside or become weakened.
There is a distinct difference between a warrior and a warmonger. I will elaborate on that later, but bear it in mind.
So...
Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
it would make the Order defunct... the fact is, they are.
Why do the Jedi even bother training for war if it's the one thing they try to avoid more than anything else?
How are they supposed to protect anyone if exposure to conflict destroys their abilities and focus?
Now that I think about it, I can't remember one war that the Jedi actually won by following the Jedi Code.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
And as Yoda later lamented:
"In this war, a danger there is of losing who we are."
And you may recall what Satele Shan said to the soon-to-be Hero of Tython after the latter took a life:
"Taking a life affects the Living Force, and the one who does the killing."

Imagine that but on a massive scale, also remember that this would have been an even greater problem in a war against biological and often angry/emotional enemies. The Jedi were obviously cautious and fearful of war because of the host of problems it brings and the affect it has on ones affinity with the light. The fact of the matter is, the Jedi Code and everything the Jedi stand for is fundamentally opposed to the concept of war, war and Jedi do not mix well and almost always lead to negative consequences. Its a fatal flaw of the Jedi and one I recognize, but that's just how it is.
This really makes it seem as though the cards are stacked heavily in the Dark Side's favor. The only threat to the Sith comes from the Jedi, who are basically allergic to war. If I were a citizen of the Republic, I would certainly sleep better knowing that my "guardians of peace and justice" were also unbalanced and fatally disrupted by any kind of emotional conflict.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
But of course the Jedi have recognize this flaw and there are ways to counter it, Jedi insist on entering battle with a clear head and maintaining inner serenity etc.
This advice is true universally, though. Lack of focus is fatal for any combatant, regardless of Force sensitivity. This doesn't seem to support the argument that Jedi have some special weakness to warfare.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
War simply doesn't work for Jedi, and that does make them rather defunct.
I'd like to think that's not strictly true, but the Jedi do seem to be incredibly bad at protecting the Republic from anything at all. Which raises the question of why they spend so much time studying fighting.

They are essentially an organization of warriors. The all carry lethal weapons, and train extensively in their use. Basically every force power that they practice is exclusively useful in combat, with the exception of Mind Trick and Healing. A Jedi's entire life is spent preparing to fight... but apparently they're not supposed to because that will make them weak and ruin their connection to the Force?!?!

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
Take the Mandalorian Wars, all who participated fell to the darkside. Do you really think that all the Revanchists simply embraced the darkside because their master did so? No, it was because the war and worn them down and weakened them, they lost touch with the light. Again like Kreia said;
"The Mandalorian Wars were a series of massacres that masked another war, a war of conversion. Culminating in a final atrocity that no Jedi could walk away from..."
This is a little bit of a separate argument, but the "war of conversion" that Kreia references was being fought by Revan. He was actively pushing the Jedi under his command to behave more aggressively. Revan was using the Mandalorian Wars, at least near the end, to drive his followers to the Dark Side. His war of conversion was an active attempt to draw his Jedi down the path he wanted them to follow.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
The Great Galactic War also shows examples of this, despite their abilities in precognition and foresight, they failed to see their betrayal at the hands of the Sith. Like Malgus said:
"As our powers of the dark side have blinded you."
Clearly. When have the Jedi's powers of foresight ever actually helped them?


Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
The prolonged conflict unbalanced the Jedi from the light and they became blinded by darkness and were therefore easily betrayed by the Sith. Did you not think it strange that no Jedi had a vision or any form of foresight predicting the destruction of the Jedi Temple?
Not really. It seems pretty par for the course. The Jedi apparently rely so exclusively on their precognition (the same precognition that they know is rendered useless by warfare...) that they never appear to take practical strategic considerations. I believe Kreia had a lot to say about an over-reliance on the force...

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
The same applies for Order 66, a combination of prolonged war and Sidious' dark side presence clouded the Jedi. But this is at a macro level, however I believe it applies at a micro level as well - the ability of a Jedi to wield a lightsaber is dependent on awareness, precognition and sense. I'd even go as far to say that was the reason so many Jedi where so easily cut down by the clones, the didn't sense anything, they didn't foresee the attack, and so were more easily cut down - even when they turned to face their enemies. Only the most powerful masters did, who had managed to keep focused in war e.g. Master Yoda.
Whoa there. Yoda survived because two clone troopers walked up behind him and he seemed to sense their ill intentions, allowing him to take them out before they shot him. All the other Jedi were massively outnumbered and just blown away by dozens of troopers. I'm not sure there are any swordsmen who could survive an ambush like that, regardless of skill.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
Concerning the Clone Wars, we have to remember that it was unlike any other war. It was a war not against Mandalorians, or soldiers, or Sith, but against droids. Droids not exhume emotions, they don't spur anger and rage and grief in a Jedi as a biological combatant would do. Its difficult to hate a droid for example. Wars before that were the equivalent to a maelstrom of emotions, emotions Jedi had to block out and often failed to do.
So, did the war disrupt the Jedi or not? First you're saying that this extended conflict blinded them to the Force, but now you're saying that this war didn't provoke very strong emotions from them. Which is it?


Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
So of course the Jedi grew stronger during this war, because it was like a massive training exercise with the droids being like advanced versions of training remotes. A perfect war if you will, in terms of honing skill with the lightsaber.
So, ah... where was this massive danger that Yoda spoke of earlier? The risk of losing themselves? Where was all this emotional turmoil coming from?

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
the PT Jedi Order have experience combat, even better, combat against droids, which removes all the negatives of combat with a biological.
No.
It does not remove any of the negatives of combat with a biological. Droids are entirely different from biologicals. They are uninventive and do not possess the instincts and adaptability which make living soldiers dangerous.

Furthermore, the Jedi are surrounded by Clone Troopers, who die by the bushel in this war. These guys are grown in tanks and flown straight to the slaughterhouses. If every death affects those around it, echoing through the Force, then there is going to be some massive blowback from the millions of Clone Troopers being fed into the meat grinder here. We even see Anakin and Obi-Wan becoming attached to the troopers who fight with them, like the clone pilots in Ep 3, and Commander Cody.

Now, you say that it's impossible to hate a droid. What if that droid guns down one of your friends? What if the army of droids that you're fighting has cost the lives of countless troopers under your command? There will be just as much emotional turmoil, the vengeful rage in battle, as there would be in any other conflict. There is no escaping it, so long as there are people involved in some aspect of the fighting.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
This would have been especially beneficial for Soresu practioners, who would have had constant training. Making the skills of Soresu practitioners in the PT era formidable, formidable enough to defeat a Jedi with experience fighting Sith.
Yes, they would be adept at blaster deflection, but where is the evidence that superb blaster deflection skills will give you the edge in a duel against a lightsaber?

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
And as a side note, Obi-Wan Kenobi did not rapidly improve during the course of the Clone Wars as you claim, few Jedi Masters did - Obi Wan become a Soresu master over the 10 year period of peace between the Naboo conflict and the Clone Wars.
Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
[/COLOR]Indeed, take Obi-Wan Kenobi. In the ten year period of peace between the Naboo Crisis and the Clone Wars he became an absolute master of Soresu
This period in which Obi-Wan mastered Soresu, isn't this also the period when he transitioned from Padawan to Master? When he fought Maul, he was a Padawan. By the time of his first duel with Dooku, Kenobi was a Jedi Master.
Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
Well, Obi-Wan wasn't a full master of Soresu by the time Geonosis rolls around. But he had a higher skill with it than most Jedi. He does fully master it by the end of the war
Shouldn't three years of constant warfare degraded Kenobi's abilities, rather then allowed him to perfect Soresu? If anything, his experiences in combat honed his skills with Soresu.

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
To suggest that there are veteran duelists around during war is foolish. The only reason Cin Drallig was at the Temple during the Clone Wars is because he is a teacher at heart. So Padawans had him to teach them the lightsaber forms.
Is it foolish? Let's explore that topic a little here. I think it was a mistake to have Cin Drallig instructing the Jedi so exclusively. It would have been much better to rotate in experienced combatants to better train the new Padawans, rather than have a cloistered academic lecture them. As we have seen, the first time Drallig drew his weapon in combat, he lost handily to an experienced duelist.
Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
As I said, times of war will not give Padawans access to veteran duelists, because those duelists are out of the front lines or dead.
You would have me believe that every Jedi stays in the line of battle non-stop? That no one rotates back to train the new Padawans, passing on their experience and simultaneously giving the Jedi a breather from the constant fighting to regain their balance? If that is the case, no wonder they never last long in a fight.

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
War, as I have already said, depletes the number of skilled duelists in any given Jedi Order, leaving less to train future generations who become comparatively weak. Case in point: Mical.
Case not in point. When Mical sought training, the Jedi Order had been practically extinguished by decades of warfare and the Jedi Civil War ... quite extraordinary circumstances, really. Not just any old conflict.

Also, while we're talking about Mical, the man is a Republic spy. Can we trust his supposed account of why he was turned down from training? How do we know that he wasn't accepted and simply expelled from the order later, or failed out of his training? Everyone who could possibly verify his story is conveniently dead. So let's take his story with a grain of salt.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
Concerning the long list of skilled duelists that I gave. What is more important to note is that they all mastered a form if not several. Many Jedi in the PT Order mastered a form. Which naturally makes them superior to an OR Jedi who has mastered few, if any, regardless of combat experience - note that I am not implying that this is the case, all though it would be for some in any given Order.
So what are you saying? That a trained master would defeat someone who had not mastered any forms? Well, obviously. What we're talking about are Jedi at equal points in their training, but only one of whom has experience with dueling in battle. The guy with the actual experience will have the edge, hands down.


Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
A master of Soresu is a master of Soresu, regardless of period.
Here's where we get into a grey area. I feel like throwing around the title of "Form XYZ Master" is a little bit like black belts. At first, having a black belt implied that you were one of the foremost practitioners of a martial art. Over time, though, the title was diluted. There evolved numerous degrees of the "black belt", and eventually the title became so diluted that my girlfriend's kid sister has one. So I'm not sure we can consider the title of "Soresu Master" to be a gold standard the remains unchanged throughout the ages.


Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
EDIT: An addendum to my argument about war unbalancing Jedi. It seems clear at least from the Great Galactic War that the Jedi managed to maintain a balance and keep focus, given their successes against the Republic. However the damaging effects of war are if anything often a glass ceiling, a Jedi can only gain so much affinity with the Light Side of the Force in a time of war were they are battling with emotions, the emotions of others and constant death that threatens to overwhelm them. Only in peace can a Jedi fulfill his true potential.
But is this argument supported at all? Almost every Jedi worth noting lived in times of conflict. I would argue that the ones who became truly great were the ones who rose to the challenges during their times and overcame the turmoil. Those Jedi who never knew war, and struggled against its challenges, never reached their full potential because nothing pushed them to achieve it. Peace is stagnant.

Quote: Originally Posted by Beniboybling View Post
And here is the scene in the Sith Warrior story where you meet Master Wylett, which I feel supports the above point.
So... the hermit Jedi is killed by the veteran Sith Warrior. Everything else is just gameplay. Outcome seems to support the idea that huddling in a cave doesn't do much for your survival in a duel.

Now, to move on to Aurbere's points...

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
The Jedi also dealt with the Trade Federation's battle droids on several occassions. Qui-Gon Jinn had to fight a fallen Jedi. The Jedi fought in the Yinchorri Uprising and the Stark Hyperspace War. So they had considerable combat experience, but you will say that they have no dueling experience. A previous post of mine proves you wrong. The Jedi dueled one another often. Sure it isn't life or death, but it is a learning experience and preparation for the real deal.
Qui-Gon fought one fallen Jedi. Very well. You're right that they don't have dueling experience, outside of their sparring sessions. And while sparring is good preparation for the real deal, it's still not the real deal.

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
But now we come to the now infamous Mace vs. Sidious topic. Mace Windu won. Sidious was only holding back his Force power, but his dueling skills were brought to bear. Mace Windu had given in fully to Vaapad, fighting like he had never fought before, but even then the battle was a stalemate. It wasn't until Anakin arrived that Mace Windu won.

Not to mention George saying Mace won. Sooo... yeah.
I'm not saying he didn't win. I'm just saying that it doesn't mean a darn thing. Sidious wanted to Mace to win the lightsaber duel, and he did. Mace played easily into Sidious' hand, so he really lost that battle.
As I have said countless times, there was no reason for Sidious to fight all out. He was just stalling, that's all.

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
[COLOR="darkgreen"]Such as Odan-Urr, Vodo Baas, and Arca Jeth. We can't question the power that these Jedi had, however, the difference between those above and the PT Jedi is time. Odan-Urr and Arca Jeth were two of the most powerful members of the Order at their time, but in comparison to their PT equivalents, they pale in power. This is because the Jedi Order has evolved over time, techniques advance and new members are able to take advantage of millenia of teachings.[COLOR]
What exactly do these millenia of teachings accomplish? There is only so much that can be learned about swordfighting, much less mastered in a single lifetime.
War is a swift, harsh teacher. You don't waste time learning useless things, because if you do you will die.
So these millenia of teachings passed down do not necessarily grant an increased capacity for lightsaber dueling.

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
The effectiveness of the Rule of Two is unquestionable, as is the advancement of the Jedi Order. To deny one is to deny the other.
Then I deny them both, at least in the light you see them.

The purpose of the Rule of Two was to shelter the Sith, to keep them hidden. It changed the focus of the Sith from open warfare to subtle infiltration. They stopped training legions of warriors and instead focused on slowly preparing to defeat the Jedi by subterfuge. Ultimately, the Jedi were not beaten by superior force users, but by an army of Clone Troopers and a war that had been engineered to set them up for the perfect ambush.
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Aurbere
02.24.2013 , 06:15 PM | #45
I'll let Beni answer his own points.

Quote: Originally Posted by Ventessel View Post
Is it foolish? Let's explore that topic a little here. I think it was a mistake to have Cin Drallig instructing the Jedi so exclusively. It would have been much better to rotate in experienced combatants to better train the new Padawans, rather than have a cloistered academic lecture them. As we have seen, the first time Drallig drew his weapon in combat, he lost handily to an experienced duelist.
Note who he was fighting- the Chosen One. Basically a Jedi that had surpassed the majority of the Jedi Order.

It was wise for Drallig to stay at the Temple to train others. It kept the Jedi Generals in the field, trusting that the Order's Battlemaster could sufficiently train the other Jedi.


Quote:
You would have me believe that every Jedi stays in the line of battle non-stop? That no one rotates back to train the new Padawans, passing on their experience and simultaneously giving the Jedi a breather from the constant fighting to regain their balance? If that is the case, no wonder they never last long in a fight.
Most of the time. And any breaks they take are to rest and recuperate. In such a grand conflict as the Clone Wars, the Jedi didn't have enough time to truly patake in the training of Jedi. The Republic had been too wide spread. As we see in the latest Clone Wars episode, most of the seats on the Council are empty or occupied by holographic figures.

Quote:
Qui-Gon fought one fallen Jedi. Very well. You're right that they don't have dueling experience, outside of their sparring sessions. And while sparring is good preparation for the real deal, it's still not the real deal.
Sparring is an excellent way to learn the ins and outs of lightsaber dueling. It allows a Jedi to know his limitations, and adapt or specialize in forms to reduce those limitations. In this sense, a Jedi who spars often will learn his limitations and weaknesses and will perfect his technique to remove said limitations and weaknesses. Obviously, no Jedi is without weakness, but sparring allows a Jedi to address these weaknesses. This gives a Jedi more time to strengthen himself overall than a Jedi constantly fightning war, as they will have little time to adapt. They would have to adapt 'on the fly.' See what I'm getting at here?

Quote:
I'm not saying he didn't win. I'm just saying that it doesn't mean a darn thing. Sidious wanted to Mace to win the lightsaber duel, and he did. Mace played easily into Sidious' hand, so he really lost that battle.
As I have said countless times, there was no reason for Sidious to fight all out. He was just stalling, that's all.
This particular debate has been going on for a long time. Multiple sources say that he did win, others say that Sidious faked it. Taking into account the novelization, I would say that Mace Windu did win the duel. However, in an all out fight, Sidious would destroy Mace Windu. And by all out, I mean Sidious using his Force powers like he did to Yoda.

However, I do remember George saying Mace won.


Quote:
What exactly do these millenia of teachings accomplish? There is only so much that can be learned about swordfighting, much less mastered in a single lifetime.
War is a swift, harsh teacher. You don't waste time learning useless things, because if you do you will die.
So these millenia of teachings passed down do not necessarily grant an increased capacity for lightsaber dueling.
Why do you say that? I'd say learning from the experiences of others is a pretty good teacher. The PT Jedi took the teachings of the past Jedi and revolutionized them. They studied their predecessors and learned from them. Several millenia of Jedi and several wars with the Sith serving as teachers for the Jedi. It is foolish to say that the Jedi didn't learn from the past to prepare for the future.

Quote:
Then I deny them both, at least in the light you see them.

The purpose of the Rule of Two was to shelter the Sith, to keep them hidden. It changed the focus of the Sith from open warfare to subtle infiltration. They stopped training legions of warriors and instead focused on slowly preparing to defeat the Jedi by subterfuge. Ultimately, the Jedi were not beaten by superior force users, but by an army of Clone Troopers and a war that had been engineered to set them up for the perfect ambush.
You are only partially correct. While that is one facet of the Rule of Two, the other part was for the Sith to gain in strength while the Jedi weakened. Obviously, the former happened, but not the latter.

The Rule of Two created the most powerful Sith Lord to ever exist, and the Golden Age produced the most powerful Jedi the Order had seen. You are ignoring the passage of time and believing that both sides simply twiddled their thumbs. Both sides were preparing for war, but the Jedi did not expect the war that the Sith were preparing to fight. Yoda himself says that the Order was preparing for another war with the Sith, what he wasn't prepared for was the evolution of the Sith from 'war mongers' to deceptive agents. He was not prepared to face the most powerful Sith Lord ever, not because of some lack of training, but because the Sith had evolved.

The Jedi had become stuck in a rut. They focused on preparing for full scale war while the Sith focused on destroying them from within, which was the only way they were going to do it.

But really, this arguing is pointless. Yoda is canonically the most powerful Jedi Pre-Luke, and Sidious is canonically the most powerful Sith Lord ever.
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Darkondo
02.24.2013 , 07:06 PM | #46
Also another reason for the Rule of Two which you have to take into account. Lord Kaan's Brotherhood of Darkness was an all time low for sith orders. Exar Kun's order, Revan and Malak's sith, The Sith Triumvirate, The GGW sith empire, King Adas' empire, Darth Desolous' sith, they all outclass The Brotherhood by a longshot. They had fallen so far, become so weak that they were unsalvageable and Darth Bane had to destroy them in order to rebuild sith strength.

Even Bane himself wasnt salvageable, he realized that rebuilding sith strength to be at its greatest would take time (1000yrs time) so he implemented the Rule of Two to make sure each new sith that came along was stronger than the last. He knew that he himself wouldnt ever be strong enough to destroy the jedi but he made a line that he knew would eventually become strong enough to do what he could not: destroy the jedi.

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Ventessel
02.24.2013 , 07:42 PM | #47
Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
Note who he was fighting- the Chosen One. Basically a Jedi that had surpassed the majority of the Jedi Order.
And he surpassed them while giving in to the Dark Side more and more, thriving on the Clone Wars and his many battles. What does that say about the Jedi?

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
It was wise for Drallig to stay at the Temple to train others. It kept the Jedi Generals in the field, trusting that the Order's Battlemaster could sufficiently train the other Jedi.
By himself. Just one dude, training the next generation of Jedi, eh?
For an order of precognitive warriors, that seems quite short sighted, doesn't it?

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
Most of the time. And any breaks they take are to rest and recuperate. In such a grand conflict as the Clone Wars, the Jedi didn't have enough time to truly patake in the training of Jedi. The Republic had been too wide spread. As we see in the latest Clone Wars episode, most of the seats on the Council are empty or occupied by holographic figures.
This was during the Clone Wars, the first experience with warfare in a millenium. Surely the Jedi had a more sustainable approach to training and running the Jedi Order during the days of more frequent warfare, especially when the Great Galactic War lasted 28 YEARS. That's older than Anakin Skywalker was when he became Darth Vader. The entire prequel trilogy could have been swallowed by this war.

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
Sparring is an excellent way to learn the ins and outs of lightsaber dueling. It allows a Jedi to know his limitations, and adapt or specialize in forms to reduce those limitations. In this sense, a Jedi who spars often will learn his limitations and weaknesses and will perfect his technique to remove said limitations and weaknesses. Obviously, no Jedi is without weakness, but sparring allows a Jedi to address these weaknesses. This gives a Jedi more time to strengthen himself overall than a Jedi constantly fightning war, as they will have little time to adapt. They would have to adapt 'on the fly.' See what I'm getting at here?
I'm not sure that I do. Sparring is fine preparation, but there's only so much it can do for you. Learning "on the fly" is actually just testing your training, and gives a warrior the best possible insight into his abilities by testing him to the ultimate limit. This is not something that can ever be replicated by training.

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
This particular debate has been going on for a long time. Multiple sources say that he did win, others say that Sidious faked it. Taking into account the novelization, I would say that Mace Windu did win the duel. However, in an all out fight, Sidious would destroy Mace Windu. And by all out, I mean Sidious using his Force powers like he did to Yoda.

However, I do remember George saying Mace won.
George barely understands his own characters, let alone what constitutes rational motivations for them. Taken at face value, we can only assume that Yoda is one of the most arrogant Jedi alive.

He goes by himself to confront the Sith Lord who killed four other Jedi masters? He flat out rejects Obi-Wan's request to fight the emperor, and instead of saying "Why don't we team up on him and then go kill Darth Vader?" Yoda just heads off on his own to get the biggest smackdown of his life. So Yoda is neither wise nor a very humble Jedi. So much for those thousands of years of teaching, eh?

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
Why do you say that? I'd say learning from the experiences of others is a pretty good teacher. The PT Jedi took the teachings of the past Jedi and revolutionized them. They studied their predecessors and learned from them. Several millenia of Jedi and several wars with the Sith serving as teachers for the Jedi. It is foolish to say that the Jedi didn't learn from the past to prepare for the future.
I think perhaps you're taking my specific thesis here and interpreting it in very broad strokes. The bottom line that I'm getting at is:
Jedi who frequently faced enemy lightsaber duelists would have developed superior skills to Jedi who did not have that experience.

Furthermore, the PT Era Jedi lacked these opportunities to hone their dueling skills, while Jedi who lived in the OR Era (or later eras, such as the NJO or Legacy) would have had ample experience with lightsaber combat.


Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
You are only partially correct. While that is one facet of the Rule of Two, the other part was for the Sith to gain in strength while the Jedi weakened. Obviously, the former happened, but not the latter.
I don't know about that, it certainly seems plausible that the Jedi became complacent and were more easily defeated because of it. Darth Malgus certainly seemed to think that the "cradle of power" had made the Jedi soft.


Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
The Rule of Two created the most powerful Sith Lord to ever exist, and the Golden Age produced the most powerful Jedi the Order had seen. You are ignoring the passage of time and believing that both sides simply twiddled their thumbs. Both sides were preparing for war, but the Jedi did not expect the war that the Sith were preparing to fight.
The Sith certainly didn't twiddle their thumbs. But there's no reason to suppose that two Sith, on their own, were going to be able to discover more about the Force than hundreds of Sith Lords studying and experimenting with it. They certainly discovered more nasty, dark secrets but it would have been quite slowly.

In short, I do not accept the premise that NOT fighting will somehow increase an organization's knowledge of combat.

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
Yoda himself says that the Order was preparing for another war with the Sith, what he wasn't prepared for was the evolution of the Sith from 'war mongers' to deceptive agents. He was not prepared to face the most powerful Sith Lord ever, not because of some lack of training, but because the Sith had evolved.
Where does it say that Yoda was preparing for war?
Also, it certainly seems like Yoda knew what the Banite Sith were all about. He is distinctly aware that there is always "a master and an apprentice" ... so he's clearly not expecting Malgus to swoop in with a dropship full of Sith Warriors. So I guess we're back to wondering if Yoda was senile, or just rather dense?

Quote: Originally Posted by Aurbere View Post
The Jedi had become stuck in a rut. They focused on preparing for full scale war while the Sith focused on destroying them from within, which was the only way they were going to do it.
Which Jedi, exactly, were preparing for all out war with the Sith? As near as I can tell, the Jedi mostly believed that the Sith were extinct, but that if they did come back, it would be only two of them...
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Ventessel
02.24.2013 , 07:45 PM | #48
Quote: Originally Posted by Darkondo View Post
Also another reason for the Rule of Two which you have to take into account. Lord Kaan's Brotherhood of Darkness was an all time low for sith orders. Exar Kun's order, Revan and Malak's sith, The Sith Triumvirate, The GGW sith empire, King Adas' empire, Darth Desolous' sith, they all outclass The Brotherhood by a longshot. They had fallen so far, become so weak that they were unsalvageable and Darth Bane had to destroy them in order to rebuild sith strength.

Even Bane himself wasnt salvageable, he realized that rebuilding sith strength to be at its greatest would take time (1000yrs time) so he implemented the Rule of Two to make sure each new sith that came along was stronger than the last. He knew that he himself wouldnt ever be strong enough to destroy the jedi but he made a line that he knew would eventually become strong enough to do what he could not: destroy the jedi.
I think it was more that Bane realized he would not be able to defeat the Jedi within his lifetime, and that it was smarter to take the long view and prepare a perfect revenge over time. Bane himself was a formidable Sith and accomplished combatant, but he lacked the power and support to take on the Jedi Order directly, and didn't have enough time in his life to train a suitable force. Thus, he opted for subterfuge.
The Heir to ChaosAdded Chapter Sixteen-- 17 APR 2013
“People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” ~ George Orwell

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Darkondo
02.24.2013 , 08:00 PM | #49
Quote: Originally Posted by Ventessel View Post
I think it was more that Bane realized he would not be able to defeat the Jedi within his lifetime, and that it was smarter to take the long view and prepare a perfect revenge over time. Bane himself was a formidable Sith and accomplished combatant, but he lacked the power and support to take on the Jedi Order directly, and didn't have enough time in his life to train a suitable force. Thus, he opted for subterfuge.
Im not denying that Bane wasnt powerful (although in your defense i made it sound like i viewed him as such). What im saying was that the Brotherhood was so weak that Bane had alot of catching up to do in restoring sith strength. He did become quite powerful, (id put him on par with Darth Revan) but his Banite line made sure each new sith would be stronger than the last including himself. Thus making him the weakest sith in his own line.

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Taleek
02.24.2013 , 08:15 PM | #50
I think there are far too many inconsistencies in Star Wars lore for this debate to have a real conclusion.
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