I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened.—Obi-Wan Kenobi, referring to the destruction of Alderaan, Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
A wound in the Force, also known as a hole in the Force, was a type of catastrophic disturbance in the Force. It was a weakness in the fabric of the Force caused by a traumatic event. The Force existed in all life, and when many lives were extinguished in a short period of time, a wound was created.
How could you ever hope to know the threat you faced when you have never walked in the dark places of the galaxy? Faced war and death on such a scale? If you had traveled far enough, rather than waiting for the echo to reach you, perhaps you would have seen it for what it was. There is a place in the galaxy where the dark side of the Force runs strong. It is something of the Sith, but it was fueled by war. It corrupts all that walks on its surface, drowns them in the power of the dark side—it corrupts all life. And it feeds on death.—Kreia, speaking to the Jedi Council, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords
Wounds in the Force were created whenever a massive loss of life occurred. All life in the galaxy was interconnected and when a significant number of lives were suddenly ended, the Force sustained a localized injury much like a sentient who had lost a limb. The epicenter of the wound became a dark place, filled with the reverberating echoes of the pain, terror, and suffering of the life forms who had lost their lives. Wounds in the Force were most often centered in astrographical locations where traumatic events took place, such as Malachor V or Alderaan, but they could also form within individuals such as the Jedi Exile or Darth Nihilus.
This echo travels in the places where death has walked, where planets have died. Massacres fuel its power, the death of life fuels it.—Zez-Kai Ell, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords
Wounds in the Force cast echoes throughout space much like the ripples in a pool of water. They coursed through the Force like a scream that only Force-adepts could hear. When a great tragedy took place, such as the destruction of Alderaan or the Battle of Malachor V, a Jedi could feel the reverberations of the disaster from half-way across the galaxy. Such echoes caused distortion in the Force itself much like white noise. Any Force user who was within close proximity to a wound could not be easily sensed from without due to the interference.
The dark sideEdit
The dark side clouds everything. Impossible to see, the future is.—Yoda, Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones
Historians have theorized that the life-destroying effects of the dark side could cause a breach in the Force—especially when wielded by one as powerful as a Sith Lord. Such a hypothesis never gained universal acceptance, but it did help to explain how such potent dark side users such as Darth Sidious were able to long hide their corruption from the Jedi High Council. It also explained why the dwellings and tombs of the Sith such as those on Dxun, Onderon, Korriban, and Yavin 4, remained dark and corrupted locations for millennia after they were abandoned.
I have heard tales of Malachor. It is said that many of my people felt the end of the Mandalorian Wars from across the galaxy.—Visas Marr, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords
In 3,960 BBY, a "wound" in the Force was created at Malachor V during the final battle of the Mandalorian Wars when a superweapon known as the Mass Shadow Generator was triggered by a Jedi General later known as the Jedi Exile. The Jedi Exile possessed an innate ability to easily form powerful Force bonds with those around her. Although she remained largely unaware of it, her unique skill allowed her to greatly influence her companions, and it made her a natural leader. However, during the battle of Malachor V, her gift became a liability. When she ordered Bao-Dur to activate the Mass Shadow Generator, thousands of military personnel that the Exile had befriended and led into battle were killed almost instantly. Incapable of enduring the psychic backlash of the destructive energies that she had unleashed, she was only able to survive the ordeal by instinctively severing her connection to the Force. Thereafter, the Exile was deafened to the Force, but she continued to project the echoes of the suffering that she had witnessed.
Jedi Civil WarEdit
Revan knew the power of such places... and the power in making them. They can be used to break the will of others, of Jedi, promising them power, and turning them to the dark side.—Kreia, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords
During the Jedi Civil War circa 3,959–3,956 BBY, Darth Revan made use of several locations that were believed to be the epicenters of large wounds in the Force. The Trayus Academy on Malachor V, Freedon Nadd's tomb on Dxun, the Sith Academy on Korriban, and the Rakatan Temple of the Ancients on Lehon all served as secret Sith bases. Throughout the war, Jedi were captured and brought to those locations where the ravenous and corruptive effects of the great breaches in the Force weakened their wills so that Revan and his loyal servants could easily lure them to the dark side. In such places, he converted hosts of Jedi into loyal Dark Jedi and Sith assassins for his Sith Empire.
It is the teaching of these new Sith, to feed on others, on other Force sensitives. They are symptomatic of the wound in the Force.—Vrook Lamarr, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords
During the Dark Wars that followed the Jedi Civil War, circa 3,956–3,951 BBY, the remaining Sith began to heavily experiment with ancient Sith techniques that Darth Revan had rediscovered while observing the devastating series of tragic events that characterized the Mandalorian Wars, and specifically, how those events affected the Revanchist Jedi who took part in them. Darth Traya, Darth Sion, and Darth Nihilus, the leaders of the remnant of Revan's Sith Empire—now known as the Sith Triumvirate—learned how to create and make use of wounds in the Force in order to hide their presence, leech power from the destruction of other lifeforms, and to hunt down the remaining Jedi through the Force. They and their legion of Sith assassins grew stronger with every kill they made, but in order to retain the power that they had acquired, they had to continually kill and feed on the life forms around them.
When the Jedi Council faced the Exile once more, years after they had exiled her from the Jedi Order for joining the Mandalorian Wars, Master Vrook Lamar told her, "You are a breach that must be closed. You transmit your pain, your suffering through the Force. Within you we see something worse than the teachings of the Sith. What you carry may mean the death of the Force... and the death of the Jedi." At that point in time, the Jedi Masters could see that if she allowed herself to fall to the dark side, she could have become a predator of life like Darth Nihilus—a Sith Lord who had abandoned his very humanity in his phenomenally destructive quest to acquire greater power and satisfy his ever-present hunger.
The Exile returned to Malachor V to confront Darth Traya, as well as to seal the wound left there. Bao-Dur's remote was sent to reactivate the downed Republic ships to power the Mass Shadow Generator. After the Exile defeated Traya, she ordered the generator's activation, destroying the planet and sealing the wound once and for all.
Galactic Civil WarEdit
That place...is strong with the dark side of the Force.—Yoda, speaking of the dark side cave, Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
After the rise of Palpatine, Yoda fled to the planet Dagobah where he hid in the shadow of a Dark Side Cave. He chose to live in that Force nexus because it provided some concealment against those who were hunting for him.
In 0 ABY, Moff Tarkin created a hole in the Force when he used the first Death Star to destroy the planet Alderaan—an event that killed every living thing on the planet almost instantaneously. Such a catastrophic event sent shock waves through the Force which Obi-wan Kenobi was able to detect all the way from the Outer Rim territories.
The Rebel Alliance birthed yet another wound over Endor when they destroyed the second Death Star in 4 ABY. The annihilation of the battle station's entire crew, combined with the deaths of Darth Sidious and those who fell during the battle of Endor, created a powerful breach that caused Leia Organa to collapse upon her return to Endor five years later.
New Republic EraEdit
In 11 ABY, Kyp Durron destroyed the Caridan system with the Sun Crusher and the echoes of the disturbance were felt by the students of the Jedi Praxeum on Yavin 4. The slaughter of the Eol Sha colonists, on the planet Dantooine also created echoes that were felt by Jedi trainee Gantoris. Yet another disturbance felt by the students on Yavin 4 was the massacre on Pydyr by Kueller in 17 ABY.
Yuuzhan Vong WarEdit
The destruction of Sernpidal was felt in the Force by Luke Skywalker.
Ben Skywalker, born during the Yuuzhan Vong's invasion of the Galaxy, was able to sense the pain and suffering so acutely that he shut himself off from the Force and refused to use it throughout the early years of his life.
- Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
- Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords (First identified as a "Wound in the Force")
- Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (First appearance)
- Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
- Shadows of the Empire novel
- Phantom Menaces (Non-canonical appearance)
- Dark Force Rising
- Dark Empire
- Dark Apprentice
- I, Jedi
- Champions of the Force
- The New Rebellion
- Balance Point
- Force Heretic III: Reunion
- "Clouded Paths"