Form VI, also known as Niman, was the sixth form of lightsaber combat used by members of the Jedi Order. It could be used to combine double-bladed lightsaber combat with other Force abilities, like pushes and lifts. Darth Maul had mastered this form and employed it in his duel against Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Theed power generator.
The sixth form of lightsaber combat was the last to obtain widespread acceptance in the Jedi Order. In the centuries following its development, Niman largely eclipsed the other forms in popularity, in many ways becoming the new standard for the Jedi. To many Jedi, Niman was the result of the natural progression of lightsaber combat. Further, in a time of relative peace, some Jedi perceived the other lightsaber forms as outdated.
In many ways, Niman represented the synthesis of previous forms. By balancing the various qualities and approaches of Forms I through V, Form VI avoided many of the weaknesses inherent in those forms. However, it also failed to achieve their full strengths, which led to some Jedi Masters to malign it as a diluted form.
Form VI emphasized balance and harmony. In some ways, Niman was not as potent-at least in the sense of deadly-as other lightsaber forms, and this was quite intentional on the part of its developers. The Jedi who contributed to Niman's development sought to master a style of lightsaber combat that could achieve victory without dominating the opponent. They wanted to defend themselves and even deliver justice without the temptation of power.
For these Jedi, Form IV's approach, with its reliance on swiftly overpowering an opponent, was too aggressive. In spite of these moral concerns, it was also likely that these Jedi simply wanted an effective combat style that did not require the intense physical training of Forms IV and V.
Overall, Niman was less demanding physically than the other forms, thanks in part to its increased focus on the application of Force powers over bladework. For this reason, it was an attractive option for Jedi who wished to commit their energies to studies of areas outside of the martial. Of course, this was not to say that Form VI was ineffective. However, to compete with more dedicated lightsaber forms, a Niman practitioner had to exercise greater use of Force powers beyond the enhancement that was common to all combat styles.
Form VI made extensive use of the Force to hinder or manipulate opponents' movements. These techniques could draw opponents within range for a lightsaber strike, push them away as a defensive measure, or even bind them in place. Some more martially inclined Jedi saw this approach as a poor substitute for blade expertise, but Niman proved both highly effective and popular. By the time of the Clone Wars, Niman was the most commonly practiced lightsaber form. To some warriors of more traditional inclinations, this was a sign of dangerous complacency.
Niman in practice
In battle, Niman more closely resembled Form III or Form V than the more aggressive forms. Its approach was carefully balanced but tended to favor defense. This reflected its origins and explained its popularity among Jedi whose primary interests lied outside the martial pursuits. However, Niman was as distinctive as any other lightsaber form, and any Jedi or anyone thoroughly educated in the traditions of the Jedi, could recognize it immediately.
With its extensive integration of Force powers, Niman was the least physical of the lightsaber forms, and in fact was quite unique among all martial arts traditions in the galaxy's history. For a Niman practitioner, the strength of will was at least as important as physical agility and power. A fighter using Form VI had to possess not only sufficient mastery of the Force to maneuver an opponent about the battlefield, but also the mental discipline to resist relying overly on physical strikes.
- Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace (First appearance)
- Star Wars: Forces of Destiny—Ahsoka & Padmé (Mentioned only)
- (Indirect mention only)
- Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know (First identified as Form VI) (First identified as Niman)
- Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia
- Star Wars: Destiny – Spark of Hope (Card: )
- Knights of Fate
- "Lightsabers and Jedi Equipment" – Star Wars Encyclopedia