Form VII, known by its two primary disciplines of Juyo and Vaapad; and also known as The Ferocity Form, was the seventh form of lightsaber combat. It was considered the most aggressive and unpredictable form. Both Mace Windu and Depa Billaba were the only known masters of the Vaapad variant in the Jedi Order that hadn't fallen to the dark side of the Force though the latter Jedi Master mainly used Form III in close-quarters combat. The Juyo variant was very popular among dark side adepts such as Darth Maul, a Sith Lord, and The Grand Inquisitor, an Inquisitorius member.
Form VII: Juyo
Although Juyo was designated Form VII, its development began millennia before it was formalized. In fact, Juyo likely originated in techniques rejected from Shii-Cho in the earliest days of the Jedi Order, techniques considered too aggressive and dangerous. In the long centuries following, the techniques that would come to constitute Juyo were sometimes practiced openly, sometimes in secret. Eventually, the Ferocity Form gained recognition by the Jedi High Council, only to be banned less than a century later.
Juyo was an intensely aggressive form, even more so than Form IV. What truly differentiated it from other lightsaber forms was the emotional state it fostered, and even required. Form VII was known as the Ferocity Form with good reason; not only did Juyo utilize a highly aggressive offense, but it required the practitioner to actively draw upon their anger and negative emotions to fuel the relentless assault.
Unsurprisingly, Form VII was controversial from its inception, and many saw its practice as a fundamental violation of the Jedi Code's strictures against passion and chaos. It is likely that the Jedi Council recognized the form only because of the desperate nature of the time in which it arose, during a resurgence of the Sith approximately four thousand years before the Clone Wars. For decades, Juyo saw significant use among both the Jedi and their ancient enemies as the two orders of Force users battled. Yet, by the end of this great war against the Sith, many Jedi who practiced Form VII had fallen to the dark side or come perilously close. In the aftermath of the conflict, with the reckoning clear, the Jedi Council forbade the study of Juyo. Over the following millennia, this prohibition gradually relaxed to an extent, but Form VII would never again be practiced by Jedi save those who received express permission from the council or who defied the council's will.
To maintain the onslaught of Form VII without exhausting oneself, giving the enemy an opening, or sacrificing accuracy, a practitioner had to channel the Force with every movement and strike. This focus was a large part of what makes Juyo so dangerous to the enemy, but it also posed a danger to the warrior. Because Form VII drew on a negative emotional state, drawing so heavily and continuously on the Force brought the practitioner perilously close to the dark side of the Force.
Form VII: Vaapad
The sole Form VII variant to have gained recognition by the Jedi Council, Vaapad was only created in the final decades of the Jedi Order. The key architect of Vaapad was Jedi Master Mace Windu, who developed the form to address his own weakness by controlling his inner darkness and channeling into worthy ends. For this purpose, he refined advances from the preceding centuries and in the minds of some, finally perfected Form VII as a true lightsaber form in line with the tenets of the Jedi Code.
Only a handful of Jedi trained in Vaapad prior to the enactment of Order 66 and the destruction of the Jedi Order. Even Windu himself was wary of allowing others to study the form, outside of his own Padawan pupil, well aware of the danger it posed. Practitioners of Vaapad drew on their anger and passion, but never gave in to them. Compared with the other lightsaber forms, which directed warriors to master their emotions, Vaapad's approach was dangerous. However, it was not as reckless as Juyo's manner of employing unchecked aggression.
Despite its refinement over Juyo, Vaapad was clearly Form VII at its core when seen in battle. The Form VII practitioner fought with controlled fury, laying about with a combination of frenzied, rapid strikes and powerful blows. Both variants of the form were as demanding physically as they were emotionally, and in some ways hark back to the direct, kinetic simplicity of Shii-Cho.
- Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace (First appearance)
- Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones
- Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith
- Star Wars: Force Collection (Card: Depa Billaba (★★★))
- Star Wars: Force Collection (Card: Mace Windu [Master of Vaapad] (★★★★★)) (First identified as Vaapad)
- (Indirect mention only)
- Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know (First identified as Form VII) (First identified as Juyo)
- Star Wars Character Encyclopedia: Updated and Expanded
- Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia
- Knights of Fate
- Star Wars Helmet Collection 72 (Databank A-Z: Mace Windu)
- "Lightsabers and Jedi Equipment" – Star Wars Encyclopedia