- "We are at war! The Dark Council has placed me in charge and battles are being waged across the galaxy."
- ―Darth Baras
After twelve years of tenuous peace in the form of the Cold War, the actions of several powerful individuals caused open warfare to break out once more between the major galactic powers.
The conflict eventually came to an end with the emergence of the Eternal Empire under Emperor Arcann, whose forces overran both the Republic and the Sith Empire and forced them into submission. Both governments signed treaties with the Eternal Empire and began paying tribute to the third power.
The return of the Sith Empire to known space in 3681 BBY marked a turning point in galactic affairs. Though the Galactic Republic had suffered greatly in recent centuries, the ferocious war unleashed by the Empire posed an existential threat unlike anything in living memory.
After nearly three decades of fighting, the two powers settled on an uneasy truce meant to conclude the war. Over a decade of peace followed, but it was neither civil nor enduring. Longstanding grievances, exacerbated by the actions of powerful individuals on both sides, served to re-ignite the paused conflict into war once again.
Collapse of peace
Settling old scores
The outbreak of a new war between the Empire and Republic was preceded by a number of proxy clashes, among them the conclusion of several conflicts which had been left unresolved at the close of the previous war between the two great powers.
With the end of the last war, the Empire declared victory in their long struggle for control of the industry world Balmorra. Ultimately, however, the celebration proved to be premature. Elements within the Republic Army refused to cede defeat, choosing instead to defy the Treaty of Coruscant by remaining on Balmorra and forming a resistance movement in partnership with the planet's natives. After over a decade of guerrilla warfare, Republic interests finally prevailed when a Jedi Consular rallied the resistance and drove the Empire from the planet.
Meanwhile, in the Outer Rim, the Empire scored a victory of its own. For a number of years during the Cold War, the Republic had made an effort to turn the ruined world Taris into a symbol of hope, by rebuilding the planet following its devastation at the hands of the Sith three centuries earlier, during the Jedi Civil War. The Republic's efforts would ultimately prove fruitless, as Darth Gravus spearheaded an effort to sabotage the project by eliminating key supporting personnel. With their deaths, the project collapsed and the Republic's work to restore the planet came to an end. Even as they were being driven from Balmorra, the Empire was able to claim victory on Taris.
Shadows of the past
During the strain on the tenuous peace, Republic Navy Fleet Admiral and Jedi Master Oteg was contacted by the spirit of the long-dead Jedi Knight Meetra Surik. Having vanished from Republic space three centuries earlier, Surik had died in a failed attempt to slay the Sith Emperor with her old Master, the legendary Knight Revan. Revan, meanwhile, had been captured by the Emperor and detained in a form of stasis for the intervening centuries. With the conflict between Republic and Empire again heating up, Surik knew that the time had come for Revan to be freed from captivity.
Following an intelligence-gathering assault on the Imperial fortress at Taral V, Oteg led his fleet into The Maelstrom to attack the Imperial prison facility inside. A fierce battle—one of the first of the soon-to-be new war—ensued, with both sides taking heavy casualties. Ultimately Oteg's fleet prevailed, successfully retrieving Revan before withdrawing from the area. With his freedom, Oteg believed that the Republic had obtained the means by which to finally defeat the Empire.
Revan's respite and sojourn to Republic space would be brief. Now fully aware of the crisis facing the galaxy, he set out to utterly destroy the Empire with the aid of ancient Rakata technology, an automated mass-manufacturing space station known as the Foundry. The Foundry was set to manufacture countless extermination droids designed with bioscanners to detect Sith genetic material, and destroy any life containing it—which would result in the genocide of the vast majority of the Imperial population.
The Empire had prepared for this situation. Darth Malgus, long opposed to the peace with the Republic, revealed to his chosen strike team that the rescue of Revan had been Malgus' own design. He intended that Revan would lead the Empire to the Foundry, in order that it could be used by the Empire in the coming war against the Republic. The Imperial strike team was successful in their attack on the Foundry, destroying the few active extermination droids already built before defeating the Jedi "hero" himself. But rather than die, Revan vanished in a mysterious burst of light and energy, his fate unknown. After mopping up the remaining Republic starships, the Empire claimed victory—and with it, ownership of the Foundry.
Hunt for the Sith Emperor
Elsewhere in the galaxy, Jedi Master Tol Braga set in motion an ambitious plan which he hoped could pre-emptively avert the coming war: to capture and subsequently redeem of the Sith Emperor to the light side of the Force.
Braga's quest enlisted the aid of a rising Jedi star who, by that point, had become known as the Hero of Tython due to their role in saving Tython from destruction at the battle of the Oppressor. The Hero traveled the galaxy for this mission, seeking out clues as to the whereabouts and technical specifications of the Emperor's highly secretive space station, conducting investigations on Balmorra, Quesh, and finally Hoth. The attack on the Emperor's person went poorly for the Jedi strike team—the entire force was captured, and most of the Jedi were effortlessly subdued by the Emperor's admirable command of the dark side of the Force.
The end of the peace treaty was also aggressively pursued by Darth Baras through his apprentice. Baras set into motion his years-in-the-making Plan Zero, a plot with the two-fold objectives of assassinating the Republic's War Trust military leadership, and in so doing, ignite a war in which the Republic would no longer have the leadership necessary to prevail. The mission was an Imperial success, seeing Baras' apprentice eliminate every one of the targets to re-ignite open war between the Empire and the Republic.
Threats from within
At the start of hostilities, both powers were beset by serious threats from within. The intervening decade of relative peace had not been an idle one for the covert communities of the galaxy, seeing many deep-cover operatives installed, who could seriously undermine the war effort of both sides.
The Sith Emperor's long-term project, the Children of the Emperor, saw his agents unwittingly placed into Republic society, each rising to levels of significant power and influence—among them Syo Bakarn, a member of the Jedi Council. While most were unaware of their true natures, they remained puppets to the Emperor's will, bound to obey his wishes. It fell to the Jedi Order's Barsen'thor to seek out these agents and remove them as threats, a quest which took them to Voss and Corellia, among other places.
Within the inner circles of the Empire, Darth Baras made his own play for power, seriously threatening the stability of the state. The successful completion of Plan Zero saw Baras elevated onto the Dark Council, where he soon acted against his Emperor. Baras' saw to it that the current embodiment of the Emperor's Voice would be trapped on the planet Voss with no means of escape. In the Emperor's absence, Baras falsely claimed to be the new Emperor's Voice, in order that he could rule the Empire himself. However, in his play for power, Baras betrayed his apprentice. This would set off a chain of events leading to his apprentice being named the Emperor's Wrath, who would then go on to slay Baras in single combat.
The Emperor's ritual crisis
After a length of time as a willing servant of the Emperor, the Jedi Knight known as the Hero of Tython was redeemed and freed. The spirit of the Hero's old master, Orgus Din, helped to break the influence of the Emperor's will, while physically freed with the assistance of the Imperial turncloak, Lord Scourge. Scourge, while no friend to the Jedi or the Republic, knew that the Emperor had designs which went beyond political or philosophical differences—the Emperor planned to use a Sith ritual to enhance his own power and lifespan by destroying all life in the galaxy.
Armed with this knowledge, the Hero, Scourge, and their allies set out to stop the Emperor's plan. When word came that fanatically loyal followers of the Emperor had attacked the Republic prison world Belsavis, the group knew that it would be the first target of the Emperor's genocidal plans. Upon arrival at Belsavis, the group fought to end the Imperial incursion and avert their mission before the Emperor's ritual could begin. While there, the group encountered the Dread Masters, a group of immensely powerful dark side users who had been incarcerated for several decades. In the chaos, the Dread Masters were able to escape their imprisonment, which would have dire consequences for the galaxy in the following year.
Battle of Corellia
Not long after the incident on Belsavis and another on Voss, the Republic and the Empire came to blows in the first major armed battle of the new war. Imperial forces under the command of Darth Decimus, after months of negotiations with corrupt officials, launched a full-scale invasion of the prestigious Core world Corellia. In spite of the negotiated agreement with some officials, Imperial forces conquered many areas by force anyway.
The Imperial invasion of Corellia marked the Emperor's third attempt at mass murder in order to start his galaxy-destroying ritual of Sith sorcery. The Hero, Scourge, and their allies rushed to the beleaguered world to avert the crisis, learning that Jedi Councillor-turned-Sith Emperor fanatic, Tol Braga, was leading the operation. Eventually the Hero was able to confront their old ally, and defeated him in combat before returning the Kel Dor master to the light.
In the months of fighting and occupation, Corellia suffered millions of casualties.
Confronting the Emperor
- "Survival is not our goal here—only destroying the enemy."
"We get one shot at this. We win, or die trying."
"Every one of us is expendable. If the galaxy is to survive, the Emperor must fall."
- ―Lord Scourge and the Hero, to the rest of their group
Pressing their victory, the Republic and Jedi forces pushed on to a bold counterstrike—a direct attack on the Imperial capital planet, Dromund Kaas, and with it, an attack on the Sith Emperor himself.
While the Republic Fleet engaged the Imperial First Defense Fleet in orbit, a strike team commanded by the Hero of Tython descended to the stormy world to confront the Emperor and determine the fate of the galaxy. After battling their way through the Imperial capital, the team entered the inner sanctum of the Emperor: the Dark Temple. The group separated to pursue various objectives, while the Hero went on with the faithful droid companion T7-O1 to battle the dark overlord.
The Hero and the Emperor, in a new Voice body since their last encounter on Voss, battled ferociously, with the Emperor employing numerous dark side abilities and tricks to defeat his opponent. Ultimately, however, the Hero prevailed and slew the Emperor's host. His consciousness critically damaged, the essence of the Emperor retreated to his own body to hibernate for rest and recovery. Though the Emperor was not completely defeated, his state had been effectively left without a ruler.
The defeat of the Sith Emperor—while not initially revealed to the public by either power—was a stunning blow to the Empire, but it did not have the hoped-for effect of assuring swift Republic victory. Rather, it served to splinter the larger conflict into a number of smaller ones as various factions rose and vied for prominence in the ensuing chaos.
The New Empire
One of the first to seize advantage of the new circumstances was the long-dissatisfied Sith Lord Darth Malgus. Nursing decades-long grudges against the Dark Council over the Treaty of Coruscant, as well as for their own infighting and exclusionary practices, Malgus seized the opportunity to proclaim himself ruler of the New Empire.
Already in possession of the Foundry facility from the early struggle with Revan, Emperor Malgus also seized control of the Sith Emperor's now-abandoned space station. Malgus quickly searched out allies and others sympathetic to his belief that the Sith could only survive and be improved by constant warfare. Among the new allies was the Schism Collective, a technologically adept group who quickly adapted the Foundry's mass-production technologies for use on the Emperor's space station.
Following a string of victories in the Unknown Regions, Malgus and his forces gathered and struck at Ilum, a planet notable both as a place sacred to the Jedi Order as well as for its natural production of Adegan crystals. The goals of the New Empire were twofold: first, Malgus intended to destroy both the Republic and Sith Empire forces there as punishment for disloyalty. Second, the capture of the planet's crystals would provide an invaluable military resource for the fledgling state. The already-contested world quickly found itself besieged by a new player in the Galactic War.
Both Republic and Imperial forces were forced to turn and engage the New Imperial attackers, which was ultimately to the benefit of the Republic as the two Imperial groups whittled away each others' strength. A strike team was eventually able to board Malgus' commandeered space station and fight their way to his throne room. There, Malgus was defeated in combat, bringing an end to his New Empire.
The assault on Ilum, at first a major threat, had turned into an overwhelming victory for the Republic forces. Malgus' New Empire was vanquished, and in the fighting, the Sith Empire's forces on Ilum had been severely reduced. The outcome of the battle left the Republic firmly in control of Ilum, and deprived the Sith Empire of access to the valued Adegan crystals.
Operation End Game
The Ascendant Spear, a Terminus-class destroyer by design, began to be modified into a long-range battle cruiser near the end of the Cold War. With enhanced hyperdrive capabilities and a devastating megalaser primary weapon, the Ascendant Spear was considered by many to be an Imperial superweapon. It would be commanded—directly—by Darth Karrid through a cybernetic interface.
The Republic had become aware of the ship several years earlier, when a covert SIS operation had uncovered its existence in the Vesla system. Eventually, the understanding of the threat coalesced into a mission to Imperial space in which SIS agent Theron Shan teamed with Jedi Master Gnost-Dural to steal a black cipher encryption device from the Empire in order to track the ship's movements. The functionality of the encryption device was proven when the SIS learned of an impending imperial attack on the Republic agriworld Ruan. But, in order to protect the knowledge that the Republic possessed the cipher device, Supreme Commander Jace Malcom was unable to send any military assistance to aid the doomed world. The Imperial forces attacked, killing thousands and destroying Ruan's agricultural production capabilities.
Karrid began selection of her next target, while Republic forced hurriedly arranged for a trap to be laid. Through the actions of Republic covert intelligence, Darth Karrid was lured into attacking the Republic shipyards at the planet Duro. The ambush was a success. The Republic forces under Supreme Commander Malcom were able to engage and destroy the fleet commanded by Moff Nezzor, which in turned allowed Agent Shan and Master Gnost-Dural to infiltrate the Ascendant Spear itself. The pair were able to defeat Karrid, and the Imperial superweapon was destroyed.
Return of the Dread Masters
Unknown to the Republic, the apparent death of the Sith Emperor had also caused another serious fracture in the Imperial hierarchy: the secession of the recently-freed Dread Masters. Long subservient to the Emperor's will, this group of immensely powerful Force-wielders found no-one worthy of their loyalty after his "death" and struck out on their own with intentions of coming to rule over the galaxy themselves. The machinations of these Dread Lords would also lead the Republic and the Empire into a fresh round of hostilities. The Dread Host launched a series of surgical strikes on Hutt Space designed to sew chaos and uncertainty in the region.
Rise and fall of the Hutt Cartel
In response to the attacks and lost territories, the Hutt Cartel, under the leadership of Karagga, seized control of 10 neutral star systems, which in turn drew the attention of both the Republic and the Empire. Alarmed by the unexpected threat, both powers sent strike forces to confront the Hutt Supreme Mogul and demand that he answer for it.
The confrontation on Hutta quickly descended into violence, and the strike team fought their way into the heart of Karagga's Palace, where Karagga himself was slain. The immediate threat presented by the naked Hutt aggression had been stopped, but a far more serious threat was revealed. Intelligence gathered from the raid revealed the role in the Dread Masters' attacks in prompting the Hutts' expansionism, putting both the Empire and the Republic on guard against the previously unknown threat.
The danger would have to wait, however, as Hutt aggression had not yet ended. In the wake of Karagga the Unyielding's death, Toborro rose to power as the new Supreme Mogul of the Hutt Cartel, bringing with him grandiose dreams of a galaxy ruled not by the Republic or Sith Empire, but rather by a Hutt Empire. The key to Toborro's designs lay on the non-aligned world Makeb; the galaxy's only source of the substance isotope-5. Isotope-5 possessed powerful gravity-altering properties, which had the potential to provide a near-unlimited source of power. Utilizing this newfound power would allow the Hutts the opportunity to wrest control of the galaxy away from both of the major powers.
Through a combination of force and bribery of local security forces, the Hutt Cartel seized control of Makeb. The capture of the planet drew the ire of both the Republic and the Empire, though for markedly different reasons. Within the Republic, officials were alarmed that the invasion was a pretext for a larger Hutt war of conquest—a reasonable concern, given Toborro's dreams—while the Empire had identified isotope-5 as an important means of recovering from the losses they had suffered at Corellia, Dromund Kaas, and Ilum.
The Republic's arrival initially went well for its emissaries: the Makeb locals with no loyalty to the Hutts would gladly join the Republic in exchange for the liberation of their world. A mission to rescue the niece of the rebel leader was undertaken, which turned up shocking new intelligence. The increased groundquakes experienced since the Hutt invasion were, as had been suspected, a direct result of the Hutts' deep core drilling projects. Worse, the geologic instability paired with the gravity-warping effects of isotope-5 meant that time was short before Makeb would be rendered uninhabitable.
The rescued niece, Dr. Lemda Avesta, had overheard what was believed to be valuable intelligence during her time as a prisoner of the Hutts. Terms such as "Project Failsafe" and "the Ark" lent hope and the belief that there was a means by which Makeb could be saved from destruction. This intelligence had been misinterpreted. In truth, Project Failsafe was a means by which the insane Hutt leader could flee the planet's destruction with all the mined isotope-5. Republic forces were successful in capturing the Ark and repurposing it for the evacuation of the people of Makeb.
Having finally realized that their Supreme Mogul was insane, the other leaders of the Hutt Cartel turned on him and went to the Republic for help. In exchange for allowing them to join the evacuation aboard the Ark, the Hutts agreed to end their neutrality and join the Galactic War on the side of the Republic. After retrieving the Ark's fuel rods from Toborro's Palace, in the process killing the deranged Hutt leader, the Republic and its allies were able to begin the evacuation of the planet.
Even as the Republic-aligned group prepared to flee, Imperial forces had arrived on planet without their knowledge. Racing against time, their force rushed to stabilize the core of the dying world in order to take control of the isotope-5 resources. Their mission proved overwhelmingly successful; the planet's core was stabilized, and in the process the surface was devastated by massive tectonic and volcanic activity—which appeared to the Republic forces as the planet destroying itself, just as they expected.
The battle for Makeb ended up a great boon to the Empire's war ambitions. While the Hutt Cartel was now ostensibly allied with the Republic, the Dark Council-ruled Empire was now in possession of virtually all of the isotope-5 supply.
The Dread War
The architects of the Hutts' follies, meanwhile, had been making other inroads toward galactic dominance. After a skirmish for resources on Denova, the Dread Lords came to dominate local warlord Kephess, who subsequently declared the world independent. The Trandoshan's victory would be short-lived, as both Republic and Empire dispatched forces to eliminate him and continue their fight for the planet.
For their next effort, the Dread Masters turned to a darker approach to war. They resurrected their slain Trandoshan puppet and sent him to the ancient Gree world Asation, or more specifically, to take control of the Grand Hypergate located there. The Dread Masters intended to use this ancient technology to call forth ancient and powerful horrors from beyond known space, to aid in their plans of destroying the Republic and Empire both. A call for help from the local Gree population resulted in Republic and Imperial forces being dispatched, who ultimately defeated the so-called Terror From Beyond and put an end to the Dread Masters' plans on Asation.
Eventually, the Dread Masters' base of operations was located on the planet Oricon, on the fringes of Imperial space. After the loss of numerous ships to the battle meditation technique of the dark lords of Oricon, Republic and Imperial forces secured a temporary truce in order that the greater threat of the Dread Masters could finally be eliminated. The joint strike team was able to infiltrate the Dread Fortress and confront the Dread Masters directly. In the arduous fight that followed, the strike team emerged victorious: the Dread Masters were killed, ending their threat to the galaxy forever.
Strikes at the heart
In the midst of the conflict, Republic agents were contacted by Colonel Rian Darok and SIS agent Shan concerning a vital opportunity: a direct assault on the Korriban Sith Academy and Dark Council Chambers. The mission was to be straightforward smash-and-grab, seizing data from the Dark Council's database while inflicting as much collateral damage as possible.
The mission was a qualified success. The invading Republic forces faced stiff resistance, including Sith researcher Lord Renning and Dark Councilor Darth Soverus. Both were slain, and the Republic forces were successful in forcing their way to the Dark Council chamber and seizing the objective. Ultimately, however, the invaders were forced to retreat from Imperial forces reinforcing the Academy.
Unknown to Shan and the Republic attackers, Sith forces under Darth Arkous had begun their own attack on the heart of the Jedi, invading the Jedi homeworld of Tython. As with the Republic's mission to Korriban, the Sith's attack on Tython was to be a smash-and-grab operation as well. Arkous commanded his strike force to steal data from the Jedi Archives while inflicting as much damage as possible.
Sith forces invaded the Jedi homeworld, launching an assault with weapons based on the isotope-5 technology acquired at Makeb. Their landing force successfully fought past the Jedi defenders, slaying instructor Liam Dentiri and Jedi Council member Master Oric Traless before stealing the data that they came for. The tide of the battle turned with the return of the Republic strike force from Korriban, which secured the Temple grounds and forced out the Sith attackers.
In the wake of the two battles, Sith Lord Lana Beniko and SIS agent Shan learned that their respective superiors, Darth Arkous and Colonel, had orchestrated the attacks on Korriban and Tython in concert. Worse, the data thefts at both locations had pertained to Rakata artifacts—the immensely powerful race which had ruled the galaxy in millennia past. Of necessity, Beniko and Shan entered into an alliance in order to track down the high-ranking traitors.
Shan and Beniko tracked the pair to Manaan, another world that had an ancient association with the Rakatan Infinite Empire. A strike team was dispatched to investigate the pair's doings in a secret laboratory operated by the Selkath geneticist Gorima. After freeing the Wookiee detainee Jakarro, the strike team was eventually able to track down Gorima, who revealed to them the experiment he had been conducting on behalf of Arkous and Darok; the implantation of Rakata technology into living creatures, in order to create a new Infinite Army. The team destroyed the facility, but were unable to apprehend Arkous and Darok, who had already escaped with the research data.
Having determined that Arkous and Darok were followers of the Order of Revan, a fanatical splinter group devoted to the deeds and teachings of the great galactic figure, Beniko and Shan traced the pair's operation to Rakata Prime. Centuries earlier, Rakata Prime had been the site of the final battle of the Jedi Civil War, and as a result, a vast amount of Rakata technology was readily available in the form of debris from the original Star Forge.
On the planet, the strike force discovered that Arkous and Darok had indeed been making use of Gorima's research, having created a small army of Rakata technology-infused soldiers. This new Infinite Army, intended as a powerful fighting force for the Revanite movement—now commanded by Revan himself—proved a significant obstacle in the strike team's path to chase down the pair of traitors.
Eventually, the team was able to pursue the traitors to the summit of the Temple of the Ancients, where the factions engaged in a fierce battle. The strike team emerged triumphant, having slain both Colonel Darok and Darth Arkous, when a fleet of starships of both Republic and Imperial design appeared in the skies above. A massive holo-projection of Revan addressed the strike team, informing them that the loss of Arkous and Darok was merely a setback, and that he did not truly need the Infinite Army they had been working toward. Closing the transmission, Revan's fleet began to bombard the planet below, destroying the both the Temple and the remnants of the new Infinite Army.
In the aftermath of the disaster on Rakata Prime, operatives of the joint strike force found their leadership scattered and in disgrace. Lana Beniko found herself with an Imperial bounty for her arrest for her role in the death of Darth Arkous, a member of the Dark Council; while Shan learned that his official status as an SIS agent had become "disavowed rogue agent, apprehend on sight."
Regardless, the pair agreed that the Revanite threat continued to pose a significant danger to both sides, and chose to go undercover to continue investigating the Revanite movement.
Intrigue on Rishi
Some time later, allies of the erstwhile anti-Revanite coalition discovered that coordinates to Rishi had been entered into their starships' navicomps, and for various reasons, set off for the distant world.
Shortly after arrival on the lawless planet, the agents learned that the navigation data had been entered by Beniko and Shan, who had followed the trail of their investigation to Rishi. Though they did not yet know the reason, they had learned that the Revanites had engaged the local Nova Blade pirate group to harry interstellar traffic in the region, which had the curious effect of shifting galactic traffic patterns in the area.
With few options available, the group decided to seek the assistance of the local clan of Mandalorians, who had their own grievances with the upstart Revanites on planet. Though she forced the Imperial and Republic operatives into completing a series of challenges in exchange for information, the enigmatic Mandalorian leader "Torch"—in truth, a retired Shae Vizla—ultimately relented. Vizla revealed to the heroes that the Revanites had been quietly amassing a fleet of warships on Rishi's planet surface.
In the meantime, Theron Shan had been captured by Revanite forces while infiltrating and investigating one of their facilities. A short while later, anti-Revanite forces were able to rescue Shan, who had learned from Revan himself that the goal of the cult's machinations was to draw fleets from both the Republic and the Empire at once. With the bulk of both fleets present, scores of Revanite saboteurs posted on every ship, and a jamming signal preventing fleet communications, Revan hoped to cripple both sides. To his mind, this was 'clearing the board' so that he would be able to challenge the Sith Emperor without interference.
The Revanite plot was very nearly a success; the Republic and Imperial fleets arrived in orbit over Rishi, and, finding their communications signals jammed, began battling their unexpected enemies. Meanwhile on the surface, Shan had acquired files containing the names of the fleet saboteurs, but had not yet been able to slice into the files to obtain that information.
The strike force quickly set out to destroy the signal jammer while Shan continued working on breaking into the files, in the hope that he would be successful by the time that communications once again became possible. Both Shan and the strike force emerged successful, halting the brief but bloody battle in orbit and convincing the leaders of both fleets to meet on the planet surface.
The Imperial fleet's commander, Darth Marr, agreed to meet with the anti-Revanite group on the surface; as did the Republic fleet's leader, Theron Shan's estranged mother and Grand Master of the Jedi Order, Satele Shan.
At the monumental summit, the warring leaders were made to understand that the Revanite threat had nearly destroyed them all through deception. Worse still, Darth Marr revealed that Revan's mission was not a mere flight of fancy—that the former Sith Emperor, Vitiate, was still alive in an incorporeal form.
While in captivity, Theron Shan learned that Revan's endgame was to restore Vitiate's incorporeal form to a physical body, in order to slay the ancient evil forever. Similarly, the former Sith Emperor planned to be restored to a body in order that he could continue toward his original goal of draining all life in the galaxy.
The Republic and Jedi found themselves facing the possibility of a returned Sith Emperor, as well as a deranged rogue Jedi threatening all in the galaxy. The Empire and Sith were faced with the return of an Emperor whose goal was their own destruction. Faced with these circumstances, the two groups pledged to work together and pursue Revan and his followers to a final showdown on the distant moon Yavin 4.
Rebirth of the Sith Emperor
Not long later, the combined Republic/Imperial task force established a base camp on the jungle moon. A command center was established in the vicinity of the Revanites at which Satele Shan, Darth Marr, Theron Shan, and Lana Beniko could coordinate their forces against Revan and his followers.
The alliance was uneasy. Scouts from both sides distrusted the other to a degree which made establishing a camp perimeter difficult. This mutual distrust continued outside the camp and into the field when, upon detecting an Imperial Guard signal, Imperial forces set out alone to investigate. Mistrustful of their temporary allies, the Republic forces sent out a squad of their own to ensure that Marr's forces were not hiding anything.
The groups encountered one another in the field, but did not come to violence for it. Rather, they were successful in capturing the Imperial Guard Commandant Iven and returning him to the alliance camp for interrogation. Iven revealed that a device capable of mass ritual sacrifice was contained within the temple that the Revanites were using as a base of operations—precisely the kind of device necessary for jump-starting Vitiate's return to corporeal form.
Despite the impending danger and the dark side energies of the moon, both Satele Shan and Darth Marr continued to feel a vastly powerful light-side presence in the Force, which they were both at a loss to explain.
While in the field on a mission to destroy the ritual device, alliance forces made a startling contact: the Force ghost of a supremely serene Revan. This Revan revealed that the events on the Foundry had fractured his psyche into light and dark halves; that his light spirit was ready to move on from the tangible world, leaving only darkness and anger in his physical body—the dark Revan responsible for the situation on Yavin.
Revelation in-hand, the strike team destroyed the weapon and hurried back to base to organize a final assault on the dangerous rogue element that was the dark Revan.
The alliance forces finally collectively banded together to face down the dark Revan. As they stood victorious over the beaten man, the unexpected occurred: the booming voice of Vitiate, former Sith Emperor, began to speak. After taunting Revan that his private war had only served to feed Vitiate's strength, his spirit burst from the top of the temple, off into the night sky for parts unknown. Vitiate, former Sith Emperor and one of the most powerful Sith in history, was once again at large.
Utterly beaten, the dark Revan merged with his light side spirit. Whole and at peace once more, Revan finally chose to move on, leaving no worldly remains.
With the Revanite crisis resolved and the nature of Vitiate's return still indeterminate, the Republic and Imperial alliance mutually agreed to dissolve their partnership, leaving only token forces behind on Yavin 4 to monitor for any further disturbances.
Invasion of Ziost
Rise of the Eternal Empire
- "People of Zakuul, the unthinkable has happened. Our beloved Emperor, Valkorion is dead--murdered by an Outlander who sought to shake the foundations of our great society. The assassin will receive swift and just punishment. And this act of unprovoked aggression will be answered. As your new Emperor, I can promise you this: Zakuul's enemies will face the full power of the Eternal Throne. They will answer for their warmongering ways. And every last of the Core Worlds will burn!"
- ―Arcann addresses the public shortly after Valkorion's assassination.
In the aftermath of the incident on Ziost, a number of Republic and Imperial outposts were destroyed in a series of lightning surprise attacks by an unknown force under the command of twin lightsaber-wielding warriors. Suspecting a connection between the attacks, Darth Marr organized a joint Republic-Imperial task force to investigate the region the warriors had come from: Wild Space. The fleet had the additional goal of searching for Vitiate, whom Marr and his allies suspected might have something to do with the invaders.
The task force had barely begun their investigation when they came under heavy assault by a fleet of unidentified ships hosting legions of the same droids used in the earlier attacks. Darth Marr's flagship was destroyed and Marr and one of his associates were taken captive. They were eventually introduced to one of the twin warriors, Prince Arcann, who brought them to the planet Zakuul, seat of the Eternal Empire. Once there, Marr and his ally immediately recognized Arcann's father, Emperor Valkorion as the Sith Emperor himself. In the ensuing struggle, Darth Marr and Valkorion were killed, and Arcann assumed the throne and froze Marr's associate in carbonite.
Blaming this "Outlander" for Valkorion's death, Arcann declared war on both the Republic and Empire. The war was a disaster on both sides, with the Eternal Fleet swiftly revealing its superiority; Coruscant and Dromund Kaas were fully blockaded within a year. Eventually, both sides sued for peace. Supreme Chancellor Saresh was overruled by the Senate in the matter, while the Ministry of Logistics stepped in for the now-defunct Dark Council and the other departments of the Imperial government. The treaties and and subsequent regime changes on both sides effectively brought the Galactic War grinding to a halt.
- "Nothing but despots left in this galaxy."
- ―Aric Jorgan
The end stages of the conflict left devastating after effects upon the galaxy. The Galactic Republic and Sith Empire, which had ruled the galaxy as the two dominant galactic superpowers, were now under the thumb of the Empire of Zakuul. Not only this, but the conflict also changed the internal workings of both governments.
In the Republic, the power that Chancellor Saresh had gained during wartime amassed her enough control for her to override the Senate in military affairs. Many believe the Republic had 'lost its soul' because of this shift in power; Saresh's regime became viewed as increasingly more and more authoritative in nature. At least on one occasion, a group of soldiers attempted to have her arrested, though one member of the group warned Saresh. The rest were quietly arrested. Though Saresh was eventually removed from office due to term limits, she continued to lead through a puppet chancellor.
Darth Acina, meanwhile, took advantage of the absence or death of the other Dark Councilors and the Empire's Wrath and then declared herself Empress of the Sith.
The Eternal Empire exacted a heavy tribute from both sides, mostly in raw materials. This tribute was slowly destroying the Republic and Imperial economies. To make matters worse, both sides were secretly re-arming themselves in the hope of finally crushing each other, all while refusing to see that Zakuul had become the center of the galaxy.
Realizing that something needed to be done, Lana Beniko organized a raid on Zakuul to free the Outlander, hoping that their freedom would be the catalyst needed to spark the galaxy into action.
- The Old Republic—The Lost Suns 3 (First mentioned; albeit indirectly)
- The Old Republic—The Lost Suns 4 (Indirect mention only)
- The Old Republic—The Lost Suns 5 (Indirect mention only)
- Star Wars: The Old Republic (First appearance)
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Rise of the Hutt Cartel
- The Old Republic: Annihilation
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Galactic Starfighter
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Galactic Strongholds
- (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Shadow of Revan
- (Mentioned only)
- (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Knights of the Fallen Empire
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Knights of the Eternal Throne (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Onslaught (Mentioned only)
- The Art and Making of Star Wars: The Old Republic
- Star Wars: The Old Republic Explorer's Guide
- Star Wars: The Old Republic Encyclopedia
- (First identified as Galactic War)
- (Picture only)
Notes and references