- "The Grysks are not to be underestimated. If they fled from combat today, it is because they chose to do so."
- ―Thrawn, sharing his deductions of the Grysk
The Grysk Hegemony was the hegemonic empire of the Grysk species located inside the Unknown Regions of the galaxy, described as generally nomadic, and were thought of as semi-legendary, even among the peoples of the Unknown Regions. The Grysk had "client species," such as the Agbui, and had the ability to bend the minds of their subject species to their will, making the subjects willing to serve and die for their overlords. As such, it only took a few Grysks to turn whole planets to their will.
Throughout its existence, the Grysk Hegemony fought against the Chiss Ascendancy, as well as other factions and species across the Unknown Regions. At some point, the Hegemony goaded the Nikardun Destiny into starting a series of conquests in a failed attempt to cause a civil war within the Chiss Ascendancy. The plot was to weaken the Ascendancy to facilitate the Hegemony's conquest of the Ascendancy. The plan failed when the Chiss uncovered the Grysks' machinations and took preventive measures.
Establishment and conquest
- "These are some of the artistic pieces that have been created in memorial by survivors of Grysk conquests."
- ―Thrawn, to his Imperial subordinates and colleagues
The Grysk Hegemony was an empire established and controlled by the Grysks. Located in the Unknown Regions of the galaxy, their empire established the Grysk military and fought against the Chiss Ascendancy and other groups and species, waging a series of conquests throughout the region. At times, the Chiss Ascendancy only observed battles, instead of participating in them. In the aftermath, survivors of the conquests created art pieces in memorial, while Grysk warriors degraded the right side of their helmets and armor.
- "I propose two questions. First: How did the Grysks know that cortosis would be an effective defense against blasters and lightsabers?"
"You suggest they were studying us as far back as the Clone Wars?"
"I do, my Lord. After all, the Chiss were watching you. Why not the Grysks? My second question: Once the Grysks knew the value of cortosis against blasters and lightsabers, how did the Separatists gain that knowledge?"
- ―Thrawn, explaining to Darth Vader Grysk activities during the Clone Wars
When the Clone Wars erupted in the wider-known parts of the galaxy between the Galactic Republic and Confederacy of Independent Systems, the Grysk Hegemony began and conducted surveillance on both the galactic government and the secessionists in order to study them, and later deduced that the Galactic Republic was more dangerous to them than the Confederacy.
In order to weaken the Republic, the Hegemony supplied Confederate Head of State Count Dooku with information on cortosis, an element that provided an effective defense against blasters and lightsabers. The Confederacy then established a factory on Mokivj and produced B2-series super battle droids with cortosis armor.
The plot against the Chiss
By 18 BBY, the Grysk agent Jixtus had begun a plot to destroy the Chiss Ascendancy and thus facilitate the Hegemony's conquest of the Unknown Regions. Jixtus employed agents including the Pathfinder navigator Qilori and the telepathic Agbui named Haplif to help conduct his schemes. The Grysk had correctly predicted that the Nikardun Destiny's efforts against the Chiss Ascendancy would fail, and resorted to a less direct and more covert approach based on infiltration and sabotage of the Chiss from within.
The coming invasion
- "The invasion is coming, Lord Vader. But I have now bought the Empire time to prepare."
- ―Thrawn, to Darth Vader
The Grysk embanked on an expedition to the Outer Rim, and started to colonized the moons surrounding the planet of Mokivj; this action led the Galactic Empire to push back the Grysk. In the aftermath of the campaign, Imperial Grand Admiral Thrawn believed the Grysk were planning an imminent invasion of the known galaxy and believed he had tricked the Grysk into possibly attacking the Chiss Ascendancy before the Empire, as Thrawn believed that the Grysk would continue with their bias of attacking the nearest enemy first.
Soon the Grysk would reappear and begun to make advances into Imperial territory, committing multiple criminal acts against it as noted by Chiss Admiral Ar'alani. One such incident was at the wreckage of the Allanar N3 freighter at, where in hiding was an armed Grysk warship laying in wait and stuck at the Empire. The Chiss soon entered the battle to draw away the Grysk warship's laser fire. When the Grysk retreated, the Empire had been able to capture two Grysk prisoners. Meanwhile, upon examining the conjoined Grysk warships, the Imperials detected the presence of several nitrogen cylinders that were left behind to destroy all evidence within the next four hours. However, the Empire was able to detach the Grysk ships from the triad poles before the nitrogen bombs could destroy the cylinders. But this did not prevent another attack by the Grysk, who soon sent two more Grysk warships, upon exiting hyperspace. The Chiss were waiting and turned their ship to face them, demanding the Grysk Hegemony to depart Imperial-control space. The Grysk commander mockingly asks if the Chiss are serving the Empire and said recent Grysk defeats including the loss of two warships were unimportant. As the Grysk starfighters approach, the Chiss crew deploy their plasma spheres, which disable their missiles and cause them to explode. The surviving starfighters return to their warships to inform newer reinforcements about their enemy's defenses.
The Grysk Hegemony was a hegemony, which is an authoritarian government similar to an empire.
The Grysk Hegemony was an enemy of the Chiss Ascendancy, as well as other organizations and species. Despite this, the Hegemony had active alliances with other factions. The Hegemony also allied itself with the Confederacy of Independent Systems by supplying it with critical information in an attempt to weaken the Galactic Republic. When the Republic transitioned into the Galactic Empire, the Hegemony maintained previous hostile relations and was involved in a conflict with them, and also intruded on Imperial territory.
Because the Hegemony had been surveying the Empire, they were aware of Imperial-class Star Destroyers, the capabilities and limits of TIE starfighters, and other Imperial weaponry and technology. As such, they utilized that knowledge in combat against Imperial forces.
Society and culture
- "I've seen what the Grysks did to her, how they probed deeply into her mind and soul, how they found her deepest desires and fears, her most comforting memories and her most cherished hopes. How they twisted and tarnished and bent all of them to their will."
- ―Navigator Vah'nya, to Lieutenant Commander Eli Vanto on the ability of the Grysks
The Grysk were a warrior based society, and while having the characteristics of being a settled and centralized peoples, they were also described as generally nomadic. This was due to the view of no real fixed home, in which said perceptions were born out of their unfamiliar technology and cultural customs.
The Hegemony used population control over the planets it ruled using a unique mental ability, achieved fully through a Grysk strike force learning about the targeted species and twisting their wills to a point where they would follow orders and further Grysks plans, even when the conquers weren't physically present. They succeeded to the point where the "client species," as the Chiss called them, would kill themselves with full knowledge that their masters would never even know if they had or hadn't. The Grysks interrogated a few members of the species to find out what mattered to them and their culture. They then used that against the whole of the species and continued to bend their will until all of their individualism is gone and then twisted them more into servants, meaning it only took several Grysks to rule over entire planets.
- "Grysks are a species living somewhere in the Unknown Regions. Creatures half of myth, whom few have ever seen. It is said that they are nomads, with no fixed home, traveling in spacecraft so numerous they blot out the stars. They are said to be terrifying warriors, overwhelming their opponents by sheer numbers and ferocity."
- ―Thrawn, to Darth Vader
The Grysk Hegemony was located in the Unknown Regions of the galaxy, and although they maintained a homeworld and displayed characteristics of being a settled and centered government, they were described as nomadic with no one fixed home due to perceptions born out of their unfamiliar technology and tactics during war. The location of the Hegemony's area of influence and control brought them into conflict with the Chiss Ascendancy and other groups and species, and during the Imperial Lothal campaign, had already begun intruding on the Galactic Empire's territory.
Behind the scenes
The Grysk Hegemony first appeared, although unnamed, in the 2018 canon novel by Timothy Zahn, Thrawn: Alliances. It was later identified in the sequel to the novel, Thrawn: Treason, also authored by Zahn and released in 2019.
- Thrawn Ascendancy: Chaos Rising (Indirect mention only)
- Thrawn Ascendancy: Chaos Rising audiobook (Indirect mention only)
- Thrawn Ascendancy: Greater Good
- Thrawn Ascendancy: Greater Good audiobook
- Thrawn Ascendancy: Lesser Evil
- Thrawn Ascendancy: Lesser Evil audiobook
- Thrawn: Alliances (First appearance, simultaneous with Thrawn: Alliances audiobook)
- Thrawn: Alliances audiobook
- Thrawn: Treason (First identified as Grysk Hegemony, simultaneous with Thrawn: Treason audiobook)
- Thrawn: Treason audiobook
- Star Wars Helmet Collection 70 (Weapons & Uniforms: Grand Admiral Thrawn) (Indirect mention only)
- "TIE Fighters" – Star Wars Encyclopedia
Notes and references
- Thrawn: Treason
- Thrawn: Alliances
- Thrawn Ascendancy: Greater Good
- The events of Thrawn: Alliances set during the Clone Wars take place after the trial and exoneration of Ahsoka Tano. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates both the end of the the Clone Wars and the trial and exoneration of Ahsoka Tano to 19 BBY. As some of the events in Thrawn Ascendancy: Chaos Rising take place concurrently with Thrawn: Alliances, they must therefore take place around the year 19 BBY. Furthermore, Thrawn Ascendancy: Greater Good establishes that the attack on the Paataatus, which was depicted in Chaos Rising, took place "last year." Therefore, the events of Greater Good must take place around 18 BBY.
- Thrawn Ascendancy: Chaos Rising