Lightwhips were a heavily modified lightsaber variant with multiple plasma blades in flexible containment shields. Due to the blades' flexibility, they required more care of use than a regular lightsaber, and had less cutting power. With a history dating back to the Sith Wars, lightwhips were particularly associated with the Nightsisters of Dathomir, although Jedi had been known to use them as well since they were effective against the Forbidden Forms of the Sith. High Republic Era Jedi Knight Vernestra Rwoh was able to modify her lightsaber to have an additional whip mode after learning the design in a Force vision.
Lightwhips were a heavily modified lightsaber variant. Unlike lightsabers, lightwhips' internal workings permitted the containment field of their plasma blades to be flexible, allowing dozens of small emitters to create thin and flexible blades which could reach several meters in length. It was possible to modify a standard lightsaber to have a lightwhip mode, with a control to switch the blade from sword to whip and back again. Due to their thinness, lightwhip blades were weaker than that of a typical lightsaber, with more limited cutting capacities. However, whips could be used to capture or entangle opponents. The flexible nature of the tendrils meant that lightwhip users had to take more care during use than when wielding a lightsaber, as the wielder had to pay attention to where the tendrils were going so that they did not lose a limb. Electro-whips, a similar-looking but non-lethal weapon with a retractable, electrified cable, were sometimes called by the same name.
Lightwhips were sometimes used by the Jedi Order during the Sith Wars, with the Jedi Cervil the Uncanny leaving behind testimonies about whips being effective against the Forbidden Forms used by some Sith Lords. By the High Republic Era, lightwhips were uncommon among the Jedi, but were known to be used by the Nightsisters, a clan of dark side-using witches from Dathomir.
Recently-promoted Jedi Knight Vernestra Rwoh, while stationed at Port Haileap during that time, had a Force vision which showed her how to modify her lightsaber to give it an additional lightwhip mode, activated by twisting the first ring on the hilt. Uncertain of the reception the modification would get, she kept it secret for several weeks, practicing with the whip in private and not telling either Jedi Master Douglas Sunvale, her superior at Port Haileap, or her former Master Stellan Gios about the change to her weapon. Rwoh eventually reluctantly revealed the whip to Padawan Imri Cantaros after the two of them, along with Avon Starros, Honesty Weft, and the droids J-6 and SD-7, became stranded on the jungle moon Wevo after an attack on the cruiser Steady Wing, as the whip mode would allow her to clear brush faster so the group could take shelter from acid rain.
Rwoh and Cantaros later participated in a skirmish against the pirates responsible for the Steady Wing's destruction, who were also stranded on the moon. Cantaros and Weft had been captured by the duo, Nihil Strikes Gwishi and Klinith Da, after an ill-thought-out attempt to engage the pirates spurred on by both boys' feelings of grief and anger regarding the deaths of Cantaros' Master and Weft's father in the bombing. Rwoh, Starros and J-6 set out to rescue them, and Rwoh engaged the pirates with her lightsaber in its normal mode. However, Cantaros was in danger of falling to the dark side, and Rwoh threw him into the jungle with the Force after he attempted to Force choke Da to death. The Mirialan Jedi then engaged Cantaros in a lightsaber duel to subdue him and prevent him from falling. During the duel, Rwoh got the better of Cantaros by switching her lightsaber to whip mode mid-fight, slashing the ground in front of him and destroying his lightsaber, which brought the duel to an end.
Behind the scenes
- The High Republic: A Test of Courage (First appearance, simultaneous with The High Republic: A Test of Courage audiobook)
- The High Republic: A Test of Courage audiobook
- The High Republic 4
- The High Republic 5
- The High Republic: Race to Crashpoint Tower
- The High Republic: Race to Crashpoint Tower audiobook
- The High Republic: Out of the Shadows
- The High Republic: Out of the Shadows audiobook