- "I know the Jedi from old. They could never share my vision. Two days ago the Jedi Temple on Coruscant fell. Today, at their academy on Ossus, the last of the Jedi will die."
- ―Darth Krayt
The Massacre at Ossus, also known as the Fall of Ossus, Massacre on Ossus, Attack on Ossus, Assault on Ossus or the Ossus massacre, was a conflict that occurred in 130 ABY, two days after the fall of Coruscant. With the capture of that galactic capital world, the Galactic Federation of Free Alliances was forced to surrender to the forces of the Fel Empire. With this action, it appeared that once again the galaxy was under the control of a single organized government. Nonetheless, Darth Krayt influenced events, staging a coup d'etat in order to take over the Empire and institute himself as Emperor of the galaxy. Krayt believed that in order for his coup to be successful, he should first eliminate any potential threats to his takeover—thus, he reasoned, the New Jedi Order had to be destroyed. Once he became Emperor the Jedi would be the only opposition he would have to face, since the Galactic Federation of Free Alliances had already been deposed.
The attack on Ossus was originally supposed to be a simple diplomatic meeting between the Jedi and the Empire in order to fix ties and maybe even form an alliance. However, Darth Krayt pulled his strings and had the Imperial forces attack the Jedi, so that it turned into a massacre marking the beginning of the Third Jedi Purge. Unfortunately for Darth Krayt's plan, about half of the order remained at large, as they had left for other planets after the fall of Coruscant, and he had not waited for all of them to gather at Ossus.
The Massacre at Ossus witnessed the deaths of countless Jedi at the hands of the Sith attackers. Darth Krayt's raid was successful, and among those killed was Jedi Grand Master Kol Skywalker, as he made a defiant last stand against the superior numbers of the Sith forces in order to save younglings. Master Wolf Sazen assisted Kol and was struck down by Darth Nihl, yet was able to survive thanks to Kol's son. Although many were killed, several Padawans and younglings were able to escape in J-1 shuttles. Many Sith and Stormtroopers were also killed during the Massacre. Many Yuuzhan Vong warriors and shapers, there because of their terraforming activities, were also executed.
- "Once, the Empire destroyed the Jedi Order. I will not permit it to do so again. The Jedi will withdraw from the Temple on Coruscant to their academy on Ossus. It is my explicit order that they be allowed to do so."
- ―Roan Fel
Much of the Galactic Alliance surrendered to the Fel Empire at the end of the Sith–Imperial War, to be absorbed into the latter galactic government, but the reigning Emperor, Roan Fel, knew that while the Alliance had surrendered, the Jedi would stay true to the will of the Force and would swear allegiance to no man. The Empire had strengthened themselves with the Sith's help and Fel knew that the Jedi would, under no circumstances, ally themselves with an Empire that had sided with the users of the dark side of the Force. Still, he appreciated their value and worth, and had no desire to follow the example of previous Imperial rulers, well aware that the Empire had destroyed the Jedi Order before and not wanting it to do so again.
As was expected, the New Jedi Order rejected the Emperor's call for surrender and half of them withdrew to the Jedi Academy at Ossus, while the remainder of the Order scattered across the galaxy. Certain Jedi did join the Empire, becoming Imperial Knights. Two days after the Alliance fell, an Imperial task force under the command of Moff Rulf Yage was dispatched to Ossus. Fel's order and understanding was that this was to be a diplomatic mission. His hope was to convince the Jedi to ally themselves with the Empire, much as the Imperial Knights had, and under no circumstances, he made clear, were Yage's troops to initiate hostilities.
What Fel did not count on was that the Sith would intervene at such a crucial point for the Empire and the Jedi Order. Their leader, Darth Krayt, had known the Jedi from over a century ago and knew that even if they agreed to work with Fel, they would never accept the direction that Krayt intended to take the galaxy. He intended on taking Fel's Empire for himself. The Jedi would never allow a Sith as Emperor after the damage past Sith rulers had done, so if his vision of order was to be fulfilled, the Jedi had to be eradicated. His agent, Darth Maladi, approached Grand Admiral Morlish Veed with direct instructions from him: Yage's forces were to attack and destroy the Ossus academy alongside forces Krayt would be sending to assist. Lest he be embarrassed later, Veed agreed to countermand Fel's order and make it look like his own idea.
- "I am Kol Skywalker, servant of the living Force! None of you will pass!"
- ―Kol Skywalker
The combined Sith/Imperial attack, commanded by Fist Darth Nihl and Yage respectively, proved devastating to the Jedi Order, as well as the ecosystem of the entire planet. Many Jedi were killed, along with numerous Yuuzhan Vong warriors and shapers, present at the time of the attack because the Galactic Alliance and the New Jedi Order permitted their Shapers to use a desolate portion of Ossus as a test site for terraforming. Kol Skywalker, understanding that the odds against the Jedi were insurmountable, chose to fight by himself to hold back the joint Sith/Imperial force, giving his son Cade Skywalker and several younglings enough time to escape into hyperspace on various J-1 shuttles. Kol was aided by Cade's Master, Wolf Sazen, who dueled Darth Nihl.
Cade Skywalker could not stand by and watch his father die at the hands of the Sith, however. Disregarding his father's orders to flee, Cade left his charges' shuttle and fought by his father's side. Meanwhile, Master Sazen was overpowered by Darth Nihl, who cleaved off Sazen's right arm and used the Force to hurl him back behind Kol. Kol reasoned with Cade and was able to convince him to take Sazen to the ship because of his injuries. Obeying his father, Cade boarded the last Jedi shuttle to leave Ossus.
Meanwhile, Kol stood alone against the much larger numbers of the advancing enemy force. Though he was able to inflict a large number of casualties, he was eventually felled by Darth Nihl. However, Cade, upon sensing his father's death through the Force, took a X-83 TwinTail starfighter docked in the shuttle he was aboard and attempted to make his way back to Ossus. In the ensuing dogfight with a number of enemy Predator-class fighters, Cade's X-wing starfighter was blown to pieces and Cade was apparently killed. However, he managed to escape by sealing his flight suit and jettisoning just as the ship exploded.
Another Jedi apprentice, Ellu Viss, was able to take a book detailing the history of the Force, Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force by Jedi Master Tionne Solusar 90 years before, when he successfully fled the Temple. He resolved to find any other surviving Jedi he could so they could unite and use information therein to try to figure out how to bring down the Sith.
- "Your father is the 'Butcher of Ossus'?!"
"Hero of Ossus!"
"Sell it to someone else! I'm Cade Skywalker! Yeah, those Skywalkers, and I was at Ossus! It was a sneak attack during what was supposed to be a diplomatic meeting!"
"Don't tell me the Jedi were all innocent! They sponsored the Yuuzhan Vong terraforming plan! That plot destroyed worlds, turned innocents into Vongspawn! Yet you Jedi fanatics went to war to defend them and dragged the Galactic Alliance into it with you! The war and what happened afterwards was your fault!"
"You imp moron! That was Sith sabotage! A trick to start a war before the Sith revealed themselves!"
"Galactic Alliance propaganda! Jedi lies! Heard it all before!"
- ―Cade Skywalker and Gunn Yage argue about the raid years later
The Sith suffered their own casualties, as did the Imperial forces, but the attack was not the all-destroying blow Krayt had hoped for. Because they had not waited until all the Jedi had returned to Ossus, more than half of the order was elsewhere during the attack and remained at large. The survivors of the Order would go into hiding throughout the galaxy, with many members taking refuge in a Hidden Jedi Temple on the planet Taivas. Those who did not find themselves there, a large number since the Temple was a secret from most Jedi before the Massacre, were hunted by bounty hunters seeking to give them over to the Sith. Darth Maladi kept a list of all active Jedi and determined what large purse each was worth.
The massacre was also the event that forced the Sith to move openly against Emperor Fel. Fel's anger at having his specific orders disobeyed moved him to assemble the Moff Council in special session to deal with Veed—as well as his lover, Moff Nyna Calixte. Krayt understood that Fel was no longer of use so, before Fel could act, Krayt launched a palace revolution to oust Fel and place himself on the throne, the first Sith Lord to rule the majority of the galaxy since the reign of Darth Caedus almost a century earlier. Calixte, secretly Kol's wife and Cade's mother, was devastated when she learned of the Massacre on Ossus and heard that they both died. She lost her faith in the Empire after it was taken over by the Sith, and she endeavored to stay inside to advance her own purposes.
In the eyes of the public, due to Sith propaganda, the raid was made out to be a just act against Jedi traitors. Because the war began over the sabotaged Ossus Project that killed many and ruined entire worlds, the Jedi were blamed for dragging the Galactic Alliance with them to war against the Empire when they came to the defense of the Yuuzhan Vong terraformers who had used the opportunity to plot the project's "failure." Moff Yage was named the "Hero of Ossus" by the people though he never called himself such, and his detractors took to calling him the "Butcher of Ossus." He sank into a deep depression following that day's events and drank heavily for a week to escape them, ashamed that he'd been used by the Sith in their plot to take over the galaxy, but he resigned himself to the fact that he would not be able to take back what he did. When people who knew the truth of the Sith sabotage spoke out, they were quickly dismissed and written off for believing the propaganda of the defeated Alliance and the lies of the fallen Jedi.
In 137 ABY, Cade Skywalker returned to Ossus and he experienced several visions of his ancestral family members such as Mara Jade Skywalker and Anakin Skywalker brought on by a Death sticks binge. There he met Jedi Master K'Kruhk, who cleansed Cade's body of the death sticks' impurities, as well as his former Master Wolf Sazen and Shado Vao, Kol's Padawan, who had recently returned to Ossus expecting to find him. During a sparring session, Skywalker and Shado discovered a secret floor of the Temple, discovering Vong shaper Nei Rin guarding a lost vault of Jedi artifacts with her assistants.
Skywalker eventually left the Temple for Coruscant after having a vision of Hosk Trey'lis being tortured in the Sith Temple, while the other Jedi and the Vong stayed behind. Since the massacre, Krayt's Empire had conducted periodic searches of the Temple, to catch any stray Jedi that may have returned. Darth Stryfe, a Sith Lord of the One Sith, was dispatched to the world with stormtroopers to conduct one such scan. Some Stormtroopers conducted a search of the surface at Stryfe's order, nearly catching the Jedi, before Sazen clouded their minds and sent them away. Stryfe felt this use of the Force and ordered the search to continue, though it remained fruitless. Stryfe, still feeling the Jedi presence, ordered the destruction of the Temple as a means to eliminate the potential threat. His vessel opened fire, leveling the building. He failed, and the Jedi inside survived. The Jedi at the Hidden Temple would later send a delegation to work with the Galactic Alliance Remnant and the Fel Empire in their war against the Sith because of this action.
Behind the scenes
Though the Massacre itself only appeared in the first and eighth issues of the Legacy comics, it was often used as a flashback point for Cade, signifying the major impact it had on him and the series. In the opening issue, the Massarce was pencilled by Jan Duursema, inked by Dan Parsons and colored by Brad Anderson. The eighth issue was illustrated by Adam DeKraker and colored by Ronda Pattison. It also garnered an appearance in Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force, in which it was not mentioned as "Massacre at Ossus" but is included.
- Legacy (2006) 8 (First identified as Attack on Ossus)
- Legacy (2006) 1 (First appearance)
- Legacy (2006) 2 (Mentioned only) (First identified as Fall of Ossus)
- Legacy (2006) 3 (In flashback(s))
- Legacy (2006) 5 (In flashback(s))
- Legacy (2006) 6 (In flashback(s))
- Legacy (2006) 7 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 9 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 11 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 12 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 15 (Mentioned only) (First identified as Assault on Ossus)
- Legacy (2006) 25 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 28 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 29 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 39 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 40 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 43 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2006) 45 (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2013) 16 (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: Legacy 0 (First mentioned)
- "The Art of War"—Star Wars Insider 89 (Picture only)
- Star Wars: The Ultimate Visual Guide: Special Edition
- Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force
- Star Wars: Legacy 0½
- "Blaster"—Star Wars Insider 101
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Legacy Era Campaign Guide (First identified as Ossus massacre)
- The Essential Atlas
- The Essential Guide to Warfare
- Star Wars: The Ultimate Visual Guide: Updated and Expanded
Notes and references
- Legacy (2006) 8
- Legacy (2006) 1
- Legacy (2006) 12
- Legacy Era Campaign Guide
- Legacy (2006) 39
- Legacy (2006) 11
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. II ("Massacre at Ossus")
- Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force
- Legacy (2006) 25
- Legacy (2006) 40
- Legacy (2006) 45
- Legacy (2006) 16
- Legacy (2006) 17