- "We cannot hide in the depths waiting for the danger to pass. We must be a rising tide. For only with Mon Calamari ships does the Resistance have a chance—and only by resisting can Mon Cala remain free!"
- ―General Leia Organa, to King Ech-Char
Home to two sentient aquatic species, the industrious Mon Calamari and the prideful Quarren, Mon Cala was known for its shipbuilding industry, which produced beautiful and unique starships for various purposes such as pleasure cruises and deep-space exploration. The Mon Calamari ran the Mon Calamari Shipyards company, and the Quarren ran the Free Dac Volunteers Engineering Corps.
Mon Cala would play a vital role in shaping galactic history by its involvement in the Galactic Civil War between the tyrannical Galactic Empire and the Alliance to Restore the Republic, pledging the ships of its mercantile and exodus fleets to the cause of the latter. Mon Calamari vessels would play a key role in many battles and allow the Alliance fleet to meet the Imperial warships on a more even footing.
Mon Cala regrettably paid a steep price for its assistance to the rebellion, however; prompting the remaining population to adopt a policy of isolationism for fear of provoking another atrocity against the planet. Nevertheless, Mon Cala would once again pledge its ships to the cause of freedom in the form of Leia Organa's Resistance, unwittingly bringing the attention of the First Order down on the water world.
The oceans of Mon Cala held an abundance of life, including two influential sentient species; the peaceful Mon Calamari and the more bellicose Quarren species. Both species prefered to build their cities underwater, but there also existed some cities built on the surface of the water. The planet was ruled by a single monarch. Despite their differences, the two peoples had generally shown mutual respect throughout their history.
Coral grew in large colonies on Mon Cala, with their hard skeletons forming coral reefs that acted as shelter and feeding and breeding grounds for various species of fish, crustaceans, and other sea life. The coral tended to thrive in areas bathed in the light of Mon Cala's twin suns, but some hardier species dwelt out of the light deep below the surface. In these deep sea beds of limited light, bioluminescence was a common trait for plants.
High Republic Era
During the Clone Wars, the eighty-second King of Mon Cala, Yos Kolina, was murdered as part of a Separatist plot to stir up unrest among the people. While his young son, Prince Lee-Char, was supposed to take the mantle, the Quarren, led by Nossor Ri, refused to accept him as their leader due to the prince's young age and inexperience. As tensions grew, Count Dooku sent commander Riff Tamson to ensure that the groups would not succeed in a compromise, while the Galactic Republic sent Anakin Skywalker and Padmé Amidala. When Nossor Ri delivered his ultimatum, the Quarren left Coral City and officially allied with the Separatists, who deployed a large force of AQ-series battle droids to combat the Mon Calamari militia. A civil war began, with the Separatists being led by Tamson against Prince Lee-Char and his general, Gial Ackbar. After several large confrontations, including the deployment of Kit Fisto, clone SCUBA troopers, and even the Gungan Grand Army, Lee-Char's forces were successful in uniting the people of Mon Cala. Lee-Char was crowned the eighty-third King of Mon Cala with support from Nossor Ri.
- "Mon Cala is a valuable world in many ways—its people, technology, and civilization. Why, Emperor Palpatine himself enjoys the Mon Calamari Aquatic Ballet."
- ―Governor Wilhuff Tarkin on Mon Cala's importance
Following the rise of the Galactic Empire, Char's government became influenced by a mysterious Jedi named Ferren Barr, who inspired them to refuse the Empire's harsh terms. The Empire sent Moff Wilhuff Tarkin on the Sovereign to negotiate with King Lee-Char. Tarkin sent Ambassador Telvar to discuss with Lee-Char, and he was unsuccessful. Investigating the possible involvement of a Jedi, Darth Vader and three Inquisitors arrived to find Barr, and Lee-Char notified Barr of this. Telvar's shuttle was sabotaged and destroyed, killing all on board. Tarkin saw this as an act of rebellion and sent forces down.
The Empire began subjugating Mon Cala. The Mon Calamari retaliated by converting their buildings and civilian starships into warships and dispatching them from Mon Cala. Many of these ships became part of the Alliance to Restore the Republic and were used throughout the Galactic Civil War.
During the war, Mon Cala was listed as an Alliance safe world despite the Imperial occupation. It was included in a map of the galaxy with a legend listing the various Alliance safe worlds, starfighter hubs at level five or higher, rebel operations sectors and regional headquarters, and shadow planets with deep-space caches. The map was later incorporated into The Rebel Files.
Mon Cala was one of the worlds Emperor Palpatine intended to target following the completion of the second Death Star, which he planned to use to destroy the rebel stronghold and wipe out the Rebellion through sheer terror. After the destruction of the battle station, Mon Cala was one of many worlds attacked during Operation: Cinder.
New Republic Era
In Luke Skywalker's dream in 34 ABY on Ahch-To, in which he imagined how things were if he hadn't joined the Rebel Alliance and instead stayed on Tatooine and married Camie Marstrap, the Empire used the Death Star to not only destroy Alderaan, but also Mon Cala and Chandrila.
First Order-Resistance war
- "We must hit the hyperdrive now or else this will be the shortest battle in the history of Mon Cala!"
- ―Aftab Ackbar
During the mission to Mon Cala, General Leia Organa with a few of her Resistance members came to Mon Cala in search of allies after their defeat at the Battle of Crait. Chadkol Gee, Nossor Ri's advisor contacted the First Order. King Ech-Char and Nossor Ri detested the actions of Gee, giving the Resistance a handful of Mon Calamari starships with which to escape along with the help of Aftab Ackbar, the son of Admiral Gial Ackbar. Eventually, led by General Armitage Hux, the First Order sent a fleet to Mon Cala to show the galaxy what happened to those who sided against the Order.
Behind the scenes
Mon Cala first appeared in the premier episode in Season Four of Star Wars: The Clone Wars. In Star Wars Legends Mon Cala first appeared in a adventure supplement for Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game in 1990 where it is referred to as "Calamari."
An unfinished story for Star Wars: The Clone Wars featured a return to Mon Cala in which Padmé Amidala and Anakin Skywalker returned to the planet to meet with King Lee-Char. During the story, they would have found out that Quarren leader, Nossor Ri was murdered and senator Tikkes was appointed as a provisional leader. Padmé would take this opportunity to gain Quarren support for the removal of Chancellor Palpatine from office but was unable to do so.
Notes and references
- Ultimate Star Wars
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Water War"
- Star Wars: Build the Millennium Falcon 97 (Guide to the Galaxy: Moons and Planetoids)
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens Beginner Game
- Darth Vader (2017) 13
- Darth Vader (2017) 15
- Star Wars (2015) 46
- Star Wars (2015) 48
- Darth Vader (2017) 17
- Allegiance 2
- Gadgets and Gear
- Allegiance 3
- Sabine My Rebel Sketchbook
- Darth Vader (2017) 14
- Darth Vader (2017) 16
- Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
- Star Wars: Rogue One: The Ultimate Visual Guide
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Gungan Attack"
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Prisoners"
- Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia
- The High Republic: Light of the Jedi
- Star Wars: The Rebel Files
- Moving Target: A Princess Leia Adventure
- "Emperor Palpatine" – Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Star Wars: Squadrons
- Star Wars: The Last Jedi: Expanded Edition
- Allegiance 4
- Death in the Undercity
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – The Lost Missions, Declassified Featurette