For other uses, see Nihil (disambiguation).
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Warning! This page contains MAJOR spoilers from Star Wars: The High Republic. Caution is advised.

"At one point, this group wreaked great havoc across a wide swath of the galaxy. They were agents of chaos."
―Wilhuff Tarkin, on the Nihil[src]

The Nihil were a group of anarchistic marauders who were active during the High Republic Era. Based in the Outer Rim Territories, the Nihil caused havoc throughout the galaxy and were responsible for various incidents, such as an attack on Trymant IV and the torching of the planet Nelgenam. The Nihil were obsolete by the time of the Galactic Empire, though rhetoric and imagery associated with the marauders survived, as did their technology, such as the design of the path engine.

Description[edit | edit source]

"This man Ro is utilizing rhetoric and imagery associated with an obsolete criminal organization known as the Nihil."
―Wilhuff Tarkin[src]

The Nihil were a criminal organization[4] of anarchistic marauders[1] based in the Outer Rim Territories. The Nihil operated by a code of taking what they wanted and killing those that stood in their way. Utilizing bizarre and intimidating tactics that included chemical weapons and poison, the Nihil could seemingly appear anywhere at will. The marauders had a power structure organized into three main divisions, referred to as Tempests, each of which had a captain that wielded sole control. The Eye of the Nihil was an important post within the greater Nihil organization, though the holder of the rank did not issue orders, a task undertaken by the Tempest Runners.[2] The Nihil were associated with rhetoric and imagery that outlived the organization's prominence.[4]

Members of the Nihil, who were individuals of numerous species, wore heavy masks and helmets that often featured tubing, and were equipped with various weapons and pieces of armor.[5] Nihil pirates Gwishi and Klinith both utilized blasters, while Klinith also carried knives.[6] The Nihil were responsible for the design of the path engine, a device that could supposedly provide an incredibly fast method of lightspeed travel.[7]

History[edit | edit source]

"The library was a depository of stories from across the galaxy, although it was thought destroyed by Nihil raiders centuries ago."

The marauder group known as the Nihil were active during the High Republic Era,[1] a time period approximately between 300 BBY and 100 BBY.[8] By that time, Marchion Ro held the position of Eye of the Nihil, having inherited it from his father.[2] Kassav was an individual that held an esteemed position in the organization.[6] During the time of the High Republic, the Nihil wreaked havoc across the galaxy and acted as agents of chaos,[4] working against the Galactic Republic.[6] The Nihil were responsible for an attack on Trymant IV, leaving a city in flames. A group of Jedi Padawans of the Jedi Order subsequently raced to provide aid to Trymant IV's citizens.[9]

Wishing to drive the Republic from the remote area near the edge of the Dalnan sector, the Nihil sent the pirates Gwishi and Klinith to sabotage the luxury liner Steady Wing as it departed the remote outpost of Port Haileap with an important Galactic Republic individual aboard. Arriving at Port Haileap on a stolen cargo hauler, the two impersonated mechanics, intending to incapacitate the real mechanics with ovax gas and damage the Steady Wing's escape pods to leave no survivors.[6] A number of Nihil raiders torched the paradise planet Nelgenam, causing the world to become a desolate wasteland and its famed library to fall into ruin.[10]

By the year 0 BBY,[3] the Nihil had become obsolete. During the time of the Galactic Empire, the warlord Burnium Ro utilized rhetoric and imagery associated with the organization. As such, Grand Moff Wilhuff Tarkin of the Empire sent his protégé, Lieutenant Commander Ellian Zahra, to destroy Ro and his operation.[4] Around 3 ABY,[11] Beol De'Rruyet of De'Rruyet Industries claimed to possess a Nihil path engine and have the ability to replicate it, which would subsequently unlock the ancient method of lightspeed travel. As the unveiling of such technology would have a significant effect on the galactic economy, Domina Tagge of the Tagge family intended to stop De'Rruyet, recruiting the rogue archaeologist Doctor Chelli Aphra to ascertain whether De'Rruyet's claims were true.[7]

Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]

"Our main villain are the group called the Nihil. We kind of like to refer to them as space Vikings."
"Their motto is 'You can't take it with you. But we can take it from you.'"
Jennifer Heddle and Michael Siglain describing the Nihil in the announcement trailer for Star Wars: The High Republic[src]

The Nihil were created for the upcoming Star Wars: The High Republic publishing project. The group was devised as a possible answer to the question of what would scare the Jedi, which was posed by High Republic writer Cavan Scott during an initial meeting.[1] The Nihil first received a mention in the comic story "The Lost Stories, Part 1," written by Scott and published in Star Wars Adventures 30 by IDW Publishing[10] on January 29, 2020.[12] During the official announcement panel for Star Wars: The High Republic, the Nihil were revealed to be connected to the project, and concept art for members of the group was shown.[1] In the project's announcement trailer, the Nihil were described as "space Vikings."[13]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

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Sources[edit | edit source]

Notes and references[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 5 Things We Learned About Star Wars: The High Republic on (backup link)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Inside Star Wars: The High Republic: Meet the Villains on (backup link)
  3. 3.0 3.1 The flashbacks of Star Wars 7 in which the Nihil are mentioned as being obsolete take place prior to the Battle of Yavin, which Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates to 0 BBY.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Star Wars 7
  5. Lucasfilm to Launch Star Wars: The High Republic Publishing Campaign in 2020 on (backup link)
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Spry, Jeff (2020-10-20). Space pirates cause mayhem in exclusive excerpt from 'Star Wars: The High Republic: A Test of Courage'. Space. Archived from the original on October 20, 2020. Retrieved on October 20, 2020.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Doctor Aphra 6
  8. The Star Wars Book places the time of the High Republic between approximately 300 and 100 years before the events of Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope. As Star Wars: Galactic Atlas states that A New Hope begins in 0 BBY, the High Republic Era must have occurred between approximately 300 BBY and 100 BBY.
  9. IDW.png Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures #1 on IDW Publishing's official website (backup link)
  10. 10.0 10.1 IDWStarWarsAdventuresLogoSmaller.png "The Lost Stories, Part 1"—Star Wars Adventures 30
  11. The events of Doctor Aphra 1 are set several weeks after the Battle of Hoth, which Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates to 3 ABY. As the events of Doctor Aphra 6 take place after Doctor Aphra 1, its events, including the appearance of the Nihil path engine, must take place around that year.
  12. Amazon favicon.png Star Wars Adventures #30 on (backup link)
  13. SWYTlogo.png Star Wars: The High Republic | Announcement Trailer on the official Star Wars YouTube channel (backup link)
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