- "You don't survive in the Outer Rim by being stupid!"
- ―Hondo Ohnaka
The Outer Rim Territories, also known as the Outer Rim or Outer Systems, was a sparsely populated region of the galaxy located outside the Mid Rim before Wild Space and the Unknown Regions. The largest region in the galaxy, it was home to diverse worlds and rugged, primitive frontier planets.
- "How did you end up here in the Outer Rim?"
- ―Anakin Skywalker
Days of the Old Republic
- "The Republic doesn't exist out here… We must survive on our own."
- ―Shmi Skywalker
With the formation of the Old Republic and the bustling Core planet of Coruscant being homeworld to the pioneering human species, galactic expansion occurred along trailblazing new hyperspace routes emanating outwards from the Core Worlds, with colonists heading towards the Outer Rim in search of opportunities and a better life. Owing to economic and legal restrictions, coupled with political repression, many chose to live beyond the civilizing grasp of the Core. Navigational beacons set up by Republic survey teams such as in the Tertiary Usaita system aided travelers heading towards the galactic periphery.
Eventually, tensions arose between the Republic and its Jedi allies over the warrior culture of of the Outer Rim world of Mandalore, leading to a destructive conflict that ultimately saw the theft of the Darksaber from the Jedi Temple. While the Sith following their birth in the Hundred-Year Darkness eventually collapsed from continual infighting, resulting in Darth Bane enacting the Rule of Two, while he and other Sith Lords were buried in the Valley of the Dark Lords on Moraband.
- "This, from the days when the Separatists brought the war to the Outer Rim in the later years of the Clone Wars."
- ―Norra Wexley, while visiting the droid factory on Akiva.
With the collapse of the Old Republic roughly a thousand years before the Clone Wars, its successor state, the Galactic Republic, remained one of the dominant galactic powers of the millennium, with trade and galactic commerce booming between the Core and Outer Rim Territories. Republic Judicial Forces and the Jedi Order enforced order throughout the galaxy, preventing a major galactic war for centuries.
Several years before the Clone Wars, those in the Outer Rim eventually came to believe themselves victims of economic and social injustices, as Judicials were often withheld in intervening in Outer Rim affairs after many far-flung worlds refused to provide the Core with profitable deals. Harassed by numerous pirates and lacking protection from a federal military, the Outer Rim world of Eriadu formed the Outland Regions Security Force for the protection of the Seswenna sector. Funded by off-world loans and composed of an amalgam of ships, it received weapons from arms merchants who had for centuries been ignoring a Republic ban on the sale of weapons to member worlds. Initially lacking major success, it came to the forefront after Wilhuff Tarkin joined its anti-piracy task force, in which he was able to significantly reduce pirate raids throughout neighboring systems.
With the monolithic Trade Federation slowly encroaching on the Outer Rim and the perceived weakness of Supreme Chancellor Finis Valorum, who was already embroiled in numerous scandals and unable to bring the growing corruption in the Galactic Senate under control, Governor Tarkin of Eriadu turned Valorum from investigating a trade summit in an effort to weaken his authority. Ending in a disaster, the summit hastened the Trade Federation's Invasion of Naboo over the recently proposed the taxation of the Free Trade Zones and disputes over plasma exports.
With increasing dissatisfaction over years of neglect from the Core Worlds, dashing political idealist Count Dooku managed to foment political turmoil on worlds such as Kashyyyk, Sullust and Onderon. He eventually hijacked a HoloNet station in the Raxus system to voice his opinion. This precipitated the Separatist Crisis, which would see thousands of worlds leave the Galactic Republic and join the growing Confederacy of Independent Systems. After the Battle of Geonosis, the deadly three-year Clone Wars engulfed the galaxy and resulted in billions dead on both sides of the conflict. The Republic was forced to raise the Grand Army of the Republic to combat the Separatist threat, with the war finally ending following the Outer Rim Sieges and the death of the Separatist Council on Mustafar. Meanwhile, Chancellor Palpatine transformed the Republic into the First Galactic Empire, wiping away the thousand-year-old democracy—and the Jedi Order—in an instant.
- "The factor that contributed most to the demise of the Republic was not, in fact, the war, but rampant self-interest. Endemic to the political process our ancestors engineered, the insidious pursuit of self-enrichment grew only more pervasive through the long centuries, and in the end left the body politic feckless and corrupt. Consider the self-interest of the Core Worlds, unwavering in their exploitation of the Outer Systems for resources; the Outer Systems themselves, undermined by their permissive disregard of smuggling and slavery; those ambitious members of the Senate who sought only status and opportunity."
- ―Wilhuff Tarkin, regarding the fall of the Galactic Republic and rise of the First Galactic Empire
The budding Galactic Empire saw increasing attempts of control of the Outer Rim. Believing control of the galaxy's outer systems would stabilize and secure the galactic center, Galactic Emperor Palpatine oversaw the continual military buildup of the Imperial Military and ruthlessly quash dissent and remaining Separatist holdouts across the Outer Rim. Worlds such as Jelucan and Lothal saw Imperial occupation and development, often leading to rampant pollution and industrialization to support the Imperial war machine, while men and women would be conscripted to join the Imperial Army and Navy. A 'five-year plan' was implemented for numerous Imperial-occupied worlds under the supervision of Imperial Outer Rim High Command. In the farthest reaches of the Outer Rim, the Empire barely bothered to patrol its territory, and local citizens' militias took it upon themselves to protect friendly convoys.
Never being able to fully control the Outer Rim, the Empire would often utilize its worlds as testing grounds for new biological weapons and as a source of labor, brutally wiping out the Outer Rim world of Lasan of its native species and exploiting the native Twi'lek species of Ryloth by rounding up native villagers for slave labor.
Seeking to embody the spirit of the Tarkin Doctrine, the Empire oversaw the construction of the first Death Star over Geonosis and exterminated the native Geonosian population. Grand Moff Tarkin was tasked with imposing order in the Outer Rim Territories, being promoted to Governor of the Outer Rim. After limiting the HoloNet of various Outer Rim worlds to Imperial use five years after the formation of the New Order, many dissatisfied systems viewed the embargo as the unofficial start of the Imperial conquest of the Outer Systems.
Eventually, a growing rebel network would cause worry to the Ruling Council, and would see the formation of the Alliance to Restore the Republic and its subsequent bases on the worlds of Dantooine and Yavin 4. With the dissolution of the Imperial Senate, Regional Governors were given oversight of their subsequent sectors and systems. Luke Skywalker from Tatooine ultimately destroyed the Empire's planet-killing battle station in the Battle of Yavin after its plans were stolen nineteen years after the Order's political formation.
The Outer Rim Territories would become embroiled in the Galactic Civil War, with the Alliance Fleet dispersed across the region and the Empire fortifying the border of the Mid Rim against the lawlessness of the outlying systems. Due to its distance from the Core, unauthorized holofeeds operated in abundance in the Outer Rim owing in part to the Empire's tentative control of the region.
After the Mid Rim Retreat, the Empire discovered the Rebellion's new base on Hoth, destroying it in the Battle of Hoth and splintering the Rebellion into fragments spread across the Outer Rim. Following Operation Ringbreaker, roughly six months after the Battle of Hoth, Operation Yellow Moon allowed the scattered Rebel Fleet to converge over Sullust to strike on the Empire's new Death Star under construction over Endor. Its destruction in the Battle of Endor saw the fragmentation of Imperial authority, resulting in the gradual retreat of Imperial dominion from the Outer Rim.
- "We must be cautious Inroads to the Outer Rim are slow."
- ―Mon Mothma
The New Republic admitted Akiva as the first Outer Rim world to formally join the Republic in the months after Endor. By 5 ABY, the Empire had lost control of much of the Outer Rim with the exception of Zhadalene, Korrus, and Belladoon. Under the orders of Fleet Admiral Gallius Rax, the Empire nationalized the Imperial weapons and vehicular factories there for the war effort. In coordination with Imperial fleets hidden in the Vulpinus Nebula, the Almagest, the Recluse's Nebula, the Queluhan Nebula, the Ro-Loo Triangle, and the Inamorata, Rax planned to use the three Outer Rim holdouts as a cord to strangle the New Republic. Shortly before the Battle of Jakku, Princess Leia Organa reported that Tatooine and Horuz were in the thrall of some Imperial remnant, criminal syndicates or gangsters. The Red Key Raiders tried to take over Tatooine but were opposed by Cobb Vanth, the elusive Mayor and Sheriff of Freetown.
In 28 ABY, New Republic member worlds included Arkanis and Daxam IV, which were aligned with the Centrist faction in the Galactic Senate on Hosnian Prime. The Outer Rim planet Ryloth chose not to join the new galactic government. The planet Pamarthe was known for producing pilots.
The New Republic took steps to control organized crime by introducing new financial regulations and patrolling the major shipping lines. However, organized crime later returned to the Gaulus sector and adversely affected the economy of Ryloth due to the indecisiveness of the Galactic Senate. One major crime syndicate was the Nikto crime lord Rinnrivin Di's cartel, which was based on Bastatha. Rinnrivin's smuggling activities took a toll on Ryloth's economy and precipitated a New Republic senatorial investigation led by Organa and Ransolm Casterfo. In truth, Rinnrivin's cartel was a criminal front organization set up by several Centrist senators including Lady Carise Sindian to bankroll the Amaxine warriors and the First Order's fleet.
The planet Daxam IV was the site of an Amaxine base which housed a thousand Amaxine warriors. The Amaxines were a militia that was led by former Imperial officers like Arliz Hadrassian, who admired the Old Empire and sought to overthrow the New Republic. The organization was largely destroyed when an explosion destroyed their main base on the Expansion Region world of Sibensko.
Rise of the First Order
Shortly before the attack on Tuanul, the First Order operated a mining operation in Pressy's Tumble, an artificial asteroid field in the Pressylla system. The former stormtrooper Finn and his commanding officer Captain Phasma took part in suppressing a strike at Pressy's Tumble.
The planet D'Qar in the Ileenium system hosted the Resistance's base of operations. Following the Battle of Takodana, the First Order tried to destroy D'Qar with its Starkiller Base superweapon. However, the Resistance destroyed Starkiller Base before it could fire its superlaser.
Before the Resistance could complete their evacuation of D'Qar, they were attacked by the First Order Navy. Despite destroying a Mandator IV-class Siege Dreadnought, the Resistance lost several bombers and starfighters. Fleeing through hyperspace, they were pursued by the First Order Navy including Supreme Leader Snoke's flagship Supremacy, which was equipped with a hyperspace tracker. The Resistance operatives Finn and Rose Tico traveled to the planet Cantonica to recruit the Master Codebreaker to disable the First Order's hyperspace tracker. However, their mission went awry, and they were only able to recruit the criminal slicer DJ.
After abandoning the Resistance flagship Raddus, the Resistance evacuated in U-55 orbital loadlifters to the planet Crait. However, the Resistance were betrayed by DJ, who revealed the Resistance's plans to the First Order. Despite sustaining heavy casualties, five of the Resistance loadlifters managed to regroup on Crait due to Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo ramming the Supremacy with the Raddus. After killing Snoke, Kylo Ren claimed the mantle of Supreme Leader and led an assault against the Resistance on Crait. However, the Resistance escaped offworld due to Luke Skywalker's final stand with Ren.
- "The Outer Rim is a lawless place. It is a haven for smugglers, cartels, syndicates, and all kinds of scum and villainy."
- ―Jennica Pierce
Due to its distance from the Core Worlds, the Outer Rim lacked a stable, central authority to maintain order across the vast expanses of space in the region throughout its history. As a result, numerous crime families such as the Hutt Clan and Pyke Syndicate[source?] operated with impunity in the region, with slavery being common despite a Republic ban on its practice.
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