"Yes, Anakin, I know. There are only women and children."
- ―Skywalker and Kenobi, upon arrival in Rokrul
Rokrul was a village on the planet Nelvaan in the Outer Rim Territories' Koobi system. It was built within an indention on the side of a cliff and was populated by the local Nelvaanians. During the Clone Wars, the Techno Union captured all the adult males from the village and began experiments on them in hopes of creating a super-Nelvaanian army. Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi and Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker landed on the planet and came in contact with the remaining villagers, who informed the two of their plight. Skywalker was then revealed to be the answer to a prophecy stating that the Holt Kazed, or "Ghost Hand," would free the captive men due to his prosthetic hand. Skywalker located and destroyed the Techno Union base, freeing all the Nelvaanian males who survived the battle. Skywalker returned to the village with the men and reunited them with their families.
Rokrul was a small village on the Outer Rim planet Nelvaan, in the Koobi system. The village's buildings were carved out of the rock within an indention on the side of a cliff. The structures were mostly giant, hollowed-out stalagmites growing from the floor, of which there were at least fifteen. The village was populated by at least eighty-five to 100 Nelvaanians. These Nelvaanians belonged to several tribes, and the village was a result of a loose affiliation among the tribes created for protection and assistance.
The culture of the village necessitated that the strong men be warriors and scouts, responsible for hunting and protection, while the women stay in the village and do the building, gathering, and—most important of all—raising of the children, as motherhood was sacred in Nelvaanian tradition. The villagers regarded their homeworld as the "Great Mother," and whenever something tragic happened in nature, they felt as if the Great Mother had been hurt. The villagers also believed in a prophecy that stated the Holt Kazed, or "Ghost Hand," would come to save the Nelvaanians from a crisis sometime in the future. Children were considered precious treasures, regardless of gender, and the elders were paid great respect. The chief of a tribe was often one of the tribe's eldest members who assumed the position after a long, productive life. He was assisted in his ruling by his bond-mate and was advised by the shaman of the tribe. As all members of a tribe shared communal duties, every member participating in the rituals for their gender, there was no special test that an elder had to pass in order to become to chief. Rather, chiefs were selected by the "Great Mother" due to a showing of respect and deference on the elder's part. The decision was not questioned by any of the villagers.
Village clothing was different for males, females, and children. Women wore long brown, gray, and red gowns, while the men wore pants and loin cloths with no top. Children wore robe-like garments that were often brown in color. During celebrations, the villagers also wore giant masks and gauntlets while dancing around a bonfire. These fires were occasionally used to speak to the "Spirit of the Fire," a spiritual figure in Nelvaanian tradition.
- "You've done a great thing for these people. Well done, Anakin."
- ―Kenobi, to Skywalker
Sometime prior to 19 BBY, the villagers of Rokrul discovered that an elixir used to repel the vicious horax beasts in the area could be made using the tail scales from one of the creatures. One scale could be used to make a perimeter around the village that would last for an entire year. It eventually became a rite of passage for young Nelvaanian boys to venture out at the start of the year and bring back a scale from the tail of a horax, earning them a place among the male warrior ranks if successful.
During the Clone Wars, a galaxy-spanning conflict between the Galactic Republic and the Confederacy of Independent Systems, the Confederate-allied Techno Union created a laboratory on Nelvaan. The Techno Union base functioned off a siphon generator that drained thermal energy from the surrounding area, plunging the nearby village of Rokrul into an endless winter. Though the village's shaman, Orvos, had predicted a coming ice age, the intensity and abruptness of the cold took the village by surprise. The villagers, not knowing what caused the winter, believed that the "Great Mother" was ill and that she had to be healed in order for the warm weather to return. To discover what caused the Great Mother's illness, the village sent out its male scouts and warriors. All of the males, including a warrior named Harvos, were captured by the Techno Union and mutated into cyborgs for the war effort.
Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi and Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker landed on the planet and were taken to the village after interfering with the initiation process of a young Nelvaanian boy, the son of Chieftain Tuzes-Adaz. Upon the Jedi's arrival at the village, Tuzes-Adaz told Kenobi and Skywalker of the legendary Holt Kazed, or "Ghost Hand," and why all the males of the community had vanished. Orvos, the local shaman, covered Skywalker's body with bruise-leech crawlers during a ritualistic practice. Afterwards, Kenobi stated that this would be Skywalker's final Jedi Trial, the Trial of Spirit, and the villagers sent Skywalker to rescue the Nelvaanian males. After Skywalker infiltrated and successfully destroyed the Techno Union base, the mutated males were welcomed back into Rokrul village, and the females and children learned to accept them once again.
Behind the scenes
Rokrul first appeared in the twenty-third chapter of the 2003 animated series Star Wars: Clone Wars, which aired on March 23, 2005. The village was first named in the StarWars.com Databank entry for Nelvaan. Rokrul's name is similar in pronunciation to the title of Rock & Rule, an animated film by Canadian animation studio Nelvana. The film was an influence on the character design of the Nelvaanians. Influences on the culture of the village included The Star Wars Holiday Special, the fantasy film The Dark Crystal, and Native American mythos.
- The New Essential Chronology (Indirect mention only)
- The New Essential Guide to Alien Species (Indirect mention only)
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- (First identified as Rokrul)
Notes and references
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. III, p. 269 ("Tuzes-Adaz")
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. II, p. 426 ("Orvos")
- Star Wars: Clone Wars – "Chapter 23"
- Star Wars: Clone Wars – "Chapter 25"
- In "Clone Wars Chapter 25," a head count in the scene depicting the men reuniting with their wives and children numbers somewhere between eighty-five and 100 villagers.
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. II, p. 224 ("Koobi system")
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. III, p. 107 ("Rokrul")
- The New Essential Guide to Alien Species
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. II, p. 24 ("Harvos")
- Star Wars: Clone Wars Volume Two commentary