Ubese were Near-Humans that were often called on as mercenaries or bounty hunters. Normally, they were a very aggressive people, though loyal to one another. The typical Ubese warrior wore a protective, airtight environment suit or body armor, and was masked. Few non-Ubese had the opportunity to see an unmasked Ubese. The Ubese home world was little known to the rest of the galaxy, as they tended to be very secretive, associating only within their own circles. They were generally known as mysterious, savage nomads.
In fact, the Ubese came from the planet Uba IV, which was a pleasant, though isolated, world. There, they built a sophisticated clan-based society, though their technology lagged behind the rest of the galaxy. When Galactic Republic scouts finally made contact, the Ubese became obsessed with expanding their technical base. Initially, this benefited their society, improving industrial productivity and public health. A population boom resulted in the colonization of the rest of the Uba system, including Uba I, II, III, and V. However, the headlong acquisition of technology led to a breakdown in Ubese society. The Ubese leaders also became more aggressive, seeking conquest as a means to acquire more influence and power.
Circa 3,951 BBY, a group of Ubese warriors were employed by the Quarren crime lord Visquis (the Exchange underboss on Nar Shaddaa) to kill the Jedi Exile. These Ubese had a distinct hatred for Jedi, thus they armed themselves with double bladed cortosis vibroswords, and other items that could resist lightsabers. Like the Ubese warriors of later centuries, they were masked and covered from head to toe in environment suits and body armor. However, they really worked for Visquis' boss, Goto. On his orders, they killed the Quarren.
During the New Sith Wars, the Galactic Republic's officials in their sector discovered that the Ubese had begun manufacturing banned weapons. They realized they had to act. During the Battle of Uba IV, the Republic's preemptive strike set off the large-scale tactical weapons in the Uba system, destroying the colonies on Uba I, II, and V with atomic fire. Uba III's weapons stockpiles also exploded, turning the planet into an asteroid belt. The Ubese were reduced to a refugee population, wandering the wastes of their original homeworld. The sector authorities were ashamed of the consequences of their actions, but not enough to accept responsibility or offer aid. Instead, they engaged in a massive cover-up, placing the Uba system under quarantine and wiping it from official astrogation charts. Left on Uba IV to die, the Ubese became savage nomads, hoarding technology and eking an existence from their toxic, ruined home.
A handful of Ubese were taken off-planet by those who believed the quarantine was unjust. Their descendants on the planet Ubertica slowly managed to trickle out into the rest of the galaxy. Millennia later, the Ubese of the Uba system found their way offworld as well, capitalizing on their talent for violence. When the "true Ubese" of the Uba system eventually discovered their long-lost relatives, they called them "yrak pootczk Ubese", a phrase implying cowardice and impure parentage.
The true Ubese adapted to the harsh conditions on their homeworld over the millennia, becoming especially skilled at surviving extreme conditions. Unfortunately, they were no longer able to breathe properly in standard Type I nitrogen-oxygen atmospheres, requiring breath masks or full environmental suits to operate at full capacity. These breath masks usually included voice modulators which raised their voices from their natural raspy whispers. Yrak pootczk Ubese also adapted to the low oxygen levels on their slightly less harsh homeworld. This allowed them increased stamina in Type I atmospheres.
The Ubese of Ubertica eventually became accepted as part of the Galactic Republic, and later the Galactic Empire. This angered the "True" Ubese who found their way offworld, who saw their long-lost cousins as living in comfort and usurping their rightful place in the Galaxy. This conflict soon became a bloodfeud. Savax Clan-Vorsazg, an Ubese leader on Uba IV who titled himself as War-Master of the Southern Wastes, led a coalition of several clans to attack Ubertica shortly before 3 ABY. He put together a flotilla of capital ships, possibly supplied by the Hutts, and leveled several of Ubertica's cities in the Battle of Ubertica before Imperial forces utterly destroyed his fleet.
At some point prior to the end of the Galactic Civil War, some Ubese colonists fell victim to a lethal virus known as the Intestinal Revenge of Bars Barka. In his Galactic Phrase Book and Travel Guide, Ebenn Q3 Baobab tells of this illness, which caused fatal weight loss in those exposed to it. Having served as a Neimoidian doctor at one point in his career, Baobab believed that the epidemic had originated with the Neimoidian species; only speculation exists as to whether this was a deliberate, trade-related attack or an accidental outbreak.
The Ubese bounty hunter Boushh became one of the most famous Ubese in Galactic history, though his posthumous fame was not won for his own deeds. Instead, it was because Leia Organa posed as Boushh to infiltrate the palace of Jabba the Hutt.
Behind the scenes
Conflicting sources lead to a confusing chronology. The destruction of Uba III is placed by RPG sources and The New Essential Chronology c. 2,000 BBY, but Ubese mercenaries wearing environmental suits are already portrayed seeking revenge on the Jedi as early as 3,951 BBY in Knights of the Old Republic II.
- Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords
- Jedi Quest comic (Siri Tachi in "Zora" disguise)
- Republic Commando: Hard Contact
- Republic Commando: Triple Zero (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars Republic: Into the Unknown
- Evasive Action: Prey
- Junkheap Hero
- Rebel Dawn
- Star Wars Rebellion: My Brother, My Enemy
- Star Wars Rebellion 6: The Ahakista Gambit, Part 1
- Shadows of the Empire (novel) (Mentioned only)
- Sacrifice (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire toy line
- Galaxy Guide 10: Bounty Hunters (Picture only)
- The Far Orbit Project (Picture only)
- Shadows of the Empire Sourcebook (First described)
- Alien Encounters
- Alien Anthology
- Ultimate Alien Anthology
- Star Wars: The Action Figure Archive
- The New Essential Chronology
- Galactic Phrase Book and Travel Guide
- Underworld: A Galaxy of Scum and Villainy
- Scum and Villainy