- "For my ally is the Force, and a powerful ally it is. Life creates it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us and binds us. Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter. You must feel the Force around you; here, between you, me, the tree, the rock, everywhere, yes. Even between the land and the ship."
- ―Yoda, to Luke Skywalker
Yoda, a Force-sensitive male being belonging to a mysterious species, was a legendary Jedi Master who witnessed the rise and fall of the Galactic Republic, followed by the rise of the Galactic Empire. Small in stature but revered for his wisdom and power, Yoda trained generations of Jedi, ultimately serving as the Grand Master of the Jedi Order. Having lived through nine centuries of galactic history, he played integral roles in the Clone Wars, the rebirth of the Jedi through Luke Skywalker, and unlocking the path to immortality.
Born in 896 BBY, Yoda was almost nine hundred years old in the latter days of the Republic. A leading member of the Jedi High Council, his contemporaries included other legendary Masters such as Mace Windu and Ki-Adi-Mundi. During the Invasion of Naboo in 32 BBY, the maverick Qui-Gon Jinn introduced Anakin Skywalker to the High Council, believing with absolute certainty that he had discovered the prophesied Chosen One. The Jedi elders sensed that the boy was full of fear and anger and declined to train him, deeming Skywalker too old and emotionally compromised to commit himself to the Jedi Code. After Jinn's death during the liberation of Naboo, the High Council reversed their decision in spite of Yoda's continued opposition to Skywalker's apprenticeship, having sensed grave danger in his training. At the same time, the Jedi discovered that their ancient nemesis, the Sith, had returned after a millennium in hiding. Aware of the Rule of Two, Yoda was convinced that at least one more Sith Lord remained active following Obi-Wan Kenobi's victory over the Sith apprentice Darth Maul.
Over the next decade, the galaxy was on the verge of civil war with entire star systems—led by Count Dooku, Yoda's one-time Padawan—threatening to secede from the Republic by 22 BBY. Unable to defend the entire Republic on their own, the Jedi took command of the newly-formed Grand Army of the Republic, with Yoda himself leading an army of clone troopers against the Separatist Droid Army of the Confederacy of Independent Systems in the first battle of the Clone Wars. For three years Yoda led the Republic military's war effort as a Jedi General, determined to bring a swift and decisive end to the conflict, but his efforts were undermined by Darth Sidious, the Dark Lord of the Sith who conspired to destroy the Jedi and restore the Sith to power. After the Jedi Purge commenced in 19 BBY, killing thousands of Jedi both on Coruscant and across the galaxy, Yoda confronted the self-declared Galactic Emperor but failed to cut short Sidious' reign and consequently retreated into exile, leaving the Sith Master to consolidate his power with a new apprentice, the former Anakin Skywalker-turned-Darth Vader, at his side. His remaining years were spent living in isolation on the remote world of Dagobah until Anakin's son, Luke Skywalker sought out the legendary Grand Master in the hope of becoming a Jedi Knight. A year later, with his health rapidly declining, Yoda died of old age and became one with the Force in 4 ABY.
Pre-Invasion of Naboo
- "For 800 years have I trained Jedi."
- ―Yoda, to Luke Skywalker
Born 900 years before the Battle of Endor, Yoda belonged to an ancient and mysterious species. As he was keenly attuned to the Force, he joined the Jedi Order as a youngling. After undergoing the ritual known as the Gathering, he received his kyber crystal, and Professor Huyang helped him construct his first lightsaber aboard the Crucible. Thereafter, Yoda was paired up with a personal mentor. During their time together, Yoda's Jedi Master told him the tale of K'ungfu and Chuang, two great Jedi of the past. Around the age of 100, Yoda was ready to pass on what he had learned. Having attained the rank of Master, he spent the next eight centuries training and tutoring generations of Jedi. It was estimated that over his lifetime, he trained around 20,000 Jedi.
Centuries later, Yoda took on the human Dooku as his last known Padawan in the era of the Galactic Republic. While Dooku initially wanted to become the Padawan of Lene Kostana, his upset subsided when he learned he would be Yoda's apprentice. During one mission to the Wookiee homeworld of Kashyyyk, the padawan witnessed his master face off with a giant, dreadful terentatek.
Yoda visited Kashyyyk on several other occasions prior to the Battle of Kashyyyk, serving as Jedi negotiator in many incidents involving the Wookiees and their Trandoshan neighbors. This earned him the ancient title of "Defender of the Home Tree", as well as becoming a member of many Wookiee leaders' and all the inhabitants of Kachirho's honour families.
Yoda also taught outside the Master/Padawan relationship, and trained all the Jedi younglings prior to their teaming up with Jedi Masters, including Master Obi-Wan Kenobi. Kanan Jarrus, as Caleb Dume, often heard Yoda counsel "Do, or do not. There is no try." He also taught groups of younglings in the basics of Jedi training, including lightsaber instruction.
Invasion of Naboo
- "There's no doubt the mysterious warrior was a Sith."
"Always two, there are. No more, no less. A master and an apprentice."
"But which one was destroyed, the master or the apprentice?"
- ―Mace Windu and Yoda, about Darth Maul
During the invasion of the planet Naboo by the Trade Federation, Yoda served on the Jedi Council as the Grand Master of the Jedi Order, having trained Jedi students for about 800 years. He was present when Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn presented Anakin Skywalker, a young slave boy from the planet Tatooine, to the Council in the hopes of training him. Although Jinn believed Skywalker to be the Chosen One, prophesized to bring balance to the Force, Yoda and the other Council members did not share his opinion, sensing that the boy was harboring a high amount of fear and his future was uncertain. They therefore refused to allow for his training.
After Jinn and his Padawan, Obi-Wan Kenobi, returned to Naboo, they forged an alliance between the human inhabitants of the world and the native Gungan species in order to combat the Federation occupation forces. The Federation's droid army was eventually deactivated after Anakin Skywalker accidentally destroyed its command ship. During the battle, however, Jinn and Kenobi dueled a dark side Force user—Darth Maul, the Dathomirian Zabrak apprentice of the Sith Lord Darth Sidious—which cost Jinn his life.
Yoda, along with other members of the Council, was present at the Naboo victory parade and Jinn's earlier funeral, where he shared his thoughts on the apparent reemergence of the Sith with fellow Master of the Order Mace Windu, pointing out that the Rule of Two, the Sith succession system in effect at the time, meant that another Sith was still present. Unbeknownst to the two Jedi, the remaining Sith was Sheev Palpatine, the Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic, who had been sworn in after a Vote of No Confidence forced his predecessor Valorum to resign. With Jinn dead, following the events on Naboo, the Council named Jinn's former Padawan Obi-Wan Kenobi a Jedi Knight, who informed Yoda of his master's final will—that Skywalker be trained. Reluctantly, Yoda permitted him to take the boy as his Padawan.
- "I think it is time we informed the Senate that our ability to use the Force has diminished.
Only the Dark Lords of the Sith know of our weakness. If informed, the Senate is, multiply, our adversaries will."
- ―Mace Windu and Yoda
Ten years after the Naboo crisis, several thousand systems, disillusioned by heavy taxation, seceded from the Galactic Republic and formed the Confederacy of Independent Systems under the leadership of Count Dooku, a former student of Yoda who left the Order due to widespread corruption in the Republic. As the Galactic Senate, the chief governing body of the Republic, debated the creation of a standing army, an unsuccessful attempt was made on the life of Senator Amidala of Naboo. After Jedi Knight Obi-Wan Kenobi and his Padawan Anakin Skywalker cornered the assassin, the killer was in turn killed by a mysterious person who escaped using his jetpack. The events prompted the Council, which included Yoda, to appoint Kenobi to track him down.
Kenobi's investigation led him to attempt to find the planet Kamino, whose location had been missing from the Jedi Archives. This discovery alarmed Yoda, who surmised that only a Jedi could have erased the files. Interrupting a training session with the Bear Clan, Yoda helped Kenobi pinpoint the world's exact location through meditation, allowing the latter to travel there.
Following Kenobi's departure, Yoda experienced a vision while meditating, in which he heard the voice of the spirit of Qui-Gon Jinn, and sensed that Anakin Skywalker was in terrible pain. He discussed the vision with fellow Master Mace Windu afterwards.
Having arrived on Kamino, Kenobi reported that the Kaminoan cloners had created a clone army, the order for which had been placed by Jedi Master Sifo-Dyas, who had perished around the time of the Invasion of Naboo. Kenobi believed that the template used to create the army, bounty hunter Jango Fett, was the person involved in the attack on Amidala. After a brief encounter with Fett, Kenobi followed him to the planet Geonosis, where he found that Dooku's Separatists ordered the assassination attempt on Amidala and had constructed a droid army. After relaying the information to the Jedi Council, Kenobi was captured and scheduled for execution, later joined by Amidala and Anakin Skywalker.
The Clone Wars
Battle of Geonosis
- "The shroud of the dark side has fallen. Begun, the Clone War has."
- ―Master Yoda
News that Skywalker and Kenobi had been captured prompted the Council to dispatch a Jedi strike team to Geonosis, while Yoda headed to Kamino to take command of the clone forces. As the strike team interrupted the execution of Kenobi and his associates, suffering casualties at the hands of the numerically superior Confederate battle droid forces, Yoda led the clones into battle, thus beginning a galaxywide conflict that would become known as the Clone Wars.
As the clones engaged the Confederacy's forces in a massive battle, Yoda headed to rescue Kenobi and Skywalker from Dooku, who had incapacitated the duo in a duel. The diminutive Jedi Master showed his mastery and power over the Force surpassed that of Dooku by casually repelling the latter's telekinetic assault and Force lightning. He then engaged Dooku in a brief but intense duel, having the upper hand. Dooku, realizing he was outmatched by Yoda, used the Force to bring a large metal pillar down on the unconscious Skywalker and Kenobi, forcing Yoda to break off the duel and use his own powers to stop it from crushing them. Dooku used the distraction to flee aboard his personal craft. Although the battle on Geonosis ended in the Republic's favor, Yoda was concerned about the growing influence of the dark side of the Force and the outcome of the Clone Wars.
Mentoring Anakin Skywalker
As the Clone Wars progressed, Yoda decided to alleviate Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker's fear and inability to lose loved ones by assigning him a Padawan learner, Ahsoka Tano. He believed that by becoming a teacher, Skywalker would develop emotionally and that when the time came for Tano to go off on her own, he would understand that his excessive bonding to those he cared about was unnecessary. Tano traveled to the planet of Christophsis, where she presented herself to Skywalker in the midst of a battle against Confederate forces.
After the battle had concluded, Yoda himself arrived on the planet and assigned the duo to the task of finding Rotta, the son of influential Hutt crime lord Jabba, who had been kidnapped as part of a plan arranged by his uncle Ziro to alienate the Hutts and the Jedi and drag the former into war. After the two Jedi successfully completed the mission, Yoda, along with a group of clones, extracted them from the planet Tatooine.
Mission to Rugosa
- Ventress: "If Yoda is indeed the Jedi warrior you believe he is, let him prove it. Allow me to send my best troops to capture him. If he escapes, join the Republic. But should my droids defeat Yoda, consider an alliance with the Separatists."
- Katuunko: "I did not request Yoda's presence here to test him in battle."
- Yoda: "Accept the challenge I do, Your Highness. Arrive by nightfall, I will."
- ―Asajj Ventress challenges Yoda for a competition; Yoda accepts[src]
Some time later, Yoda, along with an escort of clone troopers, was sent to the neutral coral moon Rugosa to negotiate the construction of a Republic base on Toydarian territory with the incumbent monarch, King Katuunko. Simultaneously, the Confederacy dispatched Asajj Ventress, an assassin trained by Confederate leader Dooku, to the moon with droid escort to pressure Katuunko into siding with the Separatists.
Yoda's starship was ambushed by two Confederate vessels upon arriving into the system, forcing him to use an escape pod to land on the surface of the moon, accompanied by three clone troopers. The Jedi then successfully made contact with the Toydarian delegation, prompting Ventress, who was at the king's location, to challenge Yoda: if he could defeat her droid units, Toydaria would join the Republic, but a defeat would result in the planet pledging its allegiance to the Confederacy. The Jedi accepted, and Katuunko requested that he be given a fair fight—an agreement which Ventress did not intend to honor.
Encountering the droids, Yoda destroyed a squad of them by himself without using his lightsaber, and returned to assist his clone companions, until the arrival of droidekas forced them to flee. The Jedi covered their escape by deflecting the droids' blaster fire at a nearby rock formation that collapsed and crushed them, after which he and the clones retreated to a nearby cave to rest. In the cave, Yoda relaxed into his natural role as a teacher. Calling each clone by name, he raised their morale by lecturing them on their individuality in the Force.
Upon hearing the sound of more approaching Confederate units, Yoda and his escort left the cave. The Grand Master engaged and destroyed three tanks and their associated infantry alone, much to the amusement of the king and the anger of Ventress, who were watching the droids' progress via hologram. Breaking the terms of the competition, the assassin sent in droidekas to take out Yoda, which the clones prevented by launching their final rocket that caused the enemy to be buried under a rock slide.
The Malevolence crisis
As the war progressed, the Confederacy developed the Malevolence, a heavy cruiser designed to incapacitate and destroy Republic vessels with its mega-ion cannons, which proceeded to destroy dozens of ships without leaving survivors. The Jedi Council dispatched Jedi Master Plo Koon to track down the superweapon, but upon locating it, his fleet was ambushed and destroyed by the starship. Although Koon and some clones survived in an escape pod, Yoda, alongside fellow Jedi Mace Windu and Obi-Wan Kenobi, forbade Anakin Skywalker and Ahsoka Tano to search the system for survivors, citing the threat posed by the Malevolence. Skywalker and Tano, however, disregarded his warnings and successfully rescued Koon. The Malevolence was later destroyed by a concerted Republic assault.
Some time after the destruction of the Malevolence, Trade Federation Viceroy Nute Gunray was captured by the Republic on the planet of Rodia, but as he was being transported to Coruscant aboard the cruiser Tranquility by Jedi Master Luminara Unduli and Ahsoka Tano, a Separatist boarding party led by Asajj Ventress freed the prisoner. Unduli and Tano subsequently reported the loss of Gunray to Anakin Skywalker and Yoda.
Attack on the Jedi Temple
During the peak of the war, Barriss Offee with the help of Letta Turmond bombed the Jedi Temple on Coruscant. Yoda then ordered Anakin Skywalker and his Padawan Ahsoka Tano to return from Cato Neimoidia to help investigate, refusing to trust anyone who was in the temple during the bombing. Yoda's judgement was clouded, but he still guided the Jedi as the leader of the Council.
Turmond was captured by Skywalker and Tano. In prison, she requested Tano speak with her, saying Tano was the only one she could trust. When Turmond was strangled to death by way of the Force, Wilhuff Tarkin, who was serving as an admiral in the Republic Army, had Tano arrested, accusing her of being the mastermind responsible for the attack. Desperate to prove her innocence, Tano escaped the prison, resulting in a manhunt led by Anakin Skywalker and Captain Rex. During the chase, Tano lost her Shoto lightsaber.
After Tano fled to the Underworld, Yoda ordered Skywalker and Plo Koon to track her down and bring her to the Temple, with some resistance from Mace Windu, who felt that Skywalker's emotional connection to Tano would only make things worse. Tano was quickly captured by Asajj Ventress, who agreed to help the young Padawan in exchange for a pardon for Ventress' crimes as a Sith. Tano contacted Barriss Offee at the Jedi Temple. Offee led Tano into a trap by telling her she could find evidence to prove her innocence by going to a warehouse on Level 1315. There, Offee jumped Ventress, stealing her lightsabers and mask. She attacked Tano, knocking her out in front of crates of Nanodroids and effectively framing her for the bombing.
Tano was then brought back to the Temple, where Yoda and the rest of the Jedi Council reluctantly agreed to expel her from the Jedi Order and have her face a military tribunal before the Senate. Yoda, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Plo Koon and several other Council members were present in the court room, where Tano was prosecuted by Tarkin and defended by Padmé Amidala. However, before the jury could render its decision, Skywalker burst in with Barriss Offee, who confessed to being responsible for the bombings and the framing of Tano. In light of this revelation, Yoda, Skywalker and the Council personally invited Tano to rejoin the Order, but to their shock, she refused and left. Yoda would regret the Council's decision and began to question the doctrine of the war.
Uncovering The Truth
Prior to the start of the war, Palpatine and his apprentice, Count Dooku secretly created the Clone Army with the assistance of an unsuspecting Sifo-Dyas, who had seen visions of a conflict beforehand. When this was done, they had organic inhibitor chips implanted in their brains. which caused the clones to do anything Palpatine told them to, in this case execute the Jedi. With one simple command, the clones would enter a trance-like state and perform whatever orders they were given.
During the Battle of Ringo Vinda, Clone Trooper Tup murdered Jedi Master Tiplar when his inhibitor chip was activated prematurely. Sidious ordered Dooku to apprehend Tup to prevent the Jedi from discovering the truth. Tup was eventually sent to Kamino after Anakin Skywalker, Captain Rex and ARC trooper Fives were able to recover Tup from a Separatist Transport.
After escorting Tup to Kamino, Fives and Rex were greeted by Jedi Master Shaak Ti, alongside the main developer of the clones, Kaminoan scientist Nala Se. Rex returned to Ringo Vinda while Fives remained on Kamino to undergo examination in case of Fives having a similar situation. Disputes over the tests led to a debate. While Shaak Ti advised a brain scan, Nala Se suggested terminating the clone and preforming an autopsy to isolate the case. Shaak Ti contacted the Jedi Temple where Yoda, alongside Obi-Wan Kenobi, decided Tup should be brought to the temple to be examined through the Force.
What the Jedi were unaware of was that the Kaminoans knew of the inhibitor chips and were working with Count Dooku, who used his Sith name, Tyranus, to prevent the Jedi from making the connection. Dooku ordered that Tup be terminated and that the chip be sent to him to be looked at.
Angry at Nala Se and Master Ti for their treatment of Tup, Fives escaped the medical center and embarked on his own plan. Fives faked leaving the planet, but stayed to try and save Tup and discover the truth. He and the medical droid AZI-3 were able to preform a brain scan on Tup, where they learned of the inhibitor chips. Fives had the droid take the chip out of his and Tup's brains. Unfortunately, the already-weakened Tup died soon after the operation, whispering his last words to Fives. Fives blamed Nala Se for what happened to Tup. Suspecting the Kaminoans of treachery, and with the support of Master Ti, Fives insisted on presenting his evidence and the removed chips directly to Palpatine. Fives was eventually brought to Coruscant, at the request of Shaak Ti, where he was brought before the Chancellor. As the ship landed, Nala Se drugged Fives, causing him to act strange.
When Fives attempted to assassinate Palpatine, Yoda was a part of the Jedi council that ordered Anakin Skywalker to investigate. Fives was killed in the end, and Yoda was ultimately told that the doctors had found another cause, and that a vaccination had been prepared, in case of a future incident.
- "Know now we do that guide the creation of the clones from the beginning, Dooku did. Hm, our enemy created an army for us."
"If this was known, public confidence in the war effort, the Jedi, and the Republic would vanish. There would be mass chaos."
"Cover up this discovery we must. No one, not even the Chancellor, may know. Valiant men the clones have proven to be. Saved my life and yours they have many times. Believe in them we must. Win the war swiftly we must, before our enemy's designs reach completion, whatever they may be."
- ―Yoda and Mace Windu
Sometime later, the Jedi received a distress signal from a moon near Oba Diah. Sending Plo Koon and Commander Wolfe to investigate, they found the remains of a shuttle and the lightsaber of Jedi Master Sifo-Dyas, who was killed sometime around the Battle of Naboo while dealing with a conflict on Felucia. Upon reviewing the temple archives, Jocasta Nu and the Jedi found that the information had been sealed by order of the Supreme Chancellor. While sending Anakin Skywalker and his master, Obi-Wan Kenobi to Felucia, Yoda went to speak with Palpatine, not knowing he was the Sith Lord that orchestrated the murder and the creation of the clone army. Palpatine told Yoda to visit Chancellor Valorum, as these events had happened before the vote of no confidence that led to Palpatine becoming chancellor. Palpatine then contacted Count Dooku, telling him to destroy the last piece of the puzzle before the Jedi would be able to unravel the mystery.
Anakin and Obi-Wan attempted to communicate with the native tribe on the Felucia, but were unable to understand them. They did learn, however, that a second Jedi had shown up with Sifo-Dyas.
Valorum told Yoda that he had sent Sifo-Dyas to negotiate with the Pyke Syndicate to stop a booming drug trade underneath Coruscant. Valorum also revealed that he kept this secret, fearing his opponents in the bureaucracy. The talks were postponed after the Council sent Sifo-Dyas to intervene on Felucia. Valorum was unable to identify the second Jedi, but did say that his assistant, Silman, was with Sifo-Dyas when he was shot down.
Eventually, Yoda dispatched Anakin and Obi-Wan to Oba Diah, where they learned the Pykes were paid to shoot down the ship carrying Sifo-Dyas, but had kept Silman captive as leverage and that Dooku was in fact the individual known as Tyranus, leading them to realize Dooku impersonated Sifo-Dyas to help push forward the Clone Wars. Yoda, not knowing how to stop the plot, suggested the Jedi keep the discovery a secret, and that they should keep playing the Sith Lord's game.
- "It is I, Qui-Gon Jinn."
"That cannot be. Dead, you are."
"No. I am part of the Living Force, Yoda."
- ―Qui-Gon Jinn communes to Yoda.
While meditating during the end of the war, Yoda heard the voice of Qui-Gon Jinn, who demonstrated his presence by levitating Yoda. The encounter left Yoda distracted during the subsequent Council gathering, leaving them worried about whether the stresses of the war were finally taking its toll on him. While strolling through the Temple gardens, Yoda was greeted by Anakin. Yoda asked him about his encounter with Qui-Gon's spirit on Mortis, which Anakin had dismissed as a trick, noting the Jedi belief that one could not retain their identity after becoming one with the Force. Yoda responded that he now questioned this dogma.
Yoda confessed what happened to the Council, much to their disbelief. They agreed though to meditate with him, to verify his experience. Despite meditating together for an entire day, they were unable to hear anything. Ki-Adi-Mundi expressed worry that Yoda had become susceptible to Sith manipulation, so Yoda underwent medical tests that revealed that he was still in good health. Jedi Doctor Rig Nema suggested Yoda undergo a deprivation ritual that would allow him to meditate more strongly and find the source of the voice.
Agreeing, Yoda was suspended in a liquid tank with an oxygen mask to bring him as close as possible to death without actually becoming one with the Force. While unconscious, Qui-Gon's voice requested Yoda go to Dagobah, and to tell no one about it. After, Obi-Wan broke open the tank due to his concern over Yoda's failing life signs.
Put on bedrest and under guard, Yoda convinced Anakin to help him escape by posing as simply accompanying each other for a walk. Guided to the Jedi Temple Hangar, Anakin lent Yoda his astromech droid R2-D2 to accompany him to his personal interceptor. Yoda and R2-D2 flew to Dagobah, where Yoda asked the droid to stay with their ship while he found a clearing to meditate.
Qui-Gon's voice greeted him. Yoda asked why he could not see him. Qui-Gon explained he had not been fully trained enough to do so. The Living Force appeared to Yoda in the form of fireflies, guiding Yoda to a cave strong with the dark side, it showed the Jedi Master a vision of the future, where a hooded Sith Lord slaughtered the Jedi. Qui-Gon explained to a distraught Yoda that he would help him bring hope for the future, and directed him to the planet that spawned the midi-chlorians.
Arriving there, Yoda gave his lightsaber to R2-D2 for safekeeping, and descended into the world to meet the Force Priestesses, who agreed to teach him how to achieve life after death. First, Yoda confronted a manifestation of his own dark side, conquering his hubris. Next, he witnessed a vision of the Jedi massacred in the Temple, where an apparition of a dying Ahsoka Tano asked him if she would still become one with the Force after being expelled from the Jedi Order; this vision was a manifestation of Yoda's guilt over having placed Tano on the path that led to her departure. An apparition of Katooni then invited Yoda to enter a peaceful courtyard to escape these painful events. Seeing Qui-Gon Jinn, Kenobi, Tano and Dooku together, alive and full Jedi, Yoda eventually recognized the vision's falsehood, overcoming its temptation and his attachment to those that have fallen.
Instructed to complete his tests on the Sith homeworld of Moraband, Yoda and R2-D2 flew to the valley where the ancient Sith Lords were buried. Recognizing the danger, Yoda instructed R2-D2 to return to the Jedi Temple and inform the Council of what happened, if he did not come back after three nights. Spectres of a serpent, undead Sith warriors and even Darth Bane himself confronted him, but Yoda brushed them off. As he entered a temple execution chamber, the Force Priestesses warned Yoda that whatever he encountered there would be beyond their control.
Unknown to Yoda, Darth Sidious and Dooku sensed his presence on Moraband, and met in an abandoned tower in the industrial sector of Coruscant. Using Dooku and Yoda's Force-bond, Sidious planned to reach out to Yoda and crush his spirit. Appearing to Yoda in the form of Sifo-Dyas, Sidious had Yoda wake up in a Republic attack gunship with Anakin and members of the 501st Legion, en route to terminate the Sith on Coruscant. As they arrived, the clones, lead by Captain Rex, rushed at Dooku only to be hit with Sith lightning. Skywalker immediately attacked Dooku while Sidious fled. Walking sadly past the fallen clones, a dismayed Yoda witnessed Skywalker brutally decapitate Dooku. However, he left Skywalker and pursued Sidious.
Emerging out on a catwalk, Yoda and Sidious dueled. Skywalker tried to help, but Sidious knocked him out. Sensing an opportunity, Sidious damaged the catwalk, forcing Yoda to divide his attention between Force-lifting Skywalker to save him from falling to his death and blocking Sidious' Sith lightning. After Sidious taunted him by suggesting he sacrifice Skywalker to concentrate on defeating him, Yoda put down his lightsaber to ensure Skywalker's safety. As the catwalk collapsed, Yoda maneuvered Skywalker to safety and grabbed Sidious, dragging him down too. The incident proved Yoda's selflessness and demonstrated his resolve to Sidious, who concluded the illusion as he realized it would take more to defeat the Jedi Master.
Yoda awoke, and was greeted by a Priestess who explained he would continue his training with Qui-Gon's spirit. As she disappeared in a glow of light, Yoda had a vision of the future, including his own death. Yoda returned to the Jedi Temple, where Windu and Kenobi greeted him in the garden. Yoda claimed his journey had been uneventful, but felt it had demonstrated the Jedi had been wrong to wage the war on the Republic's behalf.
Utapau Crystal Crisis
Following the death of Master Tu-Anh on the sinkhole world of Utapau, Yoda and his fellow Jedi Council members sent Master Kenobi and Anakin on a mission to investigate her death. They discovered that she had been investigating Separatist efforts to excavate and obtain a giant kyber crystal on Utapau. After destroying the crystal and thus denying the Separatists access to the weapon, Yoda was present at a Council meeting when the two Jedi gave a report of the events on Utapau. During the meeting, Yoda recounted how the ancient Sith had constructed superweapons using massive kyber crystals to power them up. He feared that Dooku's mysterious master Darth Sidious had similar intentions.
The Dooku assassination attempt
- "One, there is, who has tried and failed. Yet closer has she come than any other to killing Count Dooku."
"You can't possibly mean Ventress!"
- ―Yoda and Kenobi discussing the merits of partnering Ventress with Quinlan Vos
Yoda and his fellow Jedi Council members witnessed Count Dooku's devastating attack on Mahranee, the home world of the Mahran species, via hologram. The Council was reluctant to condone an assassination, but ultimately concluded that killing Dooku was necessary to end the war and prevent more deaths. The Council decided to use Master Quinlan Vos, who had considerable experience with undercover work, to assassinate the Separatist leader. When Vos suggested that a partner accompany him, Yoda recommended Asajj Ventress, Dooku's former Sith apprentice and a Nightsister for that mission, knowing her hatred for Dooku. Ventress agreed to assist Vos with his mission but insisted that he had to learn the ways of the dark side.
Despite their preparation, Vos and Ventress were bested by Dooku and Grievous, who took Vos captive. Dooku then managed to bring Vos over to the dark side by revealing that Ventress had murdered his late Master, Tholme. After Vos spurned Ventress' offer to rescue him, he became Dooku's newest Sith apprentice and assumed the persona of "Admiral Enigma." Ventress informed Master Kenobi who conveyed the news to his fellow Council members including Yoda. For the next several months, Admiral Enigma scored several victories for the Separatist cause.
When Vos' old friend Akar-Deshu, a Mahran Jedi, brought Ventress into a Council meeting to discuss rescuing Vos, Yoda and Kenobi spoke up for Ventress when Windu wanted to arrest her. During the proceedings, Yoda and his fellow Jedi learned that Ventress had instructed Vos in the dark side in order to defeat Dooku. While Windu was suspicious of Ventress, Yoda and Kenobi were convinced that she genuinely cared for Vos and that she had rejected the Sith ways for good. After sending Ventress along with Desh and Anakin outside, Yoda and his fellow Jedi debated whether to include Ventress in their rescue mission. When Master Kenobi suggested leading the operation to rescue Vos, Yoda accepted Kenobi's offer and also argued that Ventress was key to the rescue mission. He also recommended that Kenobi take both Ventress and his former Padawan Skywalker along for the mission.
After receiving intelligence from Admiral Wullf Yularen that Count Dooku and "Admiral Enigma" were planning to attack Taris, the Jedi Council decided that they had to move quickly to rescue Quinlan. In the end, the Council decided to offer Ventress a pardon for all her crimes in return for rescuing Vos. The rescue mission was a success and the Jedi succeeded in recovering Vos alive. To reward her services, Ventress was formally pardoned. Unknown to Yoda and his colleagues, Vos had become a Separatist double agent in order to gain Dooku's trust so that he could learn the identity of Darth Sidious and destroy the Sith once and for all.
Using his position in the Jedi Order, Vos leaked intelligence about Jedi and Republic military operations to Count Dooku; allowing the Separatists to undermine these operations. After several Council members voiced their suspicions about Vos' true loyalties, Yoda had a personal meeting with Vos and was able to deduce that Quinlan had fallen to the dark side. To test Vos' loyalties, the Jedi Council sent him to assassinate Dooku, but secretly sent Kenobi and Skywalker to tail him.
Vos managed to defeat Dooku in lightsaber combat, but did not kill him. When Vos demanded that Dooku lead him to Darth Sidious, Kenobi and Skywalker promptly revealed themselves and arrested the two men. After learning of Vos and Dooku's arrest, Master Yoda ordered Kenobi to bring them back to the Jedi Temple where they would be interrogated and executed for their crimes. However, Vos and Dooku escaped with the unwitting help of Ventress, leading to the events of the Second battle of Christophsis. In the end, Ventress helped Vos return to the light side, but was killed by Dooku. Kenobi and Skywalker then recaptured Vos and brought him back to Coruscant.
After Vos confessed all his crimes and explained his motivations to destroy the Sith, Yoda and his fellow Council members accepted Vos' repentance as genuine and pardoned him. Kenobi, who believed that the order to assassinate Dooku was morally wrong and responsible for Vos' fall to the dark side, took on the responsibility of monitoring Vos during his rehabilitation. Kenobi accompanied Vos to Dathomir for Ventress' funeral.
Distrust of the Chancellor and Battle of Kashyyyk
- "I sense a plot to destroy the Jedi. The Dark Side of the Force surrounds the Chancellor. [...] The Jedi Council will have to take control of the Senate to ensure a peaceful transition."
"To a dark place this line of thought will take us. Great care we must take."
- ―Mace Windu and Yoda
Three years after the initial battle on Geonosis, the Republic was crumbling under the attacks of the Confederacy. Throughout the course of the war, Palpatine had been granted ever increasing personal authority by the Senate to command both the war and the Republic at large. The Jedi Council, though reluctant to oppose the extremely popular Chancellor, nonetheless grew ever more concerned about the continual centralization of political power in Palpatine.
After a Separatist attack on the Republic capital world of Coruscant by General Grievous, Skywalker came before Yoda, seeking counsel. He had been experiencing terrifying visions of the death of a loved one, though he did not reveal that the one in question was his secret wife, Padmé Amidala. Yoda warned Skywalker to be wary of his visions and of his own feelings, as fear was a path to the dark side, and advised him to "train himself to let go of everything he feared to lose". Skywalker, however, was dissatisfied with this answer, as he could not bear the thought of losing someone he loved. Shortly afterwards, Palpatine, hoping to increase his influence over the Jedi Council and further ingratiate himself with Anakin Skywalker, appointed the young Jedi to be his personal representative on the Council. The Council, having little choice, begrudgingly accepted Palpatine's interference, but refused to grant Skywalker the rank of Jedi Master, infuriating him. Additionally, the Council gave Skywalker the unofficial assignment of spying on Palpatine, an assignment which Skywalker was less than enthusiastic about, as he regarded Palpatine as a friend and a mentor.
Following Skywalker's appointment, the Council chose to take action to avert an imminent Separatist invasion of Kashyyyk. Yoda chose to personally oversee the defense, as he was held in high esteem by the Wookiees. Before the battle, Yoda participated in a holographic session of the Council, where he learned from Skywalker that Republic intelligence located the fugitive General Grievous in the Utapau system. When Skywalker volunteered to lead the campaign, with the stated approval of Palpatine, Yoda and Mace Windu both disagreed, and Yoda nominated Kenobi to be sent instead. Agreeing with Yoda, fellow councilor Ki-Adi-Mundi seconded the nomination and the decision was made.
While Yoda was on Kashyyyk, Supreme Chancellor Palpatine revealed his true identity as the Sith Lord Darth Sidious, turned Anakin Skywalker to the dark side of the Force, and defeated a group of Jedi Council members who had come to arrest him.
- "How many other Jedi have managed to survive?"
"Heard from no one have we."
- ―Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda, after Order 66
Christening his newfound apprentice Darth Vader, Palpatine sent him and and the 501st Attack Battalion to attack the Jedi temple and slaughter all who resided there. Meanwhile, Sidious began to broadcast Order 66 to the clone troopers, a contingency order that required them to eliminate their Jedi Generals.
As the clone army turned on their leaders galaxywide, Yoda sensed the deaths of his fellow Jedi and fell to his knees. Commander Gree and another trooper received Order 66 a few moments afterwards and prepared to shoot Yoda. However, Yoda sensed their intentions and decapitated the duo with his lightsaber. He then proceeded to escape with the help of the Wookiees Chewbacca and Tarfful, rendezvousing with Senator Bail Organa of Alderaan and Obi-Wan Kenobi, who had escaped death on Utapau.
The two Jedi discussed their situation, during which Bail and Yoda informed Kenobi that the Temple was broadcasting a coded retreat message, ordering all surviving Jedi to return to Coruscant. Yoda and Kenobi decided to return to the Temple and reconfigure the beacon to warn any survivors to go into hiding, and to that end Bail took them to Coruscant. The two Jedi fought their way in and witnessed the effects of the rampage by Vader and his clone unit, including the visible lightsaber cuts on several dead clones. In the meantime, Palpatine reforms the Republic into the first Galactic Empire with himself as its Emperor. That was the beginning of the Age of the Empire.
The Age of the Empire
Duel in the Senate
- "I have waited a long time for this moment, my little green friend… at last, the Jedi are no more."
"Not if anything to say about it, I have! […] At an end your rule is, and not short enough it was."
- ―Palpatine and Yoda
Having recalibrated the signal, Kenobi wished to learn the identity of the one responsible for the massacre. Yoda, aware that watching recordings of their fellow Jedi being slaughtered would cause Kenobi pain, cautioned him before the younger Jedi activated the security recordings. The duo thus learned of Anakin Skywalker's fall to the dark side, his Sith title of Darth Vader, Palpatine's Sith identity and the formation of the Galactic Empire from the Republic. Agreeing that the two Sith had to be destroyed, Yoda headed to the Galactic Senate to confront Palpatine, while a deeply reluctant Kenobi departed to the volcanic planet of Mustafar to face his former apprentice.
Upon arriving into the Senate, Yoda confronted Palpatine, who surprised the Jedi and rendered him unconscious with a burst of Force lightning. As the Sith boasted how he came to eradicate the Jedi Order, Yoda managed to wake up and slammed his opponent into a wall. The duo then drew their lightsabers and engaged in a fierce duel that soon continued into the central auditorium of the Senate Building. Briefly separated from Yoda, Sidious launched the numerous Senate hoverpods at his opponent, but the Jedi nevertheless managed to catch up with him, engaging him at close quarters again with his lightsaber drawn. The Sith then blasted Yoda with a burst of Force lightning which tore Yoda's lightsaber from his hand but which the Jedi proceeded to successfully deflect with his bare palms; the buildup of energy subsequently triggered an explosion that blew both combatants apart and caused Yoda to fall to the bottom of the chamber while Sidious was thrown out of the pod but managed to barely hold on to one of its guardrails, gaining the high ground. Realizing he was defeated, Yoda fled through the maintenance tunnels of the building and contacted Organa to rescue him via his airspeeder, considering the duel his personal failure and voicing his intent to go into self-imposed exile.
- "Into exile I must go. Failed, I have."
- ―Yoda, to Bail Organa
After being rescued by Organa, the two proceeded to the asteroid Polis Massa, where Yoda conferred with Qui-Gon Jinn's spirit, who offered him to train him in techniques that could help him retain his identity after his death. Obi-Wan Kenobi, having defeated but not killed Vader on Mustafar, arrived soon thereafter, bringing with him the dying Senator Amidala. She gave birth to her twins from Anakin Skywalker and named them Luke and Leia before her death.
Sensing the children's power in the Force, Yoda, Kenobi and Organa decided to keep them hidden in unsuspecting locations to avoid detection by the Empire; Luke Skywalker was delivered to the Lars family on Tatooine, while Organa personally adopted his sister, Leia. As the trio prepared to go their separate ways, Yoda asked Kenobi for a moment of his time. He revealed that he had training for him during his solitude on Tatooine, and that Qui-Gon Jinn had reached the path to immortality, having returned from the Netherworld of the Force. Yoda decided he would teach Kenobi to communicate with Jinn.
Using an E3-standard starship lifeboat, Yoda returned to Dagobah to begin his own exile. The lifeboat served as Yoda's initial shelter but it started to degrade within a year due to Dagobah's swampy environment. As the first shelter was slowly consumed by the swamp, Yoda built a new home for himself. He thus settled down to wait for the twins to grow up, and continued his studies of the Force. Following the destruction of the Jedi Order, Yoda was listed as one of the Inquisitorius' priority targets amongst presumed survivors of the Jedi Purge.
Helping the Spectres
- "Master Yoda, you're powerful. You must know a way to destroy Vader and his Inqusitors."
"Padawan, thousands of Jedi once there were. Then came war. In our arrogance, join the conflict swiftly we did. Fear, anger, hate. Consumed by the dark side, the Jedi were."
"Was it wrong for the Jedi to fight? Is it wrong for me to protect my friends?"
"Wrong? Hmm. A long time, fought I did. Consumed by fear, I was, though see it I did not."
"You were afraid?"
"Yes, afraid. Hmm, surprised are you? A challenge lifelong it is, not to bend fear into anger."
- ―Ezra Bridger consults Yoda through the Force.
During his exile on Dagobah, Yoda kept an eye on other Jedi throughout the galaxy, including those who ventured into the various Jedi Temples found amongst the stars. Approximately four years before the Battle of Yavin, Yoda spoke to Kanan Jarrus, who had been the Padawan of Depa Billaba and a survivor of Order 66. Jarrus had traveled to the Jedi Temple on the planet Lothal with his own Padawan, Ezra Bridger, to whom Yoda also spoke. Bridger was in the temple in order to overcome his greatest fears; Yoda acted as an anonymous guide in helping Bridger do so and to understand why he wanted to become a Jedi and how to withdraw from the anger and the wish of revenge within him. This guidance led Bridger to receive a kyber crystal, which he used to build his own lightsaber. Meanwhile, Yoda counseled Jarrus about Jarrus' insecurities as a teacher.
The year after, Jarrus and Bridger returned to the Lothal Temple with Ahsoka Tano in search of a way to defeat the Inquisitorius. Yoda cast an illusion of the Jedi Temple Guard for Jarrus, including the Grand Inquisitor as he was before the Jedi Purge. The Inquisitor forced Jarrus to recognize his fears and knighted him a true Jedi. Meanwhile, Bridger pleaded with Yoda for help: despite his pacifism, the Jedi Master ultimately directed him to go to Malachor. When the other Inquisitors arrived, Yoda used the Temple Guard to distract them as the Jedi escaped. As she fled, Tano turned back and saw Yoda, who smiled and waved at her: she smiled back.
Galactic Civil War
Taking a new apprentice
- "Do, or do not. There is no try."
- ―Yoda to Luke Skywalker
Years later, Yoda was feeling his age and isolation. He also harbored regrets about having not taken Anakin Skywalker's daughter as his apprentice. However, he was not confident that he had enough time left to teach another pupil. After Obi-Wan Kenobi was killed, he reached out to Yoda from the netherworld of the Force and requested that Skywalker's child be trained. The Jedi Master readily agreed until he found out that Kenobi was actually speaking of Anakin's unfocused son instead. Nevertheless, Yoda begrudgingly allowed Kenobi to direct the boy to him.
At the same time, Yoda, having run out of supplies for his stew, embarked on a journey to hunt for his food. On the way back, a cliff collapses, trapping the Jedi Master. Having vowed to never wield a lightsaber again, he used his Force powers to free himself. He gained clarity from it, having learned from his failures during the Jedi Purge, and forgave himself so that the Jedi Order would not end. He then returned to his hut with his newfound bounty.
Skywalker then arrived. To test him, Yoda did not reveal his true identity and instead promised to lead him to Yoda; Skywalker's subsequent frustration and his age made the Jedi doubtful as to whether it was a good idea to train the boy, but Kenobi's spirit managed to convince him to do so.
Yoda proceeded to tutor Skywalker with a variety of exercises, including the telekinetic manipulation of objects in the area. As part of his training, he also sent Skywalker into a nearby cave, which was powerful with the dark side in order to demonstrate the dangers of falling to the dark side of the Force. During his tenure with Yoda, Skywalker sensed that his friends were in danger in Cloud City on the gas giant Bespin, and headed there to confront Darth Vader in spite of Yoda's and Kenobi's persuasion to the contrary. Although Kenobi was distraught by Skywalker's rushed departure, Yoda reminded him that there was still another offspring of Anakin Skywalker—Leia Organa.
- "Luke... ...when gone am I, the last of the Jedi, will you be. Luke... ...the Force runs strong in your family. Pass on what you have learned. Luke... ...There... ...is... ... another... ...Sk... ...Sky... ...walker..."
- ―Yoda's last words, to Luke Skywalker
Skywalker, having engaged in a duel with Vader on Cloud City, returned to Dagobah after a year. Yoda, ill and very close to death, confirmed what Vader had revealed to the young Jedi on Bespin: that the Sith Lord indeed was Anakin Skywalker, his father. He also warned him that with his training fully complete, his final task would be confronting Vader again and defeating him, and cautioned Skywalker not to underestimate the Force powers of Galactic Emperor Palpatine. Yoda also said that when he dies, Luke will become the last of the Jedi. Therefore, he wanted Luke to pass on what he had learned. Finally, he also managed to inform him of the existence of another member of the Skywalker family. Yoda then died, and his body disappeared as he became one with the Force.
Postmortem and legacy
- "Yoda will always be with you."
- ―The spirit of Obi-Wan Kenobi to Luke Skywalker, shortly after Yoda's death
Thanks to the techniques passed on to him by Qui-Gon Jinn's spirit, Yoda managed to retain his consciousness without a physical presence by becoming a Force spirit. Luke Skywalker used the training he received to confront Palpatine and Darth Vader aboard the Death Star II over the forest moon Endor as part of an all-out attack on the station by the anti-Imperial Rebel Alliance, defeating Vader and turning him back to the light side of the Force, resulting in Palpatine's death at the hands of the redeemed Anakin Skywalker. After his redemption, Anakin would die. Somehow, Yoda managed to teach Anakin the ability of retaining his consciousness after death. As the rebels and Luke celebrated on the surface of the moon due to the demolition of Death Star and the deaths of Palpatine and Vader, the ghosts of Anakin, Kenobi, and Yoda briefly appeared to Luke. For the next years, Yoda's spirit, alongside Obi-Wan and Anakin, continued to guide Luke.
Sometime later, after Rey had visited Luke on his hermit-island on Ahch-To, a disillusioned and self-loathing Skywalker tried to burn down what few Jedi artifacts and writings were left in hopes that it would rid the galaxy of the Jedi once and for all, who, through him, had failed. Luke was surprised by the sudden appearance of Master Yoda as a Force spirit, who not only didn't seem to mind the ancient scripts burning up, but was the one to actually start the fire by causing lightning to strike the tree. In fact, unbeknownst to Luke, Rey had already taken the Sacred Jedi texts when she left. During their meeting, Yoda pointed out that mistakes and failure were important lessons, if not the most important lesson, for a Jedi Master. Ultimately, Yoda helped Skywalker come to terms with his failed training of Ben Solo, and to realize that Rey already was a powerful Force user in her own right that didn't need his help; in reality, it was Luke that needed to forgive himself. This final, heartfelt meeting between the two friends led Luke to change his mind and help save the Resistance from certain defeat during the Battle of Crait.
During the Battle of Exegol in 35 ABY, Yoda's voice was heard by Rey among the voices of many Jedi of the past who aided her with destroying the resurrected Darth Sidious once and for all. "Alone, never have you been", he told her, before telling Rey to "rise in the Force."
Personality and traits
- "You knew Master Yoda?"
"Yes. He taught almost all of the younglings in the temple, at one point or another."
"Kanan described him to me. Small, green, and wrinkly with pointy ears. But he didn't know what he was really like."
"I'm not sure anyone did. He was wise, kind, but when I was young, he seemed happier. As the Clone War dragged on, he carried a great burden, a deep sorrow, as if he knew before anyone else that one time was ending, and another beginning."
- ―Ezra Bridger and Ahsoka Tano
Known for his wisdom, Yoda had spent eight centuries training and tutoring generations of Jedi. He was reluctant to accept Anakin Skywalker or Luke Skywalker for Jedi training, considering them unfit. In both cases, however, he allowed Obi-Wan Kenobi to persuade him into accepting them as trainees.
When Dooku triggered a partial room collapse during his duel with Yoda on Geonosis, the Jedi, confronted with the choice of pursuing the fleeing Sith or protecting the hurt Obi-Wan Kenobi and unconscious Anakin Skywalker from the falling debris, opting to save his comrades instead of going after Dooku. However, when fellow Master Plo Koon's fleet was destroyed by the Confederate superweapon Malevolence, Yoda forbade Anakin Skywalker and Ahsoka Tano to conduct a search for Koon, citing the danger posed by the Separatist vessel.
Yoda was able to resist being tempted by the specter of the dead Sith Lord Darth Bane, who had appeared to him in a vision on the planet Moraband, recognizing that the spirit was a mere illusion and rejecting its call to the dark side.
As he neared his death before the Battle of Endor commenced, Yoda accepted his own mortality and imminent demise and died becoming one with the Force.
Despite his intensive Jedi training and high status within the Order, he stated that he secretly had a dislike for ancient Jedi texts. He also had a good sense of humor and a sense of curiosity, despite his age and wisdom, which was shown when he playfully rummaged through Luke's belongings when he first met him, fought R2-D2 for a torch, and laughed gleefully when he supposedly set the ancient Jedi texts on fire, and finding Luke's continued ignorance amusing, commenting that he had "missed him".
Yoda was highly secretive about his homeworld and never revealed it to anyone.
Powers and abilities
- "The history of items, does the Force permit Vos to understand. The history of a soul, does the Force permit me to understand."
- ―Yoda about his abilities
Wielding a short green-bladed lightsaber, Yoda was capable of holding his own in combat against opponents such as the Sith Lords Count Dooku and Darth Sidious. During his duel with Dooku on the planet Geonosis, Yoda was able to repulse various metal pieces and stone slabs thrown at him by his opponent and deflected a barrage of Force lightning with just his palms, before engaging the Sith in direct combat that ended with Dooku taking flight. He was on one occasion able to telekinetically disarm the Sith Assassin, Asajj Ventress by simply gesturing at her weapons.
When he confronted Darth Sidious in the Senate building, Yoda sent the Sith flying through the air with a Force push as well as stopping and redirecting a Senate hoverpod Sidious had thrown at him during their duel. As with Dooku, Yoda also deflected Sidious' Force lightning attack using just his palms, although the resulting energy buildup created an explosion that threw both combatants apart. In spite of his abilities, however, the Jedi Master was unable to defeat Sidious and was forced to escape.
In order to teach Luke Skywalker that anything was possible with the Force, Yoda levitated his student's sunken T-65B X-wing starfighter out of a swamp of Dagobah and onto dry land with no visible strain. Yoda could also stop strikes from giants of living stone.
During a confrontation with Confederate forces on the coral moon of Rugosa, Yoda annihilated an entire squad of droids without using his lightsaber, and destroyed three assault tanks and their accompanying infantry single-handedly.
His abillity to use the combative applications of the Force notwithstanding, Yoda's incredibly strong connection to the Force combined with his years of extensive study also granted him numerous supplementary abilities. During the trial of Quinlan Vos, Yoda revealed that he could uncover the alignment of a Force-user just by touching them—stating that the Force had permitted him to read the history of a soul, able to easily sense that he had fallen to the Dark Side despite Vos being proficient enough to hide it from many other Jedi. While physically isolated on Dagobah, Yoda was able to see other Jedi that were active in the Force; he could not see one that had forsaken the ways of the Jedi. He could keep in mental contact with the Jedi Temples across the galaxy, and telepathically converse with any Jedi within them. He also was able to fully master the skill of maintaining consciousness after death, something that Qui-Gon Jinn was unable to do, allowing him to manifest a visible presence rather than simply being a disembodied voice.
Yoda was also shown to be capable of experiencing Force visions. However, he understood that Force prophecy was not absolute and that the future was always in motion. His visions led him to foresee the fall of the Jedi in the Clone Wars and even his own death.
Yoda was also shown to have a level of proficiency in piloting despite often leaving it to his soldiers, as when he was forced to travel alone by Qui-Gon Jinn, Yoda displayed the ability to pilot Anakin's personal interceptor comfortably and was able to avoid inflicting any damage on it until he returned to the Jedi.
As a Force spirit, Yoda was evidently capable of either manipulating weather to create lightning strikes, or summoning such strikes himself. He was also shown to be capable of striking Luke Skywalker with his walking stick, demonstrating an ability to interact with the living world in a physical sense despite both Yoda and the stick being ostensibly non-corporeal.
Behind the scenes
- "The idea of using another person, perhaps an alien, for Luke to play off of came up during story meetings. George Lucas and Leigh Brackett thought that the alien could be an Indian desert type, very childlike even though he's an old man. He at first should be repulsive and slimy but then should become kind and wise. He appears as a crazy little nitwit that goes around scurrying like a rat but ultimately teaches Luke a great deal about the Force."
- ―Laurent Bouzereau about Yoda's development for Episode V
Originally named "Minch Yoda" before it was shortened to simply Yoda, the character made his first appearance in the 1980 film Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back, and subsequently appeared in Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi, the closing installment of the original trilogy. He was also featured in all three episodes of the prequel trilogy, and multiple episodes of the Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels animated television series. Yoda also played a role in various Expanded Universe material now under the Star Wars Legends brand and thus non-canonical.
Many of the information and training that Yoda gave to Luke on Dagobah was originally going to be given by Ben Kenobi, but due to Kenobi's death in A New Hope, George Lucas conceived Yoda to fulfill the role of Luke's teacher after Kenobi's death. Early concepts of Yoda imagined him as a large alien before he was reimplemented as a tiny one, with various gnome– and elfin-like portrayals being created by the design team of Episode V.
Once Yoda's appearance was finalized, make-up and creatures supervisor Stuart Freeborn created a detailed puppet, brought to life on screen by Frank Oz. A new model, younger in appearance, was built by Nick Dudman's animatronics crew for the filming of Episode I, in which Yoda also appeared as a CGI model for two shots' duration. In Episode II, Yoda's character was realized entirely through computer-generated imagery, partly due to the practical necessity imposed by the action scenes of Yoda's duel with Dooku, and partly due to the determination of Animation Director Rob Coleman. Designed specifically to not exceed Oz's puppetwork in realism, the animated version of Yoda was accepted after several shots from Empire Strikes Back were recreated using the new technology as animation tests and evaluated.
Yoda's Star Wars: The Clone Wars incarnation was voiced by veteran Star Wars voice actor Tom Kane. During the Revenge of the Sith DVD press conference in 2005, Frank Oz initially mentioned that he was going to be involved in the series, but in a 2007 interview with Aintitcoolnews.com he eventually denied any involvement. In spite of this, Oz later returned to voice the character in Star Wars Rebels.
Frank Oz also reprised his role as Yoda in both the 2015 film Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens and the 2017 film Star Wars: Episode VIII The Last Jedi. In The Force Awakens, Yoda's voice was heard during Rey's Force vision along with Obi-Wan Kenobi's. During the film's early development, Yoda was originally going to have a bigger role, a decision that went far enough to ask Frank Oz to record some lines as Yoda, although these recordings went unused when the character was cut from the film. According to The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson, for Yoda's appearance in the film: "Neal Scanlan and his team did a recreation of the Yoda puppet. It's not only a puppet, it's an exact replica of the Empire puppet. They found the original molds for it. They found the woman that painted the original eyes for Yoda. Then Frank came and worked with them for a few weeks to get the puppet right. He did a lot of testing and a lot of adjusting with the puppet creators. It was amazing to watch the process."
The number of toes on Yoda's feet has long been debated. In Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know, Yoda is given as having three toes at the front of each of his feet, and one at the back, comparing them with that of many birds.
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