Jeremy hopes the Force is with him as he pursues a forensics career in the swamps of Louisiana.
Jedi in The Legends Timeline
As an avid Star Wars fan, I've thoroughly enjoyed delving into both the canon timeline dealing with Episodes 7-9 and the now alternate-universe stories, referred to as the "Legends" timeline. In this narrative, Luke succeeds at raising a new generation of Jedi who are revamped to embrace, not reject, positive emotions. Some characters who perished in Episodes 7-9 still live in Legends, while others have passed away. We also finally see just how strong a Skywalker can become when properly trained and unhindered by mechanical limits.
But not all the strongest Legends Jedi come after Return of the Jedi. Let's rank and provide justification for the ten most powerful Jedi in the galaxy far, far away!
10. Mara Jade
Luke Skywalker's eventual wife shows surprising strength but even more adaptability. Combining the skills of a Jedi trained by Kyle Katarn with those of an assassin trained by the Emperor, Mara wasn't afraid to fight dirty if meant saving the life of a loved one. Whether it's a blaster, shoto, or even vibroblade, she approached threats with as many contingency plans as possible, and could take most anyone in a good old saber duel when needed.
Speaking of which, Mara received Luke's first blue lightsaber (originally Anakin's) in the novels just as Rey does in the new trilogy.
"I always play fair. Exactly as fair as my opponents."
9. Kyle Katarn
A former Imperial soldier, Kyle Katarn appeared in many video games and novels throughout the Expanded Universe. Using the same style as Luke (Form 5, Djem So), the ever-logical Kyle vanquished a great many threats to the galaxy. He ultimately earned a seat on Luke's new Jedi Council and was even donned the Order's Battlemaster.
Kyle's highlights include:
- Mastery over both the light and dark sides of the Force
- Training powerful figures such as Mara Jade and Jaden Korr
- Harnessing the Valley of Jedi, a hidden Force nexus that can boost one's Force abilities
"The dark side? I've been there. Do your worst."
8. Obi-Wan Kenobi
A mentor for two generations of Skywalkers, Obi-Wan stood against injustice in the galaxy throughout his life. Trained by Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan's wit, diplomatic skills, and Force mastery earned him a place on the Council at a relatively young age. After Order 66, as "Old Ben" he later serves as guardian and teacher to a young Luke Skywalker.
Obi-Wan's influence was so significant that both the canon and Legends timelines have named newborn Jedi after him (Ben Solo and Ben Skywalker), and he's a far stronger duelist than many casual fans suspect.
Obi-Wan's accomplishments include:
- Defeating Anakin Skywalker
- Defeating Darth Maul
- Defeating General Grievous
- Being proclaimed the master of Soresu (Form 3's defensive saber style) by Mace Windu
"They are devious and deceitful and, most importantly, stupid."
"It's a wonder you don't get along with them, Dooku. You have so much in common." ―Dooku and Obi-Wan
7. Anakin Skywalker
Of course the dark side ultimately twists Anakin into Darth Vader, but even before his fall, the Chosen One served as one of the Order's strongest warriors. Easily capable of defeating the average Jedi Master, Anakin was denied Masterhood not from lack of ability, but lack of control. He draws power from both his tremendous Force potential and (unlike most Jedi of his time) willingness to channel his passions.
After dueling Obi-Wan on Mustafar, Anakin's loss of several limbs restricted his overall potential by dampening his connection to the Force; creator George Lucas has stated that without this limitation, Anakin had the capability to become twice as strong as the Emperor. In addition to his Jedi skills, Anakin is a stupendous mechanic and starpilot.
Anakin's (Jedi) feats include:
- Defeating Count Dooku
- Defeating Asajj Ventress
- Surviving battle after battle in the Clone Wars
"Well, when this doesn't go as planned—which it won't—I'll be ready."
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6. Count Dooku
I've got some explaining to do. Yes, Count Dooku is a Sith; in fact, we never even witness his time as a Jedi in the films. However, he served the light far longer than the dark, and shared many parallels with Anakin—a distaste for some of the Order's methods, an unusual sense of pride for a Jedi, etc.
If Anakin defeated Dooku (after Dooku became Darth Tyranus), why place Dooku before him? Dooku's physical abilities waned in his elder years; in his prime, he's one of very few people confirmed to have once outdueled Mace Windu. Whether as an aging Jedi or aged Sith, Dooku displays notable Force prowess and even more notable saber techniques, using the precise Form 2, Makashi, a style well-known for excelling in duels.
But if including Dooku still feels like cheating, sub in Qui-Gon (Dooku's apprentice who should be commended for his discovery of Force spirits) or whichever Jedi you'd like instead.
Dooku's feats include:
- Outdueling Mace Windu (as a Jedi)
- Outdueling Obi-Wan twice (as a Sith)
- Multiple times holding his own against Anakin and Obi-Wan simultaneously (as a Sith, seen in both Episode 3 and the Clone Wars show)
"Anger leads to hate and hate leads to power."
5. Mace Windu
Arguably the Republic's most proficient swordsmaster, Mace Windu's stern demeanor, unquestionable skills, and violet blade set him apart from other Jedi. Mace mastered the incredibly rare Force technique Shatterpoint, which can break durable objects with bare hands or learn weakpoints of events. Additionally, he created his own ferocious lightsaber style (Form 7, Vaapad) that channels and controls one's own darkness.
Mace's triumphs include:
- Beheading Jango Fett
- Defeating Sidious in a duel (there's debate on whether Sidious faked his defeat, but George Lucas stated it was genuine)
- Mastering Shatterpoint
- Inventing Vaapad
"I'm a prophet. I can see the future..."
"Sure you can. What do you see?"
—Mace and an unnamed thug
Considered the Order's strongest Force practitioner—and certainly one of its best swordsman—Yoda combated evil in the galaxy for hundreds of years. Ever-wise, Yoda's advanced age belied his nimble dueling using the agile Form 4, Ataru. Yoda survived Order 66, realized conquering the Emperor was another's destiny, went into exile on Dagobah and (years later) was one of very few Jedi to die peacefully when his years caught up to him.
Yoda's incredible skills rank him higher than almost any Jedi, but his self-admitted failure to help the Jedi to evolve something Luke would eventually correct) and his advanced age restrict his overall strength. That said, his prowess was such that Darth Sidious initially attempted to retreat rather than face the Jedi Master.
Yoda's victories include:
- Easily beating Asajj Ventress
- Forcing Count Dooku to flee in battle
- Fighting Darth Sidious to a draw
"Mysterious are the ways of the Force."
"Did you just make me stand on my head for two hours because I was annoying you?"
—Yoda and Luke
The famed protagonist of video game Knights of the Old Republic, set thousands of years before the films, Revan has a long and complicated history with the Force. Though he at times embraces the dark side, at the end of the day Revan belongs to the light.
Revan's knack for leading inspired many to join his causes, and as a Sith he established the Rule of Two that Darth Bane would later cement. Revan's criticism of the Jedi Council—who believed that the Jedi should stay out of the Mandalorian Wars and search for the deeper threat—parallels Anakin's later frustrations with the Jedi. Whether or not the Jedi agreed with Revan, he was often cited as the greatest warrior of his age, and is known for performing feats such as calling down meteors with the Force or controlling multiple lightsabers telekinetically.
Revan's accomplishments include:
- Defeating Mandalore the Ultimate
- Defeating Darth Malak
- Defeating Darth Bandon
Most depictions of Revan also showcase a grand sense of humor, seen below.
"The fact that you are so strong in the Force and have had such relatively little training could have terrible consequences. For you, and for everyone around you."
"You could warn me when I do something bad. Blink once for dark side, twice for light."
—Bastila and Revan
2. Jacen Solo
Like several entries on this list, Jacen would later fall to the dark side, but for far longer he acted as an exceptionally talented Jedi in Luke's rebuilt Jedi Order. The first son of Han and Leia, Jacen and his twin Jaina trained under Luke. Thanks to his mother, Jacen carried Anakin's vast Force potential, and unlike his sister (who focusedon piloting as much as Jedi...ing) devoted most of his time to saberwork or Force exploration.
He travels the galaxy on his own for a few years and develops several unique Force techniques that even Grand Master Skywalker didn't know. If you'd like to experience Jacen's transformation to Darth Caedus, I highly recommend the nine novel series Legacy of the Force.
Jacen's accomplishments include:
- Dueling Luke to a draw
- Helping end the Yuuzhan Vong war
- Temporarily achieving a state of oneness with the Force
- Defeating Kyle Katarn (albeit as Darth Caedus)
- Defeating Mara Jade (as Caedus)
As you may have noticed, Jacen shares many parallels with alternate-dimension Kylo Ren, but that's an article for another time.
"Colonel Solo, you are wasting valuable—"
"Thinking is not a waste of time."
—Espara and Jacen
1. Luke Skywalker
Unlike his film counterpart, in Legends, Luke successfully raised a new breed of Jedi. These mystics incorporated marriage, removed age restrictions, and all-around improved the Order. Many sources cited Luke as the strongest Jedi, the ultimate master of the Force, and he led the rebuilt Order as its Grand Master. Through Luke, we finally see the "twice as strong as the Emperor" Anakin once could have been.
Apprentices fall, allies die, but Luke forever served as the crux of the Order and the pinnacle of the Jedi.
Luke's triumphs include:
- Defeating Darth Vader
- Defeating Dark Lady Lumiya
- Defeating the Force monster Abeloth (multiple times)
- Mastering the Shatterpoint technique
- Achieving oneness with the Force (described in his case as "a maelstrom of luminous Force energy that poured from a calm center")
"Now go, and stop worrying, or I swear I'll come back as a Force ghost and bug you while you're on a date."
—Luke talking to his son Ben
Every time I reenter the Star Wars universe, I find myself resisting the urge to alter the placement of today's entries. You may disagree with some—and that's okay! My lifelong experiences with the franchise led to this ranking, but if yours guide you towards a different order, I'd love to hear your reasoning below. I should also mention that although several entries were dark-siders at some point, all were formidable as Jedi and most had repented by the end.
I'm glad to see the series has impacted as many fans as it has, hope the Legends timeline continues to see some support, and will see you at our next countdown for the galaxy far far away!
© 2017 Jeremy Gill
Rascal on September 05, 2018:
Revan and Obi Wan are my favorite. Revan in my opinion achieved true balance between light and dark while obi wan was the poster boy of the light
Jeremy Gill (author) from Louisiana on September 04, 2018:
Agreed, people are quick to judge, but many would probably have made the same choice Anakin did. Additionally, the Revenge of the Sith novel does a better job of explaining his motivations.
For instance, the reason he was upset over not being made a Jedi Master is because he wanted access to Master-only texts nestled deep within the Jedi archives. Anakin thought these might be able to help him find a way to save Padme.
The Force on March 14, 2018:
Ani was just legendary awesome. Let people say anything about his decisions but if they were at his place , they could have burnt the whole universe for their family. Family is everything to a human.
Hello on February 28, 2018:
REVAN IS THE BOSS