Whether you’re a cosplayer looking to learn more about lightsaber combat, or just a fan of Star Wars wondering what the different forms are, you’ll want to read on. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at the seven Lightsaber Combat Forms and identify which famous Jedi used each one. Let’s get started!
Form I: Shii-Cho
Lightsaber combat Form I, also known as Shii-Cho, is the most basic and oldest of the 7 lightsaber combat forms. It was created by the Jedi Order and is characterized by wide, sweeping movements. The goal of Shii-Cho is to disarm an opponent without the causing serious injury.
When attacking, practitioners of Shii-Cho strike with large, powerful swings that are difficult for an opponent to defend against. However, due to its reliance on brute force, Shii-Cho is less effective against faster and more agile styles such as Form III: Soresu. Nevertheless, it remains a popular choice among Padawans and Knights alike.
Form II: Makashi
Lightsaber combat Form II, also known as Makashi, is a lightsaber combat style that emphasizes lightsaber-to-lightsaber combat. It was created by the Jedi Order and relies on precision and agility, and is often considered to be the most elegant of the lightsaber combat forms. Count Dooku and Master Ki-Adi-Mundi were masters of Form II.
One of the distinctive features of Makashi is the use of a single lightsaber, as opposed to the double-bladed lightsabers used by some other styles. The Makashi style was once the dominant of the 7 lightsaber combat forms, and requires a degree of customization and personalization by each practitioner. It remains an impressive sight to behold, and many Jedi continue to practice it today.
Form III: Soresu
Lightsaber combat Form III, also known as Soresu, is the most defensive style of the 7 lightsaber combat forms. It was developed by the Jedi Order to counter the more aggressive tactics of their enemies. The goal of Soresu is to defend against opposing attacks while using the least amount of energy possible, and, in the process, frustrate and exhaust they opponent. To accomplish this, practitioners rely on quick parries and excellent footwork to deflect incoming attacks.
In addition, they maintain a tight defense, using their lightsaber to guard their entire body. This makes it difficult for opponents to find an opening in their defenses. Obi-Wan Kenobi was a master of Form III. Master Depa Billaba had also mastered it and passed it on to her students, including Caleb Dume (aka Kanan Jarrus)
Form IV: Ataru
Lightsaber combat Form IV, also known as Ataru, is an offensive style of lightsaber combat that emphasizes speed and acrobatic attacks. Almost a complete opposite of Form III, Form IV practitioners seek to maintain a constant offensive tempo, overwhelming their opponents with a flurry of quick and powerful strikes, and attempt to end the conflict as quickly as possible. Master Yoda was a notable practitioner of Form IV.
While lightsaber combat Form IV is an offensive style, it is not without its defensive elements. In order to maintain a relentless offense, Ataru practitioners must be able to quickly recover from missed or blocked attacks. As a result, lightsaber combat Form IV practitioners make extensive use of footwork and acrobatics to stay on the offensive while avoiding enemy counterstrikes. Anakin Skywalker adapted Form IV for defense against heavy blaster fire from droids during the Clone Wars.
Form V: Shien & Djem So
Lightsaber combat Form V, also known as Shien or Djem So, is a lightsaber combat style that emphasizes defenses stances with powerful offensive moves. It is considered to be the most physically demanding lightsaber form. The style is often used to deflect blaster bolts back at enemies, and its techniques can be used to disarm opponents or strike them with great force.
Shien and Djem So is considered one of the most difficult lightsaber forms to master, but those who do can be extremely dangerous opponents. Ahsoka Tano was an adept practitioner of Form V, utilizing the reverse grip that became popular with this style. While Form V may not be the most elegant of the 7 lightsaber combat forms, it is certainly one of the most effective.
Form VI: Niman
Lightsaber combat Form VI, also known as Niman, is a style that emphasizes integrative lightsaber techniques drawn from all previous lightsaber Forms. Niman practitioners seek to achieve a balance between offense and defense, using their lightsabers in a more versatile way than practitioners of other forms.
In addition to lightsaber combat, Niman practitioners must also be proficient in the Force, as the Force is often used to enhance lightsaber techniques. Darth Maul employed the Niman style against Kenobi and Qui-Gon Jinn on Naboo. As a result, those who have mastered Niman are considered to be among the most dangerous opponents in combat.
Form VII: Juyo (or Vaapad)
Lightsaber combat Form VII, also known as Juyo or Vaapad, is a lightsaber combat style that emphasizes precision, speed, and power. The style is often associated with the dark side of the Force, as it requires its practitioners to channel their emotions and aggression into their lightsaber techniques. However, lightsaber combat Form VII can be used for both light and dark side purposes.
The style is difficult to master, but those who have mastered it, like Master Mace Windu, are considered to be among the deadliest lightsaber duelists in the galaxy. While lightsaber combat Form VII is dangerous in the hands of someone who lacks control, in the hands of a skilled practitioner, it is a powerful tool for protecting the Jedi Order and keeping peace and order in the galaxy.
There you have it — the seven main forms of lightsaber combat. I hope this article has left you better informed and will help with your dueling. Read our last article about lightsaber types to compliment this one, and always check out our Ultimate Saber Guide for even more lightsaber and Star Wars knowledge.