Star Wars Inside Intel: The Ascendant
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In the spirit of Halloween season, StarWars.com examines this creepy cult that looked to replicate the Force through technological terrors!
Star Wars Inside Intel is a StarWars.com feature where Lucasfilm’s Emily Shkoukani, whose job is to know as much about a galaxy far, far away as possible, explores obscure facts about Star Wars lore and continuity. In this creepy installment for Halloween season, Emily takes a look at a mysterious cult of Force worshippers…
First mentioned in Marvel’s Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #15 in the story “War of the Bounty Hunters: Party Favors,” the Ascendant was a Force cult existing long before the Skywalker Saga, sometime during the Sith’s reign. Known for their wicked technology, the Ascendant were eventually eliminated by Sith and Jedi alike, who feared the devices conjured by the cult.
There are two things that define the Ascendant: technology and the occult. The Ascendant were not Force users but Force fanatics, obsessed with replicating the effects of the dark side in similar ways to how the Sith used it, and beyond. To do this, the Ascendant used clever tricks, technology, dark sciences, and rituals to achieve this mimicry of the Force.
One such technology was the thought dowser, a device capable of amplifying the wielder’s thoughts in order to persuade another being to do whatever they wanted. Using a special material to amplify the user’s thoughts, the thought dowser was effective and, although the Sith were generally wary of the Ascendant, they were known to use this type of technology to aid their apprentices in honing their innate abilities….
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