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Physical Condition

In this section we’ll go over how Krayt’s physical condition developed over his century as a Sith, and how this affected his power.

To start with, during Krayt’s imprisonment under the Vong, he was tortured and experimented on extensively, and was implanted with yorik coral seeds, which would plague him for the next one hundred years. Yorik coral seeds are living organisms which the Vong use to grow their organic spaceships. When implanted into one’s body, they act as parasites, devouring the host’s flesh from the inside, breeding, expanding their domain, attempting to reduce the host to a mindless Vong creature. They are almost incurable, and even the Force provides little help. They “drained much of his strength.” Krayt also states that he “should not have survived” what the Vong did to him and needed long years of stasis to heal.

“The Force abilities you manifested intrigued them so their shapers implanted you with coral seeds as an experiment.”

—Vergere

“yorik coral A form of coral found in the Yuuzhan Vong galaxy. The Yuuzhan Vong bioengineered the coral and formed it into living spaceships, including the massive worldships. Molten yorik coral also was used to fire plasma-like discharges. When the Praetorite Vong invaded the galaxy, they planned to use the dead world of Belkadan as a yorik coral breeding ground. Yorik coral aged like any other biological organism, and by the start of the invasion some worldships had begun to die.”

—The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia

“He began building a new Sith Order, but yorik coral implants drained much of his strength.”

—The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia

“Active coral seeds can infect any species, causing painful spikes to grow from the victim’s skin. Other mutations have been documented as well. The disease is nigh incurable, though it is possible that the Yuuzhan Vong will develop a cure someday. Even the Force provides little help. Those with the disease are exiled from their communities out of fear of transmitting the symptoms and mutations to others.”

—Legacy Era Campaign Guide

“I should not have survived what the Vong did to me -- yet I endured. I needed long years of stasis to allow my body to heal, but my mind remained open to my closest disciples.”

—Darth Krayt

“However, Darth Krayt is far older than anyone suspects, and he suffers from an insidious ailment that threatens to consume him. He's in dire need of powerful healing.”

—Legacy of the Force Preview 1

“Krayt seeks someone who can heal him of the Yuuzhan Vong infection which is slowly overtaking his body. But thus far his efforts to rid himself of the Vong parasites have failed.”

—Star Wars: Legacy #0.5

That’s not all, however. Decades later, Krayt would resurface from stasis in order to battle Abeloth with Luke Skywalker. The battle, while taking place on a plane of existence separate from the physical, took a toll on Luke Skywalker’s body nonetheless. He was left on the brink of death in a coma, with little brain activity. He lost part of his ribs and lungs, and had a fist-sized hole in his chest. He had also developed a terrible infection, indicated by yellow and green ichor saturating his chest wound. It’s noted (and shown) that Krayt sustained identical wounds during this battle, so we can conclude that he too was in a near-death state.

Jaina had heard death screams many times before, on battlefields from Anthus to Zelaba, and they had one thing in common: death screams always contained as much surprise as pain, as much anger and disbelief as sorrow. It was as though men meeting a violent end could never quite believe what was happening, that they had finally met a fighter who was better and luckier than they were. Or maybe it was death itself they were cursing, angry at how it preferred to cheat great warriors of their lives rather than take them in a fair fight. Jaina couldn't be sure of the feelings behind the scream, but she knew one thing for certain-a death scream was always raw and loud.

And that was the kind of scream she had just heard from the Rude Awakening's medbay, where Luke had strapped in his body before he went beyond shadows.

[...]

The Lake of Apparitions was neither warm nor cold, still nor roiling. It simply was, beyond time and sensation, beyond fear or desire or duty. It embodied surrender and attainment, death and immortality, and Luke had never felt more ready to slip below its dark surface and join his beloved Mara, to wrap himself in her liquid embrace and let the Depths of Eternity wash away the anguish of his wounds, the ache of his lonely despair.

But something would not let him sink.

He lay on the water for a year or a minute, hurt and exhausted, watching Abeloth's pale form vanish.

[...]

And still Luke did not sink. He was too weak to rise, and he could feel nothing of himself except the aching void Abeloth had torn in his chest. It occurred to him that he might well be dying, and it was not a thought that brought him any fear. Even if his life had not been as long as Yoda's, it had been a good one filled with close friends and much-loved family. He had been of some small service, at least, to his fellow sentient beings. And in the new Jedi Order, he had rekindled a light that had once gone out in the galaxy. He had few regrets for anything he had done, and if the time had come to let another Jedi carry the torch, he was ready.

"Not yet, Skywalker."

The voice was warm and familiar, and it came from beside Luke. He turned to find Mara's face breaking the surface of the water. Then he saw a hand gripping the back of his biceps and realized that she was floating beneath him, preventing him from sinking.

"Mara, it's okay," Luke said. "I'm ready. I want to be with you."

"Too bad." He felt his upper body rising as she tried to push him upward. "I don't want to be with you-not here, not yet."

"What?" Luke asked, feeling more confused than resentful. "Mara, I'm wounded… badly. Abeloth took something out of me."

"She wounded him, too." Mara's other hand rose out of the water and pointed past Luke's head, toward the tattooed Sith who had helped Luke kill Abeloth. The stranger was on his feet, limping toward the far shore with both hands clutched to his chest. "If he can do it, so can you."

Luke forced himself to sit upright. The effort made his head spin and his whole being ache, but he refused to collapse back into the water. He had no idea of the Sith's true identity, but it did not seem wise to let him return to the physical galaxy alone.

"That's ridiculous. Their injuries may be different." This voice came from Luke's other side, sinister and cajoling...and also familiar. "Besides, Sith are stronger. They have the dark side."

[...]

The tattooed man stopped and whirled, and Luke found himself preparing to dodge a fork of Force lightning. But the stranger was in no better shape to fight than Luke. He had a gaping wound in his chest, just like Luke, and Luke could see that his entire form was shuddering. Instead of attacking, the Sith just stood staring at them, one eye shining yellow and the other an empty socket, his right arm a useless ghost of a limb.

[...]

Ben ignored the sharpness of her tone and continued on toward the medbay. He could tell by the heavy odor of antiseptic and bacta salve that his father was in bad shape. He reached out in the Force, trying to find some hint of his father's condition, and felt the lukewarm presence of a non-sentient being-or a Jedi so deep in a healing trance that he appeared to be in a coma.

Ben took a calming breath, then stepped through the hatch into a ten-bunk medical bay. As a Void Jumper assault vessel, the pinnace was outfitted for both combat and the aftereffects. His father lay secured in a bunk along the cabin's back wall, with a breathing tube down his throat and half a dozen IV catheters secured to his arms, neck, and legs. A huge bandage covered the right side of his chest, and while his skin was not dry or flaky, it had turned the color of ash. Whatever Jaina was thinking about Vestara, she was telling the truth about Ben's father. Luke Skywalker was close to death.

[...]

"I want to see the other patient first." Ben hooked the mask's retainer loops over his ears, then asked, "What's his condition?"

"Grave," the droid replied. "Unexplained coma, unclassified rapid-onset infection, and massive chest trauma-due to loss of second thoracic rib and superior lobe of the right lung."

Ben frowned. "Trauma due to the loss of a rib and a lung lobe?" he asked. "Isn't the loss of parts usually the result of trauma, not the cause?"

The droid fixed its beady photoreceptors on Ben. "Are you a physician, soldier?"

"I'm trained in field medicine," Ben replied.

"And that qualifies you to question an EmDee's diagnosis?"

"Not at all," Ben said. He was unaccustomed to dealing with this kind of droid, but he knew enough about elite-force protocol to realize he would learn nothing by backing down. "But I am qualified to know when something doesn't make sense."

"I didn't say the injury made sense." The droid stepped back, giving Ben a clear path to his father's side. "The cause of the injury appears to be the spontaneous ejection of the superior lobe. I found nothing to suggest the primary cause."

"No shrapnel wounds or internal burns?" Ben asked.

"Had I found either, I wouldn't have said 'spontaneous ejection.'" The droid stepped aside. "You may speak to the patient, but keep it short. You are in need of attention, too."

Ben went over to the bunk and grew even more alarmed. Even with the tape over the lids, it was clear that his father's eyes were sunken-in fact, the sockets looked empty. And his chest bandage was stained with circles of yellow and green ichor, which suggested an infection far nastier than any normal complication. Most worrisome of all, however, was the fist-sized basin in the center of the bandage. It looked like his father had taken a bolt from a blaster cannon, and Ben had trouble understanding what could have happened beyond shadows to cause such an injury to a physical body. He grasped the curled fingers of his father's hand, at the same time reaching out to him in the Force.

[...]

"Hey, Dad, thanks for coming after us," Ben said. It was well established that many coma patients could hear someone speaking, so Ben tried to keep the fear out of his voice. "I don't know what happened beyond shadows, but it probably saved us. Vestara and…”Suddenly his father's hand clamped down so hard Ben thought his fingers might break.

"Dad?"

His father's grasp weakened, but it did not go entirely slack.

"Dad, are you awake?

"The Emdee droid stepped to the foot of the bunk and plugged into the data socket

."I'm sorry, soldier. The patient's brain activity is still minimal."

"He squeezed my hand," Ben said. "In fact, he's still squeezing it."

"It's just motor response," the droid said. "With this level of brain inactivity-"

"I don't care what your scanner says," Ben interrupted. "This man is a Jedi Grand Master. He has capabilities you can't begin to understand."

[...]

He was interrupted by a horrible gagging noise from the bunk beside him, and his father's grasp grew so tight that Ben's knuckles popped. He looked down to see his father's eyelids fluttering and his mouth moving as he tried to speak around the breathing tube.

"He's awake!"

Ben looked for the EmDee droid and found him racing forward, interface arm already reaching for the bunk's data socket. His father made another gagging sound, and this time it grew apparent that he was trying to say a single word. The initial sounds were too wet and guttural to make out, but the final syllable sounded like ih. Ben leaned over the bunk and said, "Hold on, Dad. The EmDee will take the breathing tube out in a second, and then you can talk all day."

"That wouldn't be possible with bruised vocal cords, even if he were returning to consciousness." Leaving his interface arm in the data socket, the droid's head rotated to face Ben. "The brain activity is still minimal. I'm afraid he was just trying to swallow." "Nonsense-watch this," Ben said, not looking away from his father. "Vestara."

Again, his father tightened his grasp and made a horrible gagging sound.

[...]

Luke deactivated the medical monitors so they wouldn't alert an attendant, then removed the IV catheters from his arm. Slowly and with great effort, he got out of bed and dressed in a clean robe he found folded in a locker near his bed. His entire body ached with fever, and his atrophied legs trembled with weakness. But the greatest anguish was in his chest, where he could still feel Abeloth's balled tentacle-an empty sick heat that he thought might stay with him for the rest of his life.

[...]

"I think you're right," Luke said. He could still feel her cold tentacle writhing in the emptiness of his chest wound, a phantom memory reminding him that an entity of the Force could never be truly killed-that in a hundred years, or a hundred thousand years, she would grow strong enough to return. "We're going to need to find a way to keep tabs on her. She may not return in our lifetime, but the Jedi Order will need to be ready."

—Fate of the Jedi: Apocalypse

Her gaze dropped to Luke’s chest, where his robe covered a mysterious, slow-to-heal wound. He had received it the year before from an ancient being named Abeloth, who seemed to be a chaos-bringing agent of the Force itself. Luke had ultimately triumphed, but the fight had cost him a rib and part of a lung.

“I’m fine. You know the wound only bothers me when I have a Force vision.” Luke had to work to keep a civil tone, for the Masters’ concern over his health had grown tiresome over the last few months. He was the Grand Master, after all, and they insisted on coddling him.

[...]

After a few dozen steps, a golden radiance began to light the surrounding area. He looked down and discovered that his entire body had begun to glow—except where Abeloth had reached into his chest. There, Luke had a dark hole the size of his fist.

—Crucible

Fast forward 86 years. Krayt has survived with his coral seeds, artificially extended life span and injuries for all these years thanks to healing techniques and stasis, but his condition has become critical. After a brief fight with four Imperial Knights, Krayt was “badly fatigued” and confided in Wyyrlok that his body is failing. He gives himself another decade or two before the coral seeds overcome him, and he also notes that he is going to stay out of stasis in order to keep up appearances. This would no doubt exasperate his condition further.

https://imgur.com/a/LzTwm

“My body fails me, Wyyrlok…”

“You’ve overextended yourself, my Lord. Perhaps a healing trance… or back into stasis…?”“

Perhaps a healing meditation, but I cannot go back into stasis. I am Emperor now and I must be seen -- and seen as strong.”

[...]

“How long have I fought this thing which threatens to take me over and make me not myself? How much longer can I keep it at bay. A decade or two perhaps… not more.”

—Darth Krayt and Darth Wyyrlok

“The effort to bring down Fel’s Empire, however, left him badly fatigued, and he was forced to reveal to his second-in-command, Darth Wyyrlok, that his Yuuzhan-Vong enhanced body was failing."

—The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia

Andeddu notes that Krayt is being “consumed,” and Krayt even compares the coral seeds to the orbalisk parasites which had been affixed to Darth Bane, which “feed” on his body.

“The heretic comes for the same reason it came last time. Its body is failing. It fears that which is consuming it.

—Darth Andeddu

“Lord Bane, you mastered the parasites -- the orbalisks -- that attacked you… that fed on your body as these Yuuzhan Vong life forms feed on mine. How?”

—Darth Krayt

To understand how close Krayt was to being overtaken, and how wrecked his body was, we need only compare his body while he has it under control to how it looks when his control fails; he grows massive spikes out of all areas of his body and is halfway to becoming a Vongspawn.

https://imgur.com/a/qxHzg

Now fast forward 7 years, where Krayt has spent much less time in stasis than usual. Despite consulting all the knowledge Korriban has to offer, the holocron of XoXaan and a Jedi Healer, Wyyrlok III is unable to find any way of curing Krayt. He is described as being “consumed” and steadily “deteriorating,” and has lived far beyond his normal life span. His body is described as “disintegrating” and “ravaged.”

“No, it is for Lord Krayt that I fear. My Lord is dying. He is being consumed. Nothing in the Sith lore helps, including the ancient knowledge of XoXaan. The skills of the Jedi Healer, Hosk, have proven inadequate.”

—Darth Wyyrlok

"Darth Krayt and Darth Wyyrlok continued to delve into the ancient Sith lore, hoping to find a cure for his condition. However, not even the efforts of the Jedi healer Hosk Trey’lis could stop the steady deterioration of his body.”

—The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia

“As Darth Krayt’s health grew steadily worse, Wyyrlok explored the lore of Xoxaan, looking for clues to help combat the Sith Lord’s failing condition. Wyyrlok also brought in the Jedi healer Hosk Trey’lis, but nothing helped.”

—The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia

“An ancient Sith Lord noted for her skills as a healer.

[...]

"After establishing his new Sith Order, Darth Krayt and his chief lieutenant, Darth Wyyrlok, continued to delve into XoXaan’s teachings in an unsuccessful attempt to heal the slow deterioration of Darth Krayt’s body.”

—The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia

“However, his body suffers the effects of having lived far beyond its natural lifespan. The Yuuzhan Vong implants used to extend his life begin to consume him. Furthermore, healing trances and Force healing become less effect. Darth Krayt knows that his time is limited unless a new solution is found.”

—Legacy Era Campaign Guide

“In the year 137 after the Battle of Yavin, Darth Krayt could no longer ignore the deterioration of his ancient body.”

[...]

“Krayt found his kingdom disintegrating along with his body.”

—Star Wars Insider #113

“Emperor Darth Krayt looks on, determined to turn the last Skywalker to the dark side, as Cade’s unique healing abilities are the only cure for the Yuuzhan Vong affliction that ravages Krayt’s body.”

—Star Wars: Legacy #19

Krayt consults Cade Skywalker in an attempt to cure himself. Cade’s healing powers are so potent that he could bring people back from the brink of death, and casually heal himself of a lethal dose of poison that had been pumped into his body for a whole day. In fact, Cade was even able to cure two people at once who had been implanted with modified, rapid-growing coral seeds which were on the verge of killing them.

"After losing his father, Kol Skywalker, Cade uses an extraordinary healing power that taps into the dark side of the Force to save his dying Master, Wolf Sazen."

―Star Wars: Legacy Campaign Guide

“He brought me back, Shado, from the very edge of life and death.”

―Wolf Sazen

"You brought your own master back from the very threshold of death…”

―Luke Skywalker

“Interesting. Despite a full day of injections, your body keeps purging itself of the Ixetal Cilona.”

“Yeah, babe, got this crazy body chemistry thing going. Or maybe you’re just getting inferior product. You really need to know your supplier. Could hook you up with some quality death stick merchants.”

“I supply them. No, you use the Force to purge yourself, bending it to your will… like a Sith.”

―Darth Maladi and Cade Skywalker

“I have heard of your healing abilities. I understand you can bring the injured back from the dead. You can even purge yourself of a lethal dose of Ixetal Cilona.”

―Darth Krayt

“Darth Maladi implanted you both with latent Yuuzhan Vong coral seeds. Maladi’s genius is responsible for the mutation and sabotage of the Ossus project. Her knowledge of Vong bio-forms is profound. She had melded it with her understanding of the dark side of the Force. Fed dark energy, the seeds grow at an accelerated rate. The pain is considerably greater than normal. Their deaths… are imminent, Cade Skywalker. Nothing in the galaxy can save them… unless the rumors about you are, in fact, true.”

―Darth Krayt

“The term “Vongspawn” started as a curse word, but after the Yuuzhan Vong war it became a derisive term referring to those unfortunate individuals infected by Sith-sabotaged Yuuzhan Vong coral seeds. Dormant sabotaged seeds must be activated by a Sith using the dark side of the Force. Active coral seeds can infect any species, causing painful spikes to grow from the victim’s skin. Other mutations have been documented as well. The disease is nigh incurable, though it is possible that the Yuuzhan Vong will develop a cure someday. Even the Force provides little help. Those with the disease are exiled from their communities out of fear of transmitting the symptoms and mutations to others.”

—Legacy Era Campaign Guide

“You’re insane! I’ve never healed two people at once!”

―Cade Skywalker

“It is done. Your friends are healed.”

―Darth Krayt

https://imgur.com/a/JGzH6

So, with his immense healing powers, how does Cade react when he looks at Krayt’s body? He tells him that the red lines he usually see’s in a body when he is healing it, inside Krayt, are too numerous and too jumbled up. Further evidence of Krayt’s awful condition.

“The growths caused by the coral seeds the Vong implanted in me continue to grow. They threaten to consume me. In order to realize my vision… I need healing.”

“I can’t. When I heal, it’s like I’m seeing inside someone. I see these red lines. They guide me. In you -- there are too many -- and they’re all jumbled together. I can’t see how to separate them… yet.”

—Darth Krayt and Cade Skywalker

Once Cade masters Shatterpoint, he can see Krayt’s condition in great detail. He notes that the coral seeds are “gnawing” and “clawing” at his guts, that they are trying to take him over, and that their duel is “costing” him.

“Enough about me. Let’s talk about you. You and my Dad opened my eyes to my abilities. I see real clear now. I can see how sick and twisted up your insides are. I can see what fighting me is costing you. Those Vong… things in your innards. Nasty little critters want to take you over real bad. What do they feel like, huh? Something gnawing your guts? Clawing at you? Tell me - do the other Sith know how sick you really are? How weak? What would they do if they knew?”

—Cade Skywalker

After fighting Cade, Krayt is left badly weakened and is forced to return to stasis.

“Cade’s escape has left the Emperor weakened, and his regime shaken.

Darth Wyyrlok, seeing the deterioration of his Master, has decided to seek another way to heal the Emperor...”

—Star Wars: Legacy #27

“Lord Krayt!”

“Get me to the stasis chamber. The battle with Skywalker has cost me.”

—Darth Krayt and Darth Wyyrlok

Later, during Vector, Krayt notes that his time is running out, and soon he will be either overtaken or killed by the seeds. Karness Muur states that he is inhabiting an “infected and failing husk” of a body, and that the seeds are “seeking to expand their domain, to consume his flesh.”

“Wyyrlok knows how these biots threaten to take over his Master’s body and leave him a mindless shell. He probed deep into his collection of ancient books of Sith Lore, seeking an answer to Krayt’s affliction in the wisdom of the past.”

—Star Wars: Legacy #27

“My time is running out, Lord Wyyrlok. I can feel it. My… control of the coral seeds the Yuuzhan Vong planted within me wanes. Soon I will be a mindless thing. Or a corpse.”

—Darth Krayt

“Together we will dominate the galaxy as you have not been able to do alone in that infected and failing husk you call a body.”

[...]

“Ye-es, yes. I sense the alien seeds within you, seeking to expand their domain, to consume your flesh. Together we must focus.”

—Karness Muur

So, by all available evidence, Krayt’s body is in a total state of disarray by this point. He’s on death’s door, and even short skirmishes can tax him greatly. His powers, then, would logically skyrocket if only he could be free of these parasites and heal his ravaged, 185 year old body which has been brought to the brink of death on two occasions.

Enter Reborn Krayt. After mastering Dark Transfer, Dark Healing and Shatterpoint, Krayt is able to overcome death, cure himself of the coral seeds, and restore his body to peak condition.

“Darth Krayt, leader of the One Sith, has been reborn from his near death at the hands of Darth Wyyrlok; he has sent ripples through the Force so that all Sith know he is alive and well.”

—Star Wars: Legacy—War #1

“I have been through death and conquered it. I have returned with my power multiplied. The Dark Side of the Force lives and manifests itself through me!”

—Darth Krayt

So powerful were his healing abilities now, he was able to grow back entire limbs, evidenced by the fact his previously severed arm, which had been replaced with a Vong appendage, had returned - fully healed and human.

https://imgur.com/a/5jcNQ

If Krayt can regrow entire limbs and heal his body from death, then it should be apparent that his body has never been in greater health - so when he says that his powers have “multiplied,” it’s evident that he should be taken at his word. Therefore, Reborn Krayt should be far more powerful than his Legacy incarnation, and also superior to his Apocalypse incarnation, as at those times his body had been ravaged by coral seeds, an unnaturally extended lifespan and near-fatal injuries.

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Sweet, always thought the Dragon Priests were cool, so nice to see they live up to that! Is there any info on the masks and what they grant? Aside from in-game descriptions?

Not specifically, but with some inference: they are some of the most powerful artifacts not created by gods. They are some of the few enchanted items with an excess of two enchantments (the limit for humans is two, it seems to be higher for dragons). And their primary function would be to aid the dragon priest in battle, who are already powerful mages. They may even have personalised spells to aid the specific priest.