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Darth Vader vs Starkiller in depth analyisis

So hopefully this will be a quick blog, I have worked hard on this comments are welcome, but it is unlikely you will receive a response. I am going to be addressing the misconceptions surrounding the fight of Starkiller (clone) vs Vader


I am going to be articulating my points in the most efficient way possible. SK will be used meaning "Starkiller" but specifically since this fight addresses the Vader Vs SK clone fight. As such I will refer to Starkiller as SK for most if not all of the thread, with that said enjoy the most comprehensive analysis of Vader vs SK that exists on the Internet.

Section 1: Fight analysis

Within this segment of the blog, I will be examining the text specifically and only the text, we will ascertain what this means and how it relates to Marek or Vader and we will be using it as the primary source of argumentation.

Section 2: Alternative media and relevance to canon

In this segment I will be explaining the exact factual evidence that exists in other media and how that relates to the precedents I have set in the previous sections.

Without further ado I present to you Starkiller vs Vader

Fight Analysis: Vader has the upper hand?

"Why me?" he asked the silent cloning tower. "Search your feelings," Vader said, stepping into view at the very top of the tower, lightsaber held tightly in his right hand. "The answer lies within you." Starkiller stared up at his former Master. What did he have that none of the other clones did? He remembered: "How long this time?" "Thirteen days. Impressive. " And he remembered: "The Force gives me all I need." "The Force?" "The dark side. I mean." Slowly a dark understanding began to form. All the duels, all the tests, all the torturous mind games, had been to ensure his survival against every opponent - bar one. His Master. In a sense, they were still playing out the first time they had faced each other in combat. He didn't remember the early days of his apprenticeship, when the memories of his parents had been strong and the young boy he had once been resisted Vader's absolute authority, but he was sure the battle had been even then, psychological. The battle would never cease until one of them won.Was this what it was like to be a Sith? Forever at war with one's own Master? "Your training made me strong enough to escape you," he said, "not obey you. " "Yet here you are." Darth Vader's words fell on him like heavy weights. "My most deadly creation." "You lie!" Starkiller jumped up to the next platform, passion stirring him to action.

Anyone who has even a decent understanding of Star Wars knows what this means, the line in the Sith code "Through passion I gain strength" Starkiller is clearly enraged at this point after being subjected to Vader's masterful use of Dun Moch. Even if he is not calling on the Force to amplify his rage at this point he is still in the sith mindset, he is still passionate about his cause he is going all out to kill Vader to get to Juno, lets continue...

"You never wanted this. You can't have. Once Juno has been rescued, your facility will be destroyed. You with it, if there's any justice." "There is no justice, " said Darth Vader, watching him ascend. "Only power." Vader made no move to defend himself when Starkiller reached the very top of the cloning tower. Determined to prove him wrong, Starkiller didn't waste time announcing his intentions. He just lunged. Only at the very last moment did Vader raise his blade to block the blow, and even then the move seemed almost casual, disinterested. Starkiller struck again, with both lightsabers. Vader blocked one blade and used telekinesis to throw the other off target. The platform buckled and twisted, sending Starkiller flying.

So not only is this an excellent cross examination of Vader and Starkiller showing their differing psychologies, but it perfectly demonstrates Vader's casual demeanor during the early part of this fight, no matter what camp you believe. the fact that Vader takes his time is a large indicator that this is either a test or Vader is holding back. Furthermore the text implies not only that its a test, but that this is easy for Vader to defend against...

He rolled and leapt, and came up swinging. Covered in blood - the blood of his fellow clones - and knowing Juno was close, he fought his former Master with single-minded focus. Vader was still testing him; he sensed that more and more keenly, with every passing moment, but to what purpose he still couldn't tell. Vader himself fought more cautiously than he had on the Death Star, the last time they had dueled in earnest. His armor seemed to have improved, too; it was less vulnerable to lightning than it had been just days before.Vader threw wrecked platforms and cloning rubes at him, while he scored three slashes to the Dark Lord's cape in return.

Now, we have a point that many think is worthy of note, Starkiller manages to get a few tags on Vader's cape, before I explain why this doesn't mean he is winning, allow me to say this, we also get to see a bit of Anakin in Vader the tinkerer whom has improved his armor to be more invulnerable to Galen's lightning, and we also see that Vader clearly is prepared to fight Galen Marek but as we will see that advantage goes both ways. Now that important list of details aside, lets analyze if tagging Vader's Armorweave cape is really a big deal...

No Caption Provided

If an opponent like Sha Koon can pierce the guard of Vader and land a small hit on his cape, how is what Starkiller did proof he is winning the fight? Especially considering he never actually tags Vader anywhere but the cape, Vader is defending himself perfectly and Starkiller is able to get a few superficial basic hits in on Vader's cape. One can cite the idea that Vader improved vastly from this showing by TFU 2 which is true, but his core technique even if his application was different was at the very least incredibly similar if not completely the same. Though Vader modified his armor and improved, it doesn't change the fact that Vader has been tagged full on by a lesser force wielder whom at that time was comparable to him. This is not a sign of superiority on SK's part its not a sign of anything, in fact its made even less impressive when one takes into account the idea that Vader is holding back or testing, which so far has not been disproven, lines from the text even insinuate as much. Not only this but the lines I underlined show that Galen is trying to kill Vader and Vader is not trying to kill Galen...

They circled the top of the cloning tower, striking and assessing, then striking again. Starkiller swore that he would not give in to anger or frustration. If that was what Darth Vader wanted, he wasn't going to get it. The only emotion he would give in to was love. Finally, Starkiller saw an opportunity. They were exchanging rapid blows along the edge of the buckled platform, blades swinging so fast they were visible only as blurs. Vader's defenses were impenetrable; his lightsaber seemed to arrive a split second before Starkiller's, every time. He may have defeated Vader before, but Vader had learned from that mistake.

So again what does this tell us? Vader's blade is faster than Starkiller, how do we know this? Starkiller himself admits as much. Vader is on top of his opponent here, Starkiller notes his defenses are impenetrable. The argument here to say that Vader is losing is clearly not paying attention to what Galen himself is doing, hes struggling to penetrate Vader's defenses. We also get an interesting line here Vader learns from his mistake on the Death-star. Once again providing credence to the massive growth Vader receives from now until ANH, ESB, and ROTJ.

But the same was true in reverse. And when Vader forced Starkiller onto his back foot and raised his lightsaber to strike him down, Starkiller fired a lightning blast into the side of Vader's armor that was so concentrated, even the new insulation couldn't absorb it. The Dark Lord stiffened, betrayed by his extensive prosthetics. The distraction lasted only a moment, but it was enough. Starkiller knocked his blade out of the way and moved in to strike. Juno lying limp in his arms. The vision struck him as powerfully as a physical blow. When he tried to push it aside, it returned with even more power. Juno - dead.He reeled in shock. Was this what would happen if he killed Vader? He had no choice but to believe so. But if he didn't kill Vader, how would he ever get to her? The Dark Lord took advantage of his momentary confusion. He delivered a telekinetic shove that threw Starkiller backward off the platform and down to the lower levels of the ruined cloning tower.

So interesting line here, the implication obviously being that Vader has the skill or power to strike Starkiller down, until Galen shoots him with lightning that Vader is weak against. Clearly not a problem in Vader's prime because by ROTJ he can walk through even more powerful lightning. We also see it is only through lightning that starkiller is able to gain any kind of advantage. Only through slowing Vader who is "betrayed by his extensive prosthetics" is he able to move in for a blow but again what would this accomplish? We have seen from Vader's fight with Galen Marek who is comparable if slightly less powerful that even if you hit Vader wherever he still keeps going. In the force unleashed 1 Galen lands a series of hits on Vader causing him to fall back. When Galen finally manages to hit Vader in the helmet, it simply takes the helmet off not killing Vader. So even if Starkiller didn't get this sudden convenient vision of Juno lying dead (perhaps Vader's TP?, even if not still worth mentioning) he wouldn't win the fight. He needed to use a method that Vader is specifically weak against, not only this but the distraction he employs only lasts him a moment, so no Vader is not easily weakened by just any lightning especially considering how powerful SK's lightning is. We also do get confirmation if his dumbfounded face didn't already provide enough evidence that Vader does take advantage of the distraction he has with the Juno vision to penetrate his force barrier. So far, distraction included and everything taken into account, Vader has the advantage in round one.

The blow and the fall had the welcome effect of clearing his mind. He turned in midair and landed on his feet. An instant later he was leaping upward again, his face a mask of determination. Whatever happened to Juno, he saw no choice but to confront Darth Vader. The Dark Lord had killed his father, betrayed him at least once, and would kill Juno the very second she was of no more use to him. Their time of reckoning was long overdue. The attainment of his true mastery of the Force - the destiny Darth Vader so often threatened him with - could only come one way. He saw that now. His final test was to kill Vader himself. When he reached the top level, Vader was disappearing behind the doors of another turbolift. Starkiller ripped them open, but the cab had already begun to ascend. He had no intention of waiting for it to return. He braced himself on the inside of the shaft, and jumped. One powerful leap saw him rising almost as fast as the cab. He reached telekinetically for its underside, and caught it. When the cab started to slow, he approached close enough to physically hold on to the underside, and raised one lightsaber to cut his way through. The cab jerked to a halt. Vader was already gone by the time Starkiller emerged through a circular hole in the floor.

Not much to note here pertaining to the fight, but we do get the added line that falling had cleared his mind, so he is going after Vader correctly, no emotional instability argument can be made considering the blatantness of the text.

Outside the cab wasn't another cloning tower. A short ramp led up to the roof of the spire itself, currently out of sight. Starkiller emerged from the cab, a tightness in his chest telling him that Juno was very close now. Very close indeed. She was exactly where he had last seen her.It was raining. The dome had been breached. All around him, the fight between the Rebels and Imperials waged on. Wrecked starfighters tumbled from the sky in flames. Debris gushed out of wounded frigates. A listing Star Destroyer vented air and bodies in huge quantities. Across the facility, dozens of dark columns of smoke formed a thick veil of carbonized ash, choking the air. A constant high-frequency pulsation of energy weapons came from all around him, punctuated by the occasional bass explosion. It was impossible to tell who was winning.

So another short passage detailing Starkiller's thoughts as he enters the spire rooftop. He is distraught knowing Juno is close but he is still somewhat calm, if anything an implication for his determination could be made.

Wary of an ambush, Starkiller walked up the ramp. As he did so, Darth Vader came into view. The Dark Lord stood with his lightsaber extinguished in the center of the roof. Behind him, partially obscured by their lord, were four stormtroopers with weapons held at the ready. "Get out of my way," he said. "Your memories betray you," Darth Vader said. "They make me who I am." "You must turn your back on them in order to become who you will be." Starkiller stopped in his tracks. Was that why Darth Vader burdened him with everything the original Starkiller had been - to demonstrate his strength and commitment by dismissing it, his former self with it? Or was there still some other motive that he couldn't discern? Of only one thing was he certain. He wouldn't turn his back on Juno for any incentive. "Never," he said. "Then she will die." Darth Vader stepped aside, revealing Juno in shackles. He gestured, and the four stormtroopers surrounding her raised their weapons and fired as one.When Darth Vader walked onto the roof, the stormtroopers stood to immediate attention. Juno straightened, too, but not out of respect. She didn't know what was coming, but she swore she would be ready for it. The strange sounds coming from below - the screams and clash of lightsabers - had encouraged her to hope that it would be Starkiller who came to her first, but that was dashed now. If he was dead, then Vader would surely have no reason to keep her alive. Her guards' comlinks chattered too faintly for her to make out the words. Orders, she assumed, from the Dark Lord. They nodded and took new positions, two on either side of her. Then they all turned to face their Master, and he turned his back on them.

As underlined Starkiller is for lack of a better word quite enraged at the idea of Juno being in Darth Vader's possession. He will never submit and even still he doesn't even after seeing Juno at this moment. Not only this but Starkiller again corroborates the idea that Vader has an ulterior motive and is not just trying to kill him at this point.

For a second, the world paused. The fighting around the spires seemed to lessen. Even the conflict in the sky grew still. She felt as though everyone in Kamino was looking in her direction - although surely, she knew, they didn't even see her. It was all about Vader and Starkiller - if the man she had loved was still alive. Footsteps came up the ramp. She strained against her bonds, but Vader was directly in her line of sight. She couldn't see past him. She could hear, though, and she would recognize his voice under any conditions, just like the Rogue Shadow. "Get out of my way," he said to Vader. "Your memories betray you." "They make me who I am." "You must turn your back on them in order to become who you will be." "Never, " he said.Vader stepped to one side, and past the swirling of his cloak, Juno saw him - Starkiller - and for an instant she didn't see the blood all over him or the tattered state of his flight uniform. All she saw was his eyes. And they in turn saw nothing but her. "Then she will die," Vader said, raising one hand in a signal to her guards. They raised their weapons, took aim, and fired. It happened so fast she barely had time to flinch. Vader had been keeping her alive for so long now that it didn't seem entirely real that he would dispose of her so suddenly. She jerked forward as far as the shackles allowed her, straining to get away. Every muscle in her body tensed in readiness. The weapons' muzzles flashed... ...and at that very instant a massive force struck her and the guards, flinging her backward so hard she thought her chains might break her wrists. The stormtroopers effectively disappeared, swept off the top of the spire in an instant. The shots they had fired all missed, deflected by the powerful force, although one burned her right cheek as it went by. The four energy bursts followed wild trajectories, outward across the crowded sky. "Juno!" Her shackles fell to the ground with a heavy clatter. Alive but winded, she couldn't reply.

We get Juno's POV here and it isn't much to analyze to be completely honest with you. The reason I am not doing just the fight scenes is the context surrounding this fight is almost more important than just understanding the fight itself as described by the text. We see Starkiller get enraged again and sweeps away the stormtroopers with a blast of his power.

She could barely even believe she was alive. She had caught just the fringe of the push that had killed the guards, and she knew that even so she had almost been killed herself. A different force gripped her, one no less powerful than the first, but aimed at her, not at anything else. It gripped her cruelly about the throat and lifted her so her feet barely touched the ground. "Bow before me," said Vader to the man she loved. Starkiller took a step forward. The force gripped her even more tightly, closing her windpipe. She choked, kicking out and finding no ground at all beneath her now. Her hands pulled at her throat, but there was nothing there to grip, and no way to fight it. "Juno!"She heard the furious despair in Starkiller's voice, and understood that he was fighting for her, and losing. "Bow before me," Vader repeated, "or she dies."

Now again, lets get into this juicy context. Juno herself remarks that Vader's own choke is no less than Starkiller's own enraged blast of power, this is not incorrect as everything up till now has not at all shown Vader to be below Starkiller in any way, if anything the opposite is true. To say that Starkiller is unwilling to kill Vader at this point, when he himself is described as furiously screaming, not only this but is literally watching the woman he loves slowly suffocate is foolish. Starkiller is both frustrated and terrified at what will happen to Juno.

Don't, she wanted to say. Don't do it. You've been down that path before. You know where it leads you. But she couldn't speak. She could barely even see him. Black dots were crowding out her vision as her oxygen-starved optic nerve began to fail. Don't let him trick you again. He couldn't possibly hear her, but she suspected it wouldn't make any difference. In his shoes, she would be tempted to give in, too. After all they had been through, after all they might have been but had been denied, they at last had a second chance. Arguably that was worth more than any political movement or philosophy. So long as they survived, their love would survive. Nothing else mattered. She understood, but she felt no relief as Darth Vader's terrible grip loosened and she fell painfully to the ground. Cool air rushed into her lungs. She coughed as though retching, feeling pain all along her windpipe. Over the sound of her hacking and wheezing, she heard two metallic clinks and looked up to see what had happened. Starkiller had deactivated his lightsabers and thrown them at Vader's feet.

Again the inner monologue of Juno corroborates the claims I have made thus far. She herself admits if she were in his shoes she would be tempted, bear in mind that Juno only has half the story, she does not know about the memory flashes or obsession that Starkiller has to deal with. Of course this is all relative, but it supports my narrative so I threw it in. After this Starkiller drops to his knees in submission trying to save Juno.

They rolled across the rooftop, their residual hear making the raindrops steam. Her vocal cords were red raw. Juno could only shake her head as Starkiller rook three steps forward, and went down on one knee at Darth Vader's feet. "I'll do your bidding," he said. "Just promise me you'll never hurt her again." "That, " said Vader, "depends entirely on you." Starkiller bowed his head, and Juno fought the urge to weep. She understood the dark place from which his capitulation had come, but submission to Darth Vader was not the way to save her. That way lay nothing but more separation and death. And betrayal. And murder.She had to find the strength somehow to free Starkiller - just as he, clone or original, had somehow fought his way back from the dead in order to find her again. Her desperate gaze caught sight of one of Starkiller's lightsabers. It had rolled in her direction and lay just out of her reach. If she was quiet, she might just be able to reach it. The equation was very simple, really. Once before, she had abandoned her entire life for Starkiller. She could easily abandon this one too if it meant saving him from the horrible fate he had just accepted, thinking that it would save her. Vader's back was to her, and Starkiller's head was still bowed. She raised herself to hands and knees and reached out for the lightsaber. "You will find and kill General Kota," Vader said. "If you refuse, the woman dies." Starkiller said nothing. Maybe he nodded, but Juno couldn't see him. Vader had placed himself firmly between them once again, symbolically as well as physically.

Vader being arrogant and distracted focused on the mentally unstable clone before him...

"You will return to me and give yourself to the dark side," Vader went on. "If you resist, she dies." The warm metal hilt slid into Juno's hand. She lifted it gently, afraid of making any noise at all, and raised herself to her knees. This was the first time she had held a lightsaber. She knew all too well that it was probably going to be her last. "And when your training is complete," Vader said, "you will hunt down and execute the Rebel leaders."Still winded and aching from head to foot, Juno rose unsteadily to her feet, feeling for the lightsabers activation switch and hardly daring to take her eyes off Vader's back as she did so. They were less than two paces apart. "If you fail, she dies. " She pressed the activation switch at the same instant she lunged. The bright blue blade sprang to life with a startling hiss, but she didn't let herself be distracted. She had used vibroblades in her training days; she knew how to wield a sword. It was even simpler than the point-and-shoot quip about blasters. She stabbed at Vader's back, taking the one chance she had left to reclaim her life with Starkiller. For an instant, she thought it might actually work. Vader's attention was firmly on Starkiller, and the sounds of battle provided effective cover. What was one more energy weapon over the hundreds in play in the facility? At the last instant, however, some arcane instinct must have warned him. He turned with inhuman speed. She could barely credit her eyes - black holes didn't spin so fast. The tip of Starkiller's lightsaber grazed the front of his chest panel, producing a shower of sparks. She felt no resistance. Then he pushed her in exactly the same way Starkiller had pushed the stormtroopers.

Yes yes, Juno lands a hit on Vader. However as shown in the text, his attention was "firmly on starkiller" he is distracted. Since Galen Marek is distracted for the ragdolling that happens next that argument works just the same for Vader. Keep in mind that Vader has just also had his chest panel damaged, this is important for three reasons...

1) Vader is now at a less than stellar state to be going head to head with his apprentice

2) His chest panel controls all of his important systems (link). Some refute this by saying Vader's systems function independently from one another, this is true, but thats where point 3 comes in.

3) "That was it! That was the key, the reason for Vader's antique style. To protect his center, as Grievous had been forced to do."

-Roan Shryne during the siege of kashyyyk, from the novel Star wars: Dark Lord: The rise of Darth Vader

pretty self explanatory, Vader's chest panel must be a pretty big weakness considering he himself built his entire style around protecting it from harm. So Vader is already at a disadvantage going into this next part of the fight, to summarize thus far the conditions of the fighters

Starkiller: Had a moment to clear his head and is enraged trying to kill Vader outright

Vader: Not trying to kill Starkiller, holding back from taking advantage of his weaknesses as proven when he purposely did not kill the stunned Starkiller during round one. Also he is injured at the most vital point of his suit.

She felt as though the world moved out from under her, sucking all the air away with it. The lightsaber fell from her hand, and suddenly she was flying. Her head snapped forward, and the rain boiled around her. The air itself seemed to hurt, she was moving so fast. Vader receded into the distance with uncanny speed. How far he pushed her, she couldn't tell. It seemed to last forever, but she knew she had to hit the ground sometime. She hoped it wouldn't be soon. Landing was going to hurt. Something slammed into her from behind.It did hurt. The last thing she felt was rain falling into her open eyes. The last thing she saw were three lightsaber blades painting red and blue shapes against the encroaching black.

Juno filler, literally means nothing.

Starkiller ran past Darth Vader to where Juno lay broken on the edge of the cloning spire's roof. Horror and self-reproach filled his mind. He hadn't seen her crawling for the lightsaber; he hadn't sensed her desperate plan until the very last moment - and it was his alarm that had alerted Vader, he was sure of it. He and his former Master had reacted at the same time. If Starkiller had moved an instant faster, had a fraction more of a second to think the problem through, he would have pushed Vader just as Vader had pushed Juno, impaling him on the blade before it was whisked away. Instead, he had thought only of saving Juno - a plan, he feared, that might always have been doomed to failure. He stopped her before she flew off the edge of the roof, at least, but the grisly crunch of bones when she landed was unmistakable. Her head was bent at an impossible angle, and her eyes didn't track him as he ran toward her.

Starkiller's thoughts, basically that he should have been faster, that this was his fault a common symptom of survivors guilt, but completely unrelated to our analysis. Also he fails to save her with TK.

"Juno!" A black-gloved hand grabbed his shoulder. He pulled away, howling with rage. His fallen lightsabers snapped into his hands and came instantly to life. With both blades moving in tandem, he struck out at his former Master using all his strength, all his rage, all his grief. Darth Vader blocked the blow, but only just. Starkiller pushed, and the Dark Lord stumbled backward. Instead of pursuing the attack, Starkiller went to go to Juno, but once again Darth Vader stood in his path.

Starkiller's lightsabers snap to his hands, he's ready to kill Vader, but yet Vader whilst in the condition already mentioned casually defends against the blow, again with the same line used before I believe to emphasize Vader's dominance during the fight "he blocked the blow, but only just" which is completely consistent with the "casual" moves he displayed during round one. Also, note that Starkiller is going all out at this point, whilst the novel doesn't specify force rage or an amplification of any kind, we can clearly see in that game that at this point Starkiller begins to use the technique known as Force Fury which is a drastic amplification of his standard abilities and power set. Even if you don't subscribe to this evidence, the novel itself at least makes mention of his attitude during the fight, at this point he is trying to kill Vader. Vader is simply trying to turn Starkiller. Finally we must address the fact that Vader deliberately blocks Starkiller from getting to Juno, why this is, is revealed within the next lines...

"Get out of my way." "Your feelings for her are not real," Vader said, not moving. "They are real to me." Starkiller attacked the Dark Lord again, but this time he was the one driven back. With a sense of piercing despair, he saw exactly how the fight would go. He and his former Master would dance like marionettes while Juno lay dying - if she wasn't already dead - and the war raged around them, unchecked by this minor tragedy. In the context of the galaxy's suffering, Juno was just one freedom fighter who had died that day - one among many on Kamino alone. Only she hadn't given her life in combat or to save someone less fortunate than herself. She had been snuffed out thanks to the manipulations of one single tortured man, a man whose stubbornness would never allow him to give up, admit fault, or compromise. Starkiller knew nothing about the Dark Lord's origins, but he knew what he had become. More monolith than man, his shadow bestrode the Empire, casting darkness wherever it fell. But what was the source of that scourge? What twisted psychology had brought him to where he stood now - risking his life to prevent the clone of his failed apprentice from coming near the body of the woman he had loved?

So a couple minor but noteworthy things can be seen from this passage. Vader does not want Starkiller to be attached to Juno, that was the purpose of the whole game, the reason Starkiller is so driven is his love for Juno. With this in mind Starkiller himself now acknowledges that he cannot win the fight in fact he attacks the Dark Lord but this time "he was driven back." Also Starkiller's realization comes together...

Sudden understanding burst in Starkiller's mind. This was what Darth Vader had wanted all along. He had been right to fear that Juno was in danger, but not just from clones like him - from Vader, who would use her death to destabilize Starkiller and lead him headlong back to the dark side via anger and despair. Where Starkiller had seen hope, where Starkiller had been willing to sacrifice his own destiny to give the woman he had loved a chance to live, his former Master had seen only opportunity for betrayal - for without Juno, what did Starkiller have left to live and fight for? He had no family, friends, or allies. Juno was always intended to be the catalyst for his downfall. Her precipitous attack had merely brought the critical moment forward. Starkiller saw things very differently. It wasn't Juno who had to die to complete Starkiller's training. It was Darth Vader himself, and he had brought this moment upon himself. Had he been content to let Starkiller go, none of this would have happened. Were he dead or freely searching for Juno, either way, he would never have willingly come back to Kamino. He would have gone anywhere else, and never returned.Darth Vader simply wouldn't let go. The massive cloning exercise itself was proof of that. He had raised Starkiller to be a monster, and he would let nothing get in the way of achieving that outcome. Not even Starkiller's own death. Even if it took a thousand reincarnations and the death of trillions of innocent people, Darth Vader would not give up. His persistence, his unwillingness to accept defeat, was both his greatest strength and his greatest weakness.

Now, through Starkiller we see Vader's plan. If you haven't been on board with the idea that Vader is not trying to kill Starkiller thus far and is in fact going all out, this should be proof enough for a change of mind. However, with that said, my "claim" is borderline fact with the next parts of the passages you will read. Also, take careful note of what I underlined here, Starkiller has now admitted that Vader brought this on himself indicating he feels no guilt about killing Vader, emotionally scarred or not, he is trying to kill Vader the text here proves it.

All the clones were destroyed. As far as Starkiller knew, he was the last one left - so that was one vision averted, at least. No matter what happened, no version of him would hill foul of Darth Vader's vile plan now. They fought like the Sith Lords of old, raging back and forth across the roof of the spire, uncaring what happened around them. Starkiller maintained his efforts to get to Juno, and Darth Vader did everything in his power to stop him. Neither would capitulate. Neither would be the first to break. Their wills were locked.They broke apart, lightsabers hissing in the ceaseless rain. Lightning split the sky into a thousand jagged shapes. Thunder rolled.

Okay so the first part of this fight is simple, rough parity can be drawn as they "rage back and forth across the roof of the spire" and they are focused on one another. This next line is really important though at least to me. I have seen people misinterpret the text here to say Vader did everything in his power to stop him, implying Vader is going all out. Though this is not true, even the simple definition of "stop" compared to "kill" or as Galen had insinuated that Vader "brought this on himself" are not comparable. Even if this single line of text meant Vader was doing his best to stop starkiller going all out in the process, its still not the state Galen resides in. However, that isn't even the case as the text clearly states that Vader is doing everything in his power to stop Galen from getting to Juno. That doesn't even mean hes pressed by Galen's attacks, simply that he doesn't want his apprentice pining over the corpse of some dead woman that means nothing to him. With everything together it is readily apparent that Starkiller is not pressing Vader like everyone thinks and that Vader is not backpedaling the entire fight, as indicated by the fact they are "raging back and forth" across the spire. This isn't a contest of equals, this is Vader trying to turn Starkiller whilst Galen all out trying to take Vader's head off. In the last paragraph I underlined the fact that Galen sees Vader as someone who will not stop, and obviously Vader is not morally correct in Galen's mind. The only cure for a monster like Vader as Galen himself has insinuated is death, and Galen plans to deliver.

Neither had noticed the battle fading around them. "Let me go," Starkiller said, sounding much calmer than he felt. His heart was pounding, and his lungs burned. "You've taken everything from me. You must see that I will never serve you now." "You are wrong. I have given you everything." "This?" He gestured at Juno's inert form. He couldn't tell if she was breathing, but he still held out a distant hope. "You have done nothing for me." "It is our destiny to destroy the Emperor. You and me, together." There it was, Starkiller thought. That promise again. Surely Darth Vader could see that it meant nothing now, after so many times offered in the past, and none of them fulfilled?Unless... A deeper layer of understanding presented itself. Unless Darth Vader felt exactly the same as he did. What lengths had the Emperor, Darth Vader's Master, gone to in order to create him? And how far would Darth Vader go to get revenge? To attain his own destiny as a Sith? "The Rebels want to destroy the Emperor," Starkiller said.

So again a short passage about how Galen feels more calm than he actually is, whether you subscribe to the force rage argument this line does indicate that in the past he felt the same as I have been "theorizing" this whole time. Okay, so now I can admit it. Galen has a realization and is no longer trying to kill Vader at this particular point in the fight, the end at least. He sees now that Vader is sympathetic and a slave himself, and feels empathy towards his former master. He even attempts to reason with Vader trying to turn him to the alliances side. Now with that said we all know how well this will end...

"Why not work with them rather th-?" Vader attacked before he could finish the sentence, a blistering combination of blows that left Starkiller on his back foot. Clearly he had hit a very deep nerve. For a fleeting moment, the plan had seemed almost inspired. With Darth Vader on Kota's side, what couldn't the Alliance accomplish? But it was a dream. The Rebels would never trust the Emperor's apprentice, and Vader was making it very clear that he wanted no part of it either. The vehemence of his response left no doubt about that. Starkiller found himself backed up almost to the edge of the cloning spire's roof. One more step, and he would fall, and to fall would give Vader the high ground. That might not result in his death, but it would certainly end the fight. It needed to end now, or else it might never end.Blow after blow rained on him, forcing him back.

Vader gets mad, now what does this tell us? Firstly, there is no indication in the text that Vader is even trying to kill Starkiller at this point, in fact as shown in the next few lines he is most definitely not. However, what we can clearly ascertain from this is Vader actually trying is enough to literally drive Starkiller on his back foot. He is literally being pushed to the edge of the spire, so angered Vader is enough to at the very least to throw sympathetic Galen way back, but the lines in the passage indicate that Starkiller has completely changed. He has no doubt that Vader wants no part in his offer. At the very least Galen is defending not attacking, but given the fact that barely trying Vader was pretty handily dealing with Galen its likely that a slightly more ramped up Vader is just giving him no openings to exploit. This idea is even corroborated by the text that states Galen is trying to end the fight, in fact he says I need to "end it now" so either Starkiller is going all out at this point, or he is at least trying to end the fight, but given the situation the circumstance and the fact his only love is literally dying right beside him its more likely hes still trying to kill Vader but just can't.

There had to be a way to free himself and avenge Juno at the same time... but a stalemate seemed unavoidable. Any move he made was sure to lead him to an indefensible position. Then it occurred to him. An indefensible position was exactly what he needed. He lunged. Darth Vader saw him coming and swiped with unbearable strength, sending Starkiller's left lightsaber flying in pieces. Starkiller lunged again, and his right lightsaber joined his left. He fell back, beaten, and stared up at his former Master. "This is your last chance," Vader said, standing over him with the unwavering tip of his lightsaber pointed directly at Starkiller's chest.

Okay, here is where the fight truly tips to Starkiller's favor. He recognizes that he cannot win the engagement and though he refers to the idea of a stalemate as inevitable, that is an incorrect assumption based on the knowledge we have gathered here today. Vader has held the upper hand for most of the fight, and now Starkiller knows he can't win. He leaves himself open, keep in mind something here though. Starkiller would only leave himself open like he did with his lunge if he knew Vader wasn't going to kill him. Given what happens next he is right to assume as much. Galen at this point is taking advantage of Vader's (for lack of a better term), mercy. This is why he wins the fight as we will see. No matter who you speak to on the topic of this fight, no matter what argument is brought up on Starkiller's behalf, know this one thing. Darth Vader is not actually trying to kill Starkiller. Nw one may ask themselves why is Darth Vader trying to only cut Mareks lightsaber not his hand? As noted in Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader, Darth Vader believes that it is his loss of tissue that weakens himself from being the chosen one. Interesting then that Darth Vader chooses specifically to disarm Starkiller, not even taking one of his hands even though he obviously could if he is striking at the hilt, as performing the Sun Djem mark of contact is more difficult than the Cho Mai. It seems most likely that Vader doesn't want his apprentice to lose potential and this is the most in character answer, Vader doesn't want to damage his apprentice in any way as he feels that will "ruin" him. If this is true Vader has such limited avenues of attack for dealing with Starkiller the way he wants to, that its clear, along with a myriad of supporting evidence to back up these claims, he is the dominant one in this fight. An injured, holding back,possibly not trying to amputate Vader is still the one who clearly holds the dominant edge, think about that, how much this means for the fight as a whole... with that said, let us see what Starkiller does to inevitably win this contest...

Starkiller stared up at the black mask, sure of two things. Vader didn't want to kill him, but not out of mercy or sympathy for his lot. The Dark Lord had invested far too much time and energy in re-creating his former apprentice, and he wouldn't want to throw all that away. Not when he seemed on the verge of victory. Juno was dead or dying. Starkiller was disarmed and helpless. Any rational being would at least consider Vader's offer.The second thing Starkiller knew was: The best way to beat Darth Vader is to let him think he's won. Thinking of Wedge Antilles, he said, "I make my own chances." With both hands he sent a wave of lightning into the sparking gash Juno had made in Vader's chest plate. The Dark Lord staggered backward, transfixed by the unexpected retaliation. Starkiller leapt to his feet and followed him, keeping up the lightning attack and using telekinesis to rip Vader's lightsaber from his temporarily weakened fingers. Sheers of energy spread our across the wet rooftop. Smoke and steam rose up in a tortured spiral. The grating whine of Vader's respirator rook on a desperate edge. He went down on one knee. Starkiller stood over him. Vader's lightsaber swept into his former apprentice's hand. The blade came to rest at his throat. Starkiller stared into the black mask, breathing heavily. One twitch of the blade and Vader would be dead at last.

Lighting, the suit is noticeably weak to lightning. Starkiller has to concentrate a burst into the highly sensitive control panel that is already damaged to slow Vader long enough to get to his feet putting even more strength behind another barrage. It is only when Starkiller, a powerful force adept, is able to catch Vader off guard that the fight ends. It is only when Starkiller, is able to "cheapshot" Vader the same way Vader "cheapshotted" starkiller with the TK shove in the middle of a vision. To the Starkiller fans who omit context, I implore you, use this evidence against them and see the double standard. This analysis was not about raising Vader or lowering Starkiller, it was about showing everyone who wants the truth, the context behind everything that actually happened in this fight. Vader's respirator itself is noted to be whining on a desperate edge due to the lightning that was directed into his chest panel. Vader is dropped to a knee. This fight is the definition of circumstantial and if anyone held the edge for the duration of the fight it is Darth Vader, lord of the Sith. Round 2 goes to Darth Vader.

Alternative Media and Relevance to Canon: The Power of Darth Vader

So for those who have never heard of the "One True Canon Path" argument for The Force Unleashed series allow me to explain. In a databank from from 2007 The Force Unleashed Novel is listed under as the "One true canon path"

Source: First Look: The Force Unleashed Novel, (2007)

In 2008, the next chapter of the Star Wars saga will be told in LucasArts' brand-new, next generation video game, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed. The game casts players as Darth Vader's "Secret Apprentice" and the storyline promises to unveil new revelations about the Star Wars galaxy. The official The Force Unleashed novel by author Sean Williams (based on the story by Haden Blackman) will cover the events of the game, providing the one true "canon" path of events that affect the Star Wars saga.

This is all well and good for argumentation on Starkiller's behalf. You see up till now I have only used Novel material to supplement my analysis. This is because, I want those who have an open mind to the fight to see things differently, now I will be cementing my point with evidence from the game as well. To do this though, I have to disprove this little quote above me, but fear not I came prepared...

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Now for those who don't know who Leland Chee, he is the "lore keeper" for star wars. He designed the Canon Policy and he has more authority than any singular person on the subject of Star Wars lore bar Filoni or Lucas. I think it is fair to say, that Leland Chee overrides this databank quote from literally 10 years ago. Meaning that yes the Game does have just as much precedence per Chee saying "its all on equal footing" Now note something here though, Chee does not say that the game even need follow the narrative, so the implication that can be made is that the games don't even need to follow the novel to be consistent with characters and by extension power levels.

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Okay, so this is self explanatory, earlier in the game and novel this happens in the Wii version of The Force Unleashed 2. Darth Vader and Starkiller get into a force lock and it is Starkiller's power that throws himself back ironically enough. Vader stands unharmed and seemingly just agitated from the attack. It is fair to say that since Starkiller was the one who was thrown back and since Vader is obviously not, this is a showing of Vader having more power than Starkiller.

lets also look at the context of the scene

We see here that Darth Vader has Starkiller trapped, he performs a Force Choke to which Starkiller seemingly cannot get out of, not only this, but Starkiller is in the air for about 3-5 seconds and unable to break the choke, it is only his use of lightning which as we have discussed is one of Vader's most prevalent weaknesses that he is able to break the lock, from there he attempts to override Vader with his power, but consequently is thrown back with his own power. Whether you believe in the barrier arguments for superiority to another character, this should be clear to you, Vader reflects Starkiller's own power back at him and is completely fine from the resulting explosion, whilst Starkiller is litterally thrown through a wall/grate. What's more, despite Vader's dialouge we know he is still not trying to kill Starkiller at this point as his goal is still to capture him and turn him back. Yet, still we see Vader shrugging off those blows like nothing.

Now here we have another showing. This one has some workaround, because Galen could just be not trying to get Juno killed. However, we clearly see Vader grips Starkiller for the entire lift's ride. Even if you don't believe in ragdolling, this is as cut and dry as it gets. Darth Vader is capable of griping Starkiller and Starkiller cannot break out evidenced by his struggling, which is consistent with his first showing during the escape from Kamino level.

these are the only ones with complete wiggle room if you don't believe in simple pushes as a display of superiority. However given everything else these pushes, the casual disarm and everything else fits in perfectly. The idea here is not to show you one singular piece of evidence and elaborate on it until you are all bored to death, rather I am simply stating multiple things that align with text and story and substantiate the claims I have made thus far.

This is the final piece of evidence for the blog I will present...

This is again about as concrete as it gets. Vader simply grips Starkiller mid jump (who would obviously have his force barrier up) and continues to hold him for a good 8-20 seconds. He doesn't even get out of it this time, Vader throws him rather than just snapping his neck (presumably because again he is not trying to kill him) and Starkiller bounces off the structure and catches Vader off guard with a Force blast. Let's see here thats about a total of 2 full ragdolls, two pushes, and a blast of Starkiller's power no sold for Vader and one good force push for Starkiller, who is more powerful here?

Final Note:

I made this blog to examine the details of the fight as presented in all relevant mediums. I did not mention the comic here because we only get a brief fight scene between Starkiller and Vader and its just Starkiller driving Vader back from Boba Fett's point of view. In all of the mediums presented here, which I feel are the most relevant, it is made apparent that Vader holds the edge, that Vader is holding back, and that Starkiller is not as powerful as Vader. If you disagree with my points, that is fine, viewer interpretation is important. However, I have been completely unbiased here, any speculation that I have listed has been noted with the terms possibly or some other verbiage that indicates it is not fact. With that said I neglected to mention a few other points, including the Dark Apprentice's existence as well as some other things. If this blog makes a change in any of your minds I will be writing something detailing the specifics of those facets to this fight, as it stands however I think this piece stands good enough on its own. Thanks for reading!