All ‘Star Wars’ Lightsabers and Who Wields Them

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(L to R) Mace Windu, Kit Fisto, Saesee Tiin, Agen Kolar about to fight Palpatine in 'Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith'

Credit: Lucasfilm

The lightsaber might be one of the most historic weapons in cinema, and it has continually evolved since A New Hope flew into theaters in 1977. Though everyone knows about the basic types of lightsabers that Anakin and Luke Skywalker wielded, many styles have been constructed and showcased through the years of movies, shows, books, and more.

Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) wielding a lightsaber in Return of the Jedi
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: Disney Releases “Ahsoka” Exclusives Only for Disney+ Subscribers

Interestingly, a new lightsaber might have made its debut in the trailer for Star Wars: Visions Season 2. Though it has not yet been fully explored, we could have seen the first instance of the new rapier lightsaber. Though this style has been teased plenty in the franchise before, it could be the first time a Jedi and Sith use them in a more refined combat style.

Let’s look more deeply into the types of lightsabers that have been shown in Star Wars canon and those warriors who have wielded them.

Types of Lightsabers and Who Has Wielded Them

Dual-Phase Lightsaber

darth vader rogue on a star wars story
Credit: Lucasfilm

Arguably the most powerful lightsaber belongs to the most powerful being. Darth Vader is in sole possession of the dual-phase lightsaber, which is unique for several reasons. For one, this lightsaber focuses on having two crystals within its construction. While most hilts are generally constructed with one kyber crystal, Vader uses two, which also have a pretty scary function.

Darth Vader can switch between both these crystals to create a new alignment that allows his weapon to grow in length. The dual crystals represent a more violent time, which could be why Vader is fond of using them. He was created before the start of the Galactic Empire, and with being burned alive by his mentor, he might want to hold onto as much violent hatred as possible.

The dual-phase lightsaber is also said to be one of the most challenging models to manage, which is why only those with the master skill in technique and combat should wield them. Vader became one of the most powerful people in the universe, and as such, he also wields the most powerful weapon. The deep red color is also quite frightening.

Standard Lightsaber

Luke Skywalker ready to face Kylo Ren
Credit: Lucasfilm

As mentioned, the standard lightsaber is one that fans have seen plenty in the Star Wars universe. Though Luke and Anakin Skywalker were powerful Jedi, they didn’t need to rely on something as powerful as the dual-phase lightsaber. The standard lightsaber is of simple construction and uses only one crystal to emit its blade and power.

The kyber crystal within the standard lightsaber is meant to do all the heavy lifting, meaning anyone can theoretically wield these. For instance, when Finn picks up Luke’s former weapon, he can use it. He cannot use the weapon to the best of its abilities, as he does not possess the ability to wield the force, but he can still swing it around to do some heavy damage if need be.

Luke Skywalker, Anakin Skywalker, and Qui-Gonn Jinn favored the standard lightsaber, likely because they were far more proficient in wielding the force to act as a conduit to make their weapon even stronger.

Double-Bladed Lightsaber

Ray Park as Darth Maul
Credit: Lucasfilm

Ah, where would we be without the theatrics and choreography of Ray Parks from The Phantom Menace? In the late 1990s, the prequel trilogy started by introducing one of the most storied and controversial characters: Darth Maul. Maul became a household name in the Star Wars history books simply because he brought forth the double-bladed lightsaber. Though it has become more commonplace for Jedi Knights and Sith Lords to use, it was first highlighted by Maul.

The lore states that Maul poured over Sith records to help create his version, which contains multiple kyber crystals. The double-bladed lightsaber takes great skill and athleticism simply because of its extra-long hilt and blade length. One wrong move, and someone could be walking away with a missing appendage.

Save Opress, Maul’s brother, also used a double-bladed lightsaber. Pong Krell from The Clone Wars also used two double-bladed lightsabers, though he did have four arms, so it was likely easier for him to do. More recently, Orla Jareni and Keeve Trennis from the New Republic were told to use the double-bladed lightsaber. Krell and Jareni used a “hinged” lightsaber, also known as the switchblade.

Cal Kestis from Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order and the upcoming Star Wars Jedi Survivor can switch between single-blade and double-bladed lightsaber stances.

Switchblade Lightsaber

switchblade lightsaber

As mentioned, Pong Krell used a “hinged” or “switchblade” lightsaber that could morph from a single-blade into a double-bladed one. Though fans might not remember Krell’s design, it was brought back into everyone’s mind when Rey’s visions showcased her using one. The blade can fold to create the makings of a singular blade, though it’s two.

Rey fought Dark Side Rey in her Force vision, which also showed how the switchblade lightsaber could trap another lightsaber within it. This would be effective in disarming a foe. It is a bit stranger that no current characters in the Star Wars mythos are using them.

Lightsaber Pike

lightsaber pike rebels
Credit: Lucasfilm

Though the lightsabers mentioned above are clearly of the sword variety, there are also exciting ways that kyber crystals can be used to create other bladed weapons. One of those weapons happens to be the lightsaber pike. This weapon was made famous by the Jedi temple Guard in Coruscant in both Rebels and The Clone Wars. The yellow blades are meant to indicate the long-lasting Jedi Order.

Interestingly, Luke Skywalker wielded a broken lightsaber pike, which he found by a Jedi temple guard that had been slain. Though the pike generally has two blades, Luke found one with only a working blade, which he used to defend himself against the Grand Inquisitor. Luke repaired the pike to act as a standard lightsaber before he created his own.

Crossguard Lightsaber

Adam Driver as Kylo Ren in 'Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens' (2015)
Credit: Lucasfilm

We did mention that new lightsabers had begun to be created as the franchise went on, and one of the more exciting creations is the crossguard lightsaber that Kylo Ren wields in the sequel trilogy. At first glance, everyone became obsessed with this blade simply because it utilized more of a medieval way of fighting. With the cross guard, no one could pass your weapons guard to injure or end you.

What made Ren’s more interesting is the kyber crystal he used made the blade seem far more active and unpredictable. This blade could have easily been more of the protosaber variety, though the blade just crackled a ton, likely from its design. Stellan Gios of the New Republic also uses a variation of the crossguard lightsaber, though his blade is far more advanced.

Gios’ design uses a hilt to extend the two crossguard saber blades, whereas Ren’s was just two smaller blades that jutted out of the side of his weapon.

Protosaber

Baylan holding an orange colored lightsaber in the new Ahsoka trailer
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: Upcoming ‘Star Wars’ Series Could Introduce All-New Lightsaber

The protosaber is said to be the least refined of all the lightsabers, as the earlier models took far more to operate. The blades of these lightsaber models were so wild they had to be plugged into a power pack, as the original designs did not possess the kind of power that could be designed into a hilt.

The protosaber also made its way into the Vader Immortal VR game, which showcased an elegant hilt that was made of prongs that led to the kyber crystal, which was exposed. We would imagine the idea of the blade being wild had to do with the kyber crystal not being contained within the hilt. The ancient protosabers were naturally forgotten in favor of the standard model that followed.

Apart from being able to wield this weapon in the Vader Immortal game, Odan-Urr was said to use a protosaber, which he plugged into his belt via a power pack. We imagine it would be challenging to defend the power pack from would-be attackers.

Shoto Lightsaber

rosario dawson dual lightsabers ahsoka
Credit: Lucasfilm

The shoto lightsaber is wielded by the strongest of weapon users. Their shorter blades allow for far more aggression when attacking, which is why Ahsoka Tano now wields two. She initially wielded one in her off-hand when she was learning from Anakin Skywalker. She has recently been shown wielding two, meaning she learned to be efficient with both since The Clone Wars Days into her own solo series.

Another famous Jedi who used the shoto lightsaber is Yoda. Naturally, he would be one to use such a short blade since he is smaller. However, we all know how lightning-fast and aggressive he can be, especially when he fought Emperor Palpatine in Revenge of the Sith.

There is also a Guard Shoto blade with a 90-degree hilt, allowing the user to switch faster and more fluidly from offense to defense. Ahsoka could be wielding this type, though we will likely find that out when her solo series is released.

Inquisitor Lightsaber

jedi fallen order cal kestis battles inquisitors
Credit: Electronic Arts (EA)/Respawn Entertainment

The lightsabers that the Inquisitors wield might be some of the most interesting designed ones. They feature a circular hilt that allows the blade to rotate 360 degrees around. This can lead to the blade being used in a variety of ways. For instance, in the Obi-Wan Kenobi series, the Grand Inquisitor rapidly spins his blade in a helicopter motion, which we imagine would destroy anything in its path.

Someone proficient in this type of blade would certainly be one that should be considered a master of combat. The blade rotating like that would need cunning and skill to deliver blows to their opponents continually.

The Inquisitors all used these blades when they were introduced as Darth Vader’s agents in Star Wars Rebels. They also appeared in the Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order video game, as the Ninth Sister used a double-bladed lightsaber with this rotating hilt.

The Darksaber

(L-R): Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) and Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff) with the Darksaber in Lucasfilm's THE MANDALORIAN, season three, exclusively on Disney+. ©2023 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.
Credit: Lucasfilm

The Darksaber is a one-of-a-kind weapon that has ties to the Mandalorian people. This blade has been mentioned numerous times and has shown up in Star Wars lore for years. However, it has now found its way into the canon by being the story’s subject for The Mandalorian. Moff Gideon came upon the blade from Bo-Katan Kryze, who then lost it to Din Djarin.

The blade was created over 1000 years ago by Tarre Vizsla, a Mandalorian and the first of his kind to ever sit on the Jedi Council. The construction of the blade resulted in the blade having a more cylindrical design and one that looks more like a longsword than any other weapon.

What makes the Darksaber that much more interesting is that it operates in a sort of reverse way than the standard lightsaber. Though anyone can wield the standard lightsaber, it is further expanded by those who use the force. The Darksaber operates in a way that those with a sheer will can make the weapon powerful. This is why Moff Gideon can proficiently swing the blade. Din Djarin also had trouble using it because his mental and emotional state did not match the weapon. The Darksaber also allows the wielder to call themselves the leader of Mandalore.

Ezra Bridger’s Lightsaber Gun

ezra bridger lightsaber gun rebels
Credit: Lucasfilm

One of the most unique and bizarre lightsabers belonged to Ezra Bridger. He built his lightsaber hilt out of a blaster, which allowed him to use the lightsaber and gun consecutively. The lightsaber was also one-of-a-kind, though it was destroyed by Darth Vader, leading to Bridger wielding a standard lightsaber.

Bridger is set to appear in the Ahsoka series, and though he has gone off with Thrawn, we could see a version of this lightsaber come back. That might be unlikely, as his design was directly related to his own insecurity in his blade handling skill. Still, it would be interesting if he found a way to be proficient with a blaster and lightsaber again.

Training Lightsaber

training lightsaber

This lightsaber is simplistic, short, and mainly designed for the young padawan who use it when they start their Jedi training. Younglings are shown using these blades in the prequel trilogy and sadly were not equipped with them when Anakin Skywalker happened upon them.

The training blades are also far less powerful than regular lightsabers, so they are not built with the ability to damage anyone seriously. They are said to stun the muscles, though. So even if the younglings had these blades, they wouldn’t have done much against Anakin.

Lightwhip

lightsaber whip
Credit: Wookiepedia

The lightsaber whip, or “lightwhip,” is a lightsaber variant that has been fashioned to have multiple plasma blades that can do heavy damage. The Nightsisters of Dathomir are said to be some of the only wielders of this lightsaber style, though it has popped up in other mentions throughout the Star Wars universe.

For instance, High Republic Jedi Venestra Rwoh modified her lightsaber to include a whip mode, which she saw in a Force vision. We are unsure if this model will make its way into more mainstream Star Wars Universe releases. Still, we could also see some Praetorian Guards using some variation of this weapon, considering they already use a lightsaber variation in their weaponry.

Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: Kenobi Will Save Rey in New ‘Star Wars’ Project

There you have it, the different lightsaber models that have been introduced in Star Wars, and the legends who have wielded them. Though there is not a category for the rapier lightsaber yet, it is likely to be made known once Star Wars: Visions Season 2 comes out and everyone can see its design more clearly. It does look exciting, and we can’t wait to see the epic battle that happens with those blades.

Which lightsaber model would you wield? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments down below!

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