When it comes to weaponry, you can’t get much better than a lightsaber. As Obi Wan once said, it’s an elegant weapon for a more civilized age, and it’s pretty much the top of the line when it comes to melee weaponry. This has a lot to do with the person wielding it, of course, since your average Internet writer would likely chop off several appendages just turning one on, but when it comes to a Jedi or a Sith, it can pretty much overpower any ranged or melee weapon in the Star Wars Universe.
Science-Fiction being what it is, it’s not surprising that writers and artists have come up with innovative ways to challenge the most powerful weapon in the universe. Thanks to that challenge, there are actually quite a few weapons that can challenge what Luke Skywalker so lovingly calls a “Laser Sword.” For this list, we kicked around some ideas and came up with a few that have been proven to stand up to even the most powerful Force users and their trusty weapons. Like any good fandom, though, we expect some discussion in the comments, so please let us know if we missed any of your favorites!
15. EWHB-12 HEAVY REPEATING BLASTER
The EWHB-12 Heavy Repeating Blaster was the model used primarily during the Clone Wars. It was favored by Stormtroopers thanks to its incredibly high rate of fire, ease of transport (it could be broken down quickly) and the setting that enabled it to automatically target and fire on anyone or anything that happened to walk in front of it making it an excellent sentry weapon.
As a heavy repeating blaster, it fired shots a lightsaber was capable of deflecting, but given its high rate of fire and the energy of each blast, a person wielding a lightsaber could eventually be overcome by the weapon. Deflecting a shot at the people firing it or at the weapon itself could take out one of these heavy blasters, but it’s likely they took out a Jedi or two in their day.
14. TL-50 HEAVY REPEATER
The Tl-50 was employed during the reign of the Galactic Empire and was one of the Stormtroopers’ principal heavy weapons. The TL-50 sported three barrels and could fire blaster bolts incredibly fast at a target. It also supported an alternate firing mode that could compact a charge from all three barrels into a single concussive blast. This made the weapon significantly overpowered for what amounts to a heavy machine gun and a favorite of Imperial forces.
The TL-50 can pose a challenge to anyone with only a lightsaber and the Force on their side. While the standard blaster fire it emits could be deflected by a trained Force-user, its high rate of fire made it difficult to withstand for very long. Additionally, the concussive blast can kill just about anyone it hits, though Imperial Troopers used it to “disperse” crowds more often than engage the Jedi with them.
The power of the bowcaster, a traditional weapon of Wookie warriors, was shown in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, though the weapon has been prevalent throughout Star Wars media for decades. The weapon uses a process of magnetic acceleration to fire a metal quarrel enveloped with plasma energy that is far more powerful than traditional blasters.
The reason a bowcaster can stand up to a lightsaber has everything to do with the ammunition it uses.
Lightsabers can deflect blaster fire, but they cannot deflect physical ammunition like the quarrel used in a bowcaster. For this reason, a Wookie with the intent and means to do so could, if luck was on their side, take on a Jedi or Sith with one of these heavy, yet accurate weapons. Of course, it would be in everyone’s best interest not to upset a Wookie.
12. MM9 ROCKET SYSTEM
The MM9 Rocket System is a favorite of bounty hunters in the Star Wars universe, having been popularly depicted by both Jango & Boba Fett. These small, wrist-mounted systems could be used to fire a number of different types of ordinance making them incredibly lethal. If a bounty hunter were so inclined, they could equip their launcher with a Type-12A anti-personnel rocket, a Type-12B stun rocket or the Merr Sonn 1126 rocket. These could be either laser-guided, movement-tracking capable or simply dummy rockets fired directly at an enemy.
When it comes to defending oneself from an incoming rocket, a lightsaber isn’t going to be a Jedi or Sith’s primary weapon of choice. An attempt to deflect the rocket would likely result in its detonation so most would rely on the Force to push the rocket away from them making the MM9 Rocket System, a weapon that can definitely challenge a lightsaber.
11. THERMAL DETONATOR
Thermal Detonators might look like a sci-fi version of a grenade — mostly because that’s what they are — but they are far more powerful than the ones we can find here on Earth. Thermal Detonators pack a powerful explosive punch in a small, palm-sized bomb, which can only be turned off by the person who turns them on. When one was used by Leia in Return of the Jedi, it caused some concern for Jabba and his palace guests.
Had it been used, it would have killed everyone in the palace chamber.
A Thermal Detonator is another example of an explosive that a Jedi or Sith’s lightsaber wouldn’t be of much use in blocking or deflecting. Anyone holding a lightsaber when a Thermal Detonator is pulled out in combat should probably throw it at the person wielding it since a deployed Thermal Detonator would kill anyone in its blast radius.
An Electrostaff was a melee weapon made in the Baktoid Armor Workshop and Holowan Mechanicals during the Clone Wars. They were primarily used by IG-100 Magmaguards and the Galactic Republic’s Clone Shock Troopers but were later used by Riot and Heavy Troopers during the Galactic Civil War.
Electrostaffs were designed specifically to combat lightsabers wielded by the Jedi.
Able to employ an electric field capable of blocking lightsaber blades, Electrostaffs may not have been as powerful as lightsabers, but with the ability to block them, a skilled wielder can, and has, been able to best a Jedi. Luke Skywalker nearly succumbed to one wielded by a scavenger called Sarco Plank. He nearly killed the young Jedi several times during their fight but was ultimately bested by the then Jedi-in-training.
9. FLECHETTE LAUNCHER
Flechette Launchers were used primarily during the last half of the Clone Wars. They were capable of firing canisters containing hundreds of razor-sharp flechettes, which would be spread out over a large area. The flechettes were small, durasteel darts that could be used to kill an entire squad of personnel. Though it is primarily an anti-personnel weapon, it could fire anti-vehicle rounds, which consisted of small missiles in place of the much smaller flechettes.
Flechette Launchers were used by all sides during the various wars and conflicts throughout the Star Wars universe.
When employed against a lightsaber, they could be difficult to dodge or overcome, making them a contender for this list. Like some of the other weapons on this list, multiple projectiles, some of which detonate, are difficult to block or deflect, no matter how good you are or how elegant your weapon.
8. MWC-35C “STACCATO LIGHTNING” REPEATING CANNON
The MWC-35C “Staccato Lightning” Repeating Canon was a heavy repeating blaster that had a capacity of 35,000 rounds. It could fire in two modes: a rapid rate of fire like any other heavy repeater or it could fire a single power shot. It was also affixed with a smart targeting system that could identify the firer’s position and group shots in order to maximize damage on the target. In its single-fire mode, it could collect a large amount of energy into a single shot fired via a pump-action foreguard.
The MWC-35c was primarily used by the freelance assassin and rebel Baze Malbus in Star Wars: Rogue One. While the weapon is technically a type of blaster, it’s more akin to a canon. Its power could easily overcome a lightsaber given its impressive rate of fire and the potential damage dealt by its pump-action shot.
7. BILARI ELECTRO-CHAIN WHIP
The Bilari Electro-Chain Whip is the weapon used by Supreme Leader Snoke’s Elite Praetorian Guard seen in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Initially, these weapons were bound together into a single sword-like staff, but could be snapped in half to place it into its whip mode. Like the name implies, the weapon employed an electro-plasma current that rendered it capable of deflecting lightsaber attacks.
While these weapons have only been seen on screen in the one film and they were ultimately no match against Rey and Kylo Ren, their ability to withstand a lightsaber blade suggests that if the right person were wielding one, it could have taken out a Jedi or Sith Lord. Their unique ability to function as both a sword and a whip makes them versatile when used by various types of combatants as well.
6. CORTOSIS BLADE
If you only ever saw the movies, you would probably believe that lightsabers could cut through anything but other lightsabers and a few electrically-charged weapons. There are a number of weapons crafted from materials durable enough to withstand even the most powerful lightsaber. During the Jedi Civil War, one such weapon was a Cortosis Blade. These were some of the most durable metals in the galaxy, which could block lightsaber attacks.
Lightsabers are technological marvels and weapons of incredible power, but at the end of the day, they are swords.
If someone were to wield one against another person who was a better fighter — even with the Force against them — they could overtake a Jedi or Sith Lord. A blade made entirely of Cortosis instead of an alloy with other metals was even able to short out a lightsaber when it struck one, making them particularly lethal against a Jedi or Sith.
5. SONGSTEEL BLADE
Songsteel was a luminescent and lightweight silver metal that was used by swordsmiths to create masterwork arms. Due to its rarity, time to work and cost, the metal was reserved for the most impressive weapons. Songsteel was more than capable of blocking lightsaber attacks, earning it a place on this list.
Jedi Master Darrus Jeht carried a Songsteel Sword when he dueled Jedi Masters Lanius Qel-Bertuk and Devan For’deschel, successfully deflecting two lightsaber attacks at once. He primarily used this weapon for the purpose of sparring in practice sessions, but other members of the Jedi order have been seen to use Songsteel swords and staffs as their primary weapons, which isn’t surprising given how light and durable the material is. The Master in Violet used a staff crafted from a Songsteel shard as her primary weapon during the attack on the Five Masters Academy.
4. MANDALORIAN IRON SWORD
Mandalorian Iron, also known as Beskar, is one of the most well-guarded secrets from the planet Mandalore. The Mandalorians created the special iron alloy and used it to construct their weapons, armor and spaceships only selling small amounts on the galactic market over the years. The metal is versatile, as it can be crafted into anything a metalsmith desires, which is one of the reasons they made their ships from it.
As it is incredibly durable, not even a lightsaber can cut through it, meaning you could imprison a Jedi with a lightsaber inside a Mandalorian Iron cage and they wouldn’t be able to escape by cutting themselves out. Mandalorian Iron weapons were more than capable of challenging a lightsaber; its durability and rarity made it more valuable than durasteel and even Cortosis weapons.
3. PHRIK WEAPONS
Phrik is one of the most durable elements in the Star Wars universe. It is a metallic compound that was originally mined on Gromas in the Perkell sector. The lightsabers crafted by Darth Sidious during his apprenticeship under Darth Plagueis were constructed from Phrik, making them pretty much indestructible.
Phrik is primarily used to create battle armor due to it being incredibly light as well as durable.
Concerning its durability, a container made of Phrik was the only thing that remained intact from the surface of Alderaan when it was destroyed by the Death Star. Due to its high malleability and durability, Phrik can be constructed into just about any type of weapon needed. It is naturally lightsaber resistant so any weapon crafted from it could challenge a lightsaber in battle.
Amphistaff’s were incredibly durable weapons found on the Yuuzhan Vong homeworld and they hold the unique distinction on this list as being living creatures. An Amphistaff had the ability to utilize its power glands to emit electrical impulses that reorganized its cell structure. This allowed it to become razor sharp and alter its form into one of three weapons: a quarterstaff, whip or a spear.
Because of their physiology, an Amphistaff was nearly indestructible, making it capable of blocking lightsabers. It could even soften its body and wrap around a lightsaber blade and attack the person holding it with its large, venomous jaws. These living weapons were more than a match for a lightsaber and it was only thanks to their will and connection to the Force that a Jedi could battle a capable warrior wielding one.
1. THE DARKSTAFF
The Darkstaff was an ancient Sith artifact. The staff was first created by a member of the Sith Order thousands of years prior to the events of the film series. While it was a staff and a type of weapon, it was also sentient and unpredictable. It was designed to feed off of the Force and also sucked in any light that it came into contact with.
Anyone wielding the Darkstaff could dominate the thoughts and will of anyone else.
As it consumed Force energy, the Darkstaff could become powerful enough to destroy an entire planet. It was immune to lightsaber attacks and all powers derived from using Force powers. It was the ultimate dark side weapon in the Galaxy and was only destroyed when an opponent sacrificed himself and became one with the Force, which channeled the light side directly into the Darkstaff destroying it.
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