Why charge into battle when your words alone can bring the galaxy to its knees? This week, we will explore what it means to roleplay as the diabolical Sith Inquisitor. Even a heavily armored opponent like the Sith Warrior or the Trooper is no match for the political dealings and backstabbing the Sith Inquisitor wields. But the Empire is full of those who scheme and plot against enemy and ally alike. Do you have what it takes to bring them down as well?
The Star Wars universe is full of schemers, but it takes a special time to plot at the level the Sith do. Those who could be known as Inquisitors are responsible for the Sith attack on the Republic that started the events of SWTOR; the end of a thousand year plot. Even longer still was the plot to topple the Republic once more and turn it into the Galactic Empire under the rule of Palpatine. But what makes these people worthy of the title? Follow me past the cut and we’ll find out.
Emperor Palpatine, or Darth Sideous, is the first Inquisitor that many Star Wars fans are introduced to. His appearance as a frail old man masked not only a calculating and sinister mind, but an incredible mastery over the dark side. This is the man who, through political scheming alone, laid the galaxy at his feet and eradicated the Jedi Order. How could any Sith not aspire to those heights? Palpatine was also the first to use the Inquisitor’s signature ability: Force Lightning. His use of it likely spawned the idea of the Sith as cruel manipulators instead of just brute warriors.
But what can you take from Palpatine? Though your character may not rule the galaxy with an iron fist, he may just use his friends and enemies to further his own plots much like Palpatine did with Anakin Skywalker. A good Inquisitor knows how to play both sides of the field and how to end up on the winning side. Even if they aren’t on your side, there is nothing quite like corrupting them to the dark side. An inquisitor keeps their friends close and their enemies closer, because there is always a chance for an opportunity to advance yourself…or strike them down.
Fans of Darth Maul, Palpatine’s first apprentice, may find it hard to believe he would fit the bill of a Sith Inquisitor. After all, he served only as a hand of his Master, never used Force Lightning, and was more a combatant than a manipulator. But Inquisitors are not all politics; they can be just as deadly assassins as well. For Maul, this role is only alluded to in the movies, but fully expanded upon in novels. As Palpatine’s apprentice, he was the hand that struck against his enemies and moved the pieces into place to ensure his eventual rise to power. He died by Obi-Wan’s hand, but not after taking Qui-Gon Jinn down first.
Maul was a relentless warrior, and went toe-to-toe with Jedi Masters and won from early on in his apprenticeship. But in personality he differed greatly from his Sith Master. Maul needed no political dealings, no allies, and not even any words to taunt his opponents with. His actions spoke for him: Swift, brutal and final. He never showed his face until he believed that those who saw it would be cut down by his blade. In the SWTOR setting, there is far less reason to hide that you are a Sith, but always an opportunity for an assassin in war.
And now for my favorite Inquisitor and Sith Lord, Darth Traya. Also known as Kreia, she accompanied the Jedi Exile during the events of KOTOR 2. She played the role of the mentor to the Exile, guiding her to seek out the ones who were hunting them down, yet all the while putting her own schemes into action using blackmail and even direct threats. Finally, when her plans to convert the Exile to her own ideology failed, she assumed the mantle of Darth Traya to test her student one last time, which led to her death.
Kreia is an excellent example of how, as a Sith, your most dangerous foe can be the one standing next to you as an ally whispering in your ear. Whether as a teacher, a friend or a lover, the ultimate victory is not crushing your enemies beneath your heel as a result of a grand scheme, like Palpatine; nor is it a swift and brutal death as preferred by Maul. The ultimate victory is to turn your enemy to your own cause.
Join us next time when we head back to the Republic to take a look at one of their shady characters: the Smuggler.