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Narrative Problems with the Force: Does anyone feel the same?

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I have been away from Star Wars for quite awhile but recently with Lorerunners Lorerun and the upcoming movie I decided to go back through some of the Star Wars stories and games which I enjoyed in preparation for the for what is to come.

Unfortunately I found that I do not enjoy the Star Wars setting anymore because it is incredibly inconsistent and stupid. Now hear me out, the majority of what has to do with the races and technology can be just considered nitpicks and does not bother me. In the end there are very few settings where inconsistencies are not present.

The stories which I enjoy most are the ones which are self consistent and have very strong "Star Wars" feel. Especially KOTOR series of games I still think are outstanding achievement for Star Wars and gaming as a whole.

However what really bothers me, is the many interpretations of the force or the fact that there is none. As was mentioned many times before me, the force in the original movies is very vague. And It doesnt seem to me that George Lucas has an understanding of force before it changes all the time in all media. In Clone Wars, TV series which i have been rewatching recently, the force is magic. The force is literally magic. What some people do with the force is restructuring space and time around themselves and forcing evolution on the body and creating objects out of thin air etc etc.

To me this is more than nitpicking, this is a fundamental flaw in all of star wars, force becoming magic. The fact that there is no concrete explanation of the force everybody takes on their own interpretation and poorer writers in terms of skill turn the force into a mcguffin.

Recent episode I watched in Clone Wars was Season 3 Monsters. The episode is all about the "fall" of Savage Opress and in under a minute from protecting his brother and being willing to sacrifice his own life for his brothers, he goes to killing him and embracing the dark side. Yet the way he "embraces" the force is nighsisters metaphysically changing him trhough the force. His horns grow and he suddenly wakes up looking more like Arnold Schwarzenegger.

This pulls me out of the Star Wars setting and nagers me, because i have a lot of old fond memories of Star Wars. Also in other settings this is almost impossible to do, for example, Mass Effect Eezo serves as the tool through which the impossible is possible. However Eezo is grounded in fictious science. Eezo cannot be used to grow wings.

Rant over.

Forgive for that wall of text, this "problem" just bothered me and I wondered what everyone else thinks about it and whether anybody shares this opinion or its just me.

So, what do you all think about?

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Just ignore this. Have no idea how it happened twice. Sorry about it.

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I interpreted that scene as the nightsisters corrupting the force with their own form of magic. It's been about a year since I've watched it, so my memory could be clouded.

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Thats partially my problem. If its not force than its magic and they call it magic and it just doesnt have a place in star wars.
Force is not grounded in anything, so the basic thing which every star wars story should get right is the easiest one to get wrong, because nobody, not even its creator seems to know what it is. I get the feeling that Lucas tried doing it with medichlorians, but it creates more problems than it solves.
The setting to me, because of that, seems like a playground where everybody just does whatever they want and its not even their fault that some aspects of it are bad in the context of the in-universe perspective.

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Actually I couldn't disagree with you more.

One thing you are forgetting, or just don't like, is that the interpretations of the Force vary within the setting itself. What works for the Nightsisters, who make extensive use of ancient Sith Sorcery and Sith Alchemy, won't necessarily work for the Jedi who purposely limit this kind of research because they consider it wrong, immoral, and a path to the dark side (which they are fundamentally opposed to for practical and philosophical reasons). But more importantly, this difference is what makes the Force magical to me from a meta point-of-view--whatever you can conceive, whatever your preferences for what the Force is and how it should be used, the setting has you covered.

You think the Force should be approached in a highly ethical and academic way? You have the Jedi.

You want more of an evil sorcerer archetype? You have the Sith like Palpatine and the Force traditions like the Nightsisters.

You want a blend of Jedi and Sith teachings with a focus on protecting the people of your home world? The Jensaari.

You want a focus on telekinetics outside of the Jedi/Sith paradigm? You have the Zeison Sha.

And on and on and on. It's beautiful man.

So no, I don't think its a problem. It's an elegant solution to a shared universe and its magical not-magic super powers.

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I get your point. In star wars (especially in the EU) the force can do just about anything. The life force of everything in the universe is extremely vague when you consider how people in the universe actually use the force. Create wormholes in empty space (this actually happened)? The Force. Levitate (this actually happened)? The Force. Teleport (this actually happened) ? The Force. Transfer life energy to one another (this actually happened). The Force. Turn a rabbit into a 16ft monster? Sith Alchemy I.E. The Force.

Its seems like the writers endlessly dance around what the limits to the force are. But what happens when something mystical happens that doesn't involve the force. Is it a perversion of the force? We don't know. All evidence we know points to the latter until magic was introduced.

Would Darth Nihilus know about the cults of witches on Dathomir? Would he even be affected by magic?

Oh wait, alchemy and wounds aren't canon so I guess that partially answers my question.

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@Kolson Wezrae
I will argue that there should be limits to the force which in EU there doesnt seem any. And my problem is more than different force sensitives approaching force different. The difference in philosphy behind the force between the Jedi, the Nightsisters, the sith is fascinating world building and extremely interesting. My problem is when the Nightmother creates things out of thin air. Or when Vitiate tries to use extremely hockey fantasy plot (which admittedly isnt that well written in the first place).

I have no problem with the sorcerer like usage of the force by the sith or more controlled and normal usage of the force by the jedu, I have a problem when they use the force to bend the laws of physics and logic. What are the limits of the force? How does it work? Are there no limits?

Weirdly enough I have no problem with Nihilus. Whatever Nihilus is, seems to make sense in-universe (to me at least) that through his extreme anger and hunger he was able to feed on the force and become whatever he became (a wound in the force).

@TheSterlingZ
Sith Alchemy as a super advanced form of genetic manipulation and cross breeding I can buy. But creating worlmholes in empty space? I didnt know that it actually happened. Its weird.

Also if medichlorians exist and they only exist in biological beings, than shouldnt the force only affect living beings and have little to no effect on everything else. Or are they like transmitters which channel comsic force into the hosts body?

I say, I propose, that somebody at disney sits down and writes a guideline for what the force is. Make it still mysterious and do not explain it. Have different people think about it differently leading to difference of philosphy, but have some constraints to it. Dont turn it into a solution to everything if need be. One force user probably can levitate a star destroyer if he is strong enough, but he cant cause it to disappear into thin air. And what with weird celestial force users from the planet Mortis?

Ah, but what do I know, i am just a random person from the internet.

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Here is how Yoda explains the Force to Luke:

Life creates it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us and binds us. Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter. You must feel the Force around you; here, between you, me, the tree, the rock, everywhere, yes. Even between the land and the ship.

From that wen can pretty much conclude the following:

- The Force can create life
- It can manipulate matter
- The Force has a form of energy from which it may have to be distinguished
- The Force's energy surrounds all matter (organic or inorganic)
- All matter (organic or inorganic) is connected through the Force's energy

In that sense, it makes sense for writers to branch out and do all kinds of things with it. If the Force has the power to manipulate matter, if it has an energy that envelops all existing matter, if it can reach all existing matter through that energy and if conscious beings can reach into that energy and connect to the force and other matter through it, then basically everything is possible.

The way I see it, the Force is essentially the natural potential of consciousness to transcend physical boundaries by connecting with an energy that connects everything. That can mean manipulating matter beyond physical boundaries (force grip, force lightning) or preserving consciousness without physical boundaries (force ghost) for example. The Force connects everything, consciousness or not, but only consciousness can reach the Force and therefore transcend physical boundaries.

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