Revan: mastering both sides of the Force

Also known as Darth Revan, Revan is undoubtedly one of the most iconic characters in the Star Wars universe. And with good reason: he’d been on both sides of the Force before becoming a hero of the Old Republic. A destiny that fascinates fans of the saga. So, even though his story takes place long before the first part of the opus, the tragic tale of this Jedi Knight is fascinating to many. A look back at the life of this exciting character.

Key points in the story of Revan from Stars Wars

Darth Revan has been on many journeys in his life. Nevertheless, there are five key facts in its history:

  • Revan’s involvement in the Mandalorian Wars: Revan was the first Jedi to support the Republic in this war, despite the Jedi Council’s initial stance against it. He later became the leader of the Revanchists (Jedi and Republic soldiers).
  • The Battle of Malachor V (3960 BBY): Revan led Republic troops to victory in this battle, killing Mandalore the Ultimate. It would, however, result in the sacrifice, deemed necessary by Revan, of many soldiers and Jedi.
  • Revan’s position in the Sith Empire: Darth Revan’s encounter with the Sith and his sinking into the Dark Side made him the Dark Lord of the Sith.
  • The character’s unique understanding of the Force: Revan remains legendary for his exceptional mastery of both sides of the Force.
  • Revan’s key role in the Great Galactic War : Revan’s understanding of both sides of the Force was a key factor in the war between the Republic and the Sith Empire. Indeed, this will enable him to put the Emperor to the sword on many occasions. He even played a key role in securing the Treaty of Coruscant, thanks to his link with the Emperor’s spirit.

The origin of the legendary Old Republic hero in Revan

The fascination with the Star Wars character of Revan begins at birth. So far, we don’t know exactly where this Jedi hero was born. Legend has it that he was born somewhere on an Outer Rim planet around 3994 BBY.

Revan ‘s story can only really be traced back to his Jedi training under Jedi Master Kreia. And here again, versions of their meeting differ. Some say Kreia met him on his home planet. Others say it was Revan himself who went to meet his future mentor. So the mystery remains complete, making this character even more mystical for fans.

Interesting fact

Revan seems to have always been keen to remain discreet about his identity. When he joined the Jedi Order, he got used to keeping his face hidden under his cape. Later, he would even don his mythical mask.

Revan and his link to the force

From their very first meeting, Kreia saw great potential in Revan. The young Padawan not only possessed uncommon power and connection with the Force, but also showed a great thirst for knowledge.

It’s a trait that will drive him to continually surpass himself throughout his life, but a character that will also bring him a few worries as he explores the various paths of the Force.

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Revan’s entry into the Jedi Order

Revan spent much of his Jedi training with Master Kreia. Although he has always maintained a veil of mystery over his identity, he remains committed to his training. His thirst for knowledge drove him to see other Jedi Masters when he felt he had learned all he had to learn from Kreia. He followed the teachings of Zhar Lestin, Arren Kae and Master Dorak.

Revan’s power aroused admiration among his peers. Among them is Alek Squinquargesimus (future Darth Malak), another Jedi Padawan he meets on his travels, and who becomes his faithful companion. Later, Revan would even consider him his apprentice.

Revan the Revanchist

The episode that forever marked Revan’s destiny was undoubtedly the War between the Mandalorians and the Galactic Republic in 3976 BBY. Indeed, when this conflict was announced, Revan and his friend Alec decided to defy the Jedi Council. The latter had refused to get involved in the fight, despite the Republic’s request for support and their oath. He even forbade any Jedi to take part in the war, claiming a neutral stance in what was considered a political conflict.

In the eyes of the Council, the Exar Kun War (or Great Sith War), thirty years earlier, had cost them too much. For them, the Jedi’s priority for the time being was to focus on fighting the Dark Side of the Force.

A vision that didn’t match Revan’s, driven by justice and empathy. He and Alec refused to deny any more of the principles upheld by the Republic. They decided to go to war, despite the Council’s position. Their motivation was simple: to protect the people of the Republic and avenge the millions who died in this tragedy. This marks the birth of Revan the Revanchist and his crusade against Mandalore the Ultimate and his troops.

Interesting fact

It was during the Mandalorian War that Revan obtained his mask. Contrary to certain beliefs, its legendary accessory originally belonged to a Mandalorian soldier who died in battle at Cathars, and not to Mandalore the Ultimate.

The mask Revan recovered from Mandalore the Ultimate after their battle at Malachor V will be hidden on the lost planet Rekkad.

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Revan’s initiation to the different paths of the Force: the beginning of the shift to the Dark Side

Legend has it that during their exploration of the ways of the Force, Revan and Alec decided to familiarize themselves with the teachings of the Dark Side, the side of Vader and Maul. While the original aim of this research remains the understanding of their adversary, the end result will be quite different. Indeed, the two friends eventually became Sith Lords. But what were the premises for such a shift?

The birth of Darth Revan

Revan and his faithful companion Alec’s switch to the Dark Side didn’t happen overnight. Indeed, it was while pursuing the last Mandalorian survivors in the Unknown Regions that the two friends met the Risen Sith Empire. They discovered that some Sith had indeed survived the Great Sith War. They are even behind the war waged by the Magalorians in their conquest of the Galaxy.

Faced with this new situation, Revan and Alec (who became Malak during the Mandalorian War) decided to learn the arcane knowledge needed to face their future enemies. They then travel to the planet of the Sith Emperor Vitiate, where they clash. The latter, much more powerful than they’d hoped, corrupts their minds and turns them to the Dark Side.

The two former Jedi are then indoctrinated to become fearsome agents capable of destroying the Republic. But that’s without taking into account Revan’s determination to act on his own behalf. He managed to free himself from the spell with Malak.

Darth Revan and Alec (Darth Malak): a tragic friendship?

Despite their liberation from the Emperor’s spell, Revan and Malak continued to evolve in the Risen Sith Empire with a precise plan in mind: to set out for galactic domination. But on their own account, and not under that of the “real Sith”. Revan then proclaimed himself Dark Sith Lord: Darth Revan. His friend and apprentice takes the name of Darth Malak. They then set off in search of the stellar maps that led to a weapon of immeasurable power: the Stellar Forge.

During their journey, Revan and Malak managed to seize the Forge. They produce numerous ships by feeding it with the Dark Side of the Force. Their appearance with this huge fleet marks the return of Revan. Many of his followers and former Jedi warriors will join him in his quest. They accompany him to the Sith Academy on Korriban, where they settle in and learn about the Dark Side of the Force.

But not everyone is happy about this comeback. The Jedi Council, seeing what has become of the heroes of the war, puts a plan in place. They send Jedi to the Forge to neutralize Darth Revan. While the latter is fighting his former companions, Malak betrays him and attacks his ship, hoping to destroy it.

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Revan’s return to the Light Side

Revan returns to the Light Side after the Battle of the Star Forge, where he meets his future wife, Bastila Shan. Since he was betrayed by his apprentice Darth Malak, it was the latter, leading the Jedi, who attacked the Forge and saved him from death. She will then take him to the safety of the Jedi Council. The latter then decided to reprogram his mind and reintroduce him to the Jedi teachings in order to confront his former friend.

Gradually regaining his memory, Revan set out to destroy the Stellar Forge. He then confronts his former apprentice and kills him. This victory and the destruction of the Forge mark his true return to the Light Side of the Force.

On numerous occasions during his travels, Revan opposed Emperor Vitiate on behalf of the Jedi. He was even imprisoned by the latter in Maelström prison. Vitiate constantly tried to corrupt his mind for 300 years before the Jedi were able to free him.

Interesting fact

Revan was already powerful as a Jedi Knight, but will become even more so as Darth Raven. Even his return to the Light Side resulted in an exponential increase in his power: he now understood both sides of the Force and could take advantage of them.

Revan’s place in the Star Wars universe

Aside from his famous mask, which shrouds the character in a veil of mystery, Revan’s popularity lies in his background and power.

Revan is best known in the extended Star Wars universe. He made his first appearance in the video game Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. He is also mentioned in the second volume of the game: Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2 – The Sith Lords . He also appears in the games “The Old Republic” and “Heroes of the Galaxy”.

Apart from that, the Knights of the Old Republic comics also feature other works referring to the Old Republic in the Expanded Universe. The visual guide for Star Wars Episode IX: Skywalker’s Ascension marks the character’s entry into the main Star Wars universe.

Did you know?

Fans have created two films in which Revan appears, demonstrating the character’s great popularity: Sith Wars Ep II – The Legacy Of The Sith (2022) and Broken Souls (2015).


What color is Raven’s sword?

The color of Revan’s lightsaber before he turned to the Dark Side is not known. We do know, however, that his saber was red when he was a Sith, and purple when he returned to the Light Side. 

Why did Revan die twice?

Revan was first killed at the Foundry by two Sith, but resurrected four years later as an incomplete version of himself. On his return, the Emperor also created a corrupted version of himself, thanks to the hold he’d been able to exert on his mind during his imprisonment. It is by absorbing this dark version that he makes peace with his two sides before disappearing completely, signing his second death.