Lit Reading NJO...Again

Discussion in 'Literature' started by spicewood, Sep 17, 2017.

  1. Pacified_llama Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 15, 2017
    star 2
    There are some exceptions to the "vague description" phenomenon that occurs throughout the EU.
    Black Fleet Crisis portrayed fleet battles particularly well.

    If in doubt - I've always assumed the New Republic were using a combination of old Rebel Alliance materiel + Star Destroyers.
    And yes, they should have tied in an NJO comic as per @Noash_Retrac - that would of course have been awesome.
  2. Darth Invictus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2016
    star 4
    The NR I think ought not have been using Rebel alliance material at least not to the point of dependency. They did have star dreadnoughts, SSDs, and an actual fleet.

    It's just that in the early years of the war they badly blundered and mishandled the situation. These problems were compounded by the Vong's unfamiliar technology and their ferocity.
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  3. Pacified_llama Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 15, 2017
    star 2
    I tend to agree.



    I was more surprised than not when descriptions of old Alliance ships were given - I could understand that, say, in the X-wing novels - but not much longer, after the retaking of Courscant from Isard.
    The issue is that authors had to distinguish between battles between the Empire/Remnant and Alliance - so they chose to distinguish in descriptive terms. There's also the issue that most writers have an "image" in their head of the good guys, as do the readers as well, of course.
  4. SiouxFan Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 6, 2012
    star 3
    I'll be honest, I don't even try to distinguish a Victory-class from a Carrak-class or any other ship any more. All Star Destroyers are triangular, all Mon Cal cruisers are ovoid, and all Vong vessels are lumpy and mis-shapen.

    Back to the books: I'm re-re-reading Ruin (again, my online library is pretty hit-and-miss with availability, so I'm not reading these in order) and am confused by Luke. He chides Kyp for calling it a 'council of war' when the Jedi meet, makes sure to pay attention to who is siding with who at the meeting, and ends the meeting by declaring that the Jedi will not act aggressively. Then, further in...he and Mara meet Qwi Xux and the two of them (especially Mara) are dismissive of her because she is a pacifist. Luke seems to argue against action to the Jedi, and then FOR action when meeting Ms. Xux. I didn't understand this seeming flip when this book first was out, and I don't get it now.

    Trying to seize the initiative isn't 'dark', and being a pacifist doesn't make one 'soft'. Elegos A'kla knows his attempt is doomed to fail, but his pacifism is remarkable in its strength in this book.
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  5. IneptAphid Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Oct 9, 2017
    Similar situation myself. Started reading Star by Star the other day after a long break from SW books. It's what prompted me to start my account here today. I realised how much the canon and characters mean to me and I got really angry that it has all been basically discarded for this "new canon"..Not happy. Haven't seen the new movies, and i don't plan on it either. Instead I'll just stay here and relive the glory days...fighting the Vong forever :)

    Also i seem to have lost a huge portion of my SW books during a house move :( Need to buy a lot of NJO and all of Legacy of the Force again..

    Regarding books..Star by Star ...I fogot how good it is! So much going on-the strike team, Nom Anor in the Senate, the Fall of Coruscant..and some notable deaths of course.
    I think that is what captured me about NJO. The rules changed. People were no longer safe-the war killed characters, maimed characters, planets fell people were enslaved and tortured..And being written when they were-with what was happening in the world, I think it spoke to people.
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  6. Daneira Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 30, 2016
    star 3
    I understand the point you're trying to make, but a Carrack-class is a light cruiser!

    [IMG]

    (ISD on top, Carrack below)
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  7. SiouxFan Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 6, 2012
    star 3
    ^^^fair enough. But what's the lower-size limit for an aircraft carrier? It seems that every naval ship 'in universe' has a fighter bay.
  8. Daneira Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 30, 2016
    star 3
    Carracks don't have a docking bay. They can hold up to 4 TIEs with an external rack add-on, much like the canon Imperial Gozantis as seen in Rebels.

    Are you thinking of Dreadnaught-class heavy cruisers? Imperial-era Dreadnaughts converted their cargo bay into a hangar for 12 TIEs, but they're 600 meters, almost twice the length of the Carracks.

    Conveniently, there's also a very similar picture of an ISD/Dreadnaught size comparison:
    [IMG]
    Last edited by Daneira, Oct 11, 2017
  9. OutsiderJediSam Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2017
    star 1


    This was one of the biggest issues for me with the entire series. Most of the time, Luke was playing a total pacifist role in spite of the fact that the Vong were trying to wipe out the galaxy. He'd even chastise other Jedi or Republic officials who felt that they needed to fight to save the galaxy. And I'm not okaying all of the Republic's or Kyp's actions, some were too far. However, often, Luke seemed to question fighting at all. That really upset me. But, like you said, then, suddenly, he'd approve or go and commit his own aggressive actions. But then suddenly, he'd flip flop back to not wanting to be engaged at all. It got so tiresome for me.
  10. Darth Invictus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2016
    star 4
    I'd say the Watsonian reason is that Luke was overwhelmed and befuddled by the philosophical problem the Vong posed and so that rendered him acting half blind half tepid most of the time. The Doylist reason is the writers wanted to develop the philosophical issues Luke and Jacen discuss early on in the series.
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  11. OutsiderJediSam Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2017
    star 1


    Oh, I get why that was why he did it within the context the books presented. I even get that it was because the authors were trying to push those philosophical issues between Jacen and Luke. The problem to me is it made Luke look wishy-washy which I don't think helps his character at all. It certainly made me like him less which I don't think is or should be a point in a series where he is the main hero. Plus, and this is just my belief, I never liked the whole philosophical issues in this war. Who cares if the Vong didn't have a Force presence? They were attempting to destroy and enslave the galaxy which means everyone in the NR/GFFA were at risk. Yet, maybe, the Vong shouldn't be fought? Where's that get you? If the Jedi could help save the galaxy from these guys, then they should. They sure helped against the Empire, who did have a presence in the Force. No brainer to me.
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  12. Darth Invictus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2016
    star 4
    Yeah and the Jedi did fight. Jaina and Kyp, Anakin all thought about the war and the Vong in martial terms. Jacen who came to know the Vong on a more intimate psychological and philosophical level was the main reason for their defeat. That was the main lesson of the books-compassion and understanding not martial valor or battle strategies is what won the war.
    Last edited by Darth Invictus, Oct 11, 2017
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  13. OutsiderJediSam Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2017
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    See, I agree that's the story that is attempted to be presented. I don't believe in that story though. It is not wrong to fight against evil. It doesn't make you bad nor is it a "pathway to the dark side" as Luke kept worrying in this series. Jaina, Kyp(sometimes), and Anakin were not in the wrong to fight, and definitely affected the outcome of this war bc of their martial valor. If Jaina had not been such a effective squadron leader, many more would have died and the Vong would have taken more territory and all that affects the outcome of the war. Also, what understanding did Jacen show in the end, and I know we are led to believe he had some big revelation, but what is shown is the GFFA in a major battle above and on Coruscant; Jedi, GFFA, and heretics killing Vong warriors; Luke, Jacen, and Jaina fighting and killing Shimmra and all the slayers bc taking out the head of an evil organization usually helps destroy it. Jacen had some weird fight with Omini at the end where he melted him which is martial valor in reality too. Granted, he did convince the world brain to stop attacking Coruscant, but that's only one part of the final battle. Most of the rest is all martial valor and it's a big reason they won. It's way oversaid and in the end undershown that Jacen/Luke has a new understanding that changes how they actually deal with winning the war. I mean, even the Zonama Sekot inclusion keeps only hinting at concepts about why it's involved. Nothing about that place is ever really answered as to why it is here....just has to be to reacquire it's old people, the Vong.
  14. Pacified_llama Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 15, 2017
    star 2
    A central theme to the NJO is the moral dilemma that in order to defeat evil, one must in turn betray and destroy the evil in one's heart. And to confront the Vong on martial terms was to ignore this dilemma. It was to externalize the conflict.
    Vergere tried to provoke as much from Jacen. She believed it was necessary to go beyond externalizations, to understand what provoked good and evil. What they signified.

    "What is the screen on which light and dark cast their shapes and shadows? Where is the ground on which stands good and evil?”
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  15. Darth Invictus Jedi Knight

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    Aug 8, 2016
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    Precisely-it was a moral deflection to see the war purely in military terms and an abrogation of one's own morals to do things like use alpha red.

    Victory wasn't achieved through cunning or valor as much as it was achieved through moral action, compassionate understanding and dealing with the main problem which is why the Vong were spiritually lost and broken.
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  16. OutsiderJediSam Jedi Youngling

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    Sep 27, 2017
    star 1
    I understand that was what the books were trying to tell us. My question arises though, in that, what about the Empire before the Vong, they were surely evil. Yet, the New Republic/Luke and Jedi didn't have these philosophical issues with destroying said evil often with military terms. So, why is it suddenly so necessary to take this into account now with the Vong??

    I do agree Alpha Red and things like Kyp lying about the worldship do cross the line of what is acceptable.
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  17. Pacified_llama Jedi Padawan

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    Sep 15, 2017
    star 2
    Because they did not have benefit of an easier foe with the Vong. The Empire was defeated through the strength of the Force, as much as anything - the Empire post-ROTJ were also fragmented, almost a petty sort of evil.

    The Jedi could not call upon the Force to defeat the Vong, so they were forced to call upon themselves - and that is where they found themselves most lacking.

    They had never had to stop, to pause and reconsider.
    Last edited by Pacified_llama, Oct 11, 2017
  18. OutsiderJediSam Jedi Youngling

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    Sep 27, 2017
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    I do feel like I need to iterate an extra point here. I do agree the understanding that the warrior caste did not represent ALL Vong was a great and important thing to explore, however, the problem to me was the philosophical issue there seemed to be with should there even be fighting the warrior caste at times. It seemed necessary to me to at least understand the necessity of the GFFA/Jedi to engage the warrior caste to keep them from taking over the galaxy, and like I said, that was often questioned in this series.
  19. OutsiderJediSam Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2017
    star 1
    I understand what you're saying, I just don't see it that way.

    First, I agree that the post-ROTJ empire was more petty. However, why does petty evil allow Jedi to just destroy it without thinking while true evil means one needs to really decide if need to destroy or not?

    Also, the philosophical point of lacking in Force never really worked for me. First, why does that give the Vong the pass on whether they should be confronted or not? If their actions are evil, they are still evil. Who needs the Force to tell them that? I do get your notion of it did make the Jedi introspective of themselves as people instead of Jedi though. I just think the answer to that should be though that they then look around at Han, Wedge, and others and see that as people not Jedi, they still make are able to make judgments on actions of others without the Force consideration.
  20. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 7
    On Alpha Red Triebakk had the best counter-point and was proven right.

    Kyp and the Worldship, however, was a really bad case of authors deliberately screwing over a character.

    It was set up that, somehow, despite being ascendant in the war, superior in power and military offensive, the Vong were utterly unable to evac a worldship and transfer the population to one of the numerous worlds they had captured. Instead they were relying completely on this new ship being built, even though the old one could die at any point killing everyone in it!

    Worldships are not civilian transports, they are system-conquering dreadnaughts - the Vong should have solved their own problems. Denying the enemy material resources is a core military strategy / tactic and a massive Worldship definitely qualifies. Hitting an enemy shipyard, which Sernpidal had become, also qualifies.

    This is what irked me about NJO, it started setting up these strands but then drew away on following them through.

    It was 'let's make Kyp the evil Jedi'. Which is a shame because the idea of a Kyp, who still feels so indebted to Luke and wants to prove to the galaxy he has not forgotten how badly he erred with Exar Kun in defending it against the Vong, even at the cost of all he is, would have been quite interesting. Instead, he got done over from the start and locked in the box 'Jedi Idiot'.
  21. Pacified_llama Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 15, 2017
    star 2
    I think with Kyp, it was the origin story which got the authors in a twist.
    They just didn't have a firm grip on his motivations so they pulled him in a rather simplistic direction - probably because they dismissed him as a character that was only drawn in two dimensions to begin with. He could have expanded out of that. A shame.
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  22. Darth Invictus Jedi Knight

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    Aug 8, 2016
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    World ships are civilian transports though-the Vong civilization inhabited them in its millennia long trek through the void.

    As for action and the Vong that wasn't the point. The empire and even the Sith in legends were an evil that came from and was suffused by the force or at least a certain aspect of it. The Vong seemed alien in that they weren't a part of the Jedi's metaphysical schema? Are they an abomination to be destroyed? An enigma? Or are they in the face evidence our worldview is limited?

    Once Jacen and Luke understood how the Vong fit in the bigger cosmological picture it was possible to understand them and then it was possible to redeem them. Hence winning the war.
  23. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 7
    And the first thing the Vong did with those worldships? Use them for war. You wouldn't have had a story, but with the terraforming ability they had they could have used just about any inhospitable planet - in a galaxy of billions of stars, the idea of there not being enough space for everyone doesn't fly.

    It's obvious why SW doesn't embrace this, but when a story like NJO lays claim to 'realism', certain doors get opened and that's one of them.
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  24. Darth Invictus Jedi Knight

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    Aug 8, 2016
    star 4
    Well the Galaxy is at least in some places pretty densely populated? Could the Vong have settled peacefully? Sure but it wasn't in their culture or nature at that point really.
  25. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 7
    It's a galaxy. It's a massive space we lack the ability to truly comprehend the scale of it, so yeah, there's space enough.

    I still think Legacy did the better job with the Vong - NJO just woussed out and said 'oh, they're redeemed now', but Legacy went into how they truly became so, decades later, only to be met by a particularly vengeful GFFA.
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