- Spencer Crilly
Character spotlight: Kyle Katarn
Kyle Katarn was a human year old male from the planet Sulon. He began his life as an Imperial Stormtrooper who eventually defected to the Rebellion. He was partnered often with the smugger Jan Ors whom with he performed my covert missions for the Rebel Alliance and eventually the New Republic after the Battle of Endor, which included the sabotage of the Dark Trooper project.
Kyle later discovered through the Jedi Master Qu Rahn that he was Force sensitive and was one of the few known self-taught Jedi, and his training occurred greatly while he searched for the Valley of the Jedi. He confronted, and defeated the Dark Jedi Jerec and his 6 other Dark Jedi. Eventually, Kyle went on to become a Jedi Master and taught at Luke Skywalkers Jedi Academy on Yavin IV. Some notable students were Mara Jade, Jaden Korr, and Rosh Penin. Kyle also participated in the Empire Reborn movement, and the Ragnos Crisis. He participated in the Yuuzhan Vong War and Second Galactic Civil War as a part of the Jedi High Council in the New Jedi Order.
Kyle Katarn was well able to use a variety of weapons. Due to his training at the Imperial Academy, he was usually able to use any weapon he would come across in the field without any time to learn how the weapon operated. His two main weapons however, were a byor pistol, (which was given to him by his father, Morgan Katarn) and his lightsaber.
Kyle has wielded at least 3 lightsabers in his lifetime. His first was a green bladed weapon used by Qu Rahn, when that weapon was destroyed by the Dark Jedi Boc, Kyle used the yellow bladed lightsaber (although later it seemed to be an orange blade) used by another Dark Jedi named Yun, who died trying to save Kyle’s life. His final lightsaber was a blue bladed weapon that had a longer hilt and two handgrips.
Kyle Katarn, although mostly self-taught, Kyle became one of the most respected members of the New Jedi Order and one of the most powerful force users as well. Kyle had knowledge in Force protection, Force absorption, Force speed, and would intermix Force push and Force pull in his attacks. Kyle also had knowledge in dark side powers Force Grip, and Force Lightning. Kyle Katarn had the philosophy of:
“Abilities aren’t inherently good or evil, it’s how you use them.” -Kyle Katarn, Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy.
Kyle was a master of the 5th form of lightsaber combat Djem So. He also was known to use Shii-Cho and Ataru. He would eventually become the Battlemaster of the New Jedi Order which is surprising considering the fact that he was mostly self-taught in lightsaber combat.
My story with Kyle Katarn goes back to Christmas of 2002. I received Dark Forces II Jedi Knight that year and when I first played the game, I was blown away by it. I loved the idea of finding another Star Wars story that took place after the movies, (I had discovered the Young Jedi Knights series that same year 3 month earlier.) I also loved playing the adventure through a first-person perspective. I loved to pretend that I was Kyle Katarn and that I got to immerse myself in the Star Wars universe, and the idea of wielding a lightsaber through first person made my young self more happy than waking up to toys under the tree that morning.
From that point on, I wanted more Kyle Katarn in the Expanded Universe. I bought the novellas and the comic book he was featured in. And of course I loved playing the other three video games he was featured in, but there just wasn’t enough of him.
When I guest starred on Matt Wilkins’ podcast, Princes of the Universe, I did mention a couple of times I wanted more of Kyle Katarn and I mentioned how much I admired the character. I do think he should have had his own novel and if I ever had the possibility to write a novel, I would love to write one about Mysteries of the Sith, Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy or a novel of him during the Second Galactic Civil War.
This guy is often considered the Chuck Norris of the Star Wars Universe and if he is going to carry that title, he should have more. However, the material we have is great for what it is. I do have particular stories I love more than others, there is no doubt that Kyle Katarn is an awesome character