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The Most Powerful ‘Star Wars’ Characters, Ranked

Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christiansen), Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson), Count Dooku (Christopher Lee), Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), and Kylo Ren (Adam Driver)

One of the major themes in Star Wars has always been the fight between good and evil. Those who are Force-sensitive have a choice to either use their powers for good or yield to the dark side. Most of these characters are divided into Jedi, the protagonists of Star Wars, or Sith, the antagonists who glorify the dark side of the Force. While some non-Jedi and non-Sith have become powerful, it is mostly those with the strongest connection to the Force who accumulate the most power.

While the most formidable characters in the franchise are Force-sensitive, some manage to surpass others with unique Force powers, mastery of lightsaber combat, or superior intellect and tactical skills. With that in mind, here are the 10 most powerful Star Wars characters, ranked.

10. Kylo Ren

Adam Driver as Kylo Ren holding a red lightsaber in Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) is one of the main antagonists in the Star Wars sequel trilogy and aided Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis) in establishing the First Order. However, despite embracing the dark side, Ren is not a Sith. As for powers, he is very good at telekinesis and probing minds to extract information. Ren also demonstrates a good deal of control over his own mind, managing to even mislead Snoke about his true intentions in The Last Jedi. Plus, he is an adept fighter, able to suspend blaster bolts in midair, paralyze others, and even survive the blow of a bowcaster.

Despite these strengths, Ren becomes weaker as the films progress due to the emotional toll of killing his father and gravitating away from the dark side of the force—his main source of power. This is why Rey (Daisy Ridley) is ultimately able to defeat him.

9. Obi-Wan Kenobi

Ewan McGregor as Ben Kenobi in Obi-Wan Kenobi

Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) is a legendary Jedi who trained Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen) and served as a mentor to Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill). His skills are so great that he managed to beat both Anakin and Darth Maul (Ray Park) in battle, the latter of whom he defeated while still a Padawan. Kenobi likely would have bested Ren in battle, even though he doesn’t boast the same level of raw power. He’ve never been one for grand displays of power using the Force, but he is an extremely skilled duelist. What Obi-Wan lacks in raw power, he makes up for in intelligence and wisdom, giving him an edge over those with less control over their emotions.

8. Rey

Daisey Ridley as Rey in Star Wars: The Last Jedi

The Star Wars sequel trilogy worked hard to establish Rey (Daisy Ridley) as one of the most powerful Jedis of her time. The main evidence of her powers comes from how quickly she masters the Force. At times, she is even seen using her powers with no training, such as when she turns Kylo’s mind probe against him. With minimal training, Rey masters levitation, telekinesis, and Force lightning. Plus, she is part of a Force dyad with Ren, which is considered a bond more powerful than life itself.

However, Rey’s lack of experience is a limitation. For example, she struggles to defeat Ren and only succeeds in doing so when he is greatly weakened. Her defeat of Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) is similar, as his power in the sequel trilogy has been significantly diminished from what it was in the prequels.

Rey is a fast learner and has some very unique skills with the Force, but she doesn’t have the experience to take on someone like Luke or Mace Windu.

7. Supreme Leader Snoke

Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis) sits on his throne in 'Star Wars: Episode 8 - The Last Jedi'

Supreme Leader Snoke was bio-engineered by Palpatine to aid in carrying out his nefarious plans. Snoke was far more powerful than his apprentice, Kylo Ren, making him a formidable foe against the likes of Rey. His telekinesis and mind-probing abilities were so powerful that even Rey couldn’t resist them as she had with Ren. Snoke could also summon Force lightning and utilize the power of the Force across great distances. However, he was not as powerful as his creator, Palpatine, and some of the strength he demonstrated may have even come from Palpatine, who was controlling and manipulating Snoke without Snoke’s knowledge.

6. Count Dooku

Christopher Lee as Count Dooku in Star Wars Revenge of the Sith

Count Dooku (Christopher Lee) was a powerful Sith lord trained by the legendary Yoda before turning to the dark side. He was so sure of his powers that he even declared himself the most powerful Jedi of all time. Count Dooku was adept at telekinesis, mind control, levitation, Force-choking, and lightsaber battle. He could also utilize Force lightning and deflect Force attacks without his lightsaber. Plus, he had a high level of intelligence and tactical skills, making him a fantastic duelist. Dooku unfortunately lacked the level of raw strength that others on this list have, and his advanced age and arrogance didn’t help him, either.

5. Darth Sidious

Ian McDiarmid as Darth Sidious in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

Darth Sidious is one of the most powerful Sith lords in the Star Wars franchise. He was the mastermind behind the fall of the Galactic Republic and the Clone Wars and trained Darth Vader. Sidious later resurfaced in an attempt to establish the New Order through Snoke after the Galactic Empire’s fall. He has an extremely powerful connection to the dark side and has Force lighting, telekinesis, levitation, and mind control abilities. Sidious can also drain the life force from others, and has even dabbled in Sith magic by producing illusions. While at one time he was almost considered to be Yoda’s equal, he was eventually surpassed in power by the Skywalkers.

4. Mace Windu

Samuel L. Jackson as Mace Windu in Revenge of the Sith

Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson) is one of the most powerful characters in Star Wars thanks to his lightsaber skills. Windu is adept at the Force, easily harnessing the abilities of telekinesis and mind control. He also uniquely uses the Force to enhance his speed, durability, and agility. However, his real power comes from being one of the greatest duelists in the franchise. He is a practitioner of Form VII, the highest form of lightsaber combat a Jedi can master. It is so powerful that many Jedi who practice it fall to the dark side. However, Windu managed to master it without turning, making him one of the only Jedi in history to do so. With his moderate Force powers and extreme lightsaber skills, he’s bested even those with such raw power as Darth Sidious in duels.

3. Yoda

Frank Oz as Yoda in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

Yoda (Frank Oz) is a Jedi Grand Master who trained Luke Skywalker. He is an accomplished lightsaber fighter, having mastered the sixth form of lightsaber combat, and his knowledge of and connection to the Force are paralleled by very few. Yoda is a master of telekinesis, Force deflection, Stonepower, Force lightning, Force flames, and resistance to mind probing and illusions. Yoda is also unique in that he could monitor and detect other Jedi who lived by the light side and was able to detect the emotional states and lies of those around him. Yoda held his own in a fight against Darth Sidious, trained one of the greatest Jedi of all time, and has long been the wisest figure in the Star Wars franchise.

2. Luke Skywalker

Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi

As the son of Darth Vader, Luke was trained by Yoda and became one of the most powerful Jedi of all time. Like his father, he boasts a nearly unheard-of connection to the Force which allows him to complete impressive feats. He boasts many of the same skills as Yoda, including strong telekinesis, the ability to sense others in the Force, and mind control. But Luke also has accomplished some things that were previously thought impossible: He destroyed the Death Star and used the Force to project his image across a great distance to distract Kylo Ren. He is one of very few Jedi to succeed in wholly making himself one with the Force.

1. Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader

Hayden Christiansen as Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith

As the prophesied Chosen One, Darth Vader’s Force powers are second to none. He’s skilled in lightsaber combat, having mastered the fifth form, but his true strength came from raw, unbridled Force power. His telekinesis alone could stop AT-ATs and AT-DPs in their tracks, crush engines, and even bring entire ships from the sky to the ground and tear them apart. He could also perform very meticulous tasks with telekinesis, like repairing his cybernetic limbs and manipulating objects without using his hands—or while engaged in a lightsaber battle. Few have rivaled him in Force choke, Force jump, and mind probe abilities, and no one could rival the sheer level of power he demonstrated in every skill he mastered.

(featured image: Disney / The Mary Sue)

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Rachel Ulatowski is an SEO writer for The Mary Sue, who frequently covers DC, Marvel, Star Wars, YA literature, celebrity news, and coming-of-age films. She has over two years of experience in the digital media and entertainment industry, and her works can also be found on Screen Rant and Tell-Tale TV. She enjoys running, reading, snarking on YouTube personalities, and working on her future novel when she's not writing professionally. You can find more of her writing on Twitter at @RachelUlatowski.