Luke Skywalker is the definitive audience surrogate into the Star Wars universe. With lightsabers, Death Stars, the Force, and a guy named Yoda, there are a lot of complicated things to digest when you first get into the Star Wars Saga. That’s why it’s easy to latch onto a normal human teenager who’s just learning about these things when the Saga opens with Episode IV: A New Hope, and thus Luke Skywalker becomes everyone’s hero.
From learning about his Force-abilities to battling the Dark Side, we all pretty much know Luke Skywalker’s history inside and out. We know who his father is, we know who his friends and enemies are, and we know that – as Darth Vader famously said – “The Force is strong with this one.” But what don’t we know about Luke Skywalker?
As it turns out, there’s a whole host of Luke Skywalker’s powers that have been kept hidden from the everyday Star Wars fan. These powers range from Force-aided eccentricities to awesine abilities that have appeared in related Star Wars media over the years. What they all have in common is that – when used properly by Luke Skywalker – they can bring enemies to their knees and make Luke look like the ultimate superhero. So let’s take a look at the 14 Powers You Didn’t Know Luke Skywalker Had.
Sometimes a power is so cool that upon seeing it you have no choice but to scream some type of obscenity. This is that power, because even though you might not have seen it before, just picturing Luke Skywalker grabbing a black hole with his bare hands is enough to cause you to say “What the F***?!”
Taken from the Star Wars book Dark Tide: Onslaught, Luke’s powers in black hole manipulation don’t come without controversy. Still, the book is relatively clear in explaining what Luke Skywalker did; he used the Force to grab onto the black hole that stood in front of him, put all his effort into moving it away from him, and he brought it next to a vehicle which then got sucked straight into it. So, yeah, he grabbed a black hole and caused it to do his dirty work. How’s that for a badass power you didn’t know Luke Skywalker had?
The Star Wars films may make it seem like all there is to battle is swinging around a lightsaber or shooting a blaster at someone, but in (fictional) reality there is quite a lot more to it than that. One of Luke’s more underrated powers actually comes in the field of battle, and it’s one that’s rare (and non-cinematic) enough to be shrugged off by most people.
Luke Skywalker can actually deflect blaster power by using a skill in the Force that he picked up called Form V. With this power – also known as Shien or Djem So – Skywalker is able to deflect fire from a blaster back at the opponent firing. This enables Luke to turn someone else’s weapon against them. Even in a world obsessed with lightsaber tricks and flipping through the air while fighting, there’s something to be said for this simple power being one of the most useful in Luke’s arsenal.
Okay, so we know we just explained how Luke’s coolest power is deflecting blaster fire and that lightsaber tricks shouldn’t be valued so highly in the Star Wars universe, but bear with us; TWO LIGHTSABERS! Maybe it’s just our childish glee speaking and throwing rationality to the wind, but there’s something thrilling about seeing Luke Skywalker utilise the art of Jar’Kai, which is something we barely ever see him do.
Jar’Kai is a complex, dangerous power that Skywalker picked up from many of the other famous and highly skilled Jedi throughout history. While he wasn’t great at it during his first attempt – on his mission to Rodia when he battled a Ghest – he eventually mastered the power and become extremely good at using it. Why we have barely seen it in use in the Star Wars films is another matter entirely. So here’s our message to Disney/Lucasfilm: We demand more dual-lightsaber combat!
There’s nothing cool or sexy about having lots of empathy, which explains why this power doesn’t often get discussed as even existing in the Star Wars Saga. While many people know that it exists, it’s sheer scale, usefulness, or relevance to Luke Skywalker is often glossed over or just simply not cared about by anyone. But – whether you want to admit it or not – Luke Skywalker’s enhanced empathy is actually a big part of who he is, and as a result we have to include it on this list of powers that you didn’t know Luke has.
Deeply rooted in the Force, Skywalker’s empathy is something that enables him to sense other people’s feelings and use that to his advantage. Rather than just having some lame type of empathy that, say, allows him to feel someone’s pain when they get a paper cut, Skywalker’s empathetic powers let him pick up on people’s hidden motivations, feelings, and closely-held secrets. So, yeah, maybe this power shouldn’t be ignored; by Luke’s enemies or fans of really cool Star Wars powers.
A lot can be said about Luke’s intelligence and just how important that intelligence was on his way to saving the galaxy. But to discuss Luke’s universe-saving skills you’d also have to talk about his skills with the Force – which inevitably helped him save the galaxy. And those two things – his skills in the Force and his intelligence tie into one another perfectly – because as it turns out it was Luke’s intelligence that helped him become so proficient in the force; he was almost entirely self-taught.
This power is actually one of the more impressive ones, because while nearly every famous superhero has a mentor of some sort, Luke actually learned the incredibly complex basics of the Force on his own. Sure, Kenobi and Yoda helped him, but those mentors were sporadically helpful at best, and dead at worst. Most of the time, Luke Skywalker just went about learning all the ins and outs of the Force, always trying to better himself and learn Force-aided abilities that hadn’t been attempted or carried out in centuries. And, because he’s Luke Skywalker and the Force is strong with him, he succeeded.
Force-sense is a complex power, and – like many on this list – it’s one that gets more attention in any Star Wars media that isn’t the core films. While most casual Star Wars fans understand that the Force is some type of ancient and almost limitlessly powerful entity, the nuances surrounding it – and the powers associated with it – are often a confusing blur. So let’s clarify – if the Force is like flying through the air, then Luke Skywalker’s ability to Force-sense is like being able to do flips, read-minds, and shoot a gun all while in mid-flight. What we’re saying is; Force-sense is a super cool power-within-a-power.
Having developed the power while on Dagobah with Yoda, Luke Skywalker is able to use Force-sense to tap into the Force and determine when someone else is in danger or pain. The power works from up to 10,000 light years away, and can come in handy when you see a loved-one in mortal danger and need to jet off to save them in the nick of time. While this is powerful enough on its own, those who are masters of Force-sense can use it to spot others without using their own senses at all, essentially meaning that Luke and other Jedi have a sixth sense that is incredibly useful in battle and dangerously underestimated in every other scenario.
Experts in strategy tend to know that the best way to gain the upper-hand in any given scenario is to not reveal that you are an expert in strategy. By keeping your strategic mastery a secret it makes sense that you can then use that strategic mastery to your advantage, surprising everyone by coming up with a kick-ass plan to defeat your enemy or accomplish your goal.
Therefore it stands to reason that – despite Luke Skywalker being one of the great masters of strategy in the galaxy – not a lot of people would know about it. But look no further for proof than Luke’s own plan to bring down the AT-ATs with tow cables, as well as his daring plan to rescue Han Solo from Jabba’s Palace. What followed since young Luke’s initial brushes with strategic brilliance was a career as the one and only Jedi Grand Master filled with outwitting and outmanoeuvring everyone with strategies both brilliantly simple and dangerously complex.
Although it may look like ghosts pop up all over Star Wars like it’s no big deal, to actually become a Force ghost after your death is incredibly rare. There are only a few known Jedi who possess the power; Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda being among them. However, what’s equally as rare is the ability to see and communicate with a Force ghost; something that Luke Skywalker can do and most others can’t.
Luke has shown a skill for communicating with the dead on many different occasions, most notably when he spoke to Kenobi just before facing the Dark Lord in battle. Although Luke’s powers don’t allow him to physically interact with the dead, there’s still no shortage of situations when one may find communication with a deceased mentor or friend incredibly useful. And while Skywalker may not be able to convince the dead to fight his battles or do his bidding, a simple bit of instruction during battle – such as Kenobi’s “run” – can still constitute this being a power well worth having.
Let’s not get into the thorny issue of who shot first and instead talk about why anyone in Star Wars is shooting at all, especially when you consider just how bad everyone’s aim is. In every Star Wars movie it would seem that everyone – specifically Stormtroopers – just don’t know how to fire a blaster at all, with shots ricocheting off everywhere and no one ever getting hit in any meaningful way despite how close they might be to the person doing the shooting.
That’s why Luke Skywalker’s ability to actually aim is something that should be considered nothing short of miraculous, and it’s one of the best superpowers that someone in the Star Wars universe could have at their disposal. While we all know about Luke’s impossible shot during the Battle of Yavin that managed to destroy the Death Star, what many seem to take for granted is just how good of a shot Luke is at all other times; especially when considering the aim of literally everyone else. And, yes, that includes Han Solo.
Let’s face it, when it comes to ridding the world of evil, Luke Skywalker doesn’t exactly do it in as stylish a way as, say, Spider-Man or Batman. Sure, he can pilot ships and wield a lightsaber like a badass, but he doesn’t exactly jump from buildings and land on people. The disappointing thing about all of that, however, is the fact that he can.
Yep, if Luke Skywalker really wanted to show off he could out-jump, out-flip, and out-pounce even the most famous caped crusaders. Utilising his skills in the Force, Skywalker is able to do all sorts of crazy acrobatics that you can’t even imagine. A simple jump – with the aid of his mind and the Force – can turn into mid-air tricks that he can precisely control however he wants. He jump off a tall structure and he can land with pinpoint accuracy, all thanks to the way he is able to essentially levitate himself using the Force.
It’s a shame Luke Skywalker is such a good guy, because if he were even a little bit bad he could be one of the greatest villains the world has ever seen. With all of his powers – premonition included – we have no doubts that Luke would be a nearly unstoppable force.
With this in mind consider Luke’s powers of premonition, an incredibly rare gift that only the most powerful users of the Force have been able to conjure up in all of history. When his ability to have visions that can show him the future first materialized, Skywalker didn’t exactly know what to do with it. However, once mastering it and realizing that it’s considered one of the greatest Force powers possible, Luke harnessed his premonitions and used them to guide him in matters of strategy and war. But, like we said, he could have just as easily used them to obtain deadly power.
On second thought, his dad already tried that. It didn’t work out that well for him.
We’ve already explained just how smart Skywalker is, but to really understand his level of intelligence we need to discuss how he came upon levitation. While the power is fairly common among skilled Force users, no one taught Luke Skywalker how to levitate objects or even that such a thing was possible. Instead, he discovered the principle of telekinesis when he was dismantling Huuilk’s lightsaber in order to figure out how it worked.
From there, Luke Skywalker reverse-engineered the trickier workings of the Force and figured that he could manipulate objects using his mind and cause them to levitate. From there he famously levitated a noodle and a fork before eventually moving on to bigger objects; as Yoda once did with the X-Wing in the swamp. Although there’s no evidence that Luke became as skilled in levitation as Yoda was, it’s still worth noting this power as it further adds to the simple fact: Luke Skywalker is basically a super-powered magician.
You might not think that a lowly teenager from a desert moisture farm such as Luke Skywalker has any powers that he didn’t luck into through the Force. After all, it takes a very special and often highly trained kind of superhero to have powers in addition to those that they were gifted (or cursed) with. However, Luke – he who is a speaker of Galactic Basic and most likely didn’t run into anyone speaking anything else in his youth – knows a thing or two about languages.
Though Luke’s linguistic skills have no doubt come a long way since his childhood on Tatooine, perhaps his most impressive feat is being able to understand Chewbacca. Luke – by virtue of only spending a short amount of time with him before the Battle of Yavin – was able to decipher Chewbacca’s language based on his mood, expression, and tone. From there he worked as an interpreter and loyal ally to the fuzzy Wookiee that everyone can’t help but love.
There are some heroes for whom flight (be it self-aided or through the use of technology) is one of their defining abilities. Be it Hal Jordan or Superman, flying is often a big deal. That’s not exactly the case with Luke Skywalker, who just so happens to be one of the galaxy’s best pilots. And that’s on top of everything else that he can do – not that he’d go around bragging about it.
Often regarded as an expert pilot no matter the type of aircraft he’s put in control of, Luke Skywalker is well-known for evading Darth Vader and destroying the Death Star while in mid-flight. Whether he’s piloting an Imperial Lamda-class T-4a shuttle or destroying an Interdictor cruiser while in control of the Desert Jewel, there’s no doubting that Skywalker’s power of flight is one that has saved his life – and the lives of his crew – on countless occasions.
Which of these powers were you most surprised to find out about? Let us know in the comments either way!