The dark side of the force is where the action is at. While most dark force users have a few marbles missing, there’s no denying that most of us are secretly attracted to the power they wield. Though there are plenty of extremely powerful Sith in the Star Wars Universe, it's time to take a look at the other dark side users who can be just as awesome and powerful.
Dark force users usually lack certain social skills (Palpatine excluded) which ironically pushes them to be some of the most powerful force users. Anakin Skywalker is a perfect example of what can happen if you try to keep an introvert down when they’re destined for more. Add some classic manipulation into the mix and boom ─ Darth Vader is born.
Some of these dark force users may seem unfamiliar to you, as the Star Wars Universe is quite large. However, each of them can hold their own in battle and have passed our strenuous tests to make the cut. Think you already know who landed the number one spot? Time to think again.
So fire up that Jabba hookah and break out the blue milk as we divulge into the 20 Most Powerful Dark Force Users In The Star Wars Universe, Ranked.
20 Mara Jade
Before she took on the last name of Skywalker, Mara Jade was a ruthless killer for hire. Born on a mysterious planet with no name, she was discovered by Palpatine shortly after he had made himself Emperor.
Sidious sensed that Mara was strong in the force and took her to be trained as an assassin. As she entered her teen years, Jade’s skills rapidly excelled and she was appointed to the elite position of the Emperor's Hand. Tasked with assisting Vader in killing stray Jedi, Mara only did as Darth Sidious instructed her to.
The Emperor’s final command to her came through the force as he fell to his death: “Kill Luke Skywalker!” With the empire crumbling and her resources gone, Mara eventually failed at this task and fell in love with the man she was supposed to kill.
Joining forces with the rebellion didn’t weaken her powers, as she would go on to be a fan-favorite who could deliver a mean beat down with her dark force powers.
19 The Grand Inquisitor
Inquisitors were a group of assassins created by the Galactic Empire to wipe out existing Jedi who survived Order 66.
Grand Inquisitor was merely a title held by the highest ranking assassins from this elite group who answered directly to Darth Vader. The one who occupied this spot and got some cool screen-time on Star Wars Rebels was a Pau'an male who used to be Jedi Temple guard.
What he lacked in dark side skills, the Grand Inquisitor made up for with his unique lightsaber blade. Vader might have sucked as a trainer, but he knew how to equip his lackeys and make them look intimidating. The double bladed lightsaber with a circular center grip sliced more than a few Jedi down before Kanan eventually took him out.
Sold into slavery following her parents' death, JuHani had an upbringing that made Anakin’s look like a day in the park. This dark force user was featured in the Knights Of The Old Republic game and is known as being the first LGBT character in Star Wars audiovisual media.
JuHani started out as a Jedi during the time period of the Jedi civil war, but fell over to the dark side following her last test to become a Jedi.
Thinking that she had killed her master Quatra by tapping into her dark emotions, she fled from the Order. JuHani had the potential to be an amazing dark side force wielder, but received no additional training in the dark arts while in hiding.
It’s because of her fight scene with Revan and how she could hold her own, that clocks this memorable character in this list.
17 Savage Opress
Once a skilled fighter and a Nightbrother, Savage Opress was turned into a warrior creature by the Mother Talzin. His appearance alone was enough to intimidate most who fought against him and it was his skills in fighting that led Dooku to recruiting him. Darth Tyranus would take Opress on as a secret apprentice, turning him into a personal assassin.
Savage, however, never intended to be Dooku’s errand boy, as his loyalty was still to Mother Talzin and the Nightsisters. His double bladed lightsaber made his a skilled opponent, but his lack of training in dark force techniques left him vulnerable.
In one of the greatest animated fight scenes ever, Savage and Darth Maul team up to overthrow Darth Sidious. Palpatine wisely separates the two during the fight and easily strikes down Opress, taking him out of the equation for good.
As a dedicated servant of the Imperial New Order doctrine, Lumiya was born during the height of Palatines reign as Shira Elan Colla Brie. Promoted to the rank of Major by Darth Vader, Luniya would also catch the eye of Darth Sidious. She would continue to excel and end up becoming the Dark Lady of the Sith.
Serving as a secret hand to Vader and as a legitemite one for the Emperor, Lumiya would be chosen for an almost impossible task.
Following the destruction of the first Death Star, Vader assigned her to infiltrate the Rebel Alliance as a spy. Her aim was to create chaos and kill Luke Skywalker. She would end up achieving one and failing at the other. With a whip as a chosen weapon, the Dark Lady of the Sith is a dark force user not to be messed with.
15 Kylo Ren
Known for being able to throw a tantrum better than anyone on this list, Kylo Ren has some dark side powers working in his favor. Son to Leia and Han, Ren isn’t a Jedi nor a Sith. Since we still don’t know the full extent of his powers, at least until the release of The Last Jedi, we can only rank him based on his current status.
While being weak as a lightsaber duelist, his use of the dark side in alternative ways is impressive. Reading minds is a huge advantage to have, although he apparently still needs some work after succumbing to the attack from Rey.
His ability to force hold is one of his greatest strengths. Like a Vader choke-hold on steroids, this power makes Kylo Ren one opponent you don’t want to get to close to.
14 Darth Revan
Known for serving both the light and dark side of the force, Darth Revan definitely had an identity crisis going on. Thanks to his memories being wiped, Revan was actually a more powerful Jedi than he was a Sith.
Revan switched over the dark side after an encounter with the Sith Emperor on Dromund Kaas. Taking up the reins in a war against the Republic, Darth Revan was quickly becoming an incredibly strong Lord... until he was betrayed by his apprentice Malak.
As a fan favorite, Revan was a skilled leader and fighter. It would be through his actions as a Sith Lord that would lead the galaxy into chaos and start the Jedi Civil War. He would later be caught by a Jedi trap, almost killed by Malak, and be brought back as a Jedi with no memories of his time as a Sith.
13 Asajj Ventress
Once a Jedi Padawan, Asaji Ventress ultimately desired to become a powerful Sith Lord. Trained by Darth Tyranus and serving as his assassin, Ventress would prove her resilience in battle over and over again.
This didn’t impress Dooku, however, as he kicked her of the apprenticeship program and tried to kill her. She would end up faking her death and take up the bounty hunter trade.
Asaji proved herself worthy of this spot on the list because of her Nightsister skills that she showcased as a bounty hunter. While her lightsaber blades are super cool looking when in battle, she wasn’t good enough to defeat her Jedi enemies-- only smart enough to know how to survive another day.
In the end, she would sacrifice her life to save Quinlan Vos and return to the point from where she began.
12 Tulak Hord
Mandalorians are excellent fighters, and Tulak Hord used that upbringing to become one powerful Sith Lord. His story-line takes place during the Galactic Republic days and has been recounted for generations.
Tulak was a skilled lightsaber fighter who let his aspirations for total domination go to his head. He began as most dark force users during that time-- as a Jedi-- but questioned their philosophies and eventually turned to the dark side.
His greatest achievement was finding the lost battleship Andromeda, which he used in the war he waged against the Jedi. Tulak Hord enjoyed killing so much that, when he was bored, it was the one thing he could count on to liven his spirits.
Even after losing the Andromeda, his reign of terror continued until he was killed in an acid pool.
11 Darth Maul
This fan-favorite gets a bad rap regarding his power, as most of his screen-time is devoted to him getting beat. However, it’s important to note that Darth Maul held his own against the Emperor quite well until Sidious took Savage Opress out of the equation. Perhaps Darth Maul will get the credit he deserves in his own stand-alone movie, if it ever comes to fruition.
His ranking on this list is primarily due to his wild fighting style and his ability to survive for decades after being sliced in half by a young Obi-Wan.
After being cut down, Maul understood that playing the mental long game, while also accumulating more physical power, was the way to go. His death was as it should be, struck down by the Jedi who changed the course of his life ─ old Ben Kenobi.
10 Darth Malak
A born leader, Malak initially was a Jedi before becoming frustrated by their poor choices. The Mandalorian Wars would end up being the final straw that would sow Malak's natural hate for the council. This pivotal point in Malak’s life would lead him to the Outer Rim, where he would discover an ancient Rakatan machine called the Star Forge.
Darth Malak joined the dark side at the same time as Revan, but was given the title of apprentice instead of Lord. This slight against him, in combination with the loss of his jaw that was removed by Revan’s lightsaber, would eventually lead to Malak rebelling against his master.
With Revan out of the way, Malak seized the reins as Dark Lord and ruled the Empire unchallenged, brutally conquering one territory after another. His death would ironically come by the blade of the Jedi Revan, who had no memory of his time as a Sith Lord.
9 Count Dooku
Darth Tyranus was originally a Jedi who trained under Yoda and was master to Qui-Gon Jinn. Known as one of the most skilled lightsaber duelist of his time, Tyranus was truly powerful, with a taste for the more elegant things in life. Able to use force lightning and out-wit his opponents, Dooku was on the fast track towards being an unstoppable force.
Tyranus was able to out-duel Anakin and Obi-Wan, as well as hold his own against Yoda. However, his taste for the finer things in life and not wanting to get his hands dirty made him soft over time.
Sadly, his belief in his own superiority, as well as his age, held the great Count of Serenno back from being one of the greats. Ultimately, it would be bad luck, poor timing, and his own ego that would lead to his demise.
8 Darth Plagueis
A brilliant strategist and a Munn, Darth Plagueis rarely gets enough credit for his work. For over a thousand years, the Sith had been in hiding from the Jedi, never able to tip the balance of the scales in their favor ─ at least until Plagueis came on the scene.
With a family fortune and political allies, Darth Plagueis used chaos and internal wars to chip away at the Jedi and the power of the Republic.
He’s also the one who discovered Palpatine and took him on as an apprentice. Plagueis was very skilled in the dark force powers, both as a fighter and as a Munn of knowledge.
It was through his initial planning and scheming that made it possible for Sidious to bring about the ultimate destruction of the Republic and the Jedi. Darth Plagueis would succumb to death in his sleep by the hand of Sidious, who obviously knew that an equal fight was not an option.
7 Darth Vader
The half man, half machine Sith Lord has always been beloved by dark side and light side Star Wars fans. His character and story-line is the reason we root for the bad guys as much as the good. What made Darth Vader so unique and powerful, was his ability to re-adapt his fighting styles and techniques after his defeat to Obi-Wan on Mustafar.
Anakin Skywalker was more powerful with a lightsaber, but he was arrogant and naïve. Upon becoming Darth Vader, he learned how to channel his aggression to become a powerful Sith and play the long game.
Despite not being able to summon force lightning because of his machinery or move like he did before his injuries, Lord Vader was the wheel that kept Darth Sidious’ Empire alive.
6 Darth Vitiate
Born as Tenebrae-- a mix breed of human and Sith pureblood-- Vitiate would reign as Emperor for centuries following the Great Hyperspace War. He was about as mad and power hungry as evil Lords come, wanting to bring about the destruction of all life in the galaxy rather than rule over it.
Born to simple farmers on the planet Nathema, Darth Vitiate was a ruthless individual who would start his path towards the dark side by murdering his own family.
His power was shown in full-force when he performed a ritual that wiped out every living creature on a planet, including the force. He had the ability to grant eternal life and link his mind to others, such as Kylo Ren.
However, eventually his plans to destroy everything living was leaked to his supporters, and they turned against him.
5 The Son
Featured in the animated series Clone Wars, the Son was a visible form of the dark side known as a Force-wielder species. Living on the planet Mortis, he was essentially a prisoner of the powerful force user, who went by the name of Father.
The Son saw an opportunity to tip the scales in his favor and shift the balance of the force by attempting to bring Anakin Skywalker to the dark side, while the Father was seeking Anakin to replace him as the one who kept balance.
The son could take on any form he wanted, and he used this power to his advantage. He could also summon force lightning and a variety of other dark force powers, which even the Father, Anakin, Kenobi, and Ashoka couldn’t overpower.
Scheming wasn’t his strong suit, however, as he was out manipulated by the Father. The Son had the potential to be number one if he had balanced brains and strength together instead of relying purely on raw power to achieve his goals.
4 Darth Bane
Most popularly known in the Star Wars community as the Sith who created the “Rule of Two,” Darth Bane has managed to crawl out of obscurity and become part of the Star Wars cannon.
Many fans would love to see this evil mastermind obtain his own film one day, as he certainly deserves it. Bane was not only a mastermind tactician, but also a powerful fighter who killed hundreds of Jedi and Sith during his reign.
It was through his foresight of taking the Sith into the shadows that would open the door for Darth Plagueis to start the process of putting the Sith back at the ultimate seat of power over the galaxy.
Darth Bane was featured as a ghost on the animated series Clone Wars and was voiced by none other than Mark Hamill, who is commonly known as Luke Skywalker.
3 Exar Kun
Formerly a Jedi Knight, Exar Kun was a powerful dark force user who ultimately failed to restore the Sith as rulers of the galaxy. He is most famously known for creating the duel bladed lightsaber and as a master duelist, since his new founded blade was able to cut down anyone in his way. Through the teachings and mentorship of Marka Ragnos, he began what is known as the Great Sith War.
Exar Kun left his mark in the history books by murdering the Supreme Chancellor in front of thousands of witnesses, as well as killing of the Jedi Grand Master. It took thousands of Jedi warriors coming together to entrap his spirit in the Jedi Temple located on Yavin 4.
His inability to manipulate like his predecessors and fore-see the plan executed by the Jedi would become his greatest weakness and ultimately lead to his demise in the physical and force ghost form.
2 Darth Sideous
Sideous is not number one, and for good reason. Born as Sheev Palpatine, this iconic Star Wars character was highly intelligent... and slightly mad. He caught the attention of Darth Plagueis after he secretly had his entire family murdered in order to take control of its wealth and power.
He was extremely skilled with a lightsaber, as we witnessed in Revenge Of The Sith when he went toe-to-claw with the great Jedi Master Yoda. He also had amazing control over force lightning, able to increase and decrease its destructive power with ease.
His ability to manipulate and control multiple events at one time were ultimately his greatest powers. What kept him from the top spot on this list was his one and only critical error: underestimating Luke Skywalker’s influence on Darth Vader. Because of this, his legacy was cut short and his rule as Emperor didn’t even last three decades.
1 Marka Ragnos
Born as a Sith-human hybrid, Marka Ragnos was a master at dueling with overly large swords, and was able to rule as a Sith Lord for over a century.
He wasn’t the best at specialty dark force powers, but he knew how to overcome this weakness through his physical strength. No other Sith in history was as strong as Ragnos, and his death by natural causes only reinforces this fact.
The legacy and golden age of the Sith that Marka Ragnos created lived on well past his death. As a force ghost, he had the ability to crown Exar Kun as a Sith Dark Lord in order to bring back the glory days that were once beheld to him.
It’s because of these abilities-- and his love for big horns-- that Marka Ragnos takes the number one spot as the most powerful dark force user in the Star Wars universe.
Do you disagree? Who do you think the most powerful dark force user is in Star Wars? Let us know in the comments!