In real life, Galaxy’s Edge resides in the Walt Disney World and Disneyland theme parks. In Star Wars canon, however, you’ll find it and Black Spire Outpost on a planet called Batuu.
When you visit Galaxy’s Edge, you may be surprised at the level of intricate detail and immersive ephemera that make you feel as if you’re stepping onto another world. You’ll hear strange greetings such as “Bright suns!” and marvel at ancient-looking rock formations and carvings. These aren’t just random points of interest or hints of manufactured flavor. They all exist together in a cohesive narrative, a canon history bursting with culture.
Thanks to lots of books and comics in recent years, we now know a lot about the significance of Batuu throughout the Star Wars saga. In this article, we’ll cover the history of Batuu from its ancient roots that go back further and to more weird places than we’ve ever seen in Star Wars, to visits to Black Spire Outpost from some of the galaxy’s most beloved characters, to the “present day” and the occupation of the First Order.
If you ask official Galaxy’s Edge employees about the history of Batuu, they will tell you this fantastic tale.
Millennia before the High Republic era, Batuu was inhabited solely by wild animals and a race of tall, sentient trees. These trees communicated with one another through their root systems and exerted a powerful influence on their environment.
The trees decided to create a new race of intelligent life forms called the fae. Using the fae, they were able to spread out across the planet. As time went on, the trees created more and varying types of fae better suited to Batuu’s diverse landscape.
But trouble was swift to follow this expansion. One colony of fae became greedy and demanded more resources from the trees. When the trees couldn’t meet their demands, the fae began to make war with the creatures that had brought them to life. A third group, a new colony of trees, tried to intervene and broker peace, but their entry into the conflict only made the situation worse.
But the fae grew too smart and too powerful. They developed technology that allowed them to suck the energy out of the trees and use them to power weapons. This practice led to a horrifying cataclysm, the result of which was the death of all the trees. The trees were petrified, turning into rock-like spires that would eventually inspire the name of Batuu’s foremost center for trade, Black Spire Outpost.
Eventually, other beings did arrive on Batuu. Ariana Surabat arrived with a crew about her ship the Ravenstar and settled the planet, establishing the Black Spire Outpost. For a time, Batuu was a major center for trade and a stop along old space routes leading to Wild Space. But after the invention of hyperspace technology, most travelers passed Batuu by. As a result, it became more of a haven for smugglers, explorers, and people who just wanted to disappear.
The High Republic Era
During the High Republic era, the Jedi Order kept a temple on Batuu. The fate of the temple is not known. Presumably, it was abandoned as the reach of the Jedi shrank and centered more on Coruscant.
The Clone Wars Era
Batuu stayed under the radar of major government factions until the Clone Wars. At this point in its history, the planet was visited by three prominent figures that would have huge impacts on the fate of the galaxy, each in their own way.
The first one was Senator Padme Amidala, who travels to Batuu in search of one of her handmaidens who last reported from that area. The second is her husband, Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker; he goes to Batuu to search for Padme. The third is a Chiss officer who would eventually come to be known as Grand Admiral Thrawn of the Galactic Empire. The then-commander in the Chiss Ascendancy was on a mission to find allies against a powerful enemy of his people.
Padme’s handmaiden, Duja, had discovered that the Separatists were using a cantina in Black Spire on Batuu as a transfer point for weapons and equipment. The operator of the cantina, a being named Janott, would hand the weapons and equipment over to the Separatists, who would take them to a droid factory on a planet called Mokivj.
Unfortunately for Duja, the Separatists discovered her, mistook her for a thief, and killed her. But before she died, Duja managed to send a message to Padme, who then undertook to go to Batuu herself and find out more information.
Padme arrived on Batuu and tried to find Duja. She quickly discovered that her handmaiden and friend was dead, which meant she had to dig deep for clues as to what precious information Duja was killed for. Padme pretended that she was delivering a starship to a man on Batuu to throw off suspicion. She found Duja’s ship and over the course of exploring it, discovered the existence of the droid factory on Mokivj. She decided to travel there in Duja’s ship, although she made a narrow escape: the Batuu police had decided she was trouble and tried to shoot her down, but her Nubian vessel was too swift. She escaped the planet.
Meanwhile, Anakin Skywalker discovered that Padme was headed for Batuu, alone and unaided. He went after her, but when he reached Batuu’s orbit he encountered a lone starship piloted by a strange being named Thrawn. The two conversed and Thrawn decided to help Anakin find Padme.
The pair landed on the planet’s surface and found Padme’s ship, which was being combed over by smugglers in the employ of Janott the bartender. Anakin was angry at first, but Thrawn exercised his characteristic diplomacy and the two were able to explore the ship themselves. They then decided to go to Black Spire Outpost together to find more information.
While they were in Black Spire, they questioned Janott the bartender about Padme and Duja. Janott pretended to know nothing, however. Next, some mugs on the bar exploded and Anakin and Thrawn were attacked by Separatist agents, who had followed them into the town. They subdued the agents, but then they discovered that there was another Separatist gunman outside waiting for them to come out. Anakin used the body of one of the dead Separatists as a decoy and escaped in his ship, giving Thrawn cover to follow the other gunman.
While flying over Black Spire, Anakin took some damage to his ship, which forced him to make an emergency landing. Meanwhile, Thrawn had followed the gunman to the same landing field and found a freighter called the Larkrer. He and Anakin boarded it and defeated the droids guarding it. They discovered that one of the Larkrer’s destination was Mokivj. They also find out that some of the equipment that was meant for the Separatists was stolen, indicating that Janott and his gang of smugglers had tried to double-cross their employer.
Anakin and Thrawn went back to Black Spire Outpost and interrupted a confrontation between the Separatists and the smugglers. The Separatists tried to attack them next, but Anakin and Thrawn easily dealt with them. They question Janott again about Padme, and the bartender finally revealed that he had seen her, and that she had already left the planet.
Anakin and Thrawn boarded the Larkrer again and piloted it to Mokivj. There, they found Padme and a Separatist droid factory, which they all worked together to destroy.
Following this adventure, Thrawn returned to the Chiss Ascendancy, and Anakin and Padme went home to the Core Worlds. Batuu slipped once again into obscurity for a couple of decades.
The Imperial Era
Many years following this incident, after Emperor Palpatine reorganized the Republic into the Galactic Empire, the sinister Sith lord sensed a disturbance in the Force. The disturbance originated on Batuu, where a species called the Darshi had recently begun establishing houses and a communications triad. The Darshi were secretly working for a brutal race of beings called the Grysk, which were at war with the Chiss Ascendancy. On orders from the Grysk, the Darshi had captured Force-sensitive Chiss children and hidden them in hibernation chambers in their houses on Batuu. The Grysk used the children to plot pathways in the Unknown Regions.
Palpatine sent Darth Vader and Grand Admiral Thrawn to Batuu to deal with the disturbance. While on Batuu, they discovered the communications triad and the hibernation chambers. A Grysk freighter arrived in the system, destroyed the communications triad, and tried to escape with the children in its cargo hold. But one of Vader’s ships managed to lock onto it, preventing its escape. Thrawn returned the children to Admiral Ar’alani of the Chiss Ascendancy, and he and Vader departed the Batuu system.
Aside from this incident, Batuu’s name resurfaces only two more times during the Imperial era. The first time is when a cyborg bounty hunter named Valance traveled to Batuu to do a job capturing some members of a clan of Devaronians. The second time is when a freighter belonging to the proprietor of the Droid Depot was attacked by the Guavian Death Gang. A droid repair technician aboard the ship was forced to crash land on Batuu, where he defeated the members of the Guavian Death Gang that pursued him.
The Resistance And The First Order
Fast forward a few decades more, and we come to the era of the Resistance and the First Order. Under orders from General Leia Organa, Resistance spy Vi Moradi and her unlikely companion, a former First Order officer named Archex, traveled to Batuu to establish a base. They discovered that Black Spire Outpost was under the control of a crime boss named Oga Garra. Garra ordered her lackeys to ransack Moradi and Archex’s ship and steal their supplies. Moradi was forced to take a job in town to make enough money to buy more supplies.
As Moradi got more familiar with the denizens of Black Spire, she managed to gain a few recruits. But trouble stirred up once again when the First Order arrived. She was captured by stormtroopers when she tried to stop them from harassing a couple of old women in the town. Her recruits rescued her, and Archex sacrificed his life to blow up the First Order’s ship, thus ridding the town of the evil regime’s presence.
A short time later, however, the First Order returned, this time with an entire legion of stormtroopers. They occupied the planet, and Vi Moradi and her recruits were forced to go underground.
During the First Order’s occupation, an incident occurred in which the Kendoh Gang arrived on Batuu to try to steal the hilt of the Sword of Khashyun from Dok-Ondar, the proprietor of Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities. Over the course of several skirmishes and the hilt passing through several different hands, it ended back up in the possession of Dok-Ondar, who, it turned out, was the mysterious benefactor who had hired the Kendoh Gang to steal the hilt in the first place.
The Future Of Batuu
As to the future of Batuu, no one can say what will happen (except, of course, the Star Wars story group). More than likely, the First Order occupation will move off-world or simply dissolve with the destruction of the Sith Fleet during the events of the Rise of Skywalker. But then again, that might take some of the fun and intrigue of visiting Galaxy’s Edge at Disney World and Disneyland.