- "That is so like you, Master Kenobi. I am called a great swordsman because I invented a lethal style; but who is greater, the creator of a killing form - or the master of the classic form?"
- — Mace Windu to Obi-Wan Kenobi
Form III: Soresu, the Way of the Mynock, or the Resilience Form, is the third of the seven classic forms of lightsaber combat. Soresu, unlike any of the other combat styles, is not an answer to a particular type of weakness. Soresu is considered the consummate Jedi combat form in that it embraces a passive way of life and can be a literal expression of a Jedi's tenement to defend rather than attack.
Form III was originally developed to counteract the advancing blaster technology throughout the Galaxy. Since those whom the Jedi opposed usually wielded blasters, the Jedi needed to find a method of defense that could repel normally overwhelming volleys of blaster fire. Soresu was then founded upon the basic deflection principles all Padawans were taught at the time, the skill that enables them to protect themselves from blaster bolts.
The third form of lightsaber combat utilizes motions that occur very close to the body, in an attempt to achieve near-total protection and expend as little energy as possible while executing moves. This technique minimizes the body's exposure, making a well-trained practitioner nearly invincible. Followers of Soresu comfortably remain on the defensive until their opponent leaves an opening that a Soresu practitioner can exploit in multiple ways. Soresu is best described as a passive form of combat, and one that is used by those who are extremely patient and reserved.
Due to the emphasis on defense training, Form III involves preparation for prolonged battles so that the user will be able to learn as much as possible about their opponent or opponents while engaged in combat. Also, by being more capable in lengthy battles, a Soresu user tends to be in a position to gain control of the situation and provide multiple options for the duelist; such as the choice to either kill, disarm, or even reason with their opponent. Soresu's greatest power rests in the endurance and control a practitioner eventually develops. Masters of the form leave no opening for their opponents to take advantage of while they wait for the eventual lapse in their opponent's own defense.
Even though a truly focused master of Soresu is nearly unbeatable due to a strong defensive posture, it is more of a guarantee of survival rather than victory. Initiates in Form III are known to be more than capable when defending themselves from attack, but might lack the experience to trap an opponent in their own offense. Since the defensive tactics of the form include guards and parries that are very close to the body, even a master has to keep a strong focus on their actions as small lapses in an otherwise strong defense leave little room to avoid injury. The key to truly mastering Soresu may concern the concept and philosophy of Soresu, instead of just its combat moves.
Soresu was a very favorable form of combat for Jedi right up until the Great Jedi Purge. The defense and control it allows a practitioner make for suitable outcomes in favor of the user when faced with hurried opponents who leave themselves vulnerable to counterattack. It is best used for warding off blaster fire and multiple opponents as a trained user would be able to defend even outside their visual range. However, its defense requires a very large amount of focus from the wielder and even a momentary fault in concentration could mean the user's defeat. Jedi with less focused minds usually abandon this style of combat to capitalize on the benefits of other styles that require less dedication to prolonged fighting. Jedi who master Soresu are known to be the most successful when dealing in situations where a quick victory is not favorable to total understanding and calculated action.
Known Exodus Masters of SoresuEdit
- "The road is long, but it is worth the journey, for a true master of Form Three is invincible."
- — Luminara Unduli