New Star Wars Novel Explains Why Palpatine Made Exegol His Base Of Operations


Star Wars: The Rise of the Skywalker dropped the highly controversial bombshell that Palpatine had survived Return of the Jedi and had actually been rebuilding his forces ever since, hidden away on Exegol, a legendary planet found in the Unknown Regions. It was explained to be hard to locate, but eventually the heroes found their way there and were able to take out the former Emperor’s fleet of Final Order ships.

The villain’s choice to make Exegol his base of operations actually turned out to be a fatal flaw in his plan, though. The heavy, stormy atmosphere of the planet made it difficult to launch his fleet, which left it vulnerable to attack from the Resistance. If Palpatine had chosen somewhere less hazardous as his HQ, he may well have succeeded in taking over the galaxy once again. But Exegol was the only place he could’ve squirrelled away, as revealed in a new Star Wars novel.

Timothy Zahn’s Thrawn Ascendancy: Chaos Rising is set entirely in the Unknown Regions, thereby offering our best exploration yet of the dark corner of the galaxy in SW canon. The book reveals that the species that live within it label the space the Chaos and it was formed a millennia ago by a series of chained supernova explosions. The inhabitants of the regions have identified a number of “box systems” within it as well, star systems with only one access and exit. These box systems are perfect for military uses due to their highly secure nature.

So, we can infer that Exegol is one such system and that’s why it was the only place Palpatine could construct his Final Order fleet in secret. Anywhere else, the Resistance surely would have picked up on the enormous undertaking, but within the planet’s box system, they were none the wiser. Until he decided to make his intentions known to the galaxy with his sinister broadcast revealing his resurrection, that is. Not your best move, Palps.