A newly released Star Wars encyclopedia has revealed that Rey’s Force vision as seen in The Force Awakens was actually a demonstration of a rare Force ability, though this revelation may present problems to the Disney canon.
In Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Rey experiences a powerful Force vision after touching the Lightsaber once wielded by both Anakin and Luke Skywalker and is shown sense from the both the blade and Rey’s past and future.
These scenes include a confrontation between Luke Skywalker and the Knights of Ren, Rey watching her parent’s departure after being left on Jakku, and her first battle with Kylo Ren.
Initially, many fans believed this scene to be a typical display of the Force Vision ability seen throughout the franchise, such as when Anakin Skywalker saw visions of Padme’s death in Revenge of the Sith or when Luke experienced a premonition of Han and Leia being hurt in The Empire Strikes Back.
However, the upcoming and aptly named “The Star Wars Book” encyclopedia has revealed that this was actually an example of a “Forceback” (a play on the term ‘flashback’), a version of psychometry that allows Force users to gain information about an item’s history by simply touching it.
In the encyclopedia’s entry for Force Abilities, authors Pablo Hidalgo, Cole Horton, and Dan Zehr explain that “Some Force abilities require years of training, a form of instinctual aptitude, or a very strong connection to the Force to access.”
However, they note that “A small number of Force users, including Rey and Cal Kestis, have the rare ability of psychometry, which allows them to learn about people or events by touching an object associated with them.”
Though this ability made brief appearances in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars episode “Hunt for Ziro” by Jedi Master Quinlan Vos and in the Dark Disciple and Force Collector novels, the ability would not gain widespread recognition until its use in Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order.
Identified initially as ‘sense’ or ‘force echoes’ and used as a mechanic to facilitate the title’s ‘collectable items’ mechanic and map exploration, the previously mentioned Cal Kestis was able to use this ability to see the histories surrounding various items and locations throughout the game.
Unfortunately, the retconning of Rey’s vision to a Forceback rather than an outright Force Vision does present a narrative discrepancy.
While Force Visions allowed users to see various moments in history, both past and future, Forcebacks are specifically noted to only show the history of a respective item, both emotional and physical.
Given this difference, a Forceback should not have allowed Rey to see her own abandonment, an event completely unrelated to the Skywalker Lightsaber, or Kylo Ren on the surface of Starkiller base, which had yet to happen.
The Star Wars Book is set to release on October 20th.
What do you make of Rey’s new ability? Does it make sense to you? Let us know your thoughts on social media or in the comments down below