Franchise: Star Wars Expanded Universe

As expected for a film series this popular, the Star Wars Expanded Universe is immense; in fact, there's a very real argument to be made that Star Wars established the "Expanded Universe" concept as we know it. (While the concept certainly existed long before Star Wars, it was this particular EU that was the first to become a financial and mindshare juggernaut that in some ways became bigger than the films themselves.) Made-For-TV films, Animated Adaptations, a series of Radio Dramas, Video Games and a large series of novels all fall under this banner. Even with how massive the project is, Star Wars has one of the most elaborate, internally consistent canons in the history of media publication. It is also unusual in that pretty much every licensed Star Wars anything is entirely canon unless it is directly contradicted by the films, including the video games and comics. TV Tropes has a very incomplete list of the Star Wars Expanded Universe; see Wookieepedia for a really complete list.

The canonicity of the Expanded Universe is a matter of some heated debate among the fans. Some take the view that since it's published, it's official. Others point out that George Lucas himself considered it a separate project apart from "his" canon. This has led to lots and lots of Fan Dumb from all sides. The fact that some of the installments of the Expanded Universe, most notably Dark Empire, not only had Lucas' direct involvement, he even suggested what goes into the story (or more accurately, what shouldn't go into the story) doesn't help the decisiveness of the subject, either, nor some of Lucas' flip flop decisions on canon in the movies themselves, for that matter.

Unfortunately for fans of the Expanded Universe, after acquiring Lucasfilm in 2012, Disney decided to drop the hammer on the EU, as seen here, with the business end formally coming down on April 25th, 2014. While they are acting too polite to outright say "non-canon", the films will be moving forward with a different storyline. The last piece of this version of the Expanded Universe, the Dark Horse Comics comic line including Legacy Volume 2, concluded in August 2014. The new Disney-Lucasfilm group has created a dedicated Story Team that will ensure everything produced under the new regime, starting with Star Wars Rebels, is iron-clad and wholly consistent canon... but this necessitates the formal axing and cessation of the old EU and content for it. "Elements" from the EU will still appear in media after the split at the Story Team's discretion, but the EU as it was has been ended. Though the old EU continuity has been locked, it will remain in circulation under the banner Legends.

For those of you interested in seeing what the the old, no-longer-valid "Canon Tier" system looked like, it can be found here, further down the page. Conversely, if you're looking for a list of works that are canon after the Legends Retcon, look here. If you're simply looking for the lore within the Star Wars Expanded Universe that is canon barring Legends, look here.

Word of warning: the old Star Wars Expanded Universe is vast. Therefore, please only add works that have their own pages on this wiki. The books listed are each part of their own series. They are heavily outnumbered by standalones and two-part series. A list of all Star Wars media is here. Warning: Huge. To give you an idea, pretty much every background character seen in the films, even that alien guy just passing by the screen, has not only a name and a species listed, but a fully fleshed out biography. Typically no more than that, but still. Oh, and even the movie's background props have received their own stories. As of mid-2012, the list shows 2,337 items. Thankfully, a book has been published that ties everything published up to its release date into a neat timeline and has summaries of most of it. Conversely, the new Star Wars Expanded Universe established by Disney is easier to catch up on...for the time being.

Please put works within each medium, wherever possible, in in-universe chronological order.

The old Expanded Universe (Star Wars Legends)

Details on the the works that comprised the old Expanded Universe, and the tropes contained therein, will be covered here.

The new Expanded Universe (Canon)

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In addition, the following films have yet to be placed on the timeline:

  • Gareth Edwards's Star Wars Spin-Off (2016).
  • Josh Trank's Star Wars Spin-Off (2018).
  • Unknown Star Wars Spin-Off (2020).

  • Dark Disciple (2015) - a novel staring Asajj Ventress and Quinlan Vos, adapted from an unproduced story arc of The Clone Wars.note 
  • Tarkin (2014) - featuring the character from A New Hope, spanning his entire life.
  • Lords of the Sith (2015) - takes place between Revenge Of The Sith and Rebels.
  • A New Dawn (2014) - a prequel to the Rebels TV series showing how series protagonists Kanan Jarrus and Hera Syndulla meet.
  • Servants of the Empire (2014-2015) - focuses on the adventures of Rebels character Zare Leonis.
  • Ezra's Gamble (2014)
  • Several junior novels that tie in with Rebels (2014-ongoing).
  • Heir to the Jedi (2015) - takes place between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, told by Luke Skywalker in first-person.

    Reference Books and Articles 

    Short Stories 
  • The End of History - a short story in Star Wars Insider Magazine 154 which follows a member of the Corellian Resistance on the run from the Empire who encounters a man with several Jedi artifacts.
  • One Thousand Levels Down - a short story in Star Wars Insider Magazine 151 that takes place on Coruscant shortly after the destruction of Alderaan, following two refugees from the doomed planet in their attempts to escape persecution from the Empire.
  • Blade Squadron - a two-part short story in Star Wars Insider Magazine 149-150 which focus on a squadron of B-Wing pilots during the Battle of Endor and their attempt to destroy a Star Destroyer.

    Comic Books 
  • Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir (2014) - a four-issue limited series based on unused scripts for the Clone Wars TV series. This holds the distinction of being the only canonical comic book to not be published by Marvel Comics.
  • Kanan (2015-ongoing) - an ongoing series featuring the backstory of one the lead protagonists of Rebels, explaining how the young Jedi was able to go into hiding following Order 66 and was eventually able to strike out as a rebel leader.
  • Several short comics published in Star Wars Rebels Magazine (2015-ongoing):
    • Ring Race (January 2015) - The Ghost crew compete in a race against a vicious crime lord.
  • Princess Leia (2015) - a five-issue limited series showing the early life Leia Organa as a Princess, Senator, and Rebel Leader.
  • Star Wars (2015-ongoing) - an ongoing series taking place between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, shown from the perspective of several different members of the Rebel Alliance.
  • Star Wars: Darth Vader (2015-ongoing) - an ongoing series that takes place in the same timeframe as the 2015 Star Wars comic series, showing how Darth Vader rebounded from his defeat at the Battle of Yavin.

    Animated Shows 

    Video Games 
  • Star Wars Journeys (2014-2015) - a series of retellings of the first six films.
  • Star Wars Commander (2014) - a strategy game for smartphones.

In addition, the following games have yet to be placed on the timeline:

  • DICE's reboot of Star Wars Battlefront (2015-2016note ).
  • Untitled Visceral Games Project (forthcoming).

Canon Policy

In April 2014, virtually all of the Expanded Universe was declared non-canon to the upcoming third trilogy. Only the films, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, and new material released after this point will be considered canon (as listed above). However, the old Expanded Universe remains a resource used as a frame of reference for future material, at the discretion of their writers and the new Lucasfilm Story Group. In fact, the "new" Expanded Universe is in and of itself a misnomer - everything from this point on is simply being referred to as being either "Canon" or "Legends" in order to reflect the fact that everything is being approved by Lucasfilm.

Last, but not least, whatever George Lucas says is canon is canon (even if he is less involved with the franchise than he used to be), just as it was with Legends. One such decision he's made so far is to proclaim that Boba Fett didn't die in the Sarlaac, so perhaps he isn't the Scapegoat Creator people thought he was after all.

Tropes used throughout the new Star Wars Expanded Universe:

  • A Day in the Limelight: The Leia limited series expands upon her backstory.
  • Broad Strokes: Any new works that are influenced by works that were made in the Legends continuity utilize this trope, reworking old characters (and iconic ships) into the new setting.
  • Continuity Reboot: A massive one, as detailed by the description above.
  • Named by the Adaptation: Tarkin reveals Emperor Palpatine's first name is Sheev.
  • Society Marches On:
    • It was frequently mentioned in Legends that women in the Imperial Military was an extreme rarity. However, likely as a result of women taking greater roles in real-world militaries, there has been a substantial increase in the amount of women passingly mentioned as serving in the Imperial Navy, including a female captain of a Star Destroyer.
      • Although even at the time of the Legends continuity this was partially a matter of making the Empire a Politically Incorrect Villain, since the New Republic military had a fairly large proportion of female personnel.
  • Villain Episode:
    • Lords Of The Sith, starring Darth Vader and Emperor Palpatine.
    • Tarkin, starring the titular Grand Moff.
    • The Darth Vader comic, starring... Well, guess.
    • Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir, which picks up where The Clone Wars left Maul. Also features Darth Sidious and Talzin.