Maz Kanata is more than a thousand years old, a diminutive being with vast experience at surviving in the underworld. From her castle on Takodana, Maz has seen galactic powers rise and fall and felt the Force ebb and flow, seeking an elusive balance between darkness and light. She has given many a young smuggler a start by offering credits, equipment or connections, and helped many an old friend rediscover a lost path.
A lush green world in the galaxy’s Western Reaches, Takodana has long served as the base of operations for the diminutive pirate queen Maz Kanata, whose ancient castle is a haven for smugglers, brigands, scouts and spies from numerous worlds. Takodana has been largely spared war over the centuries, remaining neutral as galaxy-ruling regimes come and go around it.
Han Solo rose from an impoverished childhood on the mean streets of Corellia to become one of the heroes of the Rebel Alliance. As captain of the Millennium Falcon, Han and his co-pilot Chewbacca came to believe in the cause of galactic freedom, joining Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia Organa in the fight against the Empire. After the Battle of Endor, Han faced difficult times in a chaotic galaxy, leading to a shattering confrontation with his estranged son Ben.
A scavenger toughened by life in Jakku’s harsh deserts, Rey has been drawn into a galaxy-spanning conflict and learned that her life is being shaped by the mysterious power of the Force. She seeks out Luke Skywalker, the lost Jedi Master, in hopes that he will aid the Resistance against the First Order and help her control her growing powers. But when that quest ends in disappointment, Rey must find a new way forward.
The son of Han Solo and Leia Organa, Ben Solo was seduced by the dark side of the Force and renamed himself Kylo Ren, becoming the First Order’s champion and Supreme Leader Snoke’s student. Kylo killed his father and seeks to destroy his mother’s Resistance and the remnants of the Jedi Order. Though a servant of the dark side, he still struggles against the pull of the light side of the Force.
The First Order’s infantry units wear stark white armor derived from that worn by the Republic’s clone troopers and the Empire’s stormtroopers. Members of this new generation of stormtroopers are trained from birth, growing up with unit designations instead of names and fed a steady diet of First Order propaganda to ensure absolute loyalty. Where the Empire opted for numbing routine, the First Order’s training simulations and live-fire drills encourage improvisation on the battlefield, making these stormtroopers more dangerous than their Imperial predecessors.