Figured I'd make this a large information thread with links to sources and such. Most (all of it) is from Kotaku. First up: Luke has Killed a Lot of People... Next up, from io9, a short summary of the events leading up TFA. This covers the 30 year gap between Return of the Jedi and now, so be sure to take notes. If you haven't read a lot of the books, you may not know some of the characters. The key parts are after The Battle of Jakku, so you can skip there if needed. Also explains how the "defeat" of the Empire really just fractured the Imperial forces and wasn't an overwhelming victory (as implied by the end of the original trilogy.) Spoiler: Emperor Lore After RoTJ, the Emperor actually lived through the destruction of the Death Star II. He had become afraid of death, and had been cloning himself in various parts of the galaxy leading up to his original death. Through use of the Force, he cast his Force essence (a technique discovered by Darth Bane in the Bane Trilogy 1000 years or so prior) into one of his distant clones. (Note: Darth Bane actually used this on his then-apprentice Zannah, who resisted and became the new Darth. She learned the ability and passed it down, but exactly how was never actually stated. I assume it either learned through Bane's holocron that he created shortly before his death. The Essence Transfer consumed the original host body, so if the transfer failed, the caster was lost to the Void.) The problem with the clones was that they weren't able to contain his Dark Side powers for long. The bodies eventually decayed after a few months of use, to the point that he'd again have to cast his essence to another Clone. After years of fighting a returning Emperor, the Rebels finally defeated him by destroying all his cloning facilities. I can't remember the timeline exactly, but they fought the Emperor for at least a decade after his original defeat. Other fun facts Spoiler The title Darth was originally bestowed upon the accepted leader of the Sith, a species that fled the galaxy when modern Jedi declared war on the Dark Side. The species settled on a random planet well outside of the Outer Rim, where they lived for millenia. The culture grew and they took up slaves and such. Eventually, Revan (Knights of the Old Republic) found them and defeated them. The lore states that Revan found them, was brainwashed by the Sith Emperor, and set out on the Old Republic. Revan eventually was defeated by the Jedi, brainwashed (again), and defeated the Sith Empire he created in the Old Republic's galaxy. After which, he began to remember the events that took place when he originally found the Sith. Revan returned to seek answers about what was going on and why he felt there was a large threat to his Galaxy. Revan attacked the Sith Emperor and lost, becoming a Force life source to the Emperor. Eventually, Revan was able to defeat the Emperor, though it was millenia after his capture. Assuming the timelines are matching, Revan defeated the true Sith Empire around the time of the prequel movies. It's assumed Revan died after vanquishing that foe, and no further stories have been written for it. I'll be updating this as I find more, and adding random things as well.