WHO AM I?
Embark on a journey through time…
Dive into the deep well of nostalgia that envelops me whenever I think back to the day I carefully inserted that beloved VHS tape, labeled “Star Wars,” into my cherished VHS player. I switched on my trusty 13″ Daewoo TV, and the iconic opening crawl graced the screen, filling the room with the timeless Star Wars Theme from its modest speaker.
A surge of excitement coursed through me as I eagerly anticipated the magic that awaited on screen. Yes, the video quality was admittedly grainy and imperfect, but it somehow added to the charm and authenticity of the cinematic masterpiece about to unfold.
The celestial wonders of the Original Trilogy, faithfully transmitted through the unfurling tape, filled my six-year-old self with pure wonder. This chance encounter ignited a lifelong passion deep within me. I found myself utterly captivated by the magnificent lightsabers, each one a symbol of power and elegance. My dear friend and I marveled at their intricate designs with wide-eyed wonder.
Despite the seemingly insurmountable cost, we envisioned ourselves as future wielders of these majestic weapons, never once doubting that destiny would one day grant us the privilege of owning our very own lightsabers, becoming an indelible part of the timeless Star Wars legacy.
The Phantom Menace Experience: A Nostalgic Journey
In the deep recesses of time, on that fateful day of August 20th, 1999, a cinematic event took the world by storm. It was the long-awaited arrival of the new Star Wars masterpiece, “The Phantom Menace.” The anticipation leading up to this moment was palpable, a fire fueled by ingenious marketing strategies that left us exhilarated.
In those glorious days, we were captivated by the enthralling “Episode 1 Pod Racer” and the epic “Defeat the Dark Side” campaign initiated by none other than Pizza Hut. My heart raced as I eagerly indulged in the PC game and acquired the prized “Nubian Royal Starship.” Oh, the anticipation, the hype literally coursed through my veins!
And then, at last, the day of reckoning arrived. As we settled into the dimly lit Gloria theatre, time stood still. The opening scrawl illuminated the screen, and we were transported to a galaxy far, far away. Through the lens of our imagination, we embarked on a cinematic journey of unparalleled magnitude.
I shall forever cherish that moment, etched into the depths of my soul. Enthralled by the stunning visuals, we became one with the characters. Emotions surged as we empathized with the ever-resilient Qui-Gon and the valiant Obi-Wan. It was more than a simple movie experience; it was a moment that impacted my future personality.
To this day, I hold dear those memories, for they are meant to be shared with kindred spirits. Recalling the unforgettable “Phantom Menace” experience, my heart swells with passion and enthusiasm. It serves as a reminder that through the power of storytelling and the magic of cinema, we can embark on truly extraordinary journeys that leave an indelible mark on our lives and bring us together, no matter the age, ethnicity or gender.
The Jedi Knight Era: A Time of Unbridled Passion
Then “Jedi Power Battles” was unleashed upon us, reigniting our love for the franchise. Countless games followed suit, but it was “Jedi Knight 2 – Jedi Outcast” that truly captured my heart. I remember vividly watching my dear friend Leo, consumed by the game for hours on end. His fingers danced across the keyboard, unleashing powerful commands into the console, tinkering with mods, and engaging in exhilarating conversations with fellow players. It was a mesmerizing spectacle that left me utterly captivated.
Overwhelmed with excitement, I rushed to embrace this new obsession, only to be cruelly reminded of the limitations of my humble PC. An agonizing “Open_GL 3D error” mocking me relentlessly, due to my outdated graphics card. In that moment, it felt as if the entire world had crumbled around me, and like Vader himself, I let out a silent scream of despair.
Determined to be a part of this extraordinary universe, I resolved to make the game mine, even if it meant merely possessing it. A Nintendo Game Cube was hastily acquired, just to witness the game at home. However the experience fell short without the precision of a keyboard and mouse, and the absence of the vibrant online community diminished the magic. Mods, the lifeblood of this world, were sorely missed. Inevitably, I bid farewell to the Game Cube, relinquishing it to seek solace in the warm embrace of my father’s PC, where every other weekend, I would lose myself for hours on end.
Oh, the countless hours poured into the captivating realms of JK2 and JK3! I found myself shaping a destiny of my own, forging bonds with like-minded individuals who crossed my path within the game. Together, we birthed the “Sith Master Clan”. Our adventures persisted, until the trials of life led us on diverging paths. Still, I held on and immersed myself in the art of modding and experimenting over the years. To this day I sometimes fire up JK3 and play an hour or two. Even if it’s just chatting and duelling with like-minded individuals.
Then came the exhilaration of discovering the world of lightsabers! It felt like the Force itself guided me online, where I finally found a treasure trove of possibilities. Lightsabers suddenly evolved into something more high-tech. I discovered Ultrasabers and knew that I will spend money today. These hilts featured programmable sound fonts and brighter blades then ever. My heart soared as I chose the “Prophecy V3” hilt, my very own luminous instrument. But that was just the beginning…
My curiosity eventually led me to Saberforge, drawn by its exquisite hilts and the brilliance of its 12W LED blades. The Viridian soundboard even boasted an “onboard menu,” simplifying weapon customization. Destiny, however, had different plans. My ordered Qui-Gon Replica hilt arrived damaged, leaving me without a saber for an extended period. Over time, new companies emerged, each striving to craft the most accurate, durable, and vibrant sabers. Reflecting on that era amuses me now, as my current perspective no longer endorses these products. You might have heard certain stories about these companies.
Nonetheless, they undeniably left a significant impact on the saber community, and credit is due for that alone. My subsequent acquisition was the Ultimate Works x Wonderforce Flextana, which spoke to me greatly due to my affinity for Japanese katanas. Unfortunately, it proved to be far from my ideal choice, as its unconventional shape made spinning it challenging. Consequently, I parted with it and went on a journey of acquiring and selling hilts. Throughout this process, I discerned subtle differences in factors such as comfort, technology, craftsmanship, durability, brightness, and weight. It was during this time that I realized one truly knows what they desire in a hilt only after experiencing a wide variety of them.
Honestly, my memory is not crystal clear, so I can’t recall the exact order of the sabers in my collection. But let me share a list of hilts I’ve cherished during my passionate journey (not including my current collection):
- Ultrasabers Prophecy V1
- Saberforge Guardian
- Vaders Vault Hero
- Vaders Vault Havoc (One of my all-time favorites)
- KRx OR Ahsoka Shoto Gen 1 with Master Chassis
- Electrum Sabercrafts Evo-Flex
- Sabertrio Skylar Gen1
- Ultimate Works x Wonderforce Flextana
- DC Sabers Jericho
- Phoenix Props The Light
- A fully custom built Scrapflex with Krayt Dragon Pearl chamber
- and many more…
Back then I wanted to own something personal, but over time I translated into the “Canon hilts” focussing more and more on small details and screen-accuracy. I learned a loth thanks to the RPF. Nowadays I’m mostly interested in static hilts that are as close as possible. It’s been a crazy journey, let me tell you. It even forced me to get out of my comfort zone and starting to use/learn certain tools and skills to modify my own hilts and make them more or less authentic.