Count Dooku Lightsaber Guide

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Count Dooku, masterfully portrayed by the late great Christopher Lee, dazzled audiences with his debut in Star Wars: Episode II, Attack of the Clones and sang his swan song in Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith. Audiences were able to get another taste of this suave villain in animated form through watching Star Wars: Clone Wars.

Before his climactic duel in Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith, Dooku flipped back his cape when confronted by the Jedi duo, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker. The gesture was very deliberate, showing the Jedi that the Sith apprentice did not fear them. It revealed the hilt of his weapon tucked into his belt, a curved hilt. This was the first glance audiences had of a new kind of lightsaber.

Bottomline on Count Dooku’s Lightsaber

Like most Sith blades, Count Dooku’s lightsaber is red-bladed. Count Dooku’s weapon is special because it has a curved hilt rather than the traditional straight hilt. Dooku’s lightsaber is sometimes referred to as Darth Tyranus’s lightsaber or Dooku’s Sith lightsaber.


Count Dooku Light Saber
Image by Star Wars Fandom

Count Dooku was a Padawan of Yoda and Yoda is the only Jedi known to have mastered all seven forms of lightsaber fencing. In consequence, Dooku could choose to study any form he wished. Regardless, he chose to study one form and one form only. The second form. The form of dueling.

Once the Padawan had made the transition into Jedi Master, Dooku did not want his dueling weapon to be limited, however, so he made his own lightsaber. Dooku studied the Jedi archives to create a personalized weapon to suit his style of fighting. Much like what we would know of in real life as the Filipino barong sword, Dooku’s weapon had a curved hilt. This unique design allowed for more slashing power and more economy of movement when thrusting. The curved hilt also allowed for greater control.

While still a Jedi, Dooku’s blade emitted a blue light. After the death of Qui-Gon Jinn, however, Dooku left the Jedi order and switched his lightsaber to a red kyber crystal, as what the Sith use.

The thing to understand about Dooku’s saber is that the weapon, his style, and his character could all be summed up in one word. Sophisticated. Evil as he was, Dooku was still a count. The unique design of the curved hilt allowed Dooku to employ a style that had less emphasis on power and more emphasis on finesse.

The Betrayal of Jak’Zin

Betrayal of Jak'Zin
Image by Star Wars Fandom

Sometime after the death of Dooku’s Padawan Qui-Gon Jinn but before the First Battle of Geonosis, a young, tiger-headed, Togrorian Jedi Knight by the name of Jak’Zin arrived on planet Sullust. He was there to investigate the Kaldana Syndicate but he ran into Count Dooku.

Dooku said that the young Jedi’s mission might be dangerous, so it might be a good idea to have “an old man” like Dooku tag along. Jak’Zin had been a youngling at the Jedi temple when Dooku was Yoda’s Padawan. Jak’Zin and the other younglings would watch with excitement whenever Dooku and Yoda sparred with their lightsabers. His sense of nostalgia caused Jak’Zin to allow the Count to tag along.

The duo wound up in a fierce firefight with several Kaldana Syndicate gangsters. Using their lightsabers, the pair were able to deflect the beams from the gangsters’ blasters and slay all of the gangsters.

To his dismay, however, Jak’Zin noticed that Dooku’s signature curve-hilted lightsaber emitted a red beam, the color of the Sith. The conversation proceeded as follows,

“That lightsaber. It’s—Where did you get that?”
“I made it, of course.”

That was the last Jak’Zin heard before Dooku used the Force to telekinetically lift and fire a Kaldana blaster from one of the slaughtered gangsters. The beam entered Jak’Zin’s back, killing the young Togrorian Jedi instantly.

The First Battle of Geonosis

First Battle of Geonosis
Image from Star Wars Fandom

After the Jedi and their clone army defeated Dooku’s droid forces, Dooku began to retreat. Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker challenged him. This was the first time audiences saw Dooku’s lightsaber dueling style on the big screen. Dooku basically toyed with the two Jedi. He could fight them both simultaneously and more than hold his own.

Through superior defensive movement, he could avoid Kenobi’s attacks and set up his counters, badly cutting the Jedi’s arms and legs and removing him from the fight. In addition to force lightning, he would use the same counter against Skywalker, forcing Skywalker’s blade to the side and lopping off one of the young Jedi’s arms.

Dooku might have finished off both Jedi had Yoda not shown up. The Count tried to use force lighting against his former master, but it was useless against the Jedi Grandmaster. The former Padawan accepted this and simply stated the obvious,

“It is obvious that this contest cannot be decided by our knowledge of the Force but by our skills with a lightsaber.”

All the mangled Kenobi and Skywalker could do was watch helplessly as Master and former Padawan dueled. It was a stalemate. Although the Count couldn’t beat Yoda, Yoda wasn’t able to beat him either.

This was a feat far better than what Darth Maul could do. Before Annakin became Darth Vader, Dooku was probably the third most powerful duelist of his day, after Darth Sidious and Yoda. That would make sense since Dooku had received instruction from both Sidious and Yoda.

Melee With The Night Sisters

When Darth Sidious felt threatened by the growing power of Asajj Ventress, he requested Dooku to have her killed. Although Dooku obeyed, Ventress survived the attempt.

Swearing vengeance, Ventress and two of her fellow night sisters tried to assassinate Dooku. The Count fought them off with his curve-hilted lightsaber.

Hondo Ohnaka

The Weequay pirate Hondo Ohnaka captured Count Dooku and stole his lightsaber briefly. He produced the Count’s distinctive curve-hilted lightsaber to show proof of capture. Yoda recognized the lightsaber and was able to verify that it indeed belonged to Dooku.

Lom Pyke

Lom Pyke
Image from Star Wars

Sifu-Dyas was responsible for creating the clone army from the DNA of Jango Fett. When Dooku decided he wanted Sifo-Dyas eliminated, he used the Pyke syndicate to help lure this Master Jedi into a trap.

When Kenobi and Skywalker investigated the situation and met with Lom Pyke, the leader of the Pyke Syndicate, it was revealed that Count Dooku and Darth Tyrannus were the same.

When Lom Pyke switched sides and ordered his warriors to kill Dooku and help the Jedi, the Count had no problem using his lightsaber to defeat the Pyke warriors. Before Kenobi and Skywalker could stop him, Count Dooku killed Lom Pyke with his lightsaber.

Training (Ventress, Oppress, Grievous, Sidious, Yoda)

Dooku proved not only to be an apt student, having been trained by both Darth Sidious and Yoda, but also a competent teacher. His pupils included Asajj Ventress, Savage Oppress, and General Grievous, who all went on to slay some powerful Jedi successfully.

Last Stand at the Invisible Hand

Invisible Hand
Image from Star Wars Fandom

When Dooku met the Jedi duo for the second time on the big screen, it was on Grievous’s ship, the Invisible Hand, during the Battle of Coruscant. This time, Senator Palpatine was Dooku’s “prisoner.”

The duel began like their previous one. Dooku used the curved handle of his lightsaber to deliver deft strokes with one hand while fighting both Jedi simultaneously. He quickly incapacitated Kenobi and pinned the Jedi Master under part of the ship.

Skywalker, however, was a different story. As Skywalker’s anger intensified, his attacks seemed to get better too. Soon, he was no longer the underdog but held his own against the Count. Skywalker even caught the Count with his counter when the Count intensified his attacks. He forced the Count’s blade to the side and brought it down on Dooku’s wrists, lopping off both hands.

Before Dooku died, he learned to his horror he had been simply a pawn in Palpatine’s game the whole time. Dooku’s only real purpose was to be a placeholder. The real apprentice had been Skywalker the whole time.

Dooku took one last sad glance at his old master Palpatine before the Sith Lord ordered Skywalker to decapitate Dooku with the Count’s own weapon. With the death of Count Dooku, the last was seen of Dooku’s lightsaber so far.


“That lightsaber. It’s—Where did you get that?”
“I made it, of course.”

Count Dooku to Jedi Knight Jak’Zin before murdering him.

“It is obvious that this contest cannot be decided by our knowledge of the Force but by our skills with a lightsaber.”

Count Dooku to Yoda before their duel.

“I’ve probably done more sword fights on celluloid than any actor in history, and this fight is greater than anything I’ve ever been involved in.”

Christopher Lee in the Attack of the Clones “Action Featurette”

Christopher Lee on Dooku’s Lightsaber

When Christopher Lee graced the earth with his presence, he was known to be a master fencer in real life and had already accumulated a massive amount of on-screen sword combat work. Regardless, he said that his combat scenes for the Star Wars series were “greater than anything I’ve been involved in.” Due to the unusual shape of the sword hilt and the usual style employed by his character, Lee had to learn a new style of fighting, as explained in the Attack of the Clones “Action Featurette.”

For the weapon’s design, Art Department Assistant Roel Robles was inspired by various traditional Filipino martial arts weapons: swords, knives, and spears. Among them, the Barong had a curved handle that gave the combatant a firmer grip.

The Legacy of the Curved Hilt

Count Dooku’s unique weapon became very popular with fans, so it did not stay unique for long. Other characters in the Star Wars universe to sport a curved hilt included Asajj Ventress and Ahsoka Tano.

Asajj Ventress

Asajj Ventress
Image from Star Wars Fandom

Dooku’s pupil, Asajj Ventress, naturally learned how to use a curve-hilted saber. The Nightsister assassin preferred to use two curve-hilted lightsabers at once. She was also capable of joining both curve-hilted sabers to form a saber-staff.

With those twin curve-hilted lightsabers, Ventress dueled with many impressive foes: Savage Oppress, Maul, Kenobi, Skywalker, and even Dooku himself. She also managed to cause the death of some formidable Jedi, including Masters Glaive and Fay.

Ahsoka Tano

When the fallen Jedi Barriss Offee stole Ventress’s weapons, she used them to attack Ahsoka Tano. When Anakin Skywalker confronted Offee and forced her to defend herself with the two curve-hilted lightsabers, he proved that the Mirialan had masqueraded as Ventress and framed Tano for the bombing plot that had resulted in the deaths of several Jedi, humans, and clones.

Having been wrongfully accused and expelled from the Jedi order, Tano decided not to rejoin even after her innocence had been proven. This decision was fortuitous for Tano as it allowed her to survive the Great Jedi Purge of Order 66.

To fake her death, she abandoned the two straight-hilted, green-bladed lightsabers she had wielded as a Jedi. A year later, she fashioned her own pair of white-bladed lightsabers. Perhaps she had learned something from her melee with Barriss Offee, for her new pair of weapons had curved hilts. Unlike Ventress, however, only one saber was standard size. The other was a shoto, a short lightsaber like what had been used by Yoda and the pair used by the Inquisitor 10th Brother.

Armed with these curve-hilted sabers, Tano was able to accomplish a lot. She was able to battle against multiple inquisitors and even stand against her former Master, Darth Vader.

Darth Tyranus’s Lightsaber IRL (In Real Life)

As we come to the end of 2022, we find ourselves in a dangerous world. Luckily, you don’t have to succumb to the dark side and become a Sith Lord to be armed like one.



Zimmerlabs has a very expensive ($1499.99) Neopixel Dooku-blade with the following specs:

  • NBV4 by Plecter Labs
  • 288 Neopixel rab LEDs
  • Flash on clash (any color)
  • 3 sound fonts (can be modified to the color of the blade)
  • 7/8″ string blade (These can be any color user chooses and are removable and interchangeable.)
  • Activation button using gold triangle and custom acrylic display stand
  • Stainless steel polishing



For the more frugal Sith Lord, consider the Count Mk3 by SaberForge at $299.99. The blade is sold out at this time, but nothing stays dead in the Star Wars universe. Its frugal nature is probably possible because it is DIY (do-it-yourself) installation product. For this purpose, included in the DIY kit are the following:

  • 3D printed Hyper low profile chassis (Strong-X 90mpa tensile strength resin)
  • Micro tactile switch
  • 3C printed switch holder (strong-X resin)
  • High bass switch speaker
  • INRI18650 battery
  • Reinforced male thread-in connector

Separately, you will need to purchase the following to complete the installation:

  • Soundboard
  • Recharge port
  • Thread-in blade


Question: What color was Dooku’s lightsaber?

Answer: Red and blue. We all know his lightsaber as red because when he actually fought, he was introduced as Darth Tyranus, the Sith Lord apprentice of Darth Sidious. Before he turned to the dark side, however, he used a blue lightsaber. Even when he became a Master and forged his own curved-hilted lightsaber, he used a blue blade until he left the Jedi order.

Question: Was Magellan killed with a Barong?

Answer: No. While the Portuguese conquistador Magellan was supposedly killed by King Lapu Lapu with a Filipino sword, it Lapu Lapu did not use the Barong that inspired Dooku’s weapon. The legend is that Magellan was killed in single combat by King Lapu Lapu with a type of straight-hilted Filipino sword called the Kampilan. The Barong was a sword used by the Muslim Filipino peoples of the Southern Philippines. King Lapu Lapu ruled in the central part of the Philippines and was not a Muslim but a Visayan animist.

Question: Why wasn’t Dooku’s curve-hilted lightsaber more popular among Jedi?

Answer: Dooku’s weapon was catered to his fencing style, Form II,  which was focused on dueling with other lightsaber wielders. During the generation before the Galactic Empire, Sith Lords were thought to be extinct. Jedi didn’t think it practical to train to fight other Jedi since all Jedi were supposed to be good. Practical Jedi combat training at the time involved deflecting blaster beams and fighting against multiple, less skilled opponents. Thus, their weapons were suited to a different style of fighting than Dooku’s.

Question: How did Anakin defeat Dooku if he couldn’t defeat Obi-Wan?

Answer: Good question. Dooku easily outclassed Obi-Wan not once but twice. Obi-Wan also easily vanquished Darth Vader, not once but twice. Even Yoda couldn’t defeat Dooku the way Anakin did in their second duel, so how was it possible?
I have a series that, just like everything in Revenge of the Sith, was Palpatine’s doing. Palpatine was his era’s most powerful force wielder, even outclassing Yoda. It’s possible that the very presence of Darth Sidious was enough to tip the balance in a duel between two force-wielders. Considering the other feats accomplished by the Sith Lord, hiding among the Jedi in plain sight and using force lightning to demolish an orbiting star fleet from a planet’s surface, influencing a duel would not be beyond the capabilities of Darth Sidious.


Count Dooku may have been evil, but he definitely wasn’t dull. His character didn’t get as much screen time as many would have liked, and Christopher Lee will be sorely missed. Regardless, this curve-hilted blade of this charismatic character lives on in the hearts of fans worldwide, if not the galaxy.

When Lucas created Dooku, he wanted a sophisticated villain in contrast to the acrobatic, Zabrak death machine that was Darth Maul. A unique weapon amplified Lee’s excellent portrayal to match his character’s unique fighting style. The fact that Dooku saw himself as not only a Count and a Sith Lord but also as a duelist adds a new dimension to the character. His customized blade showed him to be a true warrior and a critical thinker.

Rather than a cartoon villain, Dooku was simply a human who made some very bad decisions. Unfortunately, with the mystical powers wielded by the Sith and Jedi of the Star Wars universe, bad decisions have the power to wipe out planets.

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