The introduction of the new character known as The Inquisitor for Star Wars Rebels has also introduced a new variant on lightsaber design.
While it is clear that this is a double-bladed lightsaber, the size of the hilt and the circular construct attached to the blade raise some interesting questions about how this blade will operate and how it would be used in a fight.
Initial impressions of the designs were that it appears to be inspired or at least similar to a Hasbro toy, the “General Grievous Electronic Double Lightsaber.”
A Single Hilt?
The relative size of the ring and the hilts in the Grievous saber are significantly different from the Inquisitor’s lightsaber. The Grievous toy has two hilts that attach to the outside of the gyro-grip, whereas the Inquisitor’s single hilt seems to be almost entirely within the circular construct. This allows you to use the Grievous toy as if it where to separate lightsabers, much in the way that Asajj Ventress was able to unite and detach her lightsaber hilts.
If you look closely at the Inquisitor’s blade it does not appear that much more than the end of the emitter nozzle is attached to the ring. This indicates to me that if the lightsaber hilt is removable from the ring it would be removable as a single piece instead of as two separate hilts.
If you look at the size of the Inquisitor’s hilt in relation to his hand it also appears possible that this is a blade that is designed for one handed fighting, fitting both hands onto the hilt would be a rather tight squeeze. Using a double-bladed lightsaber with a single handed fighting technique strikes me as rather difficult.
Does It Spin?
The question of whether or not the Inquistor’s lightsaber will have gyroscopic ability is both suggested and negated by the design. The main problem I have with the idea of the blades spinning is that it would suggest the hilt stays in a fixed position. The problem with this is that such a small portion of the lightsaber is attached to the ring that it would not maintain a connection with the components of the lightsaber necessary to generate the energy blade.
I do believe it is likely that the blade is gyroscopic based on other design elements however. If you look at the construction of the ring there are four components. There is the inner most black ring, then a small silver ring, then the large grey ring, and finally around emitter nozzle themselves are these the hooked outcroppings.
Now if you examine the exterior of the ring, it appears that the large grey ring features a recessed track that these hooked outcroppings sit in and could rotate around. This implies to me that the blades will move around the outside of the ring.
It is a little tough to tell based on the angle of the only image we have of this lightaber, but it appears that the hilt is not set within the middle of the ring, but instead sits on the surface of one side of the ring and is perhaps magnetically attached (like the Mandolorian’s jet packs). In this case the hooked outcroppings could be part of the locking mechanism that unite the hilt to the ring.
A Possible Explanation
If the blade does not spin, then what purpose could this ring serve? It could be a uniquely designed crossguard, a feature common to swords. I can imagine this being a cortosis infused crossguard that the Inquisitor can used to short out Jedi lightsaber blades while in the middle of a duel.
The possible use of cortosis in the crossguard and the Inquisitors armor has me wondering if there is some Shadowtrooper inspiration behind the character.
Whatever the exact functionality of this lightsaber ends up being, I can’t wait to see it in action.
Video of the Grievous Lightsaber in action: