Lightsabers are the most revered weapons in the Star Wars universe. It’s why they’re the weapons of choice for the most powerful wielders of the Force. Though they’re seemingly unrivaled, that’s not entirely the case – they’re not magic, after all. Yes, there are, in fact, different kinds of armors and weapons that can beat a lightsaber, or at the very least withstand them. Some of the coolest Star Wars weapons aren’t even lightsabers, for that matter.
Let’s face it, it would be pretty lame if the Jedi were able to win every single fight by virtue of their indestructible weapons. There needs to be some drama!
Let’s take a look at what can stop a lightsaber: weapons and armor, and the material they’re made of. You might be surprised by how unexpected some of these things are. On the other hand, you might not be. It is Star Wars,after all.
Mandalorian iron, or “beskar” in native Mando’a, could only be found on its namesake’s planet or its moon. It is a very durable material and thus capable of withstanding lightsabers. The Mandalorians used it in their weapons, armor, and starships.
Phrik is a material that doesn’t just boast an awesome name, it’s also lightsaber resistant. It was a very light metal that was generally forged into armor more than weapons, but Palpatine’s lightsaber was made of it. It was so strong that a container of phrik actually survived the destruction of Alderaan.
Cortosis is a type of ore that actually causes lightsabers to short out upon contact. However, it is brittle, so repeated strikes would ultimately break it. It was often woven into body armor, most notably for shadowtroopers. Purified cortosis was called Cortosis-Shield and was used by Roan Fel’s Imperial Knights.
Songsteel is an extremely light but very strong metal that was used to forge intricate swords and staves. Jedi Master Darrus Jeht once wielded a songsteel sword in a practice duel, successfully blocking the attacks of two lightsabers. The Master in Violet used a fighting staff made from a songsteel shard, as well. The Patriots of the Jade Empire often used songsteel in their swords.
IG-100 MagnaGuards wield electrostaffs, weapons with electromagnetic pulse generating tips. They are made of a phrik alloy, a lightsaber-resistent material in its own right. General Grievous wielded an electrostaff, as did Count Dooku’s bodyguards.
Orbalisks are parasitic creatures with a carapace that could withstand lightsaber attacks, potentially due to the fact that they could feed on the dark side of the Force itself. Darth Bane wore orbalisk armor.
The amphistaff is a genetically engineered snake created by the Yuuzhan Vong. This fully organic biotech is wielded like something between a staff and a whip, and is also capable of attacking on its own, as it is indeed a living serpent. They were capable of wrapping around the blade of a lightsaber. As if snakes weren’t terrifying enough already…
Felucian Skullblades were almost exclusively found on the planet of Felucia, where they were wielded by indigenous warriors. Though a primitive weapon, made from the skulls of the planet’s fierce fauna, they were indeed able to deflect lightsabers when imbued with the Force. The reason for this was that the creatures of the planet had naturally occurring Force-reactive crystals in their bones.
Neuranium is an extremely dense metal that was almost too heavy to use. It would be woven into materials as a supplement with the intent of strengthening against such things as lightsabers, but it could not be forged into weapons or armor on its own. It was used in the statue of Sistros, inside of which Palpatine hid his lightsaber.
Z6 Riot Control Baton
The Z6 riot control baton, or Z6 baton, is the weapon wielded by First Order stormtroopers in The Force Awakens, during the Battle of Takodana. The weapons had a central shaft terminating in two contact conductor vanes. Electromagnetic gloves must be worn to wield them.
Ultrachrome is a superconductive metal that was used to forge armor. Most famously, Kar Vastor’s Akk Guard vibroshields were made of ultrachrome. However, if the shields were subjected to too much lightsaber energy they could melt.