After Luke cuts off Darth Vader's hand in Return of the Jedi, Vader cries out. However, I can't tell if his yell is due to an artificial sense of pain or just due to shock or some other psychological factor. That led me to wonder, is there any legends or canon material that indicates whether Darth Vader has an artificial sense of touch in his prosthetics? It seems as though coordination and fighting would be very difficult without any feeling in his artificial limbs. If he had no sense of feeling in his prosthetic limbs, did it impact his fighting abilities?

  • Maybe the Force makes up for his lack of feeling? Sort of like Luke's blindfolded lightsaber training?
    – user14111
    Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 7:57
  • 1
    Luke could; youtube.com/watch?v=cik8cl_n9AE, and so could Anakin.
    – Valorum
    Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 8:07
  • I've read books which confirm that he can feel them - whether artificially or more naturally I'm not sure. I'd have thought @Valorum would have lots of good references for this?
    – ThruGog
    Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 9:36
  • I think we can assume he can unless there are references to the contrary. Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 18:28
  • Thanks everyone. @Valorum, I'd forgotten about that scene, I agree that it makes it safe to assume Vader has some sense of feeling in his prosthetics.
    – Gecko
    Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 20:42

1 Answer 1


According to the Star Wars: Blueprints - The Ultimate Collection, Vader's 'cybernetic prosthetics' interface directly with his nerves. We can be reasonable certain that like Luke's hand and Anakin's original robotic hand, Vader's prosthetics also offer some level of tactile feedback.

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  • But Luke's hand was a newer model. Say, Anakin's hand must have interfaced with his nerves directly as well, but do we know if he felt it? I think I also read somewhere on this site that Palpatine intentionally kept Vader's armour underdeveloped. Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 20:58
  • @Gallifreyan - The technology seems pretty advanced and I don't think Vader's was especially more (or less) sophisticated than Luke's, just a different model.
    – Valorum
    Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 21:06
  • I'm sure there's a quote from a novel which explains that he could feel, but at least at first it was quite clumsy and awkward. Does that ring a bell to anyone with a collection of books?
    – ThruGog
    Commented Apr 8, 2017 at 21:39

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