In Return of the Jedi when the Rebel group of Luke, Han and co. are captured by the Ewoks, Luke tells C-3P0 to act as the 'God' figure the Ewoks believe him to be.

Why doesn't Luke use the Jedi mind trick to secure the group's release? Does this trick even work on Ewoks?

  • Mind tricks work on weak minded individuals; Are Ewoks weak minded as a species ?
    – Max
    May 5, 2019 at 20:42
  • 1
    @Max do they work on all humans? May 5, 2019 at 21:03
  • 2
    These are not the annoyingly cute spear-wielding teddy bears you're looking for... May 6, 2019 at 2:52

1 Answer 1


Luke seems to be wary of directly interposing himself into the situation (which presumably included trying Jedi mind tricks) to try to influence a group of individuals when he doesn't really know the power-dynamics at play.

“Careful, Chewie,” Han cautioned from across the square. “He must be the head honcho.” “No,” Threepio corrected, “actually I believe he’s their Medicine Man.”
Luke was about to intervene, then decided to wait. It would be better if this serious little community came to its own conclusions about them, in its own way. The Ewoks seemed curiously grounded for a people so airborne.

Return of the Jedi: Official Novelisation

Instead he opts for a more forthright solution (but one that falls short of outright violence), by playing on their superstitious credulity.

As to the specific question of whether Ewoks can be 'tricked', the Star Wars RPG (Saga Edition) Core rulebook indicates that Ewoks are certainly smart enough to be tricked (they have an above class-3 intellect) and are insufficiently strong-willed to win a defensive roll against an experienced Jedi Master if they want to use their 'affect mind' skill on an individual Ewok.

That being said, it's also made clear that affecting 10+ individuals that you can't directly communicate with is next to impossible, so in this particular circumstance Luke might have been able to scare the Ewoks with a Force affect, but he wouldn't have been able to trick them into releasing him willingly.

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  • great info as always and is a reason why Luke doesn't try but doesn't say that he can't. May 5, 2019 at 21:08
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    For the record, the Star Wars RPG doesn't list a resistance to mind tricks as being a species trait of the Ewoks.
    – Valorum
    May 5, 2019 at 21:13
  • @Valorum Not sure which you checked, but d6 (West End Games) and d20 (Wizards of the Coast) don't have it. I'm not sure if Ewoks ever appeared in the Fantasy Flight Games version. May 5, 2019 at 22:07
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    @Thunderforge - I just rummaged through the core rulebooks for the Star Wars RPG and Saga Edition RPG.
    – Valorum
    May 5, 2019 at 22:37

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