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In the movie Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, I am wondering why Darth Sidious didn't detect Yoda's presence inside the Galactic Senate building until Yoda walked into his office and also as to why he was surprised by Yoda coming there.

Darth Sidious was someone who liked to brag a lot about how he was able to foresee future events, so its a bit of mystery to me as to why he was surprised by Yoda coming there and also as to why he hadn't foreseen having such a huge battle with Yoda inside the Galactic Senate building.

I think this was a mistake on the part of George Lucas. I think the way he should have written this scene in the movie is that Yoda walks into his office, takes out the two guards, Darth Sidious then turns his chair towards Yoda and says, "Master Yoda, you survived just like I had foreseen. You should not have come back here, I highly suggest that you surrender!" Yoda refuses and the two of them go on to battle just like it was shown in the movie.

Why didn't Darth Sidious detect Yoda inside the Galactic Senate building before Yoda walked into his office?

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  • Possible duplicate of scifi.stackexchange.com/q/111737/120088
    – Shade
    Nov 15 '20 at 16:21
  • @Shade, I don't think Force Suppression is a Light Side power and I don't think Yoda would have used it against Darth Sidious because I think Yoda would have wanted Darth Sidious to detect him perhaps in the hope that Darth Sidious would leave the Galactic Senate building to avoid a confrontation with him.
    – user126715
    Nov 15 '20 at 16:29
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    @user255577 Yoda clearly went there to have a confrontation with Sidious. He even prevents Sidious from leaving the building: "If so powerful you are, why leave?"
    – F1Krazy
    Nov 15 '20 at 16:40
  • @F1Krazy, that's true. I'm just saying that I think that Yoda wouldn't have bothered with trying to hide his presence from Sidious because he was overconfident that he could defeat Sidious once he met him face-to-face.
    – user126715
    Nov 15 '20 at 16:49
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There's a lot in play here

  1. Sidious thought Yoda was dead (he literally says "Master Yoda, you survived" in reaction to seeing him). Order 66 had seen to the death of most of the Jedi since it took them by surprise
  2. Any Jedi that had survived would presumably be trying to hide from the Republic Imperial Army, not march into his office on Coruscant
  3. Sidious is notoriously overconfident. His grand plan (now decades in the making) had finally come to fruition. He's not on guard for any last-minute surprises (we see this also happen in Return of the Jedi)
  4. Neither he, nor Anakin/Vader, seem to know Obi-Wan is still alive in A New Hope or they would have hunted him down. The same could be said for Yoda. It's a safe assumption they can hide their presence to some extent to avoid detection.

Putting it all together, Palpatine is either resting in contentedness or distracted when Yoda comes into his office. It's the sudden disturbance in the Force (plus the racket of his guards falling to the floor) that alerts him something is wrong.

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    Those are all good points you make. I suppose then it may be safe to say that since Darth Sidious was so overconfident in that no Jedi would survive and come back to challenge him, he let his guard down, and due to it being down, he was not focused on sensing for any presence of Jedi on Coruscant, and this allowed Yoda to 'slip under the radar' and make it all the way to his office undetected.
    – user126715
    Nov 15 '20 at 21:02
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    But Vader certainly was not expecting a Jedi inside the Death Star, either.
    – SJuan76
    Nov 16 '20 at 0:52
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    Also, force users seem inconsistent (at best!) at being able to passively detect other force users. Just look at how long Sidious sat on the senate/as chancellor, practically rubbing elbows with Jedi Masters (including Yoda), without any of them detecting that he was actually a Sith Lord and powerful Force user.
    – aroth
    Nov 16 '20 at 2:23
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    Neither he, nor Anakin/Vader, seem to know Obi Wan is still alive in A New Hope. Why would Vader think Obi Wan would be dead? Last time he saw him, Obi Wan was victorious over him and just left Nov 16 '20 at 7:10
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    @Jesse It is ongoing. But its main purpose was to kill the Jedi without warning. My point was that with Kenobi having survived the initial purge, I would think Vader's assumptions would lean to "Kenobi's alive" unless given some reason to think otherwise. Nov 16 '20 at 22:41