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In Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, we learn that long before the original Republic, the galaxy was ruled by the Builder Empire, an oppressive regime of dark-side Rakata who used the dark side of the force to power enormous weapons like the Star Forge, a prism of malice that dwarfs the Death Star. But the Builders were undone when their race was swept with a mysterious plague that stripped them of their Force powers and left them unable to command their war machines.

Is the origin of the plague ever explained? I don't recall hearing one in either Old Republic games. Nor do I know of any extended universe fiction that delves into the matter. Does anyone know of any explanation?

Personally I like to imagine the plague being generated reflexively by the Force in resistance to the Builders' abuse of it - much as in the way it resisted Darth Plagueis - but if a non-speculative explanation exists I'd love to hear it!

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    I've heard that it was genetically engineered by the peoples that the Rakata were oppressing. – Ryan K Apr 13 '15 at 0:38
  • Could be anything, it's not canon – Gaius Apr 13 '15 at 6:49
  • Rakata are mentioned extensivley in SWTOR MMO but nothing about why they died out. As far as i remember Eshka fought them fiercly and some Rakata overlords were too powerfull so they were Imprisoned ( Soa, the guy in a Rakata prison on belsavis, the guy on tattoine etc. ) Maybe they imprisoned each other to extinction?? – Cherubel Apr 13 '15 at 12:50
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    The general gist is that it hit right when they were weak after a bout of infighting (I can't remember if the "empire" was still standing in any sense at this point). So it's implied their enemies had something to do with it, but never confirmed; it may have been a mutation on an existing plague. It was certainly taken advantage of though. Most Rakata off their homeworld got hunted down, and without their force-toys the ones on homeworld devolved and settled into more killing each other. Unfortunately I have no source for any of this, so I leave it for someone else to answer. – Radhil Apr 13 '15 at 12:53
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There is indeed very little known about this plague.

Sources on wookiepedia say it most likely was a slave species that created the plague, since it only affected the Rakata people who began dying in great numbers.

Eventually, the plague mutated itself and caused the remaining of them to lose their powers.

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