Form VI – Niman
- by DB Barrett
“For superior balance, use the Niman Form. This Form has no specific strengths, but no weaknesses, either.”
Form VI, also known as Niman, The Moderation Form and the Diplomat’s Form, was a hybrid martial art created by effectively combining the elements of the previous five lightsaber forms into a generalized style. Niman balances out the specializations of each of the prior forms, learning many of their basic technques, but focusing primarily on balance. As a result, this form lacked any significant advantage, but lacked the drawbacks of the prior forms – its practitioners were almost never as exposed as some of the more aggressive or specialized Forms.
“It is often referred to as the diplomat’s form because it is less intensive in its demands than other disciplines, allowing Jedi to spend more time developing their skills in perception, political strategy, and negotiation.”
Niman had a fairly relaxed approach to bladework, designed as a simple, easily mastered Form for Jedi who preferred to spend most of their time devoted to study or diplomacy.
To compensate for the relaxed emphasis on bladework, however, Niman integrated the Force into its Form, interspersing bladework with Force techniques, such as telekinetic pulls or pushes used in sync with lightsaber strikes. There were two primary manoeuvres in this style.
Pushing Slash: The Pushing Slash saw the wielder slammed the opponent with the Force after scoring a strike with their lightsaber, sending them flying.
Draw Closer: The polar opposite of the Pushing Slash, the Draw Closer saw the Jedi seize a distant enemy with the Force and pull them into the path of their blade.
These basic manoeuvres saw many variations, and many others were born from them – Sith, in particular, used Lightning variations of the Pushing Slash.
Due to its “jack of all trades” status, the success of this Form was largely dependent on its practitioner’s intuition, creativity and improvisation, rather than the rote responses derived from other Forms.
Due to the relaxed focus on bladework, it has been said that a practitioner of Niman would find it almost impossible to defeat a practitioner of Makashi (Form II)
Due to its overall, balanced nature, nearly all Jedi studied this Form. Only one man ever achieved prominence and became absolutely deadly with Niman, and that was in the days of the Old Republic.
Exar Kun. He utilized the form with great success, establishing himself as master duellist. His use of the Form, however, was vicious, abandoning its principle of moderation and striking intensely and physically, overwhelming his opponent. This vicious attacking variation served as a prelude to Exar Kun’s eventual fall to the Dark Side.
Cin Drallig: As weaponmaster of the Jedi Order, Cin Drallig was the most prolific user of Niman near the end of the days of the Republic, teaching its core principles to the Jedi younglings.