Empire's End is a trade paperback collecting a series of comic books written by Tom Veitch and illustrated by Jim Baikie, published in 1997. As part of the Star Wars Expanded Universe, it is the final book in the Dark Empire trilogy, which began with Dark Empire I and continued with Dark Empire II.


Seven years after the Galactic Empire's defeat at the Battle of Endor and the establishment of the New Republic, the galaxy is once again threatened by Emperor Palpatine, resurrected in a series of clone bodies and seeking to once again rule his Empire. He finds the perfect tool in the "Galaxy Gun," a superweapon that could hold the entire universe under his sway. After perishing in battle with Luke and Leia Skywalker in Dark Empire I, Palpatine was forced to occupy an inferior clone-body. Unbeknownst to him, his personal physician had been suborned by his official successor, Carnor Jax, backed by a number of other high-ranking Imperial personnel. The physician deliberately inserted genetic material and contaminants into all stored samples of the Emperor's original body, to the effect that these bodies would be nowhere as resistant to the ravaging effects of the Dark side as the original. The last remaining clone body undestroyed by Luke or traitorous Imperials is now aging rapidly, and Palpatine's final, irrevocable end is near unless he can either fix his genetic material (an impossibility since no unadulterated samples remain) or insert his spirit into another body. After consulting with ancient Sith Lords on the mausoleum planet Korriban, Palpatine learns that Anakin Solo, the infant son of Leia and Han Solo, is the only workable body. After an attack on Byss, in which the second Eclipse-class Star Destroyer, the Eclipse II, is steered into the Galaxy Gun by R2-D2, and a projectile from the Gun was shot into Byss (destroying Byss utterly), Palpatine followed the Solos to Onderon. After being killed by an unexpected blaster bolt from Han Solo, he desperately tried to force his spirit into the infant Anakin Solo, but was balked by the dying Jedi Empatojayos Brand, who made the ultimate sacrifice, willingly sending his eternal soul into the "madness beyond death" that is the dark side to ensure Palpatine would go as well, and could never return.