Prior to the war, conflict between the Gungans and Naboo were rare, if not nonexistent.
It is unknown how the war began, but the then-current dynasty expired at the height of the war (c. 150 BBY), when the last heir died. Without a ruler, the Naboo elected a Queen to lead them in the war, after which there was a cessation of hostilities.
Naboo mercenary conflict
At some point between 135 and 125 BBY, certain royal houses struck a secret deal with mercenaries to aid them against the Gungans. The Gungans fought back and eventually prevailed, though they lost many lives and some of their swamp cities. Very little was made public about this conflict in Naboo society, and in the years to come, the reality behind it would become a controversial point; for example, a young Palpatine leaked information that revealed the conservative houses, such as his own, to have been behind the deal with the mercenaries, while his father, Cosinga, claimed that Houses Tapalo, Veruna and others among his political opponents, had hired the mercenaries in order to get their hands on certain plasma reserves.
Behind the scenes
There is contradictory information on whether the Gungan–Naboo War ever occurred. One source states that the war occurred between 150 BBY and 121 BBY. The The New Essential Guide to Alien Species states that there was never a war between the Gungans and Naboo, and Queen Amidala says to Boss Nass in Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace that while the Gungans and the Naboo do not always agree, "our two great societies have always lived in peace."
In 2012, the novel Darth Plagueis mentioned the war. Cosinga Palpatine explains to Darth Plagueis, in a scene taking place in 65 BBY, that, "some two decades after our own conflict with them, the Gungans found themselves embroiled in a war for survival with a mercenary army." Since that would place the first conflict at c. 155 BBY and the second at c. 135 BBY, it is possible that "the Gungan–Naboo War" refers to the overall period of hostilities.
- Darth Plagueis (Mentioned only)
- Inside the Worlds of Star Wars: Episode I (First mentioned)
- The New Essential Chronology
- The New Essential Guide to Alien Species