Thursday 9 December 2010

An even longer time ago in a galaxy far, far away

Guest post by John Rivers

Over the past sixteen years one of the biggest areas of expansion in the mythology of Star Wars has been the ancient history of the Galactic Republic, how it was formed and the conflict between the Jedi and the Sith, especially during the first Sith War.

This period is likely to become the focus of even greater attention next year when Star Wars: The Old Republic is launched. RPG specialists Bioware are developing the game having already created the amazing Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic as well as classics such as Baldur’s Gate, Mass Effect and Dragon Age. This is the first MMORPG for Bioware, which will have hardcore gamers salivating as well as all wannabe Jedi.

This period of Star Wars history was first explored by Kevin J Anderson and his Tales of the Jedi series first released in 1993. The comic series expanded the ancient universe over the next decade while the books remained focused on the Clone Wars and adventures beyond Return of the Jedi. Then in 2006 Darth Bane: Path of Destruction was released. Focusing on a later period of the Old Republic* the Darth Bane novels tell of resurrection of the Sith and the institution of the ‘Rule of Two’.

This year the Bane novels were joined by The Old Republic series, commissioned to help promote the forthcoming MMORPG, with characters based on those found in the game, for a sneak preview I suggest you check out The Old Republic: Fatal Alliance. Even better is that you can get your Old Republic fix for free too. This year saw the release of Lost Tribe of the Sith a series of free ebooks available to download. The story of a downed Sith ship and a crew desperate to survive, the series is a prequel to the Fate of the Jedi novels but stands out in its own right as a good story in an episodic format.

I also recommend checking out Titan’s new Star Wars Galaxy series available from WH Smiths. As well as telling Old Republic stories, it also focuses on Vader’s hunt for any remaining Jedi following Revenge of the Sith and stories of the future of the Star Wars universe.

So by looking back there’s plenty to look forward to in the universe of Star Wars!

You can pre-order Star Wars: The Old Republic now.

*The Star Wars universe has its own ‘Anno Domini moment’ with the Battle of Yavin and the destruction of the first Death Star. Therefore The Old Republic is set 3656 BBY (Before Battle of Yavin) while Darth Bane: Path of Destruction is set approx 1000 BBY. The Empire Strikes Back is set 3 ABY, you get the idea.

John Rivers is an award-winning digital marketing bod who lives in North London with his cat. A long time movie and TV fan, he writes a rather 'Angry' blog about Doctor Who, while also moderating on Gallifrey Base, the net's biggest Doctor Who forum. In a monster smackdown, he'd be on Gamera's side.

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