Old Friends: Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa,Lando Calrissian, Emperor Palpatine, Bobba Fett
Ships & Transports: Slave 3, New Republic Star destroyer "Liberator", The World devastators (new imperial super weapon)
Places: Coruscant, and the new home of the re-born Empire "Byss" deep in the galactic core
Review: Set just six years after the battle of Endor. Dark Empire still retains many familiar elements from the original three movies. The new Republic is still very much a fragile government. Having to re build itself from the nearly fatal blows struck against them by Grand Admiral Thrawn. They still find themselves having to use all the resources at hand to hold down the many Imperial forces fighting them and each other for control of the galaxy. This infighting by what is left of the Empire does suit the former rebels, but when strange rumours and new imperial ships start emerging from the galactic core, along with a seemingly gradual pulling together of Imperial forces. The fear is that a new leader is controlling the tattered Empire.
It is not long before the New republic face a truly re born Empire. Commanded by a sinister dark power. Coruscant once again falls under imperial control. And the captured star destroyer "Liberator" commanded by Luke Skywalker and Lando Calrissian is engaged in a battle to free the fallen planet. When the ship crashes, Leia and Han embark on a rescue mission. Landing on a battle ravaged Coruscant they locate Luke and Lando. But Luke believes his destiny lies elsewhere than returning to the new rebel strong hold. Instead he stays and hands himself in to the Imperial forces on the planet. And begins a journey to meet the dark force responsible for the new Empire.
Slowly the true horror of the revitalized Empire is revealed. "World devastators" huge war machines appear and begin a campaign against worlds loyal to the rebel alliance. These vast weapons platforms, even more powerful than the Death star, look like bringing the New Republic to its knees. Luke meanwhile confronts the Dark Jedi and new Leader of the Empire. Only to find out that he is not such a new leader at all. Realising he alone cannot defeat such an immense power from the dark side. He gambles his life and the entire future of the galaxy on crossing to the dark side itself to gain the knowledge to defeat this great evil. Can he hold onto enough of the good in him to return? And can Leia find her brother and help bring him back? These are dark days once again for the galaxy. But great times for comic readers!
Even if you are not a fan of Graphic novels or comics. This is well worth looking at. It not only lays plots for later chapters in the Star Wars timeline. But it is more than your average comic book tale. Many say this story began the re birth of Star wars in this genre. Things have evolved a great deal since the early days of marvel comics. And the fans have grown up along with the stories. Luckily Dark Horse comics continue to give us great adventures. But few come close to this classic tale. Set very much in the tradition of the Star Wars movies to date.
Title: The Dark Empire Collection: I, II, III