Science Fiction

Star Wars: Dark Forces: Soldier for the Empire

Author: William C. Dietz

Illustrations By: Dean Williams

Distributed By: Dark Horse Comics

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


            Star Wars: Dark Forces: Soldier for the Empire is the first in a series of three graphic novels focusing on the adventures of Kyle Katarn.  I first met Kyle Katarn in the Playstation game Star Wars: Dark Forces. The game gave you bits and pieces about Katarn's life, but left you wanting to know more, so you can imagine how happy I was to discover that there was a series of graphic novels based on the characters in the game.

            Kyle Katarn is the son of a farmer/mechanic from a planet in the Outer Rim.  His family is not rich and the only way that Kyle will be assured an excellent education is to join the Imperial Academy.  Although he doesn't always agree with everything he has learned at the Academy, Kyle has become a loyal officer, willing to risk his life for the Empire.  Shortly after graduating, Katarn learns that his beloved father has been murdered. As Kyle journeys to his homeworld, he makes an amazing discovery - his father was not killed by Rebel agents as he had been told.  His father WAS a Rebel agent, killed by the Empire.  

            Bent on avenging his father's death, Katarn joins the Rebel Alliance.  His first mission, given to him by Mon Mothma herself, is a doozy - get hold of the plans to the Imperial battlestation being built in orbit around Despayre (the Death Star for all you non-Star Wars fanatics out there!)!  Can Kyle complete the mission, or will he sell out the Rebellion?  Mon Mothma can't be sure, so she sends an operative to keep an eye on him - and dispose of him if he reveals himself to be a traitor!

            Star Wars: Dark Forces: Soldier for the Empire is over 120 pages packed with action, adventure and intrigue!  Perfectly written by William Dietz, the story will definitely hold your attention.  Not only do you get more insight into one of your favorite Expanded Universe characters, you are treated to some guest appearances from the trilogy, such as Mon Mothma and Lando Calrissian.  I especially enjoyed the illustrations by Dean WIlliams, which can only adequately be described as works of art.  Soldier for the Empire is a treat for any Star Wars aficionado, whether you're a fan of the movies, books, or games!


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