I have been a huge fan of Dark Horse Comics since way back in the early Nineties when I discovered issue 1 of Frank Millerís Robocop versus The Terminator and found myself instantly hooked. My love of that comic convinced me to play the Megadrive (Genesis) title of the same name and it turned out to be one of my favourite games. The reverse is true in this case as I have played the recent video game (Xbox 360 Review here) and it has led me to this graphic novel.
This book manages to take what I feel is the strongest element in the game, the story which links Episodes III and IV, and repackage it in a clever yet subtle way. The story is a retrospective of the events which occur in the game and is narrated by two of its supporting characters, the holodroid PROXY and the sexy pilot Juno Eclipse. The method of retelling the events through the eyes of witnesses who were close to the main character is an interesting decision and, while it would have been a bonus if secrets were revealed during this process, the approach is quite refreshing.
The style is nice and clean and will make you want to pick it up again just to flick through and admire some of the more impressive artwork. I mentioned that the story in The Force Unleashed fills the gap between episodes III and IV and I must say, if you choose to ignore the retelling of the story and instead focus purely on the art, this graphic novel works well as a visual stepping stone between the wonderful concept art and the final game.
As a method of storytelling this book is obviously far more accessible than the video game since it does not require the use of expensive equipment before you can experience it. Having said that, I do believe that youíll get more out of this book if you have already played through the game as it is nice to take a moment, while in a less stressful environment, and refresh your memory. Reading this was a very different experience to playing the game because at no point did I turn a page and suddenly feel the urge to break something out of sheer frustration and for this reason alone it gets my approval.
I highly recommend this graphic novel to those who enjoyed the game and to anyone who is interested in experiencing the video game narrative but for whatever reason wonít have a chance to play it. On top of this, in the unlikely case that you are a Star Wars fan but donít have any interest in the video game, as I mention above, this book is an effective and accessible way of filling in some of the blanks between episodes III and IV. 8/10http://www.teamteabag.com/2008/10/01/star-wars-the-force-unleashed-graphic-novel-review/#more-2863