Tag Archives: alexander freed

Marvel’s Star Wars Legends Begins in April 2015

Marvel is excited to announce the release of an oversized dose of a galaxy far, far, away – Star Wars comics are coming to Marvel’s prestigious Epic Collection format – Star Wars Legends Epic Collection: The Empire Vol. 1 TPB.

Let the dark times begin! Marvel welcomes Star Wars to the Epic Collection program, with this first volume of a series focusing on the years that follow Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith! After the end of the Clone Wars, the Republic has fallen and Palpatine exerts his ruthless grip on his new Galactic Empire. Now, the few Jedi that remain must decide whether to hold true to their faith, or abandon it completely in the face of a brutal purge — one carried out by the new Dark Lord of the Sith. Rise, Darth Vader!

Star Wars Legends Epic Collection: The Empire Vol. 1 TPB will offer a new way for fans to collect and read iconic Star Wars stories across the past 35 years of published titles. These oversized, self-contained color collections will bring the adventures of the Rebellion, the Galactic Empire and more to the masses with exciting new Epic Collections.

COLLECTING: STAR WARS: REPUBLIC 78-80, STAR WARS: PURGE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — SECONDS TO DIE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — THE HIDDEN BLADE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — THE TYRANT’S FIST 1-2, STAR WARS: DARTH VADER AND THE LOST COMMAND 1-5, STAR WARS: DARK TIMES 1-5

AUTHOR: JOHN OSTRANDER, RANDY STRADLEY, HADEN BLACKMAN, ALEXANDER FREED

ARTIST: LUKE ROSS , DOUGLAS WHEATLEY, JIM HALL, CHRIS SCALF, MARCO CASTIELLO, ANDREA CHELLA, RICK LEONARDI

Star_Wars_Legends_Epic_Collection_The_Empire_Vol_1_Cover

NYCC 2012 – Gaider Delivers New Dragon Age Series for Dark Horse

Dark Horse announced the third installment of the wildly popular Dragon Age series! David Gaider—the lead writer of the Dragon Age games—takes three of the games’ most beloved characters on a quest into the realm of nightmares, demons, and magic.

King Alistair, allied with the world’s most feared warrior race—the Qunari—the pirate Isabela, and the rogue Varric, brings a battle royal to the evil mage responsible for his father’s disappearance!

With scripts by Alexander Freed and art by Chad Hardin, Dragon Age: Until We Sleep is an essential addition to the Dragon Age canon.

Heart-stopping action in jaw-dropping settings—Until We Sleep is everything you love about fantasy! Whether you’re a longtime Dragon Age fan or a newcomer, this is the beginning of an epic drama you cannot miss!

Dragon Age: Until We Sleep is on sale March 27, 2013!

Review – Dragon Age: The Silent Grove

The plot of Dragon Age: The Silent Grove follows Alistair, an erstwhile mage-hunter (who you may have slept with if you played Dragon Age: Origins), Varric, a beardless dwarf rogue and raconteur, and Isabella, a pirate captain whose main distinction is that she will sleep with anyone (including you, if you played Dragon Age 2) on their quest to find someone whom everyone else thought was dead. Obstacles in their path include an elite group of assassins known as the Antivan Crows, a powerful sorceress and, of course, a really big dragon.

I was a little worried when I heard that David Gaider would doing the writing for this book. Gaider, the head writer for Bioware‘s Dragon Age video games, does a great job writing games, but his novel, The Stolen Throne was just god awful. Fortunately he is only credited with the story and script writer Alexander Freed  does a fine job of giving the artist the proper cues and capturing the voices of the various characters, so much so that I could almost hear voice actors reading the dialog. Each of the six chapters, which are digital exclusives you can download for 99 cents through the Dark Horse app, feel like fifteen minute episodes of a well made web series, and provide a satisfying experience while making you want to read more. There are revelations and surprises galore and the story feels essential to the Dragon Age canon, a nice change of pace in an age of superfluous tie-ins.

Chad Hardin‘s art feels a little bit rushed at the beginning of the story, but by the end  it really becomes quite good. Even at his roughest, Hardin never fails to capture the Dragon Age aesthetic. The main characters are all on model, and the locations feel like places you might explore in-game. The Antivans (Dragon Age‘s analog for Renaissance Italians) are not a group we’ve seen much of before but their design  fits so well that you have to wonder what the people at Bioware are planning for their next installment.

For all it’s good points, The Silent Grove does have some flaws. The first issue is weak in both art and story, so much so that if it weren’t for the introduction of a single major character I would recommend skipping it and starting with issue 2. Major plot threads are also left unresolved at the end of issue 6. You’re left with the impression that you’ve just read a prelude to something else,  be it the next game in the franchise or another comic book series.

While Dark Horse‘s first effort does feel more like Dragon Age than Orson Scott Card‘s failed IDW title (which the folks at Bioware seem as eager to forget  as I am),  some of the more distinctive elements of the setting are still missing.  There is no discussion of any of the hot button issues that made the original game feel so unique. Race, class, religion, gender and sexuality are all pretty  much ignored. Only two female characters appear and both could have walked right out of the pages of a Robert E. Howard story. It’s not as though Dark Horse is pandering to the morons  that make up the lowest common denominator of the Bioware fan base, but Silent Grove is a very safe book that seems calculated not to offend them. The book really feels like a game of Dungeons and Dragons, that was heavily inspired by the Dragon Age setting. If that’s what you’re after, and you don’t already have a connection to this particular game world, than you’re better off investing in IDW’s superior Dungeons and Dragons series.

Another problem is the way in which the book is laid out. This is a digital exclusive and presumably was designed to be read on an ipad or a comparable tablet, so why are there two page spreads that will only look really good when the book is printed for trade? Mostly it was just annoying but at one point in issue 6, I read the balloons in the wrong order because of the way the panels were laid out. Dark Horse provides reviewers promotional copies in PDF that Dark Horse so I didn’t  have the benefit of a guided view, but I seldom choose to use that feature when it’s available. My preference is to read page by page with my device oriented horizontally to imitate a physical book and it feels a little like I’m being penalized for this. If Dark Horse is serious about these digital exclusives they need to make more of an effort to think about the different ways in which readers like to experience digital entertainment.

In the end what you think of Dragon Age: The Silent Spring will largely depend on whether or not you enjoyed  Dragon Age: Origins and/or Dragon Age 2. For fans of the games it’s a fun book  that raise some intriguing questions to keep the wheels turning during what promises to be a long development cycle of Dragon Age 3 so this is a definite buy. If you didn’t like Dragon Age, than nothing here is going to change your mind.  Those who have never ventured into this universe at all may find themselves adrift  since The Silent Grove largely relies upon a reader’s previous connections to the character’s and the setting, and provides only the barest glimpse of what made the games so much fun. If you’re one of these people I’d recommend buying the first two issues to see how much you like the series, or waiting for one of Dark Horse Digital’s bundle sales.

Writers: David Gaider and Alexander Freed; Art: Chad Hardin

Story: 8   Art: 8   Overall: 8

A free copy of this product was provided to Graphic Policy for review.

BioWare and Dark Horse Unveil New Dragon Age Comic Miniseries!

BIOWARE AND DARK HORSE COMICS EXPAND AND UNVEIL NEW DRAGON AGE™ COMIC MINISERIES 

MAY 1, MILWAUKIE, OR—BioWare, a label of Electronic Arts Inc., and Dark Horse Comics today announced Dragon Age™: Those Who Speak, a three-issue comic miniseries based on the award-winning Dragon Age™ fiction.

Written by David Gaider, lead writer of the Dragon Age series, and Alexander Freed, senior writer for Star Wars™: The Old Republic™, Those Who Speak expands on the story of King Alistair, as he travels to an empire of evil mages to uncover the fate of his lost father. Accompanied by the pirate captain Isabela and the underworld merchant Varric, King Alistair will stop at nothing to learn the truth, even if it means battling an army of cultists single-handedly. The first issue of Dragon Age: Those Who Speak will be available on comic book stands on August 22.

Additionally, Dragon Age: The Silent Grove will be available in a hardcover edition on July 25. Previously available only in the Dark Horse Digital store, Dragon Age: The Silent Grove is the perfect companion to the Dragon Age universe.

To learn more about Dragon Age: Those Who Speak and Dragon Age: The Silent Grove, visit DarkHorse.com. To learn more about Dragon Age, visit DragonAge.com.

Dark Horse Comics Signing Schedule and More!

Official Press Release

DARK HORSE ANNOUNCES SAN DIEGO COMIC-CON 2011 SCHEDULE!

SIGNINGS, PANELS, AND GREEN SCREENS, OH MY!

July 13, MILWAUKIE, OR—It’s here! San Diego Comic-Con 2011 is upon us, and Dark Horse Comics is telling you all the goods ahead of time! Plan accordingly!

SIGNINGS

Wednesday, July 20

7:30 p.m.—Preview Night Reveal

 

Thursday, July 21

11 a.m.— Fábio Moon and Gabriel Bá

11 a.m.—Tara McPherson (The Art of Tara McPherson)

12:30 p.m.—Eric Powell (The Goon)

2 p.m.—Bruce Campbell (My Name Is Bruce) *Ticketed by Lottery

3 p.m.—Morgan Spurlock (Supersized)

3:30 p.m.—Jerry Robinson (Jet Scott)

4:30 p.m.—Jill Thompson (Beasts of Burden)

 

Friday, July 22

10 a.m.—Stan Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo)

10 a.m.—Rebecca Guay (The Last Dragon)

11 a.m.—Menton3 and Patric Reynolds (The Thing)

11:30 a.m.—Dark Horse Presents Signing: Jim Steranko (Red Tide) and Neal Adams (Blood) *Ticketed by Lottery

12 p.m.—Stephan Martiniere and Michael Heisler (Rage)

1 p.m.—Gerard Way (The Umbrella Academy) *Ticketed by Lottery

3:30 p.m.—Star Wars Signing: Mick Harrison (Dark Times); John Jackson Miller and Michael Heisler (Knight Errant); Scott Allie (Jedi: The Dark Side); Rob Chestney (The Old Republic: Threat of Peace); Alexander Freed (The Old Republic: The Lost Suns); Jeremy Barlow (The Clone Wars)

5 p.m.—Falling Skies Signing: Noah Wyle, Moon Bloodgood, Will Patton, Drew Roy, Colin Cunningham, Sarah Carter, Mark Verheiden *Ticketed by Lottery

 

Saturday, July 23

10 a.m.—Mac Walters and John Jackson Miller, Michael Heisler (Mass Effect)

11 a.m.—Mike Mignola (Hellboy)

11 a.m.—Stan Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo)

12 p.m.—Whedonverse Signing: Zack Whedon, Andrew Chambliss, Georges Jeanty, Jo Chen *Ticketed by Lottery

12 p.m.—Adam Warren (Empowered)

1 p.m.—Jon Schnepp, Eric Powell, Jeremy Barlow (Dethklok) *Ticketed by Lottery

1 p.m.—Robert E. Howard Signing: Stuart Moore, Paul Sammon, Tomás Giorello

2 p.m.—Conan the Barbarian Signing: Rose McGowan *Ticketed by Lottery

2 p.m.—Dark Horse Presents (Carla Speed McNeil, Sanford Greene, Ricardo Delgado)

3:30 p.m.—Tsuneo Goda (Domo) *Ticketed by Lottery

3:30 p.m.—Mink (Shinjuku)

5 p.m.—Joss Whedon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) *Ticketed by Lottery

 

Sunday, July 24

10:30 a.m.—Rob Hughes and Thomas Yeates (The Outlaw Prince)

11 a.m.—Rob Reger and Buzz Parker (Emily the Strange)

12 p.m.—Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dante DiMartino (Avatar: The Last Airbender) *Ticketed by Lottery

12 p.m.—Ethan and Malachai Nicolle (Axe Cop)

1 p.m.—Larry Marder – Beanworld

2:30 p.m.—Doug Sneyd – The Art of Doug Sneyd

3 p.m.—Mike Mignola (Hellboy)

PANELS

Thursday, July 21

12 p.m.–1 p.m. Dark Horse: Fall Publishing Highlights! Room 32AB

Super-secret surprise guests!

5:30 p.m.–6:30 p.m. Creepy and Eerie: Comics That Can Still Scare You! Room 24ABC

Including: Jason Shawn Alexander (Abe Sapien), J. C. Vaughn (Doctor Solar), and Nathan Fox (Haunt)

Special Guests: Ken Kelly (Creepy/Eerie) and Bruce Jones (Checkmate)

Moderated by Dan Braun (Creepy) and Josh Braun (A History of Violence)

Friday, July 22

11 a.m.–12 p.m. Mike Mignola: Worlds at War Room 4

Special Guests: Mike Mignola (Hellboy), Tyler Crook (B.P.R.D.), and Scott Allie (editor)

1 p.m.–2 p.m. Dark Horse Comics: 20 Years of Star Wars Room 7AB

Including: Randy Stradley (editor), Mick Harrison (Dark Times—first public appearance!), Dave Marshall (editor), Scott Allie and Stéphane Roux (Jedi: The Dark Side), John Jackson Miller (Knight Errant), Dave Filoni and the Fillbach brothers (The Clone Wars), Leland Y. Chee (Keeper of the Holocron’s Blog), Timothy Zahn (Choices of One), Shelly Shapiro (Del Rey editor), and more!

2 p.m.–3 p.m. Dark Horse Presents: The Panel Room 25ABC

Including: Mike Richardson (Dark Horse president), Eric Powell (The Goon), Carla Speed McNeil (Finder), Sanford Greene (Deadpool), and many more!

Saturday, July 23

3 p.m.–4 p.m. Dark Horse: Joss Whedon Room: Indigo

4 p.m.–5 p.m. Dark Horse and BioWare: A Comic and Video-Game Partnership

Room 23ABC

Including: Alexander Freed (Star Wars: The Old Republic), Mac Walters (Mass Effect 3), John Jackson Miller (Mass Effect), and Dave Marshall (editor)

GREEN SCREEN

 

Thursday, July 21

9 a.m.–11 a.m.: Hellboy

11 a.m.–2 p.m.: The Goon

2 p.m.–4 p.m.: Mass Effect

4 p.m.–7 p.m.: Buffy the Vampire Slayer / Angel & Faith

Friday, July 22

9 a.m.–12 p.m.: Star Wars

12 p.m.–3 p.m.: Falling Skies

3 p.m.–7 p.m.:  Mass Effect

 

Saturday, July 23

9 a.m.–11 a.m.: Hellboy

11 a.m.–2 p.m.: Dylan Dog

2 p.m.–5 p.m.: Conan

5 p.m.–7 p.m.: Buffy / Angel & Faith

 

Sunday, July 24

9 a.m.–11 a.m.: The Goon

11 a.m.–1 p.m.: Star Wars

1 p.m.–3 p.m.: Buffy the Vampire Slayer / Angel & Faith

3 p.m.–5 p.m.: Hellboy