With Knights of the Old Republic returning to comics with War starting tomorrow, Dark Horse had writer John Jackson Miller take questions via Twitter today. We sum it up so you don’t have to try to read answers before the questions on Miller’s twitter (catch it all on #KOTORWarChat). War was intentionally made as a good starting point into the era, so while there’s Easter egg type connections to the previous fifty-issue run of the KOTOR comics, reading the earlier works is not necessary to understanding the story. And it’s Sith-free!
Are you a new reader to the Knights of the Old Republic era? Miller’s got a short primer on what’s going on in War. If you’re familiar with the other KOTOR material, this five-issue comic takes place several weeks after the events of the last story arc, and six years before the first Knights of the Old Republic video game (and several hundred years before The Old Republic MMO).
Key reasons to read: Zayne’s a different kind of Jedi – he’s not great with the Force, but makes up for it with cleverness and optimism. And there’s humor. Miller is a fan of the classic trilogy humor, especially the bickering among the heroes, even during firefights. And did I mention: no Sith! The war is between the Republic and the Mandalorians, and so it’s not exactly good vs evil, although I’m sure the Senate sees it that way.
Regarding appearances by video game and comic characters: Though probably unseen, Revan’s presence will be felt (at this point, he’s still a Jedi recruiting other Jedi to fight against the Mandalorians), and Zayne is assigned to the frigate that once belonged to Saul Karath, and is now commanded by Karath’s former junior officer, Dallan Morvis (who regularly has clashed with Zayne). Jarael is in the picture, though we may not see her at first.
Behind the scenes: Miller started working on KOTOR comics back in 2005 (KOTOR #1 came out in January 2006, while KOTOR #50 came out in February 2010), and says that the seeds for War were laid as early as 2007, when developing the KOTOR Campaign Guide for the role-playing game. When asked about his inspirational sources, he pointed out that he frequently draws from real world history and politics, and frequently blogs about them ( for example, the destruction of Serroco in Issue #15 and the Knight Errant novel). War will dive into the relationship between the Jedi Order and the Republic, and as Zayne is no longer part of the Order, he may keep onto the Jedi tenets more freely than those stuck in the hierarchy and politics.
As a format for author Q&A, I’m gonna pick Facebook over Twitter. While Facebook (where Del Rey does author chats) is not exactly designed for it either, at least an answer doesn’t get broken into several lines because of the 140 character limit. I’m sure Dunc may have feelings otherwise.