Revealed at last year’s New York Comic-Con and scheduled to be released in November 2012, Star Wars: The Old Republic: Annihilation marks New York Times bestselling author (and Star Wars™: The Old Republic™ writer) Drew Karpyshyn’s second novel set in the Star Wars: The Old Republic MMO universe.
Drew’s previous novel, Star Wars: The Old Republic: Revan, focused on the eponymous character’s continuing storyline beyond the original Knights of the Old Republic video game and leading into Star Wars: The Old Republic.
Annihilation is set right after the events of Star Wars: The Old Republic. The Emperor is believed dead and the Sith Empire prepares a massive counter-attack against the Republic spearheaded by Darth Karrid, the former apprentice of Darth Malgus. The instrument of her vengeance is the Ascendent Spear, a devastating warship augmented with the dark side of the Force. Republic agent SIS Theron Shan, his Twi’lek smuggler compadre, Teff’ith, and Jedi Master Gnost-Dural are joined by Jedi Grand Master Satele Shan and Jace Malcom in a fast-paced, tension-fraught thriller.
We managed to catch up with Drew to ask him a few questions regarding Annihilation.
Drew, can you tell us what Star Wars: The Old Republic fans can look forward to in your new book?
Annihilation gives readers a closer look at several characters that will play important roles in future updates for Star Wars: The Old Republic. Satele Shan, head of the Jedi Order; Jace Malcom, the Supreme Commander of the Republic military and Darth Marr, senior ranking member on the Dark Council are all featured in the novel, along with Jedi Master Gnost-Dural and of course Theron Shan, Satele’s secret son.
Do you recommend that people finish their storylines in Star Wars: The Old Republic before picking up the book?
Annihilation is set after the events of the class stories in Star Wars: The Old Republic, so there are things that I reference and mention that may serve as spoilers to people who haven’t finished the storylines. The balance of power between the Empire and the Republic has changed quite a bit by the time the class storylines in SWTOR are done, and the galaxy is a very different place.
The main protagonist of your novel is Theron Shan, who was featured in the comic book series, Star Wars: The Old Republic: The Lost Suns. Can you give us a bit of background on him and his relation to the rest of the Star Wars: The Old Republic universe?
Theron is Satele Shan’s son, though she gave him up at birth to be raised by her Mentor, Ngani Zho. He’s also a descendant of Revan and Bastila Shan from Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic game. However, Theron isn’t attuned to the Force and he isn’t a Jedi – he’s actually one of the top field agents for Republic Strategic Information Services. This gives him a slightly different perspective on the galaxy and life in general.
Since the book takes place after Star Wars: The Old Republic, does this mean that it will provide a definitive ending to the game?
The great thing about The Old Republic universe is that there are so many great stories happening at the same time. The events of the novel comprise a stand-alone story, just as the class stories in the game. Like the class stories, Annihilation is an epic tale that has a major influence on the galactic struggle between the Empire and the Republic, but it focuses on Theron and the events surrounding his mission with the SIS and I’ve worked hard to make sure the book doesn’t over write or negate any of the choices players make with their own class stories..
Where did the idea for this novel come from?
As with all The Old Republic novels, Annihilation was a chance for us to dig a little deeper into things that aren’t given a major focus in the game. But we also wanted to explore the changes that take place because of the class stories and the actions of players within the game. Annihilation looks at how the Empire and Republic stand after the events of the game, and it sets up key characters and events that will be featured in future releases for Star Wars: The Old Republic.
November is still pretty far away…can you leave us with a little tease about the book?
I don’t want to give too much away, but I can say that Theron Shan is a great character to work with. He’s a bit of a departure from my Revan or Bane novels, which focus on powerful Force users, but Annihilation really shows how much of an impact a non-Jedi, non-Sith hero can have on the Star Wars™ galaxy.