Greetings, all! Welcome to a brand new review/walkthrough/relive/nostalgia thread by the same annoying poster who brought you the NJO retrospective. This time, we'll be going back much, much further into the golden era of the Bantam EU, when Michael Stackpole, followed by Aaron Allston, gave us one of the first and what remains one of the best looks at the Star Wars universe apart from the circles of the Big Three. I wanted to re-live this series, having not read some of these books in a decade, and I figured, thanks to fresh copies being a generous gift on Christmas, there's not a much better time than now to get started. Cynically Reliving the X-Wing Series! (Apologies for the crappy webcam picture) Now, just as before, this initial post will cover some ground rules. Since this series is less, let's say, divisive than the NJO, I don't anticipate much in the way of threatening to derail or trolling. Still, I do want to have a civil and provoking discussion here instead of just baiting/flaming/trolling/etc, so let's all try to play nice. Also, once again, this thread is open to any and all spoilers, for this series or any other that might touch on it. These books have been around for a long time and most everyone's at least got the gist of them by now, but on the chance you haven't, if you don't want to be spoiled, no problem. Just don't read the thread until you've read the books for yourself. Unlike the NJO thread, I'll not be assigning scores or anything like that to these books. I will just be covering all of their points, anything that sticks out to me, any characters or scenes I enjoyed or disliked, and so on. I'll be trying my best to relive this series with an open mind, and it has been many years since I last read these books, so I'll probably be surprised at something along the way. Also, even though it's not in the above picture, I will be reading and covering Mercy Kill, the distant sequel to this series. That book is one I have not read before, and that review will be much more in line with my NJO reviews, with a recommendation stamp at the end and breakdown both of the book itself and how well it works within the series. I will not be covering the X-Wing comic series, at least not unless I get ahold of the entire comic run on the cheap. I'll be honest, I've never been a huge fan of most comics for a variety of reasons, number one being I'm a much larger fan of the written word; and having never read the comics before, I feel like they would be better suited to review by someone who is more familiar to them. If someone who does have the comics would like to review them for me, or somehow make it so I can review them, feel free to PM me. So the first review, Rogue Squadron, will be going out sometime next week, Monday most likely. In the meantime, though, I have a couple of resources for those who want to brush up on what we're getting in to. See, a lot of the mechanics of the series were inspired by both real-life dogfighting and air-to-ground tactics, but a lot was also borrowed from a video game out a couple of years before, Star Wars: X-Wing. Stackpole used that game as a basis not only for the mechanical operations of fighters in his books, but also pulled an entire mission for use as a training simulation. That video game inspiration would eventually come full-circle as the books and comic series would inspire now-defunct development house Factor 5 to develop a fighter-based game of their own for the N64, titled Star Wars: Rogue Squadron. The first resource I have is a video, courtesy of YouTube user Joseph Quinlisk, that covers the mission in X-Wing brought up in the opening chapter of the first book: The Redemption scenario, known in-game simply as Protect Medical Frigate, mission 4 of the first tour of duty. Second is a little something of my own. A couple of years back I tried to put together an informative video walkthrough of my own for Rogue Squadron on the N64, a game I grew up on and love to this day. It's still a fun game that's basically a much-simplified version of X-Wing with a new focus on air-to-ground combat. There are some audio issues in the early videos, but overall I'm still pretty proud of it, especially since I managed to get a gold medal on every level. This link should take you to the playlist. The first video, covering Ambush at Mos Eisley, is below. Note: my old YouTube name was Hawk3y389, and I refer to myself as such in the commentary. Old shame.