Saturday, January 2, 2010

StarCraft: Ghost Academy vol. 1 Impression

StarCraft Ghost Academy manga volume 1
StarCraft Ghost Academy volume 1 from Tokyopop is the latest entry in the line of StarCraft manga and like the recently released World of Warcraft: Death Knight, Ghost Academy takes a deeper look into the world, training and life of a specific character class in the series. The art is excellent, a mesh of East and West and the format, while in manga size, does not read in the traditional manga direction. Why should fans of StarCraft and Sci-Fi manga in general care? Let’s take a look.

The Terran’s most powerful weapon against the Zerg, Protoss and even in-race traitors are the highly trained, deadly Ghosts. Identified at a young age these telepathic capable youths are trained to infiltrate, disrupt and destroy as needed but in order to become such a fine killing machine they first must go through the Ghost Academy. The academy serves two purposes; first to train newly ‘recruited’ candidates and second to serve as a PR face, a picture of normal school life to alleviate the public pressure for so many abducted kids. One such candidate is Nova, a level 10 psychic, the most powerful. She is part of a five man Ghost team created to offer greater support in the field and also avoid a Ghost going rogue. Nova must learn to work with a team as well as adapt socially, something her past has made difficult. With team lead Tosh, Kath, Aal and Lio, Nova must prepare to become the Dominions ultimate weapon that is if she can make it through the Ghost Academy and infighting it carries.

We’ve already touched on a few points about this manga and its format. The cover is beautifully crafted by Fernando Heinz Furukawa and it continues into the book. The emphasis is on the characters as the background art is present when needed but not too complicated if present at all. The most detailed background seems to be of the metal corridor and ship variety. Each character is unique looking, no cookie cutter here and the style is a mesh of traditional manga with a more comic book look. Overall the art is really a strong point of the manga which leaves the story to look at.

Keith R.A. Decandido has created a world that does indeed feel like an academy with student grudges, drug additions, high scores and studying but this is a bit of an issue. The book cover hints at a shadowy institution, which we see a bit of, but for the first volume in this series it’s more Harry Potter than a military training facility. Each character is provided an adequate background in the larger StarCraft world and there is a foundation for the shadowy conspiracy background mentioned but just not too much in this first volume. Overall the story is off to a decent start as the characters, players and settings are established but where the series goes from here is a coin toss. Will it be more schooling as the title implies or will there be field action for Nova and team? These questions are why fans should check out volume 1 and check in for volume 2, after all the art is good and the world of StarCraft is always worth exploring more.

1 comment:

  1. DOWNLOAD Starcraft - Ghost Academy v01 2010 case-DCP HERE: