Halo: Escalation Vol 1

Following the events of Halo 4, Captain Thomas Lasky and Spartan Commander Sarah Palmer lead the UNSC Infinity into a battle against enemies without and within! The story of the Halo® universe continues in this thrilling collection of Halo: Escalation #1–#6

Alright, I’m a little out of touch with the Halo Universe, but I’ve got a good enough understanding to piece together what’s going on in this volume.  The UNSC are attempting negotiations between the Covenant Sangeihli and the Brute Jiralhanae in order to stop all of the infighting.  Unfortunately, things don’t go quite as planned as a conspiracy makes itself known.  Having barely survived the events of Ealen IV Commander Sarah Palmer is more determined than ever to put an end to the conflict that just doesn’t want to die.  Days later Captain Tom Lasky sets out on a mission to uncover the mole within their ranks, but ends up finding out more than he wanted to.

This volume, at least, is a Master Chief free storyline that shows us that there are more than just the one Spartan fighting off the Covenant.  As far as I know O.D.S.T. and Reach have branched out away from Master Chief’s story, but in the end, it’s always really been about him.  This time around the mythos are expanded upon more with these new Spartan strike-teams.  Even more of note is that two female Spartans are the frontrunners of this volume, Commander Sarah Palmer and Spartan Naiya Ray.  Both are fierce, strong-willed fighters, ready to perform just as Master Chief had.  It’s a nice change of pace as female fighters weren’t highlighted too much, if at all, throughout at least the first three Halo games.  It’s always great to see more bad-ass women in comics.  The two story-arcs in this volume, written by Chris Schlerf, have started the spark to a greater conflict down the line as well as to possible tie-ins to the upcoming Halo 5.  Couple that with some nice-looking artwork by Sergio Arino and Ricardo Sanchez and you’ve got yourself quite the read on your hands.

Volume 1 of Halo: Escalation is just the beginning of the ongoing struggles of Commander Palmer and Spartan Ray.  If you’re looking to keep the story going after Halo 4 then this is definitely the book for you.  Even if you haven’t gotten that far, it does help to at least have played the first Halo game in order to get a better understanding of what’s going on.  In either case, this a great read well worth the money, so go pick yours up today.  For more info, on where to find this book, visit the Dark Horse website, or the Dark Horse Facebook page.

Geek-o-Rama received a copy of this comic for the purpose of this review. All thoughts, comments and opinions are those of the individual reviewer.

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