Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Review - Mirror's Edge: Exordium #1 (@DarkHorseComics)

"Sometimes I wonder what it would be like. To live a normal life."

Mirror's Edge was a fantastic game that graced consoles way back in 2008. It offered a great style of gameplay that had players bounding from rooftop to rooftop, all the while undertaking high-risk missions. It's been way too long since that game was released and EA is going back to a good thing with Mirror's Edge Catalyst. And prior to the game's release, EA is teaming with Dark Horse Comics for Mirror's Edge: Exordium #1. The issue is written by Christofer Emgard, illustrated by Mattias Haggstrom and Robert Sammelin and colored by Dan Jackson.

The Runners are a breed apart. Daring and independent, they have mastered the unforgiving rooftops, and they freelance as corporate spies and off Grid couriers. Theirs is a glittering urban landscape of burnished steel and glass facades where a single misstep can prove fatal. They call it the Mirror's Edge. Leading up to the events of the highly anticipated new Mirror’s Edge game comes an exhilarating comic prequel that delves into the story of Faith, one of the most celebrated heroines in video games! Dare to enter the fast-paced, high-stakes world of life on the mirror’s edge.

If you've ever played Mirror's Edge, then you know what the deal is. Emgard spends much of the first issue of the miniseries giving readers a glimpse into that world, presenting Faith and all the other players she's interacting with. There are a lot of characters and allegiances to take in, but Emgard does a good job of slowly revealing each new character/group so that the reader isn't overwhelmed. One of the major mysteries surrounds Faith's mother and that appears to be something Emgard wants to investigate further in Mirror's Edge: Exordium #1. Relaying that story to the reader is dialogue that's fairly robotic in some regards, in that it's very deliberate in achieving its mission of filling in the reader accordingly.

Haggstrom and Sammelin illustrate the book in a way that is extremely clean. Faith maintains her trademark appearance and is easily recognizable to fans familiar with the property. Considering the book focuses primarily on parkour, the duo actually do a good job of rendering that action in a way that feels frenetic. And while many of the pages rely on pretty standard grid layouts, there are some panels that are more angular in appearance, drawing the reader's eyes alongside the action of a chase or race. Jackson's color choice is largely reliant on shades of blue, which allows the characters to pop better in their more vibrant colored outfits.

Mirror's Edge: Exordium #1 is a great first issue that fits well within the Mirror's Edge mythos, offering a story that will be pretty familiar to fans of the game. There's a frenetic sense of action that effectively accompanies the parkour scenes peppered throughout the issue. Emgard knows what works in the franchise, writing the issue in a way that flows very well. Haggstrom and Sammelio do a great job with the illustrations, rendering Faith and her cohorts with a near future sensibility to them. Mirror's Edge: Exordium #1 is a great stopgap before the upcoming Mirror's Edge Catalyst.

Mirror's Edge: Exordium #1 is available now.


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