Writer: Ian Edington
Artists: Steve Pugh, Dan Jackson (colors)
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Either based on or the inspiration for a video game with the same name, take as you will, Hellgate: London is a nice comic effort. Based in an apocalyptic future (either limited to just London or spread out over the whole world, I am not sure), the story here is, at the core, a simple straightforward one.
Routed to near extinction, the humans (residents of London) are on the run from the "demons" that came forth from some hellish realm. Amongst them are a select few (various sects) who along with trying to stay alive are fighting for their land ní lives back from the invading monsters. The three main classes (which I take are set up in accordance with the game) are the Templars, the Cabalists and the Demon Hunters. The Templar is a sort of "Holy Warrior," the Cabalist a "(Dark?) Mage/Sorcerer/ Sorceresses" and the Demon Hunters, well, although similar to the Templars, the DHs are more into guns than swords (the Templarís weapon of choice).
Having not read the #0 issue, I took this as the opener and did not find myself lost or confused in any way or form. The setup for the mystery (or if you will, the "core target" of the game) is established here, with a player from each character class brought together/selected to play through the gameÖuh, series. Moreover, just to make things interesting, also introduced is the "shady" status of the Cabalists and the mistrust that the other characters have towards them. Seeing as they deal with some rather dark forces there is more than a little chance of a Cabalist jumping sides and becoming the very thing that they are fighting against.
The artwork by Steve Pugh (art) and Dan Jackson (colors) is a mature affair. A great effort ní experience overall. The one thing that struck me as odd was that in a few panels the characters seemed a bit disjointed (as against a fluid flow forth) from the backgrounds.
Conclusion: Even though (with the current PC configuration) I wonít be able to play the video game, as a comic Hellgate: London looks to be an interesting enough read, even if it isnít big on originality. Then again, it is a video game comic and as such holds itself up just fine.
You can find more reviews by Bruce Logan at www.xcave.net
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