If there’s one character who’s image, story and presence defines the Star Wars story then it’s Darth Vader, and the fearsome Dark Lord of the Sith occupies the front cover of the fifth issue of the Official Star Wars Fact File. Let’s take a deep breath and dive in.

One of many aspects of the Official Star Wars Fact File that I enjoy greatly is the publications ability to weave together the existing trilogies and the stories and characters of The Clone Wars into what I believe it should always be – one continuous, eloquent and epic tale that spans star systems, decades and families to bring us the story of a galaxy. The fifth issue of the Official Star Wars Fact File continues that great work by taking in-depth looks into key characters, worlds and stories from the Original, Prequel and The Clone Wars eras.

As ever we break down the publication into six sections. In Battles and Events we take a deeper look into the devastating Rebel defeat at the Battle of Hoth, charting the Empire’s discovery of the Rebel base on the ice planet, through their assault and victory. We also look at the heroes of the Rebellion, including the late Chris Malcolm as Zev Senesca and our very own John Morton as Dak Ralter. And there’s some striking artwork at the foot of page 8 as an AT-AT nears the carnage of Echo Base. In Droids and Machines we take a look at a classic The Clone Wars villain, R3-S6, AKA Goldie from Duel of the Droids.

Humans and Aliens look at Leia Organa and her career as a senator and the close relationship she had working with her father and mentor Bail Organa. The section also takes a look at the final defiant actions of her father Anakin as he turns against the dark side to save his son Luke from the wrath of the Emperor. Planets and Locations looks at the beautiful and baroque world of Naboo, home to Queens, Sith Lords and Gungan Generals, while Weapons and Technology peers into the fearsome arsenal of the Duros bounty hunter Cad Bane. The issue wraps up with Vehicles and Starships and a closer look at the iconic Jawa Sandcrawler, detailing it’s workings and giving us a schematic of this rusty moving fortress

The fourth episode of our RADIO 1138 podcast featured Official Star Wars Fact File writer Iain Lowson, so click here and have a listen.

For our review of past and future issues click here.