One of the most innovative series of Star Wars comics published by Dark Horse was the Tales of the Jedi series. Taking place thousands of years before the Rebellion's struggle against the evil Empire, another generation of Jedi Knights took part in a struggle against evil. Writers Tom Veitch and Kevin J. Anderson's saga spans over one thousand years and introduces characters such as Ulic Qel-Droma, Nomi Sunrider, Exar Kun, Naga Sadow and Gav and Jori Daragon to the Expanded Universe, whose effects on the galaxy would be felt many generations later.
Beginning in 1993, Tales of the Jedi focuses on Ulic Qel-Droma and Nomi Sunrider, two young novices training to become Jedi warriors. Their training, however, turns into a trial by fire when they prematurely have to face off against reigning crimelord Great Bogga, a Hutt who has killed one of the universe's most powerful Jedi Knights. Ulic's story was originally previewed in black-and-white in the Dark Horse Insider, while Nomi's tale was first seen in the pages of the Dark Horse Comics anthology title. The artwork for this series was by Chris Gossett, Mike Barreiro, Janine Johnston, and David Roach, with covers by Dave Dorman.
In 1994, Veitch and artists Tony Atkins and Denis Rodier presented The Freedon Nadd Uprising, where Ulic and Nomi battle the dark side power of Freedon Nadd to save the planet Onderon from being swallowed by evil! Dave Dorman once again provides the cover paintings.
Later that same year, Veitch was joined by Kevin J. Anderson for Dark Lords of the Sith, which introduced Exar Kun, a foolish and arrogant young Jedi that awakes an ancient, deadly power. This seductive evil will lead him down a path that will make him a Dark Lord of the Sith, and his darkling power will make the very galaxies tremble. Meanwhile, Ulic and Nomi start a romance, only to see it shatter when Ulic decides to defeat the dark side from within its own ranks. Artists for this series include Gossett, Barreiro, Jordi Ensign, and Art Wetherell, with covers by Hugh Fleming.
1995 saw the publication of The Sith War, with Anderson taking over as writer. The Mandalorians join the war, as Exar Kun (armed with the first double-bladed lightsaber) begins using his followers as assassins against the Jedi order, and one of his most powerful followers is Ulic! The war culminates into a final showdown on Yavin IV, a setting that readers of Anderson's novels will most likely recognize. Dario Carrasco Jr., Mark G. Heike, Bill Black, and David Jacob Beckett handled the art chorse. Hugh Fleming continued as cover artist.
Anderson took readers backwards another thousand years in the 1996's The Golden Age of the Sith, when lightsabers required external power packs, and the Hyperspace lanes were still being mapped out. When explorers Gav and Jori Daragon find their way into Sith space, trapped between two factions of the Sith, each vying for control of the galaxy. Bill Black and Stan Woch join the art team, with Christopher Moeller, Russell Walks providing the cover artwork.
In 1997, the usual team continued the series with The Fall of the Sith Empire, as Naga Sadow threatening to destroy the Republic. Only Jori Daragon can save the galaxy, but the Sith have a secret victory that will return to haunt the Old Republic...Duncan Fegredo provides the cover artwork.
Finally, Anderson wraps up the series in 1998 with Redemption, featuring a powerless Ulic Qel-Droma who has isolated himself in a distant corner of the galaxy. But he is tracked down by Vima, the daughter of Nomi Sunrider, who seeks a teacher and Ulic sees in her a chance at redemption. Unfortunately, Vima's disappearance draws attention, and the search party sent to look for her includes a vicious Jedi seeking revenge upon Ulic for killing her mate. Original artist Chris Gossett returns and is joined by Andrew Pepoy, while Igor Kordey provides the cover illustrations.
All of the collected editions are shown below, with new paintings by Dorman, Fleming, Fegredo, Mathieu Lauffray, and Alexander McDaniel. Also shown are the issues that previewed the series, a special ashcan edition of Dark Lords of the Sith from Topps, and the UK collected volumes which featured different artwork than the US versions.