SWNN Review – Ultimate Star Wars

Ultimate Star Wars - Cover

There has certainly been no shortage of Star Wars encyclopedias in the past, but in light of the Disney acquisition of the property a few years ago and the subsequent reset of the canon, fans may be wondering what minutiae surrounding the various characters, places, technology, and events are now considered part of the official canon. Well, look no further – Ultimate Star Wars from DK has you covered on just about everything you’d ever want or need to know about Star Wars. Read on for the full review.


DK’s Ultimate Star Wars is an exhaustive look into the galaxy far far away that delves into a plethora of small details and factoids as well as the more general aspects of the universe that are sure to please both casual fans and hardcore Jedi-junkies alike. Co-written by a team of authors including Patricia Barr, Adam Bray, Daniel Wallace and Ryder Windham, Ultimate Star Wars accomplishes exactly what it sets out to do, living up to its name as the ultimate go-to reference book for the recently established Star Wars canon under Disney/LFL.


Ultimate SW - Characters and Creatures


Although this book is devoid of any material concerning The Force Awakens and light on Rebels content (due largely to its initial time of release preceding TFA and the current season of Rebels), the book serves as a fantastic companion piece to the Rebels and The Force Awakens visual guides, covering everything from The Phantom Menace to Return of the Jedi, including The Clone Wars series.


The book opens with a foreward by Star Wars veteran Anthony Daniels and is broken down into four main sections: Characters & Creatures, Locations, Technology, and Vehicles. Each section provides its content chronologically through the timeline and is concluded by a general timeline that relates to the content of that section.  Sprinkled intermittently throughout the book are overviews of key events that provide a brief synopsis and the circumstances surrounding the event.  These events are not limited to the films alone as they also include some important story events from the Clone Wars series, like when Ahsoka leaves the Jedi Order.


Ultimate SW - Training on Dagobah


There’s no way I could do an extensive review of the content provided in this book.  There’s just too much content to break down, but in the case of a Star Wars encyclopedia, that is a very good thing.  In short, I absolutely love this book.  The natural flow of content in chronological order really puts things in perspective – especially in cases where elements of the films and the TV series are blended together into a seamless presentation of continuity.  The chronology of the sections also makes it easy for veteran fans to find what they are looking for, but new fans have nothing to fear as the index at the back of the book makes it easy to find exactly what you want to read about.


Although this book first released almost a year ago, I intentionally waited to read it as many fans were pointing out various errors and inconsistencies in the book, which is quite typical for a book of this magnitude.  Well, it seems that my patience has paid off, as a lot of the glaring mistakes I had read about have been corrected in recent printings of the book.  I can’t attest fully to its perfection, but I haven’t noticed any issues in my own recently printed copy.


Ultimate SW - Luke


This book will take you as deep as you want to go.  If you just want to brush up on The Clone Wars without re-watching the entire series or if you want to dig deeper to discover canonical information about characters from the films that is never provided on screen, this companion to the Star Wars saga is right for you. From “Sheev”, the first name of Emperor Palpatine to Obi-Wan’s home planet of Stewjon, the details are ripe for the picking.  At 23.80 USD on Amazon, there’s never been a better time to get your hands on this one, and I strongly recommend that you do.


As always, stay tuned to Star Wars News Net, your Force for news surrounding the Star Wars universe, and may the Force be with you, always…



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Jordan Pate is Co-Lead Editor and Senior Writer for Star Wars News Net, of which he is also a member of the book and comic review team. He loves all things Star Wars, but when he's not spending time in the galaxy far far away, he might be found in our own galaxy hanging out in Gotham City or at 1407 Graymalkin Lane, Salem Center, NY.

Jordan Pate (Hard Case)

Jordan Pate is Co-Lead Editor and Senior Writer for Star Wars News Net, of which he is also a member of the book and comic review team. He loves all things Star Wars, but when he's not spending time in the galaxy far far away, he might be found in our own galaxy hanging out in Gotham City or at 1407 Graymalkin Lane, Salem Center, NY.

47 thoughts on “SWNN Review – Ultimate Star Wars

  • March 26, 2016 at 10:17 pm

    It is a combination of the Ultimate Guides of the Trilogies and the Vehicles book?

    • March 27, 2016 at 2:20 am

      Certainly sounds like it. Possibly just edited to remove stuff that no longer applies?

      • March 27, 2016 at 1:24 pm

        It was written as part of the Disney Canon, not before it.

        • March 28, 2016 at 8:04 pm

          Huh. But isn’t up to date with TFA, is that right?

          • March 28, 2016 at 9:09 pm

            It was released before TFA so it has no information on that film given all the secrecy surrounding it. It only mentions that Luke, Han, Leia and the Millennium Falcon are in Episode VII. There is one, perhaps two, behind the scenes photos but nothing you will not have already seen.

    • March 27, 2016 at 1:23 pm

      No. It’s an entirely different project and excellent. Loaded with detail. No schematics. I love it and I own all the other DK SW books.

  • March 27, 2016 at 2:19 am

    It probably speaks to the fact that I’m midway on my Anovos TK build that I can’t NOT see that the E-11 on the cover is either a rubber or resin cast, not a proper movie blaster. BOO!!!!!!!

  • March 27, 2016 at 6:06 am

    I figured you would have reviewed this a lot earlier? I guess last year was lot busier compared to this one. I’ll probably get it on clearance since it sounds like the old ones with a smidgen of new stuff and all the EU material taken out. More interested in Inside The Worlds Of Episode VII which I haven’t seen a release date for yet. The PT and OT one were great.

    • March 27, 2016 at 1:28 pm

      Star Wars The Complete Locations will be published later in 2016 in a new edition with a fresh layout. No info as yet if it will include any TFA content.

      • March 27, 2016 at 1:38 pm

        I hope it doesn’t and we get a separate book, but then again it will become obsolete when a Sequel Trilogy compilation is released after Episode IX…

        • March 27, 2016 at 4:09 pm

          Well, They released the PT ones after each film came out. If it’s Clone Wars/Rebels related then I’m down with that as they’ve had character/vehicle guides for those but never anything about the planets.

          • March 27, 2016 at 6:05 pm

            I’d love a series of in-depth Clone Wars books but doesn’t look like we will get any more.

          • March 28, 2016 at 1:26 am

            You are probably right. Rebels is not out of the realm of possibility though.

          • March 28, 2016 at 9:08 pm

            There may well be a Complete Star Wars Rebels guide in a few years; does make sense to let it wrap up first.

          • March 29, 2016 at 1:52 am

            The last TCW one they did was pretty amazing so I hope it’s like that with two pages for every episode or sol i’d even like to see a Droids/Ewoks/Tartatovsky Clone Wars one if there was any market for them.

          • March 29, 2016 at 1:56 am

            I’d love to see cutaway diagrams for all the vehicles and source material on more of the background characters. We need a definitive Clone Wars guide beyond recounting episode plots. What a fantastic tome that would be 🙂

          • March 29, 2016 at 9:54 am

            I liked the vehicle one they did for TCW but it was only ones up to season 3. I’d like to see more Essential Guides someday but those might be over considering that they plan on realeasing SW films till 2030 so they’d be out of date soon as they saw pri

      • March 27, 2016 at 4:07 pm

        Seriously? They pretty much covered everything in the past versions and it’s not like anything in it contradicted the current canon. Very little EU material aside from a few odd sentences.

        • March 27, 2016 at 6:06 pm

          I’m all for a redesign – the Times New Roman font looked cheap to me.

          • March 28, 2016 at 1:27 am

            You are right about that too. Hope there is a Rogue One one in the works too.

          • March 28, 2016 at 9:07 pm

            There is a 300-page Rogue One sourcebook to be published by DK … it may be due in October. I have no idea how they will fill 300 pages!

          • March 29, 2016 at 1:51 am

            That’s the first I heard of that and it’s got me too. Not even a TFA one could fill that many pages. Only guess is that it will also include Rebels stuff but it would still come up far short of tt number.

          • March 29, 2016 at 1:54 am

            Perhaps the page count is incorrect, unless it’s some exhaustive visual dictionary with hundreds of production photos – akin to a ‘Making Of’ guide. I’d love DK to handle those due to its superlative work in the past, for example the hefty Knights of the Old Republic encyclopedia.

          • March 29, 2016 at 9:51 am

            Perhaps, Maybe they are working on another MMORPG? Where did you hear about it?

          • March 29, 2016 at 2:10 pm

            Via the Star Wars Sourcebooks FB group. Am trying to remember the name of the German book site … Star Wars Bibliotek?

          • March 29, 2016 at 2:25 pm

            Is it an RPG book? That might make more sense though I don’t think many have been made under the new canon.

          • March 29, 2016 at 2:37 pm

            No. Only Fantasy Flight has the RPG licence. It’s a general reference book.

          • March 29, 2016 at 2:43 pm

            I’d like to se another reader’s companion book someday. One for the books, another for the comics, and maybe even the video games.

      • March 27, 2016 at 10:05 pm


        • March 27, 2016 at 11:51 pm

          It was a news item on that German Star Wars book site. Facebook’s SW Sourcebooks group reported it.

          • March 28, 2016 at 1:39 am

            Okay. I’ll look for it.

  • March 27, 2016 at 6:46 am

    I realize it’s pretty much about milking a dead Taun Taun at this point, but they did a good thing staying with DK. Solid company.

  • March 27, 2016 at 11:11 am

    I would only purchase this edition if I knew there wasn’t going to be a new version for many years (containing details from The Force Awakens).

  • March 27, 2016 at 11:13 am

    What printing is the latest?

    • March 27, 2016 at 10:01 pm

      This version is more comprehensive (since it has Clone Wars stuff) and is canon.

      • March 27, 2016 at 11:49 pm

        It’s not an update of the Visual Dictionary. It is an entirely different project.

  • March 27, 2016 at 6:22 pm

    Sheev completely chops Palpatine’s menace at the knees. I think it’s the SW galaxy equivalent of a dudebro / A+F / frat-guy name, like ‘Chad’ or ‘Chipper’…

    “Yo, Biff! Sheev and I are headed to rock on some reggae & and b****es with Chipper tonight…you down, bruh?”

  • March 29, 2016 at 4:02 am

    Picked this up a few months ago on Amazon UK for 9.99. It’s a hardback book that also has a nice hefty hard case slipcover. Not bad for 9.99.

Comments are closed.