on Oct 9, 2007
Before writing DMotR, my entire webcomic intake consisted of stopping at Penny Arcade twice a month to catch up. Once my comic got rolling people started sending me links, “Hey, did you see THIS comic?” My reading list grew from that, and at this point I have quite a few.
I thought I’d make a list of them to satisfy the curiosity you probably don’t have:
This is the only story-driven strip in my reading list. I love the art.
The story is fairly gripping, although it takes almost the entire first volume (which is in B&W) to set the stage. (Nothing wrong with that, this is a big story.) After that the comic is both exciting and in color. It’s steampunk (Gaslamp Fantasy is what they call it) and I’ve always had a soft spot for Steampunk. (Last month I very, very nearly picked up a softcover compilation of GG strips, but picked up Transmetropolitan instead. My love of steampunk is surpassed only by my love for cyberpunk.)
Copper updates about once a month. The art is gorgeous, generous, and painstakingly wrought. Makes me tired just reading about the process. It has a philosophical / whimsical, Calvin & Hobbes vibe that I love.
This strip seems to be approaching Penny Arcade in terms of sheer popularity and ubiquity. Remember my old post about how far your socks travel when you aren’t wearing them? That actually rose from this XKCD strip:
This was during the run of DMotR. For fun, I was going to fire back with the attitude as if I had some sort of monopoly on roleplaying comics and Randall Munroe was infringing on my turf. In “retailiation”, I was going to make one nominally about math.
I cooked up a comic with a stick figure guy next to a dryer, along with the bit about socks. I dropped the idea because I don’t know enough higher math to express the sock distance using Greek symbols and whatnot, which is what would have made it funny. (The math formula stuff would have gone within the image alongside stick man, and the caption would have been the bit about socks traveling further when not being worn.)
Anyway, I chucked the idea and turned it into a regular old post, which is still one of the most amusing threads we’ve had here.
We’re still in the first few strips, but David Morgan-Mar is already off to a great start. He’s made me laugh out loud twice already. I can’t wait to see where this goes.
As the authors have moved away from PC gaming (an inevitable process, I fear) I’ve found the jokes don’t connect with me nearly as often as they once did. I usually play three or four year old PC games, so I’m not privy to the latest games for all the various next-gen consoles and innumerable species of handhelds. Half the time I can’t tell if they are making fun of a real game or just making crap up.
Still, I keep at it because when I do find one that connects the payoff is huge. I’ve read this one about ten times now, and I can still laugh when I read it.
Rich Burlew seems to be suffering from some sort of non-specified health problems, and updates have been irregular lately. He was even obliged to cancel his GenCon appearances. Get well soon, Rich.
That’s it. There are other worthy comics out there, but these are the ones that have managed to grab hold of me and compel me to read on a regular basis.
You know what to do next: Give some love to your favorite comic in the comments below. (If you want to make a link, just put the url in the post. Don’t put it into an <a href=> tag or wordpress will strip it out. Stupid WordPress.)
Shamus Young is an old-school OpenGL programmer, author, and composer. He runs this site and if anything is broken you should probably blame him.