We have no need of paper! Looking at Webcomics

Today I went to check my daily webcomics, and when I got to Penny Arcade, I was once again, floored by today’s strip. Look at the light emanating from Swayze. The skills shown in these three simple panels are numerous. When I put on my critical hat, and think about the sequential mastery they’ve achieved, I put Holkins and Krahulik right up there with some of the best guys doing comics anywhere today.

And because we often get asked what webcomics we like, I thought I’d see if we can start a little conversation.

It’s been suggested that we do a show on webcomics, but honestly, I don’t think any of us know enough about the subject to be any sort of authority. And you can sample comics here and there, but the real test of a good strip is if you keep coming back day after day, year after year. For me, that’s been three strips.

As I said, my favorite strip is easily Penny Arcade. It is ostensibly a gaming strip, but as seen with the above strip, it goes lots of other places. This is one of my other all time favorite strips. But obviously, it’s a whole lot bigger phenomenon than this site, so they don’t need my recommendation. It’s just very good.

Other than that, I only read PvP and Ctrl-Alt-Del, and I read the latter mostly out of habit. It’s odd, because I’m not much of a gamer, but I still read gaming strips. I’m not sure what that’s about.

So are there any strips out there that get you excited? Why? How long have you been reading?


  1. Umm….

    No need at all?

    Haha, Penny Arcade is awesome. It’s a real rite of passage to take a day and read through the whole archive of strips. I guess I’ve been reading it steadily for…I don’t even know…4 years? Gabe’s awesome with the photoshop layers and effects. It’s really quite impressive.

  2. Dinosaur Comics is my favourite; http://www.qwantz.com

    It is a daily comic, where the panels remain the same with each strip with only the dialogue changing. It’s funny! I’ve been reading it for a couple of years now.

    The only other two i read regularly are
    Dr McNinja: http://www.drmcninja.com
    and the perry bible fellowship: pbfcomics.com

    I occasionally read Penny Arcade, Ctrl-Alt-Del, a softer world, and white ninja comics.

    Whispered Apologies was a good one, readers sent in their own art, there were no limitations on what format it was in, and then some web comic writers added their own dialogue to them. It stopped being updated at some point last year though.

  3. I’ve been reading Shortpacked, by David Willis, for about two years now. It is toy themed in the same way that Penny Arcade is video game themed. It can go all over the place too. I am not much of a toy collector but Shortpacked regularly makes me laugh. Often making Batman: The Animated Series jokes.

    A couple of months ago I started reading Evil Inc., by Brad Guigar, about a corporation run my supervillains. I met Guigar at the New York Con and picked up the first printed collection of the comic.

    Most recently I started reading Girls With Slingshots, by Danielle Corsetto, after meeting Danielle at the Pittsburgh Con. It is a twenty something relationshipy comic. I took a morning at work when there was nothing to do and caught up on the entire strip. I am liking it.

  4. Penny Arcade is the only one that I can think of that I read with any regularity. Side note, the PA collection coming out tomorrow from Dark Horse contains the strips that were appearing when I started reading regularly.

  5. Here’s a list of all the webcomics I read regularly

    Penny-Arcade, Ctrl-Alt-Del, PvP (Pretty much the staple in webcomics)

    QuestionableContent.net Really fun character driven storylines, the original strips art is terrible but the author has really grown since starting it. I’ve been reading it since about September of 03.

    Sinfest.net Rather interest mix of social commentary but kind of hard to explain.

    WhiteNinjaComics.com Hilariously absurd most days. Other days just plain dumb.

    Shortpacked.com A vague storyline about toy collecting, working in a toy store and geek culture in general. Some great stuff about Batman too.

    XKCD.com Read this. It updates three times a week. If you are an intellectual at any level, its hilariously awesome.

    Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal smbc-comics.com It is kind of like the Far Side but much, much more twisted. And far less farm animals.

  6. Well, the only one I read that has yet to be mentioned is Cyanide & Happiness. It can be found a Explosm.net.

    Link to Archive.

  7. It’s a testament to Penny Arcade that I neither play a lot of games nor read webcomics regularly, yet I never forget to check for their newest strip. I think this may be my favorite comic strip ever “printed,” online or off.

  8. Ohhhh, web comics! Geez, this is what really got me back into comics back in 2002, a mate of mine showed me MacHall.com awesome comics (Now based at http://www.threepanelsoul.com/), and I got hooked

    My all-time favourite comics would have to be:

    Ctrl+Alt+Del (the animated series is pretty good too)

    AppleGeeks (http://www.applegeeks.com/) stunning art, The artist Mohammad F. Haque “Hawk” has an amazing style and his colours are drop dead gorgeous

    MegaTokyo (http://www.megatokyo.com/) quite a fun comics, takes a while to catch up too as theres quite a few pages, but worth it, a neat relationship/ gaming comics set in for the most part TOKYO

    VG Cats (http://www.vgcats.com/) The ability of Scott Ramsoomair to make fun of things in the games we have all loved at one time or another is one of the best parts, full of quotable remarks from the flurry of crazy characters

    Elsie Hooper (http://www.elsiehooper.com/) The black and white serial comic by Bob Krzykowski, this is a crazy good horror comic, it’s hard to say too much without spoiling it, so go read it and be shocked, the art style seems basic, but it’s so so effective, awesome comic

    A Modest Destiny (http://www.squidi.net/comic/index.php) Such a good funny story in what looks like an old school pixel video game, the way Sean Howard portrays these sprites really pushes the style to the edge and he produces some stunning work, a MUST read

    Many many more, but that’ll do me thinks 🙂

  9. If you’re a fan of Gabe/Krahulik’s art, check out Stephen Silver’s stuff. Krahulik has mentioned several times before that Silver is the biggest influence on his art style; it’s pretty evident, too, though I think Krahulik has distinctly defined his own style as time has gone on. Silver’s a staple at a lot of the cons, and a very cool guy to boot.


    Anyhoo, PA, PVP, and PBF are the ones I check regularly.

  10. Something Positive is the only webcoming I read regularly. I like SinFest and I like Penny Arcade, but S*P is my absolute favorite and I read as often as it comes out.

  11. http://nightmare.goldengoatstudios.com/

    Nightmare world was a decent series

  12. White Ninja and Ctrl-Alt-Dlt are old favs.

    The Perry Bible Fellowship is so damn funny, alienlovespredator is hit and miss at times. But when it hits, it hits hard.

  13. I really like Megatokyo…I’ve been reading it for years now and have really enjoyed watching fred’s (the artist)talents grow and develop. It’s not really a traditional strip, but it’s fun (if you dig that sort of thing)

  14. There are some really good web comics out there and unfortunately a lot of really bad ones. Here are the ones I like.

    PVP – Of course. This is how to do a strip and do it well.
    Wapsi Square – Great art and an interesting story to boot. Funny with fantasy bent. http://www.wapsisquare.com/
    Butternutsquash – I love this strip and it is sooo beautiful. I just wish it was updated more. http://www.butternutsquash.net/
    Girls with Slingshots – mentioned above but worth mentioning again. Great stuff.
    You’ll have that – Another nice humor strip that belongs in your local paper. http://www.vipercomics.com/webComics/yht/
    Sequential Art – not the most original name but its discriptive. Funny and nice to look at. http://www.collectedcurios.com/sequentialart.html
    Sinfest – A little preachy at times but wonderful http://www.sinfest.net/
    The Norm – One of the best. Thenorm.com is a member site (I highly recomend joning) but you can read lots of free ones on gocomics.com
    Phables – just started reading this but I love it. http://www.phables.com/
    Atland – another great fantasy strip. http://www.realmofatland.com/
    Girl Genius – The Foglios at it again now with an online strip. Genius is right http://www.girlgeniusonline.com/
    Cow and Buffalo – come on its funny. A cow and buffalo superhero team. I’m in. http://cowshell.com/cowandbuffalo/
    Copper – Just the best damn well drawn strip. Wow. And if you like it check out the Flight comic collections as well. http://www.boltcity.com/copper/


  15. Aside from the aforementioned webcomics some good ones that haven’t been mentioned are:

    vgcats.com – similar to PA in the fact that each strip is standalone and parodies things in geek culture only this time using cats

    threepanelsoul.com – a relatively new webcomic with the a beautiful art style (and guess what, it sticks to three panels)

  16. I’ll second Megatokyo–really engaging story and great art. I’ve been reading it since almost the beginning (so, like, 5 years?).

    Another one I’d highly recommend is Alpha Shade (www.alpha-shade.com). Really (really, really) beautiful art, and a seriously cool and interesting scifi-ish changeling story. I wish those guys could pump it out faster, but oh well (makes it easier to keep up with…). Ran across this one about a year ago–great stuff!

    Both of these are continuous stories instead of the traditional strip-type comics, and they’re really good examples of well done web comics.

  17. I’ve never really dove too much into the world of webcomics, but being an avid gamer, I’ve occasionally read Penny Arcade, which has its moments of hilarity. Other than that, I haven’t read much, but I’ll check out some of the things people have been suggesting.

  18. I used to be really into Sluggy Freelance but then a got pretty busy and stopped reading it about a year ago. You should go back and read the archives. It starts like a rocky gag a day strip and then evolves into some really awesome storylines with some great characters.