World of Warcraft, Eh?

You know, there’s something wonderfully peaceful and familiar about writing these reviews. I’ve done so many… sometimes it’s nice to think inside the box. It’s comfy there.

And don’t forget that the comic contest is still on until Monday, details a few posts below.

World of Warcraft, Eh?

Kelly Aarons

2008-present

Updates AP (as produced), average about 1/week.

Ah, yes, the WoW comic. Such a staple of our time. It’s a gaming comic, a social-interaction comic, and a slice-of-(virtual)-life comic all rolled into one! Who wouldn’t enjoy it?

Well, I can’t really say. I liked it, yes, but I also play WoW, so I’m not an impartial judge. But I will try to play the outside role here.

<Hike pants, push glasses back on nose with determined look>

WowEh follows the adventures of Cadistra, the Tauren druid, and Kissless, a Blood-elf paladin, as they wander through the adventures of the Horde. For those of you who didn’t get that, “Druid cow and elf with shield and sword (not the tree-hugging variety) run through lots of deserts”. There’s a lot of WoW humor (duh) but it’s presented in a way that feels like it’s a normal joke comic, simply with WoW settings and characters instead of normal people. For example, the jokes in the first three comics are, respectively, <spoiler>running to the parking meter before it runs out, the environment is cold so global warming is crap, and American beer sucks.  </spoiler> Bear in mind, I’m not saying that this is a bad thing, the jokes may be a bit mundane but they are easily understood by anyone without severe brain damage, even if they don’t play WoW. Hell, depending on how severe the damage is…

One of the interesting things about WoWEh that struck me was the presence of a story. Normally, these WoW comics are simply done in a “hurr durr funny game mechanic”, which generally works. However, WoWEh took another path by making an actual, serious story. And no, not the abrupt miscarriage of a plot line that’s become a rather unfortunate viral bit, we’re talking an actual story here. Basically, they revolve around how the two main characters grew on each other, adventuring together, and so on. It’s actually rather well done, it tells the story well without dragging, and the characters are interesting enough to have actual personalities. In an age of sock puppets with faces, it’s nice to see characterization.

I’d make a comment about implied lesbianism, because I know that some of you are thinking it, but I’m not going to. Why? It’s Because I’d have to be a thirteen-year-old boy to give a shit about that. The internet is already saturated with twats that assume that two women can’t simply be comrades without having some kind of tryst going on as well.

Overall, it’s a clever comic that actually tries to have a story and <gasp> character development. I look forward to future updates.

Daily Quests

Daily Quests

Kelly Meeks (a) and Andrew Manser (w)

09-present

Updates Fridays

I have a soft spot for upstart comics. They’re like babies toddlers kids they have such promise! It’s like a puppy, is more appropriate. It’s full of energy, but nine times out of ten they grow up into a boring mutt. However, some of them stay fun until they kick it down the road.

Comics kind of have the same kind of pattern. They start off well, while the writer and artist are still chock-full of ideas and enthusiasm. Alas, they also mimic babies by usually being full of crap as well. It doesn’t take long for them to drop off completely (I hear that the hump is 30 comics) or just devolve into crap. If you can get past the hump and still be good, you typically can last a while.

Fortunately, Daily Quests fell into the latter category. Yes, dear readers, you lucky few, it’s another WoW comic. But what did you expect? I’m a gamer! For the Horde, motherfuckers. Level 80 ‘lock, I’ll DOT your asses, boosting my DPS to make you QQ all the way home with your Hearthstone. Boo-yah.

…fine, I’ll put my e-peen away. I admittedly haven’t played in a while, but if you’ve ever hung out in the upper levels of WoW then all of Daily Quests should be funny to you.

Note: I usually consider anything under 50 comics (filler is a bad sign) to be “new”, since that seems to be the “we’re in the clear for sure” zone.

First, I suppose I should explain the title to those of you who haven’t played “mmopeguhs” before. A “daily quest” is an assignment that every WoW player has to do every day in order to grind out cash or tokens that can be traded in for new gear. You usually do this whenever you’re not raid-aw who am I kidding? If you don’t know this crap already then Daily Quests will be an utter disconnect.

Ah, the meat and potatoes of the comic, right. DQ is the in the “In-game mechanics/interactions” category of gaming comics, taking place entirely inside WoW. Following the misadventures of Vas and Fireuni, the nut and the stable one respectively. It makes fun of noobs, makes fun of druid-trees, makes fun of raids, everything that you might have thought while playing WoW but never put down on paper. This gives the comic that familiar kind of humor, since you probably thought of the joke while chatting with your guild and just shrugged it off. Given the context of a comic, it’s funny, of course.

I believe I give the wrong impression. Yes, some of the jokes seem familiar, but many of them are fairly original. I really got a good laugh out of the BlizCon pet joke. And when I call the jokes “familiar”, I don’t mean it in a derogatory sense. The jokes are put into humorous writing and art, so it’s not like you’re going to fall over drooling with boredom. Plus, they are relatively few. Actually, on a note, I rather like the art. I don’t know why, it just rings with me.

At any rate, it’s a good comic that I may have been too nice to due to the new nature of it coupled with the constant WoW references, but feh it’s my site I can do what I wanna. I say again, if you don’t play WoW then there is a 99% chance that you will not get any of the jokes. But if you’re like me and know your imp from your Voidwalker, then I highly recommend Daily Quests. Let’s just hope that it stays good. Hope.

Ugh, another complementary review. I really need to get off the WoW comics, I’m too fanboyish.

Also: FOR THE HORDE! Buncha pansy little flower-pickin’ elves. Or wooo you could play a HUMAN! I’m glad I spent all this time leveling up myself! Or the little fruity gnomes… or the “stout” little dwarves…

In short, as a certain lady put so eloquently in this fairly circulated comic, “NO TIPS FOR ALLIANCE SCUM”!

B.N. If anyone’s on the Garrosh server, look up “Rayst”. I might even talk to you.

P.S.S: Since there’s a massive influx today: If you want a comic reviewed, then you can request it via comment, my Twitter account, or an email to archivecrawl@yahoo.com. Cheers!

Gunnerkrigg Court (Guest writer: Kitty)

Gunnerkrigg Court

By:Tom Siddell

Updates: M/W/F

Hello all! As promised today you have a guest reviewer, ME :D…this is not nearly as exciting as you were hoping it would be, eh? Well too bad, every so often when I get sick of hearing Cat whine about how much of a pain this blog is I will be writing a guest review to give him a break.

So Gunnerkrigg is one of those comics that has been one of my bookmarks forever and I haven’t the slightest idea where it came from, but it is quite excellent and I highly recommend it. The basic story is that of a girl named Antimony Carver who is a young girl sent to live at a boarding school called Gunnerkrigg Court. This comic is divided into 27 chapters and there are 720 pages total to date. The first couple of chapters are typical “OMG BOARDING SCHOOL” drivel but the art kept me intrigued and it should be noted that Antimony is not your average student, nor is Gunnerkrigg your average school, built as part of a mysterious industrial complex Gunnerkrigg Court is full of surprises from a very polite society of robots hiding in a closet to the ghost Antimony befriends. Antimony is joined on her adventures by a tech geek fellow student named Kat, as well as an intelligent stuffed wolf toy left for her by her mother. I know this doesn’t make a lot of sense but seriously, read it! It is full of alchemy and old world folktales, Antimony meets the Coyote of ancient Native American fame as well as many other familiar characters, and as I said, the first few chapters are meh but as the art and story evolve you find yourself really able to get into it and look forward to each blessedly on time update.

So that’s all folks, I will be popping up from time to time, until then best wishes ♥ Kitty

P.S.- You guys do know we can see what searches you come to this blog from, right? Soooo pretty much I am talking to you “Homestuck porn” guy, seriously, log off and rethink your life…

Gunnerkrigg Court

(Guest writer: Kitty)

Gunnerkrigg Court

By:Tom Siddell

Updates: M/W/F

Hello all! As promised today you have a guest reviewer, ME :D…this is not nearly as exciting as you were hoping it would be, eh? Well too bad, every so often when I get sick of hearing Cat whine about how much of a pain this blog is I will be writing a guest review to give him a break.

So Gunnerkrigg is one of those comics that has been one of my bookmarks forever and I haven’t the slightest idea where it came from, but it is quite excellent and I highly recommend it. The basic story is that of a girl named Antimony Carver who is a young girl sent to live at a boarding school called Gunnerkrigg Court. This comic is divided into 27 chapters and there are 720 pages total to date. The first couple of chapters are typical “OMG BOARDING SCHOOL” drivel but the art kept me intrigued and it should be noted that Antimony is not your average student, nor is Gunnerkrigg your average school, built as part of a mysterious industrial complex Gunnerkrigg Court is full of surprises from a very polite society of robots hiding in a closet to the ghost Antimony befriends. Antimony is joined on her adventures by a tech geek fellow student named Kat, as well as an intelligent stuffed wolf toy left for her by her mother. I know this doesn’t make a lot of sense but seriously, read it! It is full of alchemy and old world folktales, Antimony meets the Coyote of ancient Native American fame as well as many other familiar characters, and as I said, the first few chapters are meh but as the art and story evolve you find yourself really able to get into it and look forward to each blessedly on time update.

So that’s all folks, I will be popping up from time to time, until then best wishes ♥ Kitty

P.S.- You guys do know we can see what searches you come to this blog from, right? Soooo pretty much I am talking to you “Homestuck porn” guy, seriously, log off and rethink your life…

Curvy

Hello! Hello! So, yes, two things are this week. First, I have finals, which are death-in-a-can, so excuse me if I seem a bit TENSE or silly.

Secondly: It’s my birthday this Friday! For some reason people think that this makes me mature, so I plan to conclusively prove them wrong. That’s right, it’s Dirty Comic Week! I’ve reached back in between the stacks of horrible teen-on-zombie-nazi-horse pr0n and drew out some of the NSFW ones I stores away in my vast pit of webcomic bookmarks. Of course, I try to pretend to have some class (I am a gentleman after all), so none of these will be downright pr0n in my view, but it may be close. Those of you with delicate temperaments, click off. Otherwise, move on with my NSFW stamp in mind. Alas, I’ve already done Olgaf, but here’s to trying…

Curvy

Mary Magdalene (according to the copyright)

2008-2010

Updates semi-regularly

To start: Lesbian fantasy characters. Think if a lady from this world got pulled into Candyland by Princess Candy and they had frequent lesbian sex with everything they can find and you have Curvy. That’s the short version.

The long? It’s actually fairly well written and clever. It follows the whole “Princess escapes into foreign land to run away from forced marriage” formula, but does so in a good way. The worlds are broken up into different dimensions, basically, each with it’s own set of customs and rules. From candyland kings to seafaring pirates, they all have vastly different environments. The main characters travel all over the place, sexcaping danger at every turn. It’s decent, I must say.

The art style is fairly simplistic, although you can tell where the most effort is put in (if you catch my drift). I’ll leave it at that.

Yes, the plot is non-existent. But let’s face it, you won’t be reading it for the plot. And let’s face it, there’s a thousand and one hentai porn sites that would be more fulfilling than this. Not that you heard that from me. Always leave room for Jesus, kids.

Overall, it’s not a daily thing that you’ll look at again and again. Like I said, I buried it somewhere and had to dig it out myself (Bookmarked for review, not anything else, folks. I’ve been at this for a while). So make what you will of it.

MS Paint Adventures

A note from the author: Archive Crawl will now be updated on MWF, as I am big college students and actually have to bloody study for once. Cheers.

MS Paint Adventures

Andrew Hussie

2008-20010

Updates regularly

I have mixed feelings about MS Paint Adventures. Rather, I have different feelings concerning the two different stories available. Technically there are four stories, yes, but the first two consisted of dark tiiiimes and we do not speak of them. Because of this problem, I shall write two reviews.

Firsties, the universal stuff. The entire comic is built around the idea that it’s a video game. All of the “next” buttons are commands that anyone who has played Zork should be readily okay with. Readers can submit ideas for the next “move”, and the author decides whether to make it. The art style jumps frequently between complex and utterly simplistic, as (despite the name) most of it was done in Adobe Photoshop. Yes, you internet sellouts, it was shopped. In later pages animation becomes relatively common, and it’s actually done very well. However, this is done best in Homestuck. Why is that a problem? You’ll see…

Problem Sleuth:

The (technically) third and absolutely best story on MSPA. It follows the absolutely insane misadventures of Problem Sleuth as well as his two “partners” as they try to… I’m not entirely sure what they were doing. Seriously. Like, there were parts in the plot where the author hit the “pause” button because he knew that the entire thing was so fucking insane that he had to recap. And it was WONDERFUL.

I have never been more engrossed in a story before. It’s very odd, and the plot makes no sense whatsoever. Let’s just get that out of the way. But there’s such absurd satire that I sometimes had me laughing out of my chair (That’s right, a ROFLOL). The absurdity is just balls-to-the-walls crazy, but there is something of a plot there. Actually, there’s a lot of plot there, although you have to pay something of attention to get it. The general idea that it’s all one big game helps a bit in the beginning, but after a bit the comics become less about utter absurdness that blatantly rips on RPGs. It’s like if you took a RPG, threw in some pixie dust (not the fantasy kind, the narcotic kind), some noir detective novel. It’s nice.

Homestuck:
I tried.

I really did. I wanted to find something to replace Problem Sleuth. I thought “Hey, now he’s had so much more practice! This will be great”! I read and read and read. And what do I have to say?

Fucking sucked.

Problem Sleuth’s genius is that it took absurdity and managed to tie in into a delectable meal that is good with red wine or cocaine. I compare Homestuck to a McDonald’s cheeseburger. You eat it, you kind of enjoy it, and then after you don’t really know why you ate it. It’s not clever, it’s not funny, it’s just stupid. I must admit, I stopped reading a long time ago simply because I was so bloody bored. The only real redeeming feature about it is that the animated parts and (get this) soundtrack is pretty good. However, this is only found by digging through the proverbial chaff for the gem. Except that the chaff is the size of the Pentagon and the gem was once mistaken for a grain of rice.

Overall, read Problem Sleuth, skip Homestuck. It’s your only hope.

P.S. For you who love video games, Zero Punctuation. It’s a hilarious video game video series that I just heard about, although it seems like that’s like Rickrolling someone today… idk. It’s yours, anyways.

Oglaf

Oglaf

WARNING: NSFW CONTENT. Like seriously nsfw. Unless you work in the kind of environment where it’d be cool. If so, please email me at archivecrawl@yahoo.com, and I’ll send back my resume. Anyways, it’s a good comic, but it’s graphic enough to make a supreme court judge go “I know it when I see it, and I see it”. So put the kids to bed and draw the blinds so that the neighbors don’t talk.

Trudy Cooper

85 pages

Updates Semi-regularly

Oglaf is the kind of comic that anyone with a good, moral center avoids. Good thing I lack one, eh? As the intro states, it started off as an attempt to make comic porn, but then the creator realized that he liked the idea of making webcomics more than porn. Thus, Oglaf is born, following the apprentice to a “liberal” sorceress of a master. There are quite a few side stories, most of which are pretty funny. The whole thing takes place in medieval times, so knights, magic, and crossbows are quite common.

Like I said, most of the arcs are fairly-graphic sex jokes, but the side stories tend around the life and times in a medieval world where magic actually works. King Arthur, the Boy Who Cried Wolf, the whole lot all make appearances. It’s good times.

The art style is actually pretty good (yeah, I know. I’m commenting on how well he can draw cocks. It’s a valid observation). The characters are well drawn, esp clothed, and the scenery is fairly detailed.  You can tell that it was originally intended to be an art project. Ifyoukno-no, I’m not playing that game.

You really will know if you will enjoy the comic within a few minutes of starting it. If you can get past the “art style”, or (gods forbid) just act mature and get over it, then I think you really will enjoy it. And no, I didn’t get this link off a porn site. It was on Menage a 3. So there.

Annnnnyways, give Oglaf a meander when you get a chance by yourself. And leave your morals at the door.

Note: Cooper is also the author of the more popular/plot-driven/classy Platinum Grit. Thanks to Eddie Caplan for the info!

Looking For Group

LFG

Blind Ferret Entertainment

341 Pages

Updates: Regularly

You’ve played a MMO of some sort, most likely. Or at least you’ve seen one. Or read some kind of fantasy novel. Or seen a fantasy movie. Unless you’re one of *those* people, but we don’t talk about them.

Anyways, born out of a mixture of fantasy MMOs and books is the comic Looking For Group, a fantasy-themed story that follow the adventures of Cale the Hunter and Richard the Warlock. Cale plays the white hat, always looking out for the good in people, while Richard represents the darker, sociopathic side, aka the one everyone actually likes. The team gradually expands to include an orc shaman and a tauren warrior (I use WoW terms because I am fairly sure that it was the origin of the creature in this case) as well as some minor, static characters.

The story starts out with Richard and Cale simply going on little adventures together, picking up the friends, yadda yadda ya. This all serves as character exposition and gives information on the backdrop of the story, however, so it isn’t boring. It’s just not terribly relevant to the endgame content. (Couldn’t help it)

A bit into the story is when the fun really begins. The plot turns from simple shennanigans to an epic arc featuring all the races of the world being thrown into epic battle. I mean, seriously, who doesn’t love epic combat? Communists, that’s who. And its only because they “like” it instead of “love” it. This arc is the main reason for reading the comic, besides Richard, of course.

Actually, strike that. The comic is all well and good, with an above average plot line and all, but give me more of Richard. Frankly, that undead warlock is the only reason I bother reading the plot pieces in between the explosions. If it wasn’t for that surly, serial-killing zombie then I probably would have lost interest far ago. I’m not really the kind of guy who goes for the “valor in the face of adversity” or “stick up for your pals” kind of thing, which this comic has an unfortunate amount of. Yes, it’s broken up by interpersonal conflict, but let’s face it, in the end the moral of the story is that you can always count on your friends. Pfff. In fact, I hadn’t read the last chapter of the series until right before penning this review since I lost interest. Why? FRIENDSHIP! IT’S THE PLOT! Except that outside of crappy pre-teen sitcoms, that kind of theme doesn’t work out so well. At any rate, it’s much easier to read something else for a while then come back for the violence.

Like I said, there’s a reason that Richard is the mascot.

Art: 3/5

Pretty good, relatively well-drawn characters and the battle scenes are fairly epic-ly drawn.

Plot: 3/5

There is a large, epic plot that the entire story revolves around, which is pretty cool. However, the long periods between the battles tend to drag on and on, which detracts from the overall experience and does not keep you coming back. If it wasn’t for Richard, the comic would probably not be worth reading.

Characters: 3/5

The people in the story all play specific roles. You have the white hat, the crazy guy in black, the tough-on-the-outside woman, the honorable warrior, and so on. While these archetypes are filled in all stories, they usually aren’t so obviously done. But, once again, Richard bring the story back up to a point where you can justify reading it.

In short, this is for you if you enjoy reading fantasy novels and the like. However, the plot tends to drag, and without Richard there would be little to bring you back. Still, it may be worth checking out. If you’re bored.

No Rest for the Wicked

(Two in one day for opening day: Don’t get used to it.)

No Rest for the Wicked

Author: Andrea L. Peterson

2003-2009

Updated: May be over, but decent-sized archive. Leaves off in the middle of the story.

I must admit, I do have a soft spot for anything involving fairy tales. I don’t mean Disney’s nerf-padded bull, I mean the original Grimm’s Fairy Tales, the ones where bad children get eaten alive and if you aren’t pure then your father will chop off your hands. No Rest for the Wicked follows Princess November (Multiple tales, such as Princess and the Pea, etc), in her quest to find the moon. You see, ever since the moon disappeared she has been a utter insomniac, which any binge caffeine drinker knows is only fun for a little while. Characters include Puss (Puss in Boots), Red (Little Red Riding Hood), Beauty and the Beast, and so on. This isn’t your Little Nemo– watching, apple juice-drinking child’s fairy tale, though. Puss is all grown up and rather anthropomorphic, with adult sensibilities. Red has become almost completely sociopathic, as well as more than a little axe-crazy. The whole story is wonderfully dark, and quickly rose on my list of favorite plots.

The art is pretty good, although it mostly lacks color and is a bit sketchy. The style does not detract from the story, however, and I find myself enjoying certain clever pieces of artwork when they come along. It’s just one of those “know it when you see it” things. Although, Peterson does throw red in certain places, esp. with Red’s cloak (I wonder why) giving the art a bit of a noir feel, which I always thoroughly enjoy.

The plot moves quickly along without losing story, as well as squeezing quite a few fairy-tale characters in on the side. Along with the main story arc, it includes a few side ones about a prince who is hopelessly picky and the marriage of November to the Boy (the Boy Who Knew No Fear). It’s not exactly a fast-paced plot, but it’s not exactly LOST-worthy either. Plus, it’s the journey not the destination, eh?

The characters are fairly static but have enough personality that they do not become boring after only a few pages. Plus, with the plethora of supporting characters, it never gets old.

The only complaint that I have about No Rest for the Wicked is that it hasn’t updated in a very, very long time. Yes, I understand that some people simply can’t keep it up forever, but did she need to stop in the middle of a plot line?

Of course, some would say that being angry at an interrupted story is a sign of a good one. I still hold King’s Needful Things as one of my favorite stories because when one of the characters died I wanted to throw the book in a fire because of it. At any rate, read this comic.