Comixology, the digital comic book arm of the almighty Amazon, simply retains getting higher. Prior to now, I’ve reviewed its glorious, feature-rich Android and iOS cell apps, software program that brings the hybrid digital comedian e-book retailer and reader to smartphones and tablets. Happily, the corporate’s browser-based Comixology.com is simply as spectacular. It has a superb panel-to-panel Guided View mode, digital comics that launch on the identical day as print editions, high-definition comedian e-book information that render stunningly on HD shows, and a brand new Limitless studying plan that may prevent a number of dough. Merely put, Comixology.com is a near-perfect mixture of digital comedian e-book retailer and reader.
How Comixology Works
You start by making a devoted Comixology account or logging in together with your current Amazon credentials. Bought digital comics are tied to your account, so you may entry the books by way of your PC’s net browser or certainly one of Comixology’s Android or iOS cell apps.
The reader works cross-platform, too. After I stopped studying Rise of the Black Panther #1 on Comixology.com, the Android app requested if I needed to proceed the place I would left off within the browser after I opened the identical concern on my smartphone. Those that learn on a number of gadgets will actually respect this function, because it saves you from having to flip via books to search out your house.
You probably have various studying tastes, Comixology.com’s acquired your lined. It options titles from a big selection of main and indie publishers, together with Antarctic Press, Archie, Increase, Darkish Horse, DC, Dynamite, IDW, Picture, Lion Forge, Marvel, High Shelf, Valiant, and Weekly Shonen Soar.
The Comics Android and iOS Apps
Comixology can be obtainable on the Android and iOS platform, because the appropriately named Comics. Each variations allow you to browse the Comixology retailer, add objects to your wishlist, and browse books, however the procuring and checkout experiences are the largest variations between the Android and iOS apps. The Android model allows you to make purchases from throughout the app, whereas the iOS model calls for you make purchases via your cell browser.
From a enterprise standpoint, I can perceive why Comixology determined to go this route with the iOS app; giving Apple 30 % of every buy is lots of misplaced income. Nonetheless, as a frequent Comixology consumer, I discover that the dearth of an built-in retailer removes the browse-and-buy simplicity.
Comixology.com’s house display incorporates a slider that highlights sizzling new releases, digital gross sales, and company-related bulletins. Beneath which can be sections that showcase titles unique to the platform, in addition to themed gross sales (for instance, Comixology slashed the worth of Thor books to coincide with the premiere of the Thor: Ragnarok film). In a column on the precise facet of the interface are hyperlinks to free books, graphic novels, High 10 Bestsellers, and different areas of curiosity.
Comixology.com’s drop-down menus provide you with quite a few methods to browse books: By sequence, story arcs, rankings, writer, style, creators, and different standards. You may, in fact, additionally seek for titles or artists utilizing a built-in search perform. Books can be found for buy on the identical day that print points hit brick-and-mortar shops normally, so you do not have to fret about ready to learn Noble #1 since you determined to go digital.
Shopping for Digital Comics
Whenever you discover a e-book that pursuits you, click on a difficulty icon to see its synopsis, creator credit, pricing, ranking, and pattern pages you may strive earlier than shopping for. Constructing a digital comedian e-book assortment is so simple as clicking worth icons to position the comics into the procuring cart, after which clicking the Buy icon. You may as well add titles to a wishlist to purchase them at a later time. The potent mixture of accessibility and ease of use implies that comics-heads could have to indicate some restraint so as to not drain their wallets.
However, pricing could deter rampant spending. New digital comics are priced precisely the identical as their paper-and-ink counterparts, which from a client’s viewpoint is a tad ludicrous. For instance, Black Lightning: Chilly Useless Arms #1 is $three.99—the identical as its bodily counterpart. There are quite a few freebies and 99-cent points in Comixology.com’s catalog, however $2.99 to $three.99 pricing seems to be the norm (collections, naturally, value extra, however you get extra bang for the buck).
Sadly, many pre-1980s books are lacking in motion. The massive holes within the Spitfire and the Troubleshooters sequence, for instance, are disappointing. The rival Marvel Unlimited all-you-can-read subscription service has many books that have not but appeared in Comixology, in order that’s value trying out in case you’re in search of again points. That stated, Comixology is engaged on digitizing many old-school comics.
In reality, Comixology sells many books from the pre-superhero period, comparable to Tales from the Crypt, Two-Fisted Tales, and Bizarre Love. So in a means, Comixology has develop into an unimaginable comics archive, with titles spanning many eras.
Comixology Limitless (and Extra)
If shopping for particular person comics and collections is not precisely your bag, Comixology Limitless could show engaging. For $5.99 monthly, Comixology Limitless allows you to learn greater than 10,00zero comics from quite a lot of publishers, together with DC and Marvel. Comixology Limitless is an incredible worth to U.S. readers (it is set to roll out to different areas sooner or later), because the service allows you to discover new titles at zero monetary threat. Sadly, Comixology Limitless solely allows you to dive into choose titles, sometimes these which can be good jumping-in factors for brand new readers.
In fact, when you finish your subscription, you will lose entry to the comics that you simply did not buy. Comixology affords a 30-day free trial to Comixology Limitless, so you may strive earlier than you subscribe. Comixology.com additionally allows you to buy curated bundles, purchase present playing cards for others, and subscribe to sequence, one thing that you would be able to’t do on the cell facet.
The Comixology Studying Expertise
Comixology.com offers you many methods to learn your titles. You may scroll via a difficulty web page by web page, hearth up a double-page view, or use Comixology’s patented Guided View expertise. Activated by clicking the GV icon, Guided View simulates the movement of studying by guiding you from one panel to a different whenever you click on the on-screen navigation arrows (or faucet your keyboard’s left/proper arrow keys).
Wonderful Spider-Man: Who Am I? and a handful of different comics are constructed with Guided View in thoughts. These are just like movement comics, minus the annoying voice work and compelled panel motion. Batman ’66, a stable, campy throwback to the Adam West-era Caped Crusader, takes benefit of the Guided View expertise in a way that does not really feel gimmicky. It remembers old-school 3D films through which an explosion would often ship a chunk of shrapnel hurling towards the viewers. Wolverine: Japan’s Most Wished, nevertheless, makes use of the expertise so as to add dramatic weight by fading pictures out and in of darkness or panning towards objects simply off display. The expertise has potential to allow a brand new sort of storytelling. I am excited to see how creators use it.
The Match to Width (discovered within the Settings possibility) and Zoom modes additionally allow you to alter the digicam for a pleasurable viewing expertise. Comixology.com’s a number of viewing choices let me get pleasure from my comics no matter my monitor’s display dimension. That stated, Comixology.com often froze throughout testing if I started rifling via pages too rapidly. The freezing concern did not seem after I turned pages at a extra sedate clip.
Comixology’s Sensible Lists aren’t revolutionary, however they provide you helpful, at-a-glance details about your digital comics assortment. They allow you to rapidly monitor what you’ve got been studying with the In Progress and Unread lists, present what you’ve got purchased with the Just lately Bought checklist, and supply a brand new option to preserve your Want Record.
One other addition is the Advisable for You checklist, which supplies you customized suggestions based mostly on comedian books you’ve got bought. For instance, the Advisable for You checklist prompted me to take a look at points in a sequence that I had but to buy (Very good #three), in addition to books associated to others I already owned (EC Archives: Crime SuspenStories #2). The suggestions proved helpful, however I hoped to see extra sudden picks. I’ve fairly just a few Nailbiter points in my assortment; I might’ve liked to have seen Comixology.com recommend extra horror books.
Word: Comixolgy.com additionally has a pull checklist that you need to use to order bodily books at your brick-and-mortal comedian e-book store. The pull checklist is purposeful, however a bit clunky when it comes to design.
Comixology.com allows you to obtain comics to your PC’s desktop within the DRM-free CBZ and PDF codecs. This implies you may learn books bought from Comixology in digital comedian e-book apps comparable to Perfect Viewer and YACReader when you switch the information out of your PC to your cell machine. Word that you simply can not obtain DRM-free comics by way of Comixology’s cell apps.
Sadly, and never totally unexpectedly, DC and Marvel have not joined the DRM-free digital comics motion. Nonetheless, Motion Lab, Aspen, Blind Ferret, Caliber, Inventive Impulse, Satan’s Due, Dynamite, GT Labs, IDW, Picture, Kingstone, Monkeybrains, Oni, Fantagraphics, Th3d World, Thrillbent, High Cow, Valiant, and Zenescope have kicked DRM to the curb. For those who obtain the DRM-free comics, you may nonetheless leverage Comixology’s DRM to sync books throughout a number of gadgets—it is the perfect of each worlds. Regardless of Amazon proudly owning Comixology, you may’t lend comics to others as you may with Amazon’s Kindle books. I hope that modifications within the close to future.
Digital Comics Dominance
Comedian e-book followers who wish to purchase and browse their digital comics on a desktop or laptop computer slightly than on a smartphone or pill will love Comixology.com. There are again catalog gaps, however in case you want studying Preacher with out worrying about mylar luggage and backing boards, Editors’ Alternative Comixology.com is a wonderful option to learn digital comics on a pc.