Dark Horse releases more info on their digital comics program

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dhd Dark Horse releases more info on their digital comics program
When Dark Horse announced their digital comics initiative back at NYCC, they went about it in a different way from most other publishers. Instead of partnering with an existing storefront like comiXology, they decided to use their own webstore and application to sell comics — and at the $1.49 price point. There was also talk of add-ons that made going to the physical comics shop a part of the experience.

Since then details have been sketchy, but today Dark Horse released the first information on the program, via a mailing to retailers in the Diamond Daily. A bit of the information was also released to the press, including the plan to release ORIGINAL digital material — but only to those who purchase brick and mortar comics.

An essential component of Dark Horse’s e-publishing plan is to drive readers into the stores, not just to their iPads.   Not only will Dark Horse prominently feature links to local comic shops in our digital app, but we’ll also be offering digital content to retailers as a promotional tool for your shop.   Today, exclusively via the Diamond Daily, Dark Horse is pleased to tease the first concrete detail of that program:  we are aggressively investing in the creation of digital, original, 8 page stories that will tie directly to the on-going story lines of our biggest properties and most exciting launches.  This content will only be made available to consumers who visit bricks and mortar retailers.


Also, via the DH Blog, more information including a list of titles that will be available, below. In addition to individual titles, Dark Horse will be “bundling” complete runs for digital GNs — an option which many publishers have yet to adopt.
dhdigital sig Dark Horse releases more info on their digital comics program

Here are the basics: Launching in January 2011, download the Dark Horse Bookshelf app from the Apple app store for your iPhone or iPad or go to digital.darkhorse.com to read comics from your laptop or home computer. New titles and reprinted material will be appearing on a weekly basis, and in February expect to see select issues of your favorite comics appearing online the same time they’re released in stores! It’s that easy!

Here’s the full list of titles we’ll be launching with in January: 

Baltimore: The Plague Ships Issue #1 through #5
Bundle of all five issues

Beasts of Burden Issue #1 through #4
Bundle of all four issues

BPRD: Hollow Earth Issue #1 through #3 
Bundle of all three issues

BPRD: Plague of Frogs Issues #1 through #5
Bundle of all five issues

BPRD: The Dead Issue #1 through #5
Bundle of all five issues

BPRD: Dark Waters One-Shot

BPRD: Night Train One-Shot

BPRD: Soul of Venice One-Shot

BPRD: Something Under the Bed One-Shot

BPRD: Dark Waters, Night Train, Soul of Venice and Something Under the Bed Bundle of all four issues

Conan Issue #0: Free 
Conan Issues #1 through #15
Bundle of issues #0 through #3
Bundle of issues #4 through #7
Bundle of issues #8 through #11
Bundle of issues #12 through #15

Criminal Macabre Issue #1 through #5
Bundle of all five issues

Dr. Horrible One-Shot
Dr. Horrible TPB (includes 5 stories)

Empowered One-Shot Special
Empowered Volumes 1-3

Falling Skies installments #1 through #7

Fallout: New Vegas-All Roads Preview

Fray: Future Slayer (by Joss Whedon) Issue #1 through #8
Bundle of issues #1 through #4
Bundle of issues #5 through #8

The Goon/Hellboy crossover One-shot

The Goon Volume 6: Chinatown

Grendel: Behold the Devil Issue #1 through #8
Bundle of issues #0 through #4 
Bundle of issues #5 through #8

The Guild Issue #1 through #3
Bundle of all three issues

Hellboy: Almost Colossus Issues #1 and #2

Hellboy: Box Full of Evil Issues #1 and #2
Hellboy: Almost Colossus and Box Full of Evil Bundle of all four issues

Hellboy: Christmas Underground One-Shot

Hellboy: Corpse and Iron Shoes One-Shot

Hellboy: The Wolves of St. August One-Shot

Hellboy: Wolves, Corpse and Christmas Bundle of all three issues

Hellboy: Seed of Destruction Issue #1 through #4
Bundle of all four issues

Hellboy: Wake the Devil Issue #1 through #5
Bundle of all five issues 

Kull: The Shadow Kingdom Issue #1 through #6
Bundle of all six issues

Mass Effect: Redemption Issue #1 through #4
Bundle of all four issues

Serenity: Float Out one-shot

Serenity: Those Left Behind Issue #1 through #3
Bundle of all three issues

Serenity: Better Days Issues #1 through #3
Bundle of all three issues

Serenity: The Shepherd’s Tale TPB

Solomon Kane: Castle of the Devil Issue #1 through #5
Bundle of all five issues

Joss Whedon’s Sugarshock (one-shot)

Terminator: 1984 Issues #1 through #3
Bundle of all three issues

Terminator: 2029 Issues #1 through #3
Bundle of all three issues

Troublemaker Volume 1 TPB

Umbrella Academy: Apocalypse Suite Issue #1 through #6
Bundle of all six issues

Umbrella Academy: Dallas Issues #1 through #6
Bundle of all six issues:

Umbrella Academy: 14-page Free Comic Book Day story

Usagi Yojimbo: Yokai

Comments

  1. Awesome. It’s nice to see things like this, not just as a bookseller, but as a consumer desperately hoping that bookstores and comic shops don’t go the same way as music shops.

  2. “to those who purchase brick and mortar comics.”

    Seems to be a bit backwards thinking, actually. Comics on brick and mortar? Isn’t that what they used in the Flintstone’s days? I’ll stick with paper and ink.

  3. It sounds like Dark Horse has done their homework on this one. What they are doing makes a lot of sense.

  4. Joe Lawler says:

    It will be interesting to see how distribution of these 8 page stories will work out. Will there be a code in the comic to access it? And if so, what’s to stop that from just being passed around online?

  5. I know it’s not a popular view, but I don’t want to go into shops. I want to read comics on computers and I don’t want anyone trying to lure me back. I have too damn many comics as it is and they are bogging me down.

    And why would they silo themselves into their own site?

    Marvel doesn’t sell it’s books in its own stores. They are publishers. Not retailers. this is an old story. It won’t work well. It’s like when Marvel tried to do its own distribution. It’s a non-starter.

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