Before I get into my review of 8-Bit Theater, I’d like to put out a formal thank you to one Mr. Jim Zubkavich, who you may recognize as the author of Skullkickers, which I reviewed last week. He posted a comment on my review, and seeing that someone whose work I quite admire (again see my review on Skullkickers, it’s a great series) read and commented on my post made my day. So thanks very much!
As for 8-Bit Theater and why I’m reviewing it this week, rather than the new Dungeons & Dragons comic? Well, it’s simple: the genius behind the fantastic, now completed web-comic is Brian Clevinger, who will be one of the featured writers in the upcoming (read: February) Skullkickers #6. I may have mentioned this in last week’s review but if I didn’t, now you know.
8-Bit Theater is an RPG nerd’s wet dream. Basically, it’s a comedic web-comic based heavily on the first Final Fantasy game and traditional table-top RPGs. It uses a rather brilliantly executed sprite style that both has enough detail to support the story as well as bringing back memories of the good old days of 8-bit gaming. Plus, Black Mage knows how do to a Hadouken, so you know right off that it has to be a good series.
The comedy, though primary geared towards RPG fans who will get the references, is fairly accessible to all readers. A lot of the gags are situational, so you can figure out things from the context. But this really is a nerd’s comic. Hey, no complaints from me. I read the whole thing (1225 comics, plus specials and guest comics, so God only knows how many it really adds up to). It’s worth the time, and it’s also fairly addicting (I told a couple of friends about it, one of whom read it and then, because he was bored, read it again, and one of whom happens to be emptynight. I don’t know if he ever finished it. Shame on him.). It won’t feel like it took as long to read as it will.
Yes. it is a very long comic. Yes, you will probably hurt yourself laughing. But should that stop you? NO. It’s worth every painfully hilarious second. From villains who were powerful in-game but now would rather serve cookies, to secretly evil damsels in distress, to the main protagonists who can’t stop fighting among themselves long enough to create and abide by a solid plan, I find it impossible to ever stop laughing. And all that aside, the plot is pretty good too (ok it’s based on the original FFI plot, so of course it’s good).
So if you have nothing to do, or if you have something you’d rather not be doing, go HERE and start reading. Just don’t blame me if you never get anything else done.