While we anxiously await the release of the video game, Batman: Arkham City this fall, DC is keeping us tweaked out on the Batman high by releasing a six issue mini-series written by Paul Dini bridging the story between Arkham Asylum and AC. The series begins shipping this month and will be available in print and digitally on the same days for $2.99. But in addition to the six issues they’re also releasing eight page digital chapters that will alternate release dates with the paper floppies and will closely examine Batman’s enemies and their motives. These mini comics are only available digitally but you can grab ’em for the sweet deal of $0.99 in the digital store! Maybe a dollar is still too much to ask for a measly eight pages, but, realistically, what else can you get for a buck?

Here’s the scoop on the Batman: Arkham City mini series from DC’s The Source blog,

Written by Batman: The Animated Series writer Paul Dini (who also penned both Arkham games) and drawn by Batman: Arkham Asylum and Batman: Arkham City concept artist Carlos D’anda, BATMAN: ARKHAM CITY picks up one year after the original game, where former Arkham Warden turned newly elected Mayor of Gotham City Quincy Sharp has decided to close down the infamous institution. In its stead, he establishes “Arkham City,” the new maximum security “home” for all of Gotham City’s thugs, gangsters and insane criminal masterminds.  Set inside the heavily fortified walls of a sprawling district in the heart of Gotham City, inmates can roam free and do whatever they want as long as they don’t try to escape. To run this urban prison, Sharp has appointed Dr. Hugo Strange, a man who knows that Bruce Wayne is Batman.

The six issue mini series and the eight-page interludes will eventually all be collected in a Batman: Arkham City volume, but you’ll have to wait for that. If their smart they’ll have it compiled in time to release with the video game itself.

This is a smart use of the digital store. These eight page chapters are cheap and exlcusive to the digital format. DC Comics co-publisher and Bat-legend, Jim Lee said,

The digital first stories offer a unique incentive for fans to experience interesting and exciting stories beyond the pages in the printed comic.The additional pages will serve as interludes within the regular issues and won’t be necessary to follow the main story of the miniseries.

I really love the idea of the digital store but I haven’t been wowed by their execution yet. I would like to be able to physically own the digital files, especially if I’m paying the same as print price. But I understand that would only escalate piracy. Damn, dirty pirates ruining it for the rest of us, I say as if I’m completely innocent of the crime. With their current cloud storage system it would be nice to see the price knocked down a bit for these digital comics. Which is why the $0.99 digital chapters are fantastic marketing and deals.

I’ve read this first chapter, focusing on Dr. Hugo Strange and it’s great, short for sure, but great. Very creepy setup for a major villain of the upcoming game and a really nice twist from the chaos and insanity of the Joker. Of course, I’m sure the Joker will get his own chapter, how could he not? Buy and read the first eight page interlude, available today, in the the digital store from Comixology.

Category: Comics

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