PR: What Not to Do: Pricing Online Too High

Silent Devil put out a four-issue series called Dracula vs. King Arthur. The high concept, which does have appeal, is right there in the title. At their site, you can order the four issues for $1.50 each ($6 total) or buy a collected edition on sale for $10.

Dracula vs. King Arthur

That’s why I was surprised to see, in a press release about how the story has been put online, the claim that all the print editions are, well, out of print. Perhaps they should update their website?

That claim may be why they’re chopping the material up into 8 weekly chapters, available online from Eagle One Media at $1.99 each. So, $16 for what you used to sell for $6, and without the costs of paper? That seems a little greedy, chums. Here’s a telling PR quote:

“Our story is one of the most pirated indie comics ever made. This led us to believe there was a market for a web version of the book. Eagle One Media gives readers a chance to get the definitive version of the title in a legitimate format, with series artist Chris Moreno providing additional, never before seen cover artwork.”

So you *know* that there are copies for free online, and instead of giving people a reasonably priced legitimate source, you want to force them to jump through additional hoops by returning every week in order to buy new chapters? (Only one and two are available now.) Not to mention that the “definitive” version of the story, in my opinion, would be one collected edition, not chopped bits’n’pieces.

And while I’m criticizing, I also recommend designing covers that don’t look like mud at small resolutions. I can’t tell what I’m supposed to be seeing on that collected edition cover I’ve posted, although I think one of the swoops is a vampire cape.


4 Responses to “PR: What Not to Do: Pricing Online Too High”

  1. Digital Strips: The Webcomics Podcast Says:

    [...] you have to market it properly. At Comics Worth Reading, Johanna Draper Carlson takes a look at a clumsy attempt to repurpose a print comic as a webcomic–at a higher price [...]

  2. kingofsnake Says:

    It’s the sword in the stone with a piece of black cloth hanging off of it (if it’s supposed to be a cape it’s either a really tiny cape or a huge effin sword) and a crown over the hilt. In the background is a vampire bat in front of a night sky with green smoke

  3. Christian Beranek Says:

    You are a very critical person, Johanna but I do appreciate your honesty. You don’t pull any punches. This PR came out at the advent of digital comics being sold online and yes I agree the price is way too high for 8 installments. The single issues are currently available on Comixology for .99 cents each. Apologies for missing this article until now or I would have responded sooner. Lot has happened since then. We are working on a new cover for a new print edition down the road. Yes, copies are completely sold out and have been for quite some time. All the best, Christian

  4. Johanna Says:

    As you note, this is a three-year-old article, and a lot has happened in the digital realm since then. (I’ve also mellowed some. :) ) Glad to hear that the issues are still available and you’re working on bringing the book back to print.

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