IDW Launches Digital-First Series at 8 Pages for 99 Cents

I hate to keep harping on digital price points, but as I watch companies experiment online, it’s one of the factors that jumps out at me.

Transformers Autocracy IDW promo image

Customers complain that more than 99 cents an issue is too much to pay for a virtual read they don’t own. Companies prefer $1.99 or even cover price ($2.99 or $3.99), although many run regular online sales, where a selected group of titles is lowered to the 99-cent price point temporarily.

Now, IDW has announced new digital comics featuring one of their most popular brands. They’re calling Transformers: Autocracy “digital-only”, but I suspect “digital-first” is more accurate, because I can’t imagine that they won’t republish it in print after completion. It’s a 12-part series that puts out a chapter every two weeks — but while they’re keeping to the “99 cents” price, they’re doing that by making the chapters only eight pages each. Which should make a 96-page collection, eventually. (DC did something similar with their Fringe digital comics; theirs were 99 cents for 12-page chapters.)

The writers are Flint Dille, who worked on the Transformers cartoon, and Chris Metzen, making his writing debut. His main job is Blizzard Entertainment’s Senior Vice-President of Story and Franchise Development — so he should know brand management, if that’s what you’re looking for in your comic reading. Artist is Livio Ramondelli. The series is available through IDW’s various digital partners.

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