Sweet 16 of Mix March Madness 2012 Webcomics Tournament–Vote Now!

Glenn Hauman

Glenn is VP of Production at ComicMix. He has written Star Trek and X-Men stories and worked for DC Comics, Simon & Schuster, Random House, arrogant/MGMS and Apple Comics. He's also what happens when a Young Turk of publishing gets old.

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87 Responses

  1. Wulfgar says:

    Gunnerkrig Court vs Penny Arcade. That’s rough. I like them both.
    But I want Gunnerkrig Court to get further. It grew on me. At first
    I didn’t think I could like it. But the story is quiet captivating, if
    given a chance, and the art style really develops over the chapters.

    But I think, the really tough choices will commence after this round.
    I’d hate to vote between Girl Genius and Goblins. The two of them
    must be the comics, I’m following for the longest time. Meanwhile
    they are grown to be part of my life. Choices, I hate them! ;D

    • Svafa says:

      Penny Arcade vs Gunnerkrigg Court was a difficult one. Gunnerkrigg got my vote for having a long running story over the one-off humour of Penny Arcade. OotS vs McNinja was difficult as well. Do I go with Chaotic Awesome or Lawful Epic?

      For Goblins to go up against Girl Genius, they’d have to reach the final round. Girl Genius I think has a good chance of making it to the finals. It’s got PA and QC, but I think Goblins has the worse of the two brackets with xkcd, OotS, and Erfworld.

  2. CP says:

    OOTS vs. Dr McNinja. How is it remotely possible to choose between these? They’re both almost perfect.

    I guess Dr. M updates more regularly? But on the other hand, OOTS does character development a lot more effectively. But Dr. M makes me laugh more often, and amazes me sometimes with the scope of its ridiculousness. But OOTS definitely has the more epic and exciting storyline, and you feel a lot more invested in it since there’s a lot less Deus Ex Machina (even if Dr. M does consistently hang a lantern on it in incredibly funny ways.)

    I just don’t know!

    • benzrf says:

      Hmm… Sounds like I need to read Dr. McNinja.


      Also, Homestuck is Neutral Epicer or something; if you have not read it then you SHOULD.

  3. Marshall says:

    Uh. It’s Homestuck. Not Homestruck. Fact-checking, guys?

  4. LadyBelle says:

    I had trouble between Goblins and Looking For Group. Richard is what finally swayed my vote. So much chaotic evil in such a lovable bundle.

  5. Zathyra says:

    The site seems to be off- and online a lot today. Lot´s of people worry that they can´t vote due to this.
    Are there bigger problems? Do you want to delay the votings maybe until the site is stable again?
    Just wanted to post that, in case nobody who actually makes this site hasn´t noticed yet.

    • Kuryree says:

      Part of it is because… Andrew Hussie, the creator of MSPA linked to it on his tumblr. The MSPA fandom has been known to crash Newgrounds when big updates are released. >_<

  6. Jac says:

    Finally got my votes in. There were some tough choices, and I don’t doubt that it’ll only get harder in the next two rounds. There are so many great comics left standing, but I still have a few favorites in~

    C’mon, RA! Keep on ‘a chugging!

  7. NinjaInWhite says:

    I like C&H, but I’m pretty sure Homestuck is going to win by a landslide due to the extremely large fanbase.

  8. DarkMyste says:

    in the immortal words of Kin: penis go boom…

    sorry lfg but thunt rules over yah

  9. Wesley says:

    If you plan to read Homestuck, I’d suggest getting right on that; Its already as long as War and Peace, and unlike the other long running strips that are mostly gag-a-day, its a serial story. (Or as serial as something with as many timey-wimey shenanigans as it CAN be) Not to mention, MSPA ALSO includes Problem Sleuth, and the previous, abandoned adventures of Jailbreak and Bard Quest.

    Then there’s the hours of music to listen to. Because it’s a webcomic that has its own music team. Less web/comic/ and more web-multi-media-force-of-nature-classic-literary-definition-of-an-epic.

  10. SharesLoot says:

    Just you wait and see, Goblins will end up first or second in this tournament :-)

    Although… beating Homestuck will be awfully tough.

    I’m happy to see that many of my favorites are still in the game. I’m sorry for Unsounded, The Meek and The Oatmeal, they should still be with us, but you can’t have your cake and eat it. In the end, only one will remain.

    • Matt says:

      Hey Shares! Yep, you’re right, “there can be only one.” :) Could you clarify for me what you meant by “have your cake and eat it”, though? By my understanding of that phrase, I can’t figure out how it applies. It’ll probably nag at me for a while if I can’t determine what you meant. :)

      • someone says:

        The original saying was “you can’t eat your cake and have it too.” With “have” in the sense of possession, in the same way that you have a book or a car or whatever.

        The saying got inverted at some point, possibly because “have” also has a meaning of eating (“here, have some cake”), so people got confused and thought it was the same thing twice. Which doesn’t make sense.

        The idea is that you cannot both eat a cake right now and save it for later. You have to make a choice between two things that you’d like, but that are mutually incompatible.

        But with the inverted order that is the most popular usage of the phrase nowadays, it doesn’t make sense. If you have a cake with you, you can eat it. So you can have a cake and eat it too. It’s only in the other order that it makes logical sense: if you eat a cake, you can’t have it anymore as it’s already eaten.

        • Matt says:

          Good, that was pretty much my understanding of the phrase as commonly used. Thanks for offering a matching interpretation. Just trying to figure out how it applied in the context of the OP. :)

          • SharesLoot says:

            Well, my most favorite comic, Goblins, can’t win the contest without kicking out all my other favorite comics, such as Unsounded. I can’t have Goblins on place 1 and Unsounded on place one or two as well, because this is a knockout tournament and we were in the same bracket.

            Wasn’t this clear in my OP? In the end, only one will remain! ;-)

          • Matt says:

            Okay, now I think I’m following your thought process there. Thanks! :)

  11. Drillgorg says:

    Glenn- Do you condone the use of voting once every 24 hours, since it is possible? I’d like to know before I start doing so or encouraging others to.

    • Mr. Graves says:

      I’m pretty sure if they didn’t want you voting every 24 hours, they wouldn’t make it possible to vote every 24 hours or they would explicitly say not to. How fair would that be if they only told one side not to vote every day, and people voting for the other side weren’t told about it and just kept doing it?

    • Glenn Hauman says:

      We accept that some folks will do it, but we weren't going out of our way to draw attention to it, either. We're unable to fix it, sadly, without ripping apart the code. (Yes, we know Polldaddy may be better on that point, but with the sheer amount of traffic volume we've had it would have cost a fortune.)

  12. Fish says:

    Some tough choices this round, but I’m glad to see at least Homestuck still winning.

  13. Alasdair says:

    How unfortunate that all the comics by women creators were knocked out in the previous round… OK, Girl Genius is a husband-wife collaboration, but apart from that it’s a sausage fest here now.

    (For anyone who doesn’t read Hark A Vagrant, Scandinavia and the World, Girls with Slingshots or Manly Guys Doing Manly Things: you should. I promise your dick won’t fall off as a result.)

    • [Razor] says:

      I doubt(/hope/would be completely disgusted if) they were voted off because of the gender of the people authoring them. That would just be stupid.

  14. benzrf says:

    It MUST come down to OOTS vs MSPA.

    And then…

    I will cry tears of blood when one of them loses.


  15. Optimatum says:

    Andrew Hussie has linked to this from his Tumblr. MSPA is now guaranteed to win.

  16. Roxasfangirl1133 says:

    Nyah! Go Captain!

  17. NK says:

    Looks like Homestuck is back on track and furthering their lead.

  18. Goblins says:

    I hate to go all mushy, but it’d kinda be an honour to get my butt kicked by any one of these comics. I’m just psyched that I’m part of this group!

    • Mutterscrawl says:

      I’m glad you feel that way. I’m sorry but if it comes down to it I’ve got to pick Homestuck over you, Hussie’s update speed, and superior trolling skills manage to edge out over the otherwise equal levels of plot-epicness, text-wallness and character development.

      But you always have a place in my crawling heartbox.

      … Where the hell did that thing get to anyway…?

  19. Mutterscrawl says:

    Curse my tests and papers from keeping me from checking in often enough to notice all this sooner!

  20. Cheese says:

    I honestly don’t like MSPA/HS. They are so tedious to read and the style is jarring. The plots are so terribly convoluted and drawn out, especially in MSPA final boss fights.

    That being said, the animation has gotten to be of very nice quality. However, it’s that same animation that makes me hesitant to actually call MSPA/HS a webcomic. Half the time it’s like watching a cartoon.

    …There’s my rant! I’ve been holding it in because it seems like MSPA/HS has been doing really well (and good for Hussie!). Oh yeah, I also dislike the acronyms used! There were so many, and it was especially confusing whenever the caption at the bottom would describe the following page and I couldn’t match a name with a face.

    • Drillgorg says:

      “However, it’s that same animation that makes me hesitant to actually call MSPA/HS a webcomic. Half the time it’s like watching a cartoon.”

      Well in my opinion and I know a lot of other fans share this, that makes MSPA moreso a WEBcomic, whereas most of the others are paper comics that happen to be posted on the web.

      What I find a bit funny about this round is that as far as I know: after MSPA, C&H is the most multimedia comic here (they have videos and such).

      • michi says:

        Hi Drillgorg! :) Don’t forget SMBC, which has live-action videos that, while not directly related to the daily comic, are of the same genre and often feature the comic’s creator as an actor.

        • Drillgorg says:

          Hi michi, long time no see! You’re certainly right about SMBC Theater, I’m a regular reader but I’ve never watched their videosand forgot they were a thing.

    • Optimatum says:

      If you think that MSPA is in a jarring style, you would be (semi-) right. However, Homestuck, which makes up most of MSPA, is actually drawn with a lot of detail, and Problem Sleuth is also rather smoothly-drawn. I think you’re suffering from a serious case of starting with Jailbreak and not reading the others thoroughly, especially if you think the plot is drawn out and the final bosses take forever. FYI, the plot is only really drawn out in Jailbreak because the commands were user-submitted, and the PS final boss was so long because the comic was a video game parody.

  21. John I.G. says:

    Hey guys, use Challonge instead of bracket maker, it looks way cooler.

  22. irrelevantEternity says:

    Er….. representing the Homestuck fans, I just want to say sorry about the crash. It’s just that there are so many of us, and Andrew kind of….. pointed out the poll, and……. yeah.

    Anyways, we’re REALLY sorry.

    But, not gonna lie, I laughed because this is just like that time we crashed Newgrounds holy crap.

    • SharesLoot says:

      Now, don’t think you’re that big! Compare MSPA votes with Goblins and XKCD…

      MSPA seems nice, but it misses being one of my favorites by a few miles. I might vote for it if it were matched with LICD (Least I could do), but not in any other case.

      I’m a bit annoyed, because the few MSPA fans that wrote here all came off arrogant/full of themselves, even if they meant it as a joke. It’s not my kind of humor.

      • Quarters says:

        Not sure how many of them think of it as an actual joke! HS fandom can be pretty serious at times.

        But yea. On one hand HS did crash Newgrounds. But that doesn’t mean that it crashed a different site too, especially with all of the fanbases potentially converging onto one site.

        But then then again, MSPA does have a headcount of a couple million. Even though they might not all vote? Or even vote for HS! Also, being a fan doesn’t necessarily mean that they would vote at all.

        Logistics are fun to ramble about.

        But yeah MSPA is pretty big.
        [also has a large potential for dickishness]

        • SharesLoot says:

          Yeah, we Goblins fans are a friendlier bunch – at least among ourselves ;) – and we aren’t all that few either. I look forward to seeing the fight for 1st place – provided we can outstrip xkcd, which is currently getting the most votes.

      • Fish says:

        I think the idea is that MSPA fans are devoted enough that they all voted at once. This site went down only two minutes after the author linked.
        . . .
        haha devoted/voted

        • Optimatum says:

          The thing is that they aren’t. That was only the fans who were watching his tumblr, happened to be online, and weren’t busy with something else.

  23. someone says:

    Looks like Gunnerkrigg Court will win against Penny Arcade thanks to the help of the Homestuck fandom.

    It’s merited, though. Penny Arcade as a comic isn’t that great, though it’s still leagues ahead of its would-be competitors like VGCats or CAD. What makes Penny Arcade great is Child’s Play and the PAX. Comparing just the comics, Gunnerkrigg Court offers an intriguing story and compelling characters, Penny Arcade is gag-a-day cartoons on subjects that don’t always endure very well.

    Notice the gag-a-day cartoons have mostly been eliminated by now. Apparently, xkcd is the only one that’ll make it to the next round.

    Speaking of which, I’m impressed at its 9K+ votes. Even Homestuck (8K+), Goblins (8K+) and OotS (7K+) don’t get as many. Maybe people are voting for it against LICD.

  24. Epidermis says:

    QC is pretty lukewarm at best for me. Erfworld felt like a novel with the occassional pics. C&H, Penny arcade pales in comparison to xkcd, SMBC and RA. Homestuck grabbed me at page one with that adventure game format. I’m a sucker for time travel shenanigans, especially of a story this big and complex. Gunnerkrigg was an interesting read, got me reading all the pages so far in no time at all. Something Positive drained me of life force while reading it. LFG, Order of the stick, Girl Genius and Goblins… I picked a random page, couldnt even begin to want to continue. Reading them felt like reading a fan comic of an original masterpiece I couldnt recall which.

    • benzrf says:

      Question 1: Have you ever played D&D, especially edition 3 or 3.5? 100 points if yes, 75 points if no.

      Add up your points from the questions. This is the percentage chance that you should go back and try OotS again from the beginning and keep going.

  25. benzrf says:

    xkcd is all well and good, but if it beats MSPA or OotS, I am going to sue the Internet.

  26. gg says:

    making me choose between Goblins or looking for group, and making me choose between xkcd and least I could do is just plain evil. Seriously.

  27. Hybrid2 says:

    I dont understand all this MS Paint Adventures/Homestuck love.

    To me,it’s not that good art and text I cant follow or understand.

    • FuzzyZergling says:

      Personally, I don’t understand how someone couldn’t love Homestuck.
      Loads of interesting characters, complex and epic plot, intense flash movies, how can these things not sway your emotions?

      Oh well, I guess different people just enjoy different things…

    • CP says:

      MSPA is popular because reading it is a very cinematic experience, and also because it’s designed as a puzzle, with many moving parts that rewards the fanbase for studying everything in extreme detail and getting invested in the story. The art may not be particularly good (in fact, the lack of good art is kind of the centerpiece of the whole site), and the text is full to bursting with extremely stupid memes and enough cursing to turn the whole of Earth’s atmosphere blue, it’s true. But it’s also true that Homestuck has engaging characters and tons of story elements that really spark the imagination.

      Another big part of the fanbase’s obsession comes from their lack of ability to understand why other people don’t like it. They know it’s extremely popular, so they assume it ought to be universally popular, and anyone who doesn’t like it just hasn’t given it enough of a try yet. After all, the comic is designed to reward delving deep into all the tiny details; how could you be expected to enjoy it if you haven’t tried to do that? I don’t think it really occurs to them that lots of people don’t care to worry about tiny details or solve every puzzle that an author decides to hide in a story, or that without those details, the story is just a weird and poorly drawn adventure comic.

      • Seedey Jim says:

        thats just it, the details ARE there. Nobody is hiding anything, Author reveals information in due time just like any proper story progression. Lots of eureka/AHA! moments for everyone who wants to enjoy them. It all boils down to wether you like what you see/read or not. Haters gona hate, Shippers gonna ship (god i hate shippers).

        • FJK B.T. says:

          Whats funny is that even Dante Basco, the actor who played Rufio in the “Hook” movie is giving Homestuck a chance. 4 Acts in and he’s already speculating characters’ love interests.

        • CP says:

          I’m not saying the details aren’t there. For people who object to other stories that ignore little inconsistencies or explain them away as unimportant (A wizard did it!), Homestuck is a wet dream come true, because it turns every supposed inconsistency or odd detail into a critical plot point. But not everyone enjoys that. There are lots of readers who come in looking for a story with a familiar plot arc and good art and accessible characters, and Homestuck doesn’t offer any of that.

          That’s not to say that it’s bad. I like Homestuck, albeit not as well as some of the comics still in this competition. It works on a lot of levels. But it doesn’t work on all of the levels. Not all of them. And the rabid Homestuck fanbase ought to be able to understand that without gnashing their teeth more than once or twice.

  28. Blaperile says:

    I’m personally very happy that Homestuck is making it so far.

    What I like about Homestuck is how Andrew Hussie, the creator, managed to make this story all by himself, only using some art assets from other artists (not often) and music by fans (about 90 times so far), and that he is managing in juggling dozens of characters and locations, all the while making it believable.

    I have never seen anyone do such a funny, emotional, mood whiplashing story, in which there are at least a dozen characters you’d like and have sympathy with.

    What they go through is sort of unreal, but also believable. It is a story about 13/15 year olds, growing up and losing their innocence as they battle an agent who got ultimate power, a demon that ruins the lives of millions, his puppet and his prisoners who have to do the dirty jobs for him.

    Of course you have the right to not read it, but sometimes I really wonder what people don’t like about it.

    • CP says:

      I’m not at all sure I’d say there are a dozen characters I like or have sympathy with in Homestuck. Most of the characters are raving lunatics. Many of them are murderous raving lunatics. There are certainly lots of [i]interesting[/i] characters, with fascinating motivations, and even believable reactions, but that doesn’t make them likeable.

      I could make a list of things I don’t like about Homestuck for you. It wouldn’t begin to make up the list of all the things people don’t like about it, but it’d be a start.

      1) I don’t like the constant cursing.
      2) I don’t like the art style, both because it isn’t especially nice to look at and, more importantly, because it’s very often hard to tell what’s going on, or when it isn’t, it’s because he’s incredibly heavy-handed, even to the point of putting captions in the art to explain what such-and-such facial expression means.
      3) I don’t like the stuff that Hussie puts in for weirdness’ sake. The juggalo element particularly, but there’s probably a thousand pages of stuff that make the comic materially worse by being there. Of course, a lot of it is important to the plot now, but none of it actually had to have been important at the time.
      4) I don’t like that the whole comic is one big arc (despite it being broken up into “acts”. There’s no place to break in and catch up – you have to start at the beginning in order for any of it to make any sense.
      5) I don’t like that the beginning is so tediously written (even up until about the point when Jade’s sleepwalking robot explodes, the comic feels directionless and not very well-done at all).
      6) I don’t like the fanbase constantly going on about how many of them there are, as if they’re some kind of monolithic entity bumbling around the internet saying “Sorry if something tangentially related to our interests caused us to crash your server! There are just so MANY of us! Lolololol! Remember that time we crashed Newgrounds?”

      • Page of Space says:

        1) The cursing isn’t so much constant as creative.
        2) The art style can be a bit messy, I admit. But the captions are there to give it a second-person POV feel, and also the picture itself can go unexplained unless there is a caption given. But the style gets much better, especially with Hero Mode, Scribble Mode and Hussnasty. There are also a few guest artists involved in flashes (Especially Cascade) that are pretty awesome. You might want to give some of the flash games (Alterniabound) a shot as well. They’re all rather nicely done.
        3) That’s what Hussie does. Writing things that doesn’t make sense and then making you facepalm for it later. Also, the juggalo part has a lot to do with expressing Gamzee’s title.
        4) Well, sadly, there’s not much you can do about it. Many of the characters have extremely complicated pasts, interests and personalities. Things have to be carefully tied together to make sense, so skipping ahead won’t do any good. It’s definitely for hardcore readers.
        5) Now, I have to agree with you on that one. On my first attempt, I quit reading when it came to Dave’s intro, but on the second attempt I loved it and finished it up. Maybe luck? Or just personal opinion?
        6) Excuse use while we’re trying to show a little love for possibly the most important element of our live right now and feeling rather proud about it?

        • CP says:

          1) The cursing is definitely constant. Creative, too, but it never, ever, stops.
          2-4) I’m saying any of these are objectively bad. Just that I don’t like them.
          6) Exactly. The fact that a webcomic is becoming the most important element of anyone’s life is exactly what I dislike. You guys are embarrassing yourselves.

        • Flight says:

          “6) Excuse use while we’re trying to show a little love for possibly the most important element of our live right now and feeling rather proud about it?”

          Is this really true? Is that how Homestuck fans feel? Wow.

          • benzrf says:

            I can’t speak for everyone, but I CAN say this:

            1. Homestuck is NOT the most important element of my life right now.
            2. It IS something that I probably devote more brainpower to than is entirely healthy. :P

          • benzrf says:

            And if you were wondering what the most important element of my life right now actually is, I’m afraid that would have to go to playing/modding Minecraft. XP

      • benzrf says:

        1) I’m not going to argue with this; it’s a matter of taste really.
        2) Again, a matter of taste. It does improve though (assuming that you only looked at Acts 1-3 or so).
        3)Taste again. XP (that is an emoticon btw)
        4) Yeah, a lot of this is about personal taste. XD
        5) It IS kind of directionless, but personally at least I kind of liked how it felt like I was seeing more and more parts of a picture over time, until finally the whole thing is revealed.
        6) Yes, that is smug and annoying. I haven’t talked to a lot of other Homestuck fans, but if all of them are like that, I’m not sure I want to. :C

  29. Torben says:

    Homestuck has it’s fans, as legitimately as any other web-comic.

    It may be different tastes, a different mindsets, experiences, expectations.
    The artistic style of Homestuck is like a wall for me, I’ve been around since
    text adventures on the C-64, it’s often a question of the story, and how it’s
    transported. And Homestuck feels like a punishment for me. Where others
    see inspiration, it’s crude and unimaginative for me, my brain feels offended
    being forced to read it. I tried to get into it, as it mentioned very often here.
    There were other comics, I felt I dislike in an instant, which I really got into.
    And no doubt, everyone has favorites, others can’t understand what they
    see in them. And then again, it really may be a question of personal
    taste, and what helps you to find balance from the daily grind.

    It may sound as if I could be an artistic snob. And yes, I like theater,
    program cinema, but then again, I love B-Movies, and things, were
    colleagues ask themselves, why, he’s intelligent. And that’s it, we
    darn human beings with our big brains. There is too much space in
    them, sometimes they need to be shown, to take a deep breath.

    I won’t vote for Homestruck. But I’ll appreciate it, when it wins, because
    there are people who love it, and they have every reason too.
    I’m excited to see, how this ends.