A Decade of Deathworld

September 22, 1995. A young Canadian decides to start drawing a science-fiction based comic for his university newspaper, and spends the next ten years on a journey he never expected. Even though the little-known comic called Deathworld didn't actually appear on the web until a few years later, it seems fair to say it joins the ranks of the granddaddies of webcomicdom this week.

Starting off at an update frequency of once a week, Deathworld (written and drawn by Rudi Gunther), for the most part remained unnoticed by the web at large. While a bit difficult to describe in few words, one could say that Deathworld is loosly science-fiction oriented, with loads of supernatural and heroic elements thrown in. The languid pace at which it's stories developed proved somewhat of a turn-off for anyone except the most diehard. Still, Rudi was able to garner a small fanbase, and kept on pursuing the goals that any webcomic creator has, which always seemed just a bit out of reach.

As noted by Ping Teo in her Webcomic Finds blog, Deathworld really came into it's own with the Dark Heart storyline, in which Rudi started to really make an attempt at serious story writing. Since then, the various plots and arcs have grown in length and complexity, to a point where Rudi now draws off the mythos he's created to generate new stories.

With an archive nearing 700 comics, it's fairly easy to see how the comic (and the artist) has developed over the many years it has run for. One can only hope that Deathworld will continue for a while to come.

- author unknown, 2005

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