I’m going to try something a bit different with this review. I’m just testing out some different writing styles, seeing what works best. If you would like to give me some feedback on this style, leave a comment below or write it in the Feedback section of my blog. Thanks!

Once again, The Throne of Caprice has ascended for the take. Whether the desire is of benevolence or madness, the Throne cares not. The mountain has risen and the world shudders as the vying persons and coalitions struggle for their own ultimate end.
For thou to stand at the top and seize both keys, become The Absolute.

THE CITY OF EPICENTER HAS DRAWN PEOPLE INTO ITS CRADLE SINCE ITS INCEPTION 15 YEARS AGO. NOMADS AND CONGREGATIONS JOURNEY TO THIS CITY THAT SURROUNDS AN ENTIRE MOUNTAIN IN HOPES TO WITNESS THE NEXT EPOCH OR TO PLAY A PART IN IT. FOR THERE IS NO GOD IN THE WORLD AND THE MIRACLES AND DISTORTIONS THAT SHAPE LIVES AND REALITY ARE MADE SOLELY BY THE WILL OF MAN AND THE UNIMAGINABLE POWER OF THE THRONE. AND THE THRONE CARES NOT WHO SITS ON IT…

AMEN HAS AT LONG LAST RETURNED TO THE LAND THAT ONCE PURGED HIM. HE VOWS HIS ASPIRATIONS WILL BE ANSWERED, AT WHATEVER COST.

KATHRINE, A YOUNG BIBLIOPHILE AND ARTISTIC SAVANT OF A PROMINENT FAMILY, HAS LOST HER WILL AND IS ON THE VERGE OF ABANDONING THE WORLD WHILST SECRETLY HARBORING THOUGHTS OF MURDERING HER OWN TWIN SISTER. THE FATES BEHEST SHE TO AN ADVENT WITH WHICH NONE COULD HAVE KNOWN.

‘THE FACE OF MY LORD BE FORGOTTEN BUT HIS ACTIONS WILL FOREVER BE EVIDENT” IS THE CREED IMBUED INTO THE HEARTS OF THE FOLLOWERS OF THE GOSPELS OF THE NEW LORDS, BUT SOME SECRETLY BRANDISH THEIR OWN DARK MACHINATIONS FOR THE GROUP AND THE WORLD.

AND THE GIANT OF A MAN WHO ALREADY STANDS AT THE TOP OF THE MOUNTAIN. WHAT DOES HE WAIT FOR?…

Story

The Absolute has a pretty intriguing storyline, but unfortunately it is a bit clouded by a few things. The introduction to the comic is a bit confusing. I personally needed a bit more background information to be able to really grasp what was going on. The Absolute was very easy to understand the second time I read through it –but this is not necessary since you piece things together as you go.  What I’m getting at here is that you really shouldn’t have to piece things together, it should be clear from the start.

Although in context it isn’t completely unclear what is happening here, the overall purpose of this conversation is what I lacked at first and therefore I dismissed it as irrelevant.

One thing that helps this is the synopsis. It actually breaks down the entire story so far into chunks and it clarified a lot of stuff for me. I don’t think you should rely on your synopsis to tell the story, though.

I’m not really sure where to put this, so I’m just going to throw it into the story section since it affects the overall read. I had to zoom out to get a better view of the layout and the flow of the panels. Zooming out has this nasty effect, however, of making the text harder to read. I found changing my zoom settings to 90-75% was about right to see everything comfortably. This should probably be addressed for future releases so that the reader doesn’t feel cramped while reading.

I was unable to view the entire panel at standard zoom.
This is set at 75% zoom.

Writing

I don’t really have anything bad to say about the writing. The story progresses nicely in this sense and conversations flow relatively smoothly (minus a few spelling errors).

One issue that I do have though is that sometimes there is too much text in a page. Getting rid of some unnecessary conversations or shortening what characters have to say into only what is absolutely necessary could improve this and help create better flow throughout the entire comic.

If I can skim through these speech bubbles and still know what you are talking about, you can cut some stuff out.

Art

One reason why I struggled to really grasp the beginning of this comic was because of the art. The line work is a bit sloppy and can make it difficult to see what is going on all the time unless you slow down and really take your time to look at each panel.

Scenes could be much more visible with cleaner lines.

Talking about panels, there is some nice panel overlap that really flatters the flow. It’s pretty conservative though, and I would prefer to see more of it.

Take advantage of panel crossovers! They really bring a page to life.

Actually, there is something that I find a bit odd with the panels. Every now and then the side border of the panels are missing. Maybe it is a bit of OCD kicking in, but it bugged me more than it probably should have. The page felt incomplete and needed that one straight line to really finish the aesthetics.

The missing side border of the panel makes it feel cut off (especially the left side here).

I found the overall art a bit awkward sometimes as there was a mix of different mediums, which can be a good thing if done right, but in this case it didn’t quite work because they weren’t blended together correctly. Also, the lack of straight (ruler-precision) lines irked me.

The bending buildings does add an eerie vibe, but that could be done with straight lines and sharp angles. The smoke in the top left corner also stands out as separate from the rest of the art style and looks awkward.

That being said, there were some nice art improvements that occurred in the later pages. The lines are slightly cleaner, and the scenes appear easier to interpret what is going on.

Nice clean lines here with relatively simple designs, previous pages were too busy.

Conclusion

To sum up, I think that The Absolute has some great potential with some really nice writing. Raymond Brege’s art is better, but still has plenty of room for improvement. Not much of the plot has been developed, I feel like we have just been introduced to the prologue in a way, so I’m looking forward to seeing where Raymond takes his characters as they climb the mountain.


Read The Absolute by Raymond Brege here.