You’re often spoilt for choice when it comes to entertainment on the internet, and webcomics are no exception. There are so many for you to read that it can be overwhelming, but the Comic Rocket webcomic reader tries to make navigating these options just a little easier.
Comic Rocket the website has been around for a while and is a useful webcomics feed/aggregator. Once you’ve signed up (which is free) it allows you to browse and find new webcomics and save the ones you like as favourites, sets up bookmarks for you to record how far through you are in a comic, and lets you know when new pages have been added to a series you like.
The Comic Rocket app is a fairly straight translation of the website, with the same features set up in pretty much the same way. If you’re familiar with Comic Rocket online then you’ll have no trouble getting into the app.
You can browse by genre or staff picks, and Comic Rocket will also give you recommendations based on what you’ve been reading previously. The app boasts over 13,000 comics and I’m willing to believe it – with all the time and good intentions in the world, you’ll never get through them all.
But Comic Rocket at least gives you a chance to read some of them with a little bit of ease, and hopefully a better shot at finding more of the gems among the coal.
Unlike some comic aggregators, Comic Rocket takes you directly to the comic creator’s sites rather than replicating their content. This is good for supporting the artists, whose incomes are often tied to page views – Comic Rocket can actually help them with that by suggesting new readers, rather than hindering them like other aggregator sites that are effectively stealing those views for themselves.
One complaint I have about Comic Rocket (both as an app and a website) is that it only records your progress through a comic if you use its navigation rather than the comic site’s.
If you click next on the webcomic, Comic Rocket thinks you’re still on the previous page, and it’s easy to do this several times in a row without realising – until you come back to carry on reading next time and find that your bookmark is several comics behind where you want it to be. But this is a minor complaint, and once you’re aware of it it’s not really a problem.
You can, of course, read any webcomic in your device’s browser. And there seem to be a few apps specifically dedicated to particular webcomics (although I can’t comment on their authenticity).
But what Comic Rocket offers is a one-stop shop, with all your favourite comics collected together, and the potential to discover new favourites right there with them. If you’re not a webcomic person this probably isn’t the app for you, but if you regularly read more than one comic online – or would like to start – then Comic Rocket would be worth checking out.