With a new, and final, chapter of the Jotunn War comic coming to Kickstarter in the near future, let’s look back at the comic that started the War and introduced many readers to the Vikingverse setting. Launched with a successful Kickstarter in 2019, the brutal series seamlessly blended fantasy, war and science fiction tropes into a new way of looking at the legends of the North.
The comic opens with a Viking warrior rising up on an icy battlefield strewn with bodies, seemingly having survived some terrible battle. Eventually, this man is revealed to be one of the einherjar, warriors chosen by the Valkyrie to live and fight in Valhalla after their death. The battle being fought is against a group of titanic creatures known as the jotunn. These monstrous creatures are being fought by the einherjar using a mix of weapons from swords and axes, to more modern weaponry. Many familiar tropes of Viking stories are reinvented during this first part of the Jotunn War story, with science fictional elements adding fantastic element to the comic that is weirder even than what is found in the original stories and poems that created the Vikings legends and myths.
Mixing science fiction with the fantasy of Viking legends is nothing new, Marvel Comics having done it for decades in Thor comics and movies, but the approach of the Jotunn War is more grounded than what you might see in those stories making it feel more like the classic tales. The art of Devmalya Pramani and the coloring of Paul Little bring the worlds of the Jotunn War to life on the comic page and are instrumental in creating the tone of the story. The palette of Little’s coloring manages to balance the richness of the explosive colors of battle between the einherjar and the jotunn, while more earthy color choices help to ground the fantastic elements in a world that feels real despite having energy blasting war machines and grotesque gigantic monsters as opponents.
Who would enjoy the Jotunn War comics? Obviously, first and foremost, it would be of interest to fans of Viking fiction and lore, and the myths and legends of the North Lands. But, it could also appeal to fans of the manga and anime series Attack on Titan, having similar elements of humans fighting off colossal enemies against incredible odds. Even with the science-fiction elements of the comic, fans of swords & sorcery and dark fantasy fiction can find an engaging story within these pages. Each issue, as well as the other entries in the VikingVerse, build up a rich and engrossing world that would be of interest to those readers who want worlds with deep lore.
The Jotunn War is a thoroughly modern take on ancient stories that have long been an important part of fantasy fiction and popular culture. Stories of the Vikings, both real and imaginary, and their myths have captured the imaginations of generations of comic readers and fantasy fans, and works like the Jotunn War will help to sustain that interest for years to come. This comic takes ideas that are familiar and comfortable and makes them into something new by twisting genre expectations into a story that is fresh and surprising.
The VikingVerse is being developed in other media, including a role-playing game, novels and non-fiction, by creator and writer Ian Stuart Sharpe and Outland Entertainment, so keep an eye open both here at the Outland Entertainment and the VikingVerse websites. With the new chapter of the Jotunn War coming to Kickstarter soon, get in on the ground floor of an exciting universe if you haven’t already done so.
You can purchase the first issue (along with the other two published issues of the comic series) of the Jotunn War as a digital comic from the Comixology and DriveThruComics, and well as directly on the Outland Entertainment website.