Atra's Invite

Cover art for The Stone of Contention - Webcomics history returns!

Webcomics history returns

The Stone of Contention, drawn between 1994 and 1996, was the first comic I ever put online, and may well have been the first truely story-based comic on the Web. It ran on the University of Groningen's server, on an account owned by a friend, Age Mooy, who also did the very rudimentary web design. The publication process was straight-forward. I stealthily scanned the pages on a machine owned by the University, then edited them on University machines, often ruining the image in the process because I had no idea what I was doing or that the image editing software was showing me colours that wouldn't appear in the saved file. The comics were all in Dutch although webpages in English were offered for readers abroad. And there were quite a few readers. I got comments in the guestbook.

Serialisation started in November, 1994 and ended in August, 1996. With the completion of the story, I soon lost interest in maintaining the website. Once my friend graduated, his account was eventually taken offline, and as a result, the original website only exists on a bunch of floppies in my desk drawer and on the Internet archives. This is, on the whole a good thing, because the comic as originally published online looked awful. Now, with this translated, re-lettered and remastered edition, you will be able to enjoy the series as it should have looked all along. Actually, it's rather good. That young man who wrote it could keep a good pace going, and had some funny jokes in him. On a good day, he could even draw. I should call him up and see if he's available.

Because I'm very pretentious, I want to dedicate this revised version of "The Stone of Contention" to Age Mooy, the man who got me into webcomics. Haven't seen him in years even though he's still in town. Should get in touch with him too.

Reinder Dijkhuis,
June 3, 2005.

The year: 994. A peaceful scene is interrupted by a heinous, heinous crime!!!

In every robbery, there's someone who just has to go and make things complicated!

Do not taunt a witch if you like your shape the way it is.

Tamlin's new shape is even more rotund than his old one.

Ragna is concerned about Jake's behaviour.

Kel can do some magic, nothing to boast about, really.

Today's the fifth anniversary of the continuous online publication of Rogues of Clwyd-Rhan! The storyline you're reading now was published online long before the year 2000, of course, but July 1, 2000 was the day I started doing it properly.

The sabbath is invitation-only. But that shouldn't stop any witch with half a brain.

Between the rain, the mud, the bad mandrake and the gatecrashers, the Sabbath is a disaster!

... and the goat has indigestion. Did I mention that? THE GOAT HAS INDIGESTION!