Madefire is a free comic book app that was launched recently on the iPad platform.
It's not your usual app that display static comic pages. Madefire is about motion comics. The founders call their titles "motion books". Basically, it takes advantage of technology and adds interactivity to comics.
The other part of Madefire is the Motion Book Tool where creators can make their own comics.
If you have an iPad, you can download it and try. If not, watch the trailer below to see what it's all about.
Motion comics is not new. It has appeared in video games such as...
Bottom of the Ninth by Ryan Wood is also a type of motion comics.
And this is The Cobol Job from Inception which is almost an anime except it's not frame by frame.
Madefire is an interesting concept. But will it work? Is it just a gimmick?
I downloaded the app and read 3 free motion books.
It is certainly an experience reading the comics on Madefire. It will not be wrong to say that I'm watching the comics.
The book covers have characters that move to the tilt of your iPad. The panels, dialogue and other visual elements are called up sequentially at command. There's also music and sound effects. In the title Captain Stone, you can even go inside one of the panels and move around.
Oh, and the art is incredible. Some of the artists who worked on the titles include Dave Gibbons (Watchmen), Bill Sienkiewicz (Elektra: Assassin), Robbie Morrison (The Adventures of Nikolai Dante), Mike Carey (The Unwritten), etc.
It is certainly a different form of storytelling, but to me it's not necessary a better form of storytelling. I was a bit tired after finger-clicking through trying to move the story forward. Speech bubbles also seem unnecessary since the iPad is capable of sound. Why not go with voice acting?
Madefire is a mix of animation and comics, but it's not really animation but more of motion graphics. Whether you'll like it will depend on the format of storytelling you prefer.
I'm an old school comic reader. I prefer static pages simply because it takes less effort to read them. I have no preference to digital or physical format though. I like animation because it's effortless to watch. I don't mind audio books. I also don't mind a book with just text either. I guess you can say that I'm the lazy type of content consumer.
I shall continue to follow this and see if I would warm up to this form of storytelling.
What do you think about Madefire?