If you are a gamer, and you are not a puritan, and you like funny things, you should be reading the web comic Oglaf. Oglaf will make your Mondays worth getting out of bed for.

One of my favorite strips

(That whole “not a puritan” bit: there’s the rub. Oglaf is Not Safe For Work. Not every episode is about sex, but this is definitely one of the cleaner ones. And even it has boobies.)

Oglaf is, apparently, the brainchild of Trudy Cooper, who also pens Platinum Grit. I say “apparently” because the web site gives nothing away. Oglaf.com is a lesson in web simplicity: there’s a new comic weekly, and an archive (which kindly lets you know exactly how NSFW each strip is), and a link to a very limited web store. And nothing else.

But that’s not why I love this comic. Nor are the boobs, though they don’t hurt. What I really love is how Cooper captures a style of fantasy I’ve fallen away from but still remember from my youth. It sits somewhere between Conan the Barbarian and the Chronicles of Gor, and taps into the imagery of Vallejo, Frazetta, and Brom. (To be fair, the strip I’ve pasted in above doesn’t do that justice; try this one instead. Just keep my warnings in mind.) Although the comic bounces between a multitude of short, disconnected plotlines, with just a few recurring characters, it nonetheless evokes a distinct setting. I’m tempted to run a game in this world–though I’d need a tolerant set of players.

The artwork is, without exception, fantastic. I really like Cooper’s use of color; check out the palette in this strip. The occasional forays into the realm of fairytales give it a satirical edge. She also sometimes lets us see that she’s a gamer herself, letting a few D&D tropes slip in. And the tenuous storylines that do exist keep me coming back for more.

So go ahead. Click on the archive and start reading. And bookmark it for Monday mornings. Just make sure your boss isn’t looking.

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