It looks like Nintendo and Robot Comics have won the race to get comics onto video game consoles (well, the race I wanted anyway) and readers are the ones who get the prize - three free comics available to download at DSComics.com for the Nintendo DSi.

Titles include the first issues of post-apocalyptic highway adventure "Thunder road" by Sean Demory and Steven Sanders, video game commentary "Anda's Game" by Dara Naraghi and Esteve Polls, and sci-fi thriller "Misery Depot" by Hermes Pique and Juan Romera. The reading experience falls somewhere between Amazon's Kindle and Apple's iPhone, utilizing the DSi's dual screens and clamshell design to allow the aesthetic of a book and the convenience of a slideshow. Though readers must use Nintendo's latest-gen handheld, the DSi to obtain the free comics, the spirit of the sequential art outreach seems to be in the right place. In an official press release, Robot Comics Director Hermes Pique breaks it down, "Our goal is proximity in the broadest sense of the word. We don't want anything - distribution, hardware, even money and copyright -, to get in the way between comics and their potential readers. By releasing free comics for popular hand-helds we are reaching a brand new audience that was largely ignored by the comics industry." Given the success of mobile comics, console comics are another good option for readers on the move. Of course as the line between smart phones and video game devices continues to blur, these two categories could eventually become one. Until then, Robot Comics seems to have established a pretty cool console precedent with its DSi offerings.