Kodansha Comics joined the digital age yesterday with its own iPad app, and it kicked it off with a special deal, offering all 16 volumes of Fairy Tail at a discounted price of $2.99 per volume.
Dallas Middaugh, director of publishing services for Kodansha Comics, announced the app to a standing-room-only crowd that had come to see Fairy Tail creator Hiro Mashima at the Kodansha panel at New York Comic Con on Friday evening. The app launched at midnight on Friday with four series: Fairy Tail, Arisa, Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei, and Until the Full Moon, and Middaugh promised that more are on the way. The standard price for a volume of manga will be $4.99, and the special discount on Fairy Tail will last for two weeks, until October 28.
Middaugh also announced several new series and two omnibuses at the panel. He drew loud cheers from the audience when he showed a slide of Kodansha's Sailor Moon and Codename Sailor V manga and said, "We have had to double our print run on Sailor Moon, bringing us to 100,000 copies in print, and I don't think it is going to stay at 100,000." The second volumes of both series will be released on November 16, and from then on Sailor Moon will be on a bimonthly schedule with new volumes coming out in January and March.
The biggest new title announcement of the panel was Attack on Titan, by Hajime Isayama. The manga is set in a world where humanity is threatened by 60-foot tall humanoids known as the Titans, and the remaining survivors hide from them in a walled city. "This was a monster hit in Japan, with over five-million copies," said Middaugh, who described it as "kind of like The Walking Dead, only with giants." Middaugh also announced that Kodansha will publish Miles Edgeworth: Ace Attorney, the sequel to their Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney books (based on the game).
Two older but popular Del Rey series will return in omnibus form next year: Del Rey will publish the first three volumes of Genshiken in omnibus form May 2012 and follow that up with a three-volume Kitchen Princess omnibus in June.