Published 21-03-2018 Category Indy Artists Read 3041 times

Trail, Exilium and more by Ben Slabak

Ben Slabak is a Sydney based writer and publisher. Having founded Cloud 9 Comix in 2010 with the initial focus on digital comics, he ultimately published several hundred titles from indie creators worldwide. Since then, the business model had been tweaked several times with Cloud 9 Comix now primarily focusing on the creation of original content and the development of intellectual property. Ben himself turned to writing comics, launching his very first series, 'Trail', back in late 2014, which is based on an action-adventure novel that he has been writing for some time and one that he aims to finally release in 2018. He has since created several more series, including 'Exilium', which has been signed by the US-based Alterna Comics and will be released worldwide as part of their hugely popular newsprint line, starting in August this year. In addition, Ben is also currently producing several bande dessinée format graphic novels aimed primarily at the European market. Ben has so far only used Comics on Demand for all his self-published comics, with Doug providing a top quality product as well as service, and he looks forward to working with Doug for many more years to come.

Other than comics, Ben has also produced a travelogue titled 'The Beloved Land', which is the end result of his work and travels in Egypt as a member of an archaeological team, having spent three months excavating three ancient tombs just outside The Valley of the Kings in Luxor, as well as travelling all over Egypt. His area of expertise is translating ancient hieroglyphic texts.


Genre: sci-fi, action mini-series (4 out of 6 issues complete, 5th in production). Coming in August 2018 to comic shops worldwide via Alterna Comics

Synopsis:  In the late 21st century, the first official contact is made with extraterrestrial life forms. They arrive not as conquerors, but in need of refuge as they run from a superior force. As they eventually settle on Earth, not all humans are happy to co-exist with them. Tensions grow and conflict arises. With the humanity deeply divided, a new threat reaches Earth. The very same threat that drove the alien refugees from their home planet, in search of a new one. Can the joint human/alien forces resist the onslaught? Who are these invaders? Can the humans overcome their deep divisions and unite against them? Find out as the story of Exilium unfolds.

Artist: Salomon Farias; Colourist: Marc Sintes; Letterer: HdE

Exilium 01 ALTERNA cover







Genre: action/adventure mini-series (6 out of 7 issues complete, 7th in production)

Synopsis: Renowned 13th-century world traveler Marco Polo witnessed many wonders on his journeys from Europe to China and back. One, in particular, relating to the biblical Three Kings, stands out. Now, five passionate individuals band together in an attempt to unravel the mystery left behind by Marco Polo and protect what could be one of the greatest finds of all time, from falling into the wrong hands. Follow the adventures of the Trail team as they traverse the globe whilst competing with sinister foes for the prize. Fans of Indiana Jones series are sure to enjoy this new action/adventure series.

Artist: Judit Tondora (issues 1-4), Antonio Brandao (issues 5-7); Colourist: Marc Sintes; Letterer: HdE







Trail: New World

Genre: action/adventure mini-series (2 out of 5 issues complete, 3rd in production)

Synopsis: A new Trail action/adventure series spin-off, set in the late 1940s. A groundbreaking new archaeological discovery from the age of Vikings in Greenland draws interest from a prominent archaeologist, William Trail, but others, too, whose motives seem entirely questionable. A race to the find will ensue as William, along with the pilot of his chartered plane, Sofia Jonsson, land themselves in all sorts of strife, and will need help from an unlikely source. What will this find reveal? Did Vikings find something of immense value during their exploration of North America over a thousand years ago? Find out as the story of Trail: New World unfolds.

Artist and colourist: Marc Sintes; Letterer: HdE



Terminus a Quo

Genre: sci-fi, action/adventure mini-series (1 out of 5 issues complete, 2nd in production)

Synopsis: Time. It has been studied and debated for thousands of years. Science, philosophy, and religion have long agonised over its very nature, struggling to define it. When an unremarkable stone age artefact yields a stunning discovery, a young archaeologist's world will be turned upside down as the preconceived notions of time and space are torn down, raising questions about the very reality we live in. 'Terminus A Quo' is an exciting new adventure into the unknown.

Artist: Pablo Verdugo Munoz; Colourist: Marc Sintes; Letterer: HdE



Genre: sci-fi, drama (bande dessinée format graphic novel, currently in production for 2019 release)

Short synopsis: A sci-fi story inspired by such classics as 'Moby Dick' and 'The Old Man and the Sea'.

Artist and colourist: Gabriel Serra; Letterer: HdE


1566 A.D.

Genre: Historical, action (bande dessinée format graphic novel, currently in production for 2019 release)

Short Synopsis: Based on a real-life event that took place in Szigetvar in Central Europe in 1566, where a small number of primarily Croatian soldiers, led by the great Croatian duke Nikola Zrinski, resisted the might of the Ottoman army, and faced with certain annihilation, opted to charge out of their besieged fortress heroically rather than wait for certain death. Their sacrifice was not in vain, having inflicted such casualties that the Ottoman army had to turn back, with Suleiman the Great also having died during the siege of Szigetvar. Their charge towards Vienna and conquering Europe was halted, and the battle was later hailed as one that 'saved the civilisation' by the infamous French cardinal Richelieu.

Artist: Jake Bilbao; Colourist: Marc Sintes; Letterer: HdE


The Mapmaker

Genre: All-ages, fantasy (bande dessinée format graphic novel, currently in production for 2019 release)

Artist and colourist: Francesca Carita; Letterer: HdE


The Beloved Land

Genre: Travelogue, history

Synopsis:  Follow in the trail of two aspiring Egyptologists as they discover for their very first time, the hidden beauty of Egypt beyond the beaten track. This beautifully presented hardcover travelogue conveys the visual memories of their journey, capturing the majesty that is Egypt, both past and present. A magnificent collection of over 300 colour photographs spread across 240 pages, that is sure to inspire.


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