The ‘Conan the Barbarian’ title from Free Comic Book Day unites the ‘Howardverse’

Jim Zub and Jonas Scharf’s story is free to download and kicks off the ‘Battle of the Black Stone’ event.

Last Saturday was Free Comic Book Day, and Titan participated by releasing Conan: Battle of the Black Stone, which was more than just a Conan story. And now they’ve made it available as a free download on their website.

(As an aside, you can find several of the 2024 FCBD offerings on Comixology as free downloads, including those from Marvel, DC and Dark Horse).

The story by regular Conan the Barbarian scribe Jim Zub and artist Jonas Scharf starts out like any other Conan story might begin, with the unruly barbarian slicing his way through his enemies, but it takes a turn when Conan spots a symbol on the necklace of a fallen foe. This symbol:

(If you haven’t read the issue and don’t want any SPOILERS, then I’d suggest clicking the link in the first paragraph before reading on …)

Battle of the Black Stone is an event, not just featuring Conan but several other Robert E. Howard characters across several timelines, including Solomon Kane, Dark Agnes and James Allison, who can see the past lives he’s led:

Howard always said his stories existed in the same universe, and now Titan will bring that life — as all these pulp heroes are connected by this mysterious sigil:

According to the solicits for this issue, this foreboding mark and the doom it brings “will take more than a Barbarian-King to stop its relentless march upon time, space and sanity,” and I guess we know now who the “more” will be. While an exact release date hasn’t been announced, Battle of the Black Stone will begin this fall.

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