To The Beastlands! Mad Cave Studios Announces Crusader!

May those most righteous prevail. Coming in September 2023 is the newest creator-owned fantasy adventure series from Matt Emmons (THE COUNCIL OF FROGS, DAGGER DAGGER, GARDENER) and Andriy Lukin (LOWER YOUR SIGHTS, DOWN BELOW, DAGGER DAGGER), Crusader!

Follow the journey of the nameless Templar, Crusader, as he finds himself spirited away to the mythical Beastlands whilst following his holy quest. In these strange lands, he finds himself face to face with goblins, deathless ghouls, and the sinister Masters that strike fear into the hearts of its denizens. Can the Crusader make peace with himself, and with the inhabitants of this new realm, in order to make it back home?

Writer & Artist: Matt Emmons – Letterer: Andriy Lukin
Release Date: September 6th, 2023

Synopsis: A Templar Knight finds himself transported to a dangerous realm known as the Beastlands. With sinister entities known as The Masters hunting him down, all he has is his sword and a weird, goblin-like creature named Grimbel to guide him through this strange new world.

In addition to being a fun and pulpy action-adventure fantasy series, Matt Emmons notes a personal connection to the series; “I was raised Catholic, though never really engaged with it or practiced beyond when I was required to. I’ve struggled trying to reconcile how contradictory some of the most extreme versions of faith can be. It’s a common feeling I’ve found with others that feel like we have to unlearn that we don’t have to follow a certain belief system in order to be “”good”” and that sometimes we really do need to question systems in place rather than be party to them. The Crusader at the center of the story, struggles with a much more exaggerated version of that, trying to survive during a crisis of faith and return for the better.”


To celebrate the release of our all-new, four-issue miniseries, we’ve teamed up with Diamond and Lunar Distribution to create two exclusive covers for Crusader #1 from legendary illustrators Michael Walsh and Marie Enger! You can check them out below!

Cover Artist: Michael Walsh

Cover Artist: Marie Enger


Writer/Illustrator, Matt Emmons
Matt Emmons is a cartoonist based in Philadelphia. Raised on a healthy diet of 80s monster movies, he now spends his time making comics about creatures and robots of his own.

“Crusader has been a fun challenge! I’ve been trying to capture the feeling of a pulpy, fun adventure story that embodies everything I’ve loved about the genre, and I hope it translates. I’ve also been wanting to draw Pilgrim in action for years, so it’s very exciting to finally bring him to the page.” – Matt Emmons

Letterer, Andriy Lukin
Andriy Lukin is a comic book creator and graphic designer from Sumy, Ukraine. As a letterer, Andriy won Mad Cave Studios’ Talent Search 2022 and his works were published in a variety of books, including Lower Your Sights, Down Below & Dagger Dagger. He also specializes in creating logotypes, book design and cover art for comic books, music albums, tabletop games and other art forms.

“Crusader is a fun, adventurous title that won’t leave fantasy fans disappointed. It’s a story of reevaluating your goals and principles, filled with awesome art, memorable characters and great action scenes! I’m very excited to help Matt Emmons with his artistic vision and I hope our readers will appreciate the work we put into this series!” – Andriy Lukin

Sneak Peek!

Take a peek into the wilds of the Beastlands. We’ve got your first preview of our upcoming adventure series, Crusader, below!
Geek Vibes Nation
Geek Vibes Nation@GeekVibesNation
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"The Tiger’s Tongue was engrained with passion, family intrigue and a sometimes-dark reality." -Martin Sexton
Publishers Weekly
Publishers Weekly@PublishersWkly
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“Showdowns culminate in an emotional conclusion as hubris meets personal sacrifice. The twists will keep readers on their toes in what proves a captivating tale.” -Publisher’s Weekly
Pastrami Nation
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“The story is vibrant and fresh, just what the comic book world needs... It’s smart, refreshing, and a great addition to the already great library Mad Cave has amassed.” -Nolan P. Smith

Crusader is now available for pre-order on the official Mad Cave Studios website, and will be available at your favorite bookstore, local comic shop, and digital comic reader on September 6th, 2023!


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