There aren't many times -- at least not since childhood -- when I've unpacked a book and immediately run off to sit down and read it through end to end. But that's what I did with "The Great Outdoor Fight" and it was worth it. There's a bit of a retro thing in reading what began life as a webcomic in a print medium, but for an extended storyline like this one, a book strikes me as just the right format. It gives the reader the chance to really get into the action without having to hit "Next" every few frames, and to pick up, not only on the humor, but also what is in fact quite a good storyline.
Achewood's artwork is not as complex as that you'll find in many webcomics or graphic novels, and sure, it might be interesting to see how Frank Miller, say, would tell the story of the GOF. But Onstad is no slouch with a pen and his relatively minimalist style is a big part of setting the tone for the story. Where I think he really shines, though, is less in the art than in the characters he's created. I particularly enjoy Roast Beef's distinctive turn of phrase (describing information he's known since childhood, for example, as "Dogg it is brain tape since young times"), and the friendship between Beef and Ray that is the cornerstone of this story (and with apologies to an earlier reviewer, by the way, Beef and Ray are anthropomorphic cats, not dogs). Most other regular characters have cameo appearances, including a very entertaining few panels where Cornelius Bear, my favorite character and himself no slouch in the toughness department, having won the first annual Bad*ss Games in a walk, silently locks his trumpet in its case after Lyle makes a comment that cannot be reprinted in an Amazon review.
While Achewood fans will have seen the strips before, Chris Onstad has added a good deal of extra material, mostly relating to the history of the GOF and its champions. Published in a large, almost coffee table-size, format, "The Great Outdoor Fight" is definitely a thing -- especially worthwhile for fans, of course, but more than a book of drawings, a book with a story many readers might find worth checking out.