Most publisher roll out their summer events and it ties into as man other books in the line as possible. Marvel and DC are known for this type of thing where you can buy their seven issue mini-series but you need to pick up like a hundred and five other books to get the complete story. Valiant is taking a different approach. They are doing a four issue mini-series as the driving force of the 4001 A.D. event. Then there are four issues of Rai that fill in the backstory from what I've read so far. And then there will be four one-shots focused on different individual characters. So to get the whole story, you have sixteen books to buy over four months.
The second thing that is unique is all of this takes place in 4001 A.D., hence the title. It doesn't directly effect any of the other on-going or mini-series. Which means that not only do the creators of the other series not have to worry about or interrupt their storyarcs to tie into the event, but fans who don't want to read the event don't have to. If you're a Bloodshot and Ninjak fan but don't really get into X-O Manowar and Rai then you can skip 4001 A.D. all together.
That said, what I have read so far has been really good and I'll do a more in-depth review later, but I do recommend checking out the story. I'm just noting that it's nice to see a summer event that doesn't pull in every comic that a publisher puts out.
Here are some preview pages for the second issue of 4001 A.D. by Matt Kindt and Clayton Crain
4001 A.D. #2 (of 4)
Written by Matt Kindt Art by Clayton Crain Covers by Crain, Tula Lotay, Ryan Bodenheim, Philip Tan, Ryan Lee, and Ryan Sook.
The most ambitious comics event of 2016 brings war to the 41st century – with Rai leading the charge! Rai is smashing headfirst into New Japan with his team of hardened rebels including the Eternal Warrior and a giant X-O Manowar mech-armor that's been dormant for centuries! But when Father transforms New Japan into an impenetrable space dragon as a defense of last resort, what hopes will the united heroes of 4001 A.D. have of freeing the citizens of New Japan from Father's brutal reign? Will Rai have to destroy New Japan…to save it?