Top 10 Best Game Art Books Every Game Designer Must Have

Best Game Art Books
The cursed city of Yharnam in Bloodborne provides us not only with a fascinating story, but also with numerous outstanding concept arts.

10. Shovel Knight: Official Design Works

Shovel Knight: Official Design is a fun and different type of game art book. While most game art books offer an insight into the game developer's mind, this book will give you a fun experience looking through some of the pages, that are clearly not concept images. Do not be mistaken though, the book does open the door into the development of Shovel Knight, however, it also has a few fun artworks to show the reader a bit more into the world of shovel knight. I recommend this book solely because it’s a different approach to the usual game art book and can offer a new take on things. The reader does not only see the physical development process but also has a window into the imaginative process. This is something that can often be hard to find in any media, making this a unique and important read.

9. Art & Design of Final Fantasy XV

Art & Design of Final Fantasy XV is one of the most visually appealing books I have ever had the pleasure of looking over. Ever page has stunning artwork, unique designs, and amazing visuals. A game artist should all look this book over at least once, in order to see how diverse a game can really be. It offers little in the development process but makes up for it in the pure art that is to be found on every page. A game artist should take note of the use of colors, and how the developers use them in order to create stunning details.

8. Bloodborne Official Artworks

This game art book comes from one of my favorite franchise’s. Bloodborne Official Artworks offers a dark and gritty tone, along with highly detailed characters and environments. It is important to see how far modern games can push realism, and this book is a perfect example of that. It is a great look for anyone, like myself, who loves high detailed models and concept art. It doesn't have much of a variety as the whole book give off a darker theme, but the level detail is too important not to note. A game artist should look it over carefully to get a full grasp on what developers will looking for as far as quality goes.

7. The Art of Assassin's Creed Origins

The  Art of Assassin’s Creed Origins has a lot to offer, in both artwork and education. The book is full of highly detailed character designs, and more important outstanding architecture. I highly  recommend this one to anyone looking into become an environmental artist, there really is a lot that they can take from this book. The book has some really great examples of environmental art and small segments on their process, giving the reader a lot of valuable knowledge. There's so much to learn from this one book, it really is a must-have.   

6.The Legend of Zelda: Art & Artifacts

Now, this is a really interesting book. The Legend of Zelda: Art & Artifacts is a game art book that does not come around often. The book goes over every Zelda game to ever come out, even going over that Zelda cartoon that no knows about. It’s a really fun look, but more importantly, it gives the evolutionary steps, that have been made in the gaming industry. A game artist can really get an idea of game trends over the last 30 years, because Zelda has been around since the beginning of the game industry, and is still around and strong today. There are many franchise books like this one, but none of them go this far back, making the knowledge it contains very rare.

5. The Art of Overwatch

The Art of Overwatch does something that I wish more game art books did, and that is it shows a little bit of personality. Each character is often accompanied by an illustrates that has a little more of the character’s inner workings. This is always a good thing because the reader can see a little more on the thought process behind the character, this makes the design choices that were made easier to see and understand. Another really good thing about this book is that it perfectly demonstrates that you can have a stylized character without sacrificing detail. All the characters, all though maybe cartoonish, have a lot of detail, and Game artist should really take note.

4. The World of the Witcher

The World of The Witcher has one of the most varieties of characters and environments out there. The book is written more for lore and the fan base than actual development, however, the diversity in this book is too good to pass up. If you want to see want to should strive for, as a game artist, look no further. All the works in this book are highly detailed, and each page is different from the last. Any game artist will agree with me, professional or not, that you can’t be a one trick pony in the game industry. This book easily demonstrated that developers will demand all sort of different things, that you as a game artist will need to fulfill.

3. The Art of Naughty Dog

There are many game art books that go over a franchise, but as far as I know, there are no game art books that go over a studio’s history. The Art of Naughty Dog goes over the whole history of the studio, even having statements from the founders of Naughty Dog. I can’t express how valuable a book like this is, having insight from one of the world's top studios is something that almost never comes around. Being able to see where the company started with, to what they have known, is knowledge I think anyone wanting to get into the industry would find valuable. Seeing Naughty Dog’s evolution can really be an eye opener, I would recommend this book to all game artist.

2. The Art of God of War

The Art of God of War has great highly detailed characters and environments. The book also does something every game artist will love, it section the book based on stages of the development of God of War. Having the game almost unfold right in front you, as though it were being made right before your very eyes. Seeing this process is an amazing experience, that not many other books can offer. The book offers you the mind of the developers, you can see the decisions that were made, and even see things that got cut out from the game. It’s a worth wild experience to look over this a few times, and I recommend this to a future game artist.

1. The Art of Horizon Zero Dawn

This is easily my favorite game art book of all time. The Art of Horizon Zero Dawn is visually stunning, highly detailed, and extremely unique. The character design in this book is some of the best I have ever seen. I can’t get enough of this book, from how the unique the characters are to how visually appealing it all is. The characters in this book are so beautiful, and original, it makes me fall in love with it every time I look at. If you love game art or want to see good game art, this is best.

You may also be interested in:

More on this topic:

Eve has been a gamer ever since she got her first PC back in the year of 2000 and loves a good strategy game on a rainy day.
Gamer Since: 2000
Favorite Genre: RTS
Currently Playing: Xcom 2
Top 3 Favorite Games:Prison Architect, Tropico 5, Sid Meier's Civilization V

More Top Stories