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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 26 December 2006
The Art of Halo is a great, interesting resource for Halo fans that sadly doesn't overstretch itself and become the more widely recommendable book that it should be.

The Art of Halo contains a higher text to image ratio than the other artbooks I own. It seems to me that the images suffer as a result, with some sidelined and reduced to miniature size. Forgivable perhaps, so long as the text is worth the loss: Unfortunately, the text contains far too much gushing praise for Halo and Bungie, and far too little actual information about the design process, such as you might expect from a book subtitled 'Creating A Virtual World'. There is also a tendency for repetition that goes unchecked, either between team members, or image captions and the main text. The most disappointing problem with the text is its tendency towards basic information: a character or enemy's role in the games, fictional background information on locations and weapons. The kind of thing already in the game's manual and strategy guide and completely irrelevant here.

By far the poorest section is that devoted to weapons. The text here is illuminated by scarce gems of background information, and the image content is even worse, nearly exclusively composed of in-game screenshots and final model renders with concept art available for the minority, it has very little to offer that anyone familiar with the games don't already know, and non-players are unlikely to be interested in such details anyway. Thankfully, other sections are a lot stronger: the Environments chapter is particularly interesting, and contains a more acceptable amount of unfamiliar concept material. Still, my overall feeling is that the book could have contained far more conceptual designs and anecdotes, and far fewer images of in-game and finished material (there is also an inappropriately regular use of outdated E3 2003 demo content). Sometimes the layout of a page isn't perfect either, with large highly detailed images relegated to thumb-sized squiggles in favour of useless text or huge reproductions of simpler works (on page 57, for instance, we lose a beautiful looking Gravemind study to a very pixelated and far less interesting early study that for some reason takes up a quarter of a page). There is also a bias towards the (then unfinished) second Halo game, apparently symptomatic of Halo's troubled and rushed development.

The book is printed with high-quality materials but sadly lacks a hardback edition for true collect-ability. It is also not overly long at 161 pages. At its height it is a marvelous visual delight and an interesting read, but it fails to sustain this level of content and is unlikely to interest non-fans of the game. But then, there are so many Halo lovers out there that the book certainly has a wide market anyway.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 28 October 2008
I got this book yesterday, and I can tell you outright that the reviews (which shower it with praise) still make it seem worse than it actually is. I'm not saying the book is perfect though.

I would have liked to see more descriptions and creators' comments on the art. Some captions don't do the picture justice. But if you really want to admire as much Halo concept art as you can, then get this book. There's lots of art in it that you can't find on the internet. And unless you're a hardcore, salivating psycho Halo fan, there will be some stuff in the book about the Halo universe/game design/concepts/creative process that you didn't know before.

Like the previous reviewers say, if you're a true fan, get this book. I am a true fan, but I'm a cheap true fan. So at first I didn't get the book, because it was bloody expensive. But it's now on discount here on Amazon, and £10+ pounds is definitely not too much to ask for a book with full-colour art on every page. So for the thrifty ones amongst us, here's something that strikes the balance between economy and obsession.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 4 August 2010
For everyone who wants to see HiDef pictures it is maybe a little bit disappointing because at the time of Halo 1 the graphic was not so evolved like today. For those fans the Halo 3 Artbook is a better suggestion. But never the less a really nice item for every Halo Fan.
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30 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on 10 January 2005
Well, if you want to know about how Bungie came up with the masterpiece of a video game- this is your book. The amount of detail in the concept designs and the awesome imaginations that are used are out of this world. The book is more visual than descriptive, though it has a few humourous captions within it. I can sit for ages looking at this stuff- brilliant.
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on 22 July 2013
this item was sold to me as 'Condition: Used - Very Good' , however when I received the book there was the usual bumps and dents which were acceptable, however I found that a large portion of the pages had been cropped with what looked like some sort of scissors with a crimped edge and also, a good deal of the pages had been put in upside down. A GROSS NEGLECT TO MENTION THE TRUE CONDITION ON THIS BOOK WHICH WOULD BE THAT IT IS NOT IN ANY CONDITION TO SELL. Beware, items maybe in far worse condition than they are labelled.
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on 11 April 2013
This is a brilliant art book. Not only is there a lot of art, but there is a lot of description to go with it.
Great art book.
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on 26 December 2012
Great book with super illustrations. Halo fans need this book which has superb illustrations and is well worth the money
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