- Paperback: 288 pages
- Publisher: Udon Entertainment; 01 edition (10 Jun. 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1897376022
- ISBN-13: 978-1897376027
- Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 2 x 29.5 cm
- Average Customer Review: 49 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 277,879 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Okami Official Complete Works Paperback – 10 Jun 2008
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Okami is one of the newest Capcom action games boasting a very unique art style, heavily inspired by Japanese watercolor painting. "The Okami Official Complete Works" art book will take you behind the scenes to the amazing artwork that defines the wonderful world of this beautiful video game! The 288 full color pages are filled with character and location designs, concept sketches and production notes from the creators giving you an in-depth look at the fantasy world of Okami! This is a truly inspiring book, translated into English for the first time!
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Okami is easily my favourite game, and I am definitely the sort to snap up Okami merchandise whenever I see it. On just browsing other concept art books, I came across this one and didn't take long to debate it. It's a good price for a book that is packed with content. There's details about all the characters in that, the music sheets for the soundtrack, the enemies, the weapons, ... I'm so glad I got this when I could, and I don't think I'd regret it for a second. Not to mention the cover is gorgeous.
~ This book which wonderfully detailed cover surrounds, talks about nearly every single aspect of the game you could think about, with big, very detailed pages, full of art and interesting facts. It includes many of the authors thoughts about the game, the characters and the places, such as about what they were thinking about doing in the past and what made them opt for other options instead, and includes many scenarious and characters that didn't make it to the final stages. It also refers to the legends and mithology the team studied to make the game.
~ There are even other things that this book covers besides the game design and art, such as representations of the past history before the game, comics made during development, notes with songs to play while you read (if you own the Okami Original Soundtrack), among other unexpected surprises!
~ As to the overall quality of the book, the ink is of very good quality and the pages are fully printed to the last corner and flawless. The only minor issues I can point to this book are that the pages get curvy easily due to air moisture (specially if you live near the sea), and that opening the book completely while reading may cause it to fold on the side, which isn't a very big problem since the cover art resambles an old and special book, and the folding actually contributes to a more realistic feeling to that idea (and gives you the handsome bonus that this book might just never look bad for many decades to come!).
~ If you, like me and many others, have fallen in love with the wonderful work of art that Okami is, and just can't get enough of it, I couldn't recommend this book more! It is a great investiment which will leave you entertained for many hours, and will never let you forget about this utterly astonishing game that everyone should play at least once in their lives, no matter how many years have passed! As a side-note, make sure that you finish Okami before you start reading this book, otherwise it will spoil the ending and other nice stuff intended for you to discover by playing it.
But as for the book itself, it's brilliant. Seeing all the art up close and in print is great, and it feels right to see in in an analogue setting, instead of on a TV screen. Earlier parts of the book aren't that insightful though. There's a lot of gorgeous art, including a full version of the bestiary, but it doesn't really tell you anything that the game doesn't already. Most of it is just blurbs describing characters and what not, much of it lifted directly from the game.
Later in the book when you get to concept work things get a lot more interesting though. There's some cool insight in to unused ideas from development, and what influenced character designs. There's a lot of very surprising stuff in there. Apart from just showing character concepts and ideas that were eventually cut, it shows a lot of depth behind how characters were conceived, with some explanations that are sure to raise an eyebrow. It also shows a lot of very early concept work, long before the game took a shape anything like the final product. It's all really fascinating, and even brings out a chuckle or two in some places.
Overall it's a gorgeous and brilliantly presented piece of work, that has clearly had a lot of love put in to it. If Okami has captivated you like it has many others who have played it, then this book will surely enthral you. Have no hesitation in picking it up!
Everything from sketches, concepts, painted backgrounds, character designs, boss showcases, different tales on the different game areas, you name it, it's in this book.
The only gripe one could have with it, is perhaps that this could have easily deserved to be a hardcover so it could be preserved better.
But other than that it's an amazing purchase for anyone who both is a fan of the game and loves ancient japanese illustration. Watercolour paintings, wood-carving paintings, Clover Studio took inspiration from those beautiful techniques and made something truly special.
This game is truly one of the gems of it's time and this book is great proof of that very fact.
Would definitely recommend to everyone I know, I'm going to go to my Art College course and show everyone there!
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