Thursday, May 19, 2011

Great box art of 2011 is about bold simplicity.

It was this awesome art for Resistance 3, revealed yesterday, that got me thinking on this. Created by British artist Olly Moss, the now-iconic four-eyed, fanged skull with the New York skyline within its ragged teeth actually does more to put me in R3's corner than all the trailers I've seen thus far.

Now, not every bit of great box art this year is so spartan, but the ones that really stand out invariably are. Take Brink, for example. My interest in Brink was essentially on a consistent down slope since I first heard about it, but even I must admit, this is some badass box art.

This fall's Batman: Arkham Asylum is nearly as stark as Resistance 3's - just a symbol, and the name.

Perhaps this is all a result of the Dead Space 2 art. Released on January 25th, it set the stage for the simple, stylish fare to follow.

Dead Space 2's art capitalizes on the love of gamers for Isaac's trademark glare of three glowing lines - it succeeds because we already associate so much with those three sicky-blue lines. The cover art for The Darkness 2 doesn't rely on such a crutch - it's just badass.

You pick up this game case in the store, you look at it. You have no idea what this game is about. But look at that box art. Whatever it is, admit it - you want it. Creepy/gothic/gorgeous.

I was going to include Dragon Age II's bold offering, but as I compare it to the others shown here - while it does share many qualities - it just doesn't stack up. It's a fine line between bold and busy - and Dragon Age II's art can't quite decide which it's trying to be.

Catherine's art, on the other hand, takes a page from the Hannibal Lecter school of decorating - that too much decoration is too much, but way too much can be just enough - and remains a bold, memorable design.

I'll be curious to see what we'll be getting for stuff like Uncharted 2, Skyrim and Deus Ex... hey wait, Deus Ex is out in like three months, maybe its art's been revealed already... aha!

It's a bit of both, isn't it? At first you get the simple design of a man with a gun, dark against the light background - but if you look closer, each of those shards contains an image from the game. Very nice - though I'm not sure I'd put it in a "best box art" category.

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