Kotaku Gift Guides: Video Game Art Books That Are Gorgeous

I think video game art books are a pretty glorious gift opportunity. I said as much in earlier gift guides. They're gorgeous, they're expensive — but not too expensive. They're sure to be beloved, they're sure to be treasured, particularly if you choose the right book about the right game.

Here are a few suggestions.

The Art Of The Last Of Us

If you ask the Good Reads website, this is the best video game art book out there. Naughty Dog really has some incredible artists.

And from what I'm hearing, the Uncharted art books are similarly incredible.

Half-Life 2: Raising The Bar

If you ask the internet in general, this is pretty much the greatest art book ever made and yeah, it's pretty good. Obviously folks who are into Half-Life in a big way will get more value out of it. Good thing that's pretty much everyone who is ever going to read this site.

New Eden - A Book Celebrating Great Game Environments

Someone recommended this to me. As you might have guessed from the title, it's a celebration of some of gaming's greatest environments. It's gloriously designed and finished. It's beautiful.

Finding copy of this thing will be difficult. If you do, please let me know where you found it!

Hyrule Historia

This is more of an illustrated history of Zelda, which is totally fine by me. It still upsets me that my wife hasn't bought me this book.


The Art Of Journey

So this is another book I totally want. Pretty sure it's a safe bet for present of the year for anyone who played this wonderful game.

On another note. Cannot wait for this game to be re-released for the PlayStation 4.

Dark Souls: Design Works

For Dark Souls fans, this book is spectacular. Not only is it full of gorgeous art, it's one of the few art books that feels like an insight into the process of the art design.

There's also an incredible (and long) interview with Miyazaki, the game's creator.


    Holy shit. Somebody give me The Art Of Journey for Christmas. Thanks.

    I haven't even unwrapped my Hyrule Historia, but I'd be totally down for a book covering the Metroid series.

      ..... I have three copies.

      One standard edition sealed, one collector's edition sealed, and another standard one for reading purposes :P

        I didn't even know there was more than one version.

        What's the deal with the collector's one?

          I think it just has a few extra pages with some Zelda manga on it.


          That's the listing for the book on the Dark Horse website. The picture is the cover of the book except the design on the actual book is in gold IIRC.

    I'd recommend getting The Sky: The Art of Final Fantasy. 3 hard cover books that cover FFI-FFX.

      Good choice, I'm surprised this wasn't on the list.

      For the uniformed, Even if you don't like Amano's art, it's easily the largest set of video game art you can buy in one set. It's definitely one of those books that people will associate more with art moreso than a video game. Genuinely amazing stuff.

      Last edited 05/12/14 5:16 pm

        Serrels + RPG = Universal implosion :p

    Bought Hyrule Historia. A genuinely interesting read as well as fantastic art and visuals. Everything from history, development stories and development art as well as pieces on every character you encounter and environments. Love it.

    The HL2 book would be almost impossible to get...they're all 'used' and it looks like the majority only ship domestically to US states. Those sellers who ship internationally; the book is around $200 USD....yikes.

    Soooo this is a list of all the art books you want for Christmas Mark? ;)

    Do not forget the brilliantly done arc sys art books done by daisuke ishawatari , whose illustrations are so beautifully done

      Ooh, like BlazBlue and Guilty Gear ones? I might need to pick some up

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