Submitted by Spectator1 476d ago | opinion piece

Best Art Direction of 2013

gamReview's Joseph Trotter: "Anybody notice an award missing from our usual Game of the Year categories? Like Charles I and his head, Graphics Technology has been cut off from the body of categories because it had fallen foul of the gamrReview Rump Parliament. Rather than glorifying the sheer power of the gaming machine as we enter a generation where technical prowess is a given, we would prefer to celebrate the way this technology is used by the talented artists and directors who permeate the industry. If gaming is ever to convince the wider world that there is indeed artistic credibility within this media form, then it could do worse than put forward some of 2013's wonderful examples." (Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, PC, PS Vita, PS3, Rayman Legends, Tearaway, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD, Wii U, Xbox 360)

BlackWolf  +   476d ago
Great choices. All the titles are gorgeous in their art direction. And congrats to the winner (won't spoil it, worry not).
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iamnsuperman  +   476d ago
I will, kind of, I think Tearaway should have got it. It's the only game where the art direction impacts the game in a meaningful way. The others are good but I think Tearaway raised the bar
Realplaya  +   476d ago
I think they should have did Mario 3D world or Pikmen.
wonderfulmonkeyman  +   476d ago
Glad that game won; its probably one of the best platformers in the past couple of years, and the art style only helped it along.
Its a shame that it didn't get better sales by going multiplatform, though...
Amigaengine  +   476d ago
All of them could have won and I would be satisfied. Nice list and fantastic games !
TheLastGuardian  +   475d ago
Guacamelee deserves a nomination.
Xof  +   475d ago
The game that really impressed me the most visually last year ended up being Muramasa Rebirth, on the Vita. Though Wind Waker and Rayman were also quite inspired, I'm not entirely sure Wind Waker's art direction is valid for the 2013 year (actually, I'm sure it's not), and the art direction in Rayman doesn't really count either, as that style was introduced in 2011's Rayman Origins.

Which leaves only Ni no Kuni, which I'll admit to being technically very well executed, but I didn't care for the art design at all, personally. To me, the character design in particular felt too bland, simplistic, and uninspired.

But, still, compared to the piss-poor art direction most games take, every single title mentioned in the article and the comments field (thus far) is well-worth every ounce of praise.
deafdani  +   475d ago
While I perfectly understand your points, I wanted to note that Muramasa can't be considered for its art direction, either, if we're going by your criteria (which I share for the most part). That's because Muramasa was already released for the Wii years ago.

I completely agree with you on Wind Waker. That game actually has my favorite art style of all time, but you're right, that art style was conceived about 10 years ago or more.

However, having played both Rayman Origins (own it) and spent a while with Legends' challenge apps, I can confidently tell you that Legends, although very similar in style to Origins, turned the art up quote a few notches. It's even more polished than Origins visually, and blends 3D elements with a style that makes it appear sort of 2D-ish, something that Origins didn't have, so I think Legends actually deserves the nomination.

I haven't played Ni No Kuni nor Tearaway (don't like turn based combat and I don't own a Vita), but both games look gorgeous to me judging by trailers. I think both are at least deserving of nominations.

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