Saturday, December 31, 2011

Those Wacky Americans

The point of this post is basically to show off my new "shiny." This is the "American" box art for Valor Seed, drawn by my good friend, Damascus Mincemeyer.

I wanted a cover for the game that was reminiscent of the de-anime-ization of video game box art throughout the 80's and 90's. Much of the time the "US" box art was pretty bad, not even when compared to that of the Japanese original. The rest of the time, the art was usually very good. Where the latter style failed also, was in accurately depicting the game's characters. They would also frequently feature muscular, Western fantasy-like, characters, in poses that were not entirely possible. Such was the motivation for the above--and below.

In rare instances, such as with Dragon Warrior/Quest games, the US box art was just as cool or even cooler (at least with 2 and 3) than its Japanese original.

First we have Dragon Quest II's box art by legendary Akira Toriyama. Its a very good-looking cover that accurately depicts the game. Next, we have Dragon Warrior part II's box art, by Katsuya Terada (the guy who did all the cool art for Nintendo Power, as well as the Mario and Zelda comics). His rendition just rules. All of their equipped gear, btw, is taken from the official illustrations done for the game. Terada pulled a similar feat with the following:

I am having my buddy Lethus paint up my fancy new cover; I'll post it when its done.


  1. "Those Wacky Americans?" Hey, hey, hey!

    I'll have you know that I resemble that remark!


    I can't wait for the "death" of anime art for D&D. I hate that garbage. Your friend, Damascus Mincemeyer did an excellent job with that "box top."

    But, of course, that's just MY opinion. ;)

  2. What is funny about this, is that the art has come full-circle. American art is drawing inspiration from artwork inspired by American art. Its like what Hara Tetsuo said about the live-action Fist of the North Star Movie. It was something like, "I based the manga off of the film Mad-Max, and now it has all come full-circle."

    How the Paladin is interpreted in D&D is the same way. I think the Gendarme were just as cool, but they get no love from anyone.

  3. Interesting thought, isn't it?

    And you're correct about the Gendarme. The whole "I love Paladins" thing is kind of weird since, in real life, no dozen people on earth could be that pious.

    When I DM, I'm forever having my Paladin players "fall out of favor." They just can't play it straight. They always end up wanting to slaughter some "evil" person.

  4. The trick with alignment, is to associate it with which Rights you Defend, Respect, Disrespect, or Disdain. The Right to Life, the Right to Property, the Right to Freedom of Thought, the Right to Person, etc. All that is then left is establish who is classified as having these Rights. For my game it is: Beings of above-animal intelligence, who are not [at current] in a direct position to cause [or allow] harm to Righted [as covered herein] beings. Basically, potential to harm does not qualify, neither does just being evil. To not have rights, you must be either an animal (or less) and literally be in the midst of an action to cause harm under said clause. The first time your party ties up a band of brigands for the authorities [instead of leaving them in pieces], you will thank me.