February 8, 2012

Dark Horse Reviews: The Art of the Mass Effect Universe

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Written by: Kristin
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Title: The Art of the Mass Effect Universe
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Author: Casey Hudson, Derek Watts (introductions), Chris Hepler
Price: $39.99 (HC)
Vintage: February 8, 2012

Do you need this book? Well, here’s a litmus test for you. Are you a big Mass Effect fan? Have you pre-ordered ME3 (or otherwise plan on a day one pick up)? Do you think the environments in ME are beautiful? Does watching your favorite characters evolve from concept to what you see in the game interest you? Does a model of the Normandy sit on your bookshelf? Do you go ga-ga over vehicle and weapon designs? If you answered yes to one (but especially all) of these questions, then you should buy this book.



Does your favorite character watch over you while you work?

The only real question is, do you have the cash to drop down on it? And do you already own the limited edition games and the collector’s strategy guides? Woah woah woah, back up. If you’re already that invested, you might not want to pick up this book. Some of what you get from those investments is repeated in this book. Is it worth the money for the extra pages? Well, that’s really up to you to decide. You’ll get extra concept sketches and more art overall, so it really depends on just how much you want to see everything you could possibly see.

Here’s what you’ll find within the 184 pages of this full color hardcover book: Character concept art for all three games in the series, including many of their evolutions from ME1 to ME3. Clothing concepts for futuristic humans, as well as the alien races in the galaxy. Concept designs for each of the major alien races in the series, including detailed looks at how their facial features evolved over time to their final designs. Concept art for key locations in all three games. Weapon, vehicle, and technology concepts. Full page, color images of main characters and other artwork. It’s a lot of really beautiful stuff that any fan of the series would enjoy perusing.

A word of warning. This book comes out before ME3. It contains some small spoilers, though mostly only for those who haven’t been paying attention to news about the game. I’m one of those people, because I want to be surprised by the game, and there were a couple things in the ME3 art section that took me off guard. If you want to hold off on every little bit of information, then you should wait until you’ve played the game before you buy the art book. Otherwise, if you’re a hard core fan, and you love the look of the series, there’s really no reason not to pick this up. It’s certainly gotten me excited about the games all over again.


Review copy provided by Dark Horse Comics.


One Comment

  1. He was my favorite character too!

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