The kids sure do seem to like this Halo 4 thing that’s been happening lately. Cards on the table, I’m not much of a gamer. In fact, unless you count solitaire and Minesweeper on my college PC, I haven’t played a videogame with any regularity since The Legend of Zelda on the original NES. You know, the one with a rectangular controller, four directions, and two buttons.
What impresses me about the current state of the videogame world is the intricate detail, the expansive worlds, and the narratives which are really fully formed feats of storytelling on an epic scale. Given the options, different routes, and potential outcomes, they’re like massive, sprawling choose-your-own-adventure stories. A new book, Awakening: The Art of Halo 4, gives you a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the process that went into crafting the latest installment of the Halo mythos.
The book features a collection of concept art, rough sketches, and artists’ commentary from the folks at 343 Industries. More than just an anthology of pictures, Awakening offers a unique look at what goes into making a game like Halo 4, including the characters, vehicles, weapons, locations, and more.
Like I said earlier, I know jack about Halo. From this gallery of images, however, you can guess that things go down in space. The other thing you’ll notice about these paintings, many of which were used as a basis for creating the background, is the lush detail, and the fact that they’re stunning. Looking at these gives you an appreciation for some of what goes into the making of a modern videogame.