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Dawn: The Worlds of Final Fantasy

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The game Final Fantasy is a tale of bold heroes and heroines, breathtaking landscapes and terrifying creatures. "Dawn" collects the paintings, detailed line art, and preliminary sketches designed for the first four games. --- From book cover: There is only one Final Fantasy. Through more than two dozen wildly diverse adventures since the first game was released in 1987, the in The game Final Fantasy is a tale of bold heroes and heroines, breathtaking landscapes and terrifying creatures. "Dawn" collects the paintings, detailed line art, and preliminary sketches designed for the first four games. --- From book cover: There is only one Final Fantasy. Through more than two dozen wildly diverse adventures since the first game was released in 1987, the international influence of the game is legendary both inside the video-game industry and throughout popular culture. It is a tale of bold heroes and heroines, breath-taking landscapes and terrifying creatures. Through Final Fantasy, characters such as Luneth, Refia, Rosa Farrell, Cecil Harvey, and many others have become household names to millions of players across the globe. And for many of the games, the epic landscapes have all been brought to life through the remarkable vision of one man: Yoshitaka Amano. Now, for the first time outside Japan, Amano and Square-Enix, Inc., have permitted the artwork that inspired the designs of the Final Fantasy games to be published. In Dawn, you will see the development of the first four games through Amano's paintings, detailed line art, and preliminary sketches. If you've taken this journey before, prepare to see the world you know through new eyes. If you're embarking on this quest for the first time, brace yourself. Your life will never be the same again. There's never been a game, a world, an adventure, like Final Fantasy. Cover design by Scott Cook


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The game Final Fantasy is a tale of bold heroes and heroines, breathtaking landscapes and terrifying creatures. "Dawn" collects the paintings, detailed line art, and preliminary sketches designed for the first four games. --- From book cover: There is only one Final Fantasy. Through more than two dozen wildly diverse adventures since the first game was released in 1987, the in The game Final Fantasy is a tale of bold heroes and heroines, breathtaking landscapes and terrifying creatures. "Dawn" collects the paintings, detailed line art, and preliminary sketches designed for the first four games. --- From book cover: There is only one Final Fantasy. Through more than two dozen wildly diverse adventures since the first game was released in 1987, the international influence of the game is legendary both inside the video-game industry and throughout popular culture. It is a tale of bold heroes and heroines, breath-taking landscapes and terrifying creatures. Through Final Fantasy, characters such as Luneth, Refia, Rosa Farrell, Cecil Harvey, and many others have become household names to millions of players across the globe. And for many of the games, the epic landscapes have all been brought to life through the remarkable vision of one man: Yoshitaka Amano. Now, for the first time outside Japan, Amano and Square-Enix, Inc., have permitted the artwork that inspired the designs of the Final Fantasy games to be published. In Dawn, you will see the development of the first four games through Amano's paintings, detailed line art, and preliminary sketches. If you've taken this journey before, prepare to see the world you know through new eyes. If you're embarking on this quest for the first time, brace yourself. Your life will never be the same again. There's never been a game, a world, an adventure, like Final Fantasy. Cover design by Scott Cook

30 review for Dawn: The Worlds of Final Fantasy

  1. 4 out of 5

    Parka

    (More pictures at parkablogs.com) I'm always on the lookout for good Final Fantasy art books. It's incredibly difficult — Japanese arts especially — to differentiate game guides, screenshots books and concept art books. The first Final Fantasy art book I had was Final Fantasy IX Visual Arts Collection, which was sold away because it's basically a screenshot book with a few sketches. Yoshitaka Amano did the character designs in there too, if I remember correctly. Dawn: The Worlds of Final Fantas (More pictures at parkablogs.com) I'm always on the lookout for good Final Fantasy art books. It's incredibly difficult — Japanese arts especially — to differentiate game guides, screenshots books and concept art books. The first Final Fantasy art book I had was Final Fantasy IX Visual Arts Collection, which was sold away because it's basically a screenshot book with a few sketches. Yoshitaka Amano did the character designs in there too, if I remember correctly. Dawn: The Worlds of Final Fantasy contains the development sketches of the first four Final Fantasy games, I to IV. All the characters in this book are foreign to me since my first acquaintance with the game was Final Fantasy VII. All with the exception of the monsters and summons which are also used in later series. An index of titles is provided to identify the characters. This is a character design book. Right at the start are a few foldout pages that unfold into larger illustrations. Most of the illustrations are done in pencil and watercolour. The designs are filled with detail although they are really sketches with furry pencil lines. A few black and white designs towards the end of the book. If you're played the games before, you'll see familiar characters like Cecil Harvey, Rosa Farrell and Cid, just to name a few. There are of course lots of creatures — high level ones — like dragons, Leviathan, Ifrit, Odin, Bahamut, Chocobo, etc. It's interesting to see how the designs of these traditional legendary creatures have evolved since the first game, which was released in dot matrix. I'm really glad to see that Chocobo is now cuter in the later versions (original Chocobo in the pictures below). There are no game screenshots or highly polished splash pages in this book. All are concept art by Yoshitaka Amano. This book is recommended to character designers and game artists with reservations. Whether you like the book will depend on how much you like the style of Yoshitaka Amano.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Marina

    Not bad. Good monsters and dragon's. The artist I feel is better when he finishes a piece. The sketchy feel of his many work's don't appeal to me. Great use of color. Great design. Not bad. Good monsters and dragon's. The artist I feel is better when he finishes a piece. The sketchy feel of his many work's don't appeal to me. Great use of color. Great design.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Simon Omnes

    I first discovered Yoshitaka Amano’s artwork when Final Fantasy VI was released, but also in a guidebook for this game, which was filled with many characters or scenes from the game. The designs were unlike anything that I imagined. To me, the paintings were wild, unique, eccentric, and much more adult than the conventional character designs I found in 1990’s video games that either followed comic book or manga artistic conventions. Though there is of course a sense of caricature in his artwork, I first discovered Yoshitaka Amano’s artwork when Final Fantasy VI was released, but also in a guidebook for this game, which was filled with many characters or scenes from the game. The designs were unlike anything that I imagined. To me, the paintings were wild, unique, eccentric, and much more adult than the conventional character designs I found in 1990’s video games that either followed comic book or manga artistic conventions. Though there is of course a sense of caricature in his artwork, I felt Yoshitaka Amano’s penstroke was dramatic and told a story about each character, whether it was Celes, Locke, Terra or the devilish Kefka. In fact, each drawing clearly defined the context and personality of the characters that were there. But I was disappointed that the only drawings I could find were in this guidebook or on the Web. But when I found out that Amano had released some of his character designs, sketches, and paintings for the first four Final Fantasy in this volume, I had to purchase a copy and when I read the book, I relished each page. In each of them, I managed to spot and catch characters that I had found or played in the first four Final Fantasy. Cecil, Kain, Rydia, Cid, Yang, Golbez, and many other amazing heroes from those first four games. And I was marvelled by the large sumi-ee painting called Dawn or Reimei in Japanese. To me, this painting was a visual presentation of Yoshitaka’s imagination bubbling up before getting to work and bringing down the visual designs of the characters, monsters and architecture of the Final Fantasy worlds. Then again, I still wish that all the illustrations had been separated together into chapters identified by the games they were involved. It would have make it a little easier in identifying who went for what game, especially for some of the monsters. Still, that is just a little detail that hasn’t ruined my pleasure of reading this book, which I got to enjoy even more through the latest and richer book that Amano released in October 2012; detailing illustrations for all his Final Fantasy projects including others like Final Fantasy VII to the upper numbers. So for me, “Dawn: The Worlds of Final Fantasy” is an appetiser before the main dish.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Dean Guadagno

    Yoshitaka Amano may not sit on the same pedestal as Van Gogh or Picasso in the realm of 'household artists', but in the gaming community, his work is unmistakable. His career spans across decades of Japanese pop-culture - from Vampire Hunter D to Speed Racer to Gatchaman; you've no doubt seen it yourself, perhaps without knowing it. Most notably however, and the subject of this book, is his iconic work in one of gaming's most beloved franchises, Final Fantasy. Having worked in some capacity on n Yoshitaka Amano may not sit on the same pedestal as Van Gogh or Picasso in the realm of 'household artists', but in the gaming community, his work is unmistakable. His career spans across decades of Japanese pop-culture - from Vampire Hunter D to Speed Racer to Gatchaman; you've no doubt seen it yourself, perhaps without knowing it. Most notably however, and the subject of this book, is his iconic work in one of gaming's most beloved franchises, Final Fantasy. Having worked in some capacity on nearly every game in the series, Dawn archives his work from the franchises early entries, spanning FFI to FFIV. Now I'm about as big a Final Fantasy buff as they come, and this was personally a fantastic addition to my collection - but if you're looking for anything beyond art, you'll be disappointed. Outside of the character index, the pages are devoid of any text or explanation. As an art book, it's as pure as they come. Single page character sketches. Stunning 2-page watercolor spreads. And my personal favourite, 4-page centerfold panoramics. If you're familiar with any of the first 4 installments, then you'll no doubt enjoy flipping through the pages and recognizing your favourite characters and summons. It adds an entirely new imaginative layer to the 8-bit/16-bit sprites you're accustomed to. I highly recommend it, but if you're a hardcore art buff and love the franchise, then I suggest looking into a collection called SKY instead.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Robert Adam Gilmour

    This is the first 4 games, but not nearly as comprehensive on the same period as The Sky boxed set (which is the first 10 games). As far as I can tell, the only things not featured in The Sky are this new cover art and a wonderfully wide long piece of art that is featured for the first dozen or so pages of the book and a guide telling you who every character/creature design is. It is a bit of a puzzling release, maybe it was meant to be a more affordable alternative to The Sky but I don't think t This is the first 4 games, but not nearly as comprehensive on the same period as The Sky boxed set (which is the first 10 games). As far as I can tell, the only things not featured in The Sky are this new cover art and a wonderfully wide long piece of art that is featured for the first dozen or so pages of the book and a guide telling you who every character/creature design is. It is a bit of a puzzling release, maybe it was meant to be a more affordable alternative to The Sky but I don't think there was any follow-up volumes, so it's yet another Amano book with a ton of overlap with the others.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Wiseman

    Gorgeous images.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Eric

    This is a collection of art that helped with the making of Final Fantasy. I was pretty disappointed with the book as I thought it would talk about the history of the games and the art and talk about how the two came together. There is almost no writing at all. Each page has a couple of pictures and there is a one word description in the back for each. Some of the art is nice though.

  8. 5 out of 5

    CJ

    Amano is an artist who has gone from hate to love as I grew up. A must for fans of 8-bit and 16-bit Final Fantasy fans that are interested in art, design, or the planning phases of video games.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Morbus Iff

    Mainly an artbook; I just like this guy's work. Mainly an artbook; I just like this guy's work.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Arianna

    The artwork on pages 59, 66,67, and 99 are my favorites from the book. I wish I could create things as beautiful as this.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca Reinhardt

  12. 4 out of 5

    Holly

  13. 4 out of 5

    Nicholas Musco

  14. 4 out of 5

    Almighteh

  15. 4 out of 5

    rêveur d'art

  16. 4 out of 5

    Ita

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mario Torres

  18. 4 out of 5

    Alyssa Rodriguez

  19. 5 out of 5

    Aubrey Pietsch

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lucas

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Horrocks

  22. 5 out of 5

    Istvan Hrichak

  23. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan Bond

  24. 5 out of 5

    Courtney

  25. 5 out of 5

    Laura

  26. 5 out of 5

    Leonardo Wilhelm

  27. 5 out of 5

    Marie McLean

  28. 5 out of 5

    Maiyae

  29. 4 out of 5

    Giovanni Zamora

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jael

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