Halo as Art

Geek Culture

We’re in a bit of a lull between games in the Halo franchise as Bungie moves on to its Next Big Thing and 343 Industries moves the mantle of working with the Halo universe fully onto its own shoulders. If you need a way to get your Halo fix until Halo 4 hits shelves late this year, grab yourself a copy of Halo: The Art of Building Worlds by Martin Robinson.

This is a gorgeous book filled with all sorts of fantastic art guaranteed to fill any die-hard Halo fan with a nostalgic itch to return to the original games — or to the remake of Halo: Combat Evolved that came out late last year. Robinson does a great job of explaining what we’re seeing in most of the pieces, and the team at 343 Industries allowed him to dig deep into their archives to find not only wonderful illustrations for things we eventually saw in the games, but also many alternate concepts for things that never made it onto the screen.

In this way, the book becomes not only a scrapbook of the highlights of the games, but also an exploration of how a science-fiction universe like this comes to be. What’s tossed out defines such a creation as much as what’s included, and this provides a sharper look at Halo than the games alone. Quotes from many of the artists help explain much of their motivations too, showing how the gameplay shaped the world just as much as the other way around.

Halo: The Art of Building Worlds is a sturdy, 192-page hardcover (MSRP $29.95), printed on thick paper that shows off the vibrancy of the artwork with far better resolution than the Xbox 360 can provide. Gamers and fans of great science-fiction worlds would be proud to have this on their coffee tables — or next to their controllers.

Disclaimer: Titan Books provided a review copy of this book.


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