Archive for the Artwork Category

Ys II: Completed! Thoughts

Posted in Artwork, Best / Worst, Blog, Games, Ys on September 20, 2017 by slateman

Ys Books I & II remains among my favorite games ever. That’s partly tied to the time of my life, about 13. However it is also tied to its innovation, its technological prowess (CD quality!) and its music, which is still remarkable. But now having finished the remake of Ys III and my save game but a few hours into Ys II, it was time to complete this retelling. And now that I’m done, I realize…It’s dated.

The game was still great, with the familiar faces of Feena and Reah bringing a smile to mine. However, its source material is almost 30 years old and it shows. The labyrinthine level layout was needed with limitations of the ’80s. Now it just feels empty and repetitive. A guide helped me through this journey and I’ve no shame in that. In addition, Felghana’s remade soundtrack may very well be superior to the PSP iteration of Ys I & II. In fact, the former may be the best the series has ever seen.

As Ys VIII hits shelves this week, my return to Eresia will have to wait. Until then, here are some snapshots from the last hour or so of Ys II – spoilers, quite obviously!!!

Ys II: Hello Zalem!

Posted in Artwork, Best / Worst, Blog, Games, Ys on September 17, 2017 by slateman

This is a totally unnecessary post – but I found it humorous. Having gone back to beat The Oath In Felghana, I figured why not polish off Ys II as well. I abandoned that title at around the same time as Felghana. Well, once you land in Ramia village, you can go upgrade your equipment by meeting Zalem. Well, turns out if you talk to her before trying to do any business, then give her three herbs, then visit her bed, you’ll be given an option to join her there. It’s entirely juvenile and silly, and I certainly don’t recall this option back in the TurboCD days!!! In any event, here’s some visual evidence. Warm and sinful indeed.

Horizon: Zero Dawn – Just Stunning

Posted in Artwork, Game Art, Games with tags on August 14, 2017 by slateman

I quite liked posting those Final Fantasy XII snapshots and I recalled that this year’s GotY contender, Horizon: Zero Dawn was absolutely gorgeous to look at as well. Therefore, I dug through my snapshots from this spring and decided to post some of my favorites. Potential spoilers here! Man, the game’s photo mode is spectacular. Enjoy!

Final Fantasy XII: Enjoying The Beauty

Posted in Artwork, Game Art, Games with tags on August 13, 2017 by slateman

It’s been a few weeks and my journey through Ivalice is hardly complete. At more than 40 hours, I’d wager I’m maybe halfway through. But while my recent ventures have been way off the story’s path, the tale itself is an epic and grand one, much as one might expect from any good FF. The trusty screenshot button is one of my favorite additions to this generation of gaming and so I thought I’d share some of the stunning vistas, group shots (I love these) and unique art style that is FFXII. I’m absolutely loving it. Here you go.

Some New SF Sprites

Posted in Artwork, Blog, Game Art, Games, Street Fighter on January 14, 2017 by slateman

In celebration of Violent Ken’s appearance in the upcoming Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers and in celebration of the original release of World Warriors a lifetime ago, I’ve ripped some new animations. The first is just a pair of Violent Ken animations from SNK Vs. Capcom: Chaos from 2003. The second is a full set of the 8 World Warriors from the original SFII. No real reason otherwise. Just to do it, I suppose. Let’s see!




Astonishing X-Men: Excellent!

Posted in Artwork, Blog, Books with tags on December 3, 2016 by slateman

tmp_13683-51gm7_awvzl-_sy344_bo1_204_203_200_-1486351120I stopped reading comics probably about 15 years ago. To be honest, after Joe Madureira, almost every other artist was just a let-down. I wouldn’t say I outgrew comics but I did just simply stop reading. And, I sold almost my entire collection this past spring while cleaning house to prep for my move. Sure, I saved all my Battle Chasers and Street Fighter comics, but all my beloved X-Men comics went.

And now, without home broadband (how primitive!) I’ve been frequenting the local library often. It’s the most spectacular library I’ve ever been to! I’ve been able to rent games like Diablo III and obviously the book collection is vast. However, there is an entire room dedicated to games, comics and the like. There are three TVs with consoles hooked up and, unsurprisingly, people gather to play football games every day. But I saw a huge hardcover collection of Astonishing X-Men and decided to take a peek. The art was pretty cool. It’s written by Josh Whedon. The team is a cool one (Beast, Emma Frost, Wolverine, Shadowcat and Cyclops (and later Colossus)). And as I started going through it, it felt a bit more mature. Not that comics are reserved for the young, but it was emotionally more mature. The story felt real and practical despite the supernatural. The urgency didn’t feel forced. The strained relationships between Logan and Scott, Emma and Kitty were as if I’d stepped right back into an old, yet oh-so-familiar pair of shoes. It was darker but still honored the 50-year tradition of my favorite heroes. And…really…I never read much outside of the X-Men. Never liked any DC comics…not Batman or Superman or anyone. Never liked Spider-Man, The Hulk or The Avengers, despite the recent successes of the movies. Nope, it was always just the X-Men and halfway through this monster of a book, I’m totally sold. My love for Stan Lee’s creation never waned. While I certainly won’t be returning to buying books weekly, this has been a fun and compelling read and one that, forgive me, astonished me. I truly have enjoyed reading this as much as I have looking at it. And one major reason is its minimalism. Every page is not riddled with bubbles of conversation. Just as often things are left unsaid which genuinely makes them feel more powerful. The comic medium is art in itself and John Cassaday has done a remarkable job. I’d buy this book…if it weren’t like $120.

Diablo III: Beat Diablo

Posted in Artwork, Blog, Games on November 27, 2016 by slateman

wallpaper031-1920x1080I started playing Diablo III back in 2014 but never really got motivated once Act 1 ended. I was hooked and then just lost interest. However, the local library here in Gothenburg has a decent collection of games and so with Reaper Of Souls on the PS4, I figured I’d try again. This game is great!

A friend of mine hates it, citing other, superior titles. However, I’ve no real experience outside of Torchlight and Torchlight II and I’m having fun! After battling through the first four acts and defeating Diablo, I was treated to the intro to the DLC expansion. BRUTAL! I’m totally digging this! I’ve upped the difficulty again and I fear I may have to drop it back, but for now, this is a spectacular game! With no broadband at home, I’m still waiting to get the patches that have come since. I’d love to get the art books for both the base game and for RoS. This is right up my alley.

Cyberbots: Z-Gouki

Posted in Artwork, Game Art, Games, Street Fighter on August 22, 2016 by slateman

I saw that this weekend’s Flash Sale on the PSN had Cyberbots for the PS1. I never loved this game, but about a year ago (Aug 29th, to be exact) I had the urge to see Z-Gouki in action. Now he was never available in the arcade version and I was tempted to buy the PSN game. However ePSXe works wonders and I was able to capture him there! It required a lot of cleaning up, to be honest, but while I’m capturing images for a future SFGalleries update, I figured I’d share the only known sprites of Z-Gouki that I know of. It’s his standing pose. Doing a full animation was way too much work for my tastes so here is a pair of GIFs for you all. Kinda cool IMO.

SFV Snapshots

Posted in Artwork, Best / Worst, Blog, Games, Street Fighter on July 9, 2016 by slateman

Ibuki’s arrival spawned a renewed interest in SFV and the story mode was really quite enjoyable. I took some snaps, figured I’d share with you all. It starts with my silver trophy for 100 wins. Kinda proud of that one. Of course, I have more than 200 losses to go with that!!! The rest are just misc. shots I liked. Enjoy!!!

100th Win!  (More than 200 losses...)

100th Win!

Classic Matchup!

Classic Matchup!

Story Mode's Ending

Story Mode’s Ending

Love SFV's style

Love SFV’s style

Glorious

Glorious

A handshake

A handshake

Cammy deliberating

Cammy deliberating

Goofy Duo

Goofy Duo

Uncharted 4: Landscapes

Posted in Artwork, Best / Worst, Games, Uncharted on May 21, 2016 by slateman

I’m not quite done with Uncharted 4 yet, but I’m impressed and enthralled upon reaching each new locale. While I wait for the credits to roll before issuing a verdict (hint: it’ll be good), I figured I’d share some photos. The in-game photo mode is rather amazing and I’ve found myself more than once just gazing on the landscapes and views offered up. Naughty Dog has crafted another masterpiece, even if the gaming tropes still remain. The age-old “I don’t want to beat it yet” adage remains but I fully expect to run through this again, much as I did with the prior 3 titles. For now, here are some gorgeous views from the final entry into Nathan Drake’s adventure.

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Uncharted 4_ A Thief’s End™_20160517060447

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