Games

In pictures: Rare video game art to be auctioned for charity

In pictures: Rare video game a...
Raiden, a sketch by Konami's Yoji Shinkawa from Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, is among the work being auctioned for charity
Raiden, a sketch by Konami's Yoji Shinkawa from Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, is among the work being auctioned for charity
View 31 Images
Grundy Battle (top) by Kan Muftic and Ace Chemicals (bottom) by Lee Oliver, both from Rocksteady's Batman: Arkham City
1/31
Grundy Battle (top) by Kan Muftic and Ace Chemicals (bottom) by Lee Oliver, both from Rocksteady's Batman: Arkham City
Rabbit Head by Rocksteady's Lee Oliver, from Batman: Arkham City
2/31
Rabbit Head by Rocksteady's Lee Oliver, from Batman: Arkham City
Three more scenes from Batman: Arkham City by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic
3/31
Three more scenes from Batman: Arkham City by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic
Tea Party by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City
4/31
Tea Party by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City
Batman v Penguin by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City
5/31
Batman v Penguin by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City
Mad Hatter (top) by Lee Oliver and Ras by Kan Muftic, both from Rocksteady's Batman: Arkham City
6/31
Mad Hatter (top) by Lee Oliver and Ras by Kan Muftic, both from Rocksteady's Batman: Arkham City
Cain & Abel by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City
7/31
Cain & Abel by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City
Joker's Death by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City
8/31
Joker's Death by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City
Guess who? Lara Croft Portrait render by Crystal Dynamics/Visual Works/Petrol, from the forthcoming Tomb Raider reboot
9/31
Guess who? Lara Croft Portrait render by Crystal Dynamics/Visual Works/Petrol, from the forthcoming Tomb Raider reboot
Tourniquet (top) and Crossroads (bottom); renders by Crystal Dynamics/Visual Works/Petrol, from the forthcoming Tomb Raider reboot
10/31
Tourniquet (top) and Crossroads (bottom); renders by Crystal Dynamics/Visual Works/Petrol, from the forthcoming Tomb Raider reboot
Environment – Concept Artwork CGI by Robert F. Castro of Atomhawk, from The Realm
11/31
Environment – Concept Artwork CGI by Robert F. Castro of Atomhawk, from The Realm
Girl With Flute – Concept Artwork CGI by Charlie Bowater of Atomhawk, from The Realm
12/31
Girl With Flute – Concept Artwork CGI by Charlie Bowater of Atomhawk, from The Realm
Vector graphics pieces by Quartic Llama's Tom deMajo, from Moeba
13/31
Vector graphics pieces by Quartic Llama's Tom deMajo, from Moeba
Vector graphics piece by Quartic Llama's Tom deMajo, from Moeba
14/31
Vector graphics piece by Quartic Llama's Tom deMajo, from Moeba
3 Snakes sketch by Konami's Yoji Shinkawa, from Metal Gear Solid 25th Anniversary Celebreation
15/31
3 Snakes sketch by Konami's Yoji Shinkawa, from Metal Gear Solid 25th Anniversary Celebreation
Raiden, a sketch by Konami's Yoji Shinkawa from Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, is among the work being auctioned for charity
16/31
Raiden, a sketch by Konami's Yoji Shinkawa from Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, is among the work being auctioned for charity
Inside Snake CGI by Konami's Yoji Shinkawa and Kojima Productions and Team
17/31
Inside Snake CGI by Konami's Yoji Shinkawa and Kojima Productions and Team
Character Sketch (pencil) of Sonic the Hedgehog by Yuji Uekawa
18/31
Character Sketch (pencil) of Sonic the Hedgehog by Yuji Uekawa
Full colour render of Sonic by Yuji Uekawa
19/31
Full colour render of Sonic by Yuji Uekawa
Zombie concepts from PopCap Games' Plants vs Zombies are among the works to be auctioned off
20/31
Zombie concepts from PopCap Games' Plants vs Zombies are among the works to be auctioned off
Boss Minion Concept Sketches by PopCap Games, from Zuma's Revenge
21/31
Boss Minion Concept Sketches by PopCap Games, from Zuma's Revenge
Three Photoshopped pencil sketches by Team 17's Tom Glückmann, from Worms Revolution
22/31
Three Photoshopped pencil sketches by Team 17's Tom Glückmann, from Worms Revolution
Orrian Ruins by Daniel Dociu/ArenaNet, from Guild Wars 2
23/31
Orrian Ruins by Daniel Dociu/ArenaNet, from Guild Wars 2
Dunwall Street 1 Coral Draw Painter rendering by Arkane Studios, from Dishonored
24/31
Dunwall Street 1 Coral Draw Painter rendering by Arkane Studios, from Dishonored
Dunwall 03 Photoshop rendering by Arkane Studios, from Dishonored
25/31
Dunwall 03 Photoshop rendering by Arkane Studios, from Dishonored
The art style of the Dishonored character portraits is unmistakable, even as you descend the curving ramp to City Hall's lower ground floor housing the exhibition
26/31
The art style of the Dishonored character portraits is unmistakable, even as you descend the curving ramp to City Hall's lower ground floor housing the exhibition
Shard Ortho 01 – Concept Artwork by Sebastien Mitton and Viktor Antonov, a promotional image for Dishonored
27/31
Shard Ortho 01 – Concept Artwork by Sebastien Mitton and Viktor Antonov, a promotional image for Dishonored
Shard Top2 – Concept Artwork by Sebastien Mitton and Viktor Antonov, a promotional image for Dishonored
28/31
Shard Top2 – Concept Artwork by Sebastien Mitton and Viktor Antonov, a promotional image for Dishonored
Space Flora by Rudolf Kremers and Alex May, from Eufloria
29/31
Space Flora by Rudolf Kremers and Alex May, from Eufloria
The work is on display at London's City Hall
30/31
The work is on display at London's City Hall
The work is on display at London's City Hall
31/31
The work is on display at London's City Hall

An exhibition of rare, soon-to-be-auctioned video game art is on display at London's City Hall this week, as part of this month's London Games Festival. The work, which has been donated by games developers and which is to be sold off in aid of the charity SpecialEffect, includes a number of one-off canvas prints of digital renderings from recent triple-A titles such as Batman: Arkham City, Guild Wars 2 and Dishonored. Concept art and box art from older titles and mobile games are also in evidence. Having dropped in to see the work on show, here are a few of our favorite pieces.

With 2011's Batman: Arkham City, Rocksteady Studios maintained the extremely high level of production that it set two year's before with Arkham Asylum. Of the art associated with the triple-A titles on display, Arkham City's is arguably the most iconic.

Batman v Penguin by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City
Batman v Penguin by Rocksteady's Kan Muftic, from Batman: Arkham City

Though a digital painting of Lee Oliver's unsettling Donnie Darko-esque Rabbit Head is a high point of the exhibition (Arkham City fans will know precisely what I'm talking about), Kan Muftic's Batman v Penguin trumps it for me, as a piece of work you'd be happy to hang on your wall. Unlike Rabbit Head, you don't need to be familiar with the game to know what it's about.

Zombie concepts from PopCap Games' Plants vs Zombies are among the works to be auctioned off
Zombie concepts from PopCap Games' Plants vs Zombies are among the works to be auctioned off

Rather more lighthearted were the works donated by PopCap Games. These included boss concept sketches from ball-spit-em-up sequel Zuma's Revenge!, though my own favorite were these shambling funsters from Plants vs Zombies.

Vector graphics pieces by Quartic Llama's Tom deMajo, from Moeba
Vector graphics pieces by Quartic Llama's Tom deMajo, from Moeba

Without question, the monotone vector graphics renderings by Quartic Llama's Tom deMajo for the indie studio's color-matching game Moeba were among the most beautiful work on show. Now all I need to do is track down a Bada OS mobile device so that I can actually play the game.

Shard Top2 – Concept Artwork by Sebastien Mitton and Viktor Antonov, a promotional image for Dishonored
Shard Top2 – Concept Artwork by Sebastien Mitton and Viktor Antonov, a promotional image for Dishonored

Bringing the exhibition bang up to date was artwork donated by Arkane Studios from recently-released darling of the gaming press, Dishonored: a most welcome surprise. The art style of the character portraits is unmistakable, even as you descend the curving ramp to City Hall's lower ground floor housing the exhibition. Despite that, my favorite pieces from Arkane do not directly relate to the game, but are instead promotional works for its UK release, depicting a re-imagined take on London's Shard skyscraper, as if it had been airlifted from Dunwall by some vulturine, steam-powered flying machines and lowered into London.

All this is in aid of the charity SpecialEffect, which, through technology, seeks to make leisure activities such as video games more accessible to people with disabilities. The charity has devised a program it calls the Loan Library, which provides specialist gaming control equipment to enable those with severe physical disabilities to play video games.

The video below gives more of an insight into the work done by SpecialEffect. You can also take to the gallery for a more comprehensive idea of the art being put up for auction. The works will be sold on Ebay in the near future. Keep an eye on SpecialEffect's website for details.

The exhibition at London's City Hall runs all week until October 26.

Source: London Games Festival

SpecialEffect: the Gamers Charity

1 comment
Fahrenheit 451
Fabulous cause. Humbling video.