The Otaku’s Study End of Year Awards // English Localized Artbook of the Year 2013 – Persona 4 Arena: Official Design Works
Today has been another big year for Udon Entertainment, with a number of artbook releases made throughout the year for a variety of different anime and video game franchises – in addition to their commitment to a variety of manga and comic series including Disgaea, Street Fighter and more. Given they are pretty much the only publisher of English localized artbooks, it was pretty evident that Udon Entertainment would walk away with my English Localized Artbook of the Year 2013. But the question of what….
Going through all the titles I have currently reviewed and plan to review in the next couple of weeks – I have determined that their November 2013 release of Persona 4 Arena: Official Design Works is the one that has walked away with the crown this year. As with the other Persona design compendiums they localized for Persona 3 and Persona 4, this release features a selection of artwork and insight into the design process of the game – leaning a lot more towards the design.
While its lack of artwork may not appeal to some, the plentiful supply of finalized and concept artwork in this release more than makes up for the shortfall – and offered a greater insight into the design process than either of the earlier “Official Design Works” releases. Well deserving of my award for “English Localized Artbook of the Year 2013″.
Runner Up for 2013: R.O.D Read or Die Official Archive
This was a very surprising acquisition made by Udon Entertainment which was eventually released in January 2013. It featured artwork and designs from the OVA and TV anime series which were interesting, however didn’t hit the mark that Persona 4 Arena: Official Design Works did.
This is the second year that I have done my “Book of the Year” award, with last year the title going to No Starch Press’ entertaining educational book Wonderful Life with the Elements – The Periodic Table Personified. Unlike last year as I have acquired quite a few Japanese artbooks, I will be splitting this award up into “English Localized Artbook of the Year 2013″ as shown above and “Japanese Artbook of the Year 2013″. I am uncertain if this will be the case in future years however.