BioShock artbook available for download

News: 

Irrational Games had hoped to include the BioShock: Breaking the mold concept artbook with the special edition of BioShock, but fans voted to have various other items instead such as the Big Daddy figurine and making-of DVD. So, the BioShock team made the concept art book available anyway as a free PDF download. It's 67-pages big, contains lots of disturbing images, and is available in 15MB and 75MB sizes. Grab it at the end of this news item!

Also worth noting is that the concept art book also contains comments on the creative contributions of the local Australian studio! So, pending any litigation from 2k games and death from above, I thought I'd post the comments below as a way to congratulate the efforts of these guys...

Jay Kyburz
As well as stepping in as temp lead artist, Jay really is the one who set the pace for the layout of the science area before the Little Sister Gauntlet. I think this was the first level layout that really felt right for BioShock.

Andrew James
Second temp lead artist, Andrew also modeled Shawn Robertson's design of the Security Bot. This was very early in the production, and amazingly survived all the revisions to ship in the game! Also, Andrew was the key artist who made sure the levels ran at 30-60 frames. Frankly, I think he must have sold his soul to the devil to make this happen.

Chris Chaproniere
The Ferris Wheel of Arcadia! Chris toiled for months, working on his own from the opposite side of the Pacific, he painstakingly created the most beautiful Ferris wheel for the Fort Frolic level, only to have it cut. The best piece of art not to appear in the game!

Daniel Keating
Dan labored on the awesome plants & foliage in Arcadia, battle debris, sandbags & barbed wire. But it's the amazing giant whale from the descent to Rapture that really floored me.

Brendan George
Sander Cohen! Goddamn Sander Cohen. Have you taken a look at that model? Perfectly executed in both its sculpt and texture. It roXXors. Bonus points for Cohen's flawless bald spot. (hat tip to Robb Waters for a great concept as well).

James Sharpe
All the little detailed & animated pieces of tech that dot the walls in every room all over Rapture were made by James. Also he made the best typewriter seen in any game! Seriously? I have a screenshot of it on my wall!

John Travers
The Teddy Bear. Yes, the flaming Teddy Bear from X06. It's one of those nice touches that makes Rapture such a unique place to visit. Of all the small things that made people get what BioShock was about, that Teddy Bear was the best bang for the buck!

Christian Martinez
Christian did a huge amount of work on several levels, but I think he's the first one who was able to light BioShock the way it should be lit. If you design video games for a living, you know what that means to a game.

Alex Boylan
The Dead Cat, you will find it on every dark corner of every room in Rapture. You haven?t lived until you telekinesed one of Alex's dead cats. Alex also did level architecture & lighting in Recreation.

Lorne Brooks
Rosie's Rivet Gun. It's one of those things that shouldn?t work, but does. Huge props to Lorne for taking an out there concept and making it happen from half-way around the world.

Ray Leung
The man of 1,000 screenshots. If you saw it on a website or magazine, there's a fair chance it came from Ray ( or Walt, 2K's game analyst with the golden eye! )

Ben Hutchings
Ben didn?t do just one outstanding thing. He did about a million. Some artists demand huge tasks. Others labor behind the scenes and clean up tirelessly. Without him, BioShock would be the game of a thousand visual glitches.

Comments

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  • 1. Sonic Wang - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 11:15:59 EST
    Very nice art, pity the game's animation is so terrible.
  • 2. Drewus - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 12:16:32 EST
    Terrible animation? I thought it was pretty good considering the competition. The character animation wasn't fantastic, but it was far from terrible. The hand and weapon animations however were awesome.

    The only art related gripes i had with the demo were the skinning issues on the bad dudes legs, which could have easily been fixed with an extra cut below the hip, and some of the particle effects were a little hit and miss.

    It is still however the best example of how strong art direction can really make a game look amazing. The game clearly doesn't push poly's as much as say, Gears Of War, but the art direction and overall consistency within the environment just makes it look a hell of alot prettier than Gears in my opinion.

  • 3. Sonic Wang - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 14:40:29 EST
    The hands were some of the worst view weapon animations i've seen in a professional game in a long time (some of the best were the likes of Day of Defeat, Halo 1 (NOT halo 2) and what i've seen of CoD4 look pretty good). The problem with it is the style is too cartoony. You know that scene with that Splicer vs the Big Daddy (ends with the Bid Daddy putting the splicer's face through the glass), absolutely terrible. Didn't move in a realistic way at all, to snappy and cartoony. The art style of the game is really great (which i hear was the result of one of the Australian Irrational guys going to the Boston studio to revamp their art direction), but poorly implemented in the game, with poor models, terrible animations (may be a symptom of having to use Character Studio ;P), some really naff particle effects and some bad materials. Water effects are really sweet, though.

    Still, I can't wait for it to come out.

  • 1. Drewus - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 15:09:56 EST
    I completely disagree on the hands thing. Halo 1 and DoD lack the personality that the Bioshock hands have. The animation on them may be nice (Halo 1's aren't) but they aren't as effective a storytelling tool as Bioshock's hands. If that is all you see of a character based in a heavy story driven world, you better make sure they add to the character.

    The Big Daddy sequence was a little floaty. It lacked weight during the smash through window section, but again i'd disagree on the overall cartoony feel of the animations. The art style is exaggerated art deco, realistic animations would not fit in at all.

  • 1. Sonic Wang - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 15:34:22 EST
    What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!"
    Even the bit where he stuck himself with the plamids for the first time was done poorly, it's like his arms were attached to his head, the way they followed the camera. The prerendered movies were good though, makes me wonder who did them.
    The snappy poppy animations look ridiculous, they don't even look good cartoony, like TF2's, they're just bad. Just because it's art deco, doesn't mean they have to have shite animation. If they did some rotoscoping (or mocap, even though i despise it), they could've got some more realistic looking movement, more weight, a better sense of fear from seeing something that looks real and not stupid.
  • 1. David - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:16:02 EST
    haven't played the game so no comment on the animation. but big LOLWTF to this reply

    "What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!""

    a character's animation plays a pretty big part in defining their personality - does that come as a surprise?

    PS lolol at this argument, agree to disagree

  • 1. David - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:16:02 EST
    haven't played the game so no comment on the animation. but big LOLWTF to this reply

    "What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!""

    a character's animation plays a pretty big part in defining their personality - does that come as a surprise?

    PS lolol at this argument, agree to disagree

  • 1. Sonic Wang - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 15:34:22 EST
    What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!"
    Even the bit where he stuck himself with the plamids for the first time was done poorly, it's like his arms were attached to his head, the way they followed the camera. The prerendered movies were good though, makes me wonder who did them.
    The snappy poppy animations look ridiculous, they don't even look good cartoony, like TF2's, they're just bad. Just because it's art deco, doesn't mean they have to have shite animation. If they did some rotoscoping (or mocap, even though i despise it), they could've got some more realistic looking movement, more weight, a better sense of fear from seeing something that looks real and not stupid.
  • 1. David - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:16:02 EST
    haven't played the game so no comment on the animation. but big LOLWTF to this reply

    "What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!""

    a character's animation plays a pretty big part in defining their personality - does that come as a surprise?

    PS lolol at this argument, agree to disagree

  • 1. David - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:16:02 EST
    haven't played the game so no comment on the animation. but big LOLWTF to this reply

    "What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!""

    a character's animation plays a pretty big part in defining their personality - does that come as a surprise?

    PS lolol at this argument, agree to disagree

  • 1. Drewus - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 15:09:56 EST
    I completely disagree on the hands thing. Halo 1 and DoD lack the personality that the Bioshock hands have. The animation on them may be nice (Halo 1's aren't) but they aren't as effective a storytelling tool as Bioshock's hands. If that is all you see of a character based in a heavy story driven world, you better make sure they add to the character.

    The Big Daddy sequence was a little floaty. It lacked weight during the smash through window section, but again i'd disagree on the overall cartoony feel of the animations. The art style is exaggerated art deco, realistic animations would not fit in at all.

  • 1. Sonic Wang - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 15:34:22 EST
    What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!"
    Even the bit where he stuck himself with the plamids for the first time was done poorly, it's like his arms were attached to his head, the way they followed the camera. The prerendered movies were good though, makes me wonder who did them.
    The snappy poppy animations look ridiculous, they don't even look good cartoony, like TF2's, they're just bad. Just because it's art deco, doesn't mean they have to have shite animation. If they did some rotoscoping (or mocap, even though i despise it), they could've got some more realistic looking movement, more weight, a better sense of fear from seeing something that looks real and not stupid.
  • 1. David - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:16:02 EST
    haven't played the game so no comment on the animation. but big LOLWTF to this reply

    "What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!""

    a character's animation plays a pretty big part in defining their personality - does that come as a surprise?

    PS lolol at this argument, agree to disagree

  • 1. David - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:16:02 EST
    haven't played the game so no comment on the animation. but big LOLWTF to this reply

    "What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!""

    a character's animation plays a pretty big part in defining their personality - does that come as a surprise?

    PS lolol at this argument, agree to disagree

  • 1. Sonic Wang - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 15:34:22 EST
    What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!"
    Even the bit where he stuck himself with the plamids for the first time was done poorly, it's like his arms were attached to his head, the way they followed the camera. The prerendered movies were good though, makes me wonder who did them.
    The snappy poppy animations look ridiculous, they don't even look good cartoony, like TF2's, they're just bad. Just because it's art deco, doesn't mean they have to have shite animation. If they did some rotoscoping (or mocap, even though i despise it), they could've got some more realistic looking movement, more weight, a better sense of fear from seeing something that looks real and not stupid.
  • 1. David - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:16:02 EST
    haven't played the game so no comment on the animation. but big LOLWTF to this reply

    "What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!""

    a character's animation plays a pretty big part in defining their personality - does that come as a surprise?

    PS lolol at this argument, agree to disagree

  • 1. David - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:16:02 EST
    haven't played the game so no comment on the animation. but big LOLWTF to this reply

    "What are you talking about? Personality? Story telling? WIth view weapons? That's absurd. "Oh, the way he reloaded that pistol had SO much personality, it really told the fact that if he didn't reload it soon he's as good as dead! Fantastic!""

    a character's animation plays a pretty big part in defining their personality - does that come as a surprise?

    PS lolol at this argument, agree to disagree

  • 4. Drewus - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:26:17 EST
    Hand gestures play a huge role in defining a characters personality and mood, much like eyebrows and for that matter, eyes. In first person shooters (where the character is never seen in whole) it is basically the only visual way for the character to express emotion.

    I thought this was done really well in the demo, and i'm interested to see how much further it is pushed in the final game. The plasmid section was great, infact it was the best hand animation in the demo. As for the pre-rendered movies, i'm pretty sure they were done by Plastic Wax, one of my mates did the comp on them.

    I never said art deco is an excuse for bad animation, i said it's an excuse for cartoony animation. It's consistent with the art style, and I like it (although it could be better, like i pointed out).

    You don't need to rotoscope or use mocap to get weight and emotion. You just need to be a good animator.

  • 5. Anonymous - Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:37:07 EST
    Need the PC demo to be released before I can understand what you guys are talking about :(
  • 1. Souri - Fri, 17 Aug 2007 08:47:58 EST
    Head on over to YouTube where there are plenty of ingame footage available for viewing.
  • 1. Souri - Fri, 17 Aug 2007 08:47:58 EST
    Head on over to YouTube where there are plenty of ingame footage available for viewing.
  • 6. Souri - Fri, 17 Aug 2007 15:40:15 EST
    Is anyone else planning to get BioShock via Steam?

    <a href="http://www.steampowered.com/v/index.php?area=game&AppId=7670&cc=US">http://www.steampowered.com/v/index.php?area=game&AppId=7670&cc=...

    You can pay via Paypal, and heck, for $49.95 (US), that turns out to be $64 Australian which is pretty darn nice.