Final Fantasy Ultimania Archive Volume 1 (英語) ハードカバー – 2018/7/24
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An astonishing journey through the creation of the seminal role playing epic, officially available in English for the first time ever! This holy grail of Final Fantasy fandom is packed full of original concept art, process pieces, and notes from the original artists and designers chronicling the creation of these timeless games.
Dark Horse and Square Enix are thrilled to offer the first of three volumes celebrating the entrancing lore and exciting development of the initial six entries into the Final Fantasy saga. Totaling over three-hundred pages and collected in a high-quality hard-cover binding, Final Fantasy Ultimania Archive Volume 1 remains faithful to its original Japanese source material while simultaneously offering unparalleled accessibility for Western readers. No Final Fantasy collection is complete without this beautiful tome of art, lore, and history.
HOWEVER, please be cautious when purchasing books from Amazon. Mine was poorly packaged (just sitting in a box without bubble wrap), so the entire bottom right corner is bent and wrinkled. The damage went beyond the cover, too, so every page has 2 inches of wrinkles, folds, and scuffs. I'll get over it but, as a fan that has been waiting years for the Ultimania series to reach the states, it's heartbreaking to have my first copy damaged upon arrival.
Note: many characters, monsters, and locations are shown with Japanese language (Katakana or Hiragana most often - sometimes Kanji) with a Romaji translation (such as Kokaturisu for Cockatrice) and a final English translation. Note that much of this book is based off multiple versions of the games - often the PSP / PS1 versions for 1, 2, 4, 5 and DS for 3. Just a note because translations are different for each version. Also some of the sprites shown in character models are from later releases, not original. But it is certainly forgivable since they often show the sprites for multiple versions.
I am just pawing through it non-stop. I feel like a kid when I got the first Final Fantasy and literally wore out the map/monster chart that was included!
there has been too many complains about the Shipping of this product and I don't know why it keeps happening again and again and no one doesn't want to do anything about, it's like they see our comments and choosing not to do anything, so since they don't want to listen i just lower the score to most negative until they will have no other choice to listen, and finally start wrapping their products correctly.
This book coves covers final fantasy 1-6 in various sections. The various sections for all the final fantasy games are listed as follows :
2. Final Fantasy (Insert number here) Story
6. Extra Content - goes into different sub catagories and varies from final fantasy to final fantasy.
7. Last section is - Final Fantasy (Insert number here) Memories.
I have to say I really like this book a lot, but then again It's a dark horse bool publication of course it's going to be good. The pages are THICKKK. When I thought they were glued together or something by accident but nope, these pages are just really that thick. The hardcover is nice, although best to keep it clean since it's mostly all white.
My favorite section is probably the character section. Not only does it list which character is conected to who in some way as well as the villians but also it shows Yoshitaka Amano complicated and beautiful artwork bellow each of the characters pixilated forms. It really gives you a perspective in how Amanos art work was translated into these sprites. Even though the section on art is nothing special seeing as I own "The Sky The Art Of Final Fantasy Slipcase Edition" which I recommend btw, It is still no less nice to see his work here too. I do think we get to see more of his monster desgins here though, but also the art covers for each variation of the game like from the Famicon to Android to PlayStation. It also shows the different logos that were in other platforms/handhelds or media devices. Really cool stuff here.
The story section is OK, doesn't really go indepth about it though. Nice but overall just an OK section.
The world section is pretty cool, showing the entire map of each game. The final fantasy 1 map is super basic, with some green here, dots of green for bushes, some yellow there, etc. Overall a neat little section.
The monster section does the same thing with the characters section in the sense that it shows you Yoshitaka Amano fantasic drawings along side the pixel forms they take in the games. Incredibly fascinating if I do say so myself.
The extra content section is were you see the technical side of what went to making into these games like the sprite data, the map, color list and so on and so forth. This section varies from final fantasy to final fantasy but it gets really technical about it, really cool.
The final section the memories section is just that, memories of the game with random images and quotes of the game.
Final Verdict - 10 out of 10 I did check in the back of the book for a final section called creators voices which are short interviews with the grand masters of the final fantasy series itself and how they feel about their work. Really nice. Overall this is a well done book by dark horse books, yet another fantastic release guys. I highly recommend buying this book regardless if your a collector or not.
My recommendations? Pre-order Volume 2 of The Final Fantasy Ultimania Archive, it comes out in december but still. As well as Pre-Order any of the upcomimg dark horse books, they are all really good regardless if you played the games or not.
The art and screen shots bring back memories of playing these games over the past 30 years. But that’s not all this book has. It also includes great design information as well as plot/scenario outlines.
This book is well worth the money to any fan of the early Final Fantasy games.
My only complaint is that the book was shipped without any protective material in the box (only shrink wrap), and the bottom of my copy has some dents in the cover. Sad for such a fine conversation piece.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED FOR FANS OF THE FIRST SIX FINAL FANTASY JRPGs.