All submitted pieces appear before a judging panel, and just this past Wednesday, the AIAS announced the winning submissions for 2011. Last year's collection included artwork from games like Epic Mickey and Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions, among others. I for one am very happy to see this sort of initiative supported because the fact is, many of the folks who work on video games for a living are truly talented in more ways than one. I think the statement in this year's press release put it best: "You really see that there are great artists working across every genre of video games, and at every stage of the production process."
So merely out of interest, I decided to look further into the winning submissions for this year. Many of the pieces are very impressive, hailing from such games as Kinectimals by Frontier. As it turns out, there was one artwork in particular that actually came from a Wii-bound project. The piece titled "Paper World" is actually concept artwork for a game with the same name backed by Namco Bandai.
Illustrated by artists Say Oh and Damian Kim, the art style for this particular piece reminds me very much of the approach Broken Rules took with their puzzle-platformer And Yet It Moves. Except, of course, with a much stronger use of colour. Also, that bear looks like the main character from animated movie Open Season. And what is up with that spastic duck anyway? But in all seriousness, I do think it looks pretty good -- a nice surprise, even, looking at some of the other winning submissions.
Interestingly enough, after doing some research, I learned that Paper World hasn't even been announced yet. In fact, not only is the game nowhere close to completion, but the project may not even take off according to a source affiliated with Namco Bandai. I'll be sure to keep my eye out for any updates or hints on this project's status. But in the meantime, you can check out JPG's of the other winning submissions over on the official site.
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