With only a week left until The Game Awards, the tension and hype are building. I wanted to get in on the awarding action, but I’ve been pretty busy this year being hardstuck silver in League of Legends; so I didn’t really have time to play many other games.
With a lack of gameplay hours logged in 2022, I decided to make my own awards to share opinions on this year’s games without having to actually play them. It’s genius.
So, dear PowerUp! reader, I present to you, the Box Art of the Year Awards! BAOTY for short. In this article, I’ll guide you through some of the prettiest, funniest and weirdest video game box art of 2022.
Best anime art
It would be totally out of character for my article if I didn’t mention anime somewhere. Games and anime are constantly influencing each other in a multitude of ways. There are games based on anime, and anime based on games, and the one thing they always have in common is the art style.
Some common traits of anime art styles include; exaggerated body parts and facial features; semi-realism; and highly-saturated colours.
Notable entries in the ‘Best Anime Art’ category are:
AI: THE SOMNIUM FILES Nirvana Initiative
A background with a vaporwave glitch theme pairs with long-haired anime girls to give this box art a futuristic feel.
Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure: All-Star Battle R
The box art for this masterpiece features all of the hotties in the Joestar family and a nice little rainbow in the background. Classic.
…and the winner of the BAOTY Award for ‘Best Anime Art’ is:
The box art for Digimon Survive shows us that simplicity is best when it comes to anime art. The art has traces of both traditional and digital mediums; watercolour painting, digital textures, and clean lines. You can really feel the visual novel theme they were going for with this one.
Aesthetics are subjective, but ~aesthetic~ is a vibe. This kind of video game box art makes you think “oh, I could use this as my phone lock screen and still be cool”.
Notable entries in the ‘Most Aesthetic’ category are:
There are different kinds of aesthetics, but the box art for Ghostwire Tokyo is giving neon, cyberpunk and Japanese street photography. It appeals to people who make vaporwave their whole personality.
Dark and moody is what comes to mind when looking at the box art for basically any Square Enix game, but Triangle Strategy understood the assignment. A battlefield, dark clouds, a lone figure and crows give this art an edgy feel.
…and the winner of the BAOTY Award for ‘Most Aesthetic’ is:
Gorgeous, gorgeous games have box art with a cartoon cyberpunk aesthetic. The colours, the line art and the typeface all come together to create an image that makes me want to play the game — right now.
Weird art can be strange, unnerving, or even funny. Games with weird box art are doing their best to grab your attention from the moment you lay your eyes on the game. And I don’t know about you, but nine times out of ten, they succeed.
Notable entries in the ‘Weirdest Art’ category are:
The Longest Road on Earth
Uncanny valley meets animals in this strange, semi-realistic portrait of clothed creatures. The greyscale gives it an artsy vibe, but it’s in the ‘Weirdest Art’ category because I just can’t get past those creepy facial expressions.
I know what you’re all thinking. “This isn’t weird — it’s Sonic”. You’re right. Kind of. It’s not weird until you realise that a blue, anthropomorphic hedgehog with sticks for legs is speeding around in his little red shoes trying to find Chaos Emeralds. What even is a Chaos Emerald? Weird.
…and the winner of the BAOTY Award for ‘Weirdest Art’’ is:
Shadow Man Remastered
Look at this. Look at this and tell me with a straight face this isn’t the weirdest video game box art you’ve ever seen. Somehow, they have made the art for Shadow Man Remastered look even weirder than the original Shadow Man art.
How did they make Shadow Man look like he’s made of clay?
Why did they turn up the colour saturation?
Questions we’ll never know the answers to.
Box Art of the Year 2022
It was hard to decide on a winner for the Box Art of the Year 2022. We’ve been blessed with many games this year, but with the help of Twitter, I was able to come to a satisfying conclusion.
The winner of the Box Art of the Year Award for 2022 is…
Despite Gotham Knights itself being a bit of a flop, the box art is gorgeous. Sexy superheroes in skin-tight outfits walking down a well-lit street on a rainy night — it’s aesthetic. My eyeballs are pleased. Not only that, but it feels good to give this game an award — it’s something that nobody else has ever done.
2022 has been a big year for games and it can be hard to find the time to play the best of the best. If you’re pressed for time, I recommend looking at the box art for every game released this year and ordering them from best to worst. Then you too can be the host of your very own awards… show… article?
Or you could just watch the Game Awards in a week and a half.