The Art of Gears of War 3 Review

Let’s take a minute to rest from the chaos on the battlefield. Stop all the shotgun battles, chainsawing-noobs, and sniper pros. Look around you, isn’t Gears of War 3 beautiful? The team at Epic has definitely crafted their most visually impressive game yet, using that universal Unreal Engine 3. But before the developer could render all that gorgeous 3D textures and environments, they had to start at the drawing board. Literally.

Where most concept art is used for behind-the-scenes top secret development processes and the occasional marketing tease, Ballistic Publishing had done it yet again, assembling a whopping 320-page book filled with the stuff! This is the latest in Ballistic’s Art of Games series, where they bring you the previously hidden concept art from the biggest AAA titles you know and love, including Oddworld, God of War, and Uncharted just to name a few. However, Ballistic has outdone themselves yet again, having The Art of Gears of War 3 not only being their newest, but also largest book yet!

The Art of Gears 3 is divided into several different sections including: characters, weapons, vehicles, and environments. In the characters section, you’ll find art for your heroes and villains alike. See the original ideas for Dom, Marcus, Cole, Baird, and the rest of the gang (I’m just glad they didn’t go with the original Anya, just saying) as well as the local baddies, Myrrah, her Locust possy, and the Lambents. Fans of the series will be treated to some never before seen ideas, like Water Variant Locusts and Dizzy’s daughters.

From there, you’ll move onto the basis for the game: the arsenal. On vehicle side of things, don’t expect a whole lot of variation from what you see in the actual game as most changes seem to have very minor and cosmetic. However, the weapons half is a different story, which I’m sure a lot of you (including myself) will enjly looking at. See how the Hammerburst came to look the way it does among others and also see some defunct ideas. It’s rather interesting to look at an Assault Rifle, Locust Launcher, and others that didn’t show up in the game you’re playing right now. From there, you’ll revisit all the different environments from Gears 3 and once again see the gorgeous vistas of Azura and others and how they developed along the way.

Overall, seeing the process of development for one of the biggest Xbox 360 exclusives is a joy for gamers and also for art-lovers as there are some engaging art pieces right here with some really good commentary on the ideas and background of how a lot of characters, enemies, environments and weapons came to light. I praise Ballistic Publishing for acquiring the artworks to one of the best-selling AAA game for the 360.

Prices for The Art of Gears of War 3 come in 3 (pun probably intended) different variations. You can get the Basic Soft Cover for $65 USD, Special Edition for $129, and Limited Folio Edition for $300.  Most people will go for the basic soft cover edition, but for the hard core fan the limited folio edition is individually numbered and signed by Epic Games’ Art Director, Chris Perna.  The Folio edition also comes with the metal-carved cover ornament and a special book cover/case, the first 100 customers that order it will also receive a rare A3 print of Clayton Carmine.



  • Gamers and art-lovers will love this book
  • 320 pages of awesome imagery to look at
  • Never before seen exclusives
  • Lots of comments and tidbits on every page
  • Can preview all the pages on the website before buying
  • For a 320 page art book the basic soft cover is well priced for a AAA game book


  • Would have been cool to have a slip cover like the Massive Black 2
  • This book was so good we wanted even more pages


You can check out the entire book and order at the ballistic website.



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