Despite what some people might say, the 2000s were a great time for game cover art. Here are some of the best ones you can find!
As we move deeper into the digital age of gaming, it seems less important to have a cover that stands out. This is a huge shame, since some of the best box art comes from the Super Nintendo and Nintendo 64 eras. But at the beginning of the 2000s, there were still some big names.
Whether it’s the great cover art for Halo by the masterminds at Bungie or Nintendo’s amazing Japan-only box art for their biggest franchises, there are many great pieces of art on the front and center of many games from the 2000s.
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Demon’s Souls was the first of FromSoftware’s Soulsborne games, which became a worldwide hit. Its Asia-only case showed a knight slumped against a wall with their shield full of arrows, capturing the game’s harsh, dark, and painful worlds.
Compared to the international cover art, this one is much darker and gives a more sinister and hopeless impression. Even though we really like the other cover, this one is better in almost every way. It does a great job of showing you that there will be hard times in the future, but you can get through them if you stand up to them and don’t give up.
The cover art for Bungie’s Halo games is some of the best in gaming, with Halo: Combat Evolved’s being one of the most recognizable for an FPS game. But when we think of their best box art, we immediately think of Halo 2‘s classic shot of Master Chief crouched on a wall with two SMGs in each hand. Behind him is the beautiful skyline of New Mombasa.
Even though the image above is a copy of the iconic box art made by 343 for Halo 2’s 10th anniversary, the classic still looks great. Halo 2’s stakes are raised by the Banshees and Phantoms flying through the thick smoke in the background. You can’t get much better than this, but we also want to point out that the cover art for Halo 3: ODST is also very good.
Having a collage of characters on your box art can be very hit or miss, but it almost never ends up being a hit. Persona 4‘s, on the other hand, does a great job of showing off the personalities of each of the main characters while also drawing attention to the protagonist in a way that doesn’t feel too busy or overwhelming.
The composition’s use of color fits perfectly with the style of Persona 4, but it doesn’t seem like too much. They were careful enough to show off each character and color without making the whole thing look like a mess, which is more than enough to earn our praise!
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
The box art for Uncharted 2 may be the most accurate way to show what the game is like, which is pretty rare. Nathan Drake is hanging from a train cart that is hanging off the side of a snow-covered cliff. His gun and a separate train cart are falling down what looks like a huge drop.
Just by looking at the cover, you can tell that this is going to be a thrilling action adventure that will keep you on the edge of your seat the whole time. And that’s exactly what it feels like to play Uncharted 2. Naughty Dog does it better than anyone else, and this is just the beginning.
Whether you like it or not, you can’t deny that the artwork in Kingdom Hearts is amazing. Everyone else is looking toward the light, but Riku is the only one who is facing away from it. This is a small but important detail. And the heart-shaped moon that lights up the sky full of stars is lovely.
Kingdom Hearts can be a confusing and weird mess at times, but its art is absolutely stunning, and the more you look at this cover art, the more you can see that. Even though there are many beautiful and unique game box designs, this one will always be remembered, and there’s a good reason for that.
Grand Theft Auto 4
When it comes to iconic box art, Grand Theft Auto 4‘s box art took what GTA 3 had started and ran with it. It took full advantage of the comic book-style box format, showing different characters and actions in each square to make the most of the space they had.
Nico, the main character, is in the top-center box. The other boxes show things like a sniper, a person flying a helicopter, a police officer pulling someone over, and a lot more. It also has the famous image of the woman licking a lollipop, which people seemed to be crazy about around the time the game came out. Still, the cover art is cool and stylized, and people will remember it for a long time.
The Paper Mario series is praised for its unique and innovative gameplay, great writing, likeable characters, and unbeatable exploration. Still, almost no one talks about how great the cover art was for the first game. We are so happy to see Parakarry save Paper Mario from falling while Lady Bow and Kooper stand behind them.
Overall, this is another great piece of cover art that does a great job of setting the scene and showing a lot of characters without making it feel like too much. There’s a lot to look at in this one picture, and it’s all great, so this box art is great.
If you played Bayonetta when it first came out in 2009 and you weren’t in Japan, the box art probably looked very different than the one shown above. Even though this cover art is on the modern re-releases of Slope Game, most of them didn’t have it. This was strange at the time and is still strange when we look back on it.
Bayonetta’s back is turned to the camera as she looks out at a huge moon surrounded by beautiful clouds and feathers. This is an incredibly beautiful picture. Even though this doesn’t really show the game’s pace or how it’s played, it’s still a great piece of cover art that deserves to be talked about.
Final Fantasy 10 International
Final Fantasy 10 International is a game that is only available in Japan. It has one of the most beautiful and unique covers ever, with Tidus and Yuna standing together in a pool of water under a night sky. This picture is amazing for many reasons, but seeing both characters in pain and sadness with the unbearably beautiful scenery in the background is something else.
Even the version of Final Fantasy 10 that isn’t for the International market has great artwork and box art, but this one is especially stunning. Many fans of the series say that FF10 is the best, and the beautiful cover of the game makes it hard to disagree. Square’s box art is always great, but this one is better than anything they’ve ever done.
The Legend Of Zelda: Majora’s Mask
Last but not least, we have a beautiful cover that can only be found on the Japanese version of the game. It’s for one of the best games ever made, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask. On the back of this box, you can see a young Link riding on Epona with Tatl by his side. But what really makes this case stand out is the group of characters from the game that show up more than once. They are shown in the background with a brilliant gradient of purple and blue colors.
Having the Happy Mask Salesman, Skull Kid, Deku Link, and many other characters on the cover without it looking cluttered or thrown together is an accomplishment in and of itself, but what makes this one of the best cover arts ever made is how well the colors blend and contrast with Link, Epona, and Tatle, who are all fully colored and realized.