My first computer was the Apple ][, back in the day when having more than 8K of RAM meant you had a superior machine. The games had to be tightly written to fit on 5-1/2" floppies, but we had some really good games that told great stories and made you think about life -- like Ultima V. Ever since then, I've been interested in video games, especially fantasy games that told great stories.
Since the first fantasy video games I played, the fantasy art in computer games has gotten better and ever more beautiful since the monochrome green-monitor days. Nowadays, games look and sound almost as good as television and movies. The problem is, you have to play the game to see it all.
One incident that really impressed this on me was playing Republic Commando. No matter how hard I tried, I just couldn't finish the first mission on Geonosis. That meant I didn't get to see the sights and experience the rest of the game -- the other planets, the other scenes... everything.
And that's one of the reasons whys I created this website. Maybe it's an awful game but the artwork is awesome. Maybe you can't win and won't see everything. Maybe, like me, you just don't have time to play all the games you'd like. You can at least see all the eye candy you missed in some great screenshots. We bring you the fantasy art of computer games so you don't have to play games to see great fantasy art.
Then there's the other reason for this website: It's a small repository for all the devalued art out there. Art (and sound) is vitally important to games, to the extent that so much is created. There's a glut of art. And after playing a game, it's "discarded". You just move on to the next game and the art quickly disappears into obscurity. This is perhaps particularly so with the so-called "casual games", especially the hidden object games:
Often there's beautiful artwork (although a lot of it is designed to be used in hidden object puzzles) but the focus is still the game. And the overall gameplay is so brief that there's no lasting or replay value to it. So what happens to the artwork afterwards? This website, then, is also a collection of lost video game artwork -- lost and forgotten when the game of today becomes yesterday's news, then too old to be of notice. Or when game studios close and all links are lost.
Thank you for visiting this site. I hope you find a thing or two that inspires you.
You may know, from way back when, that we used to be The Fantasy Art of Computer Games at http://www.fantasy-art-and-portraits.com, and we also actively maintained a blog that posted a few pieces of artwork every day at The Fantasy Art Blog (http://fantasy-art-and-portraits.com). We decided to close the website and merge the two projects into Game Art Archive, as well as expand the range of what is presented to all sorts of game art, not just fantasy.
The blog is still active, so you can still visit it and browse through over 1,000 posts.