I received my copy of Ken ga Kimi Wafuu Denki Emaki last week, a heavy, 160-page hard cover artbook. I got the normal edition as the deluxe was sold out (though recently SKiT Dolce has reopened orders gee) plus the box for the deluxe edition would’ve added a hefty shipping price. Naturally, expect (visual) spoilers below the cut.
The artbook opens up with a full spread illustration of Tsuzuramaru and Kayo, showing clearly who is the main guy in the game. It is followed by the game box cover and CD illustrations. These make up about 10 pages. The next section which takes up about 34 pages are all the character pages: different profiles, expressions and outfits of the 6 guys each coupled with a beautiful opening illustration. After that there Kayo’s too but hers is a lot more limited despite the amazing collection of outfits she has as you can see. The sub-characters also get featured but a lot less page-space are dedicated to them, as you would have expected.
I think it’s quite clear by now that it really is an artbook. No character quotes, no character profiles, no chapter stories just art after art after art.
The third section is the thickest, 64 pages of game CGs and bonus illustrations you unlock in the game. Everything is neatly spaced out and ordered by common route, and character routes (Tsuzuramaru, Kei, Saneaki, Enishi, Sakyou, Suzumaru). Nothing much to say as the pictures speak for themselves and that the colouring still comes off beautifully on paper.
Following this is a smaller section of promotional illustrations that were featured in magazines like B’sLOG and Dengenki Girl’s Style. About 24 pages there and we can be sure that this isn’t all the Ken ga Kimi illustrations out there since Rejet has drama CDs planned and possibly more. The next section are drafts, roughs, whatever you want to call them. We have 16 pages featuring rough sketches of all the characters – I love looking at these so I wish there were more pages dedicated to them. Yomi’s notes are interesting to read, especially Saneaki since she drew some hilarious stuff lol. A height chart is also included, as well as a look at the five swords.
The very last section is just over 10 pages, featuring the drafts of game CGs and box cover illustrations. I really liked some of the initial drafts such as Kei’s and Sakyou’s since it shows more despair on their faces (oops lol). It’s also interesting to note that for the initial box cover design had two certain people at the back……making me wonder if they were supposed to have a greater role in the game as a whole.
All in all it’s a very gorgeous artbook. My personal wish would’ve been for the artbook cover illustration to have been included inside, as well as more rough sketches. But I heard that the deluxe’s booklet kind of covered more rough sketches so it can’t be helped. Despite that, the artbook is jam-packed and to add to that it’s hard cover. You may wonder why I keep talking about it but it’s really not that common since it’s more costly. The paper used is also pretty thick so yeah, Rejet didn’t hold back. Usually when I buy these sort of things, one of my favourite sections to read would be staff interviews and comments. But since this is an artbook, such a section wouldn’t exist. Again, as much as I love reading about how game concepts are conceived, it can’t be helped. /o\
So yeah, ignore my whimsical wishes and go for it if you love the art for the game!