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NES/Famicom: a visual compendium

An unofficial visual tribute to the NES and Famicom

Bath, United Kingdom
Bitmap Books Contact Me

Welcome ようこそ

Welcome to our Kickstarter campaign to create an unofficial coffee table book on the NES/Famicom. The book pays tribute to the amazing pixel art, product design and graphic design associated with them.

Background 背景

With its cutting edge graphics and extensive catalogue of iconic games, the NES/Famicom played a huge part in the history of video games. It stormed onto the market and immediately raised the bar with now classic games such as Donkey KongSuper Mario Bros.Duck Hunt and Mega Man. Over its lifespan across the world, the NES/Famicom had varied success but it's fair to say that classic franchises such as MarioMetroidZelda andFinal Fantasy simply wouldn't be so successful if it wasn't for it introducing them to gamers worldwide.


Depending on where you are in the world, the NES/Famicom had varied success, but you can't deny its impact and importance in the video game industry. It will make the perfect visual compendium because of its amazing pixel art and iconic graphic style. Throw into the mix the quirky Famicom and Famicom Disk System and I believe this will be a really interesting book and offer something different to the previous books in the series.




This will be the 4th visual compendium from Bitmap Books. Previous books in the series on the Commodore 64Commodore Amiga and ZX Spectrum have been met with critical acclaim, with the latter recently winning gold in the Roses UK Design Awards. The visual compendium books aim to showcase the very best pixel art, box art and product design around each system. Typically, the visuals are the hero with small soundbites of text accompanying each game. This may be a quote from the games original developer/artist, a review from a well know journalist or even a fan taking about his/her memories. Within each book is also a series of larger text heavy features on subjects such a key software house or developer/artist interviews.



All books are all designed by graphic designer Sam Dyer and have an art book feel to them. Hundreds of man hours are spent making sure everything looks as good as it possibly can, the colours are balanced and everything looks perfect. The best printers and binders are used and little extra touches are added here and there to make each book a beautiful thing to own and collect. 

The book 目標の本

The book will focus on the Famicom in Japan and the NES across North America and Europe. It will offer a visual snapshot of the best games, developers, box art and product design from across these territories. As the name suggests, the book is mainly visual. It won't be a detailed insight into the NES/Famicom, more a visual companion designed to stir up excitement and nostalgia for this fantastic machine and it’s legacy of classic games. 



The book will be 170mm x 230mm and printed lithographically to the highest standards. This will ensure that the colours in the book are really vibrant and the pages will feel high quality and luxurious. As standard, all visual compendiums now come with a spot varnished cover and a spot varnished protective dust jacket. The binding is 'thread sewn' which means that the book can lie flat so the imagery can be fully enjoyed. The binding does not use glue which can crack over time and result in loose pages. Thread sewn binding is the best available.



NES/Famicom: a visual compendium will come in softcover and hardback editions and be 500 pages long each. Due to all the stretch goals being reached the book is significantly improved. Metallic inks, bookmark ribbons and gatefold pages have been added!



The book will be created by an experienced and talented team of writers, designers and artists.Sam Dyer will oversee all design. Steve Jarrett (Total! / Edge / Official Nintendo Magazine) will oversee all copy and be the books editor. Damien McFerran (Nintendo Life) and Andy Robertswill be in charge of writing certain sections of the book. Matt Wilsher will be in charge of photography. Craig Stevenson will be creating a suite of bespoke pixel art for the book that will be used throughout. Craig will be emulating the NES pixel style and palette.

Content 内容

Throughout the book, various mini-features such as one on R.O.B. the Robot will appear. R.O.B. has been expertly immortalised in pixels by Craig Stevenson in various poses and situations.


The book will start off with a foreword written by ex-Rare graphic artist Kevin Bayliss. Kevin started his career in the games industry in the late 80s at Rare. Working under Tim Stamper, Kevin learnt his trade on the NES and has a huge amount of passion for the machine. Throughout his early years at Rare he worked loads of NES games, most notably Battletoads. Nowadays, Kevin is part of the Playtonic team that are currently developing Yooka-Laylee.

Then the book will give a brief overview of the creation of the NES/Famicom and set the scene for what is to come. This section will include the story of how the machine came to market and include various facts and quotes from people involved with the project, including the designer of the NES - Masayuki Uemura.



For roughly half of the book, each spread will then feature an image of a game which is accompanied by a 200 word review/critique of the game. In total, over 100 games across the various regions will feature. 




We have also sought permission from Nintendo Game Maps and The Video Game Atlas to print some of their amazing game maps. It looks so cool to see these maps in all their glory as they offer a new perspective on games you may have seen images of many times before.


Also featured within the book will be a series of five developer profiles written by Damien McFerran (Nintendo Life). These profiles will showcase key developers such as Capcom,Sunsoft and Komami for instance. In contrast to the game pages, the profiles will contain approx. 2000 words and also include images of the companies' key releases.

Damien will also be interviewing a selection of key individuals that worked with the NES/Famicom. As its stands the interviewees will include David Darling (Codemasters)Ste and John Pickford (Zippo Games)Kevin Bayliss (Rare) and others to be confirmed soon.



As with the other books in the compendium series, Matt Wilsher will once again be photographing his way through the systems and peripherals in his usual beautiful style. Pretty much everything from the Disk System to R.O.B the Robot to the Famicom keyboard will be photographed.


Also featured in the book will be a section on fan art. There is some stunning tribute art out there and this section aims to showcase it. So far we are delighted to be featuring fan art from artists such as Jon SommarviaRadio GoshaMelody WangNina Matsumoto and Rob Duenas.


Finally, the book will feature mini-articles on subjects such as box art, black box games, the home-brew scene and unreleased games.



Contributors 貢献者

So far we have a handful of contributors that will be writing in the book and as the book develops, many more will be added. 

  • Kevin Bayliss (Rare)
  • Gregg Mayles (Rare)
  • Julian 'Jaz' Rignall (Mean Machines)
  • Steve Jaratt (Total! / Edge / Official Nintendo Magazine)
  • Andy Dyer (Total!)
  • David Darling (Codemasters)
  • Ste and John Pickford (Zippo Games)
  • Scott Pelland (Nintendo Power)
  • Bruce Schlickernd (Interplay)

The only downside of the book being unofficial is that we will be not able to talk to any current Nintendo employees and many of these games original creators are still working there. In these instances, we will be using text from existing interviews which is completely standard practice and all sources will be credited appropriately.


Shipping 発送

We use a professional fulfilment house for all pick and pack. This minimises any issues that occasionally come up with Kickstarter fulfilment. I will be working with the fulfilment house to devise the best packaging solution. All books will be shipped in a protective book wrap and overseas books will also be wrapped in a jiffy bag for added protection.

Books will be shipped in February 2017.

Why Bitmap Books を選ぶその理由

Bitmap Books can be trusted to deliver on their promises and produce a product of the highest possible quality.

Our previous books on the Super Famicom, Arcade, Commodore 64, Commodore Amiga and ZX Spectrum received some outstanding feedback.

I hope you will support this campaign.

Thanks / ありがとうございます

Sam Dyer

Please note that this book is not officially endorsed by Nintendo but is produced as a tribute to the iconic Nintendo Entertainment System / Famicom. All games and characters are the property of the copyright owners and are used for review purposes only. Nintendo®, NES®, Famicom®, Mario®, Zelda®, Metroid®, Mega Man® and and Final Fantasy® and all registered trademarks owed by Nintendo.

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