Art style

Shacknews Best Art Style of 2021 – Guilty Gear Strive

A lot can be said about how Guilty Gear Strive changed the direction of the genre in fighting game netcode design with its masterful rollout implementation. However, that’s far from the only thing that makes Guilty Gear Strive flawless. It also has some of the most delightful visuals in any game right now thanks to the absolutely amazing work Arc System Works has poured into all of its art and animation.

ArcSys has always been top-notch when it comes to their fighter design, but in Guilty Gear Strive they’ve gone one step further. All of the characters have fantastic redesigns, looking ready to grab the mic during a rock show. Scenes look amazing in-game too, with transitions adding more to the typical Guilty Gear background than ever before. You’ll find yourself blasting from a vast mountainside cliff to a shady cavern as you do battle with the opponent in one stage or battle between the steps of a castle and the garden in another.

Guilty Gear Strive’s lush use of color is already present in these previous conversations, which makes everything even more vibrant, but it’s the reactive nature of shades and shadows in Guilty Gear Strive and their effects on characters that make it truly breathtaking. That is, the background of the scene has a real effect on the lighting and shadows of the characters. We’ve seen plenty of 2.5D fighting games before where there’s light and dark staging, but it’s never reflected on the characters like this. This means that between the same characters standing in this castle or in a snowy forest scene, you have entirely different shading and color adjustments on the characters that show on the characters as they move around.

Arc System Works’ fighting games have always been remarkably brilliant, but Guilty Gear Strive goes above and beyond what you’d expect from a fighting game. The use of color, the adaptation of light and shadow, and the clean, cool designs of the two characters and the backgrounds in which they fight make Guilty Gear Strive a cornucopia of visual delight. . That’s why we give it the Shacknews Best Art Style of 2021.


Watch the YouTube Shacknews Awards 2021 playlist or read our Year of the Games: 2021 article for all the awards in one place. We will be announcing our 2021 GOTY Shacknews on December 31st.

TJ Denzer is a gamer and writer with a lifelong passion for games. He found his way to Shacknews’ roster in late 2019 and has been working his way to Senior News Editor ever since. In between news coverage, he also helps out with livestreaming projects like Indie-licious focused on indie gaming, Shacknews Stimulus Games and Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at [email protected] and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.