The Ōkami Artbook and Comics
With Ōkami being such an impressively artistic video game, created in a style reminiscent of classic Japanese watercolour paintings, it’s no surprise for the official art book to also be artistically rich – spanning 288 pages.
Full of early concept drawings, paintings and artist’s notes, this artbook offers an impressive insight into the sheer scale of the work that created one of the most unique video games ever made.
The artbook addresses the reader directly, divided into “if the story were real” and “making of the story” sections, with personal messages to the fans by then Clover Studio’s president/CEO (Atsushi Inaba) and director (Hideki Kamiya).
This (original Japanese and later English translated) artbook is difficult to find second-hand. Quite commonly when people receive their new copy, they’ll happily show it off at their places of choice on the Internet, as (besides being beautiful) the artbook is not always easy to get new either.
Also available, are some Japanese comic books (not made by Ōkami’s original creators) which can only be ordered directly from Japanese online stores.
The Ōkami artbook – even for people who aren’t fans of video games – provides a valuable insight into developing characters and settings. The artbook has a candid and open approach, revealing the thought processes involved in creating the finished product!
It appears as though Ōkami’s creators were genuinely proud of their achievement, and didn’t want to tarnish their work with unauthentic marketing-only-speak.
Artbooks can easily make it appear as though the finished product had magically and perfectly materialised overnight, almost as if that artbook had been written by seventeen or more impersonal lawyers with frowns on their faces – thankfully not in this case. Magic tricks can be very nice, but when buying an artbook, one is allowed to expect actual behind-the-scenes reality and substance: The Ōkami artbook contains such genuine substance.
Here are some places where you can order the Ōkami artbook – titled “Ōkami Official Complete Works”, and also some insightful links to more information and reviews:
Buying the Ōkami Artbook Locally
If you’re not a fan of online ordering, you should be able to walk into most book stores and ask them to order the artbook for you. It probably won’t take any longer for a brick-and-mortar book store to get the artbook, and you’ll also be supporting a local business.
To find a local book store in your area, don’t forget about the good old “Yellow Pages” business directory for your state/country, as not all book stores are on the Internet, however most business directories are.
Buying the Ōkami Artbook on the Internet
If you prefer the Internet-only approach, then there are quite a few options available to you. A good number of the brick-and-mortar stores found in a business directory will have a website that allows you to order, or at the very least make an enquiry. It’s also possible to buy the artbook from Amazon.com, however if you prefer to support a smaller online business, there are many reliable online-only book sellers available:
To assist in your search, here is the full title, publisher and ISBN information of the (English-translated) Ōkami artbook:
Title: Ōkami Official Complete Works
Publisher: Udon Entertainment (10 June 2008)
To search the above website, usually typing “Ōkami” into the search fields is enough. Below you will find the required details to search the Internet for these comics, when using your favourite search engine:
Title: Ōkami Official Anthology Comic
ISBN 10: 4862333877
ISBN 13: 9784862333872
Title: Ōkami Official Anthology Comic 2
ISBN 10: 4862334008
ISBN 13: 9784862334008
Title: Ōkami emonogatari: maigo sagashi to o‑matsuri sawagi
大神 絵物語 まいごさがしとお祭さわぎ
Title: Ōkami emonogatari: kita no senshi to yōkai taiji
大神 絵物語 北の戦士と妖怪退治
Title: Ōkami emonogatari: kusanagi go to dotabata katsugeki
大神 絵物語 クサナギ伍とドタバタ活劇
You may also come across other Ōkami-related items such as coloring-in books, stationery sets and small smartphone accessories or other merchandise on websites that sell these comics. You’ll undoubtedly come across things unrelated to the video game as well – the word “Ōkami” does mean “wolf” in Japanese, after all.
Libraries rarely have the English-translated Ōkami artbook, and generally won’t keep the comics, however if you’re impatient or curious and want to see inside the artbook, then below you’ll find informative links: (Come back soon! )
For now, you can actually “borrow/view” the original Japanese-only Ōkami artbook from the following website, and see it on your computer screen:
Ōkami Official Illustration Collection: Archive.org/details/artbook_Okami_Official_Illustration_Collection/
Unfortunately, the writing is completely in Japanese, but the pictures are very high quality. There is no apparent location on the Internet to view the English-translated version.
If you get stuck while playing the game, you can also view the official playthrough book from BradyGames here:
Ōkami BradyGames Strategy Guide: Archive.org/details/okami-official-strategy-guide/
This official playthrough has straightforward information, various interesting tips, and is (in my wise opinion) more than 99% accurate – the authors do make minor (factual) errors every now and again, that however won’t affect the outcome of the video game.
To not reduce your enjoyment when playing Ōkami, it’s best to only check the BradyGames playthrough if you get truly stuck, which rarely happens, because Issun (Ammy’s bug/friend) will in most cases give you clues.
Another place that goes into almost lovingly-crafted information and reviews about anything related to Ōkami, and also the English translated version of the artbook is here:
Let’s Play Archive (Ōkami): LPArchive.org/Ōkami/Supplemental 1/
The amount of quality information about the Ōkami video game you’ll find there is remarkable. There’s lots of background information, mythology talk and plenty of excellent screenshots and artbook scans – not ideally categorised and indexed, but top quality and at least 99% accurate from what I’ve seen (it would benefit from citing sources).
Due to a lot of websites that sell these items only being for Japanese audiences, the information on this page is still incomplete. More information will be added when it’s made available.
Hey! If you’ve got a good tip on how to best own or borrow these books and comics, please get in touch as it’ll help out everyone who wants to know more about this artistic video game. Thanks!
(Accessed December 2019 – January 2020)
Header image is a montage of official photographs of Ōkami artbook and comics.
The “Ōkami comics” image is also a montage of official photos/background art.
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