Death by Video Game - Simon Parkin

Serpent's Tail

'Whether it’s Space Invaders, Candy Crush Saga or Grand Theft Auto, video games draw us in and don’t let go. In Taiwan, a spate of deaths at gaming cafés is raising a question: why is it that some of us are playing games beyond the limits of our physical wellbeing?'

Death by Video Game explores our often obsessive relationship with gaming. Due to the short and punchy title I knew I wanted this cover to feature very prominent typography. The main influence for the design was warning signs. They often feature bold fluorescent colours with large black icons and type.

To represent gaming I focused on the symbol of a game controller which acts as our direct physical feed to the virtual world. In order to mirror the warning sign aesthetics I created a simple graphic image combining a skull with a game controller. Initially looking at the buttons and analog sticks forming eyes within a skull but in the end allowing the controllers wire to form the silhouette.

The end result allows the graphic illustration to interweave between the typography whilst the strong Pantone magenta thrusts the embossed type out of the black, the skull is also embossed and gloss uv'ed giving the controller a plastic finish and creating palpable buttons allowing for physical interaction with the cover. 

Published by Serpent's Tail August 2015

Cover Design and Illustration

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© Steve Panton 2018