Finding The Best 8-Bit Nintendo Art From Japan

Build Your Own Nintendo Famicom Art Gallery

Japan always gets the best videogame artwork. I’m not bitter, but it definitely makes decorating a grown-up-friendly game room more challenging. Since we can’t just wander into your average gaming shop and expect to find a wide array of frame-worthy artwork, we have to be a bit more creative in finding suitable pieces.

This time around, I just happened to be browsing around some Nintendo-themed photos on Flickr and found a collection of framed Famicom Disk System posters belonging to djdac. Considering how pathetic most of the NES-era art is here in the US, I was amazed by how much some of them reminded me of epic posters you might see in a movie theatre.

Digg!

It turns out that these posters were distributed in Japan either at game stores and on the streets for advertisements or folded up and included with the actual Famicom Disk System games. They measure up to about 11.75 x 8.5 cm, so they aren’t very large, but when matted and framed, they can be a great addition to your wall. Even though there are some good Nintendo Power posters out there, these Famicom posters (sometimes referred to as handbills) typically have a more artistic look to them in addition to the Japanese charm that intrigues us foreigners. I did an eBay search for “Famicom poster” and found a handful of other excellent examples that I didn’t see on Flickr.

The Metroid poster is my personal favorite (especially when compared to an American alternative) due to the finely detailed drawing, beautiful color work, and the creative use of animation frames accenting the background. You can see the rest of my favorites below including the epic, old-school Link saving Zelda and the geeky Japanese kid pwning a terrified adult at Tetris.

Metroid Famicom Poster

 

Zelda Famicom Poster

 

Super Mario Bros 2 Lost Levels Famicom Poster

 

Super Mario Bros 3 Famicom Poster

 

Kid Icarus Famicom Poster

 

Tetris Famicom Poster

If the original prints are too pricey or hard-to-find for you, you can pick up a few reproductions for a low price from “i heart yuna” on the FamicomWorld forums. From the 8.15″ x 11.6″ dimensions he mentions, it sounds like he enlarged them, so these may actually be a better solution for hanging in a game room. If you know of any other sources for these posters, let me know in comments section below.

11 Comments

  1. PacoDG says:

    Oh man, that Tetris one floats my boat, I am on the fence, I might actually bid on that 🙁

  2. garsh says:

    Wow, thanks for this. You made the Internet good. Too bad there aren’t English versions, or without text at all.

  3. racketboy says:

    I actually think the Japanese text is appealing — especially on the Metroid one.

  4. gnome says:

    Gotta love Kid Icarus’ Parthenon…

  5. d says:

    Not a huge fan of Zelda, but I like the Zelda one the best. Awesome article once agin.

  6. I’m a bit resistant to completely agree here. I (with not a lot of effort) managed to snag a few quality retro gaming posters several years ago. I have a lovely, large Donkey Kong Country 2 poster in my room as well as a few others. Game stores (well at least in Australia) use to give away or sell their old gaming merchandise. Which is where a lot of my collectables come from.

    I haven’t tried searching for anything pre-1994 and this is probably where it gets much more harder. Still I don’t imagine that it would be too difficult to take prints off of some current high resolution artowkr available on the internet.

    For example, on Capcom’s Press site they have some extremely high resolution Street Fighter 2 artwork which would turn out nicely as a poster sized print.

    Just some food for thought. I might snoop around and see what I can find.

  7. Argh…missed the ‘8-bit’ in the title. ><

  8. Mucx says:

    Love the minimalism on the Super Mario Bros 3 effort. I remember getting a poster of this with my game. Although, it was the US version and it was just a sort of landscape A3 effort of the Mario and gang flying/running out of the castle.

    Please post links to this sort of hi-resolution artwork is you have any!

  9. mario says:

    I would liketo know where in melbourne or in australia there would be a big selection of nintendo 8-bit games and other devies such as cleaners and other stuff for nintendo.
    thankyou

  10. Carl says:

    Found this old post, but I sell these in my store, http://famicomshop.com.

    They are originals and not reproductions. Some of the ones I have are quite rare.

    You can view some that I have kept for my collection as well here:
    http://www.theretrogamer.net/gallery/v/handbills/

    Thanks,
    Carl

  11. Carl says:

    I noticed some errors in the original post.

    These handbills are 8.25″ x 11.75″ or A4 size. (inches not cm)

    Just wanted to put that out there as well!

    Thanks,
    Carl