The first three "preview" copies of the book made their way through the Golden Gate Bridge in April. One copy of the Lettered Edition and two copies of the Standard Edition. Dreams and Visions Press owner Stan Stice was kind enough to sacrifice one copy to Crystal Dynamics. The other Standard Edition remains in our possession and now resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.
And yes, this is an actual picture of the first Art of Tomb Raiderbook set in front of the bridge. No Photoshop trickery.
Send us a picture of your book in its new home and we'll post the most remote, creative, or unique photos here.
First Look at Crystal Dynamics.
A few images from the "first look" at Crystal Dynamics in Redwood City.
Creative Director Darrell Gallagher looks at the Standard Edition.
Lettered Edition can be seen in the foreground.
Global Brand Manager Karl Stewart (left)takes a look through the Lettered Edition of The Art of Tomb Raider. Brand Manager Matt Knoles (right) pages though the Standard Edition.
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Enough with the words, here's a video walkthrough of the Art of Tomb Raider, 2 volume set. The Pre-order price only lasts until the end of March, then they will return to $125US plus S&H.
Progress Update: Books will be arriving and going through customs here in the United States sometime between March 26 and April 3. Once we get the shipment, each book will be individually inspected for any defects, printing errors or otherwise. Once each book passes this quality test, we will then begin shipping.
We wanted to take a moment to address some of the concerns that have been expressed in online forums and in emails we've received here at Dreams and Visions Press.
First and most importantly, the entire print run of The Art of Tomb Raider are on a boat on their way to the US from Singapore. The printer notes that the delivery can take anywhere from 4-6 weeks, in part depending on how smoothly things go through customs once they arrive in the U.S. While we are hopeful that books will arrive and begin shipping before the end of March, at this point it's out of our hands.
Once the books arrive at our warehouse, hundreds of cases need to be opened, and each book individually inspected for any damage in transit. Once that is done, all pre-orders need to be securely packaged for individual shipping to you, to ensure their safe and secure arrival. Until you've held the book in your hands, you won't be able to appreciate why it costs what it does to ship. The two volumes in the slipcase weigh 12 pounds - and that's before any packing materials are taken into consideration. As customers of our larger (yet lighter) The Art of Ralph McQuarrie volume are well aware, international shipping is particularly expensive because there is no surface option - only air.
We also wanted to confirm that the pre-order discount on the book will expire March 31st, at which time the cost will rise to the retail price of $125 for the two volume, slipcased set. Several people have asked when and if a less expensive, mass-market edition will be available. Dreams and Visions Press licensed for 2000 copies to be produced worldwide. We are not a mainstream publisher, but a specialty press focused on producing high-quality limited editions. There will be no mass market edition, nor will The Art of Tomb Raider be available through Amazon or any other online retailers. Once the 2000 copy run is sold out, that's it. We certainly understand that a book of this nature is not for all fans or all budgets. We do trust that those people who order it will treasure the book for years to come, and will be as pleased with the finished product as we are.
At Dreams and Visions Press, it is our custom to offer a special thank you gift to those folks who support our projects by pre-ordering. As it was going to be a surprise, but given the delays we felt it best that we share what we have in store for everyone who pre-orders (either edition) of The Art of Tomb Raider. As you may already know, Crystal Dynamics created new artwork for the two volumes and outer slipcase. We are producing an extremely limited edition of fine art prints of those three pieces of art, suitable for framing, that will ship with all pre-ordered copies of the book. These will only go to those orders received before the price increase on March 31st, 2010.
In closing, it's important that we clarify that we are not a major publisher with hundreds of employees. We are a very small specialty press. When you contact us, you don't get an automated reply from an outsourced customer service department, you're communicating with the principals. When you see Dreams and Visions Press at shows, you're talking directly to us. When you get a package in the mail, you can rest assured that it was our hands that did that, not some immense shipping department not concerned with how or whether your order arrives. At times, these limitations result in delays and missed expectations, for which we sincerely apologize.
We hand pick our projects and put all our efforts into every step of the production process to ensure we are satisfied with the final product - as we are our own customers, first and foremost. We do hope that you will find the finished product more than worth the wait, and request that you do contact us if you have any concerns with your order at any time.
We received preview copies of the book today, and just in time to celebrate Lara's Birthday. Two copies of the Standard Edition and one copy of the Lettered Edition came via courier from Singapore.
Below are a few sample images of the Standard Edition.
Click Images for a larger view.
A quick look through the pages and I am happy to say that the book looks stunning. The slip case has a nice glossy finish and is a sturdy home for the two volume set. The color is vibrant and the art has been replicated beautifully.
After almost 3 years of work, it is so nice to finally see this come together. I think I've looked through the pages a dozen times already.
We are in the home stretch now! Happy Birthday Lara and hope everyone has a great Valentine's Day too.
We are still on track for a mid February delivery to our doors, then we will begin shipping them out to you. These last few weeks will hopefully go by quickly as we eagerly anticipate holding the final product in our hands.
In the meantime here's a quick bit of info that didn't make it into the book. The image itself is in the book, so don't worry. The image above, completed by artist Joel Boucquemont, is a "Loading Screen" and contains a billboard of a young lady in some sort of advertisement.
The model in the image is none other than Daniel Cabuco's wife. Daniel, as you know, contributed a ton of art work to Legend and Anniversary. Incidentally, his wife's name is Kim and yes, we did ask him if we could mention this.
Here's a snapshot of the in-game image provided by Sermongar.
Very cool. Thanks!
If you have been thinking about picking up one of these, now is the time. Here are some more details about the Lettered Edition:
26 Copies worldwide (Lettered A-Z) 1 - Original Signed Sketch from Angel of Darkness Artist James Kenny
1 - Original Signed Sketch from Legend/Anniversary Artist Daniel Cabuco
* Artwork above is original, not a copy. These are new pieces of art drawn exclusively for the Lettered Edition. You will own a one-of-a-kind piece of Tomb Raider art. These pages will not be bound into the book, so that you may frame and display them as you prefer.
1 - Signature Page with 3 Exclusive pencil sketches from creator Toby Gard (seen below)
Exclusive Slip Case Cover for the Lettered Edition
Final Price - $500US (does not include shipping and handling)
IMPORTANT NOTE: To those who have reserved a Lettered Edition. You should have received a message with the above information on December 21st, 2009. If you didn't, we do not have a copy reserved for you. Please contact us immediately if you had reserved a copy and did not get the aforementioned email.