Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Books of AC3 - NAMCO Official Guide Book

-------Cover with dust-sleeve on-------

This is, quite predictably, the best book. Why? Read on.

First the boring stuff. specs: it's in the B5 format which was kind of an upgrade from the slightly smaller A5 format that was popular at the time. AC2's and RAGE RACER's guide-books were in A5, had 144 and 128 pages respectively and retailed for 950 yen. AC3 and RIDGE RACER TYPE 4, on the other hand, sported 176 and 128 pages in B5 and retailed for 1200 and 1000 yen respectively.

Moving on to the actual contents, this is the be-all end-all of AC3 books! It's got so much information one could spend a good couple of days of non-stop reading and looking at the awesome imagery on display (yes, we'll make that first part possible someday). It contains everything I mentioned in the introduction, all of it presented with such a high-quality that you'll think this is a magazine from the future! Glossy finish, all pages in color, excellent content and art, you name it, it has it (no videos printed on it though, sorry!).
It even has all 52(!) mission synopses in English, though it's not up to the perfect standard set by Frognation in the Photosphere. The translations range from "average" to "pretty good", with most resting squarely in the middle which is just fine for what they are as this isn't Shakespeare. Still, they helped clear up some things, mostly in the mid-to-final missions as well as the, huh, decisive missions (my new way to call them). This feature caught me completely by surprise (did anyone else ever attempt such a thing again?), showing just how avant-garde they wanted AC3 to be, as if everything else wasn't enough!

This baby right here earns a S-Rank for both quantity and quality of its contents, the presentation of which doesn't leave to be desired either. All-around perfect!