480px-Art of Halo Front Cover

The Art of Halo: Creating a Virtual World is a concept art book that was used when making the games. It has all the sketches, including deleted ones. A remake is due to be released October 18th, 2011.

The Art of Halo


Eric S.Trautmann


Del Ray Books

Date Released:

November 9,2004


176 pages




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The majority of the book focuses on the development of the major aspects of Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo 2, from the Weapons, the games environments and the designs. There are many early sketches and concept art for these things, much of it by Shi Kai Wang and the Bungie art team. Certain sections show the influence of earlier Bungie games on Halo's design. One section shows a timeline of Bungie's history. The ideas are shown as they evolved, from a series of sketches to storyboards and their amazing animation. Finally, some screen shots are included to show how the ideas were eventually incorporated into the Halo games. There are also many explanations for the processes and the development. Some of these explain things to Halo fans that we haven't been aware the role of Grunt Ultras. They also explain what the intentions were for many of the ideas and how they changed over time.

The final section of the book contains a few full-page pinups of various concept art. Including some scenes in the levels of Halo and ideas of new characters.


  • While the book shows ranks of certain species within the Covenant the Elites' section is missing the ranks of Ultra and Councilor, probably because these rank models did not appear until Halo 2.
  • There are several images of character design from when Halo was going to be an RTS game.
  • There are many errors in this book, such as a caption pointing at a Plasma Grenade, but pointing it out as an Assault Bomb. However, the Assault Bomb was on this page. Another mistake consisted of calling the Prophet of Mercy the Prophet of Truth.
  • This book shows the Easter egg on the Assault Bomb, where it has writing on it.
  • The Zealot shown on the Elite ranks has black as its secondary color, although the secondary color for Zealots in-game is brown or tan.
  • The level "Assault on the Control Room" is mistakenly titled "Attack on the Two Control Rooms".


Main series
The Fall of ReachThe FloodFirst StrikeGhosts of OnyxContact HarvestThe Cole Protocol
The Forerunner Saga
Cryptum Primordium Silentium
Kilo-Five series
GlasslandsThe Thursday War - One'unannounced sequel
The Art of HaloThe Art of Halo 3Encyclopedia (2009)The Essential Visual GuideThe Art of Building Worlds