Once upon a time, as publishing became cheap enough to produce mass entertainment in the form of magazines and paper backs, a genre was born: the pulp fiction novel. Featuring lurid tales of mystery, romance, and exploitation, they were cheap in more ways than one. Decades later, San Diego based freelance illustrator Ástor Alexander has created an impressive set of video game themed pulp fiction mock-ups, each a perfect mimic of the dusty drama and poised tension of the genre’s iconic covers. Featuring Peach, Mario, Luigi, and Wario from Super Mario Bros., Midna from The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, and Samus Aran from Metroid, they are stunningly faithful to the style. Perhaps the most delightful one is Elizabeth in Bioshock Infinite from the Burial At Sea DLC, which was set in an alternate, detective noire type alternate reality that almost begged to be immortalized as a pulp cover.
There are other fantastic scenes depicted in the pulp cover style that you can check out in the artist’s portfolio, including a serial featuring Dr. Gero, Cell, Trunks, Android 17 and Android 18 from TV and manga series Dragonball Z. You can check that out at his ArtStation page here. His (occasionally NSFW) art also dabbles in other works like the Batman series and celebrity portraiture. Be sure to give it a look in addition to the gallery of video game themed photos below.
For more breathtaking video game art, take a look at this stunning LED-lit laser etching of Majora’s Mask,