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BOX=ART is a site dedicated to the history of video game box art/ cover art and the artists responsible for them.

Box arts are profiled from a variety of angles using high quality scans and with the intention of acknowledging the men and women who have played such a major role in shaping our gaming experiences.

Not only for video game enthusiasts, BOX=ART is for all who enjoy quality artwork.

BOX=ART review

 >Gitaroo Man

Box art by Mitsura Nakamura (326)

Japanese artwork, first published by Koei in 2002.

Designed for the European and American PlayStation 2 markets.

Also available on: na.

Entirely unique, childish and offputtingly creepy. A super hero, Frankenstein mash up of a cover for the PlayStation 2 generation.  

Gitaroo Man follows what is seemingly a consistent trend within the rhythm game genre of employing impossibly wacky and exaggerated looking individuals (see, PaRappa the Rapper, Elite Beat Agents and Space Channel 5).  

The series artist, 326, known for his ‘super kawaii’ or ‘cute’ characters would be drafted in on design duties for both promotional and in-game art. He’d come up with a cover brimming with childish innocence but devilishly laced with nightmarish robotic and patch worked details.

The artist’s self-taught style has always been shocking in its subtleties. The odd exposed brain here or randomly drawn genitalia there are mischievously woven amidst soft toy characters, and can be somewhat difficult to absorb.  

In comparison, Gitaroo Man’s cover was a more toned down affair, but at some level still maintains these difficult and unsettling juxtapositions.

The Japanese version would, surprisingly, simplify this effort resorting to lead characters only and a downscaling in background detail. Whilst remake, Gitaroo Man Lives! saw the same bombastic cover released worldwide. The series would end there and with it, for now, 326’s turn as a box artist.  

Other notable Mitsura Nakamura box arts


>Gitaroo Man Lives! (worldwide) PSP.

If you like Gitaroo Man you’ll love…


>Parodius (JP) Game Boy.


>PaRappa the Rapper (JP) PlayStation.

Sources and further reading:



Related BOX=ART pages.


>Um Jammer Lammy (worldwide) PlayStation.

Posted - 20/11/16, by Adam Gidney

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