I just recently found the Odin Sphere Artworks book! I swear, I am in love with that thing! All of the art on display are vivid and clean. A large reason why I push so hard for VHEL's 2D imagery is BECAUSE of Odin Sphere, and most, if not all, games made by Vanillaware (probably the most inspirational company I've ever known). The fact that so much time went into developing so many gorgeous sceneries and vistas in that game, and then having to go back and forth to correct heights and redo gameplay mechanics, must have been maddening. To be honest, I don't know how the guys at Vanillaware keep in spirits considering the fact that they're games are in a niche category, and only earn just enough money to put a meal or two on the table. Even more so, the various people they hire really do have to be trained in a very exclusive manner; it's like conventional game development skills taught in colleges don't 100% apply here. A job at Vanillaware is pretty darn special because their game development process (most it being art and animation related) relies heavily on old school animation techniques (hand drawn animations). =P
Hopefully one day, I'll be able to match the artistry of their games, like Odin Sphere or Oboro Muramasa. For now though, I GOTZ ME AN ARTBOOK!!!11!!!