This post is a part of the #RPGaDAY series for 2017 by David F. Chapman and RPGBrigade. For more information, see this post at AUTOCRATIK. I'm modifying per suggestions from S. John Ross as well as applying my own interpretations. Comment with your answers or links to your own posts!
Day 5 - Which RPG cover best captures the spirit of the game?
Let's not kid ourselves; this is an intensely crowded field of candidates. For this reason, I'm once against removing the superlative from the question. Even so, there's one piece of cover art that continually returns to my mind ever since I laid eyes on it, and that is the cover for Shadow of the Demon Lord by Robert J. Schwalb (Schwalb Entertainment) with cover illustration by Bulgarian artist Svetoslav Petrov.Upon viewing this cover art, I feel I know exactly what is going on in this game. There's an appropriate amount of dark fantasy-horror being conveyed here, but it's coupled to the high adventure I want from a game, and this game delivers on all those fronts. The aesthetic doesn't read grimdark to me as much as it does metal, which I think is the intent here. In a more standard fantasy setting, this artwork would be what I'd want for a "regular adventuring party goes into Hell" kind of vibe. But this is Shadow of the Demon Lord; Hell is already here, and it's coming to you.
I want to take an extra minute here and point out the one thing that keeps bringing me back to this cover. That dwarf. That dwarf is everything. That dwarf has seen some shit, and that dwarf is ready for whatever you got. When I pick up this game, I know I want to play that dwarf.