Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Biggest Game in Town


by Al Alvarez // Picador

Illustration by Eddie Guy
Al Alvarez touched down in Las Vegas one hot day in 1981, a poker novice and a stranger to the excesses of the American game. Soon enough he was in the casino back rooms and musty bars of Las Vegas, meeting the flamboyant characters who dominate the World Series of Poker—roving gamblers who have won and lost many fortunes at the tables. Set over the course of one tournament, The Biggest Game in Town is both a chronicle of the World Series of Poker and a history of the hustlers, madmen, and masterminds who created the high-stakes game in America. With a new introduction by the author, Alvarez’s classic account is one of the greatest gaming stories ever told.

My original concept was to depict a city built on poker. I hired collage illustrator Eddie Guy to bring this idea alive. He collaged up the Las Vegas Strip out of playing cards and poker chips. But trying to depict the Strip was less than satisfying. We focused instead on the larger than life personalities of these poker mavericks. Thus, Giant Poker Guy.

Sketches:





Poker Hand Rankings (Because you got to know when hold 'em, know when to fold 'em):

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

...that royal flush isn't a royal flush. It's a 4 of a kind and a wild card.

H3NR7 said...

You're totally right Anonymous. Thanks for the heads up. I replaced it with the correct showing of a Royal FLush.

Ian Brian Shimkoviak said...

that Cowboy poker Giant rocks. Great cover in the end. Really fun.

eugene said...

speaking of building things out of poker chips:

http://www.designboom.com/weblog/cat/10/view/4929/liu-jianhua-dream-in-conflict-at-galleria-continua.html

Don said...

I would be very suspicious if I got that last hand. "Hm. Just a pair. Two aces ... of clubs? Wait a minute! Just what are you trying to pull??"

H3NR7 said...

A pair of Aces of Clubs? Busted!