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Robinson Crusoe & the War of Shadows


Book cover contest

Custom package purchased for $599

(including 99designs fees)

by Perrin1

Contest started Tue, 24 Jul 2012 05:50:21 +0000

Last feedback Thu, 09 Aug 2012 19:27:45 +0000

99% of designs have feedback

Client has no refunds

1. Qualifying round
Designers enter their initial design concepts for feedback and direction.
2. Select finalists
The client picks up to six designers to continue working with.
3. Final round
Remaining designers enter revised and refined designs.
4. Select winner
The client picks a winning design.
4. Select winner
1. Qualifying round

Designers enter their initial design concepts for feedback and direction.

2. Select finalists

The client picks up to six designers to continue working with.

3. Final round

Remaining designers enter revised and refined designs.

4. Select winner

The client picks a winning design.

This contest has finished. Congratulations to the winning designer vanessanoheart !

Top entries

Design brief

Organization name

Adaptive Studios

Description of business

Develops intellectual property.

Organization industry

Entertainment & The Arts


We would like a book cover designed for a fresh take on Robinson Crusoe.

When the original novel Robinson Crusoe was published in 1719, it was an immediate sensation. Though it didn’t have the financial results author Daniel Defoe had hoped for, it did make household names of both he and his titular character and also gave birth to a genre that endures to this day. It has long been thought that Robinson Crusoe was a fictitious character based loosely on the real Robert Knox. That was before Suriya “Friday” Dinijara’s diary was discovered.

"Robinson Crusoe and the War of Shadows" is set in the late 17th Century, a time of great crisis and discovery, a time when plague, famine, fire, and war give birth to Newton, Bach, Vermeer and Milton. While it borrows the names of the two central characters from Defoe’s novel, our story uses little else from the source material. Instead, our adapted series moves Crusoe and Friday into a semi-historical world of intrigue, where modern day espionage is gaining popularity among governments, kingdoms, and nefarious opportunists looking for the upper hand.

Having recently survived the Great Plague and the Great Fire of London, England appears vulnerable but its true strength lies in a small organization known as Section W (named after Sir Francis Walsingham, Queen Elizabeth I of England’s spymaster and a forefather of modern espionage) created to combat the evil organization know as the Circle of XIII.

To date Section W knows very little about the Circle of XIII. It seems that there are thirteen members at all times and that each member is given a codename from the Zodiac (Gemini accounts for two). Beyond the thirteen core members, the Circle of XIII controls a vast army of underlings across the globe all of whom are marked with the group’s symbol - XIII. Their mission is simple – to cause chaos, unrest, and turmoil through clandestine operations in an attempt to destabilize and weaken their enemies and ultimately take over the world.

Robinson Crusoe and the War of Shadows is a mash-up of an iconic literary figure known for his survival skills thrown into a world of espionage. It is a sweeping adventure of intrigue, daring thrills, wild chases, exotic locations, romance, friendship, and betrayal.

It is a world from which infinite stories can be told.

Book 1 is the first cover and we are proud to use 99 Designs to find a spectacular artist up for this challenge.

Most important to us:

Book art should feature Robinson Crusoe, Friday and Daniel Defoe as our 3 main protagonists (think Andrew Garfield as our disheveled Robinson, Armie Hammer as Daniel Defoe and Frieda Pinto as Friday). There is a love triangle here, with Friday in the middle of our aloof, reluctant hero (Crusoe) and the privileged, groomed and chiseled Defoe. The danger in this novel is palpable, as is the sexual tension.

Our protagonists should be older than kids but this should not look like another YA Supernatural Vampire Fabio book — The artwork should certainly indicate this is a spy series.

Branding the title "Robinson Crusoe & the War of Shadows: Book 1 (Libra)" in a cool, unique and appropriate way - see visual references as well.

Idea: Incorporate all 13 zodiac signs along the top, bottom or side borders

Idea: Indicate the shadowy silhouettes of the 13

Idea: Possibly include a compass/treasure map/parchment paper background or leave it for Book 7 when RC returns to the island to dive for clues related to the shipwreck

Idea: Possibly include a windmill to indicate that this adventure will be in Holland

Further requirements

Please see the attachments below. Visual references attached (with notes here below). We've also attached an overview and character breakdown on our 3 main characters. Good luck and have fun!!

"How to Train Your Dragon" image is the Overall best layout and use of title. This is too young for us, but at least in terms of layout and title, DRAGON easily works for design. You could easily envision substituting the sword for a scroll (for example).

In "Deadweather Sunrise" image, we love the imagery here, as well as the titling — imagine "Robinson Crusoe" replacing "Deadweather and Sunrise" and "The Chronicles of Egg" being underneath the D&S title with "and the War of Shadows". Love the balloon imagery and would be interested to see a slight/small reference to a windmill (since Book 1 largely takes place in Holland)

In "Time Travelers" image we really like the cool design and certainly love the title design and placement all in one neat symbol.

In "Grey Griffins" example, ee like the use of the circular clock within the title and the protagonists reacting to danger.

In "Lost Hero", it would be super-cool if at the top, we had a belt of the 13 Zodiac symbols, where Book 1 had the LIBRA symbol highlighted (as if you were scrolling over the belt of symbols and LIBRA popped up and was featured in the middle of the belt):

In "Alchemist/Magician/Sorceress" We like the use of symbols peppered throughout or on a border (as well as the use of parchment paper ala an ancient/secret treasure map, etc.)

Read full brief
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