My biggest shock, totally dumbfounded about this.Norman's got a good point here. There's a metric crapload of art in the beta rules and most of it is really good. I mentioned in passing some of the pieces in my scrawlings, but a lot more could be said. For crying out loud, the credits include classics TSR guys like Easley, Laforce, Holloway, Roslof and Otus as well as the best new guys like Mullen and Poag. This is an all-star line-up! Though I must admit not every piece is a home run. I don't like the way Mullen does tusks and fangs, so the interior cover doesn't do much for me. (That cyclops in the background is super-awesome, though.) And the faces don't work for me on the illo at the top of page 13. Still, I like the vast majority of the art. Even some of the Easley pieces, and I'm not normally a big fan of his work.
How the heck is everyone not talking about how great, plentiful, the art is? If we were arguing / bitching / blogging about whether the art was rip off or homage, if retro style is alienating, etc. I'd be down. But dice? really?
I kinda wonder though, are all the studies of/homages to pieces of old TSR art, plus the cartoons, plus the adventure marginalia like in the back of the 1st edition DMG just a little too much? I love all that crap, but aiming specifically at beardos like me is probably a good way for Goodman Games to go broke.