West Cape Corporation had the last word in Yamato publishing during the production years when the Final Yamato Super Deluxe hardcover book laid the saga to rest in December 1983. The fan club continued its bi-monthly magazine, but almost exactly five years would pass before that most famous anime spaceship appeared in another publication. Once the seal was broken, a trickle turned into a steady flow and by the mid 1990s it was like Yamato had never left.
Another contributing factor was the generational shift. People who had grown up with Yamato were now old enough to write their own books about it, and the passage of years meant there was an entire industry to contextualize. That and a push of new products for the 25th anniversary woke a sleeping giant which now walks the Earth again.
This bibliography is a complete overview of books and magazines from that period through present day. A separate bibliography for Yamato 2199 can be found here.
Explore the other parts of the Legacy Years bibliography:
Part 2: Yamato Resurrection, Live-action movie
Part 3: Hobby and Game books
Part 4: Textbooks and Manga
Part 5: Leiji Matsumoto books
Part 6: General interest books
Part 7: Magazines
Part 1: Dedicated books
Space Battleship Yamato Perfect Collection Laserdisc set Guidebook
100 pages, Bandai Media, July 1990
This landscape-formatted book came with the LD box set for series 1. The first portion offered a complete cover-to-cover reproduction of the original 16-page publicity book from 1974, which was produced for prospective licensors and has never been reprinted elsewhere (see it here). Following that was an episode guide and a few pages of original artwork. The entire second half of the book was devoted to model sheets.
Space Battleship Yamato
Mechanic Big Picture Books
Entertainment Bibles 22 & 26
146 pages each
Bandai, Dec. 1990 & Feb. 1991
Bandai’s “Entertainment Bible” series had topped 20 volumes by the time they got to Yamato, establishing a nice mix of story synopses, mecha drawings, and descriptive text. Between them, these two volumes covered the entire saga.
Though primarily black and white, each book opened with a color section that included a single new painting for each Yamato story. The first volume included an exclusive painting of the hypothetical Andromeda II by mecha designer Kazutaka Miyatake, which mystified fans for years and later appeared in the Star Blazers Rebirth webcomic.
The cover paintings were by Kia Asamiya, who went on to do similar work for Yamato 2199.
Encyclopedia of Space Battleship Yamato
4-book set, Keibunsha, Sept. 1999
This was a dividend of the 25th anniversary blitz that began in 1998, a boxed reprint set of Kodansha’s first four “Encyclopedia” paperbacks from the Keibunsha series. Inexplicably, the two Keibunsha Encyclopedias devoted to Final Yamato were not included.
Space Battleship Yamato DVD Memorial Box Preservation Files
Bandai Visual, 2000, 2001, 2008
Compiled and written by longtime Yamato fan Hideaki Ito, these amazing booklets came packaged with the DVD Memorial Boxes for all three TV series and covered a wealth of topics in incredible detail, from the making of the anime to its many forms of merchandising. They have all provided valuable research for this website, and are highly recommended for serious collectors. The fourth booklet (far right) was a condensed version of the first edition, and accompanied the remastered DVDs for Series 1 in 2008.
Space Battleship Yamato Real Papercraft
96 pages, Wani Magazine, Jan. 2001
In the 1980s, “papercraft” books were popular among fans with a penchant for modeling. Books were produced for Yamato, Gundam, and other programs. Inside were printed pieces that could be cut out and fitted together into intricate models. The original Yamato papercraft book contained all the pieces you needed to build four ships and an IQ-9. This newer, more refined edition allowed you to build very high-quality paper models of Yamato, Kodai’s Cosmo Zero, and a Black Tiger from the first series.
The Space Battleship Yamato Chronicles
B Media Books Special
216 pages, Take Shobo, March 2001
This comprehensive volume is ideal for new collectors. It handily covered every production up to and including the Playstation games. Although more detailed information could be had in older books, None of them were as concise. Offered here were color stills of every character, spaceship, vehicle, and location in the entire saga, along with sidebar stories and brief coverage of merchandise.
The Faraway Planet Iscandar
212 pages, Studio DNA Media Books, May 2000
As a tie-in the to Playstation games, seven manga artists were commissioned to bring their passion for Yamato into comics. Each chapter is an adaptation of a key TV episode, and each artist interprets the story in their own fashion while also remaining loyal to the original. It’s a genuine treat to sample the individual flavors each artist brings to the table. It’s also noteworthy for containing a version of the Battle of Pluto by 2199 manga artist Michio Murakawa.
Space Battleship Yamato Guidebook
20 pages, Mediaworks, March 2008
This full-color pamphlet was an insert from Dengeki Hobby Magazine, published to commemorate the 2008 DVD box set for the first TV series, which included a new 1/700 Yamato kit. Six pages were dedicated to the model with an episode guide filling the balance.
View the entire magazine from cover to cover here.
Weekly Space Battleship Yamato Fact File Magazine
81 issues, De Agostini, October 2009-August 2011
The first Yamato periodical since the official fan club magazine made its debut as part of the runup to Yamato Resurrection. Yamato Fact File was a serialized magazine published by the De Agostini company. Their Japan bureau is well-known for similar magazines dedicated to Mobile Suit Gundam, Star Trek, Toho monster movies, and many other titles.
Each weekly issue of Fact File contained pullout pages to be placed in custom binders to compile a massive Yamato encyclopedia totaling over 2600 pages. Read a detailed overview of the magazine here.
Space Battleship Yamato Maxim of Love and Courage
128 pages, Shoden Co., October 2010
This book was an overview of the entire saga as described through its most memorable lines of dialogue coupled with full-color stills. Think of it as “The Quotable Yamato.”
Space Battleship Yamato Great Chronicle
175 pages, Glide Media, December 2010
Hideaki Ito, renowned in Japan as Yamato‘s pre-eminent researcher, wrote what has to be considered the best Yamato books of all time. Working closely with Leiji Matsumoto, he assembled an unprecedented volume of production materials from the first TV series and collected them into this gorgeous treasury. A special edition with a unique dustjacket (shown above right) was sold in Mandarake stores.
For much more on the book, read our exclusive interview with Hideaki Ito here.
Space Battleship Yamato Mechanical Illustrations
170 pages, De Agostini, December 2011
A massive amount of original art was generated for Yamato Fact File magazine, presumably at no small cost, so it was only natural that DeAgostini would want to give it some more shelf life. This large-format hardcover book (16″ x 11″!) contained a mecha painting from every issue (and three new ones) with comments from the artists. Released with a custom slipcase, this is the largest Yamato book published since the Final Yamato Deluxe hardcover from 1983 and earns our HIGHEST recommendation. Collectors take note: there was only a limited print run of 5,000 copies.
Space Battleship Yamato Ship’s Log
Quarterly magazine, Yamato Crew, April 2012
The “Yamato Crew Premium Fun Club Magazine” is mainly dedicated to 2199, but each issue has a little something from the past, such as vintage product reviews, historical features on Yoshinobu Nishizaki, and occasional words from original staff members. The magazine is available with a yearly membership to the Yamato Crew Premium fan club, but only ships to Japanese addresses.
Proud of Yamato Visual Book
112 pages, Office Legacy, May 2012
The title was perfectly chosen for this landscape-format hardcover, assembled in cooperation with Voyager Entertainment: cels, backgrounds, and promotional art culled from the personal collection of Yoshinobu Nishizaki. It premiered at the 2012 Yamato Party convention and became available for purchase a few months later at the Yamato Crew website. It is now out of print, but a sequel volume has been rumored.
Space Battleship Yamato
16 pages, West River Corp., Aug. 2013
This is easily the most unique Yamato doujinshi [fanzine] of the legacy years. The project began when film designer/manga artist Shinji Nishikawa (who goes by the penname MASH) posted his own retro sketch of Andromeda on his Twitter page, which became an instant hit. When another manga artist coined the term “Circa 1966” the Twitter feed turned into a jam project with contributions from all corners.
Anime/game artist Nobuyoshi Nishimura posted his idea of what the characters might look like if animated for Japanese TV in 1966, and writer/animator Yuka Minakawa created CG models of several other mecha, all re-envisioned in the earlier aesthetic (the complete Twitter record can be seen here).
This doujinshi was one result of this creativity, designed as a loving homage to the first Space Battleship Yamato Roman Album, covering a TV series that never was. Other results could be found on Nico Nico and YouTube, a variety of homemade videos that demand to be seen by YOU. (You’ll need to sign up for a membership with Nico Nico for most of these, but it’s free…and SO worth it!)
Space Battleship Yamato 1996 CG Calendar
8 pages, approx. 16″ x 24″
Voyager Entertainment, Sept. 1995
Voyager Entertainment released this calendar as part of Yamato‘s 20th anniversary blitz in 1995. It featured seven amazing computer-generated images based on scenes from across the saga, and a single page schematic montage of spacecraft.
See all the images here.
Space Battleship Yamato 2006 Calendar
7 pages, approx. 20″ x 30″
Tohokushinsha, Sept. 2005
The single largest Yamato calendar ever published, it includes six images culled from movie posters and other sources. The five movies and Yamato III each got a page, but the image quality was unfortunately compromised by digital scanning from pre-printed poster art. Production was by Wing Corporation.
Space Battleship Yamato 2010 Memorial Calendar
Yamato Studio, December 2009
Along with two other calendars dedicated to Yamato Resurrection, this was the third Yamato calendar for 2010. For what it’s worth, this beat a record set in 1978 when two Farewell to Yamato calendars were published for 1979. That HAS to be a Trivial Pursuit answer somewhere in the world.
See the Memorial Calendar from cover to cover here.
Proud of Yamato 2013 Calendar
Yamato Crew, December 20122
Measuring about 11″ x 16″, this fantastic calendar drew from the same archive as the Proud of Yamato Visual Book, reviving some of the best on-screen art from the production years.