Announced

The Best and Worst Identities of 2013, Part 1: The Best Reviewed

announcement

Announced December 23, 201312.23.13 by Armin

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Let’s kick of this holiday week with some positive vibes by celebrating the best 12 identities of 2013 from the Reviewed section of Brand New. The worst will come on Thursday, followed by the best and worst from the Noted section next week, finishing off with Friday Likes’ most liked. No regular posts will be published until January 6.

Also:
Part 2, The Worst Reviewed
Part 3, The Best Noted
Part 4, The Worst Noted
Part 5, Most Liked Friday Likes

I realize I am starting off swimming against the current with a logo and identity that were not the most popular when first published but I still think this is a clever logo and idea executed perfectly for the mobile game industry and the legions of addicts who see the logo every time they load Candy Crush. It’s playful, it’s spritely, it’s regal.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Logo (1,036)

51%

30%

19%

On Application (1,012)

34%

45%

21%

Particularly when compared to the old logo, the new one hits a high note from the opening “O” to the closing “A”. What appears to be an unassuming wordmark serves as a practical and good-looking framing device for the materials.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Logo (913)

51%

35%

14%

On Application (921)

83%

14%

3%

Making a pork company look sexy isn’t easy (or maybe it actually is?) and lg2 has given F. Menard a typographically sexy identity that is still all business and swine.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Logos (1,251)

75%

23%

2%

On Application (1,241)

93%

6%

1%

Gorgeous illustrations deployed against good-looking slabs of meat, chunks of chicken, and filets of fish, all in a moody dark blue color palette made Blue Goose one of the best received packaging projects on Brand New with a 92% “Great” vote.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Logo (669)

52%

37%

11%

On Typography (675)

72%

26%

2%

On Packaging (661)

92%

7%

1%

As nice and classic as the Absolut bottle has been over the years, this break from tradition added a burst of visual flavor to an otherwise repetitive formula.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Execution (877)

85%

12%

3%

In the name, logo, typography, and mascot, Indygen was able to capture a genuine rawness perfect for SIM-card-loving young Southeastern Europeans.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Name (386)

46%

41%

13%

On Identity (399)

62%

31%

7%

On Toy (381)

58%

31%

11%

It was remarkable to find such class and reigned-in festiveness in what could have otherwise been a gaudily opulent identity for the largest shrine to consumerism in the good ol’ US of A.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Logo (1,915)

69%

27%

4%

On System (1,874)

82%

16%

2%

By numbers alone, this one should have been in the Worst projects of the year — also given my distaste for Helvetica-based identities — but the stark simplicity and broad flexibility of Whitney’s “W” was the best-in-class for the growing trend of minimalist, black-and-white, museum identities.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Logo (1,778)

24%

25%

51%

On Typography (1,742)

18%

39%

43%

On Application (1,756)

41%

25%

34%

One of the best color palettes of the year helped this deceivingly straightforward logo and typography stand out in a year where many tried to go flat and colorful and mainly just fell flat.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Logo (617)

71%

26%

3%

On Application (618)

89%

10%

1%

For non-profits with tight marketing budgets every brand opportunity and impression counts and with this verbose identity, Cystic Fibrosis Trust is always communicating its message through a flexible and striking system.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Concept (1,024)

79%

17%

4%

On Logo (1,014)

51%

38%

11%

On Application (1,011)

81%

16%

3%

The collage aesthetic had its revival heyday in the late 1990s and we haven’t seen much of it in the last five or seven years with more vintage-retro stylings to be found, particularly in craft brewery identities so it was a refreshing slap in the face to see the aptly named Feral Brewing Company embrace an energetic zine/punk rock vibe.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Logo (545)

50%

43%

7%

On Packaging (554)

87%

10%

3%

On Tone of Voice (489)

84%

13%

3%

This identity was simply too much fun. Something a lot of designers and companies forget to have or choose not to have. RE and Optus also managed to elevate some common identity and brand tropes, from the trend of bold, chunky typography to casual tone of voice to the always perilous introduction of a mascot. Here, the custom wobbly typography, cheeky headlines, and the yellow blob thing all contributed to a fantastically vibrant identity.

Poll Results (Total Votes Cast)

Great

Fine

Bad

On Character (1,314)

76%

19%

5%

On Typography (1,325)

67%

22%

11%

On Application (1,305)

79%

15%

5%

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