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Legendary concept artist and futurist Syd Mead, famous for his work on movies like Blade Runner and Tron, has died. He was 86 years old.

Mead had only announced his retirement in September. His career as a concept artist saw him work on projects like the aforementioned Blade Runner (and its sequel, Blade Runner 2049) and Tron, along with Star Trek, Aliens and Elysium. He even helped out on Gundam.

While popularly known for his work as a concept artist, Mead also left a mark as a futurist and corporate artist, working for companies like Ford, Philips and United States Steel, most often providing illustrations of his bold, clean visions of the future.

Mead’s influence on video games, from vehicles to architecture, is almost too great to summarise, but it can be seen in projects he worked on directly (like the CyberRace series) and indirectly (the Mass Effect series’ visual style owes a lot to Mead).

Mead passed away last night from complications associated with lymphoma, with the news announced by Autoline’s John McElroy (who has interviewed Mead previously).

Luke Plunkett is a Senior Editor based in Canberra, Australia. He has written a book on cosplay, designed a game about airplanes, and also runs

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