This week saw the release of Syndicate, a reinterpretation of the 1993 classic now gone first-person shooter, not that I mind that. I bought it, couched myself and eventually found myself watching the credits roll after having played through an arguably lackluster campaign that failed to capitalize on so many great ideas. And while many would dismiss this moment, this collective of text slowly gliding past the screen, I stare, anticipating the names of the involved concept artists so I can jump online and look up their work.
In the case of Syndicate, my habits didn’t change. It looks stunning, as do the locations portrayed in it, be they the stylized areas for the rich, glamorous and powerful, or the crummy, gritty, broken “downzone” crawling with what the HUD only identifies as “hobos,” or the militarized zones densely packed with dudes armed to their teeth. Some of the people behind this look were Starbreeze concept artists Henrik Sahlström, Bradley Wright, Martin Bergström and lead concept artist for this particular project, Axel Torvenius, all of whom have united at Concept Heart.