Mick McGinty, Legendary Artist for ‘Street Fighter II,’ Has Died

Street Fighter II wouldn’t be the same without its iconic cover artwork, and gamers have Mick McGinty to thank for that. On Sept. 19, McGinty’s son, Jobey McGinty, announced that the legendary artist died the day before. In addition to Street Fighter II, McGinty lent his artistic abilities to several ’90s games, making him one of the best-known video game artists of the era. Here’s more on Mick McGinty’s life and career.

A Nintendo Entertainment System runs Street Fighter II, with cover art designed by Mick McGinty
A Nintendo Entertainment System runs ‘Street Fighter II’ | Tengku Bahar/Getty Images

Mick McGinty’s son, Jobey McGinty, announced Mick’s death in a touching post

In a heartfelt tribute on Caring Bridge, Jobey revealed that McGinty had died.

“At 10:14 p.m. on Saturday the 18th, my Dad’s greatest dream came true, as he left us to be with the Savior that he was so giddy to meet in person for these past six weeks,” Jobey wrote. “If only we could see the look on his face and the tears of joy streaming down his face. Oh, what a beautiful sight that would be.”

Jobey went on to share some memories of his father, praising McGinty for his artistic talents. He continued:

My Dad was an incredible artist, as everyone knows. And in true artist fashion, he was also never satisfied with his final work. Just a couple weeks ago, he said he needed ‘just one more hour on a few pieces’ in order to ‘really finish them.’ We all knew that just wasn’t true, though. Dad would always come visit our house, see some of the paintings he did for us over the years, and would put his nose about an inch from it and say, ‘y’know, Jobe, I wish I would have made those blues a little deeper,’ or ‘you know I’d love to just splash a little more shadows on that tree,’ or ‘that really needs a fresh coat of varnish on it.’

When news broke of McGinty’s death, gaming fans everywhere took to social media to honor him. Many shared some of his pieces and vowed to keep his legacy known forever.

“RIP Mick Mcginty! He had some of the most iconic artwork of my generation!” one Twitter user wrote. “His work lives on forever!”

“Rest in peace to Mick McGinty, the great artist behind some of the most vivid and ubiquitous images in early ’90s video games,” another person added.

Mick McGinty did cover art for ‘Street Fighter II,’ ‘Streets of Rage 2,’ and more ’90s video games

McGinty is most known today for his work on Street Fighter II, as he created the famous cover art for the game’s western version. The artwork features characters Chun-Li, Ryu, and Blanka. Beyond Street Fighter II, he also worked on games like Streets of Rage 2 and 3, Shining Force, Kid Chameleon, and plenty more.

A lengthy Twitter thread complied by VGDensetsu showcases McGinty’s work. Some of the other video game titles include Traysia and Chicago Syndicate.

According to McGinty’s website, the illustrator and fine art painter “has produced visuals for the NFL, Universal Studios, and nearly all movie studios and video game producers as well as almost all of the major advertising agencies.”

His film work includes posters for Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, Curse of the Pink Panther, and more. McGinty mostly moved away from video games since Street Fighter II, but his website showcases other styles like landscapes and still life portraits.

Street Fighter fans who would like to hear more from McGinty can check out Oliver Harper’s upcoming Street Fighter II documentary, Here Comes A New Challenger. According to Indiegogo, where fans can back the film, it will “detail the origins of the gaming phenomena that is Street Fighter II and how it impacted the lives of kids and teenagers worldwide.” McGinty serves as one of the film’s interview subjects.

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