Tsutomu Nihei is my favorite mangaka.
What influenced Blame!
Great Sky River and Feersum Endjinn
Two English-language science fiction novels. The former is by Gregory Benford and the latter by Iain M. Banks. See Books that (could have) inspired BLAME!.
H. R. Giger
The influence, especially through Alien (1979), is apparent.
Go to blameSphere 2.0 and click “Inspiration”. You will see panels (from the end of chapter 24, volume 4) that directly reference Beksiński’s untitled 1978 painting. The painting depicts a field of buttes stretching to the horizon with skeletal figures huddled around a fire atop each butte. I noticed a lot of Beksiński in the color segment of chapter 19 of the same volume.
Works influenced by Nihei
An exploration video game for Windows. Released on Steam.
Abandoned video game projects
The project blog has some nice black-and-white 3D renders inspired by Blame! Updates were posted in 2014–2015. The Introduction talks about what gives Nihei’s architecture a sense of scale.
So, few years ago I started by trying to copy some of his environments. It’s not a very trivial task despite minimal style some of them are executed in. Even if some surface is composed from large plates with lots of white space, it still relies on sharp and tiny details to convey the sense of scale properly - human-sized doors, rust, leaks, power cables, staircases - they are always somewhere, and help a lot to give a clear visual difference between 10m high wall and 1km high wall.
TIGSource Forums thread. Updates were posted in 2016–2017.