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Infogrames Studios Limited (formerly Gremlin Graphics Software Limited and later Gremlin Interactive Limited)[1] was a British software house based in Sheffield, working mostly in the home computer market. Like many software houses established in the 1980s, their primary market was the 8-bit range of computers such as the ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, MSX, Commodore 16 and Commodore 64. The company was acquired by French video game publisher Infogrames in 1999, and was renamed Infogrames Studios in 2000. Infogrames Studios closed down in 2003.

Infogrames Studios Limited
Formerly
  • Gremlin Graphics Software Limited (1985–1994)
  • Gremlin Interactive Limited (1994–2000)
Subsidiary
IndustryVideo game industry
FateDissolved by parent, most of the staff now work at Sumo Digital
SuccessorSumo Digital
Founded1985; 34 years ago (1985)
Founder
  • Ian Stewart
  • Kevin Norburn
Defunct2003 (2003)
Headquarters,
Key people
Paul Porter (studio manager)
ParentInfogrames

Contents

HistoryEdit

The company, originally a computer store called Just Micro, was established as a software house in 1984 with the name Gremlin Graphics Software Ltd by Ian Stewart & Kevin Norburn.[2] Gremlin's early success was based on games such as Wanted: Monty Mole for the ZX Spectrum and Thing on a Spring for the Commodore 64.[citation needed]

 
Original Gremlin Graphics logo

In 1994, it was renamed as Gremlin Interactive, now concentrating on the 16-bit, PC and console market.[3] Gremlin enjoyed major success with the Zool and Premier Manager series in the early 1990s, and then with Actua Soccer, the first football game in full 3D; other successful games included the Lotus racing series; a futuristic racing game, Motorhead; a stunt car racing game, Fatal Racing (1995); and the 1998 flight simulator Hardwar. Following EA's success with the EA Sports brand, Gremlin also released their own sports videogame series, adding Golf, Tennis and Ice Hockey to their Actua Sports series. During this time, they used a motif from the Siegfried Funeral March from Götterdämmerung as introductory music.

The company was floated on the stock market to raise funds.[4]

In 1997, Gremlin acquired Imagitec Design[5] and DMA Design (creators of Grand Theft Auto and Lemmings). In 1999, they themselves were bought by Infogrames and renamed "Infogrames Sheffield House", for around £24 million,[6][7] Infogrames closed the studio in 2003. The building they latterly occupied near Devonshire Green has since been demolished when Infogrames Sheffield House was supposed to be renamed "Atari Sheffield House".

Gremlin Interactive's catalogue and name have since been bought up by Ian Stewart's new company Urbanscan.[8]

Key staffEdit

Gremlin staff had included:

  • Kevin Bulmer - Designer/graphics artist
  • Jon Harrison - Designer/graphics artist
  • Gary Priest - Programmer
  • Bill Allen - Programmer
  • Richard Stevenson - Programmer
  • David Martin - Marketing Director
  • Ben Daglish - Outsourced Musician
  • Ade Carless - Designer/graphics artist
  • Shaun McClure - Graphics artist / Art Resource Manager
  • Antony Crowther ('Ratt') - Designer, programmer[2]
  • Paul Whitehead - Tester / Designer
  • Ian Stewart - Managing director[9]
  • Kevin Norburn - Operations director
  • Patrick Phelan - Software manager/sound engineer
  • Chris Harvey - Lead console programmer
  • Chris Shrigley - Designer / Programmer[10]
  • Peter Harrap - Programmer[2]
  • Chris Kerry - Programmer[2]
  • Shaun Hollingworth - Programmer[2]
  • MicroProjects Ltd (Jason Perkins, Mark Rogers, Anthony Clarke)
  • Richard Hall - Production Manager

Video gamesEdit

 
Gremlin logo used on Amiga games

See alsoEdit

  • Sumo Digital: Game developer founded by former members of Gremlin management.
  • Martech: Video game publisher founded in the 1980s by David Martin.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "INFOGRAMES STUDIOS LIMITED - Overview (free company information from Companies House)". beta.companieshouse.gov.uk.
  2. ^ a b c d e "CRASH 18 - Gremlin Graphics". www.crashonline.org.uk.
  3. ^ "Planet Sinclair: The Sinclair Industry: Publishers: Gremlin". www.nvg.ntnu.no.
  4. ^ "A Gremlin in the Works". Bitmap Books.
  5. ^ "Gremlin Buy Imagitec". Sega Saturn Magazine. No. 18. Emap International Limited. April 1997. p. 7.
  6. ^ "Zoo Digital: Ian Stewart - Startups.co.uk: Starting a business advice and business ideas".
  7. ^ "Infogrames Buys UK Games Company Gremlin | Computergram International | Find Articles at BNET.com". Findarticles.com. 1999. Retrieved 2 November 2009.
  8. ^ "Gremlin Graphics presents: Bounder's World and the return of Super Cars". 22 July 2011.
  9. ^ "Gremlin founder Ian Stewart – RETRO GAMESMASTER". www.retrogamesmaster.co.uk.
  10. ^ @hardistymark, Mark James Hardisty. "Search Results for "chris shrigley" – The Gremlin Graphics Archive". www.gremlinarchive.com.

External linksEdit