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Virtucraft developer passes away

We have received the following announcement from UK development studio Virtucraft, notifying us of the tragic death of talented artist Martin Holland, who died suddenly last Friday, aged 35.

Our thoughts go out to his family, friends and colleagues in this difficult time.

It is with great regret that I have to let you know of the passing of our colleague and friend, Martin Holland, who died suddenly on Friday 15th August at the age of 35.

Though Martin had only been with Virtucraft Studios a few months, he was a well known figure in the North West development community having spent long periods of time at Creations, Genepool and Icon Design/Lothlorian where I first met and worked with him some 12 years ago.

A typical computer and gadget geek, he liked nothing more than spending his entire life in front of a screen making games or playing them. His unassuming and jovial manner hid an awesome talent for shifting pixels, that really set a standard which others could only keep up with, never quite matching, before he leapt ahead again. His encyclopaedic knowledge of games, almost all of which he owned, was always useful when discussing so called new ideas and innovations.

Without doubt one of the most technically gifted and natural artists in the industry. When he left Genepool I jumped at the chance to bring him on board having failed to entice him away from wherever he was previously. Another quality Martin had in spades was his total loyalty to the people he worked with.

It didn't take him long to settle in to his role here and surprise some of the younger team members with his ability to turn out first rate work on first attempt and faster than they had seen before. Those of us here who'd worked with him in the past never had any doubts about his ability, and gave knowing smiles to the young guns who now had a target to reach.

To lose someone with such talent and at such an early age, is a loss to the industry as a whole. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time. He will be sorely missed.

Brian Beuken
Managing Director
Virtucraft Studios Ltd

Rob Fahey avatar

Rob Fahey

Contributing Editor

Rob Fahey is a former editor of GamesIndustry.biz who spent several years living in Japan and probably still has a mint condition Dreamcast Samba de Amigo set.