UK veteran game developer and business director of Sumo Digital, Ian Richardson, has died at the age of 53.
Richardson was a part of the industry for over 30 years, mostly in business development and sales roles across studios like Rage, Europress, and Ocean Software. The last six years of his career have been spent at Sumo Digital as the studio's business development director. He was also an ambassador for the UK charity SpecialEffect, and helped that organisation raise significant amounts of money.
Over his career Richardson was credited on dozens of games, latterly including the likes of Forza Horizon 4, Forza Motorsport 7, Team Sonic Racing, and Snake Pass.
Sumo issued a statement to GamesIndustry in which it said "to all our friends in the industry, the terrible news this weekend of the passing of Ian Richardson has hit us hard. Sumo has lost one of its brightest stars. Gone suddenly and far too early, our thoughts are with his family and all that loved him at this time. The loss of Ian leaves a hole in Sumo, in the industry, and in all of us who were lucky enough to call him our friend. He will be greatly missed."
To all our friends in the industry, the terrible news this weekend of the passing of Ian Richardson has hit us hard. Sumo has lost one of its brightest stars. Gone suddenly and far too early, our thoughts are with his family and all that loved him.https://t.co/tR9Za9nMmCJuly 27, 2021
Fellow Sumo workers and other industry figures have honoured Richardson on Twitter, with many recounting what a kind, genuine person he was. Sumo business development manager David Dino called Richardson "an absolute awesome mentor and friend" who had "such an impact" in the industry. Marketing and events executive James Megretton said "I would not be where I am today at Sumo without his friendship and mentorship," calling him "my colleague, my friend, my Tour Dad."
Richardson leaves behind four children—Stef, Britt, Miles, and Isobel, along with his partner Nikki Thurston.