German studio Spellbound leads tributes for their former founder and CEO Armin Gessert – a development veteran of twenty-five years and founder of Spellbound Entertainment – passed away on Sunday Nov 8 following a heart attack. His distraught team at German studio Spellbound is leading tributes for their friend and leader, a man who founded the successful studio back in 1994.
“For many of us Armin was a personal friend,” said Andreas Speer, Spellbound’s studio manager. “We still cannot believe that he has passed away.”Jean-Marc Haessig, the firm’s creative director who had worked with Mr Gessert for fifteen years, said: “I worked with Armin very closely for more than 15 years. He was a good friend with whom I had a lot in common. Our visions of what to do to make our games great were absolutely the same.”Mr Gessert had put plans into place in case Spellbound were to be without him. Andreas Speer will now act as CEO with Jean-Marc Haessig continuing his role as creative Director. “We will continue following Armin’s goals, as he would have wanted us to,” said Speer.“Though I will miss him bitterly I will continue to strive to create games that Armin would have been proud of,” added Haessig. Mr Gessert had built a reputation over his twenty-five years in the industry, gaining prominence with titles such as The Great Giana Sisters and The Great Courts. His first work was the action adventure Street Gang which came out under the label Rainbow Arts in 1984. He founded Spellbound in 1994 and won further success with games such as Desperados and the Airline Tycoon series.