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9th August 2020
Remembering Remedy's Co-Founder, Sami Vanhatalo

At the start of the weekend, it was sadly announced that Sami Vanhatalo had passed away.

Sami was fundamental in creating Remedy as one of the studio's co-founders and continued to work at the studio for over seventeen years, putting magic into titles such as Death Rally (as Graphic Artist), Max Payne, Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne (as Lead Graphic Designer), Alan Wake (as Senior Technical Artist and Art Team Manager), and Alan Wake's American Nightmare (as Lead Technical Artist). Like many of the original developers at the studio, Sami was also deeply involved in the Demoscene, and in the late-nineties, also worked for just over a year at Remedy's sister company, Futuremark, working on 3DMark 99, 3DMark 99 Max, and 3DMark 2000. He departed Remedy in January 2013 but stayed on the Board of Directors for four additional months before moving on to new adventures at Combo Breaker, among many other ventures. 

While we never had the pleasure of meeting him, his friends have spoken fondly of him on social media and of the little actions he had that had bigger and lasting effects. In his last interview, recorded with the Arcade Attack Podcast, he talked about being "a jack of all trades", something which was talked about a lot and confirmed by those who knew him. (I also wanted to share some of those memories from JamesMatias, and Mikko, who talked more about who he was.) While clearly knowledgable, the memories shared by friends painted a picture of someone who was more than happy to share tricks he had learnt along the way or helped connect people, with techniques and contacts still valued over a decade later. 

My thoughts go out to Sami's family and friends. I'm so sorry for your loss. 


The Control Series

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The Alan Wake Series

The Max Payne Series




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