Earlier today, the somber news was shared that Mike Berlyn, known for creations like Bubsy the Bobcat and as a founder of Bend Studio, has passed away at the age of 73. Not only was Berlyn integral to the creation of Bubsy the Bobcat as a designer, programmer, and writer, he also co-counded Blank, Berlin & Co (otherwise known as Eidetic) with Marc Blank, with Eidetic later becoming Bend Studio.
Outside of his work on titles like Bubsy in Claws Encounters of the Furred Kind and Bubsy 3D, Berlyn partook in a number of creative pursuits during his life from writing novels like The Integrated Man and Crystal Phoenix, to founding a book publisher called Cascade Mountain Publishing, to starting a light jazz band called Hot Mustard.
In the mid-80s, Berlyn founded a game programming company called Brainwave Creations, and while working at Brainwave Creations, helped co-create the game Tass Times in Tonetown alongside video game designer and programmer, Rebecca Heineman.
On social media, those who knew Berlyn took some time to share kind works including Rebecca Heineman who stated, “I found out that Mike Berlyn passed away today. We worked together on Tass Times in Tonetown. I will miss him dearly.”
I found out that Mike Berlyn passed away today. We worked together on Tass Times in Tonetown. I will miss him dearly.— Rebecca Heineman (@burgerbecky) March 31, 2023
From 3D Realms and Apogee co-founder, George Broussard, “RIP Michael Berlyn. Mike's early 80s work on Infocom adventure games was amazing and inspiring to me as a young would-be game developer. He worked on quite a few games after Infocom and helped pioneer PC gaming. Take a moment to read about the man.”
And from one of the writers and directors on Days Gone from Bend Studio, John Garvin, “Sad to hear that Mike Berlyn passed away today. He was a video game pioneer and co-founded what would become Bend Studio. He was always a kick in the pants, funny, thoughtful, intelligent, and a great human being. Rest in peace Mike.”
We join those in both mourning the loss and remembering the incredible work of Mike Berlyn over the years, and wish his family and friends well in the wake of his passing.