Founded in 2003, Sumo Digital has grown from the initial 15 people to over 450 across its HQ in Sheffield, UK; Art Studio in Pune, India and most recently, a cutting edge, third studio in Nottingham, UK.
As one of the UK’s leading game development studios, Sumo Digital is licensed to develop on all the major gaming platforms: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PS Vita, Nintendo Switch, Nintendo Wii U, Nintendo 3DS, as well as mobile and tablet.
Since 2003 our investment in the best tools, technology and staff has ensured Sumo Digital is able to produce quality products that are enjoyed by all ages, but most importantly are delivered on budget, on time and to the highest metacritic.
Our key development experience can be summarised as:
The sensitive, creative, and intelligent use of licensed IP has become one of Sumo’s core competencies. At the 2013 Tiga Game Awards, Sumo won Best Arcade Game (Large Studio) for Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed – SEGA’s bestselling console game of their FY2013, and Outstanding Leadership Award. LittleBigPlanet 3 also won the 2015 DICE award for ‘Best Family Game”.
CEO & Co-founder
Carl joined Gremlin in 1995 as Quality & Systems Manager and within three years was promoted to Studio Manager responsible for internal development. Following the acquisition of Gremlin by Infogrames (Now Atari), Carl was appointed to UK Development Director and soon after took responsibility for European Development including all internal development studios in the UK, France and Australia.
Before joining Gremlin, Carl worked for a bespoke software solution developer. Carl also spent two years lecturing in the syllabus of the Institute of Quality Assurance (IQA). Carl co-founded Sumo in 2003
COO & Co-founder
Paul’s career in the games industry started in 1988, writing Predator 2 on the C64. After graduating in 1992, he worked for Rolls Royce & Associates in the Scientific Software development working on nuclear reactor plant modelling.
Joining Revolution Software in 1994 as Technical Manager, he wrote the low-level code for the Broken Sword series on PC and Playstation. Paul joined Gremlin in 1997 to work in R&D and managed the creation of the cross platform development system that was then used throughout Infogrames Europe to enable reuse of tools and technology. Prior to Sumo, Paul was the Studio Head at Infogrames Sheffield.
With his technical background, keen analytical skills and customer focussed approach, Paul heads a production team which is vastly experienced and focussed on quality and customer service. Paul co-founded Sumo in 2003.
Studio Director & Co-founder
Darren is the Studio Director of the Sheffield and India Studios. Darren’s career began in TV, working firstly as a Designer and Animator for program introduction sequences and later, as a Cameraman & Editor on a variety of programmes and live outside broadcasts aired by a number of channels including the BBC, ITV, Sky News & Sky Sports.
In 1995 Darren moved into the games industry by joining Gremlin. Here, he worked on several titles as a Lead Artist and later, with Infogrames (now Atari), moved on to the position of Studio Art Director advising on several key titles including Superman, Wacky Races and Micro Machines. Darren co-founded Sumo in 2003.
Karl Hilton is the Studio Director for Sumo Digital’s studio in Nottingham. With an extensive track record in building studios and developing successful AAA games and technology, Karl is leading Sumo’s Nottingham studio to deliver high quality, creative and innovative games across console, mobile, PC and virtual reality.
After completing university with a BA in Architecture and an MA in Computer Visualisation and Animation, Karl worked at Rare Ltd as Lead Artist on GoldenEye 007 and Perfect Dark (Nintendo 64). After five years, he left to become one of the founding members and a director of Free Radical Design helping to create the very successful TimeSplitters series of games.
Karl was the Managing Director for Crytek UK for 5 years, delivering several successful AAA videogames for the PC, Sony PlayStation 3 and Microsoft Xbox 360 consoles, including the multiplayer games for Crysis 2 and 3. Crytek UK also contributed key technology for the CryENGINE technology platform.
Ash started his career in 1989 at Gremlin Graphics writing games for C64, he later progressed onto NES, PC Engine and the Top Gear series of games for the SNES, finally becoming lead programmer on the PS1 version of Loaded before leaving to join Probe Entertainment in 1996. Here he worked as lead programmer on the first two games of the Extreme G franchise as well as becoming involved in much of the shared technology within the studio.
In 2000 he returned to Gremlin (by then part of Infogrames) to work on the PS2 conversion of Wacky Races amongst other titles. After the closure of the Infogrames Sheffield studio he was amongst the founder members of Sumo Digital and went on to work on many of their leading products before finally becoming technical director in 2008.
Sean has been designing video games since 1993. His career path has wound its way through a variety of creative roles from Designer to Creative Director, on both sides of the developer/publisher fence.
He began his career at 221B, a small Sheffield indie developer responsible for a variety of 8 and 16bit games before relocating to London for lengthy spells at both Virgin Interactive Entertainment and Pure Entertainment throughout the latter half of the 1990s.
He returned to Sheffield in 1999 to work at Gremlin/Infogrames and has been a member of Sumo’s key staff since its inception in 2003, where he has been involved to varying degrees in most of the studio’s titles.
Sean became Creative Director at Sumo in 2011, where he oversees the design department and the studio’s creative vision both inside and outside of the industry itself.
Throughout his career, Sean has worked on every gaming platform across all genres and brings his expertise and experience to every opportunity that Sumo is presented with – from the games themselves to the psychology of creativity and its own peculiar demands.
Gary’s career began as a Programmer for Gremlin Interactive in 1996.
In 1997, he became an OEM Producer, working with all the major hardware companies to produce enhanced versions of Gremlin’s current and back catalogue games in order to showcase the manufacturer’s latest peripherals, graphics and sound cards.
Following Infogrames’ acquisition of Gremlin Interactive in 1999, Gary became a Senior Producer working on internal and external projects within the company, before assisting in the start up and running of the newly created Infogrames Leeds studio in July 2000.
Since that time, he has held Senior and Executive Producer roles at Runecraft, Blue Monkey Studios and Climax before re-joining his old colleagues at Sumo in 2006 as an Executive Producer.
Gary was appointed Development Director in April 2009.
Steven Zalud has been working in and around the games industry since 1995, although he fondly remembers typing in his first game back in the late 70’s. He joined Gremlin Interactive as a Producer and since then has held management roles at Infogrames, Criterion and several director level roles at Electronic Arts specialising in game and technology development, operational management and organisational development.
He counts himself very lucky to have a career where he has seen game development from an internal and external perspective, as a publisher, internal developer and as a service provider and gets to travel the world as part of the bargain.
Steven brings broad knowledge of all elements of the game production process, combined with a passion for building teams, environments and systems to deliver the most creative entertainment experiences.
Gary started in the industry back in 1997 at what was then Psygnosis, working at their Leeds studio on such titles as Wings of Destiny.
In 1999, he joined Eidos and initially worked on their sports titles, FA Manager, UEFA Champions League Football, and Eidos’ 2 official Olympic titles. Subsequently he was promoted to Executive Producer and took over the running of the Hitman franchise, being involved in the first 3 titles in that series. He was also involved in the Championship Manager series during his time at Eidos.
After brief periods at LEGO Interactive working on their Bionicle titles, and EA Studios working on Burnout, Gary joined SEGA’s European Development team and oversaw titles such as The Club, Crush, Alien vs Predator, and House of the Dead: Overkill.
Gary joined Sumo Digital as Development Director in May 2012, having worked closely with the team on Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed.
Our resident Omnichao informs us that it’s been a whole 5 years since the launch of Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transf...