Michael Brookes, games industry legend 

Tuesday, July 11th, 2023

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Three images: three adults with linked arms, a bearded avatar face, and a bearded man holding a huge shield

It has taken quite some time to absorb the very sad news of the sudden passing in June of Michael Brookes, best known as Executive Producer at Frontier Developments on the iconic Elite Dangerous: Horizons and Jurassic World Evolution. Michael was a treasured friend and Ambassador for many years who, as well as doing so much to support SpecialEffect, held the GSD Welfare Fund dear to his heart, having rescued his beloved German Shepherd Wellington.

Michael was a most wonderful, caring and much-loved gentle giant across the gaming world, whose sense of fun, kindness and incredible creativity and imagination will never be forgotten.

A larger-than-life character in every sense of the word, anyone who knew Michael will have their own, special memories. Just two of ours come immediately to mind: When Michael transformed from longhaired, bearded ‘Viking’ to completely hairless, all in support of SpecialEffect (image above, with SpecialEffect’s Baz and Ali), and a story which still brings a smile to retell. At one of the annual Fantasticon gatherings, Baz from SpecialEffect was busy talking to another Elite compadre, not noticing Michael patiently waiting in the wings for a chat. Baz (six foot tall and 15 stone!) suddenly felt himself being raised aloft. In one arm, Michael had swept Baz up off his feet, laughing out loud and demonstrating the immense warmth and mammoth strength of the man. We simply loved him.

Our SpecialEffect Ambassador team and the gaming world has lost one of its brightest, most imaginative and kind-hearted stars. We will miss him enormously. RIP Sir, we salute you. o7