SIE Bend Studio
|Products||Syphon Filter series|
Number of employees
|Parent||Sony Interactive Entertainment|
SIE Bend Studio (formerly Blank, Berlyn and Co. and Eidetic) is an American first-party video game developer founded in Bend, Oregon in 1993. They were acquired by Sony Computer Entertainment in 2000 and are best known for developing the Syphon Filter series and Days Gone.
Infocom founders Marc Blank and Michael Berlyn, formed "Blank, Berlyn and Co." in 1993. Blank, Berlyn and Co. originally developed games and productivity apps for the Apple Newton but soon expanded to pursue the PC and console games market. During the expansion the company changed its name to "Eidetic" and Christopher Reese was recruited.
Eidetic's first console game was Bubsy 3D, released in 1996 for the PlayStation. The game was Eidetic's first experience developing a 3D game and the studio found it difficult transitioning to 3D development. Eidetic had eight employees when developing Bubsy 3D. The game was a critical and commercial flop.
In late 1997, a producer from Sony's 989 Studios approached Eidetic with a one-page synopsis for an action espionage thriller that would be a response to the successful GoldenEye 007. The synopsis was entitled "Syphon Filter" which had no meaning and it contained no story and characters, but included ideas for the setting and gameplay mechanics. Sony trusted Eidetic with the project despite Bubsy 3D's poor reception because the team had experience with developing for the PlayStation and an engine that could run the game. For the development of Syphon Filter, Eidetic recruited five more employees.
The development of Syphon Filter was difficult because Eidetic had no experience making a stealth action game. Moreover, co-founder Michael Berlyn was so morally offended by the game that he left the company during its development. Due to missing deadlines and making changes to the game's structure, story and mechanics, Syphon Filter was almost cancelled several times. Writer and director John Garvin joined Eidetic after the first prototype of Syphon Filter was created. Despite the difficulties, 989 Studios producer Connie Booth had great faith in the project. Syphon Filter was released on February 17, 1999, and sold over one million units in its first year after release, surpassing the expectations of Sony and Eidetic. The studio was purchased by Sony Computer Entertainment in 2000 after the release of Syphon Filter 2 and went on to develop four more games in the Syphon Filter series under the new name of Bend Studio.
In 2007 after the release of Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow, Bend Studio wanted to develop games for a different franchise and decided to develop a Resistance game for the PlayStation Portable due to similarities between Resistance and Syphon Filter. Bend made a demo for the game and showed it to Sony Worldwide Studios producers and original Resistance developer Insomniac Games and were approved to begin development of Resistance: Retribution.
After the release of Resistance: Retribution in 2009, Bend dedicated nine employees to a new project entitled Uncharted: Golden Abyss for the PlayStation Vita. When Bend first visited Naughty Dog to discuss the project, several of their ideas for the game were rejected. Eventually Naughty Dog was impressed with Bend's vision for the game and it was approved. Bend worked closely with Naughty Dog on the game and were allowed to use all assets from Uncharted: Drake's Fortune and Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. Golden Abyss was released as a launch title for the PlayStation Vita in Japan on December 17, 2011, and in the United States on February 14, 2012.
|2000||Syphon Filter 2|
|2001||Syphon Filter 3|
|2004||Syphon Filter: The Omega Strain||PlayStation 2|
|2006||Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror||PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 2|
|2007||Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow|
|2009||Resistance: Retribution||PlayStation Portable|
|2011||Uncharted: Golden Abyss||PlayStation Vita|
|2012||Uncharted: Fight for Fortune|
|2019||Days Gone||PlayStation 4|
- O'Connor, James (March 6, 2019). ""We insist that they are not zombies" – we talk to Bend Studios about PS4 zombie game, Days Gone". VG247. Retrieved March 8, 2019.
- Moriarty, Colin (September 8, 2011). "From Syphon Filter to Uncharted Sony Bend's Story". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
- Shuman, Sid (October 25, 2012). "Behind the Classics: Syphon Filter". PlayStation Blog. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
- "News - Playing Catch-Up: Bubsy's Michael Berlyn". Gamasutra. October 3, 2005. Retrieved March 4, 2020.