It's the kind of heart-felt sentiment that warms the soul, though we wish it could've happened under better circumstances: Gearbox Software is placing a fan of the game into the upcoming Borderlands 2 game as one of the NPC characters, but he won't be able to see it - the NPC is being made in his memory. The studio has also prepared a eulogy for him, via the antics of the much beloved ClapTrap.
It all started with a fan named Carlo who wanted to honor his friend, Michael John Mamaril. Michael has sadly passed away due to cancer at the young age of 22. Both Carlo and Michael were huge fans of the Gearbox title Borderlands, an exceptional title which had both gamers pouring many hours of gameplay into it. Thus, Carlo decided - longshot or not - that he would send Gearbox and email asking if they could get the Claptrap voice actor to perform a short, in-character eulogy to honor his friend.
When Gearbox recieved the email, it was spread around the studio quickly - not only were they willing to oblige the request, but they were going to add Michael Maramil into Borderlands 2 as an NPC. It's a great example of a studio going out of their way in respect for a fan, and we applaud them in their response to the request.
Here's the heart-felt Claptrap eulogy, and a memento from Gearbox, in what is a touching message from the developers:
Carlo couldn't be reached for comment, but we imagine he's happy with the exceptional response from Gearbox Studios. Anticipation is high for Borderlands 2, with sleek cel-shaded graphics, better storyline streaming and your general package of ridiculous, co-op friendly fun. Check out the Borderlands 2 teaser trailer, and next year you'll be able to see the NPC with your own eyes.
Gearbox haven't revealed yet who the Michael Mamaril NPC will be, but it's a safe bet the role will be one respectful to his family, memory and friends. The NPC will be part of the on-disc material, and as Gearbox said, 'Though he may be gone, he will live on forever in the Borderlands.' We look forward to seeing Michael in the game, where he'll spend his time perhaps helping us through some quests ourselves.
We here at Game Rant offer our condolences to family and friends of Michael John Mamaril.
Borderlands 2 is set for release in 2012 for PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.