Above and beyond
For all those fans out there that think they are just flinging their brilliant suggestions and rage-filled comments at developers' brick walls, be assured, they are listening. Sure, comments like "you guys suck," get filtered out, but genuine, constructive criticism, comments, and pleas don't always fall on deaf ears.
Matter of fact, sometimes developers go above and beyond the requests that they get from fans. It's hard to imagine how they even manage to fit these requests into their regular day-to-day schedules. But they do it. And they do it for you. Because you asked. These are some of the greatest examples of developers being absolutely awesome, just because they (seemingly) appreciate their fans.
Destiny's Ice Bucket Challenge
Around August 2014, you couldn't turn on a television, open a social media site, or go anywhere near the world wide web without someone mentioning the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Essentially, everyone in the entire world is helping to raise awareness for the neurodegenerative disease Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis by pouring buckets of ice water over their heads, then nominating others to do the same and donate to charity. And it just so happens that Destiny's Ghost got called out by fans.
The developers at Bungie could have easily just donated cash to the charity (or ignored the nomination entirely), but they're not that kind of team. Bungie went all out in this video, pulling off one of the most amazing challenge videos to date. The Ghost got soaked by a bucket thrown all the way from the moon!
GTA 5 voice actor tells fan to "Go F*** yourself"
No, this isn't some kind of controversy in which a person involved in creating a video game flipped his lid and spouted obscenities at an overzealous fan. This fan was literally asking for it. During New York Comic Con 2013, Steven Ogg (the voice of GTA V's psychopath killer Trevor) sat on a panel with his fellow actors. Fans of the series were welcomed to a microphone to ask the voice actors questions, resulting in an odd request with a hilarious outcome.
As one fan stepped up to the mic, he asked the real-life Trevor if he could swear at him. After a moment of thought, Steven Ogg stood up, set a stride that would make a person think they were about to be murdered, grabbed the fan's camera and screamed, "GO FUCK YOURSELF!" Truly a surreal experience. You'd never think being a victim of Trevor's rage would be so cool.
Robin Williams dedications
Not one person who grew up with movies like Aladdin and Mrs. Doubtfire wasn't saddened by the news of Robin Williams' tragic passing. He was a tremendous actor and inspiration, plus he was a huge fan of gaming. He and his daughter Zelda Williams (named after Princess Zelda herself) starred in several Zelda game commercials, and he played World of Warcraft a whole lot.
In order to honor the actor's life, many gamers immediately began petitions for developers to immortalize him in the games he loved. Now it seems that Nintendo will be making a place for him in the upcoming Zelda title for the Wii U, and the folks at Blizzard have already integrated their tribute to Robin in the Warlords of Draenor beta.
Dinosaurs in Battlefield 3
You wouldn't normally think a huge developer like DICE would have such a keen sense of humor, especially since it makes militaristic war games. But apparently, the developers like their inside jokes. A few years before the release of Battlefield 3, rival modern military shooter publisher Activision asked the gamers on 4chan why Modern Warfare 2 didn't sell well on PC. The answer was unanimous: There were no dinosaurs.
Wouldn't you know it, in one of the early gameplay reveals for Battlefield 3, it seemed the developers thought they'd give PC gamers exactly what they asked for. Dinosaurs in Battlefield 3? You bet. A T-Rex even shows up in the first few seconds of the trailer. And just to solidify that the jab was intentional, one BF3 developer tweeted about it. Mega burn!
Tali and Garrus became romance options
Bioware's games are about developing relationships with the characters just as much as they are about saving the world from unrelenting evil forces. When fans of the original Mass Effect got to know their not-so-human counterparts Tali'Zorah and the Turian stud Garrus, a huge group of fans begged the development team to allow them to take their relationships to the next level in the sequel. I mean, who could blame them? There's just no resisting Garrus' pouty mandibles.
So, what did Bioware do? Well, it let love blossom. It broke down intergalactic racial barriers and made it A-OK for the human species to procreate with the crab-faced alien and the helmet wearing space engineer living on the Normandy. This just goes to show, Bioware is willing to go to great lengths to keep its fans happy, extra-terrestrial / human anatomy inconsistencies be damned.
Borderlands 2 Claptrap eulogy
Not every request that comes to a game developer is goofy, or self righteous in nature. Some of them convey a true love for a game. One such request came from a Borderlands fan named Carlo. He and his friend Michael Mamaril were huge Borderlands fans, and when Michael passed due to a battle with cancer, Carlo asked the team at Gearbox to honor him with a special eulogy by Borderlands' quirky bot Claptrap.
The Gearbox team were so touched by the request that they not only gave a heartwarming statement from his favorite Borderlands character, they immortalized Michael in the game as an NPC. And not just a NPC walking around the wastelands doing nothing. You get quests and buy items from Michael Mamaril and everything. Gearbox truly went above and beyond in this tribute.
Techland's tribute to BadWolfGaming
Putting a smile on someone's face is one of the best ways to help with grief, and that's what Techland did for everyone that loved one of their greatest fans. David Acott ran a personal YouTube channel called BadWolfGaming where he made funny videos and montages of his exploits in the games he loved. Around the time Techland's Dying Light was being released, and as David was planning on doing a series of zombie killing videos, the YouTuber got some bad news: He had developed a tumor in his abdomen - the result of a complication from a previous surgery. Shortly after his announcement to his fans, David passed.
David's brother and mother reached out to Techland to notify the developer of David's passing and let the game makers know how much he enjoyed their game. The developers were so touched by their story that they decided to bring David's mother and brother to the Techland studio in Poland to help them create an in-game tribute to BadWolf. The team created a graffiti mural in honor of David so that he could live forever in the game he loved. Our hat's off to you, Techland, for such a wonderful gesture.
What were your favorites?
Developers are always doing crazy and awesome things for their communities. Did anything developer efforts stick out to you? Ever been impressed with a game maker's dedication to fans? Let me know what your favorite amazing moments are in the comments below.
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