In the wake of a horrifying family tragedy, 343 Industries announces a heartfelt tribute to a loyal fan that’s set to be introduced in an upcoming update to Halo 5: Guardians.
Halo is one of the most beloved franchises in all of gaming, and over the past fifteen years a passionate community has flourished around its genre-defining multiplayer content. Now, 343 Industries has demonstrated its appreciation for one loyal fan with a tribute added to Halo 5: Guardians.
Earlier this year, tragedy struck the family of Adam Bartels, a prominent member of the Halocommunity known as thecrzedspartan. An electrical fire started in the Bartels family home, killing Adam’s two teenage daughters, who were alone in the house at the time.
The story made the local news, and word soon spread to the Internet. Upon hearing about the horrible situation, the team at 343 Industries made the decision to offer a form of tribute within Halo 5, the game that Bartels plays frequently.
Studio head Josh Holmes made the following comments in a blog post published this week:
As a father, I can only imagine the heartache and pain caused by this loss. In the days following the tragedy, it was inspiring to see the Halo community come together to support Adam and Rebecca in a variety of ways.
Holmes went on to announce that the studio will release the Spartans Never Walk Alone pack forHalo 5, as a tribute to Adam and Rebecca’s daughters, Trinity and Lena. The pack will include the first animated emblem to be introduced to the game, and will be offered to all players as part of this month’s free update.
In addition, the team has added a ‘special feature’ to the Torque map. When players look up to the stars, they’ll see the names Trinity and Lena spelled out among the constellations, a subtle but rather potent tribute to the Bartels family.
Given that the idea of an engaged community is often directly linked to profit margins in the video game industry, it’s refreshing to see such a selfless gesture. There’s no immediate benefit to 343 Industries, but the show of solidarity will surely be warmly appreciated by the family in this trying time.
There are plenty of reasons to be cynical about certain studios and publishers, but the goodwill prompted by this act of kindness and video game tribute is well-deserved. Anyone looking to make their own show of support to the Bartels can do so via a donation to the GoFundMe campaign that’s been set up for them.