Last year's most heartwarming game-related story was without a doubt that of Michael John Mamaril, the 22-year-old Borderands fan who lost his life to cancer. His friend Carlo sent an email to Gearbox Software explaining the situation with Michael, and not only did Gearbox produce a special eulogy read by Claptrap himself, the company also announced plans to incorporate Michael into Borderlands 2 as an NPC.
Yesterday, Gearbox held Community Day 2012 in Dallas, where fans could meet with the devs and just have a grand ol' time. During a panel with the Borderlands 2 team, an audience member asked why the company likes to go out of its way to reach out to fans, specifically mentioning the Claptrap marriage proposal video and the Michael Mamaril eulogy (check it out here, starting at the 2:46:40 mark). Details of Michael's incorporation followed.
Michael's NPC will be hanging around somewhere in Sanctuary, and every time you meet him, he will give you loot of rarity level blue or higher. Essentially, he's the guy you can count on when the game starts to wear you down. Not only that, meeting him will also give you the "Tribute to a Vault Hunter" Achievement, immortalizing the man both in the game and on the Xbox Leaderboard. That's pretty heavy.
I can't even properly put into words how incredible this whole thing is. It's just, I mean, wow. Thank you Gearbox, for keeping the memory of a true fan alive for a long time to come.