Tragic cancer victim to live on as a character in his favourite computer game

James Payne and his Roman soldier doppelganger

A man who lost his battle with liver cancer is to be immortalised as a character in his favourite computer game.

Avid gamer James Payne, 24, was invited to see the studios where the BAFTA-winning ‘Total War’ series is made as he fought the killer disease.

James’ tour of Sussex-based Creative Assembly came the day after they announced the next release in their multi-million selling series, Rome II.

James Payne and his Roman soldier doppelganger

One of the modellers suggested that James could play a part in the game and his likeness will now feature as a Roman legionnaire commander.

Craig Laycock, of Creative Assembly, said: “One of our character modellers suggested that he could put James into the game in some way in his spare time.

“He took reference photos and measurements of James and created an absolutely brilliant representation of James that will eventually feature in Rome II.

“Although he won’t get the chance to see Rome II released James will live on in some small way in our game.

“Every time I see his character I’ll be reminded of what a great guy he was.”

James was the first person to play Rome II on his visit to the studio

Craig added: “In many ways, James represented what’s best about working in video games – crafting games that people enjoy and that stay with them.

“It’s why we all do what we do, and why we’re so passionate about it. He really brought that home to us.

“We’ve still not finalised James’ exact role in the game, but wherever he’s used we’ll be making sure it’s a fitting tribute to one of our most dedicated fans.”

Computer images of James Payne featuring in the forthcoming game Total War: Rome II

James, from Manchester, died earlier this year. His brother Stuart accompanied him on his visit to the games studio which was organised by the Willow Foundation charity.

Total War: Rome II, due to hit the shelves in October, is the eighth instalment of the Total War strategy games where players take command of a Roman army in a bid to conquer rivals.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here