James’ Special Day story

James was just 24 and had liver cancer. James had been through an incredibly tough time at this young age and was undergoing chemotherapy to stop the spread of the disease when he got in touch with Willow. 

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

Craig, The Creative Assembly

A keen games enthusiast, James told Willow his dream would be to visit a gaming studio to see how the games are made.  And he knew exactly where he wanted to go – The Creative Assembly.  Thanks to the support of the team at The Creative Assembly, James travelled from his home in Manchester and was treated to an overnight stay as well as the much anticipated visit to their studio.

James was given a behind the scenes tour like no other.  He was shown around the whole studio, seeing all the elements of game creation – design, art, animation and programming. He became the first person in the world outside the studio to get his hands on Total War: Rome II.  During the visit, James and his brother were photographed and have since been transformed in to Centurion characters in the game itself – another first.

This once in a lifetime opportunity gave James something positive to focus on, a welcome break from the rounds of hospital appointments and gruelling treatment – something other than the daily challenges that living with a serious illness presented for him.

Spending time having fun with his brother, he was able to return to the young man he was before his diagnosis – carefree and happy.  This unique experience enabled James to create precious memories for his loved ones to treasure and he has now been immortalised in the game forever.

Since his Special Day James has sadly passed away.