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Actor Michael K. Williams, known for his roles in The Wire, Boardwalk Empire and Battlefield, passed away on September 6th, 2021. Tributes are pouring in from Battlefield fans for his performance as Kimble "Irish" Graves and the impact he had on the first-person shooter series.
As a member of the Tombstone Squad, Irish appears in Battlefield 4 and his character carries significant gravitas in the story due to his emotional attachment to his squad. In Dunn's sacrifice, he refuses to accept that this is the only way to escape the submerged vehicle and is continually invested in the wellbeing of Recker, Pac and Kovic. Irish also starred in the short film Exodus, which sets the scene for Battlefield 2042, revealing that the soldier eventually leaves the Marine Corps before stepping up to become a No-Pat Specialist and therefore responsible for the relocation of climate and war refugees.
Moreover, Irish will be a playable character in Battlefield 2042 with DCS deployable cover and the APS-36 Shootdown Sentinel as his Speciality. Irish's passive is Veteran which riffs off Armor from Battlefield 4, generating armour buffs with every kill. Whether or not Irish will remain in the game owing to Williams' death is not known at the moment, and fans have come together to pay tribute to the actor's work and how he changed the series.
"He was a legend for FPS campaign characters," said ConspicuousBassoon on Reddit. "Turned what could've been a generic team member into a memorable addition, and seemed like such a nice guy outside of his work. A sad day for the entire community." Players are hoping that Irish's status in Battlefield 2042 will be treated sympathetically with a possible off-screen retirement for the character and any purchases of his legendary "Battle Hardened" skin will go towards a charity of his family's choice.
In Battlefield 2042, Irish has a young son, Omar, which was confirmed by DICE to be named for Williams' iconic character in The Wire. It could be that the developer chooses to retroactively age up his son as a Specialist in Irish's stead, preserving the actor's presence in the game without using his likeness and voice. Others like the idea of a moment of recognition for Williams on Battlefield 2042's soundtrack, like A Theme For Kjell.
DICE itself has expressed its sorrow at the actor's passing, saying that "his performances [were] second only to his incredible presence."
Today we mourn the tragic loss of Michael K. Williams. His performances second only to his incredible presence. Our thoughts are with his loved ones, and fans all over the world. pic.twitter.com/T49RqG5unR- DICE (@EA_DICE) September 7, 2021
Our thoughts are with Williams' family and friends in this difficult time.
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