In mid-February, we were contacted by the World of Tanks International (WoTi) Facebook community regarding an intriguing video that was originally posted on our Facebook Page. The video shows a handicapped WoT player explaining how he plays the game with only the use of his left hand, which immediately caught our attention.
This player was Marcio Simão da Silva, known in-game as death100016. Born on February 15, 1974, at first glance his story seems pretty average: a hard-working father of five, passionate about games and surfing.
However, his life changed completely when he was assaulted by an unknown gunman. He was hit by six shots: two to his head, one to his left hand, one to his forearm, one to his right thigh, and the last shot hit his liver.
Despite this atrocity, he managed to survive, undergoing numerous surgeries and beginning a long, two-year path to recovery.
Unfortunately, the events of that afternoon had some serious consequences. Marcio didn’t fully recover the movements of his right arm and hand, and he was left with a speech impediment. It was impossible to return to doing almost all the activities that he was accustomed to.
After his recovery, Marcio spent quite a bit of time visiting a local LAN Club/Internet Cafe with his son. At first, he was unable to participate due to the extent of his injuries. But as a spectator, watching his son gaming with friends helped Marcio reignite his passion for video games.
So, when Marcio had regained enough mobility in his left hand, he bought a computer to have at home and began the difficult process of teaching himself to play with the limited mobility he was left with after the numerous surgeries he had undergone.
Needless to say, we were excited to hear about Marcio’s story, and after seeing the video, we knew we had to meet him. So we sent our very own MA77 out to Recife to meet the Legend himself.
What role have video games played in your life? Or rather, why do you play video games?
In the beginning — back in the 80s — fun was the main objective. With their evolution, their complex stories, missions, and goals to complete, the competition has become part of the fun. You feel like you are the character.
Are there any games that were important in your life?
The list is quite big, but Sonic Wings (Aero Fighters) was my favorite game on the Nintendo 64. Doom, 007: GoldenEye, Perfect Dark, Duke Nukem 64 and so many others were my MVPs on Nintendo 64.
After the Nintendo 64, I moved to PC gaming. But I just watched my son and brother play Counter-Strike 1.6 and Need for Speed in Lan Game Centers because it was after the assault attempt. Counter-Strike Source and Half-Life 1 & 2 were the first games that I could play on PCs because I set up a computer at home.
In Counter-Strike Source, my favorite modes were Deathmatch and Zombie Escape.
As you mentioned that you were a Counter-Strike player and fan, do you have any idols?
Fallen. I have been following him since CS 1.6 with my son and his trajectory is an inspiration. With all the difficulties of the Brazilian scenario... seeing where they started and seeing the point that Fallen has reached, it's something that everyone should follow as an example of perseverance.
So I’m even more surprised that the Fallen Group has also decided to support us! As a long-time fan, it’s something that I can’t even measure… I have no words to describe how thankful I am.
Now that we know as a little of your history in the gaming world, what does “World of Tanks” mean to you nowadays?
There isn’t much to say; it speaks for itself. The dynamics of the game have captivated me, and the fact that I can play with so many other people on my team…. It’s made me continue to play non-stop since 2012. (Since 2012, Marcio has logged over 64,000 battles in World of Tanks!)
With all this change that has happened in your life, this love you have for games, is there any advice you would give to all the other players who are getting to know your story?
Do not give up. Despite the difficulties, I never stopped smiling, playing, fighting for life. Keep focus and overcome obstacles. Always overcome yourself.
In a joint action with the WoTi community, we were able to purchase the fully customizable KeyMouse Alpha with the World of Tanks theme by KeyMouse. This device will allow him to play any game efficiently, comfortably and accurately with just one hand!
But that’s not all! We contacted the Fallen Group regarding our fundraising efforts for Marcio. Touched by his story, they were more than happy to donate a ton of peripherals to ensure he would have the most comfortable experience possible while using his new KeyMouse Alpha: an ECO bungee mouse, an ECO Speed mousepad, an ECO Hybrid-Mechanical keyboard, and the Fallen Morcego headset.
Together with our friends at KeyMouse and the Fallen Group, we hope that death100016 will have the most comfortable playing conditions from now on.
To XanderP and IbianPahiva for all their efforts with the WoTi community (as well as all the amazing members of the WoTi community themselves for donating to the fundraiser for Marcio). Additionally, for taking the initiative to bring Marcio’s video to our attention in the first place!
And last, but definitely not least: all the amazing folks over at KeyMouse for their amazing communication, customer service, and attention to detail. Their designers spent hours ensuring that the custom hydro-dip graphic (which is quite a difficult process to fine-tune) for the KeyMouse Alpha would look absolutely fantastic.