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Why Voice Actors Matter

Kotaku: "I’d argue that the voice of a playable character communicates more about their personalities than their character design or in-game abilities do. Voice acting’s second only to maybe animation in terms of its importance for making audiences love or loathe a character. In the last few months, we’ve seen three prominent video game franchises commit to changes in the actors who voice their lead characters."

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Mr_Nuts1843d ago (Edited 1843d ago )

First Michael Ironside (Sam Fisher), then Stephen Russell (Garrett) and now David Hayter (Snake)

Whats wrong with the stealth genre latley :)

Anyway being serious, sometimes they matter sometimes they don't. Cole from inFAMOUS wasn't that bad when they changed his voice actor, he was only in the one game and the new one kind of sounded like him, I'm only more ticked off now <spoilers> because since they "killed" him off and are doing a new character why bother changing the voice actor in the first place.

Then take Nola North in Uncharted, if he was replaced it would be an out rage because he makes the Uncharted games great with his voice and motion cap acting.

Hayter leaving falls into the Nolan North side of this, especially if the guy has been doing the character for 15 years and then Kojima gives off one lame excuse after another about why he changed him. They should of changed the Japanese actor if they wanted someone who could do the motion capture. It would of been cheaper and you would of p***** less of your fanbase off.

pr0t0typeknuckles1843d ago

you pretty much hit it right in the park,and i agree with everything you say,i mean sure game will still be good without the original voice actor,but it loses some of the charm and feels like it lost a bit of soul,whenever i read comics or even think about batman i always picture him with kevin conroys voice by default.

Dr Pepper1843d ago (Edited 1843d ago )

"First Michael Ironside (Sam Fisher), then Stephen Russell (Garrett) and now David Hayter (Snake)

Whats wrong with the stealth genre latley :) "

I'm not a big MGS fan, but I assume those fans are feeling the same way as I feel about Garrett and Sam Fisher getting new voice actors.

Their voices are so unique/iconic that it's sad to see them go, and makes me wary of other choices they are making in the overall design (what is the real motivation for the change, beyond the motion capture excuse). That being said, I don't think the voice actor problem is the most worrying aspect of the stealth genre at the moment. I can probably forgive changing Garrett's voice if they maintain what makes Thief the franchise that it is (gameplay and story-wise). On that front, I've already given up on Splinter Cell.

Hadoukameha1843d ago

I will miss David Hayter.

ZombieKiller1843d ago

Even after yesterdays announcement about Keifer Sutherland I still think David Hayter is still snake. Kojima loves to troll. Up until I got to the big shell I thought I was Snake in MGS2 so just wait till the game comes out to see.

They're killing some big names here too. David Hayter Kevin Conroy and Michael Ironside.....wtf?

NovusTerminus1843d ago

Michal Ironside said he wouldn't come back unless he felt it was a good continuation of the character, he didn't want to do SP: Conviction if I recall right.

David Hayter is kind of sad, but overall, David Hayter is Solid Snake, I guess Keifer will be Big Boss, might help further seperate the characters. Though it is still upsetting.

There is no other Batman, that is all.

3-4-51843d ago

Yea I'm not into MG but I "get them" if that makes sense. I understand what makes them good, and Kevin Conroy IS batman, so I feel for the fans.

Decisions like these make no sense really.

The money they will save has already been wasted on something useless elswhere in the company for it to ever make sense.

Hadoukameha1842d ago (Edited 1842d ago )

I wonder if they understand how many people are pissed...?

GamerSciz1843d ago

Voice actors are a large factor as they help sell us who the character is. Nolan North is and will always be Nathan Drake. Even though he has played many of roles in games even lately he will always be Nathan Drake. Iconic characters are never iconic without the voice acting.

KillrateOmega1843d ago (Edited 1843d ago )

They matter because they contribute greatly to giving a character a personality through vocal inflections.

They were especially important back when the graphical fidelity of video games was insufficient in effectively allowing a character's emotional state of mind to be expressed via facial expressions. The general graphical quality has seen great leaps and bounds since then, but voice is still very important.

For example, take everyday life. What is one of the easiest ways to assess the state of being of another person? Answer: Their voice. From it you can gather information concerning their emotions and health.

If they're a smoker, their voice will likely be hoarse and raspy. If they're afraid or nervous, they may stutter or whimper. If they're confident, their voice will be well-heard and steady. If they're tired, they may sound out-of-breath.

A voice brings a very human quality to what is otherwise a collection of pixels and polygons.

leahcim1843d ago

matters so much... I even lost my hype without David

This is the first mistake of Kojima´s entire life.