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One thing that made games like BG and PST so great and memorable and made players emotionally attach to the characters is the voice acting that was full of character and distinguished one character from another in a very precise and meaningful way.... the voice of characters in those old games distinguished each character same as their portraits did.........what portrait did for your eyes, the voice did for your ears.....

 

PoE is a great game and a much larger part of the text in this game is voice acted in comparison to the above mentioned older game but one of the short comings of PoE is that the significant characters in the game, they don't SOUND 'SIGNIFICANT'.....if you get my meaning. Their voices and expressions don't have much character...

 

E.g. Minsc from BG games, may be only 5% of his lines were voice acted or even less but I am pretty sure we all remember how he sounded like even today and we identify him with that voice and expressions he used, such as 'Go for the Eyes, Boo, Go for Eyes!', same way Jahiera, Yeslick, Valygar, Kagain, Jan Jansen etc. or  Annah, Dakkon, Fall From Grace, Morte etc from PST, their voices and expression were remarkably different from each other or anything else we saw or heard in those game, so much that these voices and expression stood out to our ears and helped us form a unique and different attachments to each and every significant character.....

 

Personally, I would happily trade-out extensive but character-less voice acting for little but full of character voice acting....also the click command lines of controllable characters could have been more striking.....at the moment controllable characters' expression are kind of 'meh whatever', I can play this game with character voice completely turned down and won't miss much.....

 

I just hope that next game from Obsidian in this genre would carry more character in voice acting....voice and the expressions also identify a character not just the portrait and background text...

 

Thanks :)

Edited by Brimsurfer
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Agree, totally. That's pretty much what i meant by "non random character voiced by random voices" or something like that, in another thread. It's even more obvious when non human characters have, too, very common humanish voices. Minsc is a good example of a memorable voice for a memorable character, indeed. Sometimes, few inspired voiced lines do a far better job that plenty common ones. Origins of characters should have an impact on their voices, too. Like Pallegina. Voice acting is not bad in itself in PoE. Just, imo, it lacks... well, color ?

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The more muted, somber lines fit well with the bleak and brutal (grimdark?) setting. There are moments of levity, particularly during party banter, but generally I'm satisfied with the more subdued tone.

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Exoduss, on 14 Apr 2015 - 11:11 AM, said: 

 

also secret about hardmode with 6 man party is :  its a faceroll most of the fights you will Auto Attack mobs while lighting your spliff

 

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Not sure what you're trying to say here. I thought the voices for Pallegina, Eder, Grieving Mother, etc. were pretty memorable.

Edited by RingMachine
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I'm perfectly fine with the voice acting here. Don't tell me Durance lacks character!

 

Way to cherry pick from the 11 Companions one of those whose voice acting is excellent.  :facepalm:

 

Let's ignore that Sagani is bland as vanilla.  Or Maneha sounds like a petite girl, not a big burly Aumaua barbarian.  Or Aloth, who while not horrible, could use some more edginess both to his character and voice.

 

Zahau, Durance, Pallegina, Kana, and Eder are fine as is.  Devil of Caroc, while the Devs did a good thing (I suppose) by making her voice sound like it's in a tin can or something, her underlying voice (echo-iness aside) also seems rather bland, though I suppose that since she's from the Dyrwood, a neutral-ish American accent isn't all that far wrong.  Maybe a little more rustic flavor to her voice would have been nice, since she does supposedly come from an out of the way place.  I suppose that GM's voice is ok, but given that I don't particularly like her character, her voice does little for me.  And I'll give Hiravias a pass, given that I almost never have him in my party, because I just don't know how to play druids well, and find that they take the slot of a character type I'm more comfortable playing (i.e. a priest or wizard, or even a cipher).

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I'm perfectly fine with the voice acting here. Don't tell me Durance lacks character!

Only Durance.......he is probably the only memorable controllable character from this game and perhaps Pallegina but that's about it. Durance voice do have character and somewhat Pallegina's voice too but rest are just so so.......

Edited by Brimsurfer

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I like Minsc and Edwin too, but Baldur's Gate was quintessential campy-epic high fantasy where you expect to find larger than life characters at every corner. I like POE's more understated tone for what it is, and Sagani as a character, for example, is often misunderstood by players who are used to everything in RPGs being melodramatic. POE is also, for better or worse, a pretty serious game, so you couldn't have voice direction that gave birth to Jan or Kagain.

 

(I never thought I'd hear anyone praise Valygar, who is so forgettable that if he teamed up with Cernd everybody in the room would get amnesia.)

 

I think Devil, Durance, Pallegina, Eder work well with the character concepts. Aloth is a bit teen-Disney in both incarnations for me, and I'd probably have preferred a different style for Hiravias.

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It surprises me to read these comments, because I think PoE voice acting is stellar. It is one of those things that I thought "no one could ever say..."!

To each his own, I guess.

 

Honestly, some voices from BG were over the top and cartoony, and the setting was different. I am happy Obsidian chose a more serious approach. That doesn't mean that the voices lack character! I find them all extremely fitting, infact right now, if I look at a pic of Edèr, Durance or Pallegina, I can clearly imagine their distinct voices.

Sagani's voice reflects her personality extremely well. I suppose that if you dislike her "vanilla" tone, it probably depends on the fact that you dislike her as a whole, not just the voice.

 

One thing they could improve in PoE2 is to give the companions more meaningful responses, instead of those generic "Eh?" "Hey?" "Ah?". I think that peculiar/clever/ironic/trademark phrases would help the characterization a lot.

That said, the voice acting is fantastic, and to think that Edèr and Aloth are voiced by the same actor gives an idea of the amazing level of the people behind that part of the game.

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Edér, I am using WhatsApp!

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Let's ignore that Sagani is bland as vanilla.  Or Maneha sounds like a petite girl, not a big burly Aumaua barbarian.  

 

Ditto - the worst voices. The rest is top notch in my opinion, though.


It would be of small avail to talk of magic in the air...

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I always thought BG companions sounded like over-the-top, one-note caricatures with the voices to match. 

 

I like PoE characters and their voice acting. I think they have enough bite to be unique, but are more subtle and subdued, which matches the more subtle and subdued nature of the game anyway. I also think the voice actors match the characters just great.

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"Not I, though. Not I," said the hanging dwarf.

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I always thought BG companions sounded like over-the-top, one-note caricatures with the voices to match. 

 

Seriously, this. I always thought the BG companions were really overrated in every way.

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I liked Sagani's voice personally. It matched her personality. Not everything has to be over the top, like in BG. As said before, PoE is a less over the top setting than FR in general.

 

Sagani's utterly bland, vanilla accent has absolutely nothing to being "over the top".  It's just so bad that it doesn't just break immersion.  It NUKES IT with its wretched awfulness.  If she was a native of the Dyrwood, this wouldn't be an issue.  BUT SHE ISN'T!  She's a foreigner on a world with multiple languages, and she should have an accent that accentuates her foreignness!  It doesn't have to be cartoonish or over the top.  But it does need to sound like she's from the other side of the world, not the other side of the street!!!

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I always found Minsc quite annoying.

 

 

 

If she was a native of the Dyrwood, this wouldn't be an issue.  BUT SHE ISN'T!  She's a foreigner on a world with multiple languages, and she should have an accent that accentuates her foreignness!

 

Or she's good enough with languages that she speaks with no foreign accent when talking in Aedyran? I know quite a few people like that personally, you wouldn't guess that they are not speaking their native language. 

Edited by Ausir

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I always thought BG companions sounded like over-the-top, one-note caricatures with the voices to match. 

 

I like PoE characters and their voice acting. I think they have enough bite to be unique, but are more subtle and subdued, which matches the more subtle and subdued nature of the game anyway. I also think the voice actors match the characters just great.

 

This is a fair way to put it, for lack of any other way.  Even if one doesn't go over the top, you still need to have enough "bite" in the accent to make it at least somewhat obvious that the character is from another part of the world (where American English aka Dyrwoodan), not from another part of town.

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I always found Minsc quite annoying.

 

 

 

If she was a native of the Dyrwood, this wouldn't be an issue.  BUT SHE ISN'T!  She's a foreigner on a world with multiple languages, and she should have an accent that accentuates her foreignness!

 

Or she's good enough with languages that she speaks with no foreign accent when talking in Aedyran? I know quite a few people like that personally, you wouldn't guess that they are not speaking their native language.

 

I'm sorry, but you're just reaching to justify bad voice acting or rather a bad decision on the devs part to think that this Sagani voice really was a good fit ... because it just isn't, no matter how you try to twist things.

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Hell, I've met quite a few Americans myself who mistook me for a native speaker of English too.

 

Also, it's not a question of bad voice acting as such. If the devs wanted her to have a foreign accent, they would have specified it in the script, like they probably did for Pallegina. There was nothing jarring about her voice for me, and I've known lots of foreigners who spoke English (or Polish, for that matter) with and without a foreign accent.

Edited by Ausir
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It surprises me to read these comments, because I think PoE voice acting is stellar. It is one of those things that I thought "no one could ever say..."!

To each his own, I guess.

 

Honestly, some voices from BG were over the top and cartoony, and the setting was different. I am happy Obsidian chose a more serious approach. That doesn't mean that the voices lack character! I find them all extremely fitting, infact right now, if I look at a pic of Edèr, Durance or Pallegina, I can clearly imagine their distinct voices.

Sagani's voice reflects her personality extremely well. I suppose that if you dislike her "vanilla" tone, it probably depends on the fact that you dislike her as a whole, not just the voice.

With you on this in every word! BG characters did not have VA, they had one-liners, that were supposed to sum-up their characters in a few words. They were horribly repetitive and at the end quite annoying because of it. 

 

One thing they could improve in PoE2 is to give the companions more meaningful responses, instead of those generic "Eh?" "Hey?" "Ah?". I think that peculiar/clever/ironic/trademark phrases would help the characterization a lot.

For the reason mentioned above have to disagree with that sentence - in BG I wanted to kill my lovely sister Imoen on her 10th "Hi, it's me, Imoen!". Same with "yes, oh omnipresent authority figure" and with all other one-liners. When it's too colorful (like in BG) it's getting old way too fast. Neutral "yes" - is much MUCH better on the long run.

 

That said, the voice acting is fantastic, and to think that Edèr and Aloth are voiced by the same actor gives an idea of the amazing level of the people behind that part of the game.

Love VA and only complain here is that some of them (like the one for Grieving Mother) sounds like it was recorded with a cell-phone in the middle of the big crowd. But the acting is still perfect!

Edited by Mirandel
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I personally don't feel the need to defend bad voice acting in Pillars because I reject the notion voice over work was bad in the first place. I liked it quite a bit. The only voice over work I remember from the Baldur's Gate series is Jaheira, and I loathed her. I despised her voice and I detested her characterization. I don't really remember much by way of the other voice over work, although I do recall she had a nervous sounding husband, and he bit it before BG 2 anyway.

 

Sagani isn't particularly memorable to me, and I don't have a stake or a care in the accent argument, but I think the voice over work reflects her character, which is earthy and laid back. She does have some emotional lines associated with her quest, and the voice over work for that portion reflected a certain depth of feeling.

 

However, I quite enjoy the voice over work for Aloth and Eder. Durance's voice is great. I don't remember a single spoken line from Grieving Mother, but I think she may only have only had the sound of bells. I guess I do remember her saying something when selected or going into stealth mode. Kana was splendid. Hiravias and Pellegina were ably done, if not particularly striking. Of course, while there may be objective qualities to be found, it will eventually boil down to an argument of whether blue is prettier than red. I suppose I would argue blue until I'm red in the face.

 

However, if folks really want to compare Pillars to a game that had excellent and superior voice over work, they should use Planescape: Torment as the example. I still wouldn't have a problem with the voice over work for Pillars, but PS:T was surpassing in its sound, music, and... well.. its everything.

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bother?

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Was it a thread only about companions?

I thought so, but it's a forum. If you want to discuss other NPCs, other games, other examples, other whatever, go for it, Abel! I can recall... Lady Webb? I think it was here. I tend not to care that much about voice over work unless it's truly excellent and I find the character compelling. Anyhow, do you have examples you had in mind?

bother?

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No precise ones. I just remember i was a bit surprised when i heard a redneck dwarf having the same kind of voice than some kind of human aristocrat in Defiance Bay. I expected more differenciations between NPC in general. Not only companions. As i said, voice acting seems ok in itself.

 

On the other hand, I think people who speak foreign languages with no accent are not this many (i never knew any anyway). We have TV, cinema, radio, internet and planes to help getting used to an accent and try to speak with no accent. Sagani did not. Even less in her frozen secluded country where only once in a while a merchant from somewhere else came to talk with the village elder. If BG was indeed over the top, this does not disqualifies it. It was just a common example of differenciated voices between races and such. It was not taken as the perfect example to reproduce perfectly by all means in Pillars. World is not black or white. I'm pretty sure something exists in between.

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When I was overseas, I knew a girl who spoke English so well that I thought she was American at first. When she told me she wasn't, I was absolutely certain that she was HUMINT. I guess maybe she got to have such flawless and idiomatic English by hanging out with Americans so much of the time, but I'm suspicious of a local who just happens to be so fluent and is dating American officers. On the other hand, I do tend to be the suspicious type, so I was probably just reading into things.

 

If I recall, Bioware or BIS was pretty good at getting good voice talent on the cheap. ...Or maybe the budget was better. I don't know. Mr. Dowling does voice overs at Obsidian Plays a lot. Maybe he could moonlight at his own place of employment by doing accented voice over work for the next title. Should have heard him voice over the red neck dwarf (not making this up because of your post) for the Pathfinder demo Obsidz did on Friday.


bother?

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