Arkane Studio’s
Dishonored 2 is coming out later this year, and it looks to draw a lot of inspirations from the first game while also making a number of changes and improvements. One such change is the decision to give the main characters voices; in the original Dishonored, Corvo was a silent protagonist, but this time around he and Emily both will speak and react to the people and events surrounding them. A recent interview with creative director Harvey Smith has revealed the reasoning behind this change, which stem from a desire to both help direct players’ attention and let gamers connect with the protagonists like never before.

Part of this was inspired by their decision to include voice acting for the protagonist of the first
Dishonored‘s DLC, where you played as a separate character named Daud. In working on that DLC, Arkane realized just how powerful and useful a voiced playable character can be.

“We did no voice for Dishonored 1; it was OK, you can do it. But then we experimented with the DLC, giving Daud a voice. It was crazy how useful it was as a developer. You often get players to a certain point and you really want them to look at this thing, but they just don’t see it. And so sometimes you can have the character go, ‘Wow, look at that!’ [laughs]. That’s a goofy example, but it works.”
— Harvey Smith

On the other hand, Smith also believes that it allows gamers to better connect with the person they’re playing as. While a few may prefer a silent protagonist, ”
many, many more people” have apparently voiced their wish that the studio would have given Corvo voice acting in the first game.

“When something happens [in the game], and [Corvo or Emily] respond in a dialogue, you get a sense of the emotional reaction of the character. There’s a small percentage of players who always said, ‘Please don’t give the characters a voice, let me project myself’ But there’s many, many more people who said, ‘Corvo seemed like a mute machine and I really wanted to feel warmer about him.’ And so, when we started playing with Emily as a character, it was powerful.”

[…] “It makes the game warmer, it gives you more clues, it’s easier for the level designers. You really understand who they are.”
— Harvey Smith

What’s your stance on the silent vs. voiced protagonist debate? Does a voice help you better connect with the character, or does it make the experience seem that much less like you’re the one taking those actions? Are you glad that
Dishonored is switching things up for the sequel? Let us know in the comments!

Source: GameSpot

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Tyler Meehan
Tyler is verbose. He apologizes for that. Tyler "Alpha" Meehan's first experiences with gaming came from his cousins' NES and the Mario games that went with it. They were fun, but merely brief distractions while on the road (yes, they had an NES in their car. It was awesome, and he was jealous). Still, nothing compared to his Star Wars books. OR SO HE THOUGHT. His love of gaming truly began when he and a friend came together to beat the Nintendo 64's Mission: Impossible, a challenge so intense that Tyler bought his own console to facilitate its defeat. Upon being introduced to Ocarina of Time (an introduction that included, among other spoilers, the freakin' final boss fight. GEEZ, PHILIP), his lot in life as a Nintendo fanboy was sealed in stone. His ability to recall absolutely useless video game information served him well during the Pokémon craze, and helped him aid numerous friends in their own endeavors to defeat games like Majora's Mask and Kingdom Hearts. Those were good days. Good days... The Zelda series soon became his primary obsession fascination, but additionally he was soon introduced to text-based RPGs by one of his schoolmates. Discovering that he had a knack for the English language and a strong love of telling stories, he started putting effort into writing his own storylines. That all got put onto the backburner, though, when he discovered the Zelda online community, particularly The Desert Colossus's Hyrule Adventures 2, an online text RPG based in the Zelda world. He joined under the pseudonym of "Alpha" and soon became one of their lead writers, going so far as to join the moderator staff and, in a year's time, become the head administrator of the RPG. During this time, Twilight Princess was released, and he joined several other TDCers in posting their thoughts on the game - his "Twilight Impression Posts" lasted for several months and were well received by the community. Staying on even after the webmaster was forced to retire, he continued to provide occasional news posts and articles for the site, until it became clear that the site was dying. He turned his focus back to Hyrule Adventures 2 and his college studies, until the latter forced him to stop work on the former. Tyler graduated a few years ago from the Georgia Institute of Technology with a Bachelors in Computer Science, and now serves as a software engineer for a rather large company that he doesn't feel like telling you all about (he's a jerk like that sometimes). His love of gaming and writing still strong, he joined the Zelda Informer staff in early 2013 to write a walkthrough for The Wind Waker, but later began using his English skills to become ZI and Gamnesia's first dedicated Copy Editor. When not trying to get Brian to shut up in Gamnesia's group chat, he spends his time writing Zelda fanfiction, planning some original fantasy stories that he may or may not try to publish some day, and playing games on his Wii, PlayStation 3, and Nintendo 3DS. He intends to get a WiiU sooner or later, probably around when Pikmin 3 comes out, but has little interest in the other consoles currently. Also, he can't stand writing bios in first-person. Talking about yourself like that is just...weird.

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