Bethesda have taken great care in recent years when it comes to hiring voice actors for their titles. We've heard a whole host of celebrity in the likes of Skyrim and Fallout 3, with Liam Neeson, Christopher Plummer, Malcolm MacDowell and Ron Perlman being cast in one or the other. But one area that has always been lacking for me has been the voice of the protagonist (which the majority of their games not even featuring one).
The likes of Bioware have demonstrated the power and increased connection players can have with the protagonist when he has a voice and personality that we can connect with. Sadly, the majority of games simply cast men with deep voices accompanied by a complete void in the personality department. I'd love to see Bethesda cast someone as a protagonist, but is that what players want?
Fallout 4 - The Voice of Our Protagonist
We're a while away from receiving any Fallout 4 news or seeing the word 'announced' next to it, just a lot of rumors and speculation. But looking at the state of current games we know what we don't want from the PC, Xbox one and PS4 title. Modern video games, or perhaps this even goes back to its infancy, are rife with examples of boring leads with uninteresting personalities and deep voices. I'm in the middle of playing Dying Light and the same issue is abounding in this game. I couldn't care less about the character that I'm playing as and it really does affect my immersion into the world around me.
Watch Dogs was one of the worst examples of this last year, though Ubisoft have continued to make this mistake since they left the likes of Ezio Aldatore behind. No news there. Though even he conformed to the stereotype as he got older. Aiden Pierce was insufferably boring though, with a personality that seemed to be etched out over the course of ten minutes. It's becoming more and more apparent, and I for one would have loved to play as Jordi Chin in Watch Dogs! The man was crazy but at least he was interesting.
But of course, some players would feel that casting someone as the voice of the protagonist that we play as in Fallout 4 wouldn't suit the world. I totally agree that our immersion into the worlds that Bethesda create hinges in part on the fact that WE are the character. We can project our own personality onto him at times...but then the character will act out in a way that is against our will and we feel that were this actually us we would have handled things differently.
This is a key element that makes casting your lead so much more engaging. If they're interesting, we acknowledge that they have a personality that is different to our own and are liable to make choices that we would have opposed. Therefore, I really feel like it would be an asset for Fallout 4 to feature a voiced protagonist, if this is not the case, Bethesda are going to have to increase the choice elements when it comes to making decisions in the Wastelands.
Seeing as it's Bethesda, I can't see them falling into the trap of casting someone boring or uninteresting as the lead. I have faith that they would be able to carve out a great character for us to play as on the game's release date for the Xbox One, PC and PS4. But the question remains, should it be an unheard of voice or someone we're familiar with?
I'm still dying to play a game where I'm voiced by the likes of Harrison Ford, John Hurt, Alan Rickman, Ian McKellen, Jeremy Irons or Jaoquin Phoenix. But let us know what you think about the idea of your Fallout character having a voice in Fallout 4 in the comments! Hold out for that release date FO4 fans, it can't be much longer till we hear some news!