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Coming soon is Starfield, the latest sci-fi RPG from Bethesda, the first game company that comes to mind when you think of RPGs. There is an interesting detail about the game that will be released for those who purchased the Premium version on September 1st, and for those who purchased the Standard version and Game Pass on September 6th.
The character we played usually had the same voice as in Fallout 4.
The biggest difference between Starfield and Fallout 4 is that Bethesda has chosen a silent hero this time around. But this was not always the case, the company says.
Lead designer Emil Pagliarulo spoke about Bethesda’s decision to include the silent hero in their upcoming sci-fi RPG in a recent interview with Polygon. When asked if Bethesda is heading in that direction due to the backlash from fans towards Fallout 4, Pagliarulo said that is also a factor.
Fallout 4’s voiced hero has been criticized by fans for having no dialogue options despite over 13,000 lines of dialogue. Despite this, it was revealed that there was a point where Bethesda wanted to give voice to the Starfield character and even recorded a few lines of dialogue: “We hired an actor, we got a voice, we listened to him and we said, ‘You know, this guy is very special'”.
It looks like Starfield’s designers wanted to make sure players were given the maximum amount of freedom to express themselves. It appears that Bethesda considered bringing in more than one voice actor, or simply working with a “more suitable” voice actor. Ultimately, however, Bethesda realized that it wouldn’t work.
pagliarulo, “We realized that the only way to really do that and let an actor be who they want to be is to have a deaf hero.” said. Pagliarulo continued to reflect on the role of the voiced protagonist in AAA games.
“There was a time in the industry when every character was voiced. It was an AAA event. We started thinking, “You know, maybe it’s not like that, maybe the fans will like the game more…” So we played with different things. There’s a big controversy in Fallout 4 and other RPGs if players don’t like to read a line of dialogue, the player’s response, and then click on it (another line of speech) and get it.”
“But the problem is that then you read it, then you click and you have to wait for them to say the same thing. So it’s not perfect either. Then we thought, “What if we just send a text message?” and it really liberated us. Starfield has over 200,000 lines of spoken dialogue, but no voiced characters. What allowed us to create such a great world is that we didn’t have a voice-over protagonist.”
Let’s see how Starfield’s approach works when it launches worldwide on Xbox Series X|S and PC on September 1st.