@toowalrus: yes! It was so jarring for me in arena because of this. Not so bad in the anime
I'd assume Baker's absence comes down to a scheduling conflict considering all the things he's doing, he's voicing some of the most notable characters in a lot of upcoming games. Seriously his least notable role listed in upcoming games might be Two-Face in Batman: Arkham Knight, that's crazy to think about.
I can't really understand anyone getting too upset over this considering Mercer has already voiced Kanji before and seems to be a good fit and on top of that if @fluxwavez: is correct the game will still be using Baker's voice for a large chunk of the audio.
If they don't resolve the Elizabeth/P3 MC and mystery villain storylines in ultimax they'll have to come back to it at some point. I've always felt like the implications for the persona universe they unveiled in P4A were way too big to resolve them in the visual novel part of a fighting game. We'll have to see at TGS if they talk more about P5.
I never did finish Arena but I agree it felt they were trying to expand the universe beyond simple cameos/references in subsequent games, and I believe it was stated that Arena is canon, but with all the "alternate reality" stuff in Persona Q and the milking of 3/4 in general my hope is starting to dwindle for Persona 5 being anything more than "another Persona game." Not that it's a bad thing; I'm just a big fan of lore, and it would be nice if the Persona series had some. Persona 5 is still scheduled for Q4 2014 in Japan so I think it's a lock to be at TGS.
I don't think it's that bad... the new voice actors are pretty great from what I've heard of them from other games.
It's only really going to be noticeable in story mode and arcade mode, which for most people they will only play once. If you are playing it only for the fighting game then it's not going to be that noticeable.
Hopefully Persona Q and Dancing all night will just be the new voice actors. I don't want any previously used clips from the old actors to be in them at all.
This is a huge bummer. Kanji is one of my favorite characters of all time and Troy Baker, to me, is one of a kind actor (even though when he raises his voice with all his characters it sounds exactly like Kanji...that's a good thing to me). I trust Atlus and Mr. Baker is one of the more expensive hires now so I understand the changes, sucks but I understand it.
Tomokazu Seki is still Kanji.
What if it was Tomokazu Sugita instead? He's really good at voicing delinquent type characters.
Also I was the original voice of Naoto and now you all know my secret.
What are you talking about?! I was the original voice of Naoto, you poser!
If Michelle Ruff doesn't reprise her role as Yukari, I would be hugely disappointed at this game...
Again, Nich Maragos confirmed that the VA replacements that are now known should be the only ones. Specifically regarding Yukari, Michelle Ruff is reprising her role for future Persona products:
Same with Vic Mignogna who is reprising his role as Junpei Iori and Mona Marshall who is reprising her role as Ken Amada. The only Persona 3 related P3 replacement is Theodore's.
Does this mean that they are dubbing the Persona 3 movies?
Started playing the story mode this afternoon, and almost everything sounds a bit off. Kanji sounds fine actually, but I'm certainly glad Yuri is still voicing Yosuke. It gives me some form of anchor to hold me in when I start thinking "These are not my Persona 4 VAs!"
It's still kind of crazy to think that almost the entire cast of vanilla P4 has been replaced at this point. It definitely makes the P4 side of the story a little harder to get into.
Kanji's voice does seem alright though (better than most of the replacements), and his actual in-combat lines are still almost all Troy Baker.