Which voice actor for Wheatley do you prefer?

#1 Posted by Forcen (1859 posts) -
#2 Posted by Forcen (1859 posts) -

Here they are for comparison:

Old one:


New one:

#3 Edited by Geno (6477 posts) -

Sweet, I was just about to create this topic. I definitely preferred the old one. I felt that the robot should've been quirky and cute, which the first voice portrayed. Stephen Merchant's voice is way too deep and serious for the role. With some better enunciation and voice training, the original voice actor could've done quite well. Another voice that I felt could've fit was from the guy that did Alistair in Dragon Age. Fairly disappointed with their decision to go with Stephen Merchant (nothing wrong with the guy, his voice just doesn't really fit the role). 

#4 Posted by Atomasist (2818 posts) -

I prefer the old voice better.

#5 Posted by Forcen (1859 posts) -

On Richard Lord's blog he says that his preformance in the trailer is rubbish:

But I can only assure you that theres no way you will be dissapointed with the final voice - im over teh moon with who it might be. I think you are going to like! (and lets face it, mines rubbish) Its all in the bananas writing by the amazing Erik Wolpaw and Jay Pinkerton!

I liked the old voice, but i prefer the new one.
#6 Posted by Daveyo520 (7136 posts) -

C, they are both British enough for me.

#7 Posted by Landon (4164 posts) -

They kinda sound the same.
Why did they change the voice actor again?

#8 Edited by AURON570 (1680 posts) -

I actually didn't notice the difference (I guess because I'm not used to hearing the english accent), but I guess I prefer the old voice, but not by very much.

#9 Posted by Forcen (1859 posts) -
@Landon said:
" They kinda sound the same.  Why did they change the voice actor again? "
They never did, the first one was temp all along.
My guess is that they could not get Merchant in a recording studio before E3, so they picked one of their Brittish sounding animators.
#10 Posted by jkz (4068 posts) -

Stephen Merchent is awesome, and that's certainly the case here. He had a far broader range of inflection than the animator did, and is clearly a far better voice-actor.

#11 Posted by BaconGames (3607 posts) -

I prefer the older one simply because the newer one's accent isn't very consistent.  It tends to swim around and although I'd take either, I still prefer the old one also for its pitch.

#12 Posted by natetodamax (19229 posts) -

I kinda like the old one better. The new one sounds too serious. Diggin' the robot dude regardless though.

#13 Posted by FluxWaveZ (19395 posts) -

C.  I like them both equally.

#14 Posted by Soap (3651 posts) -

How can you guys like the first one at all? Sounds fucking awful like he's literally reading it off a sheet of paper for the first time.
Glad they changed it.

#15 Posted by MrWillhelm91 (11 posts) -
@Tuffgong:  Stephen Merchant is from the west country and that's his actual accent. Take it from someone who's listened to well over 200 hours of radio shows and podcasts he's been a part of  that this is what he always sounds like and he's not putting on his accent =]
#16 Posted by CowMuffins (1760 posts) -

The new one sounds a whole lot clearer. I think many people would have needed subtitles for the old one.

#17 Posted by remaininlight (19 posts) -

Merchant, definitely, because he's got the comedy chops as well as the acting chops. I can't stop thinking of his character from extras, in a good way.

#18 Posted by BaconGames (3607 posts) -
@MrWillhelm91 said:
" @Tuffgong:  Stephen Merchant is from the west country and that's his actual accent. Take it from someone who's listened to well over 200 hours of radio shows and podcasts he's been a part of  that this is what he always sounds like and he's not putting on his accent =] "
I certainly don't think he's putting on an accent.  In fact I wanted to know earlier what region he came from in order for him to have that accent.  It's not a fault of him at all, but the region and accent he has unfortunately picked up.  A love a lot of English accents but some can drive me crazy.  This is just not as good as I thought it would be I guess.  I certainly expected the accent to go even higher in pitch and British smarm.  Oh well.
#19 Posted by Special_K (115 posts) -

The new one, definitely.

#20 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6319 posts) -

I voted for Stephen Merchant, but i think I like the older one now. 
He  has a genuine naivety of the situation you can only get with a voice actor who has no idea what he is doing. 
Also the pitch. 
I'm fine with Stephen Merchant though, is all cool.

#21 Posted by TheMustacheHero (6655 posts) -

They both need more robotic like accents like GlaDos.

#22 Posted by Geno (6477 posts) -

A comparison video was just put up: 

I still think Richard Lord's voicing is more appropriate. There's a petition link in the underbar, you can also get to it here
#23 Posted by Meowayne (6084 posts) -

As a non-native speaker being able/forced to look past accent inconsistencies, I much prefer Richard Lord. As LordXavierBritish put it, the pitch and the naivety fit the character so well. But obviously, Merchant is no one to complain about either.

#24 Posted by Meowayne (6084 posts) -

You know Valve are awesome and community-driven enough that they might actually give you the choice of choosing between the two. That'd be sweet.

#25 Posted by yoshimitz707 (2453 posts) -

New one is hilarious.

#26 Posted by McGray90 (83 posts) -

Voted Stephen Merchant myself but in hindsight I think Richard Lord was better, I think however it may be because he reminds me a bit of Noel Fielding from the Mighty Boosh with a few of his lines, would've been awesome if he'd done it :).

#27 Edited by buzz_clik (7038 posts) -
@Soap said:

" How can you guys like the first one at all? Sounds fucking awful like he's literally reading it off a sheet of paper for the first time.  Glad they changed it. "

While I won't say he sounds fucking awful, you can still definitely tell that the original dude is reading it. Plus his enunciation is a bit flubbed here and there. Merchant sounds way more natural and pleasing to the ear for my money.
That said, I would also like some form of easter egg where you can change it to Karl Pilkington's voice.
#28 Posted by Scooper (7881 posts) -

I think the voice needs to be more synthesised and with wierd speech glitches like GLaDOS or the other personality spheres in the first game. The Wheatley character here is too natural a personality and the way Stephen times the script is not what I'd expect an AI made by a wierd company like Apeture could create. I wanted the character to sound a little arkward as if the character could be fighting against its intelligence chip or something.

#29 Posted by ThePilgrums (433 posts) -

If they never released that first clip I guarantee nobody would be complaining about Merchant not being a good fit. It's just silly.   
And I think the voice is fine as is. Maybe making it a bit more echo-y/robotic would be okay, but I think the whole point of Wheatley is to be more human sounding and easy to relate to. Making him sound like GLaDOS would defeat the purpose.

#30 Posted by RTSlord (1201 posts) -

hmmm, i dont know, to me they both sound kinda the same and i think theyre both good

#31 Posted by nohthink (1223 posts) -

Old one was funnier.

#32 Posted by ThatFrood (3418 posts) -

The first one had one of the most atrocious accents ever and I couldn't stand it.
Even better would be if he was just no there.

#33 Posted by JackSukeru (5990 posts) -

First one was pretty good, but I think he spoke to slowly in some parts compared to the newer one. 
I also liked the brand of britishness better in the final voice actors performance.

#34 Posted by Zidane_24 (742 posts) -

Love the Merch, so that's the way I voted. The first guy was okay, but I think going with Merchant is a better choice.

#35 Posted by Jimbo (10062 posts) -

First one has more character.  His nervousness / awkwardness works for the role.
I think they probably just shouldn't have shown it if they knew it wasn't their final actor.  It's hard to 'unhear' a character.

#36 Posted by Damodar (1544 posts) -

Is trying to pretend the original one is better some non-conformist thing or is it just a something-wrong-with-ears thing?

#37 Posted by FlamingHobo (4513 posts) -

The original voice seems slightly better in my opinion but they're both good performances

#38 Posted by afrofools (1336 posts) -

I like both, however, the one that I liked the most was the old one. 
I do remember on Valve's website forums that the elite portal community were saying they hated the voice actor's acting and that he didn't sound like he was putting any effort into it.

#39 Posted by wjkelso (71 posts) -

Stephen Merchant will be great! He's amazingly talented but still has a very natural acting/voice acting style. Props to Valve for managing to get him. 
Would be interesting to know how it came about.
#40 Posted by Djeffers03 (2545 posts) -

Stephen Merchant of course! The guy is great in extras.

#41 Posted by DCFGS3 (1054 posts) -

A bit more articulation and the old one would have been better. Another candidate I think would be cool would be Martin Freeman (from Hitchiker's Guide and The Office), as well as being a casual reference to Half Life.

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