Which voice actor for Wheatley do you prefer?
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).
On Richard Lord's blog he says that his preformance in the trailer is rubbish:
I liked the old voice, but i prefer the new one.
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!
" 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.
" @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.
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.
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.
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.
" 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. "
That said, I would also like some form of easter egg where you can change it to Karl Pilkington's voice.
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.
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.
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.
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