March 28, 2010

Start Profiling: Intro, Voice Acting

Between birthday and just awesomeness coming out, I just don’t have time for all the games I want to play. This is frustrating, especially since I only tend to write about games I’ve finished on here, most of the time. I go for the “review” and things. But now I’m worried. As much as I want to, I may have trouble finding the time to finish DEADLY PREMONITION. I feel the need to talk about it. So here are some impressions. I’m almost done with the third chapter, for those who are actually in the know about this game. No spoilers or anything, though.

Basically, I find DEADLY PREMONITION incredibly fascinating. Also, I find it a game title I feel required to put in caps, but that’s beside the point. Here is a game that is, at times, so amazingly subtle and well-acted, but at others, is completely stupid, clunky, and ridiculous. It’s just kind of mind-blowing. During a conversation with Brer, he said he wanted to play it because what I was saying kind of reminded him of the weird-ass, obscure Russian PC games he likes. You know the ones: Ambition far, far outstrips budget, but they don’t let that stop them. They try to do everything anyway, with weird results. Add in an odd translation, and you almost always have a mindtrip. I feel like that fits DEADLY PREMONITION perfectly. That’s exactly how I feel about it. It’s mechanics way, way outstrip its budget, which is only enough to make a game that looks mostly like a PS1 game. The underlying soul of the game, though, is outstanding.

Let me tell you what I meant about subtlety. Agent York Morgan is amazingly well-acted. His in-game avatar is awkward and creepy. When his in-game model smiles, you want to scream in terror. But his voice actor is, honestly, amazing. He’s really genuine. I really feel like I get this completely insane dude. He seems real, because he’s being played as real, even in the completely fucked up scenario the game is putting him in. He does little subtle things, like raises his voice a notch or two around elderly NPCs so they can hear him better. He has genuine emotion. It’s almost mind-blowing to see in a game with shooting controls that are potentially worse than the original Resident Evil.
NPCs are similarly well acted. Some of the smaller characters are less well done, but the rest of the main cast has very genuine voice talent behind them. I honestly can’t decide if these are all very, very passionate amateurs who are really getting into the roles, or if they just hired people who were that good. I honestly can say I rarely see voice acting this good in a video game. It’s even more surreal that it stays good, even when they’re saying ridiculous, almost engrish-y lines.

Basically, it’s the voice acting that makes me sit there and wonder if all the janky, low-budget aspects of this game were on purpose or not. There is a grasp of storytelling at play here that the graphics and gameplay might make you think does not exist. It really makes me think I should be looking very deep into every aspect of the game, and try to find meaning.

Then again, I’m probably just giving it the benefit of the doubt because it is charming me. But still, I’m enjoying it, actually. I really am.

[…] mentioned in the last post that this game bit off more than it can chew in terms of systems. This is completely true. DEADLY […]

Pingback by The Blogtastic Blogfest That Is! » Blog Archive » Start Profiling: Open World Mechanical Systems — March 29, 2010 @ 12:26 am

[…] being “wonderfully terrible.” This can mean a variety of things, of course. The “wonderfully terrible” of Deadly Premonition, for example, is completely different than, say, the […]

Pingback by The Blogtastic Blogfest That Is! » Blog Archive » Hip and Horrible, Good and Bad, Panty and Stocking — October 30, 2010 @ 1:00 am

[…] If you want more long-form sorts of game writing… hm… let’s see… maybe my huge breakdown of why I loved Deadly Premonition would be more your thing? Also, while pictures are […]

Pingback by The Blogtastic Blogfest That Is! » Blog Archive » Your Post Is In The Past, On Another Website. — October 15, 2011 @ 12:08 am

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