The Watchmaker: Voice Acting

So, I’ve been talking to the characters a lot. It seems like the designers imagined this as Step 1, because I keep getting hints for puzzles I’ve already solved, often by resorting to hints. The fact that I’d rather look up hints than talk to all the characters says something about the game. The voice acting is a big part of it, but really, not all of it is that bad. Here’s a list of the characters, ranked from best voice acting to worst.

Victoria Conroy, player character and ostensible lawyer: Not too bad, really. The worst I can say about her is that her delivery is a bit flat, especially when discussing ridiculous things like ley lines.

Greta Snyder, the caretaker: Stern and disapproving, this is basically a one-note performance. But she hits that one note competently and consistently, and in a way that’s consistent with the lines she’s been given.

Stephen Klausman, the cook: His characterization consists mainly of a thick accent, but in a way that I’d call fairly typical for point-and-click adventure games. At least his line readings are decent, and he expresses emotion at appropriate moments, if not all that convincingly. Of special note: One of his voice lines, in a sequence where you distract him so you can steal his keys, appears to be still in the original Italian. From what little I heard, I suspect the Italian voice actor is a lot better than the English one.

Christopher Anderson, the supervisor: Has some weird readings. I feel like his lines were written for a very specific characterization, a little posh and condescending, and the actor just didn’t understand that at all and went for Mr. Friendly instead.

Raul Hernandez, the gardener: Like the cook, his characterization consists mostly of an accent, except this time the accent is Indian rather than German, which is kind of strange for a character named “Raul Hernandez”.

Darrel Boone, player character and ostensible paranormal investigator: Really doesn’t know where to place the emphasis. Reminds me a lot of the English voice acting in cheesy Japanese zombie games.

Carla Hoffman, the maid: Quite stilted, especially when she tries to express emotion. Sometimes she recites her words with an unnaturally rhythmic cadence, like a Dalek.

Henry Eistermeier, the caretaker: The voice actor seems to have decided that the way to play an elderly man is to have is voice crack up and down all the time like he’s yodeling. His lines written to be very casual and frequently contain colloquialisms that the voice actor clearly has never heard said aloud, resulting in some very awkward readings.

Jude Roberts, the supervisor’s wife: Distractingly bad. Just the worst. I am unconvinced that this actor understands English at all. Her delivery reminds me a little of Christopher Walken: the same sort of odd cadence, words grouped in ways that don’t make sense.

1 Comment so far

  1. Jota on 10 Jul 2019

    Perhaps Raul traded accents with Khan Noonien Singh.

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