Let’s summarize the test we’ve conducted recently with your help. Our goal was to find out if the voice of the game’s protagonist could make a significant difference.
Could it exist in parallel with the text? Could it play an even more significant role? How well can the two work together?
We’ve created a voiceover for parts of Theodor’s inner monologue so that each dialogue he participates in can have some of his ongoing thoughts expressed out loud.
The majority of our players have agreed on the following:
- The voice helps build atmosphere (38% of participants thought so) and communicate the protagonist’s personality (again 38%).
- The voiceover provided valuable clues about Theodor himself and his partners in conversation (61%).
- Voiceover clues influence players’ decisions (53%).
- The voice helps get into character (75%).
- The voice fits the protagonist or at the very least it fits more than it doesn’t (38,5% and 30,8% respectively).
- When the voiceover is delivered simultaneously with the text it inhibits the overall perception of the game (53% have a hard time absorbing the voice while reading, 69% have trouble reading during voiceover).
- The players unanimously agree that the voiceover needs to only convey optional information (84,5% although one player added that it’s a good idea to break large amounts of text with some interactive action).
- The majority of players (77%) said it’s better to have the “Listen again” button.
Our main conclusion is this: we definitely need voiceover but not in its current form. As of now the sound channel doesn’t blend well with the text and the player’s perception splits making it easy to miss critical info. So the voiceover either should be easily repeatable or recorded as entries in the hero’s journal.
Our test is concluded but we still accept comments and suggestions. What are your thought on in-game information delivered through voice rather than text?