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Max's Talking Disappoints Me

posted by Anonymous on - last edited - Viewed by 808 users

I loved Max's voice from Hit the Road and the cartoon. That distinct New York flatness really added to his playful mania. Now he sounds like a generic prepubescent with a cracking voice (Sam also seems a little too listless and has lost his trademark "shush"). I'll probably get over it, but why didn't they use the voice that Max had in the trailer? It had a similarly playful drawl, but was less region-specific. It's a more unique distinction.

Yeah, I suppose I'm being a little anal, but whatever.

14 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • Easy answer this one, the voice that was used in the trailer was complained about in a thread spanning 150 posts before being stopped. Everyone hated it. Most people think his voice now -although not perfect- is an improvement.

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    Anonymous

    [quote]Most people think his voice now -although not perfect- is an improvement.[/quote]

    Actually, I did like the first one better judging from the short clips, but I don't want to come out as whiny, I'll wait until I play the whole game.
    I never had any issues with the first Max voice (though I know that a lot of people had). It was not perfect, but okay. This is okay too, but - well - less okay than the first one. :)
    Really, it's not that big a difference to me. Sam is the dog that the voice situation concerns in my opinoin, and there hasn't been any change on that.

    There I went and rambled again ... Don't take any of those comments as official statements of my mind; I'll hold on to those until the game is out.

  • [soapbox]

    I think the fact that no one on the internet can come to a consensus about these voices is pretty telling.

    Some people say Max sucks but love Sam. Others say Sam is boring but Max is great. A handful say "What was wrong with the Max in the trailer?" but as Pvt. Public points out, people picked the voices in the trailer to death at the time. To be honest, half the time people people say they hate Sam's voice or like Max's voice, I'm wondering if they actually know which is Sam and which is Max. (It's easy to get their names mixed up!) I even saw a comment where someone said Max's voice was bad because it doesn't sound like a voice that would occur in real life. Err... what about Max DOES occur in real life? :))

    There was nothing Telltale could do in this situation to please the fans. So we ended up doing what we do in any voice casting situation -- listened carefully to the auditions and chose the voices we thought were best. As an added bonus, Telltale has worked with both of these actors before and so we know what they're capable of.

    Having played the game myself multiple times now, I can honestly say that I like the voices. I'm saying this as a gamer, not a Telltale employee (I've been a gamer a lot longer!) I think they both fit the characters well. I really think, across the board, that people are being unfair to the voice actors, and that a lot of people are basing an expectation of how the voices "should" sound on a 13-year-old memory of how much they enjoyed playing Hit the Road. (And as I said elsewhere on this board a few days ago, I don't think the voices from Hit the Road are that great!) I'm encouraged that several of the previews that have been posted (written by people who have seen more than just a few video clips) say that the voices are well done... even though people are complaining, there *are* others out there who like them.

    In the end, whether people like the voices or not is not anything Telltale has control of. What we DO have the ability to do is to cast actors we like working with and who we think are true to the characters, and to write / design / program really fun games that are going to fill a void that's existed way too long. So that's what we've done. The fact that a lot of people seem only to want to pick apart the voices can be discouraging, but on the other hand, I'd rather the thing people complain about is something we have no control over than something we do. It means we're doing everything else right. :D

    [/soapbox]

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    Anonymous

    I think you'll know if there really is any issue at all. If there really is something that bugs the general audience, there'll surely be vast amount of posts about it.

    It really is a case of judging a book by its covers when trying to gather an opinion from the few sound bites we have. Then again, whenever we have something on our mind about the game we seem to have an urge to post it here in the anxiety of waiting for the first episode to be released.

    I hope your people aren't annoyed with us ranting and raving all day long here. :o)

  • I think Telltale's smart enough to know what's helpful criticism and what isn't. If you look outside of Telltale's forums you'll find much more balanced views on the voice work (at least from people who are obviously not just opposed to anything that isn't the original voices). There's a lot of positive stuff out there.

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    Anonymous

    I'm gonna wait till the game comes out before posting anything else about the voices.. I think we can all get a little caught up about a few 30 second clips while we are waiting :)

  • I'm personally not really caring about the voices too much. Telltale doesn't have millions to spend on supercomputers which can render the idealized voices for Sam and Max based on each seperate user (besides which, these computers would prolly go insane and totally kill us if they existed. With the internet or something). so they're doing the best they can do, which when not compared to everyones favourite memory of a particular line from the show or game are actually really well done.

    Here's an idea, try thinking about the positives of the voices and stop comparing them to the perfect voices you hear inside your head whenever you look at the pictures (My god! You hear voices in your head! You need to take lots of pills in order to get better...). I personally had no problems with the voices in any of the trailers (the first included) so I couldn't care less. Hey, at least I have the optiion of voice and not just subtitles!

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    Anonymous

    I agree I think there are bigger issues than this.

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    Anonymous

    [quote]Here's an idea, try thinking about the positives of the voices and stop comparing them to the perfect voices you hear inside your head whenever you look at the pictures![/quote]

    Good advice. Despite my misgivings I have warmed up to the new VA's, their interpretations of S&M are uniquely engaging. I'm anxious to hear more of their work come release time. I especially appreciate the energy the new Max VA brings to the role.

    As I said in my reply to the gameplay videos news post, the most glaring weakness of the new voiceovers is that Sam and Max tend to sound like caricatures first and characters second. This causes the chemistry between Sam and Max to shift slightly, and puts too much emphasis on their assigned roles: Sam as the *quiet* straight man and Max the *loud* wacky sidekick.

    However I trust that the VAs "caricature" mindset will dissolve once they become more seasoned, so I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.

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    Anonymous

    [quote]Max's Talking Disappoints Me[/quote]

    Count yourself lucky - My whole life has disappointed me :)

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