New voice talent defends Silent Hill 2 HD, 'blame' original actor
Posted: 24.08.2011 13:17 by Simon Priest Comments: 3
Character James Sunderland gets a new voice in Konami's Silent Hill 2 HD remake, and actor Troy Baker defends the process and the decisions that led to it.

They're "tied to the original performances" when re-recording which causes problems, in expectation and execution. New voice is original actor's fault.

The upcoming Silent Hill HD Collection contains HD remakes of Silent Hill 2 and 3. Both titles are being remastered with 720p visuals and being treated to updated voice-overs for when it releases early next year. Fan reaction has been mixed at best.

Actor Troy Baker was called in by Konami to be the new voice of Silent Hill 2's James Sunderland, and Baker says lip synching is an obstacle as no animations changed.

"We were tied to the original performances which, for a lot of fans, are monumental and it is a benchmark in gaming performance," explained Baker.

"But the original performances were met with mixed reviews, too. We all knew going in that we were going to get raised on this and people would be on both sides and be like, 'This is amazing,' or be on the polar opposite and say, 'It's the worst thing ever.'"

"Regardless, we were going to have to live with it. But we knew as fans that we wanted to do something that was true to Silent Hill, not necessarily anyone else's performance of it, but true to Silent Hill and all of its incarnations."

Actor Guy Cihi was praised for his performance as James Sunderland in the original, however demands he made of Konami were unrealistic said Baker.

"I'm sure that if Silent Hill was my big game and I did it 10 years ago and I saw how successful it was, I would want more money too," Baker said. "Actually, I don't know if I would be that way because I'd just be happy that I was a part of a successful franchise."

"The thing that I have learned, especially with the Japanese companies, is that you never ever speak out. You never bash your employers. You never bash the people who gave you a huge leg up no matter what they've done or what you feel that they've done."

"But the fact that he's talking about residuals being in video games shows you just how out of the loop he is because residuals don't happen. They don't exist."

"Don't think for a second that I don't wish that I had a fraction of a penny for every unit sold of Call of Duty: Black Ops or Modern Warfare 2 or Modern Warfare 3 that we're finishing up right now. I would love to see that. But that's not how the system works right now."

"So it's not that Konami wasn't willing to pay them, he (Guy) wanted residuals, he wanted non-existent money that he felt that he was owed. So Konami has no fault in this whatsoever. And they wanted to use him again. Guy was the one who was outspoken about it and said that unless this happens he wouldn't do it, so he forced Konami's hand," he continued.

"So if anybody wants to blame anybody for why they chose new voices, they can go back to the original James and he's the one to blame."

In the end if you don't like Silent Hill 2 HD then don't buy it, reasons Baker.

"We don't live in a fascist state. Please, have your opinion. If you want to hate it, that's fine. Just go back to the original because it still exists. You can still play it. This is just something new for a new generation," he explained.

"It's an endeavour for Konami to say that we want to bring this classic game back and give it a new treatment. We want to show you things that you never saw before."

"I find it funny when people who are reviewing me based on the new trailer and they don't even know who I am." Baker plays Booker De Witt in Irrational's BioShock Infinite, Two-Face in Rocksteady's Batman: Arkham City. He was Snow in Square Enix's Final Fantasy XIII and Ryu Hayabusa in Tecmo's Ninja Gaiden.

"They say that the new actor (me) displays his abysmal lack of acting chops. My reaction to that is OK, cool, that same person might have praised me for something else I've done before. But it's cool to see how people respond like that. It's kind of like a blind taste test."

Are you excited for the Silent Hill HD Collection out in early 2012?


By NetRockX (SI Newbie) on Aug 25, 2011
HD remake?
By dalrint (SI Newbie) on Aug 25, 2011
Wow. Maria's voice throws me off a lot more than James's does.

Is Mary W-last name I can never remember directing AND doing her voice?
By ColinMc (SI Veteran Member) on Sep 02, 2011