Guild Chat - Episode 81

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Guild Chat - Episode 81

Title
Live from Burbank, CA
Host
Rubi Bayer
Guests
Mike Zadorojny
Tom Abernathy
Eve Eschenbacher
Tommy Callahan
Matthew Mercer
Julie Nathanson
Date
February 1, 2019
Official video
YouTube


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The following is an unofficial, player-written transcript of the episode. The accuracy of this transcription has not been verified by ArenaNet.

The episode of Guild Chat aired on February 1, 2019. Live from Dave & Dave Recording Studios in Burbank, CA! Learn all about how the Guild Wars 2 narrative team and Blindlight production staff get voicework into the game.

hi tyria and welcome to guild chat live
from Dave and Dave recording studios in
Burbank I am your host Ruby I'm Mike
sinner the game director in Guild Wars 2
we have a whole lot to talk about today
the first thing that Mike and I are
going to talk about is Guild Wars 2
friendships 2019 we did this last year
all through February and we were doing
it again this year we want you guys to
be a part of this throughout February
we're celebrating all of the
relationships formed in Tyria all of the
friendships all of the other
relationships and I know we both have
we've made a lot of friends in the years
we've been playing two Guild Wars 2 is a
very social game we built it as a way to
bring a community together and what did
we bring a community seriously so this
is just a way for us to kind of help
celebrate the friends and the
relationships that you guys have made
along the way whether they're platonic
whether the romantic whatever we saw a
huge support for this last year it was
amazing to read those those stories many
of them super touching and it's it was
just so much fun last year we won do it
again yes so we're starting today we
wouldn't hear your stories share those
with us on Twitter and Instagram
use the hashtag gw2 friendships so we
can share those around with the rest of
the community and just celebrate all of
those awesome relationships made in the
game last year we had a pretty cool
prize we had a lot of pretty cool prizes
so this year we are doing a sweepstakes
again if you add the hashtag @gw to give
away to your gw2 friendships hash tag
you'll be entered in our sweepstakes to
win some Guild Wars 2 gems maybe a
commission for two in-game characters
done by some of our creative partners or
a trip for two to Gamescom so you can
take your friend to games come with you
and we would love to see you there yeah
Gamescom is always a fantastic event
it's always great to reach out meets the
community so if you get a chance to be a
participant of that that's super cool
and even better so yeah so participate
let us know your story share your
stories your pictures
gw2 friendships and we will just spend
February enjoying all of that so all
right but why we are down here in
Burbank we have had an awesome week we
are recording with our voice actors for
some upcoming content and this has been
an amazing week hasn't it oh it's
fantastic when people say hey we work
with the best in the business
it's it's hard to not believe that when
you're working with these talented
people we have some very very famous
voice actors and actresses who have been
with us for the entire journey some of
us who started recording even before the
game launched so that's like you know 9
plus years of them working with us on
this precious almost a decade's worth of
recording and every time they come in
they bring professionalism they bring
amazing kind of creativity to the to the
roles and sometimes we'll even make some
changes on the fly based on some of the
creative just spark and insta they bring
to to the performance so it's great this
the show's gonna be awesome give you a
really good look behind the scenes of
how we get from us developing in you
know in the studio up in Bellevue to
when we come down here and how we do the
recording yeah so we're gonna talk about
that today
if you're a fan of the behind the voice
video series we've had on YouTube where
we've been talking one-on-one with the
actors we've also spent the week making
sure that we're gonna be able to
continue that through 2019 so look for
that coming up right now let's take a
quick break and we're going to talk to
some of the people behind getting these
voices into the game so stick around
we'll be right back
[Music]
[Music]
[Music]
[Music]
[Music]
yeah all right so we're gonna start we
gonna go down the line everybody won't
introduce themselves okay you know how
this works you know how this works you
guys okay all right people Tetris in
here already My name is Matthew Mercer
I'm a voice actor and I'm the voice of
the male Norn player character voice
over lead I'm Tommy Callahan I'm a
producer from blind light and I'm the
studio narrative director for ArenaNet
all right also huge shout out to blind
light and Dave and Dave for their
hospitality this week and every
recording session they're amazing thank
you very much all right well we're going
to talk about this is kind of a
continuation of a previous guild chat
where even I talked about getting the
voices from your guys's brains into the
game so we're going to talk about what
happens in between that process you kind
of run us through the narrative and
review process a little bit with Tom
Selleck so as we're working on the game
we've got a deadline in in mind that
we're working towards we're running
office hours with Tom and the entire
narrative team reading the scripts out
loud that part of the process basically
is we really really strongly since we're
writing for spoken word that the scripts
as soon as they're at all ready to be
shown anybody else should be brought to
a group and read out loud so we iterate
from that point on with the whole
writing team reading scripts sort of
going through identifying things that we
think can be tightened up made better
whatever way and kind of crowdsourcing
the fixes and proved to be a really
robust process for us then as we get to
deadline day we're you know contacting
blind late and telling them okay we've
got you know a window in mind for
recording here's how many people we need
to come in here's who we need to come in
here's how many lines they have you know
and Tommy starts doing the schedule
Tetris
I need these 25 people with varying
schedules for this one-week window go
good it's astounding usually happens
without between the phone call and the
tears schedules for those you know for
that for that range so we we also kind
of go off of how many lines we're
thinking we're gonna have cuz that tells
me how much time we want to ask people
if they're available for so we we just
kind of go back and forth can you come
in yes can come at this time I think so
okay to come at this time so that's
that's the that's the broad scheduling
part of it it sounds very easy so how
does that get to you that Matthew uh
they contact my agency and give me a
kind of a general idea of dates they're
looking at the schedule sessions I check
in with my schedule and see if I'm
available and if I ever like cool I'll
hold that for this and make sure that
nothing else gets booked in that time or
I'll be like I already have something in
that space and then we'll rearrange
until we find a place where it fits in
their schedule and then I just excitedly
count down the days until I get to come
back in here and you know shout angry
horn things sexual attention is coming
to head
[Laughter]
all right so what's the what is the lead
time look like I mean you get the call
from Eve I don't even know how I'm not
in on that phone call so I don't even
know how far in advance usually it's a
couple months in advance to start
fleshing out the you know like here's
the the window we're looking at and
roughly what we're looking at but it
really comes down to like the last
couple of weeks before that deadline it
all comes together it sits and I tell
everybody in the office it's not real
until we have the scripts but we do get
your description earlier than a lot of
people do everybody I mean it's factual
yeah like the reason that that we do
that is because we are well aware of how
much chaos can happen at the end of the
process trying to organize all this
stuff really late and so we want to you
know keep as much of that out of the
process as we possibly can so we do make
an effort to get everything tightened
from our end and chip divine light and
to that point - even on our end I will
say this project is the only game
project I work on that is scheduling
weeks sometimes months in advance right
a lot of times it's like alright this
games booking you tomorrow at 9:00 can
you make it that's more often than not
just how it works out so this is great -
like alright we need you two months from
now on this Tuesday can you set that
aside that's so much better for
scheduling it makes things far more it
helps that we publish on a fairly
regular cadence oh yeah so that sort of
helps us to be ahead in the 8-ball in
that way because yeah the norm is much
more you know people at 7:30 the night
before going to back time up but you
guys do do a really good job of
delivering us things that we can pass on
that are like already ready for you know
human consumption so we want to make
your job as easy as we possibly can for
sure the actors as well we do our best
to give about a week of buffer time
between when we've handed off the
scripts and when we start recording and
that's for get
those actor schedules finalized and
getting the scripts actually physically
printed onto paper to have here in the
studio's getting the files arranged and
everything just there's there's
last-minute changes and rewrites that do
happen but we try and give as much of a
buffer as possible just because it's too
much chaos if you say okay it's a Friday
night at 5:00 p.m. and I'm gonna start
writing that script for Monday morning
well and there's there's kind of an
Invisible Man or persons here in the
editor who who doesn't get to sit in the
room but needs to know every line that
was delivered how it was delivered is
that the one that you know Tom and Eve
want did Matt do something cooler is
there a new line that we're putting in
[Laughter]
so we have coordinators that we format
scripts for as well and they take notes
while Matt's doing his thing and then
afterwards we upload everything and send
it to an editor who makes it all nice
and clean so that we can send it back to
to even her team and she starts
processing it and we put it in the build
and we futz with the timing new things
around and all I saw and the the
localization team shouldn't be ignored
and all this because we're in the studio
here getting the notes you know when you
when you deliver the line slightly
different than what's written but so
much better we have to take that little
change the delivery works better you
know and we're not we're not you so
we're we're gonna get it as clean as we
can but sometimes what you deliver is a
little bit better we'll rewrite that
we'll pass it off to the localization
team to get those those retranslation z'
made because while we're recording this
week we're getting audio hand backs
starting this week and into next week
but localization is gonna start the
following Monday with their recording we
have a very tight turnaround can you
talk a little bit about the localized
recording I don't personally work on
localization recording for ArenaNet but
I do work very closely with the
localization team because we record in
Hamburg Germany and Paris France and
somewhere in China I'm not sure which
town I don't know where the studio is
but we have to get those scripts over to
them and they use the English audio
files as reference so they listen to the
English audio file for you know how loud
was this was it protected you know what
was the emotion here they use that as a
guide for a guide track for their
delivery we we want one of things that
we realized maybe year year and a half
ago was that that we had that half of
our players play the game not in english
but that we had virtually no visibility
into what the what kind of experience
they were getting was because we don't
speak generally speaking those languages
and even if we do we don't have a lot of
time to spend sort of you know English
right so we've we've we've built the
relationship with the localization team
to be one that's closer in that period
because we want to make sure they have
everything they need from what we're
doing in English so that they can then
go and try to execute it to as high a
quality bar as they possibly can and
it's not easy from the translation point
for it because you know sometimes people
will write in lines that in English are
sort of puns or other kind of idiomatic
terms and phrases they don't translate
right and we want the translators to
come up with whatever an equivalent kind
of joke would be any other language
doesn't have to be literal so we have to
sort of help them find that stuff and
then the directors who record in other
countries are all contractors they're
not I mean their defenders rather and
and so we've just we've really tried to
bring the localization team in as close
to their team as we can so that they
understand and are part of our process
and and therefore are not mystified when
they're going to try to execute another
languages you know yeah and they're
great they do amazing work that's
actually something had wondered about
because I've seen puns here and there in
our stuff or very very english-speaking
directed things and I had that kind of
wonder what we do about that because I
don't speak those languages either but
it's
interesting and it's really good to know
that we aim for an equal experience in
all language because like you said a lot
of our players do you guys a lot of you
play in non-english so yeah I appreciate
that all right so we talked about
getting the script to you guys when does
that get to you it gets to me actually I
get the scripts in this project in
advance which never happens in games
most projects no context is so great but
because it around so quick or it's just
people don't think about it often games
you walk in there the first time you're
seeing the script is when it's there on
the mic stand all right line one go
right and so you're kind of it's using
your instincts and whatever context
you've been able to get from line to
line so getting these in advance many go
to read through the lines helps you
already be prepared for it feel
confident in the performance and where
the story is going and be able to kind
of speed along this session and not let
it drag on and end up being you know a
pain for all these people working so
hard to get to these points you wanna
let them down so I'm very appreciative
of that but so I get the script about a
week or a few days in advance at least
so I can go ahead and peruse it then
come into the session and that's kind of
where we get a chance to actually build
it together yeah okay so let's talk
about the session because you guys are
all in there you're definitely there and
that is like this has been going all
week all day long
can you guys each talk about a little
bit about what that's like from your
point of view because those are really
fun and there's a lot happening and you
can fight over who goes first
shorter than your experience you guys
here all week I'm jumping all around
throughout the week but one thing
because I've been working on this
project for so long and there's you know
story updates you know every few months
or so it's exciting as I get to come
back and see what the next chapter is
and as a person who's narrative lis
obsessed anyway it allows me the
opportunity to be excited for the next
chapter and come in but for me it's it's
four hours where we get to go in there
we get to dig into the story we get to
jump through the scripts and sometimes
do multiple care
a lot of NPCs so we're gonna try the
ranges and you know play beyond just you
know the the Nord male warrior time so
that's a lot of fun for me and and then
I get to leave after the four hours and
then you get to deal with all the rest
of the actors so I for me it's a it's a
short sweet condensed experience you
guys have to endure the the length and
breadth of it yeah well I know these
guys have to fly down so it's even
longer yeah you're up in Seattle but for
me I'm usually hiding back at the
offices of blind light and having my
coordinators spy on things for me there
are any fire if anybody's bleeding then
you know I start calling I like to come
in as much as possible because there's I
mean there's such a dense range so it's
also fun for me you know as a casting
director to watch what everybody does
when they have a few different
characters and what they slip into
what's fun for them so I don't know it's
uh it's a it's a smorgasbord for me I
don't I can't speak for their experience
though well we I mean we come down on
Sunday before the week usually middle of
the day we get here in time to have
dinner with our directors they also have
gotten the scripts ahead of time the
reason that we make such an effort to
get the scripts ahead of time to the
actors and the directors is we want them
to have context we don't we know some of
the consequences that happen in the
situations that not talking about where
you walk in you have to do cold read or
something I've seen right that's not
what we want and we're an ongoing kind
of serial anyway right so the actors and
other characters and they know what's
going on the plot and the directors do
too and they and so we just want to get
them up to speed in terms of what the
full sort of the fullness of more trying
to get out of all this is and so we'll
have dinner we'll talk about it
sometimes will actually watch video
playthroughs or the current state of the
build for the chat for the episode oh
that's the night before and then
starting at call time of 8:30 the next
morning we are all here getting into
play
directors getting into place actors
arriving at nine o'clock we work
straight from nine to six with a with an
hour break for lunch if we are fortunate
and we have 10 PC characters which in
its I mean it can be a difficult thing
over the time of the week to sort of
stay focused because you have to you
have to stay so intensively focused on
every line as it's being performed and
hearing and thinking about it it's
particularly difficult with player
characters because after the second or
third when your mind starts to go fuzzy
yeah right so so maintaining your focus
in that room I think is even harder but
it's a it's a it's a fairly grueling
process but it's also a really
satisfying process because because the
actors do bring stuff that that we would
not have thought of they the weather
it's changing lives or is just color to
lines that we wrote and the process we
had a writer down here this time who it
was her first time and in the studio and
and and
for her as I've seen for every writer
it's true for me the first time happened
the process of hearing an actor say
things that you wrote and give life to
it as a character is just mind-blowing
it's an incredible experience so we do
try to in addition to Eve and me and
Marissa who is Eve sort of second and
ARMA Constantine who's the near design
lead for Guild Wars 2 and Julian Arden
who is the story editor for Guild Wars 2
we also tried to have at least some of
the actor the writers who work in the
episode come down and be in the room for
at least part of it or if they can't do
that to Skype them in so that they can
at least witnessed the process first of
all and also if we're getting anything
wrong that was sort of what they hoped
from it they can tell us we also then
during the week we will have early in
the week at dinner with Tommy and Beau
and levy usually from blend light just
to sort of sync on how the first day or
two went and are there any significant
problems that we need to work out and
then one light frequently is nice enough
to take all of us out to dinner at some
point during the week which is great and
really expensive for them particularly
week like this where we had everyone
here everybody who helps us behind the
scenes like the editors in Cuba
be invited to the big family dinner for
the last episode of the season and it
was wonderful but we also had we also
tried to get we've been trying to get
our team leads the the design team leads
down so they can see what the process is
like right
Lindsey Morocco is the content lead for
Guild Wars 2 Mike Z who've already
spoken to like like he hasn't been down
here like eight years Lindsey had never
been there
you know everybody wanted to sort of
come and be a part of it this time and
and so it was a packed room and we were
a little worried about whether that
would be distracting or difficult for
the directors to sort of you know you
can be obnoxious directors if you're not
careful in your room like that and but
everybody mostly behaved themselves in
there was a reason as I cuddled down at
this end of the hall all week because
like I don't want to be in the way so
what I'm doing in sitting in the room
for all of us we we try and have
narrative nvo team representation in the
studio because you know narratives
bringing the like this is what what the
arc is this is what we what we wrote how
we what we need but Marissa and myself
we're we're listening also for that
context you know giving the the the
context behind the scenes and also
taking all those notes for localization
we're the bridge between narratives and
localization and just everybody trying
to get you know let's make sure we get
this tweaked right let's make sure that
you know we hit the word right or if we
you know we changed it that we have
those notes so that localization can
turn around and get those in my laptop
looks like a mess because I've seriously
got the spreadsheet open for my notes on
one side the script open on the other
side and I'm VPN into the dev client so
I can get context if I if I need you
somehow aren't connecting your crazy
grabbing all of that data I need to keep
an eye on any notes any changes that we
have because we have a tight turnaround
that we need to go through and all the
moving pieces helps me I'm so impressed
by the level of organization it takes to
do that
she's a superhero yeah alright and after
a you know whatever years of doing like
like thank God you don't you hone the
process over and over yeah finally you
get it to something that sort of works
[Laughter]
it's both it's perfect alright so with
such a huge group both in the recording
booth and out of it this might be mostly
for you too but why don't you talk a
little bit about what it's like working
with some of the actors and something
that you mentioned was we're hearing the
same lines from ten different player
characters and I've been watching no
it's true and and what is one of the
most amazing phenomena was for me when I
first arrived and started being a part
of this process was for the most part
the scripts are the same occasionally we
have you know minor racial variants or
whatever but but for the most part
they're the same but what really
surprised me as I watched the different
actors come in and do the player
characters was that because those actors
are all different and what they bring to
it is different that each of the PCs is
different even though they by and large
have the same words they don't
necessarily have the same attitude or
take about everything and I love that I
love the the variation and and and the
you know diversity of choice that it
gives players I mean it's a really
different experience I think playing you
know PCs or a female that it is playing
PC charm ale I mean it's just a really
it's a different thing and that's
awesome and as you go through the script
I mean you're the you know the the
Golden Path is it like 95% of the lines
are the same yeah yeah I mean we don't
do a whole lot of variants just because
we'd have a lot bandwidth to but if you
if you ever go on and watch somebody
play a different way or character than
you normally do there's a big difference
yeah that's right it's impressive
it's pretty cool yeah but we do I mean
I've said for analysis a team we have
and I say we I had no part virtually and
assembling it so I'm saying it as a as a
fanboy basically right we have the best
cast in videogames the the level of
talent
he's not wrong no we have an absolute
all-star pantheon of people that we just
collected over eight or nine years which
is amazing that we get to have all of
those actors some of that some of the
absolute best voiceover actors I've ever
met worked with I arrived it was like oh
my god you have this person and this
person is I can't believe it this is who
I am it's like going in a candy store
you know I'm it's fantastic and we're
not gonna ask you to speak for 25 people
you're absolutely right just chatting
with all of the different actors this
week and one of the questions that I was
asking them when we were running through
the interview series was what are some
of the other things you've worked on I
heard critical role a lot just I mean
and they were saying things a lot of
them I knew but then you know it was
like oh I'm on that TV show nesic what
someone else was on this is s which I'm
obsessed with right now
yep I'm actually glad the camera wasn't
on me at that point because like my
whole brain just like stripped its gears
trying to remember which I remember she
told her she was on veep and I'd totally
seen the episode I had no idea it was
her totally to recognize it yeah I did
this and I had to rewind a little bit
which helps me on the casting because I
have to fill you know as well and okay
I've got these people coming in for
these named characters I can give this
that person this generic and that person
this generic because I know their voice
and then you don't just do the PC
normally early
was fun oh yeah crazy ass is because we
have these guys coming in but they can
give us three voices if we have the time
for them to do that in the session so we
and it's like we have a repertory
company of actors right and we're giving
these amazing actors these little bitty
butt bit things to do but they bring
such creativity and inspiration to them
that that's I think a big reason why the
whole world feels so great inside the
game you know the level of
sophistication and just general quality
to me I think comes a lot from it's it's
so much fun to be able to create in that
space like I said it's a joy to play
these these main characters through the
narrative for the many years they've
been doing this now but every one of
these little opportunities to throw a
little more flavor in the world and kind
of flex a little bit are other aspects
of our repertoire that we don't have the
chance to it's just fun for us because
like I said every session is like coming
to see old friends again and then we all
get to kind of be like whoa wait what is
this you're throwing me and you get a
describe the character kind of has these
quirks like something like this like oh
yeah and it's just this cool kind of
collaborative creation process all over
again yeah I do want to call that
because I've noticed it you and a number
of other actors it never stops being
fascinating to me to see to what your
actors jump from like charge and Norn to
Asura because the voices are so
distinctly different and I don't know
how you do it but it's amazing to walk
all over the place that's our career
path you know we're like we like to be
performers like the actors but many of
us we focus specifically on voice and
finding a dynamic range in that space so
we can play all these different
personalities and a lot of things that
we would never do on camera I'm you know
I've done on camera for years but it's
always been a very particular type I'm a
very particular type and voiceover I get
to be demon princes I get to be you know
tiny animal tinkerers I get to be you
know angelic beings like things if I
would never become
and so you spend your time in your own
little private space probably driving in
the freeway or when you're in the shower
making silly voices just to see what you
can come up with and hopefully when they
have the opportunity to tailor that cool
idea that you came up with in the spot
to one of these characters you guys
present before us
I hear you ad-lib in the in the studio
and I'm always filing it back away we're
i rambling psychosis has a positive I
have a question that I want to drop to
you and you from a viewer what is the
what's the technical process like when
you're working when like with Sam doing
brand like with a Norn or with a char
because that needs some work on the
backend afterwards so he gives the
performance you know right in the booth
were there for Sam when he's doing
Graham's voice you know he drops his
voice down just a little bit from his
normal speaking voice because it's Norn
but the the processing does the heavy
lifting once we get back to the studio
we take the audio files that of Sam's
finished performance and run them
through Nuendo and our processing system
or processing paths that our audio
director has built so like Noren have a
process and English that's run it so
that when it comes out the other end
[Laughter]
it goes from Sam down to Bram
yeah Santa Bram you drop down from your
normal speaking voice it's still pretty
low innocence it's that but when you
want the know where to be you nine feet
tall yeah I usually go to Sam first
it's okay it's fine that is a I think
this session last April that I was at
one of the things you played play some
references for sim and it was
post-processing and I remember he just
listened to it went Jesus and you know
we don't want to strain you guys you
don't want to hurt you make you scream
too much there are some level of
screaming and shouting but we don't want
to do it excessively yeah you've done
those games so we had we had a different
actor and earlier this week for an
awakened and you know I played them you
know here's what a different actors
awakened sounded like with them just you
know straight delivery and here's what
it sound like process so don't drop your
voice to too low you don't have to
strain let the processing do the heavy
lifting that's awesome oh yeah great
work she was awesome one more question
I'm kind of like watching a couple of
questions coming in over here that's all
good how do you convey the amount of
emotion needed for like a scene like or
eans death hey spoilers
part of being an actor and kind of the
training is being able to to get really
in touch with the different emotional
states and being able to and their
different techniques to do that whether
it be finding moments in your life that
you can personally connect to that
similar emotion or just sitting in that
emotional space long enough where you
can access it without needing to be
there mentally personally and then I
kind of need more that that Avenue and
so it's it's having this toolbox of
various emotional states and intent and
combining it with the context of the
scene and the arc that they want to and
they explain they want to you know to
get through throughout that scene so you
can start from a very dark sad place but
eventually lead itself to a very
you know heroic stalwarts turn around
and trying to raise up your troops
around you and so for you it's piecing
out all the different parts of your
toolbox lining them up and keeping that
arc in mind while also considering the
lines considering who you're performing
them to the context of the scene and
making it feel real and that comes with
just a lot of practice and training it
comes with being comfortable in that
space and trusting in yourself and
trusting in these guys and it's it's you
know it's a very scary process at first
because it's having to put all this
together and then kind of letting it go
and see where it takes you yeah and
sometimes it's magic sometimes it does
not work at all you all go oh let's try
it again you know but but that's part of
this too is you're trying things out
you're you're you know we usually do to
spur line as we go through the script
and so the first line the first read
might be you finding it and kind of
getting the words out and then once that
first line comes through you're like
okay now I really understand where this
point of dialogue is going to begin
where it's going to end in the beats I
want to hit so the second take you can
kind of free yourself even more and so
it's it is an exploratory process and I
know it's a lot of fun it's so so for me
to get to get to those points as
emotional beats it's just being
emotionally available to put yourself in
that emotional space and trying to put
yourself in that moment and convey it
with honesty I think the other thing
that has to be called out is how great
voiceover actors like Matt are the
skills involved in taking what otherwise
on camera would be a completely
physicalized performance right your body
your face all of that and somehow
reflecting all of those things but only
in your voice
is a very we've talked about this before
it's a very very specific set of skills
and not everybody can do it well and and
those who can are astounding to watch
thank you it's a but but it is because
if you if you push that too far it
becomes bad voiceover which you know
gaming definitely started in a rough
spot many you know back when I grew up
and that's it yeah the subtle nuances
the raise of an eyebrow the half-cocked
grin the the lean you know to a knowing
nod to the hand on somebody's shoulder
these are all things that on camera are
conveyed with subtle facial expressions
and physicality you have to have that
come through in the voice
just enough just enough otherwise it
gets a little camping going for but but
I mean we can hear that in your voice
you can hear it in the final product
even though we're not the players aren't
seeing that hand on the shoulder that
you're doing or that you know cocked
eyebrow or that grin you can hear it in
your voice and again you do it and I've
seen it in every actor this week and I
remember seeing it before those those
gestures those facial expressions the
movement that's all happening just to
make it work I guess but it is it's
interesting watching how much every
actor gets into it yeah well it's it's
theater of mind you are you're you're
putting yourself at least for me and
many actors kind of in a similar space
we are imagining ourselves in the scene
we're seeing you know the the fields of
broken ice before us we see the soldiers
walking past with you know solemn
expressions we see the old friend who
comes to us asking you know what
happened are they still alive and so in
that moment when they give us the
context of the emotional state of that
scene and what's happening around us in
that space we imagine you know going
through those motions and some of us
some some people it's a very still
experience and it's all imaginary for
people like me it's a little more
physical and I you know my hands and
gestures tend to follow suit and I don't
realize it and then I realize you guys
have a camera and they're filming it's
just it's it's it's a natural instinct
xual part of putting yourself in that
scene microphone or like your I've had
group Accords for animation where it's
been a lot of people around us we're
doing a fight scene develop like all
right so throw a giant swinging punch
and I'm like doula and I look over and
the person who's sitting next to me is
like barely dodged my attack and sorry
so Ken it can be detrimental at some
point yeah there's been contact made
with objects dozen
[Laughter]
sure I mean we people problem players
players that have heard it are familiar
yeah it was it was episode 5 episode 4 I
don't remember the one where where you
showed us the the commander says
something and about something exciting
yeah it was late I see chalk and
microphone you hear like 15 feet away go
what endures of this you know we Hannah
Barbera exactly it comes to thing and
and that was all our audio designers and
they did an amazing job doing we liked
it so much that now we're looking for
more places off mic stuff happens we had
a line the line is but he had a line
where after the after the delivery of
the line he knocked over his water
bottle speaking of things that don't go
as intended in a good way this is and
I'm not asking for like terrible war
stories I'm asking for the good like
somebody accidentally knocking a water
bottle off a stool yeah I'm so it turns
out that you'll remember at 2:00 in the
morning
that's alright amazing things but I
would say thankfully I've had no
terrible experiences in this project
I've had projects but four things have
gone interesting me but but everything
with the old horses part has been has
gone really smoothly
we've had a few like this voice didn't
work out for this person recast but you
know in hearing
then you know trying to get that voice
going oh they would be perfect for this
other thing yeah yeah we've had a few
new actors where it's like we bring him
in and Cherise booth was one of them we
didn't know you know much about her her
acting or her voice and we brought her
in first some generic voices and we're
like oh my gosh she's amazing let's
let's bring her in for more stuff and we
ended up like writing the character of
Zafira just for her we do that that's
when I say we have a repertory you know
group of actors that's sort of what I
mean like we have actors we work with
over and over again and we come up with
new characters for them that we can
tailor to their specific strengths and
weaknesses I think that is a recurring
good thing that happens on exception
really cool another thing I think that
happened along the way in the first part
of the season with Joko with Nolan North
was I think going into Episode one you
know we we didn't see joke I was much
more not this isn't good but as much
more than sort of a very fun film right
and but listening to Nolan record the
stuff we were doing informed the writing
that we were doing and we with him he
was so funny doing it in a way we hadn't
necessarily planned right we started
writing to that so that by the time you
got to Episode three like you know I
mean we were just going to town with Joe
it was it was fantastic and once we once
we found that groove and he found that
groove and that was the thing that
inspired us we just I mean we couldn't
you guys sorry the good the good stories
that I'm thinking of have still have
spoilers stamps on I am there was a slip
of the tongue I think yesterday with one
of the Asura characters that worked out
really it's not anything that could go
in game but it was so perfectly funny
she's trying to say
cogs in the eternal alchemy mm-hmm and
it was cogs in the eternal economy and I
was like well she's oh man there are so
many our audio engineers have a
compilation I'm sure somewhere in a
harddrive of outtakes
that should never see the light of
that's that's friend blackmail there as
you know we appreciate us that you hold
on to that and go exactly Oh God all
right well it is getting a little bit
late thank you very much for your extra
time guys we have one more thing so
stick around because Eve has a friend
that she's going to bring in and we're
going to talk over those yeah think
about like the game design community
like yeah yeah everybody knows everybody
it's the same thing all right you guys
stick around we will be right back
thanks to all of you for spending some
time in this room because it is like a
thousand degrees in here this is very
well
[Music]
[Music]
all right we are back with Eve and Julie
I will let you introduce yourself I'm
Julie Nathanson and I have been working
on Guild Wars 2 for 117 years okay but
really no I think um and I was part of
the base game and and part of the
process I think pre game for a long time
so I would say it's been like nine or
ten years yeah so Julie is several of
the asura that you will hear running
around in the game yes and human and
quaggan and originally right Alice and
wait hold on the twins the twins thing
with khari was really sweet because they
they know that we're kind of bessie's so
uh so they surprised me and they were
like well by the way here's who you're
talking to
it's Carrie all right so you two have
something coming up don't know I'm still
trying to jump right there not me talk
to the groundhog yeah we're really
excited about this after you know after
working together for so long we started
to what we created obviously a
friendship and and a really wonderful
communication together and part of the
benefit of this is that we've been
looking at ways to collaborate and ways
for the voice actors and the developers
to really strike a collaborative
attitude and get more out of the
experience creatively for everyone so
we're doing a talk at GDC this year the
Game Developers Conference in March
we're calling it collaborative
approaches to great vo performances
because of the ways that we've learned
to work with each other in the past and
I I bring to your working with all of
the actors that we have under worst yeah
Julie just mentioned with working with
uh sorry the the part where you were
twins with khari yeah you know being
able to say
oh by the way the other half of year of
this scene is being delivered by curry
immediately you were like oh I know that
person I know exactly how to play this
and that comes out of a collaborative
mindset right so so Eve's thinking what
can I do to help Julie get into the
scene how can I make this feel more
seamless I know she's friends with this
person she's going to be able to imagine
how Carrie is gonna perform the scene
and have a sense of it and it
immediately grounded the experience and
my experience of working with ArenaNet
has been collaborative from the
beginning and so we we've we've thought
about sharing what's worked for us we've
thought about how that can also be
beneficial to other developers and voice
actors really looking at the concept of
a collaborative mindset from the
beginning of the development process
through the audition experience in terms
of what sides are sent and how to
approach that and then moving into
preparation for recording and then in
the recording session itself so you know
it seems like it's a good time to focus
on collaboration yeah considering our
human world right now so you know you
can get like amazing performances when
you treat your actress like like people
who are on your team working to make the
project great you know it's it's we
don't call in the actors and go we pay
you to be in here and you just do the
stuff for us and get it done
it's know we're all here making this art
and it is art and we are going to treat
you as a collaborator and a partner in
this process because what you do is so
important to what we do and our words
fall flat when your performance can't go
in the direction that it needs to go and
when that experience is engendered then
the voice actor experience is oh there's
an open space for my creativity to be
here in discussion in attitude and then
what we can bring to the table only
benefits what you're needing so we've
we've been talking about this for a long
time and we're excited to to bring it to
the fore yeah it's it's an exciting
collaboration and it's a really cool
process to watch it feed off of itself
and like you were saying it's not just
you come in here you get paid to do the
job you leave
one thing that I have noticed is that
when the actors are taking a break the
directors the riders taking break it's
not just everybody goes and sits down
everybody's hanging out and having fun
and catching up on you know what have
you been up to and it's it's such a
close-knit team that it really comes
through I think in the game we look
forward to these sessions
I'm always looking forward did you hear
me talking about our GW friendships like
February 1st is all about our February
2019 the whole month is all about all of
the friendships and relationships but
we'll extendo months it would be great
work so if you're GDC where when is your
talk just stand there and just shout our
names and we'll probably collaboratively
come and talk to you and tell you when
we're speaking well thank you guys so
much for some time talking about that
keep an eye on the GDC website for when
scheduling is finalized and if you're
heading to GDC definitely stop and talk
to these two ladies thanks for having
yeah thank you guys both thank you all
for hanging out and watching Gil chat
and we will see you next time bye guys


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