Video Game Voice Actor Union Officially Goes on Strike


We previously reported on the video game voice actors union SAG-AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) threatening to go on strike, should negotiations for better working conditions fall through.

Now, it seems like talks with various big video game publishers has once again come to a halt, as the union has officially gone on strike. According to the official SAG-AFTRA website, the strike will launch today, at 12:01 AM Pacific, today.

Video game companies targeted by the strike include:

  • Activision Publishing, Inc.
  • Blindlight, LLC
  • Corps of Discovery Films
  • Disney Character Voices, Inc.
  • Electronic Arts Productions, Inc.
  • Formosa Interactive, LLC
  • Insomniac Games, Inc.
  • Interactive Associates, Inc.
  • Take 2 Interactive Software
  • VoiceWorks Productions, Inc.
  • WB Games, Inc.

SAG-AFTRA has also shared a list of all the involved video games related to the strike. The union is striking for better payrates, less stressful performance or vocal sessions, more clarity between auditions and projects, stunt coordinators during mo-cap sessions, and more.

Various SAG-AFTRA members will actually picket in front of the Electronic Arts building in Playa Vista, CA at 10:30 AM Pacific this coming Monday, October 24th.

The voice actors for the strike include the likes of Jennifer Hale (Mass Effect), David Hayter (Metal Gear Solid), Steve Blum (Vanquish), Elias Toufexis (Deus Ex: Human RevolutionDeus Ex: Mankind Divided), and more.


Owner and Publisher at Niche Gamer and Nicchiban. Outlaw fighting for a better game industry. Pronouns: Patriarch, Guido, Olive, Catholic

  1. Zanard Bell
    Zanard Bell
    October 21, 2016 at 10:41 am

    As long as Ashley Burch doesn’t return, I’m good.

  2. Longtooth
    October 21, 2016 at 10:41 am

    I am glad this does not affect any games that I want to actually play.

  3. Ubrokemygrill?
    October 21, 2016 at 10:43 am

    Bring in the scabs. We also need to find some unknowns and new talent. The good voice actors can stay but we know those are few and far between.

  4. Captain Vidya
    Captain Vidya
    October 21, 2016 at 10:46 am

    Bring in the new talent!

  5. Michael Richardson
    Michael Richardson
    October 21, 2016 at 10:48 am

    As long as this doesn’t affect XSEED, Pqube, or Atlus releases, I couldn’t care less.

    And yeah, I wouldn’t mind hearing some new voices in my games. Bring in the replacements!

  6. Etherblaze
    October 21, 2016 at 10:49 am

    I am amused.

  7. Some dude
    Some dude
    October 21, 2016 at 10:50 am

    This shit again

  8. NuclearCherries
    October 21, 2016 at 10:51 am

    They’ll get no sympathy from me.

  9. totenglocke
    October 21, 2016 at 10:55 am

    Time to start bringing in the new blood who are eager to work instead of demanding more and more money while contributing very little to the end product.

  10. Annie T. Mood
    Annie T. Mood
    October 21, 2016 at 10:55 am

    oh no!!
    we can’t get our high quality video games without voice actors!!

  11. subnet
    October 21, 2016 at 10:55 am

    >David Hayter
    wow, he wants more money from MGS5… OH WAIT

    >Elias Toufexis
    he seems like a cool guy, wishing the best of luck for him.

  12. dogmentation
    October 21, 2016 at 10:56 am

    This better not adversely affect the release date of Creativity Center Free Draw Web Game or there will be hell to pay.

  13. Maria Maasaa
    Maria Maasaa
    October 21, 2016 at 10:57 am

    > less stressful performance or vocal sessions
    Like do they whip them while they do the voices?

  14. Migi
    October 21, 2016 at 10:58 am

    Good!! now make the rules so tight it would kill the voice acting industry in the U.S, Especially when it comes to anime games or series so we can just get games how they are meant to be in their native language.

  15. Bix96
    October 21, 2016 at 10:58 am

    The worst thing about this is that the strike will probably work and game development costs will bloat even further causing companies to try and squeeze more from the consumer.

  16. Bitterbear
    October 21, 2016 at 11:00 am

    Meh, they all sound the same to me.

  17. Maria Maasaa
    Maria Maasaa
    October 21, 2016 at 11:00 am

    Or maybe make them more loose so that good voice actors/actresses can come in who don’t cost an arm and a leg. Then that money can go to making the games better.

  18. dogmentation
    October 21, 2016 at 11:01 am

    I assume they will be picketing silently.
    Wouldn’t want to harm those golden pipes.

  19. Migi
    October 21, 2016 at 11:02 am

    You do realize that the voice acting business in the U.S is very… and i mean very small. Hench the reason they always have the same voice-overs and barely any change.

    These will impact all Union related one’s meaning a downgrade of overal quality meaning most ppl will switch most likely to japanese to get the quality it deserves.

    At this point it seems more that english voice actors want to be treated as A list celebrity’s which they aren’t really.

  20. Audie Bakerson
    Audie Bakerson
    October 21, 2016 at 11:02 am

    And nothing of value was lost.

  21. SuperDuperSenpai
    October 21, 2016 at 11:05 am

    The VA industry in America is nothing like in Japan. I could see these companies just dropping them completely and looking for cheaper talent.

  22. Migi
    October 21, 2016 at 11:05 am

    Not for anime games, they’ll most likely go Koei Tecmo style and kill english dubs to save cost. YAY!!!!

  23. Shiggy Diggy Doo
    Shiggy Diggy Doo
    October 21, 2016 at 11:23 am

    I most certainly don’t

  24. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 21, 2016 at 11:24 am

    Imagine speaking, constantly, for a few hours. Your voice will get a bit sore, right? Now add in grunts, screams, yells, etc. on top of that. Now, add in pitch-changing or accents that aren’t normal to the person, so they’re straining themselves to maintain the vocal shift. It adds up, and can easily result in permanent damage. That, if nothing else, is a serious point that needs to be addressed.

  25. Raziel Barkrai
    Raziel Barkrai
    October 21, 2016 at 11:30 am

    Ok. It’s not like there’s hundreds of other people wanting to do voice acting for a lower salary. Bring in the new blood.

  26. Snugdarkly
    October 21, 2016 at 11:31 am

    Can we just have games without voice acting again?

  27. Mr0303
    October 21, 2016 at 11:31 am

    Yeah, Tara Strong is barely in anything. She really struggles to find a job. /s

  28. Mr0303
    October 21, 2016 at 11:32 am

    Let them be silent then.

    There is plenty of fresh talent just waiting to be discovered.

  29. Etherblaze
    October 21, 2016 at 11:46 am

    I don’t really need English VA. Or VA at all once there’s subtitles.

    So… shrug?

    Like voices are nice and all, and sometimes they help elevate the experience (think Grigori from Dragon’s Dogma), but I mean… we can do without them. A lot of stuff is HELD BACK by VA as well. Since you have to pay VA, you are limited in the amount of dialogue you can put in.

    And IIRC when FF12 came out, Square Enix hired theater actors to do the VA, and they were great despite some minor annoyances (BAHAMOOT)

    So if these guys want to strike for this, then sure, great. I’m sure there are people who are willing to do good work for this kind of money. What’s their pay like? I’m sure it’s not a lot. But devs also get paid in peanuts as well, so I can’t really feel sorry for these people.

  30. OldPalpy
    October 21, 2016 at 11:52 am

    Oh my I’m literally shaking at the thought of not hearing Hale and Blum do the same voice for the millionth time.

  31. Jigsy
    October 21, 2016 at 12:03 pm

    Although I can’t stand Western VAs (Seiyuu4Lyfe)…

    >[…] more clarity between auditions and projects […]

    There’s an SJW angle in that somewhere…

  32. Raziel Barkrai
    Raziel Barkrai
    October 21, 2016 at 12:04 pm

    I think fighting and action games benefit from having voice acting since timing and reaction of attacks can be based off audio cues. Of course those could probably be easily replaced with other sounds.

  33. M37 TrenchGun
    M37 TrenchGun
    October 21, 2016 at 12:09 pm

    Bring in the strikebreakers, time to cut out the dead wood.

  34. FrostSalamander
    October 21, 2016 at 12:20 pm

    Good riddance. We need some new, fresh voices anyway.
    Burch most certainly won’t be missed; spoiled bitch. Not even the developers and programmers who make the damned games get those sorts of royalties or special treatment. But oh oh, the VOICE ACTORS need “better working conditions.” They make it sound as if they have to record in a back alley inside an empty dumpster or something. Meanwhile developers and programmers work endless hours and overtimes just to meet publisher deadlines and they sure as hell don’t get royalties.

    Anyone else also notice that over half the games in that list are kids’ games?

  35. Anonymoose
    October 21, 2016 at 12:59 pm

    I’d give a shit if they started more effort into their work. Especially with the ‘localizations’.

  36. RetroGamer
    October 21, 2016 at 1:04 pm

    There are plenty of people out there who are capable of filling the roles and would LOVE the opportunity to do so.

  37. DrearierSpider
    October 21, 2016 at 1:08 pm

    Bring back the text based RPG’s!

  38. the Southerner
    the Southerner
    October 21, 2016 at 1:43 pm

    These assholes want even more money?

  39. OSad
    October 21, 2016 at 1:53 pm

    Gonna side with the devil on this one and say that I hope the actors get some better pay. I also hope that some day, game developers don’t have to go through zangyou downpour and get some proper compensation as well.

    If the actors can’t perform whatever the director wants up to the standards of his vision, then they should get dropped. But if they can, then they should be paid their fair share.

    (Honestly I don’t know a damn thing about this subject)

  40. random
    October 21, 2016 at 2:02 pm

    Yeah man I’m sure that they want to hire youtube voice actors who only have experience reading scripts.

  41. Neppers
    October 21, 2016 at 2:34 pm

    David Hayter is the biggest fucking hack. So many male VAs could do the “grizzled old veteran” voice; he did it for an iconic character over ten years ago and is still holding onto it.

  42. Maria Maasaa
    Maria Maasaa
    October 21, 2016 at 3:15 pm

    Wasn’t really a serious question (as I know voice acting can be hard due to those issues based on interviews). But here’s a serious statement. It sounds like they are telling the writers of the games what kind of characters to write. “Don’t write a character that screams or makes my voice feel weird.” It sounds more like “don’t make this hard on me” even when they aren’t the only people on the projects.

  43. Syndromic
    October 21, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    Whatever the outcome is, it’s a win-win situation for gamers in general. Dev doesn’t have to spend so much on budget to get a big name VA and focus more on the game itself.

  44. Kiwi Hoy
    Kiwi Hoy
    October 21, 2016 at 3:59 pm

    All the best English voice tracks have been done by VA’s I couldn’t name anyway. Why would you want these hacks over the people who brought the SoulsBorne games or Legacy of Kain series to life so well?

  45. subnet
    October 21, 2016 at 4:16 pm

    yes goyim ignore the wrong picture gevalt

  46. Touma
    October 21, 2016 at 5:00 pm

    Sure, if half of them didn’t suck at their jobs, I’d support them.

  47. EinMugenTenshin
    October 21, 2016 at 5:24 pm

    I for one support the idea of everyone, including the voice actors, getting their fair share. I would not know what that would be in this industry, but a sense of fairness is important to keep the morale up.

    I remember the days when voice actors, especially doing “anime style” type of characters, were complete trash. Things has gotten better, even to the point where I can’t remember the last time I heard complete trash. Sure, we may have a while before everyone is completely up to par with their Jpn counterparts, where you still get some “completely blown out of the park by how good they are”- performances that really make or break the character (which in a way speaks volumes about why not all the voicing is like that), and maybe that is experience related. Then again, it could also be an understanding of the culture and what people expect from the character that matters, where some “more seasoned veterans” simply don’t get it, while the younger crowd does. Why it has gotten better I do not know, but I hope they’ll continue to strive for even further greatness together with their peers in animation and writing.

  48. Kiryu
    October 21, 2016 at 5:29 pm

    Let them crash and burn,talentless greedy fucks.

  49. DariusQ
    October 21, 2016 at 6:58 pm

    This won’t even inconvenience the gaming industry as a whole. We might even finally get some new fresh talent.

  50. Jack Thompson
    Jack Thompson
    October 21, 2016 at 7:22 pm

    Wasn’t Blum Spike from Cowboy Bebop? I thought he was a good voice actor?

  51. TophatKiyaki
    October 21, 2016 at 7:37 pm

    Blum is a great voice actor, but he’s in literally fucking everything.

    He’s the Tera Strong of Video Games. Somewhere along the line you gotta figure it might be a good idea to have someone other than Blum in your game’s credits.

  52. GameZard
    October 21, 2016 at 7:44 pm

    Anything that hurts EA, Activison, and WB games is good by me.

  53. GameZard
    October 21, 2016 at 7:45 pm

    Be careful as Metal Gear fans are easy to anger.

  54. GameZard
    October 21, 2016 at 7:48 pm

    He is but he only have a few voices.

  55. DDD-kun
    October 21, 2016 at 7:52 pm

    Typecasting. Blum has some formidable range. However, studios order only a limited number of voices from him. So you get Shishio, you get Spike, and that’s about all you get. You’re not permitted anything else.

  56. Dr. Roswell. W
    Dr. Roswell. W
    October 21, 2016 at 8:01 pm

    >Ashley Burch pulling out a harmonica and playing a soulful rendition of “Go Down Moses.”

  57. ScarredBushido
    October 21, 2016 at 8:04 pm

    i liked her in lolipop chainsaw….

  58. ScarredBushido
    October 21, 2016 at 8:05 pm

    he also was onizuka in GTO which is the same fukin voice.

  59. Conner Garry Sennett
    Conner Garry Sennett
    October 21, 2016 at 8:08 pm

    Some of you are assholes. Voice actors work hard and when they want some better conditions all you have to say is “good riddance” or “fuck them”? Wow.

  60. Mr0303
    October 21, 2016 at 8:10 pm

    I like her too. I haven’t played that one, but she is a very talented voice actress. I’ve been listening to her since the 90s. It’s a shame to see her taking part in this intimidation campaign.

  61. Maria Maasaa
    Maria Maasaa
    October 21, 2016 at 8:17 pm

    And why is it so small? Because they don’t want to branch out. They already shell out tons of money for the people they have. And god forbid the person is a movie actor to boot. What they really need is more unknowns who can do the job just as well. And not take up 1/3 of the budget of the game.

  62. Joe Schmoe
    Joe Schmoe
    October 21, 2016 at 8:20 pm

    Yeah, Im more on the apathetic to fuck ’em side on this one.
    Last time this was brought up, some of their demands were unreasonable, like royalties when not even the devs get that.
    And ballooning budget is something that AAA games have needed to rear in.

  63. GamesGoodMeGood
    October 21, 2016 at 8:23 pm

    “more clarity between auditions and projects”

    “I refuse to be the voice of a damsel-in-distress female character because it disrespects women, make her a Mary Sue and I will consider it”

  64. brainiac7
    October 21, 2016 at 8:50 pm

    Better working conditions? Like what are they chained to their microphones? I think most of the apathy or hostility comes from the last time they threatened a strike and were asking for some pretty unreasonable things. Many of them are terrible at their jobs and its a super small group of people doing almost all of the games and they have been pretty anti letting new talent into the industry too. I dont know about anyone else but I have never bought a game because of who was doing the voice acting. Not saying they are completely unimportant but it really depends on the type of project it is.

    Jennifer Hale for example is not a bad voice actress but she is in literally everything. I would prefer the voice roles be more openned up to more actors and not seemingly this exclusive club of 2 dozen voices doing everything.

  65. BrahmsTwiter
    October 21, 2016 at 9:01 pm

    B-b-but where under heaven’s sky will they find other people who can recite lines written by somebody else?

  66. Conner Garry Sennett
    Conner Garry Sennett
    October 21, 2016 at 9:03 pm

    Some of them have to come in for hours to do work that can damage or at the very strain their vocal cords. And only a few of them really get paid all that much and it’s not like having a regular job; you basically are umemployed until your next gig. I’ve been following the voice of Ratchet and it’s really opened my eyes a little to what goes into voicing characters.

    And it’s sad to see so many people just completely crap on these talented people. What’s next? Are we going to crap on the writers?

  67. Donwel
    October 21, 2016 at 9:06 pm

    What about the programmers (without whom these games wouldn’t exist, remember, thus putting these hacks out of a job) who often have to work 12+ hour shifts? And for less pay than these idiots. Do you see them striking? Didn’t think so.

  68. Conner Garry Sennett
    Conner Garry Sennett
    October 21, 2016 at 9:08 pm

    The fact you said hack again proves that people still don’t believe voice acting is as legitimate as acting or that anyone can just hop into the recording booth and do it, thus they shouldn’t be compensated much or given decent working conditions. We’re not talking about programmers, but guess what? If they were on strike I wouldn’t be putting them down. They deserve just as much respect for their tireless work as any other person who has contributed to making a game what it is.

    Do all games need voice acting? No, but when it’s there and it’s great they breathe life into some of these characters. For some, Hale is THE voice of Commander Shepard. Mark Hamill is THE Joker. Without their voices, would it even be the same? Is it fair to say they don’t deserve decent pay and that it doesn’t matter if they tax their voices because games don’t need them?

  69. Ckarasu
    October 21, 2016 at 9:26 pm

    The phrase you quoted sounds more like them asking to tell them more about the character and their role in the plot when they audition.

  70. Ckarasu
    October 21, 2016 at 9:28 pm

    Gonna side with the voice actors on this one. The terms they offer might seem a bit much, but they’ll likely reach a more moderate compromise if this works.

  71. OldPalpy
    October 21, 2016 at 9:32 pm

    He is the problem is he does that same voice or a gruffer sounding one in possibly 85% of games released in the last 15 years.

  72. GamesGoodMeGood
    October 21, 2016 at 10:02 pm

    Yes it does, at the surface it sounds all good and proper doesn’t it? Obviously it means to get a good idea of the character’s personality and role in the game, so the voice actor/actress can garner a good idea of what persona he/she needs to adopt in order to do the job as best as possible.

    But when you think about, there’s potentially another outcome.

    And that outcome is the voice actor’s/actress’ personal politics that might make them refuse to voice a character if that character isn’t the “right” for them.

    If these no-marks get famous, into mainstream and in high demand, you can almost guarantee that they’ll start injecting their own politics into it – especially the female voice actors. Because after all, shitting on female characters who are appealing to male gamers is all the rage now, and can get you massive SJW mainstream media PR points now right?

    Maybe it’s me jumping the gun a bit there. But in this climate of shitty SJW culture, I wouldn’t be surprised if what I said would happen.

  73. Ckarasu
    October 21, 2016 at 10:09 pm

    Abuse can result from just about any policy. I’m all for this request, as it gives the actors a more “honest” audition as well as more time to get to know their role. Some people may refuse to voice a character they don’t like, but that’s their right. I don’t think it would ever get so bad as to have them dictate the characters themselves. The studios would move on to someone else, if that was a problem.

  74. Ubrokemygrill?
    October 21, 2016 at 11:04 pm

    The worst part is that they want royalties. Over programmers. Fucking incredible.

  75. Zombie_Barioth
    October 21, 2016 at 11:09 pm

    Or it could be that VA doesn’t pay as well as pretty much every other form of acting, so not as many people get into it.

    I doubt the Hollywood actors get payed as well as they normally would either, just more than the unknown guys.

    I’d say this is a good thing overall. People complain about ‘shitty’ voice acting, what they’re on strike for is why.

    I don’t see it as them wanting to be treated like A-list celebrities, they just want to be taken more seriously.

    Somebody above already screen-caped Tara Strong saying the negotiator told her “nobody cares about the voices”. I’d be pissed off too if I were her.

  76. InfectedAI
    October 21, 2016 at 11:56 pm

    The heck am I looking at?

  77. InfectedAI
    October 22, 2016 at 12:38 am

    Sounds more like they’re saying give us breaks during intense sessions.

    Looking at social media posts one VA complained about having to do strenuous VO for hours on end every day for a job. It left his voice fucked up for 6 months unable to work.

    Out of all of this it seems to be the only demand I think is fair. Maybe not their exact demand, but it should be broached.

  78. InfectedAI
    October 22, 2016 at 12:42 am

    How so? Knowing what the heck you’re doing voice work for seems reasonable. I’ve heard VAs complain after a bad release that if they had known more about the project they would’ve been able to do a more suitable voice.

  79. InfectedAI
    October 22, 2016 at 12:44 am

    Your logic is borderline lets ban pencils because you can stab people with them.

    The demand is perfectly reasonable. Don’t let paranoia set in and start seeing the SJW boogieman everywhere.

  80. InfectedAI
    October 22, 2016 at 12:47 am

    Hahaha! That’s such horrible logic, but it made me laugh so thanks. ‘Cuts can be treated and heal naturally, so stop asking for gloves and breaks and get back to the mine!’

  81. Dighunter
    October 22, 2016 at 1:21 am

    One VA was posting pictures of their expensive Hawaii vacation last week… and you want me to believe you have it rough?! Your average American graduate can’t go two weeks to Hawaii if they saved up for 10 years you sick psychos!

  82. Riosine
    October 22, 2016 at 1:23 am

    Horrible logic you say. Ok let me review it:
    1.A guy build its argument in vocal cord damage as a long term effect and subtly implies its irreversible.
    2.I point its curable in [current year]
    3. you whine about it not solving a problem in a Non sequitur manner.

    I posted that, mainly, cause people usually forget to update their knowledge and often operate under obsolete facts.

    In addition people who work extensively with their body, be it Sportmans, singers, dancers or wrestlers, Are guaranteed to get injuried eventually in their careers,So I don’t see how this is non trivial among VA.

    I would also expect from these kind of professionals to knwon techniques to mitigate their cummulative damage or check with a and Otorhinolaryngologist every 6 month, If that what they are demanding then fine, but as far as I know it isn’t

  83. True Goddess Reincarnation
    True Goddess Reincarnation
    October 22, 2016 at 3:46 am

    No more Atlus dubs? Good.

  84. NathanEH
    October 22, 2016 at 3:57 am

    I know this is selfish but if it means I avoid less games due to less total Ashley Burch and Wil Wheaton, I’m happy with this strike going on forever.

  85. Syndromic
    October 22, 2016 at 4:37 am

    I used to be a fervent defender of dubbed VA’s. No more. There’s that delusional fantasy growing within them that they are world famous rock stars. It’s bad enough hollywood actors are doing the same. And Hale happened to be the voice of commander Shepard because Bioware is obsessed with her. She was given the roles by Bioware as early as 2001.

  86. Migi
    October 22, 2016 at 5:27 am

    You do realize you just summed up the problem,
    All high profile cartoons use Actors as voice-overs And not to forget that if there are too many there will be less money to be made cause the market would Crushed cause you’d get to many Voice actors in a industry that doesen’t have much work to begin with.

    cause i expect now that they are on strike the non-union folks will be getting their jobs for simply not complaining and take what they can get.

    I don’t think Voice-acting pay is all that bad compared to the work you need to do for it, especially considering you can’t find a standard rate for english voice acting

    Tthe more breaks is understandible but that’s just a cover front to get ppl to sympathise with them or else they’d need to include more company’s on that list and those are all high profile tagets that make the most money out of their games so their real agenda is money.

  87. Aken Bosch
    Aken Bosch
    October 22, 2016 at 5:39 am

    How much do you think they are getting payed?

  88. Guin
    October 22, 2016 at 7:34 am

    Spoiled, entitled brats I say.

  89. Guin
    October 22, 2016 at 7:38 am

    Be honest. You’re sleeping with one of them, are you?

  90. Guin
    October 22, 2016 at 7:41 am

    At some point she’s going to demand her own trailer and make-up crew because she honestly believes she’s hot shit when she’s just shit.

  91. ivanchu77
    October 22, 2016 at 7:43 am

    I rather play with japanese voices anyway, hopefully this means they get rid of these dudes more often and put japanese voices instead, especially in JRPGs

  92. British_Otaku
    October 22, 2016 at 8:06 am

    You could say they’re nuclear.

  93. Kaneda
    October 22, 2016 at 8:18 am

    lol this wont end well for them.

  94. XERW
    October 22, 2016 at 8:47 am

    > kill english dubs to save cost.

    That’s one solid plan to increase profit margin!

  95. Yabloko Molloco San
    Yabloko Molloco San
    October 22, 2016 at 9:42 am

    Here’s hoping the coders themselves make an union. They really deserve to improve their conditions.

  96. Donwel
    October 22, 2016 at 10:24 am

    >The fact you said hack again
    >you said hack
    Check who you’re replying to, dopey. That was my first comment, but now I am going to call them hacks again, because that’s what they are.
    They get enough money for what they do and what they do isn’t even that important to the process to begin with. Does a game cease to exist because it has no voices in it? No, it doesn’t. These idiots have ideas above their station and think they can’t be easily replaced. My opinion is that devs should start doing voices again like they used to.

  97. 2501
    October 22, 2016 at 10:31 am

    I’m properly in the minority with this opinion but i don’t very much care about this common wave of video game voice actors. Like i’m sure VA’s like Nolan North and Troy Baker are talented but most of the time they just phone it in or use dumb accents.

  98. Migi
    October 22, 2016 at 10:36 am

    Koei tecmo is pumping out new I.P the moment they killed english dub so you could actually say it saves a lot off cost.

  99. 2501
    October 22, 2016 at 10:41 am

    Simon Templeman, Stephen Russsell etc. Some of the very best video game voice actors ever.

  100. 2501
    October 22, 2016 at 10:43 am

    Kojima did nuthin wrong (but totally did.)

  101. OverlordZetta
    October 22, 2016 at 10:44 am

    You’d never know he was Guilmon back in the day.

  102. 2501
    October 22, 2016 at 10:47 am

    That’s true, like listen to his character in Valkyria Chronicles, it’s literary Spike Spiegel.

  103. 2501
    October 22, 2016 at 10:53 am

    The voice acting in FFXII is soooo bloody good, it straight up puzzles me that Square went back to hiring fucking morons to voice their characters.

  104. Vcom7418
    October 22, 2016 at 12:30 pm

    A lot of people are saying bring in the new voices, and that certainly needs to happen, but it’s a shame if some VAs go away completely.
    What exactly do they want to accomplish with this strike? More money? When game devs already don’t get a lot for working overtime?
    PS. I checked the list. Crash Bandicoot Remaster has been afftected by the strike as well. Who did they hire anyway? Can’t they just update the old sound-bites? THere weren’t that much voice acting in the game anyway.

  105. DDD-kun
    October 22, 2016 at 12:55 pm

    That’s a case for a lot of actors and it’s pretty sad. Studios are overly-cautious about recognition when they shouldn’t be.

  106. DDD-kun
    October 22, 2016 at 12:56 pm

    I’ll have to do that. Never did run the dub with Valkyria Chronicles because the script is different enough for me to suspect there are localization issues.

  107. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 22, 2016 at 1:21 pm

    Not in the least. It’s asking for proper breaks so that they can rest their voice so they don’t damage it. High-strain vocal work is fine if given proper rest during it.

  108. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 22, 2016 at 1:23 pm

    If that were true, then they’d have already compromised on the serious health issues over the past two years.

  109. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 22, 2016 at 1:24 pm

    Uh, no, that;’s literally about them wanting to know what the fuck they’re going to be voicing in the project proper. In most cases, they don’t know what they’re doing until in the booth, by design of the company hiring them.

  110. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 22, 2016 at 1:26 pm

    Median wage for VA work is 96K, according to Maiyannah, writer/owner of Highland Arrow. That seems rather different than what you’re suggesting.

  111. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 22, 2016 at 1:27 pm

    TBF, singers, dancers, wrestlers, sportsmen, etc. also are protected and treated properly if they get injured, and things are set up to prevent them becoming permanent injuries if they get a minor one.

  112. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 22, 2016 at 1:32 pm

    96K median wage, according to Maiyannah of Highland Arrow.

  113. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 22, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    96K median wage according to Maiyannah of Highland Arrow, actually.

  114. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 22, 2016 at 1:36 pm

    Top billing actors, certainly not, but decent ones? I’d say yes; according to Maiyannah at Highland Arrow, median wage for VA is 96K.

  115. Nobuoa Schniell
    Nobuoa Schniell
    October 22, 2016 at 2:20 pm

    They get paid higher wages than most of the staff working on the game and are demanding royalties when the developers don’t get any. So yes, fuck them.

  116. Kakaku
    October 22, 2016 at 2:21 pm

    Not really. You need to know what a character looks and acts like before you’re able to play them properly. A good number of the poor voice performances in video games have to do with voice actors not knowing who the hell they’re playing.

    That’s why Fire Emblem Fates had such consistently lackluster voices and if Keythe Farely is anyone to be trusted (he’s part of the union so maybe not) he didn’t even know he was playing Kellog in Fallout 4 until the actual game was released.

    In the case that a voice actor does have an SJW angle then nothing of value is lost. The original voice actor loses out on a payday and the work goes to someone else who’s better suited.

  117. Zombie_Barioth
    October 22, 2016 at 3:26 pm

    True, however that’s not the point.

    More people would shoot for other fields because they pay better and are more recognized, leaving VA as more passion/side project territory.

    It’s not exactly where you go to “make it big”.

    I seriously doubt even Hollywood actors like Troy Baker get paid as much as they would for movie gigs.

  118. ElKonsolero
    October 22, 2016 at 3:38 pm

    Wil Wheaton did voice overs for games?

  119. ElKonsolero
    October 22, 2016 at 3:44 pm

    Awww Legacy if Kain, i want that series to return. Soul Reaver and the Blood Omen games are classic. I liked Defiance but it was not up to par with those games.

  120. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 22, 2016 at 5:01 pm

    Actually, more likely to make it in vidya than in movies. At the very least, the median wage is 96K a year for game VA talent, so they aren’t lacking.

  121. Zombie_Barioth
    October 22, 2016 at 8:07 pm

    I don’t think most people go into VA to be the “next big thing” though. Its not just about the money.

  122. nerolak
    October 22, 2016 at 11:45 pm

    lmao all AAA companies.
    i will not be shocked AT ALL when/if they’re just replaced.

  123. nerolak
    October 22, 2016 at 11:45 pm

    yep, absolutely. that’s the american way, after all

  124. nerolak
    October 22, 2016 at 11:46 pm

    that’s insane.

  125. nerolak
    October 22, 2016 at 11:49 pm

    over programmers and the artists.
    like, goddamn, you guys are doing voices and not even doing them well half the time. higher wages for what.

  126. nerolak
    October 22, 2016 at 11:51 pm

    they likely also realised the majority of us who play ‘weeb games’ turn that shit on japanese VA anyway lmao.

    i haven’t played a game in english in ages when given the choice. i even play the witcher in polish (i tried russian, but the polish is 2gud)

    there’s no need for english voices in niche japanese games, because those who like niche japanese games prefer japanese voices.

  127. nerolak
    October 22, 2016 at 11:52 pm

    …but it’s true though. only VAs and wannabe-VAs care…

  128. orbo
    October 23, 2016 at 1:33 am

    Although some will deride them for asking for things even the devs don’t get, really both groups should be treated much better than most of them are.
    Rather than argue that one group shouldn’t get something because the other doesn’t, you should argue in favor of both of them getting better treatment.
    The video game industry makes so much money that it makes hollywood look like peanuts, and the people who do the tough grunt work shouldn’t be getting paid peanuts.

  129. nerolak
    October 23, 2016 at 2:22 am

    dude there is a fuckload of jobs where you’re unemployed until your next gig, VAing is not exclusive to that. a bunch of those jobs pay a fuckload less as well.

    in fact, every single occupation in the game industry is this way except maybe developers (but even that job can make you get shuffled around like mad, just look at nomura over the past 5 yrs). programmers are on the same fucking block. concept artists are on the same block. concept artists make far less than nearly $100k, the average is $70k. concept artists pump out enough art in a time period, for hours on end, and you don’t see those people striking despite the fact that working on a tablet for 10 hrs daily for months on end can cause serious wrist issues (not limited to carpal tunnel). a lot of them, and 3D artists and other visual artists get no recognition whatsoever either.

    what makes VAs so special, then? your wrist doesn’t tend to bounce back without serious medical attention, either. there is a major surgery involved with serious carpal tunnel.

    the only thing i can think that makes them so special is that VAing is an exclusive little club and some of these guys have gotten ridiculous notoriety and they think their fame will carry their voice in the industry. but we’ll see. i highly doubt it.

    a game cannot be made without programmers
    a game cannot be made without concept artists
    but games can and have been made without VAs… and the end product isn’t damaged severely as a result.

  130. Lex
    October 23, 2016 at 9:04 am

    It’s almost like all of game development is a shitshow!

  131. BrahmsTwiter
    October 23, 2016 at 6:22 pm

    Not only would we do it, we’d do it with a gorilla socking us in the gut as we badge in.

  132. Trouble Man
    Trouble Man
    October 24, 2016 at 4:54 pm

    If it’s so fucking easy why are you sitting in your room jerking it to Futa Club

  133. Dark Lord Ash
    Dark Lord Ash
    October 24, 2016 at 6:18 pm

    While voice acting can add (or in some cases subtract) a little to a game, it’s an element that could ultimately be dropped we would be better off for it. Games have never needed that shit and just adds costs that could be spent on something else to improve a game. That goes for both burgerland and the land of earthquake causing catfish.

  134. GonzoLewd
    October 24, 2016 at 6:36 pm

    But Atlus dubs are awesome.

  135. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 25, 2016 at 11:37 am

    You’re the one that made the argument that it’s not where you go to make it big, when in fact it is, on top of being incorrect on other fields paying better.

  136. Zombie_Barioth
    October 26, 2016 at 12:57 am

    Based on word from this Maiyannah person. 96K sounds more like above average, an anime/game VA makes something like $100-$300/hour, so that’s maybe 115K per year for an 8hr job each week. That’s probably assuming they’re unionized though. Most probably are in the middle, which it 75K, devs make 65K.

    But, aside from that, the point was also about peoples’ perception. No, voice acting isn’t where most people would go to make it big unless they already have a passion for it.

    If people want to be the next Troy Baker, its not because of his voice acting. It no secret people tend to favor musicians and live actors. They like having a face to put to the name. That’s what ‘big’ is to most people.

  137. NathanEH
    October 26, 2016 at 10:19 am

    A few times, yeah. It’s a big reason why I skipped out on Nintendo’s Project STEAM.

  138. AdoEdem
    October 26, 2016 at 3:37 pm

    Have I got a treat for Gamergate:


    If you read the article down towards to bottom, the writer goes off on an SJW tangent complaining about the whiteness of the VAs going on strike. Might be an opportunity to remind the VA community that they are now going through the same thing gamers did when games “journalism” was shitting on them.

    Maybe now they won’t be quite so eager to hop into bed with SJWs?

  139. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 26, 2016 at 3:38 pm

    That’s the *median* wage. That means that’s the 50% mark- half make more, half make less. Also, Maiyannah is the EIC of Highland Arrow, another gaming publication.

  140. Zombie_Barioth
    October 26, 2016 at 6:23 pm

    Yes, based around that particular section of the field. Most of the VA hired aren’t union, mainly because its cheaper. That means most VA aren’t actually making 96k.

    Its a bit old, but the policies haven’t changed since the 90’s.


    Yeah, seems like $200/hr is much more common, $100 is SAG’s minimum-wage, and these guys get by because they do a bit of everything. You’d be better off working commercials than games it seems.

  141. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 27, 2016 at 1:46 pm

    >Citing Polygon as a verified source for ANYTHING
    Ahahahahahahahahaahahaha, okay there, bud.

    Also, I love how entitled the VAs are in this article. They lend only their voice and nothing more, yet want treatment like they’re the big star actors up on screen. Funny.

  142. Zombie_Barioth
    October 27, 2016 at 2:36 pm

    At least I had a source, not just [insert person here] said.:P

    I don’t see how wanting to be able to negotiate their own pay makes them “entitled”. Are they making demands? No, they’re saying it’d be nice to be in such a position, which for anybody it would.

  143. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 28, 2016 at 8:12 am

    She got her stats from the US Dept. of Labor, apparently, so, there’s that.

    Being able to negotiate their own pay isn’t entitlement. It’s all the rest, where they show that they want to be treated as an A-list actor in a film (which has to do so very much more) just for their voice acting (which isn’t an easy thing- never said it was- but it’s just not comparable).

  144. Zombie_Barioth
    October 28, 2016 at 9:28 pm

    You do realize most of the actors they’re quoting actually are big-name actors don’t you? They also did acknowledge none of them have the clout for it, including the Joker himself, Troy Baker.

    As for not doing as much ads film actors, that’s not really true, and it is comparable. There isn’t much difference between the two besides a physical appearance, and even then that would also apply to CGI.

    A lot of games use motion-capture now as well, so they do a lot more than just sitting around reading lines.

  145. Kain Yusanagi
    Kain Yusanagi
    October 29, 2016 at 4:29 pm

    The amount of motion capture is minimal, several cycles for running, jumping, and other specific actions needed- IF it uses the VA to mocap, which many don’t. Nowhere near the same level as what an actual actor does, even for a mocap animated movie, even then. That physical appearance (as in,a ctually being there, acting?) is a huge part of what sells an actor, because something like 70% of communication is in body language. Only about 20% is in the tone of voice. Devs are the ones that produce that body language, the body, and the setting that the body language is expressed in. All VAs do is provide their vocal talents. Should they get better working conditions regarding their vocal health? Certainly! The rest of it is bunk. Sure, it’s a tiny amount that they want as residuals, and it wouldn’t really cost the publisher much at all (though we both know they’d never eat that cost- it’d be passed down to someone else), but that doesn’t mean they’re right to demand more for the amount of work they do.

  146. InfectedAI
    November 2, 2016 at 3:03 am

    Sorry I took a while to respond. I said it’s a horrible argument because your post was essentially saying ‘if an injury can get treated who cares if people get hurt.’

    It’s perfectly reasonable for a VA to not want to get worked until they’re hurt. There’s nothing wrong with wanting preventative measures. This is standard in most industries. Safety regulations/equipment and risking a lawsuit when employers push too far disregarding employee health/safety.

    Even if it is treatable they don’t want to and shouldn’t get hurt. Not to mention time not being able to do VO is time they don’t make money to pay the bills.

  147. Riosine
    November 2, 2016 at 12:14 pm

    Yeah I understand about that risk prevention thingy, However I don’t understand how demanding royalties and increased wages translates in better working conditions instead of in situ medical assistance .

    And even so, not even risk prevention can mitigate the effect of natural ageing that is why the article I initially posted is important along related medical research

  148. InfectedAI
    November 4, 2016 at 12:38 am

    I was only talking about the health issues, not the financial side. Yeah age will eventually become an issue for many VAs, but I think they’re more concerned with studios not making them scream in deep strange voices for 8 hours straight for multiple days until they can’t talk for a few weeks/months.

    As for royalties, personally I think that should be on a case by case basis. I can think of a few games where the VO was fantastic and the performance was a major part of the game, so I could see actors making an argument for royalties for their performance. To go to an extreme to prove a point however I don’t think anyone would argue that the voice actors for Counter-Strike:Global Offensive deserve royalties. I can’t speak much about a wage increase as I’m not terrible familiar with how much voice actors make.

  149. nerolak
    November 25, 2016 at 2:49 am

    you remember who it was?