As games progress, our standards for them change. Even as early as the start of the 2000s, most RPGamers were willing to tolerate half-hearted voice acting. These days not only are our standards much higher, but big name Hollywood actors are lending more and more help to the industry. This year, we decided to recognize the RPGs with the best voice acting. While other games were not bad, only one stood head and shoulders above the rest in 2009.
"By Andraste's flaming sword, Wynne, I know where babies come from!" Not only does Dragon Age: Origins feature well-written (and often genuinely funny) dialog, that dialog is delivered excellently by a well-cast group of voice actors. The main cast gives emotionally-nuanced performances and helps to create the personalities of their characters via consistent acting. Even minor characters are well-voiced, from a group of devious elven panhandlers to the ubiquitous righteous Templars.
With a few exceptions, the dialects spoken by characters from Ferelden's various classes and cultures are consistent as well, adding realism to the game world. Overall, Dragon Age: Origins is an excellent exhibit of professional voice work in an RPG, and should be an example for other game companies. It also receives a Special Achievement Award for Non-Scottish-Accented Dwarves.
by Becky Cunningham, Michael Cunningham