Coffee Talk #217: Who’s Your Favorite Videogame Voice Actor?

Welcome to Coffee Talk! Let’s start off the day by discussing whatever is on your (nerd chic) mind. Every morning I’ll kick off a discussion and I’m counting on you to participate in it. If you’re not feelin’ my topic, feel free to start a chat with your fellow readers and see where it takes you. Whether you’re talking about videogames, Intelligentsia’s El Salvador El Ausol Honeyed Pacamara, Golden Boy Promotions suing Top Rank Promotions, or how the lawsuit is horrible for (the already messed up) sport of boxing, Coffee Talk is the place to do it.

Today’s column was inspired by RPadholic bsukenyan’s wish for more Judi Dench in videogames. While I was terribly amused by his wish, I also wondered about your favorite videogame voice actors and actresses. At the very least, strong performances can cover up some weak scriptwriting. At best, great voice acting can truly bring a game’s story to life. As for my favorite, it’s definitely the legendary Cam Clarke.

I became a Cam Clarke fan from his work as Maximillian Sterling and (especially) Lance “Lancer” Belmont in the Robotech cartoons. As I started paying attention to acting in videogames, I noticed that his name popped up…a lot. The man has performed in more than 100 games! From Metal Gear Solid to Baldur’s Gate to God of War to World of Warcraft to Assassin’s Creed, chances are you’ve played dozens of games Clarke has acted in.

Now it’s your turn! Who are some of your favorite videogame voice actors and actresses?

HTC Video Shows Off Desire HD and New Sense UI

The HTC Desire HD has me drooling and this sizzle reel has increased my drool flow to waterfall levels (too gross for you?). Seriously though, this clip shows off this Google Android phone’s features, as well as the latest additions to HTC’s Sense user interface. While I found it interesting, I also found it too long. Most people aren’t going to watch a seven-minute video on a mobile phone. Perhaps the company should hire me to produce its videos. Ha!

Vote For an October Xbox Live Deal of the Week

Microsoft is letting Xbox Live Gold members select an upcoming Xbox Live Deal of the Week. It’s a smart move that keeps the community involved and engaged. The choices include:

  • Deathspank for 33% off
  • Perfect Dark for 50% off
  • Assorted Dragon Age: Origins DLC discounts
  • Assorted Trials HD DLC discounts
  • Assorted Battlefield: Bad Company 2 discounts

I’m going to log in and vote for Dragon Age so that I can support the boys and girls at BioWare. What’s your vote going to be?


Planet Michael: An MMO Based on Michael Jackson

I swear I’m not making any of this up — I just received a press release on Planet Michael, an MMO based on Michael Jackson. What does the King of Pop have to do with a massively multiplayer online game? Here’s some press release info to help you (and me) figure it out:

SEE Virtual Worlds, an entertainment company developing a virtual reality universe of connected planets tied to licensed franchises, today announced a collaborative deal with the Michael Jackson Estate to publish Planet Michael, a massively multiplayer online virtual world set to launch in late 2011. Planet Michael will offer fans around the globe an innovative, first-of-its-kind interactive gaming and social experience that truly celebrates Michael Jackson’s extraordinary life as an artist and humanitarian.

The new planet, currently under development and slated for launch next year, will be an immersive virtual space themed after iconic visuals drawn from Michael’s music, his life and the global issues that concerned him. Entire continents will be created that will celebrate Michael’s unique genius in a way that underscores his place as the greatest artist of all time. Michael’s longtime fans will feel at home as they find themselves in places that seem familiar and yet unknown at the same time, and new generations will discover and experience Michael’s life in a way never before imagined. At its core, Planet Michael is a massive social gaming experience that will allow everyone, from the hardcore fan to the novice, to connect and engage in collaborative in-game activities with people worldwide.

Hrm. I thought only Mormons got their own planets in the afterlife. Also, do I get this or a Hello Kitty Online account? Decisions, decisions. Anyway, I’m anxiously awaiting all the jokes you can make about a Michael Jackson MMO. Let the invasion of Planet Michael begin!!!

PS3 Firmware 3.50 Available, Adds 3D Blu-ray Support

Hopefully some of you catch this before you head to work or school so that you can start downloading PlayStation 3 firmware version 3.50. I’m sure there are tons of 3D Blu-ray movies you’re dying to watch when you get back home. *snicker* Here are some other additions, courtesy of PlayStation Blog:

Facebook Integration: Developers will be able to create PS3 games that have more interaction with Facebook. Once compatible PS3 titles are available, PS3 users can choose to access public information on Facebook — including user name, profile, uploaded photos and friends list — to enhance their gameplay experience.

Grief Reporting Function: Users can send claim reports directly from the XMB for any inappropriate messages they receive from other PlayStation Network users. This feature is accessible from the option menu of the messages list in the FRIENDS category.

Developers accessing Facebook information via games could be very cool…and very scary. My big fear is that Activision CEO Bobby Kotick will get all my info through one of his upcoming Bungie games, somehow allowing him to buy me. Hmmm…Bobby Kotick is Emperor Palpatine and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is Darth Vader?!? Nah. That works too well. That can’t possibly be true.

Now please excuse me. I feel someone choking me through the Force.


(Possibly Insane) Intel Piloting CPU Upgrades Via Scratch-Off Cards

Imagine unlocking the full power of your PC’s CPU via scratch-off card. That’s an (incredibly stupid) idea Intel is testing out. My PC industry analyst friend Rick called me yesterday and this is one of the topics we discussed. I was convinced that he was just f*cking with me until he sent the URL for Intel’s Upgrade Service program. I’m still having a hard time believing it. It’s just so….

Basically, you buy a PC. It comes with a gimped CPU. You buy a code to make it normal.

Does anyone else find this to be an amazingly moronic idea from a very smart company?!? There must be an awful lot of glue sniffing going on at Intel.


Pokemon Apokelypse: A Dark, Grim, and Violent Pokemon Fan Film

You must watch this excellent live action Pokemon fan film called Pokemon Apokelypse. It’s a dramatic and dark version of the Pokemon cartoon that’s beloved around the world. Parts of it are campy and parts of it are cool. You’ll giggle as Ash Ketchum says the theme song lyrics, “I want to be the best…like no one ever was,” with grim determination. Team Rocket’s Jesse and James doing their “Prepare for trouble! And make it double!” bit while packing guns is pleasantly twisted. Electrode being used as a car bomb with his “explosion” attack? Awesome!

This might be the best thing I’ve seen all month (outside of my Asia travels) and I can’t wait to get your thoughts on the vid!