Not enough bang for the buck in fully VO-ing MMOs, Crypic says

An MMO where every character, no matter how insignificant or important, is fully voiced, in multiple languages no less, which is what BioWare is doing in Star Wars: The Old Republic, is kind of a big deal. And a lot of work. Too much work to be worth it if you ask Star Trek Online developer Cryptic Studios’ executive producer Craig Zinkievich.

“It adds something to the game, but I don’t think that VO-ing all of your text provides for that big a bang for the buck in terms of immersion,” Zinkievich told VideoGamer. “What we want to make sure we do is be able to have a pipeline, is be able to make content and get that content out to the player as soon as possible after launch, and continue to update the game and continue to do things to the game. Putting that big huge VO section right in that pipeline makes things a little bit more difficult in terms of getting content out.”

Regardless of his thoughts on its fully voiced characters, Zinkievich says BioWare’s upcoming MMO “looks like a pretty exciting game” and sees some of the things it’s doing as “pretty interesting” but is quick to point out that the two games will be offering different experiences, “In the end the two games will end up being vastly different experiences. Star Wars: The Old Republic right now looks cool and I’m excited to play it, but it also looks a little bit more like a standard MMO, to me, at least, wherein at Cryptic we are trying to push the bounds of the moment to moment gameplay.”