Okay, so today I just tried out the new Arbiter DLC leader, and I was very happy with how he works, but the voice seemed a little off in some ways and it reminded me of something else I wanted to discuss, so I decided to knock both things out of the way here. The voices for both the Shipmaster and the Arbiter. They’re okay, but I think some things need to be addressed for both of them.
I’ll start with the base game first - the Shipmaster’s in-game voice is very hard to tell apart from that of a brute’s. Honestly, I always imagine a brute when I hear his voice. But it’s not because it’s unfitting for his character - I’ve read his backstory, it seems appropriate for his personality, so it’s not a casting issue. It’s a sound /effect/ issue. The Shipmaster’s voice, when actually playing him as a leader, severely lacks that “lizard lip” feel that elites have been given since the beginning of Halo - I don’t know quite how to describe the effect besides being “wobbly woobly sci fi alien”, a kind of echo. It’s done right for his appearance in the campaign during that one cinematic cutscene - so you have what ever kind of filter ready, but for some reason just didn’t use it for the guy’s voice when actually in game. I think he would sound much better in-game if you took his lines and put them through the same kind of voice filter used in the cinematic. It would make him definitely sound like how an Elite should.
With that out of the way - I’d like to explain what I meant for the Arbiter. He doesn’t sound like the same voice actor from the first game (though honestly I don’t know, he could be - maybe the guy’s voice just changed since). And that’s okay really, I mean I was really caught off guard with what you did with Captain Cutter’s voice, but as I played the campaign I realized the new guy you picked makes him a much more interesting and relatable character. The problem is I feel like you guys tried to do that to the Arbiter too, or maybe the actor wasn’t given enough direction.
Whoever the new voice actor is, he doesn’t sound bad - most of his lines are fine, but then there’s some that just absolutely break it for me and seem way out of character. It’s not a case of bad casting, but it seems like some of his line-takes should have been redone. This Arbiter is supposed to be very aggressive and temperamental - immensely narcissistic and reckless. But some of his lines feel very oddly spirited instead of spiteful. I can’t point out really which lines I’m talking about because it’s like one line for every three takes of whatever alert or notification leaders give - I.E There are usually three takes used for a leader when he tells you a building finished. Well, his third take always seems to be that “happy go lucky” voice that contradicts the unusually unruly and zealous crusader that he is supposed to be. I think he should sound angrier or more impatient than he currently does. Especially since he’s canonically dead - you know, dying kind of pisses people off.
The Arbiter’s actual hero unit is both the best and worst part of the voice acting though. He sounds pretty on-key for most of the things he says as a unit, but in just the few minutes of using him I noticed a lot of his combat sounds are just…hilarious. His “Hooohhhh!!!”, “MMMMMMMMMMMM”, “RAAAAAAWR” and “yaaaaaaaaaaah” sound like play-fighting. This is…bad. It’s really, really bad - the worst in the entire game. I feel like the same voice actor can do better too that’s the thing, you just gotta care a little more than that. So please, can we get this patched a little later?
And one final thing I’d like to add is more of a technical issue/suggestion. I don’t know how useful the new Phantoms should be for the Arbiter, but I really like the voice you got for this unit. It’s unique and interesting, but a little too quiet. I know he’s supposed to be a soft-spoken pilot, but I think it’s a volume issue. Every other unit in the game is almost twice as loud as he is. I think we should have the volume of the Phantom unit’s dialog turned up just a little bit to match up with the rest of the game.