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Accents: The Wrong Kind of Immersion


57 posts in this topic

Posted

Balenos and Serendia will both have NPCs speaking U.S. American English
Calpheon will have British English
Mediah has Australian English
Valencia will receive an Arabian Acccent
Elves in Kamasylvia will speak Irish.

I hate to say it, but this is possibly the worst direction the devs could have gone into for accents. I understand if it was done for costs, but honestly this kills an aspect of Black Desert's beautiful lore. The appeal to me in this game was that it wasn't somewhere I was going to have to see the same western European fantasy. Italian / basque Calpheon? Beautiful German / French Serendia? Turkish-inspired Mediah? These were the things that appealed to me coming into the game as a roleplayer and lover of fantasy. FINALLY it seemed like a game was willing to do more than be a regurgitation of every other fantasy game out there.

Now we have British Calpheon, Australian Median (possibly the most perplexing) and an American Balenos and Serendia. I don't quite know what to think. Was it done for costs? If it was done for costs and the lore of the game isn't supposed to support an Aussie Mediah, can you guys at least say so? I would prefer that to know it was done for costs and doesn't negate the fact that Calpheon takes its inspiration from Italy. I can deal with a Borgias twist -- make the Spanish and Italians all use a British accent, but really they're Spanish / Italians. (The Median and American accent one is the most painful, but I will live if it's said to be done for reasons beyond changing the lore.)

The idea of fighting an upward battle with lore lovers and roleplayers alike is making my brain melt. I was on the heels of writing a piece about Black Desert Online and posting it / submitting it to places about the game launching in the US with no real "American" or "traditional British" presence in lore and that's kind of gone out the window.

I don't understand the decision. I hope that if it's going to be this way at launch, it's something you guys reconsider down the line and potentially change it to how it's intended in lore.

If it's too late to change, I would hope it gets changed in the future to streamline the game play with the actual intended lore.

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Posted (edited)

I agree but I don't care either way even if it's in a language I can not understand.

Edited by Achilles

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Posted

I was ready to come in here and flame you but I kinda agree but I don't care either way as long as in a language I can understand.

Like I said, if it was done to be the easiest to understand for English speaking players and they state that in black and white, I can deal. What I can't deal with are the ramifications of it changing the actual lore.

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Posted

I agree with all of the original post's thoughts on this matter. When I first played the game, I became enamored with how massive cities like Calpheon's capital had a strong Italian Renaissance influence. I was reminded of places such as Florence, Venice, and other Tuscany locations. Similarly, places like Balenos and Serendia seemed reminiscent of Eastern and Southern Europe, so the decision to go with standard American and British accents just seems so strange to me.

As previously mentioned, if it was done for costs, then it'd be understandable. But immersion-wise, it doesn't seem like a lore-accurate choice at all to me.

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Posted (edited)

I have a suspicion that it has more to do with bad decision making than cost-efficiency. I mean it's not difficult to find voice actors who can pull off genuine European accents in NA or EU.

And I bet the English accent for Calpheon is stereotypically 'posh' or awfully c0ckney too -.- And I wonder which accent they mean when they say "American" o3o Would be stupid (but HILARIOUS) if it was 'surfer dude' XDD

Guess we'll have to wait for CBT-2 to see if it is really as bad as we fear

Edited by Matasuntha
wasn't swearing
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Posted

Being Australian myself I look forward to seeing what impact these accents have on the lore. Personally I hope they are not "Bogan" Aussie accents (as in really thick almost cringe worthy). There is nothing more off putting. I hope they keep it more Italian/British/ flavor of Australian accent.


Example of an Italian/Australian blend in English.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1jzpiCQEGmE

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Posted

I think it's fine. IMO I dont think it ruins lot at all.  I think it helps the player see as well as hear that they are in different countries. What I would hate is if for example: the accents are not done by people who naturally have them.  That would be bad. However I think it's a nice touch. If people don't like it just change the language pack. I mean how can someone just create a made up accent? It is obvious that the countries / regions in the game were inspired by real life places. 

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Posted

I agree with this as well.  Was really looking forward to some French/German/Scandinavian/Italian/Spanish/Turkish/Etc. Accents, rather than just American English, British English, and Australian English... I like Valencia being Arabic though!!  The Mediah one probably bugs me the most...

Hope it isn't too late to change. Any idea if that's the case, @CM_Jouska?

I think it's fine. IMO I dont think it ruins lot at all.  I think it helps the player see as well as hear that they are in different countries. What I would hate is if for example: the accents are not done by people who naturally have them.  That would be bad. However I think it's a nice touch. If people don't like it just change the language pack. I mean how can someone just create a made up accent? It is obvious that the countries / regions in the game were inspired by real life places. 

Right, but in Mediah they have Australian accents and Mediah is like... Mediterranean Coast with high levels of Ottoman influences, for instance.  Seems weird.

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Posted

 

Right, but in Mediah they have Australian accents and Mediah is like... Mediterranean Coast with high levels of Ottoman influences, for instance.  Seems weird.

True.  However I don't know how far into the voice over process that they are in but for me I can be happy with what they offered us.  I mean yeah I would love something like you said for mediah, but sometimes you only get so many bones and they are never perfect but I'll take it.

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Posted

True.  However I don't know how far into the voice over process that they are in but for me I can be happy with what they offered us.  I mean yeah I would love something like you said for mediah, but sometimes you only get so many bones and they are never perfect but I'll take it.

Yeah, I can relate.

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Posted

I fully support different accents for different cultures in this and other games, but yeah I agree some of the choices for what accent for what culture seems a bit odd to me, mainly the Australian accent decision.

Personally, I would have gone with a Castilian (Spain Spanish) accent for that region.

It would also be really interesting to see an Afrikaans accent used somewhere in the game.

However, for the most part I don't want to jump to conclusions as it may end up working really well.

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Posted

Yeah, I can relate.

I would just hope it's something that can be altered down the line, especially with Mediah.

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Posted

where the asian speakers at

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Posted

Like I said, if it was done to be the easiest to understand for English speaking players and they state that in black and white, I can deal. What I can't deal with are the ramifications of it changing the actual lore.

While I completely agree with you on this, I also trust the devs to have done this for a very good reason.

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Posted

where the asian speakers at

The region that the asian looking characters are from hasent been released yet. I can guess that they will soon since in the PM diary it said that more regions will possibly be implemented.  

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Posted

While I completely agree with you on this, I also trust the devs to have done this for a very good reason.

Yeah, I guess I'd like them to clarify though because already the lore arguments are starting where people are basing countries off the accents.

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Posted

Its all recorded in english because that will be the player-base. So what if Calpheon resembles a certain race/existing place? Does that mean the language there has to be spoken that way? Its not Italian/renascent, its Calpheon architecture. 

Be happy they have put regional dialogue in at all. This way, everyone in world is speaking the same language but the accents are different depending on the location (just as it is in the real world) and thats more than pretty much any mmo has given us ever. Usually, we get Generic English Bloke A, Generic English Lass B, and a sprinkling of 'Stereotypical Foreigner A/B/C' 

That said, all in all, id personally rather play it all in Korean and just have subtitles. 

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Posted

Usually, we get Generic English Bloke A, Generic English Lass B, and a sprinkling of 'Stereotypical Foreigner A/B/C' 

That's exactly what they've done. Generic region A, generic region B, generic region C, and stereotypical foreigner D.

You can't tell me that Calpheon doesn't take cues from Italy with their naming conventions. You can't tell me that Mediah didn't name their main city after a real Turkish city (Altinova) and put Medians in Ottoman inspired garb for it to be likened to Australia.

I assumed accents were there, I still assume accents are there, and no I do not agree with the accents they chose. So no, I'm not just going to "be happy" with this.

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Posted

That's exactly what they've done. Generic region A, generic region B, generic region C, and stereotypical foreigner D.

You can't tell me that Calpheon doesn't take cues from Italy with their naming conventions. You can't tell me that Mediah didn't name their main city after a real Turkish city (Altinova) and put Medians in Ottoman inspired garb for it to be likened to Australia.

I assumed accents were there, I still assume accents are there, and no I do not agree with the accents they chose. So no, I'm not just going to "be happy" with this.

Australians can play the game. IP blocks for Turkey (or so I think).

Guess that went into the thought process when they decided to tag Australian accent on into the game or something. Choice was poor but what can ya do, eh? And giving the Mediahians a turkish accent would be like rubbing salt in their wounds, I guess :c

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Posted

NPCs speaking Gaeilge?

Sold.

 

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Posted

I admit I was sort of scratching my head over this one. We see such distinct cultural flavors and influences in each nation, from their clothing to their names. The chosen accents are a little jarring to me. I would absolutely love to see a nation sporting an Aussie accent, but placing the accent on what seems to be an Ottoman/Turkish inspired sort of nation is an odd choice. I would very much love to see the distinct cultures supported by the accents that go along with them.

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Posted

Many of the names and surnames used by NPCs throughout Calpheon have pretty obvious Italian influences. I found names like Belucci, Giovanni Romano, Viano, Alfredo Lombardi, Filiberto Li Fonti, Siciliano, Annabella, just to name a few. I think it would be way more immersive to hear these people talk in a more fitting accent, but mixing Italian and English has been done before in the media, so I suppose I can understand why they went this route.

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Posted

 

You can't tell me that Calpheon doesn't take cues from Italy with their naming conventions. You can't tell me that Mediah didn't name their main city after a real Turkish city (Altinova) and put Medians in Ottoman inspired garb for it to be likened to Australia.

I assumed accents were there, I still assume accents are there, and no I do not agree with the accents they chose. So no, I'm not just going to "be happy" with this.

A building can be inspired by oriental architecture, but that doesn't mean the people who live there will sound oriental. Italian names does not equal Italian accents. 

Is my French-Canadian friend who speaks in a south western accent wrong? Is her Latino boyfriend with a Massachusetts accent wrong? Is it wrong for me to be mostly Romanian with a south western accent?

Speech is cultural. Who are you to say that the way these cultures sound is wrong just because of their naming conventions or their architecture?

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Posted

 

A building can be inspired by oriental architecture, but that doesn't mean the people who live there will sound oriental. Italian names does not equal Italian accents. 

Is my French-Canadian friend who speaks in a south western accent wrong? Is her Latino boyfriend with a Massachusetts accent wrong? Is it wrong for me to be mostly Romanian with a south western accent?

Speech is cultural. Who are you to say that the way these cultures sound is wrong just because of their naming conventions or their architecture?

You're comparing individual cases to entire cultures. I was raised in Mexico, my accent isn't as strong anymore after many years of speaking English. That doesn't mean everyone else will suddenly lose their accent or that I am wrong in not having one. Similarly, a person of Median origins perhaps no longer shows an accent after living in a different region for a time. However, we're talking about these regions and cultures as a whole. What we're arguing is that there is cultural diversity in the game, it's there in the architecture and the people, yet these elements were ignored and the team opted for something that doesn't quite fit the settings presented to us in-game. 

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Posted

You're comparing individual cases to entire cultures. I was raised in Mexico, my accent isn't as strong anymore after many years of speaking English. That doesn't mean everyone else will suddenly lose their accent or that I am wrong in not having one. Similarly, a person of Median origins perhaps no longer shows an accent after living in a different region for a time. However, we're talking about these regions and cultures as a whole. What we're arguing is that there is cultural diversity in the game, it's there in the architecture and the people, yet these elements were ignored and the team opted for something that doesn't quite fit the settings presented to us in-game. 

Architecture, naming conventions, ect. has no weight on how someone speaks. Calpheonians have Italian names, however that doesn't mean they are going to sound Italian. Mediah has Turkish/Ottoman inspired clothes/architecture, however that doesn't mean that Medians are going to sound Turkish. 

What we are used to in the real world doesn't have to be the same in a game. I could make an oriental inspired world and make the people sound British, and it would be correct because it's my own created culture. Does it sound like it fits? No, but that doesn't mean it's wrong.

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