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Tales of Voice Recording: A Tales of Xillia Update

Ted Tsung's Avatar + Posted by Ted Tsung on Nov 05, 2012 // North American Producer, Tales of Xillia

Tales of Xillia on PS3

Hello everyone, my name is Ted Tsung and I am the North American Producer for Tales of Xillia for NAMCO BANDAI Games America. I’m happy to announce that we recently completed our voice recording session for the game, an extremely important part of the localization process. It’s a huge milestone for us to pass and it means that Tales of Xillia is that much closer to its 2013 release.

Tales of Xillia on PS3Tales of Xillia on PS3

Tales of Xillia on PS3

Eight hours of voice recording across an eight week span, filled with late nights catching up on emails, proofing, and preparation for the following day. It’s a grueling process that’s both physically and mentally taxing. Despite this, it was a fantastic experience, thanks to the support from Cup of Tea, 8-4, and the voice actors. I might be looking through rose-tinted glasses, but you won’t find a better group of people.

It’s always impressive to see how well voice actors can improvise on the spot. They have very little interaction with each other. The most exposure they’ll get with one another is hearing a voice that may be played back for reference. Otherwise, they’re stuck in a booth alone, quickly scanning a script they’ve never seen before, dishing out multiple takes for us to grab. It’s a draining process that requires a lot of attention from all parties.

After it’s all said and done, I believe people will be satisfied with the voices we chose for each character. When localizing games like those in the Tales of franchise, there’s always added pressure since the Japanese version typically comes out first.

Tales of Xillia on PS3

I’m very much aware that it can be very jarring to someone hearing the English voices when they’re used to hearing the Japanese voices. However, I think our English cast matches the original intention of their character’s persona.

For example, we went with a much deeper voice for Milla. We needed her to maintain a very powerful and authoritative demeanor, so we didn’t find it appropriate maintaining the same pitch as her Japanese voice.

Similarly, we pitched down Jude a little bit as well. He maintains the same adolescent qualities as the Japanese version, but we figured the North American audience would prefer a lower, stronger voice.

As long-winded as the recording was, it was a gratifying one, and I really owe it to all the people I worked with. Everyone has done an outstanding job, and I hope the fans enjoy it.

//Add Your Own

122 Comments

51

+ ArchAngelMai on November 5th, 2012 at 8:52 pm said:

@Ted Tsung
“However, I think our English cast matches the original intention of their character’s persona.”

“For example, we went with a much deeper voice for Milla. We needed her to maintain a very powerful and authoritative demeanor, so we didn’t find it appropriate maintaining the same pitch as her Japanese voice.”

YOU JUST CONTRADICTED YOURSELF!


52

+ Destiny89 on November 5th, 2012 at 9:35 pm said:

2 copies day 1! cant wait for this game thank you!
please bring the Vita Tales games over too and please bring Tales of Vesperia over for PS3


53

+ Pedro408sanjose on November 5th, 2012 at 9:43 pm said:

You dang kids and your Japanese audio, you guys want cheese with that whine? Be happy we are getting it in the first place.


54

+ Mister-Nep on November 5th, 2012 at 10:07 pm said:

I already own the JP version, but I want this version to have Japanese voices. The JP cast just does such a good job.


55

+ Elvick_ on November 5th, 2012 at 10:10 pm said:

@50: Um, Square Enix wouldn’t know what their fans wanted if we told them over and over and over. Oh wait, we do that already and get nothing. My bad. Companies should only look at SE on what NOT to do.


56

+ Grayfox2k8 on November 5th, 2012 at 10:20 pm said:

I understand both sides of the argument concerning audio language. The question boils down to do you prefer to spend most of the time reading subtitles while playing. Or they could just be trolling…

However games such as the Yakuza series is understandable to have Japanese audio only because the setting is in Japan. On the flip side games like Final Fantasy, or Tales of. is another story.

I have no preference, I’m just happy the localization is going smoothly.


57

+ SephirothLaw on November 5th, 2012 at 10:47 pm said:

Love the Tales series (My Wife loves them even more!) Glad to hear things are moving along for you guys (and ladies.)


58

+ Gohonq on November 5th, 2012 at 11:03 pm said:

I CAN’T WAIT! lol I hope you keep us all up to date on the progress. I believe the dubbing will be great since the past Tales of games were all good voice wise.


59

+ RurouniSaiya-jin on November 5th, 2012 at 11:06 pm said:

Thanks for giving us this update.

Sweet. If the voice recording is done, we’re much closer to the NA release for this game. Maybe it’ll arrive in March like Graces F. Really looking forward to this game. Graces F was my first Tales game and I absolutely loved it.


60

+ Souledge94 on November 5th, 2012 at 11:10 pm said:

thanks for the update. I really enjoyed tales of grace voice cast for the most part and its good to know your hard at work with this. Any chance of any of the vita tales games to come over? I would defently buy them day 1.


61

+ Tjoeb123 on November 5th, 2012 at 11:26 pm said:

I hope you guys understand, there are a few factors that go into wether we see Dual Audio or not. Like, will the development team let the voices be used in a western release? Will the English voice actors accept doing a voice for a game? Will there be enough space on the disc (if it’s going to be on Blu-Ray)? Will it be cost-effective?

There’s a game I’m playing right now. Its series doesn’t have English voices at all, ever – only Japanese. Hell, it doesn’t even take place in Japan. And that game is Record of Agarest War Zero. (I’ve played RoAW2 too, from the PS+ trial) At first I hated listening to Japanese actors but because of me playing the game (that doesn’t even give you the time….EPIC FAIL) I’ve actually gotten used to it. And I’m sure the rest of you Japanese purists can do the same with English releases.


62

+ Tjoeb123 on November 5th, 2012 at 11:26 pm said:

Now, the main point of me posting was to address another audio-related issue – the OP theme, “progress”. In some past Tales games (like Tales of Symphonia Dawn of the New World) had their opening themes replaced with an instrumental piece for the Western release, while the opening themes that also happened to have English versions (Vesperia, Graces F) were used in those releases.

What I’m asking is, will the opening theme be retained, or replaced? ‘Cause if it’s the latter, it’ll be “very jarring” to hear. Also I personally prefer the sequel’s opening theme (Song 4 U) and its arrangement for what I assume is the final boss.


63

+ macmatt777 on November 5th, 2012 at 11:28 pm said:

Absolutely stoked to hear this. If I’m not mistaken, Graces F’s VA was done in November as well. If true we may see Xillia Early on in 2013 as well. Hopefully we get a trailer to hear for ourselves what the characters sound like. Pleased with the dubbing for Graces and no doubt I will enjoy Xillia’s as well


64

+ Dmx66 on November 6th, 2012 at 12:01 am said:

duo audio please, thx for the update


65

+ ArchAngelMai on November 6th, 2012 at 12:54 am said:

@55
AMEN!


66

+ Souledge94 on November 6th, 2012 at 2:01 am said:

@55
if its asking for a ff7 remake then thank god they dont listen. I want them to keep going with FF and not remake a past entry. Iv enjoyed 13 and 13-2.


67

+ ulayera on November 6th, 2012 at 4:52 am said:

Nice!, i’m playing Tales of Graces right now, it was really hard to import (it dont sell in my country), i hope this version of Tales of Xillia to be purchased and downloaded via PSN… Regards! (Also would be nice to have Tales of the Abyss back in the PSN store =D)


68

+ Faythi on November 6th, 2012 at 4:56 am said:

Innocence R for VITA too please! Miss some tales games.


69

+ gamehead_761 on November 6th, 2012 at 5:11 am said:

When will the Dragon ball z Budokau HD Collection Coming to the ps store


70

+ gamehead_761 on November 6th, 2012 at 5:12 am said:

Budokai


71

+ Gay_Angel on November 6th, 2012 at 5:16 am said:

I need to get back on the “Tales of …..” games, I sure do miss them!


72

+ therob21 on November 6th, 2012 at 5:28 am said:

Thanks for the update on the voice actors namco. I hope to get the game soon when it is released! I am a big fan of the tales series, now and forever.


73

+ Dustinwp on November 6th, 2012 at 7:15 am said:

Is each Tales game it’s own story? Are the Tales games accessible enough to start with this title? I would like to buy this game, but I am worried I won’t understand what’s going on without playing previous Tales titles. Thanks to anyone who responds.


74

+ Bloodios on November 6th, 2012 at 7:21 am said:

@72Dustinwp
Just jump right in. It’s pretty much like the Final Fantasy series, each game has its own story and characters. Playing the previous titles, however, will help you pick out some similarity here and there, and possibly some cameo appearances. But all in all, the only real connection this game is going to have is with its upcoming sequel, Tales of Xillia 2.


75

+ Siras13 on November 6th, 2012 at 8:28 am said:

Am I the only one who doesn’t want the Japanese voice track?


76

+ Niyari67 on November 6th, 2012 at 9:21 am said:

I really hate to be that guy, but any news on Vesperia for PS3? Cryptic responses are okay with me! lol


77

+ electronicpart on November 6th, 2012 at 9:42 am said:

I’m big fun of the Tales, I love the stories that they bring with every new game and how the character grow up with the story. Most likely I’m going to buy it, ONLY IF it has the Japanese voice acting with English subtitle. BTW thank you @ChibiMrBubbles , ArchAngelMai for rising a point.

YES for Dual Audi.


78

+ TheOathsworn on November 6th, 2012 at 9:50 am said:

I personally could care less about the Japanese dubs being in the game or not, I’m just glad that the game is actually coming here for one. If they afford the funds to get Dual Audio in the game, then good for them and that will just be a bonus to me, I’ll still enjoy the game regardless of which dubbing they throw at me. If I really want the Jap dubs I’ll just crack open my JP copy of Xillia and play that instead.

I for one will be buying it on release to support the series in hopes to see the next titles in the series actually get a chance to be released worldwide.


79

+ Ryumoau on November 6th, 2012 at 10:50 am said:

@69 as far as i know, DBZ Budokai HD collection is retail disk only.

@75 no. I couldn’t care less about japanese voice tracks in games either. Not that i hate them, i just prefer dubs.


80

+ shady965X on November 6th, 2012 at 10:52 am said:

GREAT ! now we need tales of xillia 2 :D


81

+ Ryumoau on November 6th, 2012 at 10:53 am said:

I also second the notion of possibly releasing this game digitally on psn alongside the retail version. At a discounted price of course. :P


82

+ mike-yazuka on November 6th, 2012 at 10:56 am said:

Hope we can get an update on a date soon. I’m looking forward to this game so much!! Easily my most sought after game next year.


83

+ Golden_Bear92 on November 6th, 2012 at 11:19 am said:

I didn’t know that the voice recording had even started! I could have auditioned! There really needs to be an easier way for me to find out exactly when voice auditioning for stuff like this is happening. I’m trying to break into voice acting for video games and anime.


84

+ RidleysBox on November 6th, 2012 at 12:14 pm said:

I for one wish all games from Japan to have either dual voices, or Japanese only, for three reasons.

1) I like to make fun of bad translations comparing the original dialogue to the Japanese audio (which is why I will never buy another game from xseed, awful translations).

2) Japanese seiyu’s have fan-bases, a lot of people follow their works and buy things based on what they are in.

3) All of the arts should be enjoyed in the format they were originally created in.

In the end though, I imported this title as well as graces and vespiria a while back, so I don’t really care anymore.


85

+ Nates4Christ on November 6th, 2012 at 12:27 pm said:

I bought Tales of Graces within the first week. I buy all the US release Gundam games. Bandai please bring more gundam games over! We need Gundam Extreme Vs. Also the upcoming Macross game.


86

+ Darkpen on November 6th, 2012 at 1:34 pm said:

I like hearing that you lowered the pitch for both characters. I completely agree on Milla’s pitch needing to be lower to draw on her character of being authoritative. Looking forward to the dub!


87

+ Chocolatevivi on November 6th, 2012 at 2:16 pm said:

Please leave in Dual audio. I always find I enjoy an rpg better if I can set the voice to Japanese and keep the subtitles. Especially in this case, because Sawashiro Miyuki is my all time favorite Seiyu. I understand that you are proud of your work and effort in dubbing the game, but many of us like to hear it exactly as it was intended. And this game has an all-star seiyu cast. Many other rpgs leave in both audio tracts, but unfortunately many tales games do not. PLEASE RECONSIDER!


88

+ Chocolatevivi on November 6th, 2012 at 2:34 pm said:

Actually being even more honest, for the last 2 tales games i bought ( tales of graces and tales of abyss for 3ds) I have turned off the voices completely and played them like and old school rpg. I actually really enjoyed it that way. It is not that the english voices are horrible or unbearable (well some of them are unbearable), but it is more of that japanese does not translate perfectly into english and trying to do so sometimes completely ruins moments or entire characters (usually the Moe ones trying to be cute). So once again, I emphasize. PLEASE LEAVE IN DUAL AUDIO.


89

+ Kagami2k on November 6th, 2012 at 2:40 pm said:

I beat and loved Tales of Graces f. I cant wait for the game and more updates to come.
Oh and a collectors edition of the game with a high quality figurine would be awesome!


90

+ clefoink on November 6th, 2012 at 3:14 pm said:

hmm, i think it would be detrimental for Namco or Bamco to add the japanese voice in terms of sales, adding the japanese voices would make the game a bit more expensive(considering that japanese voice actors are considered Gods in Japan, i’m pretty sure Namco Jp wouldn’t just give their voice files for free), and it would lose it’s appeal to non fans of the franchise or to the people who are trying to get into the fanbase, although i have to admit, Namco fans are a bit consistent in wanting specific stuff….remember tekken tag 2….Harada(from tekken) actually had to step in and told the consumers to stop asking for specific VAs (http://shoryuken.com/2012/06/25/katsuhiro-harada-responds-to-complaints-about-non-returning-voice-actors/), so yeah, in before we get another notice from those people, let’s just be happy with what’s given to us


91

+ TrueProphecy on November 6th, 2012 at 3:19 pm said:

So, is it fully voice acted or half-cocked like other Western Tales releases?

I understand why they only go halfway, but the experience is so much more immersive when they go all out.


92

+ ZepherX on November 6th, 2012 at 4:24 pm said:

I would love a tales of xilla collectors edition because I would get 2 of them. Also If possible if you can like have your official site or get amazon, gamestop or whatever to get them to have it on their preorder list. I CANT WAIT….


93

+ Yunglex313 on November 6th, 2012 at 5:24 pm said:

People do realize that just because all the audio is recorded doesn’t mean the localization is close to being done. There still has to be changes to the User Interface and other art and programming details. We still have maybe 4 more months before the game goes gold.


94

+ keiichimorisato9 on November 6th, 2012 at 5:27 pm said:

this is for all those people who gripe about english voice acting in games brought to AMERICA, STF! learn japanese and import the game. that is what i would do if i cared so deeply about that. these days english voice acting has gotten a lot better over the years. people complain about voice actors being so whinny well THEY ARE LIKE THAT IN JAPANESE and in my opinion the japanese whinny teen is a lot worse than the english version.


95

+ Ryumoau on November 6th, 2012 at 6:43 pm said:

@84 god, you sound like such an elitist snob. Why even comment if you have no interest in supporting companies putting effort in localizing and making games more accessible by dubbing the language in the language of the target market.

Whiny Weaboos like you are the reason i feel ashamed to still have interest in jrpgs.


96

+ dantevilad on November 6th, 2012 at 7:14 pm said:

dear, i would be very pleased to have this ASAP. 1 year’s waiting kills time, i am sure tales have large number of fans outside the J. so just press the release date and we will release our fury:)


97

+ Sparkz92 on November 6th, 2012 at 9:31 pm said:

So it’s coming early 2013 then ^_^


98

+ Onime86 on November 7th, 2012 at 12:19 am said:

Please no more English dubs, or at least leave the original Japanese dub in as an option, the English dialogue really detracts from most JRPGs.


99

+ Ryumoau on November 7th, 2012 at 6:11 am said:

@97 thats your problem. If you need to hear japanese that badly, stop being lazy and learn the language so you can just import it and stop being so condescending to english localization efforts.


100

+ Kicorachi on November 7th, 2012 at 9:00 am said:

Yes. This is good. Can’t wait to hear how they sound. Doing a great job with keeping the hype. I knew you’d work harder for Xillia but this is still something else. Day 1 purchase.

I can’t wait to hear how you are handling the opening theme.


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