– The Finals is an open beta first-person shooter game by Embark Studios
– The game features teams of three fighting to secure piles of cash in a destructible game show arena
– It has a focus on explosive firefights and varied gadgets, blending elements from Battlefield and Overwatch
– The game uses AI-generated text-to-speech voices for in-universe announcers and team voice lines
– The dialogue with AI voices feels awkward and stilted compared to the visuals and gunplay
– AI is used to cut down the time to implement new lines, but it has received criticism from developers and FPS fans
– Critics argue that using AI voice overs is bad and takes away work from real voice actors
– There are recommendations for other multiplayer games that do not use AI voice acting.
We were huge fans of the hectic action of Embark Studios’ latest first-person shooter (FPS) The Finals. Now in open beta on PC, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S, the game pits teams of three in a frantic scramble as they fight to secure piles of cash in a destructible game show arena.
With a big focus on explosive firefights and varied gadgets, The Finals feels like just the right blend of everything we love from the Battlefield series and Overwatch. We were less enamored, however, with the apparent use of AI generated text-to-speech voices in place of conventional voice acting.
Seemingly implemented for the game’s in-universe announcers and the majority of team voice lines, it lends a lot of the dialogue an awkward, stilted quality that feels oddly cheap next to the beautiful visuals and highly-polished gunplay.
While the use of text-to-speak dialogue is not too uncommon in video game development, where it is primarily used as a placeholder when lines are subject to frequent changes, voice actor Gianna Matragrano highlighted a worrying excerpt from the game’s official “Meet the Makers” podcast on Twitter.
In response to a question about the game’s voice acting, the developers appear to confirm that AI will be used in the finished product and describe it as an “extremely powerful” tool that helps cut down the time to implement new lines to “a matter of hours instead of months.”
While the prospect of being able to ship updates quicker may seem tantalising, both developers and FPS fans have taken to social media to express their disappointment at the revelation. “Shipping content with AI [voice overs] is bad, flat out,” argues Sam Winkler the Narrative Director at Gearbox Entertainment.
There has been a similar reaction over on Reddit. “These just sound like two robots,” posted dismayed user R3VV1ND,”it’s actually a little annoying to me now.” “Taking away work from real voice actors,” adds Shibastion, “[it] shouldn’t be AI.”
AI Eclipse TLDR:
Embark Studios’ latest first-person shooter, The Finals, has received praise for its action-packed gameplay and diverse gadgets. However, some players have expressed disappointment with the use of AI-generated text-to-speech voices instead of conventional voice acting. The AI voices are used for in-game announcers and team voice lines, giving the dialogue an awkward and stilted quality. While the use of text-to-speech dialogue is common as a placeholder during game development, developers confirmed in a podcast that AI will be used in the final version to expedite the implementation of new lines. This revelation has sparked criticism from both developers and fans, with concerns raised about the impact on real voice actors. Despite this setback, players seeking multiplayer games without AI voice acting can refer to lists of the best FPS games and best co-op games for alternatives.