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If you've been doubting just how much EA cares about making sure the upcoming Command & Conquer Remastered, aka Command and Conquer: Tiberian Dawn, stays true to the 1995 RTS classic, I've got some good news for you. Developer Petroglyph has gone the extra mile and opted to re-hire Kia Huntzinger, the voice behind the original game's announcer.
The AI announcer known as Electronic Video Agent - or EVA - was an integral part of the original game. Many of Huntzinger's iconic lines, such as "silo lost" and "nuclear warhead approaching", are no doubt burned into the memory of every gamer who spent countless hours with the original Command & Conquer.
The original audio tapes were unfortunately lost some years ago, so Petroglyph opted to do "the next best thing" and invite Huntzinger to return to the fold and re-record her lines. "Fortunately for us, she still sounds very close to the way she did years ago," audio director Frank Klepacki wrote in an update on the C&C blog. That's the kind of commitment to authenticity that you love to see.
"As with many of you in the community, Kia's voice has been embedded in my subconscious after playing Tiberian Dawn (the original C&C's working title) over the past 24 years," the blog post continued. "Kia has brought an authenticity to the project which just couldn't be achieved in any other way."
"Kia wanted to do this for the fans and approached the recording full of passion and eagerness. We're forever thankful to Kia for contributing to this remaster journey, and hope everyone in the C&C community will appreciate her performance."
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You can check out a nice little comparison video of the new and old dialogue below. She really hasn't lost the magic, that's for sure. This is doubly impressive, when you consider she recorded her lines for the original Command & Conquer 25 years ago.
Despite having become such a vital part of Command & Conquer, Huntzinger was never actually a voice actor. According to an old interview, she was an employee at original studio Westwood who was simply enlisted to record some placeholder lines. The results, which were recorded in a padded cupboard, were so good that Westwood opted to use her in the final game. They made the right call.
Petroglyph ended its blog post by briefly touching on how the team plans to handle the announcer audio for Red Alert, which is also being remastered. The 1996 game used the voice of Martin Alper, who was President of Virgin Interactive Entertainment at the time. Alper sadly passed away recently, and EA Producer Jim Vessella said the team simply didn't feel comfortable replacing him with another actor.
To maintain Alper's legacy then, EA has confirmed that the developer will attempt to clean up his original recordings as best they can.
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