Details From BioShock Infinite’s Recording Sessions
BioShock Infinite tells an emotionally-charged story, but to accomplish this Irrational Games had to spend a lot of time in the recording booth. During a panel at PAX 2011, Irrational Game’s Ken Levine, and voice actors Troy Baker and Courtnee Draper talked about this experience.
Here are a few interesting tidbits that came up during the panel:
- Ken Levine didn’t meet any of the actors from the first BioShock, he only ever talked to them over the phone before recording sessions, but for Infinite he was extremely hands on, often getting in the recording booth to help out the actors.
- The actress who plays Elizabeth – Courtnee Draper – is going to law school, and was actually about to quit acting when she got offered the part for BioShock Infinite. She actually hadn’t heard of BioShock before her audition.
- The Uncharted games really inspired Ken Levine while working on BioShock Infinite.
- Few of the dramatic sequences in BioShock Infinite are not truly scripted. BioShock Infinite has a system that watches for cool opportunities to introduce dialogue sequences, so the game’s story will evolve differently for every player.
- Ken Levine wanted every line of dialogue to sound perfect, so a lot of time was spent rerecording lines. Three lines, in particular, proved to be so challenging that it took the team over an hour to record what they wanted.
- At least one scene in the game was not originally planned for the game, but was pieced together using ad libs and extra lines from other recording sessions.
- During one particularly difficult recording session, actress Courtnee Draper was having trouble working up the emotions necessary to deliver her lines, so Draper encouraged the actor who plays Booker DeWitt (Troy Baker) to start berating her until she was in tears. Finally she was able to deliver her lines perfectly.