Hello, Speakup. It's been a while, but something has been bothering me since the release of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance.
I've lived in Japan for a few years now, but Rising is officially the first Metal Gear game that I have actually played in Japanese. Since Metal Gear Solid, I've played all of the games (Except Peace Walker) in English and have always disliked Snake's and Raiden's voice actors. All to often, Raiden's voice is criticized in English reviews as being too "bitchy" or too "whiny", and I have always felt the same way. It doesn't suit the character at all, and Quinton Flynn should either change the voice completely or just give up voicing Raiden.
I know a lot of people consider David Hayter as a good voice for Snake, but he just sounds unnatural. The voice for Solid Snake actually sounds like a small guy making his tough man voice, which doesn't suit Solid Snake's over-the-top and strong character. Hayter, especially in Metal Gear Solid 4, was a huge disappointment, in my opinion.
However, as I mentioned before, I have been playing Metal Gear Rising in Japanese, and you know what? Raiden's Japanese voice (Horiuchi Kenyu) is absolutely perfect for the character. Mysterious, strong, and most importantly, not "bitchy" or "whiny". He actually sounds like a very confident and powerful hero, which is pretty much the opposite of Quinton Flynn's Raiden.
Because of this, I decided to check out some Metal Gear Solid 3 and 4 videos in Japanese to hear Solid Snake's voice, and exactly the same situation! Solid Snake sounds like an absolute badass in Japanese, as opposed to the soft-spoken David Hayter. Akio Ootsuka is absolutely fantastic as Solid Snake, and it is actually the voice I naturally expected him to be using.
I honestly don't know why we continually praise mediocre voice acting when clearly we can get much, much better people to voice not only a character in a game but the main character of a huge game series. After playing Rising in Japanese and watching those MGS3&4 videos, I will never play an English version again. It's just absolutely inferior thanks to the voice acting of the main characters.
Has anyone else experienced this? Or am I the only one that thinks David Hayter is beyond overrated?