In July of last year, TGL hosted a very special live panel interview at Dublin’s Arcade Con 2012 with our good friend - veteran voice actor Quinton Flynn.
We’re huge fans of Quinton and his work, so it was a real honour for us to finally meet the man, invite him to Ireland and hear all about his work and all of the great characters he has voiced over the years.
We’ve done and continue to do quite a bit of work with voice actors here on TGL. We’re happy to say that we’ve probably interviewed some of the biggest names voicing videogame characters in the business today. We’ve talked Foxdie with Solid Snake’s David Hayter, tackled the Reaper invasion with Commander Shepard’s Mark Meer, talked babes and bubblegum with Duke Nukem’s Jon St. John, discovered lost treasures with Nathan Drake’s Nolan North, slayed Demons with Dante’s Reuben Langdon, questioned the validity of science with GlaDOS’ Ellen McLain and crushed the Covenant with Master Chief’s Steve Downes.
As for Quinton, we’ve been friends with him for a couple of years now. Once the Arcade Con opportunity came up to potentially collaborate with a voice actor for the purposes of a live panel interview, we knew we wanted Quinton, not least because of his involvement in the Metal Gear Solid franchise. Metal Gear Solid’s “Raiden” has been one of Quinton’s most celebrated characters and with a Raiden only Metal Gear game in Rising: Revengeance due sometime in the near future, we thought that now was as good a time as ever to talk Raiden and Metal Gear.
So, once we secured Quinton, we talked about how we would conduct the interview. Panels and Q&A’s are fun, but we wanted to do something different, something unique and something that people would remember.
Then last spring, David Hayter, voice of Metal Gear’s Solid Snake, presented the Canadian Videogame Awards.
During the show, David was interrupted on stage by any number of original Metal Gear CODEC calls from Solid Snake, Colonel Roy Campbell and Dr. Naomi Hunter. We loved what David did with the Snake CODEC calls and Paul Eiding and Jenifer Hale as Campbell and Naomi respectively, really added to the sense of occasion. We wanted to do the very same thing, only this time, do it during the panel discussion with Quinton. In addition to this, we wouldn’t actually tell Quinton what was happening beforehand.
So – where do you start with a plan that will almost certainly fail? First thing we needed was a cast and at least two Metal Gear characters who might buy into the idea of what we wanted to do. You have to remember, we would have to write a script for them, ask them to record it for us in their free time and send it back to us in a format that we could then dissect and edit. It would require a bit of work. So, we did what we always do when we want a voice actor for an interview, we started sending mails, contacting representatives and sending private messages and tweets.
We wanted Colonel Roy Campbell and we wanted Solid Snake. We had spoken and interviewed Paul Eiding (voice of Campbell) and David Hayter (voice of Solid Snake) the year previous. We retained their contact information and thought “to hell with it – all they can do is say no to the idea”. Thankfully, they both said yes. They were both really into the idea of recording new and original voice over for Quinton’s panel and TGL at Arcade Con.
We wanted to start the panel with a CODEC from Campbell. He would debrief us on what was the come in terms of the interview. Paul was ever so professional and enthusiastic with the idea. He did an incredible job with the text we sent him. But for us, the real star of the show were his extra short almost one-liner CODEC calls. Towards the end of Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, Campbell constantly interrupts the player with seemingly random CODEC calls and information. Campbell rambles on about everything from scissors to glowing objects in the sky. We thought if Paul could do the very same and link it to Ireland in some way, it would make for a really funny way of interrupting the panel. As it turned out, Paul recorded three extra short CODEC quips. At three different times during the panel, Campbell interrupted us with a new random CODEC “moments”. We’ve put all three together for you below to see for yourself. I’m sure you can agree, Paul did an incredible job. The man is a true gentleman and a incredibly funny.
When it came to Snake and David Hayter, we wanted to save that CODEC until the very end. We wanted to surprise the audience with Snake. At this point they would have been so used to seeing Campbell interrupt, that we felt that the presence of Snake would catch them even more off guard.
The idea with the Snake chat was simple. Snake wants to be at Arcade Con but has instead been dispatched on another mission. Snake is jealous of Raiden and his presence in Dublin. The script basically wrote itself. Waiting for David to email his recording back to us was nerve-wrecking. We thought he was going to hate what we had written. As it turned out, he really loved it. The man is a true legend and such a nice guy to work with. Here’s what the final Solid Snake CODEC sounded like.
We would like to say a huge thank you to Paul Eiding, David Hayter and Quinton Flynn for their patience and for taking the time out of their crazy busy schedules to make time for TGL and our little CODEC idea. We’re really pleased with the results. We hope you enjoy them too. Now, we’re off to go get some of those “Guinness Rations” we’ve heard so much about.