No one is suggesting a future iteration of Half-Life's protagonist will suddenly start talking, like Chief Bromden savoring Juicy Fruit , but Matt Smith, writing at Thunderbolt Games, has an eloquent defense of Gordon Freeman's muteness, why it works so well in this series, and why Freeman is such a beloved character despite saying nary a word.
[B]y keeping Freeman quiet, Valve also creates one of the most personal first-person games in existence. Rarely does the player ever find their control lost, and when they do, it is because Freeman also is physically restrained. As a result, the player becomes Freeman; everything that he does occurs because of the player.By keeping Freeman silent, Valve's designers take a fundamentally linear experience and allow the player to impose his or her will or personality on the character through which they play, writes Smith. I've talked about how I frequently role-play a choice or a battle in an action/shooter genre, restarting if it felt I won cheaply or out of character. Half-Life definitely indulges this. While it makes it a winner for me, what makes it a winner for you? Or would you like to hear this iconic game hero speak up and say something, someday? Keep Freeman Quiet [Thunderbolt Games]