When it was initially revealed that Peter Dinklage was the voice of Ghost in Destiny, fans were enthusiastic. After all, Dinklage's popularity was at an all-time high thanks to his award-winning work as Tyrion Lannister on Game of Thrones, so it was assumed that he would succeed in his role as a voice actor for Destiny as well.
Unfortunately, Peter Dinklage's performance in Destiny has turned out to be one of the many criticisms lobbed at the game, alongside its heavy grinding and weak storytelling. Now, nearly a year removed from the launch of the game, Bungie has announced plans to completely replace Peter Dinklage with Nolan North as the voice of Ghost.
The decision to replace Peter Dinklage, while understandable, came as quite a shock to fans. But, in an effort to clear the air, Bungie has now elaborated on the thought process behind making such a drastic change to the game.
As explained by Jesse Van Dijk, the lead concept artist for Destiny, the decision to completely replace Peter Dinklage was about maintaining consistency in the Destiny universe:
"When we started looking at voice actors, and we decided to work with Nolan North, the consistency of the entire universe is very important to us, so we decided to give the full treatment to all of our previous content too."
By and large, this will likely be seen as a step in the right direction for fans of the game. Nolan North has considerably more experience than Dinklage as a voice actor in video games, and brings along an understanding of what it takes to deliver a solid voice performance.
As it stands, the dialogue for Ghost is pretty dry and one note, and many times his interactions boil down to "Defend me while I open this door." If Bungie produces a quality script (perhaps they could use some of the comedic lines David Cross wrote), then North should be able to make Ghost less of an annoyance in Destiny moving forward, but it will definitely require a joint effort.
Completely replacing a voice actor after a game launches is virtually unheard of in the industry, but Bungie's reasoning makes sense. It would be odd for players to go from having a Ghost that sounded like Peter Dinklage in the old content, to suddenly having a Ghost that sounded like Nolan North in The Taken King expansion.
It makes even more sense when one considers that Destiny is planned as a 10 year project. It's best to make changes now then to let them sit as constant complaints for the life of the franchise.
The Taken King itself is actually changing much more than just the voice actor for Ghost, though; it's also completely revamping the leveling system, which should completely change the way players experience the game. With these constant changes, it's tough to say what Destiny will look like 10 years from now.
Are you going to miss Peter Dinklage as the voice of Ghost in Destiny? Are you excited to see if Nolan North's performance will add more personality to your robotic companion?
Destiny is currently available for PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One. The Taken King expansion for the game is set to launch in a little over a month, on September 15th.