Skip to main content

Dear actors: please stop breaking your NDAs

There are a few ways to find out about games that publishers haven't yet officially revealed. First, you can try stalking the online resumes of actors/composers/developers/etc in hopes that they've listed their roles for unannounced projects. Alternatively, you can browse the hashtag "#showbiz" on Twitter on a daily basis in case actor-comedian Jay Mohr Tweets things like: "About to do my voice over work for new Saints Row video game. #showbiz". Hey, worked for us!

So. There's definitely some kind of new Saints Row project on the horizon--whether it'll take the form of DLC for Saints Row 4, or a standalone fifth entry in the open-world franchise, we're not sure. But either way, is it really much of a surprise that a game that sold more than one million units in its first week is, at the very least, getting some new DLC content, if not an entire sequel? Hardly.

I mean, was it that big of a shock when composer Tony Williams listed a new God of War game on his resume back in 2012? There was a sort of general assumption ever since the release of God of War III--which sold more than 1.1 million copies two weeks after its release--that a new one would inevitably come around someday. After all, God of War had become a mega franchise (at least, up until Ascension's lackluster sales, which came in at about half that of its predecessor).

Did anyone embark on a cross-country cartwheeling expedition out of sheer disbelief when Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag prematurely showed up on the resumes of three Ubisoft developers? Er, not that I'm aware of--but again: we're talking about an annualized series that sells millions of copies every single year. Or how about when Kevin Conroy confirmed that he was voicing Bats in an upcoming Arkham (non-Origins) game? Anyone surprised about that? Anyone? Probably not.

BUT! Even if we know these games are likely to happen someday, it's a bit of a letdown when their announcements come about by accident instead of with an awesome trailer, ya know? It's the difference between walking into a surprise party completely unaware and being tipped off by a buddy that, hey, we're throwing you a surprise party tonight at 7 p.m. Don't eat a big lunch. Also, I didn't get you a present. Sorry.

And I'd wager these kinds of reveals are also a bummer for publishers and developers. I don't know what kind of time or money goes into crafting an awesome reveal trailer, but I can imagine it's extremely disappointing to work on a project for a year and half in secret, waiting for the perfect moment to provide the world a glimpse at your blood, sweat, and tears, only to have some dude you contracted to make the sound effects post what he'd been doing on his Twitter account. Which, by the way, has 200,000 followers.

So please, actors/composers/etc--for the sake of everyone who loves this wonderful medium of entertainment, leave the reveals to those who've worked so hard on making the games we all enjoy so, so much.

Ryan was once the Executive Editor of GamesRadar, before moving into the world of games development. He worked as a Brand Manager at EA, and then at Bethesda Softworks, before moving to 2K. He briefly went back to EA and is now the Director of Global Marketing Strategy at 2K.