Designing a Narrator system

One of the common complaints is that the game is boring for regular people with no knowledge of biochemistry or cellular biology.

Well, a way to make it more exciting would be to include a narrator to speak (of course optionally but enabled by default), perhaps in a David Attenborough-like voice, marking much of the game’s milestones. Each phrase would be repeated only once.

Some examples:
Upon changing membrane type → “The protection of the cell, of course, relied on the membrane. Membranes determined a lot of a cell’s relationship with its environment - including their potential preys and predators.”
Upon evolving nucleus → “As cells grew larger and more complex, the evolution of a nucleus to regulate protein production and expression became the basis for even more advanced celluler biology.”
Upon first photosynthetic protein/organelle: “Photosyntesis was perhaps the most important development in reaching autotrophy - the capability of organisms to feed themselves.”
Upon first engulfing another cell or first being engulfed by another cell: “Predation happened early in evolution. The capacity of unicellular organisms to engulf and digest one another resulted in an alteration of intercellular patterns of behaviour.”

Etc. etc. - This could be done via a narrator human voice recording, or with a speech synthesizer. I reckon that a good MP3 compression could make these not too heavy, only 50 kb or so per 10 second clip (I have had 3-minute songs sounding good at 300 kb in the past). But even if ten times this, it will surely not go over 10 extra MB with a select set of narrations.

The experience would be enhanced both narratively, ludically, but also educationally - which I believe, is one of the goals of the game.

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This is a weirdly good idea

This is kind of like what happens in rimworld right?

not exactly, rimworld has events generated by a storyteller, following a specific algorithm for different storytellers, but its not really like a narration of whats going on.

The game has been translated into more than 30 languages, which could really bulk up the data size. Aside from that, narration would be great. It would always be possible to do as a mod, too.

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Considering that there’s only a couple of languages being close to done, I cannot imagine translated versions of the game to have custom voice lines.

What about this: Only the english version gets a narrator because its the most spoken language. Other languages have narration off by default, but they can use a text to speech for their languages. Or they still have english narration but with subtitles.


I think I remembered there being a old civ 4 mod with a lot of custom tech stuff and so a lot of the voice lines were either taken from like a tv show or something or it would be a guy with a $13 microphone whispering the line and so you can really hear the quality jumping all over the place, especially since it be a different guy saying it each time.

That’s a great idea! Translations don’t have to be audio-based, even if they’re preferred. Lots of things are translated in subtitles only. No reason it can’t apply to a game too. I sometimes intentionally play games in dubs I can’t understand for learning reasons or because I like the way the dub sounds better (sometimes different dubs in different games have different quality levels) so this would work just fine.

Or better - make a alien speake voice for the audio and subtitles in the given translate.

Ill become a voice actor just for this just shoot me an email.

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With the advances on AI this could be now narrated automatically. Check out Udio, it can sing lyrics in several languages (I tried Spanish, Latin, English, Portuguese and Russian). The game would just need an embedded system or an API to call an internet service, but everything after that can be read from text.

Yet anyways the idea of personal narrators is still doable, with MP3 considering 10 seconds clip per event and 50 events it can be like 10 MB per optional language. And even if the voice is only English you can still read the subtitles in your language.

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