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You may never have consciously thought about it, but voice acting is incredibly important in any RTS game – you’ll click on a unit type, hear the alert for being attacked, and get confirmation of movement orders dozens of times in just a single match. From Red Alert 3’s “Kirov reporting” to StarCraft’s “Carrier has arrived,” some of these little voice lines have become iconic symbols of their series.

The developers of the upcoming Homeworld 3 are well aware of their importance and have an idea to provide the variety of voices that players will hear when playing the game – they’re not just giving every ship two different voices, there will be different kinds of voice line layers: the informational layer and flavor layer.

The example given is of a fighter docking with a carrier:

Interceptor Pilot: “DC this is flight lead looking to put down, echo back.”

Carrier Docking Control: “This is Khar-Kushan DC approach vector and bay sent, you are one in line.”

Interceptor Pilot: “Copy that DC, we’re inbound.”

The first sentence of the pilot is given out on the informational layer, so you’ll hear it regardless of the position of that fighter and that carrier – it’s your regular movement confirmation order. You’ll only hear the full exchange with all three sentences when you're currently near the two ships – a neat little trick to enhance the immersiveness. Note that the units are talking to each other, not to you as the player or commander.

For the developers, this is an attempt to “humanize the fleet” and make the world feel a lot richer. It’s certainly an interesting twist on the traditional voice line work in RTS games and is going to be great for players who spend a good deal of time just admiring their fleets.

You can read more on the Homeworld 3 developers’ blog. The space RTS is set to be released in February 2024 after it was delayed for a second time.