Dishonored’s Corvo wasn’t always intended to be the silent protagonist


By on November 3, 2012 at 2:08 pm

In our massive review of Dishonored, we likened the game very strongly to Half-Life 2, and not least of all because you’re a completely mute protagonist who takes orders from everyone. It turns out that this wasn’t always the plan: speaking to Official Playstation Magazine, creators Raphael Colantonio and Harvey Smith revealed that Corvo was originally intended to have a voice.

“(Making him mute) was a deliberate choice,” said Raphael (or possibly Harvey). “If we portrayed Corvo angry and seeking revenge, it might offend the nonlethal player who is seeking a stable outcome for the City of Dunwall, and vice versa”.

“We added some text input options for Corvo around alpha but never really went further. To this day, we wonder what the other version would have felt like in the game”.

The interview also revealed that the original pitch for Dishonored, in its shortest possible form, was “ninjas”.

Source: OPM

8 comments (Leave your own)

See, they likened him to Gordon Freeman before the game was released. After playing the game for a few minutes I was given dialogue options. Sure, the dialogue wasn’t voiced, but it’s dialogue none the less.

I think their whole “silent protagonist” claim is null and void.
Unless of course they want to be technical little bitches and claim silent as in sound, meaning not voiced.

I don’t remember Gordon Freeman getting a single dialogue choice in any Half Life game??


4th Dlc pack confirmed, Corvo voice pack $4.99 ($8.99 AUD)



and thats what makes him a shitty character (imo) I’v enever been a fan of silent protagonists, it’s always just felt odd when NPC’s speak to you and automatically know what your character said.


At least Half-Life 2 made reference to Gordon being a silent protagonist.

“Man of few words, aren’t you?”



and thats what makes him a shitty character (imo) I’v enever been a fan of silent protagonists, it’s always just felt odd when NPC’s speak to you and automatically know what your character said.

THIS! I loathe silent protagonists unless you’re ultimately not that important like in CoD or sometimes in games like Skyrim when you have a crazy level of freedom in character creation. People claim they feel more into the game when the player is silent but it always takes me out of it completely especially in Half Life when people keep showering me in god-like praise where i’m sitting here going ‘but I didn’t do anything…’




I thoroughly enjoyed the game, great mechanics and great world. But it really didn’t achieve what it could have with some strong characters (particularly the protagonist). Fairly weak excuse for a silent Corvo – Garrett (the Thief games, if you don’t know) is a great character with well written dialogue, and somehow they managed to write all his lines without slipping in “I SHALL KILL EVERYONE IN THE NEXT LEVEL” and removing player choice.

It really is quite jarring – it’s very difficult to get a sense of motive from a character who has no…. umm… character.


I’m pretty much in agreeance.
I’ll take a voiced character over a silent character any day. Having a completely silent character does not make for immersion.


The Mass Effect series fixed this “out-of-character” nonsense. Lame excuse for covering a budget constraint T_T

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