Sam Witwer has discussed the four-year process that went into bringing Days Gone's Deacon to life.
Sam Witwer, the voice of Days Gone’s protagonist Deacon St. John, has shared in an interview that he was “very moody on almost the first nine months of working on that game because I didn’t quite understand what was going on.”
Bend Studio tweaked their protagonist Deacon after the first public reactions were negative, and actor Sam Witwer has discussed the behind the scenes process.
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Days Gone lead actor was “very moody” playing Deacon
Witwer said that he “got very moody on almost the first nine months of working on that game because I didn’t quite understand what was going on.” Witwer further explained that Bend Studio shot different versions of the same scene repeatedly in an effort to discover the right tone and personality for the character.
After the first nine months, Witwer started to enjoy the job thanks to understanding his character more. Apparently, Deacon was another Sony protagonist who made quips and jokes before Witwer and Bend Studio were able to find a way to fit “very realistic, grim, gallows humor in this world.”
Days Gone’s director, John Garvin, encouraged Witwer and the rest of the cast to improvise their scenes so interesting moments could occur organically. Witwer acknowledged that it was an unusual process that was difficult to adjust to, but one that eventually provided him with a thrilling experience: “Once I caught on to how they were working, I had so much fun. It was like, nine months of real discomfort and then like three years of just incredible fun.”
While a lot of other games are downgraded as time goes on, Witwer said that Days Gone got significantly bigger as Bend Studio added more side quests and scenes to help players have a greater emotional connection to Deacon.
Days Gone launches for the PlayStation 4 only on April 26.