If you are an avid gamer and haven’t been living under a rock for the last 10 years, you should be quite familiar with the name Troy Baker, one of gaming’s most recognizable voices. He has been in over 100 games to date. Though all of his roles have something special about them, there’s always going to be those that stand out as the best.
Read on to find out about Troy Baker’s best voice acting roles in video games.
Revolver Ocelot (Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain)
Revolver Ocelot has been as much of a staple to the Metal Gear Solid series as Snake himself. Ocelot is a master of interrogation and gun fighting (particularly with revolvers). Troy Baker lends his voice to this iconic character in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.
Although Ocelot had appeared throughout the previous games as an antagonist, The Phantom Pain was the first numbered game in the series in which he was not blatantly antagonistic.
Ocelot is a man who is very committed to the cause, and he would do anything to help the Big Boss achieve success in his missions. His primary role in the game is to provide information on the targets and the world around the protagonist.
There was some criticism that there wasn’t enough of Ocelot in the game to differentiate the character from some of Baker’s early roles, but I personally think he did a really great job interjecting a different persona into a character that has been in nearly every Metal Gear game in the series, each time supporting a different kind of purpose.
Male Voice 1 (Saints Row: The Third)
The Saints Row series started out as games in which the protagonist didn’t really say a word, but in later releases, Volition decided to nix the mute protagonist and hire some actors to voice the various options from which you could choose your customizable character. Starting with Saints Row: The Third, Troy Baker portrays the Male Voice 1 option.
Not to disparage any of the other voice talents, but to me, Baker embodies the leader of the 3rd Street Saints so well that it’s hard to play without his voice. He merges humor with seriousness throughout the game, whether it’s rage over losing a former member of the gang or silliness during a sing-a-long to the classic Sublime song “What I Got” between him and Pierce Washington (Arif S. Kinchen).
Baker’s performance shines through this character in many different ways, and he is able to catch your attention as a charismatic yet sometimes over-the-top, silly gangster.
Talion (Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor; Shadow of War)
Stepping into the world of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of The Rings is no easy feat, especially when you play a character with no known past in the book or movie canon. Troy Baker does just this in 2014’s Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, in which he portrays Talion, a captain of Gondor.
His performance as Talion is more nuanced than some of his former roles. Here he is a humble and soft-spoken ranger who has lost his family to Sauron’s forces. He merges with former elf-lord spirit Celebrimbor to uncover the spirits of a hidden past and avenge the death of his family.
His standout moments as Talion are shown through cut-scenes that depict the story of a man who has lost everything and is stricken with grief and the need for revenge, portraying a character that deserves its place among the canon of The Lord of the Rings. Baker returned as Talion in 2017’s sequel, Shadow of War, where he amasses armies with the plan of attacking and defeating Sauron.
Bruce Wayne (Batman: The Telltale Series)
Many have portrayed Bruce Wayne/Batman over the years, but the most recognizable voice for the character in any and all animation or game version of the Dark Knight’s story is Kevin Conroy, who had been voicing the Bat for over 20 years. Troy Baker takes up the role for the second time in Batman: The Telltale Series (the first being his portrayal of the Bat in LEGO Batman: The Videogame). In Telltale Game’s original look into Batman’s story, through choice-driven gameplay and cut-scenes, you can play the story the way you want.
Baker’s performance as Bruce Wayne gives you a look at the character behind the mask and shows how much Bruce differs from his often used playboy persona. He is a man that truly cares about justice and doing the right things. This is a man you can relate to and feel sorry for, perhaps best exemplified by the moment in Season One in which he loses his temper after finding out about his father's past, or maybe during the heart-stopping confrontation he has with former friend Harvey Dent.
Baker gives his all in this performance, which stands among the best portrayals of Batman in any medium.
Delsin Rowe (InFAMOUS: Second Son)
Continuing his trend of portraying a new fish in an old pond, Troy Baker lends his voice to InFAMOUS: Second Son’s protagonist, Delsin Rowe.
Delsin is a delinquent who discovers he is a Conduit after interacting with a captive of the Department of Unified Protection. This activates Delsin’s powers and starts his adventure in the game.
Delsin deeply enjoys becoming a super-powered human and wishes to do the right things, becoming a hero to those who have no voice and fighting against the government’s hatred of the Conduits. He can be very childish and immature, but he is fiercely loyal to his tribe, including to his brother, Reggie Rowe.
Troy’s performance in this role as a childish, immature delinquent is very well done. He doesn’t overdo it or exaggerate Delsin’s lines, and that’s what makes you truly relate to this character and his struggle to fight against injustice and do right by his tribe.
His relationship with his brother is one of the most important aspects of the game, and Baker delivers his lines so well that you’d truly believe he and Travis Willingham (Reggie Rowe) were actually bickering brothers in real life.
Gul'dan (World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor; Legion)
Taking over the role from Paul Eiding, who voiced him in the original Warcraft PC games, Troy Baker brings new life to dark character and antagonist Gul'dan.
Starting in Warlords of Draenor, where we see the return of the ruthless orc, Baker's performance is absolutely astounding; you truly believe the hatred and sadism in Gul'dan’s every word.
He also gives a wonderful performance in Blizzard's animated short video that tells the story of the alternate universe’s version of Gul'dan, taking into account the element of time travel and alternate universes used in Warlords of Draenor and Legion.
Baker’s performance truly makes Gul'dan a character you can feel invested in despite his antagonistic nature.
Booker DeWitt (Bioshock Infinite)
Although we experience the world of Bioshock Infinite through a first-person view, it doesn’t mean its protagonist, Booker DeWitt, has no personality or character depth. Booker is a complex and emotional character with a difficult past: an alcoholic gambler who may very well suffer from PTSD (among a whole host of other problems), as well as being the world's worst decision-maker.
Even though the focus of the game is Elizabeth, Baker is able to draw you into the character of Booker and make you feel connected to him and his story, and he really sells Booker’s self-hatred and regret of his past actions.
Booker is portrayed as a level-headed man who doesn’t often act outside of that persona, which is why when he breaks free of those floodgates, it’s all the more powerful in terms of performance. His anger shines through in the final confrontation with the game’s prime antagonist, Zachary Comstock. Baker is able to deliver the anguish and confusion that Booker must feel at the revelation given to the players at the ending in such a masterful way, as well as the emotional acceptance that there is only one way to end what he has caused.
Joel (The Last of Us)
Joel is a fan-favorite character of Baker’s, and when you see his performance in The Last of Us, you can understand why. A man in his late 40s in a world that has taken everything from him, he lost his daughter and has been fighting a war against the infected zombie-like creatures for years.
Over the years, Joel became less bound by his own morality, and he will do whatever it takes to survive. When he is paired up with another survivor, Ellie, a 14-year-old girl who may be the cure to the outbreak, he becomes dedicated to her protection and safety. Over the course of the game, they form a father-daughter-like bond.
Through both voice acting and motion capture, Baker shines in this role, able to express the emotion of Joel losing his only child in a heartbreaking first scene. He is a ruthless man, but he is a man still capable of deeply caring for another human in the way he cares about Ellie.
Along with Ashley Johnson's performance as Ellie, Baker's groundbreaking performance in The Last of Us is largely what makes it such a popular game, with one of the best narratives in gaming thus far.
So there you have it: eight of Troy Baker’s best performances in video games. What has been your favorite of Baker's roles? Is there a game series you wish he was in? Let us know in the comments below, and stick with GameSkinny for all things gaming.