Akali, one of League of Legends' most popular champions, received a brand new voiceover for all her dialog in the PBE (Public Beta Environment) version of the game. Initially, the new voice actress (VA), Ashly Burch, was only supposed to be involved with Akali's Star Guardian skin voicelines.
However, it seems that Riot Games decided to do a revamp of the voicelines for her base skin as well. It goes without saying that the community is not at all pleased with the decision.
Regarding the sudden change, one community member commented in an ongoing Reddit thread, stating:
"I miss the rasp and sass in her voice almost immediately"
Players are complaining that Akali used to be a chaotic kind of person. However, the latest VA makes her sound more like a cheerful hero, which goes against the entire lore and history of the character.
League of Legends developer wants to give players more time to soak in the changes to Akali before making a decision
Akali's brand new voiceover in the PBE sparked major controversy within the community. Many players were disappointed that it was done without any prior notice from Riot Games.
Obviously, Akali players felt especially betrayed as they are of the opinion that the character has lost her identity with the new voiceover. Nevertheless, League of Legends developer NeoLexical took to Reddit to interact with the players regarding the issue.
The developer claimed that it is true that the changes do make Akali sound a lot more heroic. In fact, it does take a major shift from the aspect where Akali should stand in the middle ground between Zed and Shen.
However, she also feels that Ashly Burch, the new voice actress, has done a great job and, if needed, they can create the same tone by re-recording the voice lines in the future. Nevertheless, the Riot Games developer wants players to spend some more time getting habituated with the new voiceover before jumping to any conclusions.
NeoLexical feels that it is always difficult to accept change, especially when players have been habituated with a certain Akali voice for so many years. However, the League of Legends developer feels that if given time, players will feel more at home with the new voiceover.
The changes will not be introduced to the main client as of yet, so that players can provide developers with more constructive criticism in the coming days. If the changes are indeed needed, then the developers will revert back to the old voiceover and wait for a more opportune moment to make the changes.
It is important to remember, though, that the voicelines of Star Guardian Akali will not change. This is only for the base version of Akali that was altered by Riot Games.