Troy Baker Is Working With NFTs, but Fans Are Unimpressed [Update]

By | January 14, 2022

Editor’s Note: The subject of NFTs is currently a very controversial topic in the gaming community. IGN urges community members to be respectful when engaging in conversation around this subject and does not endorse harassment of any kind. We’ve also updated some language in our article for clarity.

Update: Troy Baker has apologized for his earlier tweets, saying that the “hate/create part” might have been “a bit antagonistic,” and asking fans on social media to forgive him. His full thread along with the original story can be seen below.

Voice actor Troy Baker has announced he is partnering with an NFT company, and his fans are less than impressed.

Baker, who is most famous for his role as Joel in The Last of Us, revealed on Twitter that he’s partnering with Voiceverse, a company that helps create and promote AI powered voice NFTs. These text-to-speech voices are designed with the intention of being used to create audiobooks, podcasts, read scripts, and other projects that require voice over without the need for an actual voice actor.

“I’m partnering with [VoiceverseNFT] to explore ways where together we might bring new tools to new creators to make new things, and allow everyone a chance to own & invest in the IP’s they create,” said Baker, before signing off “You can hate. Or you can create. What’ll it be?”

At the time of writing, the tweet has invited vastly more replies and quote retweets than likes, revealing the controversial nature of the topic.

The largely negative response to Baker’s announcement includes a variety of concerns, including those about how NFTs impact artists, actors, and the creative industries at large.

Replies have tried to draw Baker’s attention to how many artists have fallen victim to NFT scams, and that the NFT movement as a whole has fundamental flaws in regards to its use as a creative platform.

Others have draw attention to the environmental impact of NFTs, and their use in potential fraud and tax evasion.

Essentially, the reaction can be summed up succinctly with this tweet:

The NFT debate seems like it’s going to be a major games industry talking point in 2022; Square Enix’s President noted that he was exploring them in a New Year’s letter, and this follows EA’s claims of NFTs being an important part of the future. Sega has also hopped on the NFT bandwagon, but says it will drop plans if fans see it as “simple moneymaking”.

While the industry does seem to be pushing into the field, it hasn’t stopped fans fighting back. STALKER 2’s developers cancelled its own NFT plans in less than an hour after fan backlash.

Matt Purslow is IGN’s UK News and Entertainment Writer.