Next time you go to replay Deus Ex (which will be within one week, now that I have put the idea in your head), perhaps you'll want to try it with a twist. A brand new mod named The Lay D Denton Project turns JC Denton from a stoic fella into a stoic lady, complete with full voice acting and a script tweaked to fit. Meet the female JC in the trailer below.
"The performance strives to faithfully preserve the character of JC," the creators say. "Every single line was performed directly after listening to the original Male JC's read. While not blatantly copying every single line, the original performance was used as the primary anchor point for the line reads. Variations were only made after careful consideration."
Along with JC Denton's spoken script fully redone by voice actor Karen Rohan, the mod edits many NPC lines to refer to her correctly, recasts some NPCs, adds a few characters whose function is primarily to acknowledge that JC is a lady (weird?), and changes some small scenarios like someone mistaking JC for Paul and a woman in a club flirting with JC.
Some of those special new lady lines in the trailer seem a bit out of place and unnecessary to me. And so what if Mercedes hits on a female JC? Weird. JC is such a blank anyway. But yeah, JC herself sounds a decent stoic cyborg. I started a new playthrough to check her out in game and I'll continue this way. It's not the way I'd play the game for the first time but, you know, this is far from my first time playing Deus Ex.
The Lay D gang plan to release the mod's audio files so other modders can put her into their creations too, if they want.
I enjoyed the team's explanation of the different ways they've cut and chopped words and sentences to correct for a female JC, some clever techniques:
- Combing through character dialogue and transposing syllables. Taking someone's "sh" and splicing it onto the front of "he" worked often. Using "er" to append to the h in "him", was less frequently successful but worked in some cases. Changing Mister to Miss by cutting the "ter" was the most reliably successful and is heard frequently throughout the game.
- Transposing words. This was often less successful but did have its place in some areas. As a bonus, we found a few areas where we could naturally add a pronoun. While perhaps not necessary, every bit can help further the goal of immersion.
- Cut the reference. Despite all our best efforts, sometimes we just couldn't win. These lines were dealt with by removing or editing the line "Sir, you are creating a disturbance!" → "You are creating a disturbance!"
- Get creative. In some cases, the references couldn't be cut naturally and couldn't be fixed. One example is the UNATCO agents offering JC tear gas. "Give 'em the grenades." Just wouldn't edit well and was needed because otherwise it's very unclear what is being talked about. In order to solve this, we added the JC line, "What, gas grenades?" to allow her to identify the topic of the conversation.