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Baldur's Gate Voice Actor David Warner Passes Away At 80

Hollywood legend David Warner passed away at 80 years old on July 24. Many may know him from his work as the gun wielding valet Spicer Lovejoy from "Titanic," the investigative photographer Keith Jennings in "The Omen," or his triple role as Encom Executive Ed Dillenger, Commander Sark and the Master Control Program in the 1982 Disney sci-fi classic, "Tron." He even played the scientist who created the ooze in the second "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" movie. Still others may know him from his recurring roles as Gorkon, Chancellor of the Klingon High Council and the Cardassian officer Gul Madred in "Star Trek" – or any number of the dozens of other roles he's played over the years. IMDb credits this genre icon with 228 acting roles dating all the way back to 1962.

There was a sternness about Warner that lent a sense of gravitas to any scene he was in. This no-doubt made him a desirable candidate for any role featuring an imposing, older British man – putting him at the top of many a call-sheet. It wasn't just film and television that benefited from his performances either. Warner also lent his voice to a handful of video games. He was in "Privateer 2," "Descent 3," "Star Wars: Force Commander," "Fallout: A Post Nuclear Role-Playing Game," and he reprised his role as Chancellor Gorkon in "Star Trek: Klingon Academy" – but the gaming role he was probably best known for was Jon Irenicus in the "Baldur's Gate" franchise.

The villain makes the game

Jon Irenicus was the key antagonist of the "Baldur's Gate 2" expansion, "Shadows of Amn." He was an elven mage from the forest city of Soldanessellar who kidnapped the player-character in order to enact cruel experiments in an attempt to restore his scarred soul, destroy the Tree of Life and ascend to godhood. This wasn't the only time he would appear in the "Dungeons and Dragons"-based franchise, either. Irenicus was so popular that developer Beamdog added a younger version of the character in an expansion called "Siege of Dragonspear" which was added to the Enhanced Edition of the original "Baldur's Gate."

One of the things that made Warner's performance so memorable was his delivery. Irenicus was sadistic, contemptuous and quick to rage. He was incredibly powerful and ambivalent to the suffering of those in his path. These were all attributes that could only be expressed through voice as the isometric rpg offered only the most simplistic character models and no facial animations whatsoever. Still, Warner not only managed to convey these characteristics in every scene he was in, he performed them with such a casual menace that there was no doubt of the threat that Irenicus represented.

His passing is truly a loss for the cinema and gaming communities, but his work will certainly be remembered for years to come.