Permission was granted by the deceased's family.
A character Viktor Vektor from Cyberpunk 2077.

With the permission and blessing of the deceased's family, CD Projekt Red used AI to replicate the voice of the late Miłogost Reczek in Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty. Reczek portrayed Viktor Vektor, friend of V and the first ripper doc you are introduced to in Cyberpunk 2077.

According to a report from Bloomberg, CD Projekt Red used AI to replicate Reczek's voice for additional performances in the newly released Phantom Liberty expansion for Cyberpunk 2077. According to CD Projekt Red's localization director Mikołaj Szwed, the studio had considered hiring a new actor to completely redo all of the lines for Viktor Vektor.

"We didn’t like [that] approach … This way we could keep his performance in the game and pay tribute to his wonderful performance as Viktor Vektor."
CD Projekt Red did get the blessing and permission from Reczek's family to use his voice. The family was said to be "very supportive" of the decision.

The studio replicated Reczek's voice using a voice-cloning AI called Respeecher. CD Projekt Red hired a different voice actor to perform and record the new lines for Viktor Vektor. They then used Respeecher to "create an algorithm that would alter the dialogue to sound like Reczek."

This news comes right as a myriad of concerns are being raised about the ethical use of AI created content across all forms of media. Just this month, SAG-AFTRA voted to approve a strike for game performers should negotiation with studios fall through. Of the topics of discussion in these negotiations in games, movies, and shows is the use of AI to recreate someone's work without permission.

In receiving the family's consent, this specific case with the use of Reczek's voice does seem to be on the more ethical side of this whole debate. Still, this is undoubtedly not the last we will hear about the ethical issues raised by using AI to recreate performers' voices.

In addition to voicing Viktor Vektor in Cyberpunk, Reczek also voiced Vesemir in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. Reczek also did voice work and dubbing work for games like Detroit: Become Human (Polish VO for Carl Manfred), 2017's Prey, and was the Speaker in Destiny 2. Reczek passed away in December 2021.