Middleware developers The Game Creators have announced DarkVoices, a new package for low-cost, realistic lip-synching in games.
DarkVoices is based on the technology of loading or recording speech and converting it to a series of annotations, which describe how the mouth should move. The data produced from this process can be integrated into many graphics modeling packages. The product also includes a sample 3D head model named Anna, rigged to play the lip-sync data, as well as example DarkBASIC Professional source code.
Notable DarkVoices features include the ability to produce mouth movement data from a WAV file and edit it; loading existing WAV files or record your own, directly within the editing tool; a command-line EXE to convert a directory of WAV files as a batch; a Win32 DLL provided to convert WAV files in real-time within games; mouth data stored in a text file for easier parsing; and a licence permitting all forms of commercial use, royalty free.
"Putting realistic, talking characters into your game is always a challenge and since we aim to make life easier for developers, we decided it was time to do something about it," said Game Creators financial director Rick Vanner. "We’ve stripped away the mystique of this technology and adapted it for hands-on game development."