Examiner chats with Peter Busch, vice president of business development at Faceware, who talks about the company’s new software- and how when combined with the localization service of Binari Sonori, will drastically change the way audio from video games from all over the world are adapted to different markets.
Examiner: How will this change the video game industry?
Peter Busch: This new service presents an intelligent approach to localization, which minimally impacts both budget and pipeline while maximizing quality through the integration of our video-based facial motion capture technology.
Developers looking to improve their localized games will find this new service seamless to their production cycle while allowing them to cater to a worldwide audience of gamers.
Examiner: Can you think of one game in particular that this service could have helped immensely?
Busch: I can think of many games, as nearly every title that localizes in multiple languages can benefit. This will especially benefit story and cinematic-driven titles where localized content is pivotal to the success of the storytelling component. We’re of course excited to bring this new service to our existing clients, which include Take Two Interactive, Sony Computer Entertainment, Activision, Square-Enix, Ubisoft, and Electronic Arts.
Examiner: How much time will this save companies trying to localize their games?
Busch: The true value is in time savings, quality gains in animation and the ability to reach an international audience with a quality game without significant increases in budget. This new service now allows all animated content to be animated first in one language, and then to sync the audio for all additional languages to one animation. In other words, there will no longer be a need to produce animated content for each language, as was done in the past. This is the benefit of using video-based motion capture for producing animation!
Examiner: How will this move benefit both companies?
Busch: For Faceware, this new service opens many doors and opportunities in international and vertical markets that we’ve always wanted to have a solution for. For Binari Sonori, it adds a new service to their quiver of professional audio services for games. We’re both excited at the prospect of co-offering this new service as it’s a great case study in just how adaptable our technology is.
Examiner: How easy is the service to use?
Busch: It’s quite simple, as all of the components that are involved in the process are taken care of on the front end of the service. Development studios will capture their performance capture takes in an audio booth with our Faceware Headcam systems, and Binari Sonori will handle the rest. The largest change that will need to be considered is the use of video in the audio booth. Because Binari Sonori were so involved in building this pipeline, we have full endorsement from their audio engineers on how they integrated video and audio together, ensuring that anyone wanting to use this service will have an easy and seamless experience.
Examiner: This deal took months to hammer through. What was the process like? Are both sides happy with the deal?
Busch: Yes, this structure is mutually beneficial and plays to the strengths of our companies, both of which have decades of experience in their given field. Binari Sonori first approached Faceware at the Game Developers Conference in 2012 to discuss how they could use our hardware in combination with their audio recording services. The next few months were a combination of brain-storming and pipeline building. In creating our demo content, it was a great proving ground to pinpoint the execution of this service. We are so excited to offer this at the time when quality demands and global demand for next-gen content are higher than ever.
Examiner: What are the future goals of both companies now that the deal has been made?
Busch: We maintain a very close relationship and are currently discussing future development and the integration of additional products and technologies, such as real-time-performance capture. Real-time performance capture will allow directors and actors to see the characters they are portraying animated live in the audio booth. Let’s say we’re looking forward to this summer.