Hi Thomas,

I think not including Sapi support just for this reason is the wrong approach. We are going to have to add it again eventually as more and more voices are released for 64 bit Windows, so better get it done sooner than later. Also one must consider the fact that one voice is better than nothing. A game like Entombed could still run fine with one installed voice, where as it would be nearly impossible to create it with prerecorded sound files.

As for atmospheric speech, we are in agreement. In the case of your game I personally feel that it would benefit a great deal by replacing that prerecorded tts voice with a real actor, as even a narrator needs emotion in this sort of context. I can understand the voice, but I have to concentrate a bit because of the speed that it's set to. Certainly it doesn't prevent me from playing and enjoying the game as I have started doing over the last two weeks, but it would really be a blast to get rid of the tts.

Kind regards,

Philip Bennefall
----- Original Message ----- From: "Thomas Ward" <thomasward1...@gmail.com>
To: <phi...@blastbay.com>; "Gamers Discussion list" <gamers@audyssey.org>
Sent: Sunday, May 01, 2011 11:54 AM
Subject: Re: [Audyssey] Regarding sapi and BGT

Hi Philip,

You are right, but I was just concerned about the fact that a lot of
developers such as Jim Kitchen do use Sapi in their games and it would
appear our choices for Sapi output on Windows 64-bit platforms are
pretty much limited to Anna, ESpeak, or some of the high priced
Lequendo voices that do currently support 64-bit platforms. If someone
were to write a new game in BGT, didn't want to do the work of using
human voiceovers, etc and chose to use Sapi instead any user who just
purchased a new 64-bit machine would be getting the short end of the
stick as far as Sapi voices goes. That's not directly the developers
fault of course, but more a matter of TTS manufacturers and 64-bit
Windows. We have the exact same issue on Linux where the default TTS
engine, ESpeak, works fine on 64-bit Linux. However, install any of
the commercial voices like Cepstral David, Callie, Dianne, or the
Dectalk and they aren't going to work. That makes me think twice about
including Speech-Dispatcher and Sapi support in my G3D Engine given
the fact there isn't much to choose from on 64-bit platforms.

However, like you said I also prefer human speech anyway if I can get
it over Sapi output. So its not a huge loss. I've been using
prerecorded speech for a while now, and will continue to do so. If I
have to use a Sapi voice at least I can record something like Scansoft
Tom and use it rather than ESpeak or something like that for games.
Something like ESpeak or Eloquence is fine for day to day computer
work, but in a highly atmosperic game forget it.


On 4/30/11, Philip Bennefall <phi...@blastbay.com> wrote:
Hi Thomas,

I have heard the same thing, that only a couple of voices work reliably on
Windows 7 64 bit. However, I think this is more a problem for the text to
speech vendors than those of us who write game engines. There is simply
nothing we can do about it, except use Sapi in the way that Microsoft
outlines and that's that. If it doesn't work, it's out of our hands so to

I use human speech for most of my games anyway. There is nothing that annoys me more than a text to speech voice in an otherwise atmospheric game. In my upcoming title I am currently using Sapi for the in game speech, that is to say the type of speech that would be done by a narrator. This is only while
I develop the game, however, and I'll definitely be switching to a real
actor before release.

Kind regards,

Philip Bennefall

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