Phonetic Arts Launches PA Commentator at GameFest

Phonetic Arts Launches PA Commentator at GameFest

Dynamic Speech to Bring Sports Game Commentary to Life.

February 2nd 2010. Cambridge, UK. Phonetic Arts, today announced PA Commentator, a new product that brings live, dynamic spoken commentary to sports games. Phonetic Arts said it would launch PA Commentator at the upcoming GameFest conference, to be hosted by Microsoft in Seattle on February 10th and 11th 2010.

Good commentary in a sports game is vital to creating immersion. But no matter how many lines are recorded, it has been impossible to achieve the fluid combination of player names, team names and game play that occurs in real television commentary, as there are literally tens of millions of different combinations.

PA Commentator addresses this problem. PA Commentator works by using existing lines of recorded commentary to make new, virtual lines. It uses signal processing, sophisticated phonetic models and linguistic algorithms to ensure that the process of making the virtual lines is reliable and completely automatic. The new virtual lines sound perfectly natural and are indistinguishable from the originals.

The result is that the commentator in the game can describe every play, mention every player name, every team name, score, stadium and every other detail of the game, all in a completely fluent, perfectly natural manner.

The virtual commentary can be generated offline and used in the game just like normal audio, or it can be generated live in the game by the Phonetic Arts Engine. The in-game option means the game has access to millions of extra lines of commentary with virtually no extra memory requirement. The Phonetic Arts Engine ships with Xbox® 360, Playstation® 3 and PC in-game licenses.

Paul Taylor, Chief Executive Officer of Phonetic Arts said “We’re excited about launching PA Commentator; it is an excellent system that really lifts the believability and immersion of sports games. The system can generate literally tens of millions of unique lines of commentary meaning even the most dedicated sports games players will be unlikely ever to hear the same line of commentary twice.”

He went on “We are particularly excited to be launching this at GameFest, where the theme this year is Natal. PA Commentator complements the Natal vision, bringing intelligence and natural interaction a significant step further.”

Phonetic Arts was founded in 2006 by Paul Taylor, Ian Hodson and Anthony Tomlinson. Its goal is to revolutionise the computer games industry by allowing computer games to generate natural speech dynamically. PA Commentator is just one of the many possible applications of Phonetic Arts technology for games.

Phonetic Arts will be at the GameFest conference 10-11, February 2010 and the DICE summit in Las Vegas, 17th-19th February 2010. Contact Steve Tyson +44 (0) 845 234 1224 or by email for a private demonstration of the technology.

Video of PA Commentator in action to follow later this week.


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