AI voice-acting tool xVASynth gets even better at recreating videogame voices

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In January, Nat Clayton highlighted a neat tool for modders that was used to give a fan-made trailer entirely AI-synthesized voice acting. That tool is called xVASynth (opens in new tab), and it's the work of software developer Dan Ruta, who just updated it to version 2.0.

The video above demonstrates what's new with the help of some familiar voices, recreated by AI models trained on voice data to recreate a specific character. Not perfectly, of course—they have the clipped, hurried tone that gives away synthesized speech, as well as occasional mispronunciations—but good enough for mods. You'll hear characters like Cave Johnson from Portal 2, Elizabeth from BioShock Infinite, Butch from Fallout 3, Lady Dimitrescu from Resident Evil Village, and Widowmaker from Overwatch all extolling the improvements in xVASynth 2.0.

Those improvements include support for installable pronunciation dictionaries via a community project called xVADict, which adds the unique words games are full of. There's also a 3D visualizer to make searching through hundred of AI models from dozens of games easier, clustering similar voices and letting you add filters to narrow them down. Audio quality has been improved, and an additional slider for energy control added alongside the existing sliders to modify the pitch and duration of individual lines.

Plenty of Skyrim mods already use xVASynth, from Phenderix Magic World (opens in new tab) to Positive Undressed Reactions (opens in new tab), and it also supports games like Cyberpunk 2077, Civilization 6, Dragon Age: Inquisition, and The Witcher 3.

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games (opens in new tab). He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun (opens in new tab), The Big Issue, GamesRadar (opens in new tab), Zam (opens in new tab), Glixel (opens in new tab), Five Out of Ten Magazine (opens in new tab), and Playboy.com (opens in new tab), whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.