A listener represents a microphone in the game. A listener has a position and orientation in the game's 3D space. During game play, the coordinates of the listener are compared with the game object's position, so that 3D sounds associated with game objects can be assigned to the appropriate speakers to mimic a real 3D environment. Programmers must ensure that the listener's positional information is kept up to date; otherwise sounds will be rendered through the wrong speakers.

Multiple Listeners

In a single-player game where you always see only one point of view in the game, one listener is enough. However, if multiple players can play on the same system, or if multiple views are displayed at the same time, each view requires its own listener so audio is appropriately rendered for all of these views. The Wwise sound engine supports an unlimited number of listeners.

By default, every registered game object is assigned to the first listener only. However, the programmer has the flexibility to dynamically assign or unassign any game object from any listener.

There are many challenges to implementing audio for multiple listeners because the positioning of sound sources doesn't always make sense in relation to what each player is seeing. This is mostly caused by a game using only one set of speakers to reproduce the 3D environment for several players. Wwise offers a variety of tools and techniques to offset this limitation so that the audio experience is as realistic as possible for all players. For more information about how Wwise handles multiple listeners, refer to Integrating Listeners in the SDK doc.

Listeners - Roles and Responsibilities

The following table shows you which tasks related to listeners are the responsibility of the sound designer and which ones are the responsibility of the programmer:


Sound Designer (Wwise)

Programmer (Game Code/Tools)

Registering listeners as game objects


Setting the listener's positional information


Managing multiple listeners


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