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To effectively manage the audio and motion components of a game, Wwise puts all the audio and motion data for your game into banks. A bank is basically a file that contains your game's audio and motion data, media, or both. These banks are loaded into a game's platform memory at a particular point in the game. By loading only what is necessary, you can optimize the amount of memory that is being used for audio and motion by each platform. Banks are the product of all your work and contain the final audio and/or motion content that becomes part of your game.
In Wwise, there are two types of banks:
Initialization bank—a special bank that contains all the general information about a project, including information on the bus hierarchy, and information on States, Switches, RTPCs, and Environmental effects. The Initialization bank is automatically created when Wwise generates the SoundBanks. The Initialization bank is usually loaded once at the beginning of your game so that all the general project information is easily accessible during game play. By default, the Initialization bank is named “Init.bnk”.
SoundBank—a file that contains a combination of Event data, sound and motion structure data, and/or media files. Unlike the Initialization bank, SoundBanks are generally loaded and unloaded at different points in the game to better utilize platform memory usage. Event and project structure metadata can also be added to different SoundBanks than the media allowing you to load media files only when they are absolutely required. Because all platforms are different, Wwise allows you to easily tailor the SoundBanks for each platform and generate the SoundBanks for all platforms simultaneously. Wwise also provides you with tools for troubleshooting any issues related to your SoundBanks to make sure that you are respecting the limitations of the different platforms.
To help you work more efficiently, a SoundBank layout is available in Wwise. This layout contains all the views you will need to create, manage, and generate the SoundBanks for your project, including the SoundBank Manager, SoundBank Editor, Project Explorer, and Event Viewer.