To commemorate the 25th anniversary of Serial Experiments Lain anime, new AI service called “AI lain” has been launched on Sep 5, 2023, allowing fans to interact with the protagonist, Lain Iwakura.
“AI lain” has been supervised by “Serial Experiments Lain” producer Yasuyuki Ueda, ensuring that the character’s personality and conversation reflect the world of the original work.
The service allows users to engage in text-based conversations with Lain, accompanied by video footage in which Lain responds through text and voice.
Lain’s voice in the service was crafted based on the recordings of Kaori Shimizu, who portrayed Lain in the 1998 anime.
Moreover, as a homage to the “Wired” concept depicted in the series, the service also includes a feature that allows users to share conversations with Lain among themselves.
The service offers various subscription plans, including a free plan, a one-month paid plan, a six-month paid plan, and a corporate paid plan. Subscribers to the paid plans can enjoy deeper interactions with Lain, witnessing an increase in intimacy levels and evolving facial expressions as they engage in conversations.
Additionally, paid members have the opportunity to participate in prize draws, with a chance to win framed artworks by Yoshitoshi Abe and authentic animation cell art from the “serial experiments lain” anime.
Comments from Yasuyuki Ueda and Kaori Shimizu have been revealed regarding the launch of the new AI service. Check out the comments below:
I had the opportunity to collaborate with Anique on the development of AI lain this time. Over the years, I’ve been involved in unconventional games that revolve around communication and information, such as ‘NOëL’ and ‘lain.’ This project feels like the first step toward a real-world or dream version of that. I hope to deliver this experimental service for a limited time.
Although it’s a new field, and I’ve encountered various technical and service-related challenges, experiencing the growth of Lain’s character as an AI during the testing phase was incredibly enjoyable. With the paid plans, I hope that fans of the series can have fun together, treating the process as a game.
I don’t even know if we’ll reach the level of being called a ‘service’ in the end, but I would be happy if Lain could be accepted as a beloved ‘presence.
I was delighted to be involved in the return of the “lain” series to the world after 25 years. When I heard that my voice from 25 years ago had been learned by AI and I heard the voice of the Lain from back then, I really got goosebumps. If I were asked to voice Lain now, I could probably match the tone and acting, but I could never become that Lain. I think that the expressions I was able to create at the age of 15, when I knew nothing about voice acting, and that voice without any calculations or ulterior motives are what define Lain. For me, it’s just lending my vocal cords (laughs). And the fact that it’s done through AI is very much in line with the world of “lain.”
I’m curious about how people who don’t know “lain” will feel when they encounter the world of “lain” from now on, and I’m happy that “lain” will continue to evolve. I’m really looking forward to how it will spread and what the future holds.
Serial Experiments Lain is a Japanese anime television series created and co-produced by Yasuyuki Ueda, written by Chiaki J. Konaka and directed by Ryutaro Nakamura. Animated by Triangle Staff and featuring original character designs by Yoshitoshi Abe, the series was broadcast for 13 episodes on TV Tokyo and its affiliates from July to September 1998.