Microsoft Agent Animations for Merlin Character

[Microsoft Agent is deprecated as of Windows 7, and may be unavailable in subsequent versions of Windows.]

The Microsoft Agent Merlin Character is a copyrighted work of Microsoft Corporation.

Merlin supports the animations listed in the table below. Refer to Programming the Microsoft Agent Server Interface and Programming the Microsoft Agent Control for information on how to call the character's animations.

If accessing these character animations using the HTTP protocol and the control's Get or server's Prepare method, consider how you will download them. Instead of downloading all the animations at once, you may want to retrieve the Showing and Speaking state animations first. This will enable you to display the character quickly and have it speak while bringing down other animations asynchronously. In addition, to ensure that character and animation data load successfully, use the RequestComplete event. If a load request fails, you can retry loading the data or display an appropriate message.

If an animation's Return animation is defined using Exit branches, you do not need to call it explicitly; Agent automatically plays the Return animation before the next animation. However, if a Return animation is listed, you must call the animation using the Play method before another animation to provide a smooth transition. If no Return animation is listed, the animation typically ends without needing a transitional animation.

The character file includes sound effects for some animations as noted in the following table. Sound effects play only if this option is enabled in the Microsoft Agent property sheet. You can also disable sound effects in your application.

AnimationReturn AnimationSupports SpeakingSound EffectsAssigned to StateDescription
AcknowledgeNoneNoNoNoneNods head
AlertYes, using Exit branchesYesNoListeningStraightens and raises eyebrows
AnnounceYes, using Exit branchesYesYesNoneRaises trumpet and plays


Blinks eyes
ConfusedYes, using Exit branchesYesYesNoneScratches head
CongratulateYes, using Exit branchesYesYesNoneDisplays trophy
Congratulate_2Yes, using Exit branchesYesYesNoneApplauds
DeclineYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNoneRaises hands and shakes head
DoMagic1NoneYesNoNoneRaises magic wand
DoMagic2Yes, using Exit branchesNoYesNoneLowers wand, clouds appear
DontRecognizeYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNoneHolds hand to ear
ExplainYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNoneExtends arms to side
GestureDownYes, using Exit branchesYesNoGesturingDownGestures down
GestureLeftYes, using Exit branchesYesNoGesturingLeftGestures left
GestureRightYes, using Exit branchesYesNoGesturingRightGestures right
GestureUpYes, using Exit branchesYesNoGesturingUpGestures up
GetAttentionGetAttentionReturnYesYesNoneLeans forward and knocks
GetAttentionContinuedGetAttentionReturnYesYesNoneLeaning forward, knocks again
GetAttentionReturnNoneNoNoNoneReturns to neutral position
GreetYes, using Exit branchesYesYesNoneBows
Hearing_1NoneNoNoHearingEars extend (*looping animation)
Hearing_2NoneNoNoHearingTilts head left (*looping animation)
Hearing_3NoneNoNoHearingTurns head left (*looping animation)
Hearing_4NoneNoNoHearingTurns head right (*looping animation)
HideNoneNoYesHidingDisappears under cap
Idle1_1Yes, using Exit branchesNoNoIdlingLevel1


Takes breath
Idle1_2Yes, using Exit branchesNoNoIdlingLevel1


Glances left and blinks
Idle1_3Yes, using Exit branchesNoNoIdlingLevel1


Glances right
Idle1_4Yes, using Exit branchesNoNoIdlingLevel1


Glances up to the right and blinks
Idle2_1NoneNoNoIdlingLevel2Looks at wand and blinks
Idle2_2NoneNoNoIdlingLevel2Holds hands and blinks
Idle3_2Yes, using Exit branchesNoYesIdlingLevel3Falls asleep (*looping animation)
LookDownLookDownReturnNoNoNoneLooks down
LookDownBlinkLookDownReturnNoNoNoneBlinks looking down
LookDownReturnNone NoNoNoneReturns to neutral position
LookLeftLookLeftReturnNoNoNoneLooks left
LookLeftBlinkLookLeftReturnNoNoNoneBlinks looking left
LookLeftReturnNone NoNoNoneReturns to neutral position
LookRightLookRightReturnNoNoNoneLooks right
LookRightBlinkLookRightReturnNoNoNoneBlinks looking right
LookRightReturnNone NoNoNoneReturns to neutral position
LookUpLookUpReturnNoNoNoneLooks up
LookUpBlinkLookUpReturnNoNoNoneBlinks looking up
LookUpReturnNone NoNoNoneReturns to neutral position
MoveDownYes, using Exit branchesNoYesMovingDownFlies down
MoveLeftYes, using Exit branchesNoYesMovingLeftFlies left
MoveRightYes, using Exit branchesNoYesMovingRightFlies right
MoveUpYes, using Exit branchesNoYesMovingUpFlies up
PleasedYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNoneSmiles and holds hands together
ProcessNoNoYesNoneStirs caldron
ProcessingYes, using Exit branchesNoYesNoneStirs caldron (*looping animation)
ReadReadReturnYesYesNoneOpens book, reads and looks up
ReadContinuedReadReturnYesYesNoneReads and looks up
ReadReturnNoneNoYesNoneReturns to neutral position
ReadingYes, using Exit branchesNoYesNoneReads (*looping animation)
RestPoseNoneYesNoSpeakingNeutral position
SadYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNoneSad expression
SearchNoNoYesNoneLooks into crystal ball
SearchingYes, using Exit branchesNoYesNoneLooks into crystal ball (*looping animation)
ShowNoneNoYesShowingAppears out of cap
StartListeningYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNonePuts hand to ear
StopListeningYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNonePuts hands over ears
SuggestYes, using Exit branchesYesYesNoneDisplays lightbulb
SurprisedYes, using Exit branchesYesYesNoneLooks surprised
ThinkYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNoneLooks up with hand on chin
ThinkingNoNoNoNoneLooks up with hand on chin (*looping animation)
UncertainYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNoneLeans forward and raises eyebrow
WaveYes, using Exit branchesYesNoNoneWaves
WriteWriteReturnYesYesNoneOpens book, writes and looks up
WriteContinuedWriteReturnYesYesNoneWrites and looks up
WriteReturnNoneNoYesNoneReturns to neutral position
WritingYes, using Exit branchesNoYesNoneWrites (*looping animation)


* If you play a looping animation, you must use Stop to clear it before other animations in the character's queue will play.