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Karnot

Visual storytelling tricks

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Is there some kind of a list i could use ?
I'll give you a classical example of what i'm talking about, everybody knows that one : two cowboys face off with pistols aimed at each other, then the camera shows the back of one of them, you hear the shots, there is a suspenseful pause, then camera switches to a different angle that shows both men, and after another second one of them falls to the ground. These kinds of things. Small psychological tricks that draw the viewer in.

Or the one where the viewer is shown a man with a blank expression on his face, and then it cuts to another image, and viewer's interpretation of the man's expression is different depending on the image following after it.

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Something massive explodes while the protagonist walks casually toward the camera in slow motion.

Also, Wilhelm scream.

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I think your cowboy example is as much of a trope, though not as heavily used in recent times. Both attempt to convey something to the viewer. The efficacy of each can be debated, but both are trying to achieve the same goal.

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Both attempt to convey something to the viewer[/quote]
You are incorrect, sir. What i (and others) so vaguely call "visual storytelling" conveys (Important !) a sequence of events in a way that tries to engage the viewer. What does "Wilhelm scream" convey to anyone ? Nothing at all.

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One thing you could do is feed the player small pieces of the story through out the course of the game. This can be done via messages written on the wall "The cake is a lie", journal entries, quick animated sequences, audio logs, etc.

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I think it would be hard to graft a device from a list. They sort of have to arise spontaneously from the narrative. I'm finding it hard to think of examples that aren't tied very closely to specific events.

The gunslinger example only works when you have a standoff and both actors are acting simultaneously. It's a trick that works in that kind of situation and gets used in action movies (and cop shows) all the time but isn't readily adapted to a narrative that doesn't include that specific scenario. It would work with two people sword-fighting, or two people having a duel in 18th century France but won't work as well in narratives that don't have this kind of standoff.

Another example (maybe?) is the scene in which an actor receives a threatening phone call and then looks out the window and sees the person who is making the call. The call is transformed from a distant, possible event to an immediate probable event in a single moment. Is that the kind of thing you're talking about?

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visual sequence of events?
the background of the current scene is the foreground of the next scene.. repeat for a few scenes.

ex: imagine a sequence of scifi war scenes, first scene you see a guy tending his wounds, through the window in the room you can see war of the world robots attacking the city. The next scene is a closer view of one of the tripods doing battle with people on the ground, the view is upwards towards the tripod top (you can see sky), jets fly overhead above the tripod.. next scene, you are following within the cockpit of that jet as he is issued orders to launch an attack..

That work for you?

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[color=#282828][font=helvetica, arial, verdana, tahoma, sans-serif]

Is there some kind of a list i could use ?

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Probably not. I would think, every film director in trying to emphasize an aspect of the movie creates his/her own tricks on the fly. Besides a list is simply a compilation of the tricks someone else thought of for their own movies that had different contexts and might have had different purposes, plus if a trick is popular it won't grab the viewer's attention that much, because the viewer will know what to expect. So it's best to come up with your own any way you look at this.

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