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blueshogun96

My Trailer: How Bad Is It?

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blueshogun96    2264

One thing I have been considering for my upcoming games is creating trailers.  Tbh, I don't believe I've ever created a very effective trailer (one that I'd show to the public on a massive scale), but I'd like to ensure that I do not make common n00b or indie mistakes.  There are some rules I've already read up on, and other (at least to me) are just downright common sense.

 

What I did:

 

1. Made 3 video captures between 12 and 14 seconds.

2. Made some basic logos (to fit the style of the game).

3. Added some brief descriptions between footage.

4. Added a screen talking about what platforms the game will support as well as a copyright string at the bottom.

5. Used some basic and soothing music that would suit the game's genre and style (at least I tried to).

 

What I didn't/refused to do:

 

1. Make the trailer longer then 90 seconds.

2. Waste time with flashy logos or put much emphasis on them.

3. Add some random heavy metal or techno song (really, anyone who uses "Let the Bodies Hit the Floor" as their trailer music is just asking for failure since people are notoriously tired of hearing it and will likely click the back button).

4. Do some lame commentary in the background.

5. Make an entire video with me just playing the game.

 

What I believe I did wrong:

 

1. The screen at 0:24 saying "Simple but challenging gameplay ... and with progressive difficulty" probably wasn't a good idea since it looks obvious enough.

2. I didn't include a release date at the end.

3. I didn't include a link, or mention my website.

4. The X:Y coordinate debug output isn't very professional to have on a trailer.

5. Probably should fade out the music as it finishes.

 

I'm sure there's more but that's what I've come up with at the moment.  This isn't a trailer that I've made public because I already know it's not ready.  And without further adieu, here it is.

 

[media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8X1lVnQq5A[/media]

 

Feel free to do your absolute worst.  I like putting everything to the ultimate test before falling in love with it only to have my digital heart broken into a million and one pixels later.  To be on the safe side, I assume that my game or my trailer is complete crap and let the masses decide.  You guys have always been realistic and brutally honest (and sometimes downright douchey), but that's the type of critique I need right now.   

 

Thanks for watching. smile.png

 

Shogun.

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blueshogun96    2264

This game looks a lot like golf. What I mean is that it's probably a lot more fun playing it than it is watching trailers of it.

I can agree with this.

 

So, are you also saying that creating a trailer for this game is not necessary or worth it?

 

Shogun.

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Alpha_ProgDes    6921

This game looks a lot like golf. What I mean is that it's probably a lot more fun playing it than it is watching trailers of it.

I can agree with this.

 

So, are you also saying that creating a trailer for this game is not necessary or worth it?

 

Shogun.

 

I wouldn't say that. It's nice to see what the game is like. Also, you couldn't do a better job with showing your games with screenshots. I just don't know what to add or change in your trailer to better convey "fun".

Edited by Alpha_ProgDes

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IanBarker    105

The trailer gets the point across, but you could make it nicer by having better designed font slides, right now it's clear you just typed something out in a couple seconds. .  Also the logo looks really choppy.

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blueshogun96    2264

Nicer font slides?  How so?  Actually, I intentionally used that font for this trailer with an all white background and was planning on keeping it that way.  My reason for that is because I wanted the game to have a "Windows Metro" feel to it for all platforms.  If that's not the best of ideas, then I may change that.

 

I know the logo doesn't look too good.  Changing it will happen sooner or later.

 

Shogun.

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Sandman    2210

 My reason for that is because I wanted the game to have a "Windows Metro" feel to it for all platforms.  If that's not the best of ideas, then I may change that.

 

This game looks like it was tailor made for showing off some cool particle effects. Your game looks like it could be fun, but it's not very pretty. The Windows metro feel isn't really coming across all that well.

 

Some might say particle effects are overdone, and that flying squares are innovative and new. Which may be true, but I still think that pretty explodey lights will look much cooler - and will be a lot easier to sell - than small flying squares any day.

 

Your text bits aren't very meaningful, and the language is a bit odd. "Every action affects your gameplay session's outcome". Who says "gameplay session"? Technical game developery people might, but to a Joe Gamer it sounds a bit wordy and weird.

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szecs    2990

I like the game and the looks, effects etc...

However, I don't like that debugging-like coordinates print on the bottom left.

 

The rules are quite simple, maybe I'd add them to the trailer.

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blueshogun96    2264

 My reason for that is because I wanted the game to have a "Windows Metro" feel to it for all platforms.  If that's not the best of ideas, then I may change that.

 

This game looks like it was tailor made for showing off some cool particle effects. Your game looks like it could be fun, but it's not very pretty. The Windows metro feel isn't really coming across all that well.

 

Some might say particle effects are overdone, and that flying squares are innovative and new. Which may be true, but I still think that pretty explodey lights will look much cooler - and will be a lot easier to sell - than small flying squares any day.

 

Your text bits aren't very meaningful, and the language is a bit odd. "Every action affects your gameplay session's outcome". Who says "gameplay session"? Technical game developery people might, but to a Joe Gamer it sounds a bit wordy and weird.

 

Not very pretty?  Before I answer that, let me ask you this.  Have you ever played the game sinuous?  If so, are you aware of what made it successful, in spite of it's visual simplicity?

 

Honestly, the flashy lights thingy is something I've seen so many times that it really doesn't appeal to me.  I wanted to do/try something different, like what Kenta Cho does does with his games.

 

I can understand the text bits being too wordy or technical, but I thought "gameplay session" would be self explanatory   Is there a different term you'd prefer?  At that moment, I couldn't think of anything else.

 

I like the game and the looks, effects etc...

However, I don't like that debugging-like coordinates print on the bottom left.

 

The rules are quite simple, maybe I'd add them to the trailer.

 

Yeah, I'm not going to include that in my actual trailer.  I forgot to disable that before making the recordings.

 

And instead of the first screen of obvious text, I'll find an interesting way of explaining the rules of the game.

 

Thanks for the replies so far.  I really appreciate it.

 

Shogun.

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Adaline    710

How bad is it ? Well not bad at all ! laugh.png

Just about the logo, the curved thick line seems too irregular, not polished for me. Antialiasing is missing on it (?)

 

I really like the music at the beginning (0 to 20 seconds), but rythms, flute and lead synth after that seems to me a bit *too much*, concrete.

Edited by Tournicoti

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blueshogun96    2264

This reminds me of Boogaloopers smile.png

boogaloopers.jpg

It was a fun game. One of the only shareware games I ever registered.

 

When I'm on my Notebook PC, I'm going to try this out. Thanks.

 

How bad is it ? Well not bad at all ! laugh.png

Just about the logo, the curved thick line seems too irregular, not polished for me. Antialiasing is missing on it (?)

 

I really like the music at the beginning (0 to 20 seconds), but rythms, flute and lead synth after that seems to me a bit *too much*, concrete.

 

I created the logo with MS Paint, so you can see why it looks so bad, lol.

 

I also agree with you on the music aspect.  The rythms kinda ruin it and atm, I didn't have any music that didn't eventually have just a simple tune.

 

Shogun.

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dakota.potts    455

 

 My reason for that is because I wanted the game to have a "Windows Metro" feel to it for all platforms.  If that's not the best of ideas, then I may change that.

 

This game looks like it was tailor made for showing off some cool particle effects. Your game looks like it could be fun, but it's not very pretty. The Windows metro feel isn't really coming across all that well.

 

Some might say particle effects are overdone, and that flying squares are innovative and new. Which may be true, but I still think that pretty explodey lights will look much cooler - and will be a lot easier to sell - than small flying squares any day.

 

Your text bits aren't very meaningful, and the language is a bit odd. "Every action affects your gameplay session's outcome". Who says "gameplay session"? Technical game developery people might, but to a Joe Gamer it sounds a bit wordy and weird.

 

Not very pretty?  Before I answer that, let me ask you this.  Have you ever played the game sinuous?  If so, are you aware of what made it successful, in spite of it's visual simplicity?

 

Honestly, the flashy lights thingy is something I've seen so many times that it really doesn't appeal to me.  I wanted to do/try something different, like what Kenta Cho does does with his games.

 

I can understand the text bits being too wordy or technical, but I thought "gameplay session" would be self explanatory   Is there a different term you'd prefer?  At that moment, I couldn't think of anything else.

 

>I like the game and the looks, effects etc...

However, I don't like that debugging-like coordinates print on the bottom left.

 

The rules are quite simple, maybe I'd add them to the trailer.

 

Yeah, I'm not going to include that in my actual trailer.  I forgot to disable that before making the recordings.

 

And instead of the first screen of obvious text, I'll find an interesting way of explaining the rules of the game.

 

Thanks for the replies so far.  I really appreciate it.

 

Shogun.

 


Here's something I've learned being in bands. When challenged, it is never a good response to say "Well, X project did it and they made trillions of monies and got all the ladies". You cannot count on one success being repeatable for any reason. You should make it as close to perfect as possible before releasing it. Perfect doesn't always be polished. It could be perfect low budget charm. What that means to you is one thing but what it means to us (whose opinion you asked) is another. 

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blueshogun96    2264

Here's something I've learned being in bands. When challenged, it is never a good response to say "Well, X project did it and they made trillions of monies and got all the ladies". You cannot count on one success being repeatable for any reason. You should make it as close to perfect as possible before releasing it. Perfect doesn't always be polished. It could be perfect low budget charm. What that means to you is one thing but what it means to us (whose opinion you asked) is another. 

 

I do agree with this.  

 

This project didn't come to mind simply because "it worked for one game", I was just trying to say that (okay, this is likely going to piss some people off) it doesn't need to look like your every day, run of the mill, indie game to be successful.  When things start looking typical, to me, my interest fades fast.  Especially with FPS games; haven't played a unique or impressive one since Killzone for PS2.

 

If you don't try something different from the norm, how do you know if it will work?  That's my philosophy.

 

Shogun.

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BladeOfWraith    245

2. I didn't include a release date at the end.
3. I didn't include a link, or mention my website.

This isn't the sort of game to build hype around anyway. Leave that to Halo. I'd say the only time to make a video for distribution to the public is once your game is available for download. 

 

You are correct about adding a link. People are lazy and the number who will click the link you provide is going to be a lot higher than the number who bother to go type "loop-til" into their search bar. If you host your game on your main site, you've accomplished both at the same time. If they follow a link to your game then they're on your site :)

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blueshogun96    2264

2. I didn't include a release date at the end.
3. I didn't include a link, or mention my website.

This isn't the sort of game to build hype around anyway. Leave that to Halo. I'd say the only time to make a video for distribution to the public is once your game is available for download. 

 

You are correct about adding a link. People are lazy and the number who will click the link you provide is going to be a lot higher than the number who bother to go type "loop-til" into their search bar. If you host your game on your main site, you've accomplished both at the same time. If they follow a link to your game then they're on your site smile.png

 

Well, as far as building "hype" goes in my mind, I was thinking it would be a good idea at least build some awareness though a few sites that review these sort of games so that people can at least hear what others have to say.  I try not to underestimate any form of free advertising like word of mouth.  Building hype isn't necessary, but building awareness of some kind would take more than just a [well designed] trailer itself. smile.png

 

And I agree with your last statement too.  The site needs to be ready, either the main website, or a subdomain of your main website dedicated to the game at least (main website is most important though).  smile.png

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blueshogun96    2264

Okay, I'm not sure whether I should create another topic or bump this thread, so I'll take my chances with the latter. Sorry if that was a poor choice...

 

Me and a friend of mine have been discussing a few things about this game, like the best way to market it, what it's worth, etc.

 

So I thought I'd ask all of you, would it be something you'd pay $1.99 on the app store to download, or would you rather see a free version of it and possibly pay for an enhanced/deluxe version using the same engine and more features after playing the free version?  I've never been in the position to sell anything I've coded until now.  Selling for 99 cents is something I prefer to avoid at all costs (tbh, I'd rather make it free then risk falling into the 99 cent "crap" category) unless the game already has a good fan base to the point where people see the name/developer and will gladly/faithfully try it.  The conversation we had started to make me rethink my marketing strategy (at least the sale part of it).

 

Overall, I don't think it's something to stress over since this is more than likely going to be one big learning experience and I should probably be focusing on the bigger projects more as I continue to try to build a good track record.

 

Shogun.

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way2lazy2care    790
I'm not really the typical mobile game player, but I can tell you for certain that I have bought only 1 game that made me pay for it before I could try it. I would definitely release a limited or ad supported free version and a premium version.

If you haven't released your trailer yet, I'd agree that your logo needs polish, and the font on your font slides could probably be changed or made more interesting. Simple is fine, but it's lacking some professional polish that gave the game an amatuer feel it probably doesn't deserve.

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Liuqahs15    819

As for the price: Free, with a paid upgrade.

 

I personally don't agree with the concept of asking people how much they want to pay. When we're having a conversation, and we're talking about imaginary money in an imaginary world where we're just assuming that I'd buy the game, of course I'll name some arbitrary "low" price. But when it's time to whip out my credit card, all of a sudden I might not be as willing to pay, even if it's super cheap. It's better to just price it at what you think it's worth, and then adjust later. The only true way to know how much people will pay is to put it on sale and see. But that's just me.

 

As for the trailer:

 

You spent too long on the opening title screens before it got to the gameplay. I expect to see the game by the time the beat drops in the song, but you were still showing me a big logo screen. It's not horrible, just kind of annoying. But I'm one of those guys that gives a video 5 seconds to "please me" before I close the tab, so I'm not quite the average audience.

 

Also, although I know it probably makes it feel more like a trailer, just cut the marketing speech out. It's nonsense. Saying your game has "Progressive difficulty," or that "Every action affects your gameplay session" is like saying your game was "Written in computer code by REAL programmers!" and features "A pause menu with multiple options!" If you don't have any unique features to tell me about, then let me watch the game.

 

To be honest, just on the subject of building hype for a game in general, I probably would avoid a trailer if it's not full of cutscenes and quicktime events. The better way to get attention would be to find a youtuber who likes playing your kind of game, ask her/him if they're willing to do a let's play of it, and hope they enjoy it. Most of the "indie" games I pick up, I only have interest in them because I saw an unbiased person play them and seem to have a ton of fun. Trailers are for movies and games that wish they were movies.

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blueshogun96    2264

Meh, alright then.  But keep in mind that much of this is a learning experience.

 

 

I'm not really the typical mobile game player, but I can tell you for certain that I have bought only 1 game that made me pay for it before I could try it. I would definitely release a limited or ad supported free version and a premium version.

If you haven't released your trailer yet, I'd agree that your logo needs polish, and the font on your font slides could probably be changed or made more interesting. Simple is fine, but it's lacking some professional polish that gave the game an amatuer feel it probably doesn't deserve.

 
Well, to be frank, I chose the Tahoma font and the plain white background purposely simply because it suits the game's art style and is merely designed to give the game that Windows Metro feel to it.  For any other type of game, I would N-E-V-E-R do this. 
 
As for the icon, some like it, some don't so it's impossible to please just anyone.
 
Given this last bit of information from you guys, I think my strategy is now complete.  Thanks.
 
Shogun.

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cowsarenotevil    3003

The problem with the font isn't that it's simple; the simplicity just draws attention to its flaws. The shape of the letters isn't necessarily bad (although it's not really my favorite), but the kerning and rendering are both quite ugly. Metro fonts don't have these problems which makes it a lot more aesthetically pleasing.

 

But I also have to ask what the text even accomplishes: "Simple but challenging gameplay... and with progressive difficulty" kind of seems like it should be a given for this kind of game (and I don't really think anyone is going to not play it because it doesn't say that). The thing about actions affecting gameplay and the player being in complete control also doesn't really add anything; at worst, it looks like you're just trying to break up the game play footage because you're afraid it's not interesting enough, which could send a bad message.

 

As for the logo, you could probably make a vectorized version quite quickly with the GIMP or something, which would go a long way toward making it look acceptable.

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BladeOfWraith    245

Using something as a bridge between play scenes is certainly needed. If it just shows clips of gameplay for one solid minute with no "resets" it's not as effective. The text breaks serve as a kind of "cool off" period, before the game grabs their attention again.

 

There may be something better than the text cuts, but if the choice is leave the text or just remove it, I would vote to leave it.

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