Trailer Trash

Has anybody seen this BS3 trailer?

I wouldn’t normally start an entire thread just to criticise something so trivial, especially for a game I’m looking forward to, but who at Revolution thought this would be a good idea? It’s only 1:40 long, with half of it dedicated to logos and animated cutscenes from the first one, before launching into game footage that instantly makes me remember how good it looked before getting the Gabriel Knight treatment - the very first 3D image looking like a reject from Carmageddon. Then, the actual flips between our heroes for a few seconds in a desperate attempt to hide the fact that they’re both running around empty locations in utterly Tomb Raider style (with the most common animaiton being George hoisting himself up onto walls), before finishing with a few random headshots and the title. And all of it is put, not against the orchestral themes of the first, but this utterly forgettable bloopy-bleep music that just screams 'Soundloop Collection #4!" (albeit a little better than the theme to the last ‘Runaway’ video, which they really should have let the singer get her breath back before recording). It has no sense of drama, no sense of humour, it tells me nothing about the story, it doesn’t show me anything cool, and it doesn’t really have anything at all beyond a spot of snazzy character animation. Why?

Why exactly are game trailers so difficult to make work? Gaming has spent the last million years trying to be Hollywood, and I can’t believe that nobody has picked up any of the tricks about marketing. Where is the attempt at character? Where’s the slightest hint of setting the stage, and why the player should care beyond “Hey, look, it’s a load of aliens with guns!” or “Wow! Architecture!” There have been some great ones in the past - Grim Fandango’s springs instantly to mind - but so many of the others, either straight FMV or just non-interactive, have been dire. Why do even still bother downloading these things :-?

I’m constantly appalled at the awful cinematics in games. It seems as if very few people in the industry understand even the most rudimentary aspects of pacing and editing. Maybe all the talented folks get jobs in the film/video biz?

(nods. waves hands)

Yes, I have to

(nods. cross to dungeon entrance)

Agree with

(nods. drops dead in studio. Waits for sound engineer to MacGuyver some clips together)



Well, who doesn’t want to play around with a film/videocamera?