McMystery Mansion Trailer

December 2, 2021 By Mason

This is it. The last component of my final project. A short trailer for my choose your own adventure game.

Like with my silent film trailer, I composed my own original music for this project. I started with a simple hi hat beat and layered a bass, saxophone, and clarinet on top to make a jazzy, noire style track. After that, I imported the music into Audacity, where I recorded and arranged my narration on top.

Like with several of my other video projects, I asked one of my friends to act in it. To create a sense of atmosphere with the lighting, we waited until it was dark out, turned off the lights, and used his phone’s flashlight to make it appear as though the laptop screen was illuminating his face. I asked him to make a few reactions, got some footage from different angles, and thanked him for helping me.

After this, I recorded some footage of the game. I recorded myself playing some of the game, making sure to move my cursor purposefully. Then, I uploaded both videos to IMovie and began cutting them together with the audio. Since I did not want the screen to feel static on the portions with game footage, I decided to use a tool that had previously been the bane of my existence, the Ken Burns effect.

The Ken Burns effect is a tool in IMovie that slowly zooms in on a clip. It is the default crop setting for any uploaded image. This meant that, when I uploaded the title cards used in some of my other projects (which was frequent) I needed to individually turn off the effect for each one. For this project, I took advantage of it by having it follow the cursor during the gameplay clips. This helped maintain a sense of activity even when the screen was static.

Towards the end, of the trailer, I use three sequential reaction shots of my friend. To mask the slightly different camera angles and distinguish the clips from the rest of the trailer, I turned on auto-stabilization. This helped give those shots a slightly different energy as the trailer reached its conclusion.

I ended the trailer with an image showing the game’s subtitle that I designed entirely in Procreate. This includes the background, which was made using a “stonework” brush. The last thing I did was apply a black and white filter to every clip.