What's Wrong With Video Game Trailers

I love video game trailers, but I love them for the same reason I love concept work: I see them as entirely separate art forms from an actual video game.

I enjoy them and appreciate them for what they are, not what they're trying to represent. And that generally leaves me a pretty happy guy! If, however, you look to video game trailers to sell you on a game, well...in the past five years you've been shit out of luck.

As this diagram so eloquently explains.

Why I don't care much for teaser trailers [Reddit, via Gamefreaks]


    I'd say the lack of gameplay footage to be a large factor. Or does that fall under pre-rendered cutscenes? If that's the case then that slice should be much larger.

    I'd like to see a pie chart for movie trailers.

    20% - Company Logos
    10% - Fancy Title
    10% - Text labels on a plain background to highlight the voice over for the hearing impaired? or just to waste time..
    40% - Spoilars from the final 15 mins of the film
    10% - The entire plot
    5% - Credits
    5% - "Explodinating soon" or some other text label advertising what the trailer is advertising.

      I'd say it's more like

      25% - funniest moments from the film
      25% - best action moments from the film
      25% - the most important plot moments from the film
      10% - company logos
      10% - black screen with white text + voice over
      5% - coming soon/release date

      Every TV spot for a movie has to have a deep-voiced american dude booming "NOW!"

      Meanwhile I'm sitting in my loungeroom "uhhh now... what?"

    "I love concept work" link is broken.

    Another problem is that we are so sequel driven now that there is really not many good teasers and sequel games dont need any when we know there is going to be one. A teaser for MW3, umm you had to live in a cave the last 3 years not to expect this to happen.

    Also delivery method as well, its not really a teaser when the video is titles XXX game. Another way in that the person posting video doesn't ruined what is meant to be a surprise wouldn't be bad, thats what i guess why teasers in E3 press conferences > any other.

    Trailers are Ok, what I freaking hate is teasers, most of the time you never get what is presented.

    I hate seeing a trailer for a game that has some really awesome weapon, level, or even song that is featured heavily in the trailer and then when the game comes out NONE of that is in the game.

    Kudos to Borderlands for including the awesome song from the trailer in the game as the introduction music.

      Another great example: Assassin's Creed.

      The first game had a CGI trailer that showed Altair using a crossbow for both ranged AND melee attacks. It wasn't in the game to begin with, let alone usable in the fashion prominantly shown in the trailer.

      Years later, Brotherhood comes out and I'm overjoyed at the addition of the crossbow... but I had to wait for the 3rd game in the series :-P

    I reckon a more systematic distinction between "trailer" and "teaser" should be adopted. IMHO, a "teaser" ought to be something that tantalises with a peek at the game itself - it's the thing that includes gameplay footage, sweeping views of in-game environments and maybe a dramatic scripted moment.

    Trailers, like movie trailers, ought to suggest the overall feeling or idea of the work. Many games involve a first-person perspective with guns, but Dead Island is worlds apart from Q3A and that is best shown by a trailer that focusses on the *feeling* of the work. Q3A is flat-out arena action; Dead Island is a desperate struggle for survival. It's hard to show that kind of desperation with mainly gameplay footage, but the infamous Dead Island announcement trailer really set up the feel of the game. I can only hope that the trailer music is an easter egg somewhere in the game...

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