Since it took us 18 months to make Toki Tori 2, we really wanted to do something special for its launch trailer. In the end, it lasts only 1 minute and 40 seconds, but making it took us at least 500 times as long. In this blog we want to give you an insight into how the trailer was made.
So far, we’d gone for ‘simple’ trailers, showing Toki Tori 2’s gameplay with some of the game’s features overlayed. But we wondered whether these videos truly conveyed what the game was about to a general audience. Did they put enough emphasis on core elements like the ‘whistle and stomp’ puzzle mechanic, the unique creatures, the black ooze narrative and the somewhat silly nature of Toki Tori himself? We thought: what if we use a voice-over to explain these concepts?
The concept of the trailer came quite quickly. We were inspired by the well-known Hollywood tradition of trailers in which a bombastic voice pulls you into ‘the world’ of a film, as Jerry Seinfeld parodied in his The Comedian trailer. We wanted to riff off that meme. However we wanted to do it with a more soothing voice similar to wildlife documentaries, considering that the world of Toki Tori 2 is something of an ecosystem itself. After a few brainstorm sessions, in which many random ideas were thrown around, Niels wrote the script for the trailer. This was then tweaked endlessly, until everyone was happy.
With the script ready, it was time to choose a voice-over. The audio gurus at SonicPicnic sent us a few samples, and after a listening session we decided to go for Tim Gunther. He had so many different accents and approaches in his portfolio, that we were convinced he could do the job. So on February 19th, Niels and I headed to the recording studio to meet with our voice-over guy and sound technicians. Let’s watch some of the recording sessions we did that day:
The game footage
The final step was shooting the video material for the trailer. Because we had the script and voice-over track to guide us, we thought it would be an easy job. But oh boy, were we wrong! The first minute of the trailer took ages to complete: we had to build a stand-alone level in Toki Tori 2, in which we had to make sure that the timing of events and camera movement were in sync with the sound. Check out this picture of the timeline for the trailer’s first minute:
Luckily, the second part of the trailer was a lot easier… compared to the first part we’d say it was a piece of cake!
Although Jay and I worked really hard to deliver the trailer to SonicPicnic in time, it turned into a last minute job. On April 4th, the day on which Toki Tori 2 was released on the eShop, SonicPicnic was still busy finalizing the trailer’s audio and music. But luckily those guys are true professionals, and by the time night fell and we held our launch party, the trailer was finished… and it sounded excellent. A big thumbs up to them!
We are pretty sure many of you already watched the Toki Tori 2 Wii U launch trailer, but in case you’ve missed it, here it is once more. We think it turned out pretty well; it explains the game’s basics in an accessible way, and it even made us chuckle. How do you feel about the trailer?