Somehow, 2018 was even busier than last year. I made 21 trailers for 18 games and in 2018 I made 24 trailers for 21 games!!! This doesn’t even include a trailer I finished, but has not come out because the game was delayed.
Again, I had the opportunity and privilege to work with so many amazing developers, many of whom I worked with for the first time ever, but also a bunch of welcome familiar faces either for new versions of the game or new studios formed from old ones! This year I heard from numerous people my name is mentioned regularly in indie game circles when asking about trailers, so I’m forever grateful for anyone who’s worked with me or had something good to say about me and my work. I seriously could not do it without you!
This year is also the first ever where I did 100% indie work, with no in-office work for trailer houses in Los Angeles!
Some things that I accomplished in 2018 that I'm particularly proud of:
I did my first talk at GDC
I helped make FOUR trailers for E3
I hired friends for their help on a few trailers
I officially formed an LLC via IC Tax Advisors
I took the business bootcamp class at The Futur
I consistently posted my weekly newsletter about trailers, and more than doubled my subscribers
I received comments from people for whom my posts helped them with their trailers
I’m also just happy to have so many faces to catch up with at each show I go to!
1. Subnautica - Launch Trailer
I got this gig via Ryan Clark from Brace Yourself Games which was doubly flattering because I've never worked with Ryan before. This is one of the biggest games I've ever worked on as an individual freelancer. I had some major missteps at the beginning of the project, but it all worked out.
2. Dead Cells - Console Announce Trailer
Motion Twin re-hired me a little last minute to make this trailer for their console release. Dead Cells is so much fun to play, the music is always epic, and they have great debug tools so I couldn't say no.
4. Octogeddon - Launch Trailer
George had a very clear idea for this trailer over a year before the game was finished, so it was up to me to take his vision, and make it nice and shiny.
5. Orwell: Ignorance is Strength - Launch Trailer
This trailer was pretty much put together entirely based on the voiceover. The tricky part was to keep it engaging when the whole game is full of UI and reading. The editing was pretty straightforward since the voiceover was pretty locked down. There were some sections that I removed either because of redundancy or I just didn't think they were relevant to the trailer's narrative.
Picking visuals for this was pretty much just finding moments in the game that matched what was being said on screen as best as possible, and using a lot of zooms and pans to keep the images moving. I did my best to keep shots a short as possible because when there's text on screen and it lingers for anything longer than a moment, I feel like the audience will think they're expected to read it. Whenever possible I kept text to a minimum like during the call surveillance shot.
Originally we started the trailer with the questionnaire that starts the game, but we decided it was slowing things down too much, so we skipped straight to the voiceover. For the majority of the footage I captured at 4K to reduce any blurriness that might occur from upscaling 1080p footage.
6. Way of the Passive Fist - Launch Trailer
I immediately fell in love with this game when I saw it at PlayStation Experience 2017, and handed them a business card in hopes they'd contact me to make a trailer, which I'm happy to say they did! This was one of those rare trailers where the idea for how to make it came to mind almost right away, it was just a matter of executing it.
7. Thimbleweed Park - Ransome DLC
This was just a quick little trailer to make. Ron sent me a lot of footage of Ransome swearing, and some title cards to structure the trailer around. I sorted the swears based on whether Ransome was insulting someone, using "fuck" as an intensifier, saying "fuck you", or using it to describe nouns. I treated it like a supercut, and re-organized the swears in a way that sounded pleasing to me. It'd been a while since I edited any supercuts, so it was fun to play around with.
8. Pode - Teaser
I've been following the development of Pode for a long time, and I got to play it for the first time at The MIX at PAX West 2017. I made it through the entire demo and handed them a business card, and they responded to me! This trailer was pretty simple to execute, but it definitely helped that I had outside forces controlling the scope of it.
9. The Adventure Pals - Launch Trailer
10. The Stillness of the Wind - Announce Trailer
This is another game being published by Surprise Attack Games who I worked with on Orwell: Ignorance is Strength.
The Stillness of the Wind is a full game based on the small game Where the Goats Are which you can play for free on Itch.io. From playing the free Itch.io game I was instantly intrigued by what I could possibly do for the expanded game.
11. Tacoma - PS4 Launch Trailer
This is the third trailer I've made for Tacoma. Making a second or third trailer is always a mix of feelings because being forced to find new ways to tell a story is challenging, but at the same time having constraints can be freeing since you can narrow your focus.
12. The Forgotten City - Announce Trailer
13. Neo Cab - Announce Trailer
14. Bravery Network Online - Announce Trailer
Bravery Network is a turn based online multiplayer game similar to Pokemon being made by Gloam Collective, and published by Untitled Publisher, a new indie game publisher co-created by Chris Dwyer with whom I worked on A Boy and His Blob, and the console release of Gone Home. This also showed at the PC Gaming Show!
15. Ooblets - E3 2018 Trailer
My third trailer for Ooblets, this time feature DANCE BATTLES! You might notice a pattern here, but this also debuted at the PC Gaming Show. That was a busy couple of months O_O
16. The American Dream - Launch Trailer
I got this gig via a referral from Kert Gartner all the way back in April 2017. I talked a lot to the team about some early trailers, but this is the first one I made for them. The American Dream is a VR satirical look at gun culture in America.
17. Dead Cells - Launch Trailer
My final trailer for Dead Cells as they reached version 1.0!
18. Anamorphine - Launch Trailer
19. Morphies Law - Launch Trailer
I got this gig after Cosmoscope saw my GDC talk about game capture! I’d seen this game many years ago, so I recognized it immediately when it came into my inbox. It’s a team based multiplayer game where when you shoot the limbs of other players, the mass of those limbs gets transferred to your own.
20. Guacamelee! 2 - Launch Trailer
The final launch for Guacamelee! 2. A no nonsense, crunchy gameplay trailer.
21. Spelunky 2 - Gameplay Trailer
22. Agent A - Console Announce
23. Subnautica - Console Launch
24. Firewatch - Nintendo Switch Launch
Bonus - Bloodroots Reveal Trailer
This is my first consultation job where I helped take a rough draft, and guide it towards the final project. I didn’t touch a single game build, and no footage ever entered my timeline, but knowing where it started from the first email, I feel good knowing I helped it reach its potential.
Congrats to Raphael Toulouse who I worked with on this trailer!