This request came in with very little lead time to finish it, but I couldn't say no because I love playing Dead Cells, the music is always epic, and the debug tools make capture very easy.
This trailer had less direction since I wasn't showing any particular new levels, enemies, weapons or bosses in the game. So instead I just went for variety. I took stock of the enemies I didn't show in the previous trailer I cut, the weapons with unique animations, magic and levels, and then started playing to find some good moments that I could then refine into shots.
With gameplay trailers where I don't focus on narrative I tend to stick to my style of matching gameplay to the music beats because it's what I find most fun to watch. Just try tapping your fingers to the beat to see the parts of the music that I did my best to sync up to. For the most part I synced it by playing at a certain speed, but occasionally I flub the sound effects like when the player is kicking the Beholder at 0:28.
The opening before the music kicks in took some finessing before I got it right. Initially it was pretty bland with just a lot of running and traversal. When I know that the music is leading to somewhere, my first tendency is to cut slow so that it makes a big impact when the music kicks in. But the team wasn't feeling my intro, so I spiced it up with some quick cuts, close ups and white flashes.
Most everything else was me trying to Mickey Mouse the combat to the music and show variety. For example, the shot of running up to using the lightning is meant to mimic the music kicking in. That shot took several takes because the enemies were running back and forth, and I really wanted to kill them all in one bolt. Sometimes I would get one or two, but the third would be too far away etc.
The shot of using the shovel was a happy accident because the higher level shovel shot off a bomb that went into an enemy that happened to be nearby. The grapple hook ends up doing nothing, but I was happy enough with the shot that I kept it in.
Fighting the axe throwing enemy took a LOT of takes because I wanted it to look super smooth where I attacked and killed it, then dodged the axe. Initially I tried jumping over it at the end, but later realized that rolling was faster. This might be too quick for people to realize how smooth it was, but I'll know what went into it ;)
For a lot of the shots I had to fine tune how much damage I inflicted on enemies because I wanted to kill them with a very specific amount of hits. The wall jumping shot took a lot of takes because I wanted to jump at a specific speed, and kill the enemy as soon as I got to the top.
This was a pretty quick trailer to cut, but it was a lot of fun. I can't wait to have Dead Cells on my Switch!