Total War: Three Kingdoms
Platige Image on creating the cinematic trailer
Platige Image reveals how cinematic trailers for Creative Assembly’s franchise were created
Atrailer for a videogame is a lot like an elevator pitch – you have two minutes to sell the concept to an audience. In many cases, game studios don’t have in-game footage to show off so they have to rely on a third-party to capture what the product is all about.
platige Image is no stranger to this challenge, having worked with many acclaimed studios such as cd projekt red and creative Assembly. for the latter, platige Image produced the announcement for its latest instalment in the Total War franchise: Three Kingdoms, a game based on ancient chinese warfare. project director jakub jabłoński is something of a veteran for this series. “I’ve worked on three movies for the Total War franchise,” he begins. “the trailers and game cinematics I’m working on with the platige
Image team are a whole different sort of animal from your average commercial. the game allows the players to create epic, sweeping battle sequences.”
translating in-game battles into a short video is a tall order but jabłoński took an original approach. “We can portray the world from a different perspective than the god-like, strategic pov in the game. We take the cameras closer to our characters to portray their motivations.”
“My favourite shot is in the opening,” jabłoński says. “over only a couple of seconds we show the beautiful chinese landscape using watercolours and a photorealistic render, a symbolic rendition of the chinese eagle, flaming arrows raining down, and an unexpected army of torches emerging from the darkness.”
of course, the team had to be careful to not deviate from the essence of the game. jabłoński explains that it’s a relationship of compromises with the client: “sometimes platige Image is unable to create something exactly as the client saw it in their mind. other times, the clients make modifications to our work that we are not exactly fond of.”
jabłoński is most enthused at the start of a project. “crafting the story, designing the shots, gathering references and early concept art – this is what I love the most,” he says. However, he goes on to say, “crafting the previs – a version of the film, simplified in terms of visuals and animation, but with the editing and camera direction already locked down – is the most important thing. If the previs is okay, the film will be okay.”
When it comes to tools, the studio uses a variety. “platige Image basically uses all software available on the market,” jabłoński says. “the pipeline is always shaped by the character and requirements of a given project.” this combination of tools and talent makes for a fascinating cinematic – one that demonstrates that over 20 years after its inception, platige Image is at the top of its game.