My journey becoming a Unity game developer: Beginning Cutscene-Final virtual cameras animated and blended together

Objective: Animate the final 4 virtual cameras in the Beginning Cutscene, including the use of the blending technique.

Final shots of 4 virtual cameras animated.

With the next two shots the Director wants the 1st virtual camera to show the sleeping guard at the desk, and the 2nd virtual camera to zoom in on the security card with Oliver telling Darren that there is a chance for him to get inside the vault.

First, attach the Sleeping Guard and Security Card virtual cameras in the Cinemachine Track. Second, with the Intro Cutscene game object selected, create 2 Animation Tracks for each virtual camera game object.

Sleeping Guard and Security Card added in Cinemachine Track and Animation Track.

Third, select Sleeping Guard animation track, move the Timeline pointer to the beginning of the camera’s duration shot, and press REC to animate the camera. For the 1st keyframe we will select the Sleeping Guard game object, and move the camera slightly forward to create the keyframe. Then move the pointer to the end of the duration, and move the camera forward in front of the desk and slightly above the desk to see the security guard more clearly to create the 2nd keyframe.

Sleeping Guard virtual camera animated.

Fourth, in the Cinemachine Track timeline we will move the Security Card virtual camera into the Sleeping Guard virtual camera to create a blending animation between the two virtual cameras.

The Security Card virtual camera is focused on the guard’s card itself through the Look At setting under Cinemachine Virtual Camera component. Looking at the camera’s view, the security guard has been cutoff too much. Therefore, we will click on the Security Card game object, then click on the Solo button which will allow us to see the camera’s view from the position set. Adjust the camera to be above the security guard looking down on the card which will prevent the camera’s animation from going through the desk to see the card. Click on the Intro Cutscene object, and press the Play button in the Timeline editor to see how the animation plays between the Sleeping Guard to the Security Card.

Security Card virtual camera adjusted and animated.

When we play the virtual cameras animations, we will see the Sleeping Guard camera blend right in with the Security Guard camera. If the blended animation moves too quick from one into the other, adjust the blend by pushing the Security Card camera further into the Sleeping Guard camera.

Sleeping Guard virtual camera animation blended with Security Card camera.

The Director wants us to show the Vault where Darren needs to go after taking the security guard’s card. Also, show Darren still hiding telling Oliver that this isn’t his first time being in this type of situation.

Fifth, animate the Vault virtual camera by blending it into the Security Card virtual camera inside of the Cinemachine Track timeline.

Sleeping Guard, Security Card, and Vault virtual cameras blended together.

Last, attach Darren End virtual camera to the Vault virtual camera in the Cinemachine Track timeline. Since the Darren End camera will remain as a static shot, we can play the animation as is to see how it looks. Looking at the animation, we see Darren gets cutoff in the picture.

Darren End virtual camera animated, but shot is not aligned properly.

Click on the Darren End game object, click on the Solo button to see the camera’s view, and adjust the camera to see Darren according to the storyboard notes. We can also adjust the duration of the virtual camera’s shot to match how long we think the characters need to say their lines by detaching the virtual cameras. Then, dragging the duration’s endpoint to the position in the timeline we think they need for their dialogue. Afterward, reattach the virtual cameras back the way they were before.

Darren End virtual camera adjusted, aligned, and animated.

Next time we can add a voice over track to the cutscene.

Learning to become a Unity game developer.