Cutscenes — Part2: Timeline Introduction

Objective: learn about Timeline features and how to make cinematic cuts blending more virtual cameras

Now that we have the 2 vcams, we need work with Timeline, setting a series of events that involve the cameras, such as passing the view (pan the cameras) from one to another. First of all let’s make everything more organised by putting all cutscene object into an empty parent.

Then, we’re going to access Timeline view, which is something very similar to the Animation one. Make sure the Timeline package is already installed.

It is very useful to rearrange the layout in order to have the Timeline on the bottom, and scene and game view side by side.

Let’s start, the editor already suggests to create a timeline. To do so, click on the cutscene parent and then “Create” in Timeline. The parent gets a new Playable Director component.

See? Very similar to Animation tab. What we want to do is to give time to each vcam and manage them. This is done through the CinemachineBrain, so let’s drag the whole Main camera object in timeline. A dropdown will appear and “Add Cinemachine Track” is to be chosen.

Before continuing, let’s turn from frames to seconds.

Now we have a timeline, in seconds. With a right click on it we can add a Cinemachine Shot. In the inspector we can set when it has to start and end, let’s say 0 and 2.5s, so a 2.5s long shot. You can also use your mouse to drag the shot and resize it, right in timeline.

It also ask for a vcam, let’s feed it the OTS one. Once you do it, it allows to manipulate vcam settings such as dead zone etc. Let’s do exactly the same with the other vcam.

If we try and play it, what we get is a 2.5s long shot of the first camera, an abrupt cut to second one, 2.5s long shot of this one and then back to main camera.

Not so cool. But the solution is extraordinarily easy!! If you drag the second shot ONTO the first one, you can blend them and choose how long should be the blending and when it starts.

NOW you can call it cool! But let’s go back to the default abrupt cut and proceed with order.

In timeline let’s add a new Animation Track. Since the parent object doesn't have an animator it appears empty. Let’s provide it the Actors animator component, then from the dots menu we can add the animation clip “GetCardAnimation”.

It appears to be longer than the 2 shots, 6s vs 5s.

Readjust the length of the shots, and see ya in the next tutorial!

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