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Unity Unite Now Live Q&A -Cinemachine: Powerful Camera Tools for Games and Film

Discussion in 'Cinemachine' started by AskCarol, May 8, 2020.

  1. AskCarol

    AskCarol

    Unity Technologies

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    Nov 12, 2019
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    Feel free to post your questions before, after and during the session.


    Unite Now Session

    Cinemachine is a suite of powerful camera modules useful in games and in film. We’ll chat directly with advanced users leveraging Cinemachine in both forms, discuss the future of the product, and then have a live Q&A session with these creators and the Unity Cinemachine team.


    When
    Thu, May 28, 9:00 AM PT


    Where
    You can watch the session here!
    Make sure to sign up to get access to all Unite Now content.


    ______________________


    A team of product experts from across Unity will be available during and after the session. Our Community team will continue to field questions to foster an ongoing discussion with the community. Please feel free to ask your questions in this thread.


    Some basic rules

    • Only questions related to the topics of the session are permitted.


    • All questions will be fielded by our Community Managers (@LeonhardP and @AskCarol)
      • Replies will have to be approved by the moderators to show up in the thread.


      • Once approved, the questions will be forwarded to the relevant experts.

    We really look forward to hearing from the community.

    Thank you!
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2020
    mandisaw likes this.
  2. Livealot

    Livealot

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    For all the new stuff, please share live demos of how to use it. For example, you mentioned Impulse Cam as you showed a teaser video of the result, but no detail on how to take advantage of it.

    I think Cinemachine has a ton of great, but unused, features because there is no content showing how to use any of it. The last video of Cinemachine + Timeline that I can find seems to be 3 years old.
     
  3. marc_tanenbaum

    marc_tanenbaum

    Unity Technologies

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    436
    Hi Livealot! All the examples we showed in the presentation (and more!) are available through the samples we provide via Package Manager. :)
    • Create a project.
    • Install Cinemachine (2.6 in this case) via Package Manager
    • STILL in Package Manager, scroll down and click the Samples button. This will import all the samples into your project.
    You can now see the Impulse feature, along with all the others and examples of how to use them.

    [EDIT] Oh, and I should mention that we are indeed working on some new tutorial content/ [/EDIT]
     
    mandisaw likes this.
  4. Livealot

    Livealot

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    That's great to hear. I'd encourage you to take a look at the videos @peeweekVFX is doing. It's one thing to have a nice, completed example of a bonfire in a repo somewhere. And it's a totally different thing to watch a power user go through the mechanics, choices, trade-offs and nooks and crannies of the interface that you would have never seen by just opening up the completed project.

    For Cinemachine, I was really hoping this Unite livestream was going to be something like that. The feature set and possibilities are so vast, I think you could do a weekly show and not run out of content for a year.
     
    marc_tanenbaum likes this.
  5. sinjinn

    sinjinn

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    I thought this would be more busier. Cinemachine is awesome, and when I say awesome, I mean awesome. I'm just struggling to make content worthy enough to use it.

    I actually did think this was going to be a tutorial of some sort though. Like, I thought that this was a "Lets study together" type of thing. I agree with Livealot. This tool is amazing.
     
    marc_tanenbaum likes this.
  6. marc_tanenbaum

    marc_tanenbaum

    Unity Technologies

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    Thanks @sinjinn!

    We had a lively discussion at the event, but that hasn't translated to as many questions here as I might have expected. I'm glad to hear you're excited by Cinemachine. Make sure you post any questions you have in this forum and we'll do our level best to answer them. And we do have educational content in the works. Always so much to do! Never enough time!
     
    mandisaw likes this.
  7. transat

    transat

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    May 5, 2018
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    Hi. First of all I'd like to say that Cinemachine rocks - it's definitely one of the best features of Unity. I'd even go so far as to say that non Cinemachine cameras should be deprecated.

    Question: I'm setting up a state driven rig at the moment - do the states have to be Animator states or can they be entirely custom-coded ?
     
  8. Gregoryl

    Gregoryl

    Unity Technologies

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    States have to be Animator states in order to use StateDrivenCamera. However, it's quite possible to write a custom vcam switcher that is driven by other input. Can you elaborate a little on what you's like to do?
     
  9. transat

    transat

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    What I'd like is for my custom character states to show up as options in the existing StateDrivenCamera camera rig. Ideally it would be as simple as adding an interface to my states, or something like that. Creating a custom vcam switcher would also work I suppose, though would require a bit more effort for amateur coders such as myself.

    My issue is that I'm not using the Animator to drive my animations. I'm using the excellent MxM Motion Matching from the asset store.
     
  10. Gregoryl

    Gregoryl

    Unity Technologies

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    A custom script that polls your character state and associates vcams with specific states, activating the one corresponding to the current character state, sounds like the right approach.
     
    transat likes this.
  11. mandisaw

    mandisaw

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    People tend to have more questions in the moment, during the talk, than afterwards. Or they have questions/issues way down the line, when working in their project, and don't want to resurrect a necro'd thread.

    But I'm happy to post a question/suggestion we didn't have time for at the Live:

    Cinemachine tends to describe its features in film/TV production terminology (Pan/Tilt, Dolly, Follow, Shot Framing, etc). But game developers, especially indies and/or newcomers, are often not versed in that lingo at all. Gamers think in terms of "First Person" vs "Third Person" vs "Top Down" Cameras (and of course many variants thereof).

    I have a foot in both communities, so I've experienced first-hand that glassed-over look when you speak the wrong lingo at the wrong meetup :oops:

    The mini-tutorials that already exist are still pretty good, but the way search works, you have to use the right terms. Perhaps some kind of "translation table" could be set up with both TV/film & game terms for each common camera technique/effect, pointing to mini-tutorials & corresponding samples/docs.

    For instance, this bit of combat in Breath of the Wild:
    Gamer/GameDev would say: "Third-person, over the shoulder, multiple-target -> single-target"
    TV/Film Camera Op/Produer would say: "Extra Wide-angle & Pan to frame all combatants -> Tighter angle & Follow-cam on Link"
     
    gaborkb likes this.
  12. marc_tanenbaum

    marc_tanenbaum

    Unity Technologies

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    Hi @mandisaw. Thanks for the comment. The only reason I didn't respond more promptly is that you're hitting on something important (and difficult), which I discussed with the team. As you correctly point out, naming is hard, especially when different domains come into play. We've talked a lot about how we can work on naming...maybe even renaming parts of the tool...for the future. But getting that naming to then be queryable in code, in samples, in documentation, etc, in a way that speaks to different audiences is a big task. I guess I can't give you an answer per se, but I can tell you it's something we're thinking a lot about.
     
    mandisaw likes this.
  13. mandisaw

    mandisaw

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    Thanks for the frank response @marc_tanenbaum :) I honestly wouldn't attempt - or even suggest! - renaming the various Cinemachine elements/features. Besides the considerable logistical & SEO challenges, to my mind naming a *cinematic* tool with Film/TV-first terminology is quite appropriate.

    The easier, and IMO "stickier" approach would be to focus on educating Game-centric creators on the terms that describe the visuals they are already familiar with from both games & movies.

    That allows devs to not only better use Cinemachine, but also seek out further information/tutorials that can only make them better at interactive audiovisual storytelling.

    Renaming the CM toolset versus teaching game devs how to speak an increasingly game-adjacent "language" is akin to that "teach a man to fish" adage.

    Thanks for listening - looking forward to whatever the team comes up with.
     
    gaborkb and marc_tanenbaum like this.
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