Lining up Audio & Visual to build cutscenes in unity

Over the week I’ve been discovering just how easy it is to ‘direct’ in Unity and to create cuts, pans, and dollyshots for our cutscenes. In the current cutscene I’m working on now, we finally get to add audio and we need to align our scene to it. Here’s a short description of how it was done:

This is my current intro cutscene. All of the camera shots are animated and cuts and pans are done. There needed to be a bit of preparatory work before adding audio to the cutscene:

Create an empty called “Audio” to hold the audio elements, then two more emptys inside of that one called VO or VoiceOver and Music. ‘zero’ all of them out by basically choosing each one and clicking on reset so all of them show 0 on all axis’s and rotations.

Next, we selected both the Music and VO empties and added an Audio Source component to them.

Of course we’ll put the Audio component into the Cutscene element for organizational purposes.

Next in the main cutscene timeline, we add two audio tracks and drag the voice and music empties into it. We’ll also create an Audio group for organization.

Finally drag the cutscene dialogue and music into their appropriate tracks in the timeline.

In older versions of unity, you couldn’t scrape through the audio, you had to play the scene, and thankfully be able to make edits while the scene was playing. Newer versions of unity do allow you to press the spacebar to listen to the audio and view the timeline.

Next it’s just a simple process of aligning the shots to the audio. In this example, the camera doesn’t cut to Darrel Soon enough when he says “Oliver, I’m here” so a little bit of editing is needed. In the video below, I just drag the line from one camera shot in a little bit and then match the next camerashot to it so it’s a clean cut.

And that’s really all there is to it! It’s easy in Unity to get very professional results that used to be only in the domain of AAA companies!

cartoonist, game artist, and wanabe gamedev.