Is it About Time We Did Away with CGI Reveals?

Oct 26, 2017
What's your opinion? Should CGI reveals/trailers go?

People in the Shadow of the Tomb Raider thread aren't happy that we didn't get to see gameplay, but this isn't the first time I've seen that sentiment expressed. I have to admit I was also mildly disappointed as I was expecting a gameplay trailer. CGI reveals do very little for me these days.
Oct 27, 2017
I've been ready to see them go for a while now.

Games look amazing nowadays; why hide them and continue to mislead?
Oct 25, 2017
Yeah. This isn’t even the first reveal, it’s the second CG trailer, I think?

There’s screenshots and the press played it so there’s gameplay to be shown
Dec 22, 2017
It depends on the game. Smash Bros and other fighting games can do partially CGI trailers, because just showing a character is now in the game is big news and exciting. Likewise, if the story is really good, I'll accept a CGI trailer that gives me a tease of it. When Halo or another shooter does a CGI trailer though, it doesn't really get me excited because I don't get any idea of what the game will be like from it.

So really it depends on what it's trying to do. I don't think a lot of them do it for me either.
Oct 25, 2017
Eh, I 100% understand why they exist - early-development footage is unlikely to look great but you want the marketing cycle to start up at a certain time.

But also, they serve a function similar to that of a vertical slice in terms of giving the dev team a sort of aesthetic goal to hype themselves up about and to help crystallize the feel of the project in their heads.
Oct 29, 2017
Tomb Raider's reveal was disappointing because they were building the hype for a month.
CGI trailers dropping out nowhere though = cool
Nov 4, 2017
Yes, the industry needs to start moving away from this.

We could see an hour of CGI and no one would be any the wiser about the actual product we're being asked to buy. It's literally pointless and a total waste of money. Two minutes of genuine gameplay is far more valuable than 10 hours of CGI.
Oct 25, 2017
Its fine when its a trailer. Its stupid if theres gameplay like footage but its CGI. Madden is so bad with that.
Oct 25, 2017
People thinking a CG reveal somehow prevented a finished-looking gameplay reveal from happening are presumably the same people who think HD remasters replaced entire new games from being made.
Oct 25, 2017
This is how I feel about every fucking Death Stranding trailer

Oct 26, 2017
I'd be fine with that. I only really care about gameplay trailers at this point.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider's trailer was zero-hype for me.
Oct 25, 2017
While I agree that gameplay > CGI reveal, the initial reveal is largely aimed at hype and whatever meets that end is what they'll put out. Also a little patience isn't gonna kill people. It's not like we're not going to get gameplay trailers.

New Fang

Oct 27, 2017
Eh, I 100% understand why they exist - early-development footage is unlikely to look great but you want the marketing cycle to start up at a certain time.
IMO that is the first sign you're announcing a game too early. If you can't show anything you best just hold off announcing the damn game.
Oct 27, 2017
No. I like 'em.

The best would be to do it like Blizzard and release a CGI trailer alongside another video showcasing gameplay and features.
Nov 17, 2017
I was just complaining about this too a friend. At the very least make it In Engine so I can see what it'll look like.

10 seconds of in-engine footage will get me more excited than 3 minutes of CG.
Oct 27, 2017
CGI reveals for games that we don't know about yet, or at least aren't entirely sure exist, can be cool. Final Fantasy VII:R, Smash Brothers, Beyond Good and Evil 2, etc.

When we do know about them, it's pointless. The only really value they have is they can be produced earlier in game development and kick off the hype circle in a fun and sometimes surprising way.
Oct 25, 2017
Yeah, they don't do much for me either.

I don't need gameplay, but show me something in-engine (like Kojima Productions, Naughty Dog, DICE). If you can't do that you're announcing it too early.
Oct 27, 2017
Very rarely does a CGI trailer do ANYTHING for me. They have to do something real cool or unique for me to care. Death Stranding is one of those exceptions because I find myself more and more interested with every trailer. That said, I am actually getting a bit of fatigue from them and if the next thing we see isn't gameplay I'll be frustrated.
Oct 27, 2017
As a surprise reveal, they're fine. They do nothing for me personally and I'd certainly prefer gameplay, but I get it.

But when you start with a tease that hypes up a full reveal on a specified date only to show zero actual gameplay, then backlash is deserved, IMO.
Oct 25, 2017
CGI reveals are perfectly fine for announcing a game, establishing tone, and just setting up expectations.

The problem is when these CGI teasers happen years before gameplay is ever shown, meaning they're more of a concept pitch than anything tied down to reality. SotTR is releasing this year and did press demos this week, so it's pretty fair to assume that trailer reflects the final product.
Oct 27, 2017
CGI trailers are great. I'd just say no more than 2 per game before launch unless the game uses full CGI cutscenes.

Overwatch is an exception because they're basically short lore films.

I'd also rather a game have a CGI trailer showing tone and characters than devs showing off gameplay that changes drastically by the time it releases.


Oct 25, 2017
Yup it's a waste of money and a waste of everyone's time. You're not showing anything that's remotely representative of what everyone will be playing, so why bother spending millions on that?
Nov 27, 2017
Showing gameplay is the way to get people hyped, unless of course the gameplay isn’t appealing then you hide it behind cgi.

I was indifferent to the new god of war then I saw that 3 minute gameplay trailer and was sold day 1 yes please I don’t need to see any more just take my money.