Cutscene Animation via Timeline

You’ve mapped out the previs, you’ve set up your virtual cameras, you’ve compose your shot, and you made dolly tracks for the camera. So all that’s left is to combine all of these steps to create the cutscene you envisioned. However, how can you create the cutscene if the camera stands still? Well, the easiest way is to animate the camera.

Timeline’s your friend

With your scene ready, it’s time to animate the camera (or essentially any game object) using the built-in Timeline.

If the Timeline Window isn’t showing on the current layout, you can open it by going to:

Window -> Sequencing -> Timeline

You’ll Need a Director and a Timeline

Once the Timeline window has opened, select the game object you want the Director component to be attached to. In this example, I’ve created an empty Game Object and renamed it to AnimateCamera.

However, you are not limited to using an empty game object to attach these componenets. For instance, if all of the objects (virtual camera, dolly tracks, models, etc) for the cutscene is a child of a game object, it’s recommended to attach these components on the parent Game Object.

After you’re done creating the Playable file, it will automatically be selected in the Timeline Window.

Time To Animate!

Now, it’s time to create the Animation Track. To achieve this you can:

1) Click on "+" arrow in the upper left hand corner of the Timeline Window -> Animation Trackor2) Right Click in the Timeline Window -> Animation Track

Regardless of how you create it, you’ll end up with a result like this:

Now it’s time to animate the camera.

First, drag the camera onto the Animation track you’ve just created. Next, if there’s no Animator on your camera, select the Create Animator option.

With an Animator attached to the camera, the result will look similar to this.

Finally, press the Red button to start recording. Now you can start modifying the time and position to where you would want the game object to be. Unity will generate keyframes at these spots for you. Once you’re done, press the Red button to stop Recording.

Before creating keyframes
After creating Keyframes

The Final Product