Masahiro Sakurai: Get to the Game in Video Game Trailers
Masahiro Sakurai, the renowned game director and designer responsible for the beloved Super Smash Bros. and Kirby series, recently shared his views on what makes an effective video game trailer. His verdict? “Get to the actual game as soon as possible.”
In a new video on his YouTube channel, ‘Masahiro Sakurai on Creating Games,’ Sakurai cautioned against trailers that take too long to showcase the game, emphasizing the importance of displaying actual in-game footage.
“Sometimes, the trailer has an opening movie or character intros that just keep going, and it takes forever to get to the part where they show actual gameplay,” he remarked. “In some cases, trailers like the ones seen on a game’s Steam page won’t show any gameplay footage at all. Please don’t do that! And please, get to the actual game as soon as possible!”
Expanding on this, Sakurai mentioned that he’s “almost developed a habit of skipping the start of most trailers entirely” due to the amount of lengthy introductions and logos that often precede the gameplay.
He acknowledged that well-established series might be able to get away with omitting in-game footage from their trailers, but urged those working on new IP or indie games to dive straight into the action. “We can learn about the story and the game’s world later. […] Just hurry up and show what makes your game appealing,” he added.
This sentiment resonates with many in the gaming community. While there are exceptions, there’s often greater excitement around a game’s first in-game footage rather than the initial CGI teasers.
Want to keep up with the rest of the year’s game releases? Be sure to check out our roundup of upcoming games, as well as our list of upcoming Switch games, to see what’s on the horizon.