BLaHiTiS' MediaTracker Tutorial v0.9 (english version)

Update: Sunrise Beta Demo 1 changes!


For the people who tested the alpha, There are a few small changes found in the Media tracker that I would like to document here...
- I removed trigger hopping from page 2.
- Camera positions AND configuration (anchors, targets etc) will now be remembered when you have selected a start or an end key on a track type block. No longer the need to add double keys.
- the "activate track types" button (movie reel/scizors) is gone. You are now in direct control of the camera when you enter the tracker
- the "intro" editing is now possible. There is no ability to set triggers there, as the trigger is in fact the moment when a map is loaded just befor a race is going to begin

All the rest in this tutorial will be adapted but the changes in the 1.3.9 version of sunrise are limited but welcomed. A final tutorial will be made (with updated pictures) when the full game is in sight and no further changes are being made for the media tracker

*** DISCLAIMER (or then again maybe not :) ***

The tutorial is provided "as is". This means that the text in this tutorial is based on my interpretation and is written in my own words. I'd like to keep it updated as much as possible. The lessons provided are produced according to how I view the mediatracker function of TrackMania: Sunrise. When you can't understand portions of the lessons, I might add some more info to shed some light on the matter. (if I know it myself :) ) What I provide here is info to get you hooked to the operations and ways to manage the MediaTracker. It might occur that new versions of sunrise utilize new MediaTracker tools or new ways of working with it. If the tutorial has obsolete information I'm sorry for that and I'll try to update the according info.

*** INTRODUCTION ***

Have you ever worked with programs like Steinberg cubase ? Adobe Premiere or ulead mediastudio to make your audio and videopresentations ? Well, Nadeo (revolutionizing people as they are) have now integrated such a concept right into the new TrackMania: Sunrise as MediaTracker!

The concept is that you have a multitrack timeline where different clips and blocks can trigger various events. These events can be anything like, camera positions, efects, text cues or sonic cues. The events take place on your racing map (ofcourse , not in your coffee machine :P as this is TrackMania ...)

First, I just want to describe the way you have to think about the mediatracker that it is your movie director for your map or replay.

You can fully integrate action sequences within the track editor's subcategory: MediaTracker!

For the replays editing like you used to do in trackmania: original, there's a skinned down media editor when you select to edit your replays in the replay menu.

Let's get to work!

We will review the integrated map editing portion of the mediatracker, wich is ofcourse the most extended of the 2.

This is a tutorial to make you aqquainted with the manner you work with the mediatracker.
I'm gonna show you a video of a finished work that has been produced by the mediatracker, I'm driving on the map. This video shows one of my maps that I "mediatracked" for this occasion. The video shows you 2 texts that are shown "ingame" (that is, while you drive). Each of these texts are triggered on a certain location on the map. One text is shown right befor you are about to jump on the ramp. The next is shown when you land and start driving again.

mt-tut01.wmv

Befor I explain how we're going to make these effects happen on the map, start the "track editor" and press the camera icon in the interface!



Then, choose to edit the "ingame" portion of the map (the moments that you actually race)



How do we make the effects from the movie ?
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We are going directly to our objective, wich is the ramp that we want our text for.



Now, here is something I must first explain. The editor is made in such a way that you need clips in order to produce context. These are the clips that I spoke of in the introduction. The ones that can contain text , effects or sounds. We are first going to make a clip by clicking on the ilustrated button!



Because you want to keep track on things that you do, we're going to name our first clip Razz Click on the text of the clipname and then press enter when done.



Next, you have to proceed in this order:

1. Select the clip (you need to touch the area of the clip bar where there is NO text, otherwise you'll start renaming it again.
2. press the "edit trigger" icon as illustrated below. A trigger in MediaTracker is a sort of sensor that will activate a clip when you drive over it, so you can place a trigger at a section of road that you want as a start for your event.
3. Notice that there is a cyan square visible on the map on the right. You need to just move your mouse to the desired place where you want your clip to trigger. This will then be the place where your clip will activate on the map. Befor you click to confirm, you need to think in 3d. Your mousewheel actually brings this cyan trigger cursor up and down and this will allow you to place it directly on the road befor the ramp as illustrated! Click to confirm and the trigger wireframe will become a box!



Always take care that your trigger position is inside the block that you want to have as a trigger point, not below or above it. otherwise the editor wont accept your selection and act moody and place you at the start line. You could easily do wrong stuff and get lost when misclicking at this point as you appearently can add multiple triggers



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In the next step we are going to select a track type for the clip. (I want to convey to you already that each track type is going to have its own "track" in the general mediatracker timeline, for a clip. so you can use multiple types within one clip.. I just want to tell this already so you are prepared.) For now, follow the instructions of the following illustration:



Select the "text" track type !



You will now see a new track type added to the type list on the right of the clip list.
Now follow the procedure, illustrated in the following screen. THe idea of the "track type: track" is that it is filled up with blocks. (those are ofcourse not the building blocks that you make a map with to race on, but they are "time/key blocks" that regulate the actual events of the type that you have selected. in this case, the text. (don't look too hard at the list of features at the top left. I'll explain this later.



A bit more about this type of block: A block is a devoted passage of time within a track type which marks the beginning and the end of a track type event within the clip. . As you have learned, a track type can be text, sound, effects or camera motion. The block determines how long the event that you want to program will last. To that end it uses "key frames". A "text type block" consists of at least 2 key freams but but can be more , but we'll indulge on that in a later time. You have the needed keyframes to produce the text, so no further info is required at this time.

In the next small image you see the illustration of a block. You see the 2 squares (the key frames). One is white, that means that I have selected it, the other is yellow so it exists but it is not selected.



Selected key frames (click on them) will actually show some settings that are directly related to the track type that you want to produce on your map. In this case it will be text related. Click on the first key frame in the block and a group of settings will become available for you to set! (upper left corner of the screen)

- block start time: the event timing that you want your text (or other type if you're in another situation) to start becoming visible. NOTE: this timing does not have anything to do with race time, itt's an independent event timing for the block. It just has to be set to absolute zero, for the text that we are wanting to view, to appear when the clip is activated by the trigger (as you have learned already)
- block end time:. This is the time you have to set as duration. Your block sequence will last as long as you set inside this parameter. THe standard vallue you see here is 3 seconds.
- Track Text: Type here the text you want the clip to show. WHen you press enter after inputting it, it will become visible on your screen!
- Position parameters PosX , Posy: THese values can be manually set to determine the position of your text onscreen. BUt you can actually do this in a much easier manner by starting to drag the text around
- ROT: Rotate your text
- scaleY and scaleX:Make your characters bigger in width and in hight
- opacity: Slide left to make the text invisibly transparent, set to half to make it translucent etc..

I tell you all these settings so you can memorize them, but you do not really need them at this time except the 'TrackText" feature. Enter your track text (Goin' Up, or well.. something else if you wish) and press enter. Your text will now become visible within the screen.


Now, let the editor show you your first magic. by clicking the preview clipgroup icon. Your author medal replay will start driving and you will notice the text you sucessfully programmed!
(in betademo1, the camera picture of the preview button has changed to an arrow). Updated pics coming with full version.


This is it for the first part of the tutorial... click:

Page 2