The trailer for the IL-2’s ‘Ice Ring’ campaign is out

The trailer for the IL-2 Scripted Campaign ‘Ice Ring’ is now out showing off 2-minutes of cinematic gameplay for the upcoming campaign. In this case this news post feels a bit self serving as this trailer is something that I put together with 1CGS mission maker BlackSix and lead producer Jason Williams. Here’s a little behind the scenes on this project as well as a reminder on the ‘Ice Ring’ campaign itself.

Cinematic campaign trailer

‘Ice Ring’ by BlackSix is the next IL-2 Scripted Campaign to come from the 1CGS team. In this case the story picks up as the player joins a specially formed IL-2 regiment that is tasked with reconnaissance and enemy air transport interceptions. This follow on campaign to the earlier Blazing Steppe and Fortress on the Volgan campaigns helps complete the summer, autumn and winter time periods of the Stalingrad campaign telling the story from the siege of the city to the destruction of the German army at Stalingrad.

And now I’m pleased to present the ‘Ice Ring’ trailer.

I’ve also had a chance now to play through the whole campaign while putting together the trailer for it and so once it is out I will have an available review. Of course working on the cinematic trailer does make this project a little closer to my own heart – if you will – but I will do my best to tell you what it’s about and help provide you with the details you need to decide if you want to buy it. If you’re already ready to go you can pre-order for $9.99 on the webstore.

Behind the scenes of trailer making

I’ve done a number of cinematics for IL-2 over the last few years. Most of those were for fun but more recently I’ve started to work with Jason Williams and many of the Scripted Campaign authors. Most recently, I did the Achtung Spitfire! campaign trailer as well as Fortress on the Volga, Blazing Steppe, and Ten Days of Autumn.

I’ve learned a lot from other IL-2 cinematic campaign makers and those from other game and simulations. Some of the incredible work in the DCS World arena has also influenced me. I’ve also turned to TV shows and movies for everything from pacing to getting the camera movements right. Doing that in a simulation engine with its own quirks and limitations of course is a challenge too although one that is also part of the art form.

To help me along I have recently switched to using Davinci Resolve 16 for my video editing and rendering and I make use of software like Audacity when I need to adjust audio – although Resolve 16’s audio editing is also quite useful. Then when it comes to recording I use nVidia Shadowplay which, after some struggles, I’ve managed to get it recording IL-2 scenes without any glitches or pauses. Even the slightest pause will throw off a shot so watching for those is a challenge.

One of the editing timelines for this trailer

Creating a trailer for IL-2 is also performative – you have to play it and make it look good. I usually try and approach it without a specific performance in mind but rather just fly the mission as it should be flown. On occasion I’ll put on a bit of a show which can be interesting too.

Music for trailers like these need to be licensed (and royalty free) and there are several sources I tend to go to for these types of projects including AudioJungle, Shockwave Sound, and various other smaller sites.

Creating the trailer for Ice Ring went fairly smoothly and I ended up recording only 163 different clips to ultimately bring together the 2-minute trailer. Not all of those are in there. Most of them get thrown away and often you’ll redo the same clip over and over until its just “right” and you can move on. Other trailer projects have sometimes required many more clips until it finally comes together. It’s a painstaking process and one that I feel I’m getting a little bit better at each time but that I also still want to improve on.

I hope you enjoyed the trailer, I hope you enjoyed this little behind the scenes look at trailer making, and if you like single player Scripted Campaigns for IL-2, I hope you give ‘Ice Ring’ a look. I’ll say more about that after the campaign is out and my full review is ready!

8 Comments Add yours

  1. clannk says:

    very nice work! congrats!

    it takes me long enough just to get a screen shot i like, let alone 1000x more work on a trailer 😉

    Of the 3, i’d pick the Spitfire one as my favorite (and nothing to do with the plane itself).

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oyster says:

    Great work as always, I think ICE RING is the most representative piece of the Battle of Starlingrad, smashing the hope of German breakthrough.


  3. Blue 5 says:

    Congratulations on your effort, looks fantastic!

    I might buy this to support the team but not sure that I would play it as:
    – It’s high 20s here and my body would get too confused
    – Shooting up Ju-52s makes me feel bad

    Liked by 2 people

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      Pushing into the low to mid 30c range here right now! It is a bit confusing but then again, playing ‘Ice Ring’ is like sipping on a glass of water with ice cubes in it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Mischiew Rithe says:

      Haha, indeed, I prefer to keep this for Winter, no need to heat up the house even more.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Mischiew Rithe says:

    Do I understand correctly from what you wrote that the campaign authors or Jason don’t give any guidelines to follow or ideas that they’d like you to transcribe into the trailer? Or does it depend from one trailer to the next? (I hope I’m not giving them any idea, haha).

    When they see (perhaps) a first draft, aren’t they tempted to say, “Oh, can you make that more dramatic?” or “can we see a scene where this plane does that?” and iterate with you?

    The last one I saw on Bodenplatte looks like 1CGS could have said, “it’d be nice to see a quick intro for each iconic aircraft of that particular period” 😉 They all have a slightly similar – and successful!, … “rythm”? Except maybe that last one which is a bit more complex by nature.

    The music must be challenging too, with the licencing limitations. There are tons of them that would spring to mind for a specific effect, but which would cost a lot because they’re very commercial.

    Thanks for the behind-the-scene article, that’s very interesting!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ShamrockOneFive says:

      Hey Mischiew,

      Great questions! Everyone I’ve worked with has given me guidelines or we’ve sat down and creatively worked through what they want to see – as an artist who does video work in other areas, that’s pretty typical and it’s usually good if its a collaborative process.

      Usually they don’t give me too specific a direction which is also a good thing. But they will tell me they want to showcase certain things more or less and I’ll respond to that.

      Music is challenging. There’s a lot of mediocre stuff and it can be hard to find the good ones that also fit the vision for the trailer. I’ve avoided a few really good ones that have some nice electric guitar for example because it just (to me) doesn’t fit the WWI/WWII esthetic.

      I keep learning and I keep getting a bit better (I hope). Someone said they like HH Paulk’s trailers better which is fine of course. I think he does a fantastic job as well and will always take notes.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Mischiew Rithe says:

        Thanks for explanining 🙂

        I know some people prefer not to have guidelines, they present their work and may change tiny bits. But if I needed a video to promote something, I’d like that kind of early interaction, for sure.

        Yep, normally we listen to music we like, then we know what to pick up for such or such occasion, as long as it’s private (a party or whatever). I was imagining you, forced to listen as much as possible to “free music” – which may be good but probably poor on average, just to build your database. Sounds like a punishment. I guess it’s the matter of finding a few good authors and digging into their work.

        Well, it’s still possible to use non-free music and pay taxes (that’s how it works in my country, not sure how it is internationally on Youtube). It’s probably more expensive but may have a bigger impact. The trick is to find a match with the WWII theme, it would be easier for the jet era (electric guitar would do!).

        Trailers are good, they could include cut scene videos within campaigns, one day. I was a bit disappointed when I saw nothing special in Bodenplatte the day of the famous German offensive, for example (except the newspaper). It would be right up your alley 😉

        Liked by 2 people

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