2010 Subaru Legacy

Firstly, I have to thank Tribal DDB Toronto for the opportunity to work on this project. Their timely assignment firmly planted me in my new freelance role.

Welcome to the 2010 Subaru Legacy

This project had some challenges. Not the least of which was the fact that when I was pitched it, the art director (the effervescent Missy Kelley) involved said they wanted PaperVision 3D. Although I took a workshop on PV3D with the inimitable John Grden, I can honestly say I still know next to nothing about how to implement this powerful class set. It’s embarrassing to admit but I’ll live.

At any rate, here comes the fun part; all the cool stuff I put to use. Either new to me or a finessing of things I already know.

Starting the audio experience

1. Audio triggering. I used flv video (f4v, actually) for the audio. The audio is in binaural format. Meaning if you happen to be wearing headphones, the audio will wrap your head in true surround sound. It’s wicked cool. They want the image sets to appear based off timing in the audio. eg. the narrator is talking about the radio, the radio image ought to be front and center and the set that image is in ought to be the focus. To accomplish this, I used XML and a type of closed captioning. When using closed captioning, you can either set an event within the audio export or you can use XML with timecodes in it and look for these. I opted for the latter. A. because I couldn’t be sure the audio wasn’t going to change and I didn’t want to have to input all the new events in the audio. B. because I’m really familiar with XML.

No PaperVision 3D? No problem. Sort of.

2. Fake 3D. Since I didn’t know PV3D, I could use the 2.5D implemented in Flash 10 to allow for skewing and perspective. Therefore, when placing the images in their sets, I’d use a center point (locally, the 0,0 of the set) and randomly place the images around that point. Their distance from the center dictated the amount of perspective they would have. When that image becomes focused it swaps it’s perspective on the vertical axis. It’s a fairly good effect and easily set up.

Highlighting a feature.

3. Call outs. Now, having worked with auto minisites for pretty much my entire career, I know the four pinnacles of the industry; power, performance, comfort, safety. It never changes. Call it what you will, but those things are paramount. I think you can probably add cost in there now, but whatev. I used the image sets and XML to control callouts. If the callout existed (in the XML of an image) it popped open when that image was the focus.

4. swfObject loading issues. I blogged about this. Suffice it to say, thanks to Chris Pelsor and Stacey Mulcahy, this got sorted out.

Soundboard with downloadable MP3s

5. Downloading of files. There is a soundboard in this piece and the request to be able to download the MP3s came from on high. I’d never done that before, but it was fun to make happen.

En francais, s’il vous plait.

6. Localization. The request from a Canadian client was of course that this needed to be in french and english. I wanted to be able to easily access this portion by simply swapping a variable. eg. ?lang=fr (see french in action)

So that’s Subaru Legacy in a nutshell. I’m pretty proud of this piece. Thanks again to the crew at Tribal DDB Toronto for the opportunity!

That’s all she wrote

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