Interactive "Simulation" Video

I am looking to create a scenario-based simulation using video (think, Sim-writer). 

Is it possible to set a variable to change once the playhead passes a certain point in the timeline?

Is it possible to jump to specific points within a video file? For example...

The playhead reaches 10 seconds and I chase a variable value from true to false. I set an action to pause the video and show a layer with buttons on it for the user. Based on what button the user clicks, the playhead jumps to a specific point on the timeline.

Directions to instructions is fine. This is my second time using Storyline.

4 Replies
Steve Flowers

You can set a variable to change once the playhead passes a certain point on the timeline if the video is set on the base timeline and synced. I usually do this with an off stage shape that contains a trigger. Couple of considerations:

  • You can run a video inside a player with its own play controls, this wouldn't sync well.
  • If you don't block the video, clicking on it will cause the video to pause or play and it would lose sync. I use a hotspot to block.

You can't jump to specific points in the video, unfortunately. However, you could break up your video and display in layers. Example:

A span of video displays in the base timeline. At the end of the timeline, an object appears with some interaction cues and buttons. If they pick button 1, a video appears in a layer that picks up where the first video left off. If they pick button 2, a different layer shows to play a different pickup point with a new video. 

In my last job, we built some branched video that was intended for facilitated use. If the facilitator pressed the up arrow key, a more intense video would play at the breakpoint. They could select up or down at any time and it would seamlessly (mostly seamlessly) jump to the second part of the video when the first part finished. Pretty easy to set this up. 

We limited the number of branches to prevent having to get too crazy with video edits. 

Steve Flowers

Hey Rusty - 

I'd use a shape on the timeline to contain a trigger to change the value of a variable when the timeline of that object starts. On most slides, I add in a bunch of off-slide shapes. Sometimes I'll label or number these. 

Cool stuff you can do with shapes off the stage. It's sort of like adding a function to a keyframe in Flash if you're familiar with that workflow. You can also add a stack of triggers to a hidden object and add another trigger to some other event to show this object, execute the trigger stack, and hide the object to queue it for another show.