Blog, How To

How to make an interactive video – getting started

How to make an interactive video - getting started

Creating an interactive video with Near-Life CREATOR is easy. In this tutorial, we’re going to show you how to get up and running in a few quick steps.

Before you start making your interactive video

To complete this tutorial, you’ll need to download a few media assets first.

Download the media for this exercise here


  1. When you login you’ll see your Projects area, this is where you organise and save all of your Projects.  You can have an unlimited number of projects and each project can have unlimited scenarios.
  2. To add a new Project, click the white box Create project+ box.
  3. Then name your project and save – you can change the name of your project by selecting the Project button (in your Project) and clicking Edit.
  4. Next click ‘add new scenario’ 
  5. Afterwards this takes you to the Scenario Settings page. This is where you set your scenario defaults. Scenario Settings are explained in more detail here.
  6. When you Save your settings, you’ll be taken to the Canvas.
  7. The Canvas is where you design, then build, then test and publish your scenario.
  8. The small box you can see in the Canvas is a Node. This is your starting Node.
    1. A Node is a container or placeholder for your media and interactions.
  9. You can create scenarios with video, images or slides. For this quick example, we’re going to create a scenario with video.
  10. Then click the Upload Media button to upload your media.
  11. This Upload Media window allows you to set the thumbnail that will appear in the media library and in the Node when you’re on the Canvas. Simply drag the playhead across. Once you’re happy with all your clip thumbnails, click upload.
  12. For this tutorial, we’re going to create a simple branching scenario using buttons.
  13. Next click edit in the first node to get started.
  14. We’ll include the Node title in the end report so give it a meaningful name, something that the end user will understand.
  15. After that you can add a description, it’s optional, but it comes in very handy if you want to storyboard your scenario before creating your media.
  16. Since we’ve already uploaded video files, you can select video from the Type drop-down list and then choose the correct file from the Media drop-down list. In this example, we’ve called our first file Choose a destination so it matches the node name and is easy to locate.
  17. The video format defaults to 2D, but if you’re working with VR media, you can change the format here. See Working with VR.
  18. Since we’re working with video, the duration is already set. But when you work with non-video media, you have the option to set a duration. This is how long the node will appear on the front end.  See Working with Slides and Images as media.
  19. Afterwards you can decide what happens when this clip ends if the end user doesn’t complete an interaction. To set a default, choose a node title or <New Node> from the On end, jump to: drop down list. Setting a <New Node> creates the container where you’ll add the media – you won’t see this Node until you’re back in the Canvas.
  20. If you want to tell your users how much time they have to make a decision, tick enable Media countdown. It will automatically be set to the default countdown that you set in Scenario Settings. You can override the default by moving the slider.
  21. Now, to add an interaction, you need to add an overlay. Overlays can be text, images, hotspots or buttons. For this exercise, we’ll create button so select the button group option.
  22. Overlay name – you can rename the Overlay here. See Using Overlays for more tips.
  23. Button text – Enter your button text here. For this example, type: City break.
  24. Jump to Node – Select <New Node> to create a placeholder for the outcome Media.
  25. Feedback – Enter some feedback about this choice, it will appear in the end of scenario report that the end user sees.
  26. Score – we did not set a score in Scenario Settings so you can ignore this for now. See Scoring.
  27. Add a Button – this example needs three buttons, one for each outcome destination, so you need to add two more buttons. Click the “Add new button” button.
  28. Repeat steps 23-26 for each button. Name one button “Sun, sea and sand” and the other “Winter getaway”
  29. Save.
  30. In the Canvas, you should be able to see five nodes.
  31. You can now click on the Media Library button in the Canvas to then drag and drop the media from the Media Library into the nodes.
  32. Test – to test the Scenario and make sure the buttons do what you expect, click on the Play button in the top right corner of the Canvas.
  33. Use the playbar in the preview screen to skip ahead in the Scenario.
  34. Once you are happy with that the Scenario plays as expected. Close the preview player to return to the Canvas and hit the Publish button.
  35. You’ll see that the Share and Analytics buttons are now active. Click on the Share button and then copy the embed code or link for sharing.
  36. That’s it!


Getting started with Near-Life CREATOR.pdf

Want to know more about interactive video?

If you’d like to learn more about why Near-Life is the right tool for creating interactive videos, please go ahead and book a demo.

Or, if you’re already confident it’s right for you, you can get started right away with a free trial.

Be sure to check out the rest of our ‘How to make an interactive video’ series:

Need to find out more? Get in touch with our team.

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