review – ‘Rolling Credits’ SUGARfx

Do I really need this… YES !

Another fine delivery from the good people at SUGARfx; again I’m quite surprised by this one, as I never thought I would really need something like this. I always assumed that the free or built in Rolling Credits would suffice. I was definitely wrong.

This plugin frees you to concentrate on making credits with a bit of life in them, but generally with less hassle than by hand.

Credits are usually either ignored, or usually in an area that people don’t put any creative input into. In a big budget arena, this is delegated so someone to put creative energy into, but for a lot of independent producers, its just another thing on a long list of things to get done..

 

Here we go again..

So, once again, I’m using a plugin that I initially think I’d not need… This seems to be a recurring theme with a lot of these plugins; I usually pass them by as I’m thinking, ‘I’ll never need that.. I’ll just do it by hand’ and then at the 11th hour, I find myself going through my history to find what that damn plugin (that will now save me) is !

 

Squeezing the last life out of post production

This plugin fits neatly into this example.

During long productions, and during low budget productions, I end up doing the credits, or thinking “there’s not that many credits, I’ll just use the built in tools”, which is foolish as your credits list is usually 3 times longer than where you started.. It’s like a wedding invitation list… all the people you can’t leave out.. and then re-adding names and adjusting things with the standard tools in FCPx is cripplingly slow.

 

So basically at the end of production;

  • There’s a little amount of time to do the credits,
  • It always takes longer than you think,
  • Everyone’s energy is running on fumes..

 

Doesn’t take your last bit of creative juice

At the end of a production the energy levels are usually quite low, and therefore coming up with anything creative or interesting for the credits is a strain. Therefore (and we see this a lot) the standard white over black is used.. Some people think that it’s the ‘classic’ look, but when I see effort into the end credits, I feels that it’s refreshing.

 

This ‘Rolling Credits’ plugin is  breeze to use, simple to find and install via the lovely ‘FX Factory’ utility.

There are things that I really like about this is it’s speed.. I feel that somehow this bypasses the rather slow text engine of FCPx, giving very quick feedback.

 

The easy and elegant FX Factory app, making it easy to preview and purchase plugins.

 

The FX Factory is, as always, simple to use and a hub for finding new plugins, testing them out and watching tutorials.

 

 

 

 

The simple Text editor is simple, and is one area I’m sure will be updated

Text Editor

The Text editor is a simple text editor, it works well, but it’s simpleness does reveal one of the design choices that SUGARfx made; you can only have one font style (unless the plugin has that feature) The main font is chosen outside of the text editor. This limits having 2 columns, then one column etc.. It’s not a deal breaker, and of course there are ways around it, but it would be better to have everything you need to make credit titles in ONE instance of the plugin.

I like the controls !

The onscreen controls are simple and intuative

They are simple and due to the speed of the feedback, they are simple to use also. So, when you fiddle with the controls, they don’t really need labels, the text moves and animates fast enough to see what the control does.

The best way is to simply press ‘play’ and then twiddle around with the controls to see what happens. Indeed I find that I find far more combinations that I like when simply playing around.

 

Some things I’d like to see implemented:

  • Importing and handling of logos & graphics: Sometimes there are 3rd parties that are involved in a production, and it would be good to be able to have their logo’s at the bottom. However, if you do the ‘linear move hack’ it’s easy to get graphics to follow along nicely.
  •  Variable font size: It seems that the font can be changed, but having individual font size within the crawl is set overall.

Again, I’m sure this will be updated.

 

I think I’m a tad daft.

There’s a few things that don’t seem to make things slower.. i.e. adjusting the ‘Title Offset’ seemed very slow (on my machine anyway). However, it may be just my setup.. Also, I’m only talking about something that you’d set once or twice.. so again, not a big deal.

Also, some to the presets are great, but some are a tad ‘out there’ indeed the ‘Rolling Credits 12’ is really whacky, and the undulatory effect has to be put to 100% to switch it off. Mostly the controls stay within ‘normal’ boundaries of control.

‘Rolling Credits 10’ Which is like star-wars but directly towards camera and with an undulating wave displacing each line is very whacky.. and I couldn’t really get any settings that made things clear. However, it was still fun, and I’m sure someone would find it perfect !

 

However, perhaps I’m only thinking in the serious, documentary feel to everything. I’m sure they would be a good fit for kid or comedy etc. However, I got some great versions that started off life as a whacky preset, but using the ‘Size Bias’ that can quickly and easily give different options, in a ‘oh, I didn’t think of that‘ type result. 🙂

Also, it’s best to switch off ‘background rendering’ as it does take a while to stop sometimes.

 

SUMMARY

This is a great little plugin that quickly moves your titles from ‘boring’ to interesting. It adds just the right amount of polish, with a minimal amount of input. A few things are missing, but I feel these omissions will be addressed. Right now the plugin is a solid worker, allowing you to experiment and get a good result quickly.

Good Stuff SUGARfx.. keep ’em comin’ !

 

 


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