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Island Settings Panel

By March 2, 2022March 21st, 2022No Comments

A detailed breakdown of the settings panel – situated to the right of your project map. This is where you select all of the options for your island –  from uploading videos to setting default choices, button locations and more. 

It is grouped into 2 main areas:

The image and text below shows you what each of the buttons/sections on the setting panel is used for. Click on the links (or scroll down) to see full information about each of these settings.

Individual Choice Settings

These are numbered like the diagram above.

1 - Order of choices

These buttons let the user move the order of the choices in the left-right order.

2a - Button text override

By default, your buttons will show the Name of the Island they’re linking to.

But if there’s text in this “Button text” field, it will override this.

E.g. if the island it’s linking to has the name “Dining Room”, but you want the button text to say “Eat lunch”, you enter Eat Lunch here.

2b - Hide this button

This lets you hide the button.

This is particularly useful with a default path (see below) – if the user doesn’t click any buttons, they will be taken to the default choice.

If you hide a button and make it the default choice, the user will be taken to this hidden choice. This can be used for invisible edits, looping videos and more.

3 - Link to island or external URL

This is usually the island being linked to – 

But you can also set it to External URL – which will send the viewer to a URL. You can set that to open in a new tab or the same tab or in the embedded frame. 

For full details on External URLs – Watch our tutorial video & visit this help section: How do I make a button that links to a web page or product?

4 - Default path

If the user doesn’t make a choice before the video ends, the player will move on to play the default choice as the next video.

There can only be one default choice per island, and it must be set – the project won’t validate for publishing if there’s no default set.

If you want to ensure that the viewer does pick the next island – ensure Pause at end is selected – full details below – this will stop the island at the end to wait for the user to make a decision, overriding the default choice behaviour described above.

5 - Cut on Click

This is ticked by default for all choices in new projects.

It means that when the viewer clicks a button, it will immediately switch to play the chosen island.

The opposite of this is ‘progress mode‘. This means that when the viewer clicks a button, it will wait for the end of the video before switching to play the chosen island. This is useful for seamless playback and good for drama. To use ‘progress mode‘ instead of ‘cut on click‘ UNTICK this option.

The alternative to Progress is Pause At End – below

6 - Either/or game logic

This is a way of checking back on what the user has chosen before, enabling the video to route the viewer accordingly.

You can set link options as a result of what someone has done/seen earlier.

For example, you can set Button 1 so that if the viewer clicks it, they will be taken to a reward if they made a good decision earlier, or to a punishment if they had made a bad decision earlier.

WATCH THE TUTORIAL VIDEO NOW

Read this help article for full details: How does the Either/Or game logic work for alternative paths?

Location - for quadrant button style

If you choose Quadrant Split Screen as your button style, you need to set which Quadrant you want each choice to appear in – bottom-left, bottom-right, top-right, top-left.

For full details on this – watch our invisible hotspots & split screen tutorial video or visit our help section: How do I create invisible clickable hotspots?

Settings for all choices

These are numbered like the diagram above.

7 - Button timing

This sets how many seconds the buttons should appear before the end of the video. The default for this is 10 seconds, however you can amend to whatever works for your project.

If you need longer than the video length for the viewer to make a decision, use the Pause at end – below – option too. 

8 - Button Style

There are 6 button styles. With all styles, however many buttons there are, they are divided equally across the full width of the screen.

The different options are:

  • Bottom Buttons
  • Bottom Banner
  • Right Hand Text
  • Split Screen (Left – Right)
  • Split Screen (top – Bottom)
  • Quadrant Split Screen

Bottom Buttons

Our default button style is bottom buttons. These are rectangles with rounded corners.

Bottom Banner

This is the style that was used by Netflix in Bandersnatch.

Right Hand Text

Useful if you want to sit the decision making to the side of the main video action.

Left-Right Split Screen

This is mostly used in conjunction with the “Hide text buttons to create hotspot” option, for creating invisible clickable hotspot areas on the screen. We often see this over the top of split screen graphics in the video.

When visible as text buttons, there are 2 possible substyles –

Central text & area overlay – which overlays the whole area with the text in the middle (this is the default area used for hotspots). 

Central button – this option creates central buttons – the same as the bottom buttons style above –  but aligned vertically.

Top-bottom split screen

The screen is split as above, but from top-to-bottom.

Again, this is mostly used in conjunction with the “Hide text buttons to create hotspot” option, for creating invisible clickable hotspot areas on the screen. We often see this over the top of split screen graphics in the video.

Central text & area overlay – which overlays the whole area with the text in the middle (this is the default area used for hotspots). 

Central button – this option creates central buttons – the same as the bottom buttons style above –  but aligned vertically.

Quadrant split screen

With this option, the screen split into 4 quadrants.

This is mostly used in conjunction with the “Hide text buttons to create hotspot” option, for creating invisible clickable hotspot areas on the screen. We often see this over the top of split screen graphics in the video.

There are 4 text substyle options – Central text & area overlay which overlays the whole area with the text in the middle (this is the default area used for hotspots), or a central text button, or bottom banner or bottom button.

Quadrant split screen – Central text & area overlay

Quadrant split screen – bottom banner

Quadrant split screen – central text button

Quadrant split screen –  bottom button

9 - Show text or use invisible clickable area

By default, the text is set to show on buttons. If you click “Hide text buttons to create hotspot”, the buttons (and text on them) will be invisible, but the area they would normally cover is clickable.

This is most often used is with Split Screens and Quadrants, to make clickable areas over the top of graphics in videos.

Hide text buttons to create hotspot

Make text buttons visible

For full details on this – watch our invisible hotspots & split screen tutorial video or visit our help section: How do I create invisible clickable hotspots?

10 - Pause at end

If checked, this will stop the island at the end to wait for the user to make a decision – using a freeze frame on the last frame of the video file you upload.

This overrides the default choice behaviour described above.

If you’re using this to create a menu screen – and perhaps you want to include some moving video in this – another way to do this is to create a separate ‘menu screen‘  island, where the default choice is to loop back to the beginning of this menu screen island.  Full full details on this, visit our help section: How do I make the Stornaway.io player wait until a user makes a choice instead of automatically moving on?

The alternative to Pause At End is Progress Mode – see notes on “Cut on Click” above

11 - Background and text colour override for this island

Background Colour and Text Colour are initially set in the Project Default Settings Panel. These are the default settings for the entire project and get applied to every island including retrospectively to pre-existing islands. 

If you want to override these default colours, you can override them in the each island’s settings panel.

Default Island Settings

Override Colour Settings 

12 - Timer settings

These are the settings for the timer bar for this island. 

You can choose to show/hide the timer bar.

The bar uses the background & text colour – there are settings for these to be inverted and to make the background transparent.

13 - Onscreen question text area and hide checkbox

Often used by people when they are drafting projects. Also used for learning – asking questions on the screen for viewers to answer.

A rounded box which inherits the button colours.

Onscreen question settings

Example of onscreen question

Island & Choice Settings FAQs

How do I make a button that links to a web page or product?

WATCH THE TUTORIAL NOW

Choose External URL from the “Links To” pulldown menu in the sidebar (see picture below).

Add a link and tick the box to say whether you want the link to open in another tab. If you are embedding the video, choose this.

You can use any kind of URL to a web page, PDF document, social media account, etc.

For instance, you can just link to a regular web page like https://www.stornaway.io/examples

Other examples of URLs you could link to:

  • Social media platforms allow you to create a URL with the message pre-written (e.g. this link – see more details in the “How do I share to social media” question, below).
  • Use mailto: before an email address (eg mailto:hello@stornaway.io) to make it open a new email to that address.
  • Some e-commerce platforms (like Shopify) allow you to specify a product with an Add To Cart command in the URL. Some need you to set this up.
External Links in Stornaway.io sidebar

How do I change the play button color and remove the Stornaway logo?

WATCH THE TUTORIAL NOW

In your project settings via Settings > Edit Project, Premium users can see settings which let them change the colour of the player controls and remove the logo at the bottom right of the player controls. See picture below.

To upgrade your plan, click the Top right menu > Subscription > Change Plans, or contact us.

NB this is the logo at bottom right, not the Watermark logo at top left of the video – that is only shown for Trial and Free users, and disappears when you subscribe. 

White labelling settings for Premium users

How do I create invisible clickable hotspots?

Invisible clickable hotspots can be created in the same locations as our buttons. These will let you design graphic/animated buttons in your video. You can then make that part of the frame clickable in Stornaway.

This also lets you create clickable areas, people or objects in your video – like the dog with the bone in the demo video on our home page.

Another example would be using a split screen hotspot to make each of these three people clickable. Or see the example of animated buttons at the bottom of the page.

How to make clickable video hotspots

To create a clickable hotspot in your interactive video, choose “Hide the text to create hotspot” in the sidebar of a Story Island.
Our recommendation for starting with clickable hotspots:
Most people arrange their buttons left-to-right on screen. For this, we recommend you use the Left-right Split style with Central Text and Area Overlay.
This will divide the screen left to right into as many choices as you have.
This means that if you have 2 choices, the screen will be split vertically into 2 clickable areas. The left side will be an invisible clickable area for Choice i, and the right side will be an invisible clickable area for Choice ii.
If you have 3 choices, the screen will be split vertically into thirds – Left for Choice i, Middle for Choice ii and Right for Choice iii.
And if you have 4 choices, the screen will be split vertically into quarters in the same way.
For Top-bottom choices, you can choose the Top-bottom Split style.
And to split your screen into 4 quarters, you can choose the Quadrant split screen style – the trick with this is to remember to choose a Location (eg Top-left) for each of the choices.
Below is an example video that’s been made with animated graphic buttons created in the video itself in Premiere.  Invisible clickable hotspots have been created over the top of the buttons and cassettes using Stornaway.
When a cassette is clicked, the next island’s video starts, making it seem that clicking the cassette has triggered the person in the video to select that tape.
This video is silent, but creators often use a sound at the beginning of the next island to add extra feedback to the button being clicked.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this, please let us know at support@stornaway.io

How do I start playing from any island, not just the start?

Yes! Play from here is your friend. You can find it near the top of the Sidebar for every island and tab, just under Name and Description.

When you have published your story, there’s a Public URL for every island – you can find it just next to ‘Play from here’ in the sidebar. This is a link to that specific island, so you can provide links that let viewers jump straight to an island.

This lets you share an individual island on social media, or make a list of links on a web page or create a playable visual map of your story (see our example here)

How do I make the Stornaway.io player wait until a user makes a choice instead of automatically moving on?

ChoosePause at endin the styling section in the sidebar (see picture).

This will freeze frame on the last frame of the video file you upload, and wait for the user to make a choice.

Another way to do this is to create a separate menu screen with a still or moving image:

  • To make a still image menu, create a separate island for the menu, and upload a still image as the island’s Poster Image.
  • To make a moving image menu, create a separate island for the menu, and upload a video to it. Then make one of the island’s choices to loop back to the start of the same island itself, set it as default, and hide that choice by ticking “Hide” next to its onscreen text field. The island will then loop until someone makes one of the other choices.

Pause At End

How does the Either/Or game logic work for alternative paths?

Either/or is a simple form of game logic that lets you create alternative paths for viewers, depending on what they have seen before.
So a simple use for this would be a story where the viewer makes either a good or a bad choice at the start of a story. And then at the end of the story, you show them a good ending if they chose wisely and a bad ending if they chose poorly.
Stornaway does this by checking back to see which islands the viewer has watched and then forking the viewer’s path according to your settings.
We kept it simple to begin with to maximise compatibility with different systems. Creators are using it for quite sophisticated combinations of personality tests and game logic.
You can have up to 6 islands linked from a single choice. We will be adding more variables and game logic soon.
EXAMPLE (with screenshots below)
In the above example of a good/bad choice, you might start with Island A1 linking to 2 islands: B1 (a bad choice: take the knife) and C1 (a good choice: don’t take the knife).

Then at the end, you can add an either/or condition to a button, which says:

EITHER
Link to: X1 (Bad ending – police station)

If the viewer has watched: B1 (Bad choice – take the knife)

OR 
If the viewer has more recently watched C1 (Good choice – don’t take the knife)
then Link to Y1 (Good ending – movie marathon)
The reason it’s phrased “more recently” is because viewers often watch more than once – so they might have chosen to see both B1 and C1 on different viewings, and the player checks which one they have seen on this playthrough.
If the player has seen neither B1 or C1, Stornaway would show them the first link listed here (X1) – but in this case, they will definitely have seen either one or the other.
Either Or Game Logic for Interactive Video 2

How do I make a button that shares a message to social media?

Choose External URL from the “Links To” pulldown menu in the sidebar (see picture below).

Enter a link using one of the pre-written message formats listed below for Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.

Tick the box to say whether you want the link to open in another tab (If you are embedding your project, set it to open in a new tab).



To create a pre-written Tweet with a custom message, use the format:

http://twitter.com/share?text=your+words+separated+by+plus&url=yoururlhere&hashtags=yourhashtag

For example this link creates a Twitter post that says, “Get started with the amazing Stornaway” and includes a link to the video with #interactivefilm as a hashtag.

(There should be no line break in the link, even if the browser is showing you one here)

Facebook and LinkedIn no longer allow the pre-writing of custom messages the way Twitter does.

 



To create a pre-written Facebook post, use the format:

https://www.facebook.com/sharer/sharer.php?u=yoururlhere

For example, this link creates a Facebook post that autofills the image and link to your story.



To create a pre-written LinkedIn post, use the format:

https://www.linkedin.com/sharing/share-offsite/?url=yoururlhere

For example, this link creates a LinkedIn post that autofills the video player.


How do I make interactive 360º videos in Stornaway?

Stornaway.io creators can now add 360º videos to their stories and link them up using on screen links to create interactive experiences that are even more immersive.

Your story can be entirely 360, or a mix of different media. Each Story Island is its own unique section. You can link from 360º to regular 16:9 video and stills in different story islands, and it will all flow on seamlessly. They all show with the Stornaway links you know and love.

To ensure your 360 video plays as intended, set the 180/360 projection within the video upload settings in your island sidebar.

In your project settings, tick the “use device orientation” button to enable those watching on iOS to trial out beta version of this device orientation feature.