Branching and Choose Your Own Adventure (CYOA) video is easy with HapYak. We offer two methods.

Users can create branching videos using the Branching Experience (where multiple videos are strung together - similar to how other expensive custom interactive video technologies work). The viewer jumps from video to video using annotations.

Or you can create In-Video branching (where all scenarios are edited together in one "Supercut"). The viewer jumps from point to point in the same video using interactions. Examples here and here.

Both work equally well. it's a personal preference based on your production process and how your videos are already produced.

Branching Experience

To create a multiple video Branching Experience go here.

In-Video Branching

  1. Create a New Project in HapYak.
  2. Add Chapters for each point in the video where a choice begins (don't worry, these are invisible to the viewer).
  3. For each Choice Point, add hotspot, text or image annotations that the viewer will click on to jump to different parts of the videos. Make sure the start time and duration for each of these is identical.
  4. On one of the choice annotations. Set "Action to take if the viewer doesn't click" to loop back.
  5. On each annotation set Link / Actions to Jump to video time and select the correct Chapter or enter a custom time.

Tracking Viewer Choices

Users can track which choices individual viewers, and your audience as a whole, take.

For branching experiences, tracking is out of the box as we report choices in the project activity and user activity reports.

For In-Video branching, those same reports show clicks to specific times in the video. But if you want to give those times names in the reports simply enter the name in the Link / Advanced / Javascript tab choice:"name" for example choice:"go_left" or  choice:"interested_in_pricing" , etc...

Best Practices

  • Focus on just 2 or 3 choices at each choice point. This is much easier for the viewer to process and results in higher interaction rates.
  • Make sure each choice point lasts for at least 10 seconds.
  • Add bumpers (sections of white or black or motion graphics) between the different choice sections to ease the transition. We recommend about 5 seconds.
  • Always allow the viewer to return to the choice points. You'll be surprised at how many viewers want to watch a branching video over and over again. To do so, simply add a text or image annotation that links back to the choice point.
  • Optional Pro Tip: Continue the audio track underneath the choice points and bumpers. This creates a more seamless experience for the viewer.
  • Super Pro Tip: You can even track how viewers are experiencing the branching video and trigger actions based on those paths.

Here is a video that walks you through the best practices for branching and choose your own adventure video.

We're always happy to advise on your branching interactive video project. Email support@hapyak.com any time for personalized advice.

Did this answer your question?