Think about some of the best movie trailers you've ever seen; the ones that made you sit up and say, "I gotta see that!" (For my money, they don't get any better than the trailer for Cloverfield.)
A good game trailer can have the same impact. For example, I just got my first look at Daredevil Dave: Motorcycle Stuntman! Immediate reaction? I gotta play that! Watch the trailer for yourself (the whole thing) and see if you don't agree:
Funny, right? I mean, the developer had me from the get-go: the opening lines immediately made me think of Super Dave Osborne. (If that name means nothing, shame on you for being so much younger than me.)
Then, at around the 40-second mark, the trailer went from amusing to hilarious, and I knew this was the game for me. Egomaniacal stuntman + insane motorcycle jumps + extended ragdoll death scenes = here's my money.
If anything, the trailer almost gives away too much (just like nearly every movie trailer--hey, Pixar, you don't have to show half of "Toy Story 3" to get me to come see it!). But that's splitting hairs. The bottom line is that a funny, smartly edited game trailer can be far more effective than a handful of static screenshots. Something to keep in mind, game developers.
The game itself is just as much silly fun as you'd expect--and you get to "jump the shark" on the very second level! Daredevil Dave is well worth 99 cents (the current sale price). The trailer: priceless.
What game trailers made you click "Buy" within moments of watching them? Personally, I'm still waiting for the opportunity to play