Many rules of 360-degree virtual reality video—also known as immersive video—are similar to traditional video production. These tips will ensure your next 360-degree VR video is worth watching.

The Camera is a Character

In 360-degree VR video, viewers are immersed in the scene and feel as if they are actually on location where you are filming. When setting up your shots, imagine that you are the character in the scene. If you were going to relive this scene as one of the characters, where would you want to be seated or standing? Put your camera there.

Don’t Forget About Sound

Skip the big arrow and get your viewer to turn around and see the action with spatial audio. An external microphone will give you the best results. Professional spatial mics start at just a few hundred dollars. There are also plenty of spatial audio post-production tools available that will make your audio processing pain-free.

Move With Caution

A common complaint about 360-degree VR video is that it makes people feel motion sick or nauseous. How you move the camera is more important than if you move the camera. Only move the camera if it makes complete sense for the story you are trying to tell. If you do plan to move your camera, use steady, smooth, and constant motion.

Fill Your Scene

Fill your entire scene with interesting visual stimuli, background actors, and so forth. Choosing interesting locations can also help create a full scene. In some instances, you may tell a second or third story within one video by placing secondary action outside the user’s natural forward gaze.

Know When to Say No

Not every video should be immersive. If you do choose to create a 360-degree video, make sure you have a clear reason why, since 360-degree VR video can be incredibly challenging to produce at a high level.