Scripted sequence

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In video games, a scripted sequence is a pre-defined series of events that occur when triggered by player location or actions that play out in the games engine.



Some scripted sequences are used to play short cut scenes that the player has little control of. However, they are commonly used in games such as Half-Life or Call of Duty to bring in new enemies or challenges to the player in a seemingly surprising manner while they are still playing. They can also present further plot points without requiring the player to take a break by watching a cut scene. The intended results of this style of presentation is to increase immersion and to maintain a smoothly-flowing experience that keeps the player's interest.

<i>Half-Life</i> (video game) 1998 first-person shooter video game

Half-Life is a first-person shooter video game developed by Valve Corporation and published by Sierra Studios for Microsoft Windows in 1998. It was Valve's debut product and the first in the Half-Life series. Players assume the role of Gordon Freeman, a scientist who must find his way out of the Black Mesa research facility after an experiment goes wrong. The core gameplay consists of fighting alien and human enemies with a variety of weapons and solving puzzles. Unlike many other games at the time, the player has almost complete uninterrupted control of Freeman, and the story is told mostly through scripted sequences seen through his eyes.

Call of Duty is a first-person shooter video game franchise. Starting out in 2003, it first focused on games set in World War II, but over time, the series has seen games set in modern times, the midst of the Cold War, futuristic worlds, and outer space. Infinity Ward was the series' first developer, with Treyarch later becoming the second, creating a two-team development cycle. Sledgehammer Games later became the third developer in the cycle. Activision has served as the publisher for the series since its creation. Several spin-offs and handheld versions of titles have also been made by other developers. The most recent title, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, was released on October 12, 2018.

Immersion (virtual reality) perception of being physically present in a non-physical world

Immersion into virtual reality (VR) is a perception of being physically present in a non-physical world. The perception is created by surrounding the user of the VR system in images, sound or other stimuli that provide an engrossing total environment.

Scripted sequences trigger off of a number of things. A timer, progress of the game, or a check point could activate a scripted sequence. For players that speedrun video games, skipping these scripted sequences that would otherwise slow down their completion time is a talent. Being able to manipulate the games hit boxes so that the game does not trigger sequence is efficient for fast completions.

Speedrun play-through of a video game performed as fast as possible

A speedrun is a play-through of a video game performed with the intention of completing it as fast as possible. Speedruns may cover a whole game or a selected part, such as a single level. While all speedruns aim for quick completion, some speedruns are characterized by additional rules that players promise to obey, such as collecting all key items. Players attempt speedruns mainly to challenge themselves, to entertain and compete with others.

Examples in-game

Half-Life uses scripted sequences throughout the game (aside from one short cut scene). Walking near other characters can trigger scripted sequence of dialog. These dialog sequences tell the games story in a different narrative and sometimes are simply there for entertainment purposes.

Gears of War uses scripted sequences between sections of game play to provide objective reminders and tell the games story without the use of cut scenes. The game triggers a playable scripted sequence once all of the enemies have been cleared in an area, usually these sequences play while the player moves to the next area.

<i>Gears of War</i> series

Gears of War is a video game franchise created by Epic Games, developed and managed by The Coalition, and owned and published by Xbox Game Studios. The series focuses on the conflict between humanity, the subterranean reptilian hominids known as the Locust Horde, and their mutated counterparts, the Lambent and the Swarm. The franchise consists of five third-person shooter video games, which has also been supplemented by a comic book series and five novels.

Resident Evil 4 has many examples of scripted sequences that utilize a quick time event to feature more action packed game play. As the player navigates the level, they must react to the event to continue.

<i>Resident Evil 4</i> 2005 survival horror video game

Resident Evil 4 is a survival horror game developed and published by Capcom. The sixth major installment in the Resident Evil series, it was originally released for the GameCube in 2005. Players control U.S. government special agent Leon S. Kennedy, who is sent on a mission to rescue the U.S. president's daughter Ashley Graham, who has been kidnapped by a cult. In a rural part of Europe, Leon fights hordes of villagers infected by a mind-controlling parasite, and reunites with the spy Ada Wong.

Quick time event type of gameplay

In video games, a quick time event (QTE) is a method of context-sensitive gameplay in which the player performs actions on the control device shortly after the appearance of an on-screen instruction/prompt. It allows for limited control of the game character during cut scenes or cinematic sequences in the game. Performing the wrong prompt or not at all results in the character's failure at their task and often in an immediate game over, or a life being lost and being shown a death/failure animation.


Games such as Call of Duty have been criticized for a reliance on these sequences, as many feel they tend to guide a player through a game by the invisible hand of the developers, blocking progression with invisible walls until the scripted sequence has triggered further progression. [1] Also, the use of scripted sequences may diminish replay value as the surprise effect is negated upon subsequent play-throughs.

Related Research Articles

Script may refer to:

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An experience point is a unit of measurement used in tabletop role-playing games (RPGs) and role-playing video games to quantify a player character's progression through the game. Experience points are generally awarded for the completion of missions, overcoming obstacles and opponents, and for successful role-playing.

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Shooter games are a subgenre of action video game, which often test the player's speed and reaction time. It includes many subgenres that have the commonality of focusing on the actions of the avatar using some sort of weapons. Usually this weapon is a gun or some other long-range weapon. A common resource found in many shooter games is ammunition. Most commonly, the purpose of a shooter game is to shoot opponents and proceed through missions without the player character being killed or dying. A shooting game is a genre of video game where the player has limited spatial control of his or her character, and the focus is almost entirely on the defeat of the character's enemies using weaponry.

Replay value

Replay value or replayability is a term used to assess a video game's potential for continued play value after its first completion. Factors that influence replay value are the game's extra characters, secrets or alternate endings. The replay value of a game may also be based entirely on the individual's tastes. A player might enjoy repeating a game because of the music, graphics, game play or because of product loyalty. Dynamic environments, challenging AI, a wide variety of ways to accomplish tasks, and a rich array of assets could result in a high replay value.

<i>Witchaven</i> video game

Witchaven is a dark fantasy first-person shooter video game developed by Capstone Software and published by Intracorp Entertainment in 1995. Its sword-and-sorcery themed story tasks the knight Grondoval with a quest to seek and kill a lair of witches in their titular fortress, encountering hordes of hostile monsters along the way. Unlike most shooter games of the time, Witchaven was notable for featuring action role-playing elements such as leveling, as well as a distinctive emphasis on melee combat. Its code was based upon an early version of the nascent Build engine. The game received overall mixed reviews, such as praise for its atmosphere and gory combat, but criticism for some aspects of gameplay; it was followed by a sequel titled Witchaven II: Blood Vengeance in 1996.

An interactive movie, also known as a movie game, is a video game that presents its gameplay in a cinematic, scripted manner, often through the use of full-motion video of either animated or live-action footage. In modern times, the term also refers to games that have a larger emphasis on story/presentation than on gameplay.

<i>Half-Life 2: Episode One</i> first-person shooter video game

Half-Life 2: Episode One (stylized as HλLF-LIFE2: EPISODE ONE) is a first-person shooter video game, the first in an intended series of episodes that would serve as the sequels to Half-Life 2 (2004). It was developed by Valve Corporation and released on June 1, 2006. Originally called Half-Life 2: Aftermath, the game was renamed Episode One after Valve became confident in using an episodic structure for the game. Episode One uses the same game engine, Source, as Half-Life 2. The game debuted new lighting and animation technologies, as well as AI sidekick enhancements.

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<i>Wild Arms 4</i> 2005 video game

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Twitch gameplay

Twitch gameplay is a type of video gameplay scenario that tests a player's response time. Action games such as shooters, sports and fighting games often contain elements of twitch gameplay. For example, first-person shooters such as Counter-Strike as well as Call of Duty shooters require quick reaction times for the players to shoot enemies, and fighting games such as Street Fighter require quick reaction times to attack or counter an opponent. Other video game genres may also involve twitch gameplay. For example, the puzzle video game Tetris gradually speeds up as the player makes progress.

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Gravity gun type of device in video games

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<i>Feda: The Emblem of Justice</i> 1994 video game

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An adventure game is a video game in which the player assumes the role of a protagonist in an interactive story driven by exploration and puzzle-solving. The genre's focus on story allows it to draw heavily from other narrative-based media, literature and film, encompassing a wide variety of literary genres. Many adventure games are designed for a single player, since this emphasis on story and character makes multi-player design difficult. Colossal Cave Adventure is identified as the first such adventure game, first released in 1976, while other notable adventure game series include Zork, King's Quest, The Secret of Monkey Island, and Myst.

This is a glossary of video game terms which lists the general terms as commonly used in Wikipedia articles related to video games and its industry.


A cutscene or event scene is a sequence in a video game that is not interactive, breaking up the gameplay. Such scenes could be used to show conversations between characters, set the mood, reward the player, introduce new gameplay elements, show the effects of a player's actions, create emotional connections, improve pacing or foreshadow future events.


  1. “Call of Duty: Black Ops review” by Tom Francis; PCGamer, 17 november 2010.