Events aren’t NPCs: The Biggest Mistake in Cutscene Events

in Tips and Tricks

So you start to make your cutscene. The event is triggered (either through autorun, player touch, or action button), and it started.

The first NPC had his little speech, and now its time for the next NPC to do something. So you may be asking yourself “well how do I trigger that NPC, do I use a switch and pages?”

dontneedWell, you need an event, but you don’t really need it to have any COMMANDS or to trigger. To explain this, let’s first talk about WHAT IS AN EVENT?

Too often, people fail to see what an event really is. They think of events as their NPCs. They try to move them from map to map, have them be autonomous, and many other weird things that come from viewing events wrong.

Events aren’t NPCs, they are representations. Instead of being actors with their own autonomy, they are more like action figures. Instead of the event that starts it being a director, its more like a kid playing with his figures.

So how do we do this?

moverouteSee here on the move route command? Move route can move ANY event (or the player) from the first triggering event. No reason to trigger another event to have it move, just tell it to move.

Like I said, think of it like a kid playing with his action figures. He moves them all, he talks for them all. Talking you say?

showtextYou’ll notice that the show text command has ZERO connection to the event that triggered it, you can select any face graphic you want. There is no reason that it has to originate from the same event that is the graphical representation of the person talking.

And that is the thing. Events are only graphical representations. In fact, you can use the same event to be 8 different characters (if none of them show up at the same time).

eventsSee those two events in the upper left corner? Those are completely blank. Nothing in them, no graphic, nothing.

I know what you are saying: But Nick, what are they GOOD for then? Those are my action figures guys!

A cutscene starts, and I need two guards to come out. What do I do? Easy, using the original cutscene event, I use “Set Event Location” to move both of them just off of the visible area for the player where the guards would come in, then I use “Set Move Route”. You’ll notice in the move routes there is a “Change Graphic” command. Using that, I can set them to guard graphics, walk them onto the scene, have them do their part, and then do the whole thing in reverse, moving them back up into the corner when I’m done.

Time to do another cutscene on the same map? Use the same blank events. They are just action figures. And unlike a real life action figure, you can completely change what they look like!

So let’s go over the points I made here:

  1. You only ever need one event issuing commands in a cutscene.
  2. You can reuse blank events to represent as many NPCs as you want as long as they don’t appear at the same time.

Hopefully, these tips will help you out. Any questions? More tips on common mistakes? Another way to cut down on event and switch clogging? Check in on the comments section below.

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