"Seems you'll need a bit of a tutorial... (sighs)
Very well, we'll start simple."
As games become more and more complex and the basic functions required become more numerous, players become less interested in reading through 20+ pages of manual just to find out how to open the inventory. For that reason, game designers are increasingly relying on integrated tutorials to tell the player what to do as he plays through the early parts of the game.
One way of doing this is to have the characters tell the player how to do his thing throughout the game
, but if the protagonist is some kind of soldier or otherwise trained character it rather spoils the game's atmosphere to make him look like a rookie. It's even worse when the protagonist is being told stuff he already knows
, and the designers couldn't think of a way to work in a tutorial
To this end, the Justified Tutorial provides a special in-continuity tutorial section which allows the character to "train" or learn his stuff without it looking too forced. Sometimes these sequences are integrated into the start of the game; in others, they are optional from the menu. In either case, they are part of the game's universe rather than being self-contained tutorials.
The in-game tutorials are sometimes dependent on the difficulty setting, meaning that they aren't present in higher difficulty playthroughs.
- The Legend of Zelda:
- In The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Link's friends ask him to show off the slingshot and wooden sword he acquired, shortly before they chase after a monkey and Link gets his first taste of real enemies chasing after them. More advanced sword moves are taught to Link by the ghost of the Hero of Time.
- The Wind Waker has Link engage in a sparring match with elderly wise man Orca at his cottage; doing so will obtain the sword needed to progress through the first half of the game. Players could also return much later to engage in a harder sparring challenge to earn some particularly nifty rewards.
- In Ocarina of Time, the Kokiri and the elements that make up Link's home village perform a similar role to the Twilight Princess kids, i.e. one Kokiri asks Link to use his sword to cut the grass, another (sitting on a ledge) teaches him to use his new fairy to speak at a distance. You can also simply ignore them altogether and just dive right into the game.
- Skyward Sword has the sparring hall, which while it is optional, allows the player to get used to the new motion controls, while being able to get the feel of the enemies seen in the game.
- Closer to the trope, they justify the flight tutorial with two reasons: one, Link's just been gliding with his Loftwing recently (right before a ceremony which requires great control over a Loftwing); and two, said Loftwing was very recently imprisoned, and Zelda wants to make sure nothing's overly wrong.
- The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction begins with a soldier wearing a VR helmet to "simulate" being the Hulk, in order to learn his techniques and how he smashes.
- The Batman Begins Licensed Game starts, like the film, with Bruce getting trained by the League of Shadows.
- The first "level" in the game based on Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone involves Fred and George Weasley guiding Harry through part of the school. This teaches the player how to run and jump, to watch out for certain pitfalls, and about the importance of Bertie Botts' Every-Flavour Beans (the game's currency). The built-in Wizarding School premise allows you to be taught how to do spells by the, well, teachers.
- While in the Playstation version of the game, the tutorial hits as Malfoy steals Hedwig, causing Ron and Harry to chase after him, Ron teaching Harry how to run, jump as well as everything else covered in the PC tutorial.
- The latter games, by which time Harry really should know basic magic, find a roundabout way to do this. Generally, when the game wants to teach you how to do X, a character will ask Harry, "Can you teach me how to do X?" with the explanation actually being for your benefit and your attempts to do the spell being Harry's "demonstration" for the other character.
- In Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver, Raziel gets toasted by the bossman Kain and thrown into hell. When he is revived, he is still a bit torn up (wings shredded, lower jaw missing, etc.), and many of his abilities have changed. His new benefactor is kind enough to walk him through the use of his new abilities.
- Roughly a third of the gameplay of each Overlord game consists of Minion and strategy tutorials. The first game does it so well that it's hardly noticable - the sequel, unfortunately, is much less subtle about its tutorials.
- Mirrors Edge does this quite smoothly - the player character's recent accident is mentioned, and so you have to show your operator that you're back in shape. The training serves as an introduction to both a vital NPC and the game's unique play style. Plus it can be skipped at any time.
- Pikmin 2 has the first day spent controlling Louie, who needs to learn the ropes from someone who's been to the Pikmin planet before.
- Given that the protagonist of Avencast: Rise of the Mage begins by taking final exams in Wizarding School, the tutorial fits perfectly.
- The tutorial in Nier takes place immediately after the protagonist signs a pact with Grimoire Weiss, so it's him learning how to use magic to fend off Shades. This is important for a few reasons; it takes place 1300 years before the game proper, it serves as a Taste Of Power for the spells you can get and it's actually the Shadowlord's origin. You can even do it again later as a part of a sidequest and get the pipe you used back then.
- Kane and Lynch: Dead Men puts an interesting spin on this, with the hero and player character, Kane, actually training another character, Lynch, in the finer points of in-game combat, such as throwing grenades, precise aiming, rappeling, and whatnot. Functionally it's the same as other examples on this page, but works well since Kane is already expected to possess these skills.
- The Iron Man game of the movie's tutorial is when Tony first puts on the armor to escape the cave he was held in. The tutorial proceeds as Tony gets used to controlling the armor, continuing in the second mission when he upgrades it to include flight capabilities and tests them out.
- In the second one his armor is damaged at the beginning of the game and he only has limited systems available. It self repairs, however, and more functions return as the tutorial goes on.
- Terminator: Dawn of Fate for the XBox has a nice twist. The good guys just built a new training facility and so they invite the seasoned operative, Kyle Reese, to test it out and see if it is cool.
- Iji starts her self-titled game waking up six months after an Alien Invasion and implanted with some of their nanomachines. Her brother Dan explains to her how everything works via logbooks he left behind, which can be skipped. Hidden skills are explained in other logbooks throughout the game.
- Many, if not all, of the Army Men games had a boot camp level and in the case of Air Tactics, Air Attack and such, flight school.
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer used this in the form of a training run set up by Giles.
- Reservoir Dogs has a tutorial sequence where Joe Cabot trains Mr. Orange (the newest member of his gang) on the basics of armed robbery before the big jewelry store hold-up. The training sequence has the gang using paintball bullets and setting up a training simulation in an empty warehouse, with the other criminals sarcastically acting out the roles of cops and civilians.
- The Matrix: Path of Neo has this, since Neo needs to learn to fight in a series of tutorials, with Tank acting as Mr. Exposition and explaining how to do everything.
- The Journeyman Project 3 has the player try out the various interface functions as Mr. Exposition performs a diagnostic on his suit.
- The original The Journeyman Project was less successful, however, unless we are to believe that it is part of Agent 5's job each day to read the instruction manual for his biosuit.
- The remake Pegasus Prime actually fixes this problem from the first game, as it transforms the review of the biosuit manual from a daily task into a small portion of Gage's punishment for being late to work for the fourth time.
- Subverted in Homestar Ruiner, the first episode of Strong Bad's Cool Game for Attractive People: One of the objectives in the game involves disguising Strong Bad as Homestar Runner and entering the Free Country USA Triannual Race To The End Of The Race in his place. The first time you run the race you're going to do terribly because Strong Bad has no idea what he's doing and Coach Z flat-out refuses to tell him because, as Homestar, he's supposed to have been training for the race for a good while now.
- And parodied in the game's actual tutorial, where Strong Sad complains that he doesn't want to be in Strong Bad's stupid tutorial, and where Bubs has apparently been paid to read his part of the script.
- WWE Day of Reckoning has a tutorial mode centered around Al Snow (the head trainer from WWE Tough Enough seasons 1-3) teaching a pair of rookies how to wrestle. As a bonus, the two trainees are clearly modeled after John Hennigan and Matt Cappotelli, the two winners from Tough Enough season 3.
- In the Dragon Ball Z game Burst Limit, the tutorial is justified in that you play as kid Gohan being trained in combat by Piccolo; this fits in perfectly to the canon.
- The X-Universe series has its share of justified tutorials.
- X: Beyond the Frontier integrates its tutorial into you putting an xperimental combat shuttle through its paces (teaching you how to shoot, having you Pass Through the Rings to learn maneuvering/test the shuttle's systems, etc.). Then your jumpdrive goes haywire and you end up several galaxies away with no way home.
- In addition to the obvious (and optional) "Flight School" tutorial, X3: Terran Conflict's first plot (there's nine altogether) is effectively one long tutorial, with "Press X for Y effect" popping up on your HUD.
- Runescape featured Tutorial Island, which is a bit Fourth Wall breaking for this trope but scrapes by.
- This has since been redone into a Tutorial basement located under Lumbridge, wherein the PC must perform a number of tasks for a high-levelled NPC as he explains the world to you.
- Finally further expanded into an entire town dedicated in-universe to helping newcomers to the land. Different from the old town dedicated to this purpose. Runescape has gone though alot of tutorials. The basement version went through 3-4 different versions, including a revert to the old island.
- In the original Runescape, it was just a house where a bunch of people told you how to do things.
- Final Fantasy XI originally averted this trope by dumping a brand new player in his starting city with a coupon worth 50 gil, visible body armor and a weapon and, if you matched up the correct race with the correct city, a special ring. Go!
- They later added a tutorial quest series that starts when you trade the coupon in, provided your character was created after that particular update.
- Kingdom of Loathing holds your hand and tells you how you're supposed do everything during the first quest, to get you started. The quest is, appropriately, given to you by the puneriffic Toot Oriole.
- The Matrix Online has a fairly well-integrated tutorial sequence, in which you, as a new Redpill, have to calibrate your in-world HUD (presented within your field of view directly by The Matrix) and are taught about combat.
- Done very well in World of Warcraft's Wrath Of The Lich King expansion: On making a new Death Knight character, the player is introduced to the workings of the class, some of the expansion's new features, and a significant amount of plot by doing the bad guy's dirty work, including things like terrorizing a village from the back of a skeletal griffin. This is exactly as awesome as it sounds.
- Other character classes in WoW don't get true tutorials, but they get a similar effect in two different ways. The most obvious way is, when you create a new character, every time that character is prompted to do something new (talk to an NPC, accept a quest, read the map) an exclamation mark appears. Click on it and it opens a window telling you how to do it. Experienced players or players who want to find their own way around can turn off that setting. More subtly, most classes get new abilities every other level until 40, more or less. That means you have two levels to learn to use the one you just got before you get another one.
- Mists Of Pandaria introduced Monks, who go to the Peak of Serenity in Pandaria to spar with a trainer. Depending on the trainer, they can only be defeated by using a certain technique you learn while leveling up (Such as touch of death, spear hand strike, ect. ect.).
- The MMO Fallen Earth begins with the player character freshly decanted from a cloning tube, after being cloned, mindwiped, and killed for hundreds if not thousands of cycles of life and death, and thus justifiably unsure of how to walk. It goes downhill from there.
- City of Heroes has on optional tutorial in which you play the part of a new hero who has just arrived in Paragon City. You are sent to help contain a chemical outbreak that is turning street punks into mindless killers. You are then taught how to use Inspirations and Enhancments, how the Mission system works, and how to determine an enemy's level by the color its name is. The actual control system is displayed in a window that shows whenever you start a new character.
- The Villain's tutorial teaches all the same things, but the setup is even more justified. You are breaking out of jail and have to recover your powers, beat up guards, and plant a bomb before you can get away.
- Though, a lot of veteran players will still opt for the tutorial because it give you just enough points to reach Level 2, allowing you to start the game proper with three powers, rather than two.
- With the advent of City of Heroes: Freedom, both heroes and villains start in the same tutorial, helping the Freedom Phalanx fight off magic meteor creatures before deciding which side you will join.
- In Earth And Beyond, to learn new abilities, you would have to complete a short mission in which the use of that ability was required to succeed, ensuring that the player actually knew how to use said ability.
- The online, MMO portion of Phantasy Star Universe handled its (optional) tutorial mission, "SEED-Form Purge," this way. All new player characters were assumed to be new employees of the GUARDIANS Security Corporation, fresh from its academy. Any actual explanation of gameplay mechanics was done through text on screen rather than through the characters, with character dialogue giving the impression that equivalent in-universe explanations were given to the player character.
- DC Universe Online begins with your newly-empowered character escaping from one of Brainiac's ships and fighting off robots, with the guidance of Oracle or Calculator (depending on your alignment) teaching your how to use your powers.
- The early Tomb Raider games allowed you to romp around Lara's house and training grounds to get used to the various different controls.
- Psychonauts has Basic Braining. The young psychics go into Coach Oleander's mind for training in basic platforming on a live-fire obstacle course.
- Additionally, shorter tutorials are given by teachers whenever the protagonist learns a new psychic ability.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for the Xbox. The turtles start out the game by breaking into the big bad's fortress; they end up entering in the training area.
- Ghost Trick seems to be unique in that it has the tutorial first (Ray explaining to Sissel how to use his Ghost Tricks to save Lynne), but the actual justification doesn't come until later. Ray is manipulating Sissel into protecting Lynne, so the tutorial was actually a disguised way to make sure he saves her from the hitman.
- Arguably the entire first half of Portal is a Justified Tutorial, since you're a new test subject and they do have to explain the concepts to you. The basic commands involved appear as pop-up instructions just as they did in Half-Life 2. Portal 2 features a more standard tutorial in the form of a routine check-up of test subjects in hypersleep; the ridiculousness of the commands you are given ("look up at the ceiling", "look down at the floor", "go stare at the painting") is integrated into the series' characteristic humor. It then parodies the trope in the next scene, where Wheatley asks Chell to say "Hello" and then "Apple", and the player is prompted to do both by pressing space, which actually just makes you jump.
- Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 featured a boot camp campaign.
- Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 puts a humorous twist to this: the three sides, represented by the main tank type each side uses, calls a cease-fire and bands together to train the new commander (the player) on how to play the game "so that you don't send men to die needlessly." Despite the truce, the three tanks frequently banter and shoot at each other, most often at the Soviet Hammer tank.
- In StarCraft, a marine says, "Permission to speak freely, sir? I don't really think you know what you're doing." and proceeds to explain the two basic modes of movement. As one is new to the job of being the local magistrate, it's understandable. In addition, one can skip this mission.
- They integrate further minor tutorials into the first missions of the Zerg and Protoss campaigns as well (chiefly to explain the quirks of each faction).
- In Sacrifice, the player character begins as a master wizard, for whom a tutorial would be rife with As You Know. Instead, the tutorial/prologue has the player control a different character, a novice wizard who appears in the game proper as an NPC.
- Both Homeworld games frame the tutorial as a series of preflight tests for the newly-built mothership. There is also a tutorial on using the camera and issuing movement commands in three dimensions that is not part of the first level, and can be skipped.
- The tutorial for Medieval II: Total War places you as a Lieutenant in William the Conqueror's army, in the battle of Hastings in which William invaded England and later became its king. The game itself begins in 1087, upon William's death, and the "suggested" campaign for new players is the English Faction campaign, which naturally continues that story if you've just played the tutorial. Whichever faction you choose though, the game will likely be heavily influenced by this new dynasty on the rise in the Island Kingdom.
- Except if you are playing Scotland, in which case you are going to destroy them within the first 10 turns, or if you play Russia/Byzantine (Maybe Sicily) and thus are sufficiently far away (And sufficiently not a crusade target) for England to not really care.
- In Desperados the game begins as the main hero meets his old-time buddy in the middle of a town festival and is invited to participate in some healthy and editorial activities, like flowerpot-shooting and knife-throwing. Each new member of the team later gets his/her own personal level to show off their abilities. Notable, that the tutorials for the last two members are done in full-blown combat conditions and can get them killed.
- Almost half of Brütal Legend's story mode is one giant tutorial for the multiplayer aspects of the game, but split up across different events. Team positioning is Eddie setting up the rules to the headbangers on how they'll function as a team.
- Pokémon Conquest features the player character having recently become Warlord of a new Kingdom. Cue convenient Mooks trying to take over the place. Since he/she has never been in battle before (don't ask how that works), a girl by the name of Oichi hops in and lends him/her a hand in battle.
- The game Tachyon: The Fringe has a unique approach to this. Your character, already a good pilot, is supposed to evaluate a new training officer by letting her train you.
- During this mission (which is entirely optional), there is a malfunction, and the training satellites start shooting at you, providing you with some combat experience. This gets turned into a Brick Joke when TNS News reports that the training officer later saved her students when the same thing happened again later.
- The FreeSpace series has two takes on this. In the first game, you're handed a fighter and a peashooter and have live-fire training with a tutor. In the sequel (32 years later in the continuity) live training has been phased out and you're put into a 'Training Simulator Module.' The stern but fatherly instructor has been replaced by a pre-recorded, overly enthusiastic AI.
- In both cases, you are given an option on the Briefing Screen to skip the tutorial if you already know how to fly a space fighter.
- It's also funny that in FreeSpace 2 the training simulator states that it is not intended as a replacement for actual field training...yet it's the only training you get.
- Star Wars: TIE Fighter justified things (at least story-wise) with the player character (at least according to the book) getting to be a full-time pilot instead of a starfighter mechanic after he jumped into a TIE fighter and fended off four Rebel starfighters attacking an Imperial admiral's shuttle.
- Averted in Steel Battalion, which features a "tutorial" stage that is intended to emulate the very beginning of Mobile Suit Gundam. After being told you will receive months of simulator training before even being allowed near the cockpit of the Humongous Mecha, a well-timed attack by the enemy occurs, and your main character says he will just use the manual to pilot it. The game is not only saying this for effect: It actually expects you to use the manual for the first, and likely subsequent, stages. Yes, it is that complicated.
- Thankfully, the buttons you must use to start your mech's engine ignition are lit up on your forty-button controller in the order they should be pressed in. Just don't play the game, if you're starting out, in front of a friend who is well-versed in the basic fundamentals of mech piloting, unless you have very considerate friends. You don't get very much help at all otherwise, which is great for immersion but bad if you fail to notice the blinking buttons in your lap.
- Microsoft Flight Simulator starts you out with training missions, with your co-pilot explaining all the controls (and unavoidable things like 'press F2 to do this' the first time it comes up). Later missions assume you know what you're doing and leave you to it.
- The player character of Warship Gunner 2 is a freshly-minted navy officer and the first few missions are a flashback to his basic training. A later tutorial runs him through the basics of submarine navigation.
- Each Harvest Moon features different characters, and most of them are newbie who have just gotten into a farmwork. Players from Rune Factory have amnesia, plus they're instantly put into a farm for almost no reason.
- The MechWarrior games since 2 have tutorials available, with varying levels of justification, almost always optional.
- In 2 and Ghost Bear's Legacy, the tutorial is an optional training zone as overseen by a bitter, cranky instructor. Since you're playing a member of the Clans who believe fully in Training from Hell, these exercises are live-fire, explaining why you can actually die in the tutorial. Accepting a tutorial presumes that you are still a trainee, though there's no real explanation for why you can choose to return to them even after you have advanced to a high rank and still get treated like dirt.
- On the other hand, the tutorial in 2: Mercenaries is an optional, unrepeatable starting campaign that is offered to any mercenaries who want to take part as a sort of "universal basics" course. In keeping with the mercenary theme of the game, you get paid to do it, but you also have to pay for your own repairs if you manage to break anything as well as not die, because the tutorial still a military campaign with the intent of fighting pirates.
- The tutorials for 3 are cast as classes for new recruits to the Eridani Light Horse mercenary unit, which, while understandable, is still odd since it goes over basics that even the greenest Mechwarrior should already know in-universe.
- The tutorial for 4 has you playing your hero as a cadet, and thus actually learning the functions presented in a somewhat logical fashion—he's getting his first 'Mech and they have to teach him how to use it. Black Knight does it as a sort of hiring test for the mercenary Black Knight Legion. 4: Mercenaries changes it up somewhat by having the tutorial act as some kind of required formality for registering and activating a mercenary company (presumably the registry service wants proof you at least know what you're doing with that 'Mech). Your Deadpan Snarker main character will constantly take verbal potshots at the inanity of the process the whole time.
- Mechwarrior Online's tutorial is cast only as a basic firing range with neither instructor nor objectives—just a bunch of inert 'Mechs standing around on one of the game's various maps, allowing the player to try out the basics of control on their own. Guided lessons are given via internet videos. Anything more advanced than moving, attacking, and reading your displays, however, is going to be learned the hard way.
- Three of the four games in the Hitman series (Codename 47, Silent Assassin, and Blood Money) use this trope. In the first, Agent 47 is walked through the basics of being an assassin by the mysterious Dr. Ort-Meyer as he escapes from an asylum; in the second, 47 tromps through some ruins to get back in practice after having temporarily retired from his trade; and in the fourth, the tutorial mission is placed in the context of a simple hit 47 is carrying out on a carnie. Curiously, the third game in the series, Hitman: Contracts, dispensed with the in-game tutorial in favor of a weird, shadowy dreamscape where 47 could go to brush up on his firearms and stealth skills; however, considering that Contracts was a fever dream/extended flashback 47 had as he lay dying from a gunshot wound, this was entirely appropriate. Although Contracts did have a series of hints and instructions flash up on the screen in its first mission.
- The Assassin's Creed I tutorial is actually quite seamlessly integrated into the game, as Desmond is being taught to use videogame-style controls to operate the Animus.
- In the sequel the player still controls Desmond, who knows how the controls in the Animus work (which is like a video game). So instead of having him learn again the game will feature multiple points in the new Assassin's life, allowing a Fallout 3-like tutorial that will teach the player the controls.
- Specifically, the gameplay mechanics are introduced in the first two chapters as part of Ezio's life; for example, the first story memory has Ezio fist fighting on a bridge (to teach melee basics), then when Ezio goes to beat up his sister's cheating boyfriend grabbing is introduced, and more advanced moves are introduced in the second chapter when Ezio undertakes combat training at his uncle's request.
- In Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, Ubisoft assumes that most players are already familiar with the basic controls, so you're cast into the plot straight away with only basic on-screen prompts to guide you.
- Assassins Creed III introduces you to tree-running and hunting with the conceit that Connor is teaching his friend.
- The optional tutorial in Thief: The Dark Project is a flashback to Garrett's training as a child just taken from the street, and in it he's given simple tasks to do the way he chooses. Thief: Deadly Shadows' first level is a heavy-handed, mandatory tutorial where Garrett has to follow the blue footsteps on a routine job. The drop in tutorial justification subtlety is staggering.
- Averting this (in the ruined atmosphere due to suspension of disbelief case) was the reason for the infamous Metal Gear Solid 2 player character switcheroo.
- The first level of Splinter Cell involves Sam 'calibrating' his experimental new suit. The button/action prompts appeared on the HUD, and the in-universe action prompts were over the radio. The sequels dispensed with the "calibration" entirely.
- In Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror the player character (Logan) is stated as giving the new training a test run to give his opinion of it. He even tells the trainer to treat him like a new recruit and several times during the training has to remind the trainer, who says things like, "But, you know all this already." that he needs to be treated like a new recruit if he is to properly test the training.
- Not quite this, but strongly related - in Metal Gear Solid 4, if you attempt to start the online game without having a PSN account, it "connects" you to a fake Tech Support chat program supposedly written by Otacon, who remains completely in character while talking you through the process of registering you and checking connection problems. If you repeatedly bring him in a loop or deliberately provide him with false answers, he'll even complain. Obviously, it can't be canon, because although the Excuse Plot of Metal Gear Online is that it's all a VR simulation, PS3 accounts certainly wouldn't be involved. But in that series, that's normal.
Table Top Games
- The opening of Silent Hill: Downpour has Murphy beating a child molester to death with a knife and a baseball bat in order to teach the player the combat system. It's justified because it's a major plot point.
- Quite a few table top games - whether role-playing games, war games, or board games, have a simplified level for a scenario which is explained in universe as an actual event.
- Space Hulk in its original table top incarnation and re-releases, as well as its 2014 video game incarnation, uses this trope for the Space Marine player. A campaign consists of a series of missions, and the campaign is designed to start with minimal mechanics and then add a new complication each subsequent mission.
- Paizo, producers of Pathfinder, released the Beginner's Box, which includes a sample adventure with a backstory. It is a well-crafted tutorial, with pregenerated characters and a simple set of encounters culminating in a very "gamey" final boss. Every encounter teaches the players one new idea, such as saves, skill checks, basics of combat, and so on. It provides the GM with the map for the encounter and every token to run the encounter as written.
- Not to be outdone, with the 2014 release of the fifth edition of Dungeons & Dragons, Wizards released a similar Starter Set with a beginner's adventure, though it is not quite as playable out-of-the-box.
- Games Workshop has had a series of introductory battles for their flagship products, Warhammer and Warhammer40000. These will invariably include a few neat minis from two factions, a history of the battle the set is meant to represent, rules for running the battles, and so on. As of early 2015, these boxed sets still prove to be popular sellers not just as a beginner's box, but also for their actual contents.
- Gears of War's tutorial involves your newly-released-from-prison veteran soldier taking the long way through the prison blocks to get back into shape and shake out the cobwebs. The sequel has you training the squad's rookie. Unique in these tutorials is that both are integrated into the gameplay and are skippable depending on the choice you make. The first game allows you to fight enemies along the way with either path you take, as the whole jail-break is merely the prologue to the rest of the game.
- In Second Sight, the second level (as the first is more of an Ontological Mystery introduction to the plot than anything else) sends the main character— a parapsychologist accompanying a team of commandoes as a consultant— through an obstacle course, in order to learn useful stealth and marksmanship strategies.
- Played with in Eat Lead: The Return of Matt Hazard. The tutorial is optional in the first level, and Matt, whose Medium Awareness and Genre Savvy are his defining traits, will actually comment on the tutorial, from mocking the very basics found in every third-person shooter to complimenting new wrinkles that will help him survive.
- In Dead Space, the enemies don't bat an eye at head shots or even outright decapitations like in most shooters; they're vulnerable to "strategic dismemberment" instead. In the opening phase of the game, expect no less than five direct messages, from blood-scrawled advice on the walls left by victims who learned it too late, to your own suit's holographic info display, to audiologs left by the crew, telling you in no uncertain terms to cut off their limbs.
- Dead Space 2 has a video log telling you you can rip the blades of dead necromorphs and shot them at living ones. The same video turns up in Dead Space 3, this time being sent to your colleges to help if they run out of ammo.
- Gun has some nice twists on the tutorial. The walking and shooting part is done by your father, who is generally kind of an asshole who doesn't think anyone is as awesome as he is. So everything is 'Do this, do that, don't do that'. The horse riding and shooting part is done by a genial shopkeeper/betting man who is actually pulling a delaying tactic so his friends can ride up and kill you for your free ticket to a whorehouse.
- Inverted in Star Wars Battlefront: Elite Squadron, as the optional tutorial level in campaign mode consists of X2, the protagonist, retraining existing clones.
- Transformers: Fall of Cybertron starts you off as Bumblebee. The tutorial is set up as events unfolding on the Ark while the Decepticons are raiding it. For example, testing the camra is Ratchet testing your optics after a concussion, and using the dash to avoid getting burned.
- Final Fantasy Tactics Advance starts off with the protagonist moving from a really warm climate to a new school in the winter. Right before being Trapped in Another World, the other kids teach him how to have a snowball fight, which happens to precisely mirror the combat system employed in the Magical Land he is about to be transported to.
- Final Fantasy Tactics A2 doesn't have Luso learn how to fight in his world. When he gets thrown into the Final Fantasy Ivalice, he lands in front of a huge Cockatrice and has to join Cid's clan in order to not die. Since Luso never used weapons and doesn't know how battles work, Cid teaches Luso how to attack, but strangely enough, also tells him how to "move" and end his turn. Even the Black Mage and White Mage tells Luso about other factors such as how to use magick (which is odd since only they can use magick at this point and Luso knows no abilities) and how speedier units generally go first.
- The original Final Fantasy Tactics has an interesting variation. There is no integrated tutorial and the game itself leaves you to figure out the basics mostly by yourself. However, there is an optional tutorial mode. The reason that's a variation of this trope is because, despite being optional and acanon, it features an actual character who is referenced several times in the main game, but who only appears in this mode—the instructor Darlavon, who teaches new military recruits all of the basics. The academy he teaches at is also the one the main character went to, so it stands to reason that Ramza received his lectures off-screen.
- In Fire Emblem 7, the player character is presented as an apprentice tactician, who is travelling the world to study military strategy. As such, the first third of the game is a tutorial, in a small story separate from that of the main game. The player is taught about the game's mechanics as they appear in the levels.
- Advance Wars had a whole tutorial campaign with Orange Star Chief CO Nell explaining most of the game in a series of fights against the invading Olaf. The real campaign picks up right after with Andy, who is a new CO that justifies every additional explanation or repetition. The later games instead had the tutorial during the first couple of missions in the campaign.
- Days of Ruin features Will, who before the world-destroying meteor strike was a student at the Rubinel military academy. Since he obviously didn't get to finish school, almost everything about the combat system needs to be explained to him- and, by extension, the player.
- Nippon Ichi occasionally justifies the use of tutorials.
- Disgaea: Hour of Darkness has Laharl waking up after oversleeping for 720 days, so his mind and body need a bit of a workout.
- Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories has Rozalin, who is a princess and obviously has no battle training at all, being given a crash course in fighting by Adell.
- Disgaea 3: Absence of Justice has Mao's butler Geoffery handling the tutorial like he does all the time for his master along with plenty of Lampshading and overly polite snark.
- Makai Kingdom has pre-transformation Zetta duke it out against Raiden and some mooks, and he mentions that he's mumbling to himself. You're also given the option to ignore it completely.
- Phantom Brave starts with a still alive Ash fighting off several enemies just to show the basics. When the game starts proper, you still have to sit through a few fights' worth of lessons regarding confining, lifting and throwing.
- La Pucelle Tactics has Sister Alouette teach Prier and Culotte the basics, because Prier is a very bad student.
- X Com Enemy Unknown has a stellar example with the tutorial mission, utilizing Central Officer Bradford as a way to teach the player about cover, attacking, grenades... and just how stupid it is to blunder into unseen space with the very last soldier on your squad, since only 1/4 of the soldiers on that mission survived it.
Wide Open Sandbox
- Every Ace Attorney game does this with its first case.
- For Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, the first case is Phoenix's first case as a lawyer, with his mentor and boss, Mia, showing him the ropes.
- Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Justice For All has Phoenix get amnesia from being clunked in the head, so his client must explain what he's supposed to do.
- Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Trials And Tribulations's first case is a flashback to Mia's second case - it had been a year since her first one, so the reasoning is that she doesn't remember how the court works very well.
- And with Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, it is again Apollo's first case with his mentor explaining how everything works.
- Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies doubles up on this - it's both Phoenix's first case after regaining his law license (and so he's a bit rusty), as well as new partner Athena's second case. This allows for the player to not only get taught the game mechanics, but also how Athena's psychoanalysis system works.
- In Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth, Edgeworth has to explain his methodology to the eternally clueless Detective Gumshoe and sighs dramatically when Gumshoe attempts to explain the court record to him.
- Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas has the tutorial sections slowly spread out throughout the game. Melee weapons are taught when you and an ally decide to go bust up a crack house, shooting when you visit a back-alley gun dealer, turf wars when Sweet enlists you to reconquer some lost territory, etc.
- You have to do the pilot school before you can access the piloting missions (or legally enter the airports at all). Doesn't quite work out when the piloting school is only defeated through trial-and-error, as the starter prop plane will stall if the player goes too high. Fridge Logic ensues when you begin to ask yourself: What kind of demented pilot test is your PC being forced through? What average pilot would need to know how to do a loop-the-loop or barrel roll? Or how to blow up moving trucks from an aircraft?
- Scarface: The World is Yours does this with a flashback to the character's military training in Cuba. Then the first level starts at the stairs in the mansion... Later on, a completely within-the-Fourth-Wall (if slightly leaning on it) conversation between Tony and two Vice cops establishes the Heat system.
- Saints Row 2 walks the player through a basic tutorial during the beginning prison break, and offers an alternative escape route in order to skip it.
- LittleBigPlanet's first area is. It's the garden where the king and queen teach you how to play. It's just a easy level with text bubbles popping up telling you how to do X. They're skippable.
- Sleeping Dogs teaches the player the ropes of the game's shooting mechanic via a forensic re-enactment of a crime scene.
- Shadow Of Mordor uses Talion training his son to fight and sneaking up on his wife to give her a gift and kiss to teach combat and stealth mechanics.
- The Final Fantasy VII fanfiction The Zor's Pizza Chronicles has the characters having to explain battle mechanics to an incompetent boss. "Hey, that didn't do any damage!" "That's because I'm wearing a fire ring. I'm protected from fire." "This is confusing!" "Look, lets try again some other time, okay? Besides, you're already dead." (Character looks at his hit points) "Damn. Well, I'll be back!"