A battle in a video game, often an RPG, that follows a script, either for a segment or for the entire thing, instead of acting like a regular battle. Often serves as an aversion of GameplayAndStorySegregation. If a battle is scripted in its entirety, it will often be either HopelessBossFight or ForegoneVictory, but the reverse is less likely: a battle whose outcome is predetermined may not care how you arrive at that outcome. A HopelessBossFight that immediately kills you on the first turn simply because the boss is so powerful can be an example, depending on how important the manner in which that's done is. A normal boss battle that scripts you to lose in the end is also HeadsIWinTailsYouLose.

Subtrope of ScriptedEvent.



[[folder:Video Game Examples]]
* The battle with Nyx at the end of ''VideoGame/{{Persona 3}}'' is scripted to portray the protagonist charging up his CombinedEnergyAttack [[spoiler: and HeroicSacrifice]].
* ''VideoGame/{{Persona 4}}'' has three examples:
** The first battle in the game is like this, with [[spoiler: the 'mysterious figure' being impossible to hit]]. The fight predictably ends after a few turns.
** [[spoiler: Shadow Rise]] will become invincible and taunt you for a few turns when you take off half her HP bar. Then she blasts you into oblivion. It's possible to deplete her HP if you're overpowered enough, but it still won't change the outcome.
** The final boss, [[spoiler: Izanami-no-Okami]], once [[spoiler: her]] HP reaches 0, [[spoiler: starts using a guaranteed instant-kill attack. Each of your party members in turn will knock you out of the way with their DivingSave ability and take the attack themselves, until you're the only one left. Then you get hit, a cutscene ensues in which you charge up your CombinedEnergyAttack, and you come back. Izanami gets several turns in a row to hit you with deadly attacks, which you shrug off, and when your turn comes, your only choice is to use the skill Myriad Truths and defeat her.]]
* ''VideoGame/DigitalDevilSaga'' has one between you and [[spoiler: Heat, where he pummels you in a ploy to get back Sera]]. Fortunately, he'll only beat you up so much, before the next cutscene happens.
* Many games have scripted tutorial battles.
** ''VideoGame/{{Disgaea|HourOfDarkness}}'' plays with this: Etna scripts the tutorial battle to make you lose.
--->'''Etna:''' That was an example of something ''not'' to do.
*** [[VideoGame/Disgaea2CursedMemories Rozalin]] and [[VideoGame/Disgaea3AbsenceOfJustice Mao]] both do the same thing. Notable for the latter as he winds up doing ''himself'' in.
* The third form of ''VideoGame/KingdomOfLoathing'''s Naughty Sorceress can take one of two paths depending on whether or not you have a certain item, and will either be a HopelessBossFight or a ForegoneVictory by the time you make it there. Either way, the battle consists of one entirely scripted attack (barring years' worth of SequenceBreaking).
** You automatically lose the first "fight" against Dr. Awkward, but after beating you up he [[TooDumbToLive drops an item with a convenient clue to help you defeat him.]] Naturally, [[YouShouldntKnowThisAlready even if you know the clue already]], [[ButThouMust you have to go through your scripted defeat before you can fight him properly.]]
** The special "Last Stand" ending of the War is mostly scripted. There's a lengthy written buildup to the battle, you make an irrelevant decision and use a single item, and then another giant text-dump explains how a DeusExMachina obliterates your opponents.
* ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'' does this quite a lot.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV''
** The fight with the king and queen of Elban proceeds normally until "the king and queen break free of their spells" and you have a long conversation in combat mode.
*** Several battles with Golbez in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV'' are entirely scripted. The first battle is between Golbez and Tellah, and the player never gains control. The second fight against Golbez is with a full party, but only starts proper after a few scripted turns. Also, the battle against Cecil's inner darkness isn't technically scripted, but the only way to advance is to [[SheatheYourSword sit there and do nothing]].
*** The battle with [[spoiler:TheManBehindTheMan Zemus]] is scripted, and an automatic win, but it just summons the FinalBoss. Also, during the FinalBoss fight, the only way to actually start the battle is to have Cecil use an item on him.
** The trend continues with ''The After Years''. There are several boss battles that are scripted. Including [[spoiler: The Creator, who continues to follow you throughout the escape of the final dungeon, but wriggles away after a few turns of punching himself]].
** The fight with Vargas in the beginning of ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI'' is a one-on-one battle. The only commands available to Sabin are Attack and Blitz, and you don't know how to use Blitz until a conversation when the battle's almost over, after which you defeat Vargas by using Raging Fist.
*** The third battle with Ultros in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI'' is a normal boss fight until Relm shows up, and then, after a conversation, you win the battle by having Relm use her Sketch ability to paint a picture of the boss.
*** Also in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI'', the first random encounters you come across in the World of Ruin have Sap and very low HP, so they tend to immediately die off on their own; this illustrates the bleak state of the new world.
** Cloud's last battle with Sephiroth in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' is lots of staring, multiple camera cuts, and one [[LimitBreak Omnislash]]. If you really want, you can just sit there, but [[DevelopersForesight the developers thought of that]], so Sephiroth will attack but Cloud will counter, ending the battle anyways.
** If you have Odin when you fight Seifer for the last time in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII'', he'll appear at the beginning of the battle and Seifer will kill him. Halfway through the battle, Gilgamesh will show up, grab Odin's sword, and defeat Seifer for you.
*** Also in this game, the FinalBattle with [[BigBad Ultimecia]]. When her HP drops to 0, she will not immediately die, and will continue to fight. Each attack that hits her from this point on, no matter how much damage or what status effects it inflicts, will only cause her to speak a few lines from her parting monologue. Once the player has attacked all the lines out of her, she finally dies.[[note]]However, it ''is'' possible to kill her before she starts her monologue, by hitting her with Selphie's ultimate LimitBreak The End, an exceedingly rare ability that will destroy literally every enemy on the battlefield. It's also possible to use The End after she begins her monologue, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iL0OOpeSWJU resulting in an absurdly anticlimactic defeat.]][[/note]]
** Beatrix and Kuja in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIX'' defeats your party instantly with a powerful attack once you drop their HP to zero or after a certain amount of time has passed and it is completely unavoidable. On top of this, they are still standing, despite everything you threw at them. [[spoiler: The only exception is the final battle against Kuja at the end of disc 3 since his lifespan is nearly at its end and he does collapse later on after the FinalBoss.]] This is to emphasize just how powerful these characters are, no matter how much LevelGrinding the player had done previously.
*** Similarly, the fight against the Masked Man in the very beginning advances the plot whether you win the battle or not since the fight was just a surprise training for the party.
** At one point in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'' Tidus faces a powerful enemy alone, until two other characters show up mid-battle and speak to him.
*** Once you beat [[spoiler:Braska's final aeon]], you proceed to fight [[spoiler:every single Aeon you had acquired throughout the game, then Yu Yevon himself.]] In these final battles, every character in your party is bestowed with permanent Auto-Life status, making it impossible to lose. The very last boss even damages ''himself'' more than you probably will.
*** The first random encounter after a new party member joins will always be scripted for the purpose of teaching the player how to use the new member's unique skills.
** In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyTactics'', scripted events are usually in the form of a HannibalLecture from the enemy, though in a few battles you can cause people to prematurely leave the battlefield.
* During the final battle of ''VideoGame/PaperMario'', at one point, the game cuts away to a secondary fight of Peach and Twink vs. Kammy. You control it like a normal battle, but each character has only one action, so there's only one path the battle can take.
** In ''VideoGame/SuperPaperMario'', in the final battle with Count Bleck, he's impervious to your attacks at first. After you hit him a few times, a cutscene occurs where Bowser, Peach, and Luigi return, and the Count becomes vulnerable. A similar stunt is done with [[spoiler:Super Dimentio]] afterward, with [[ExpositionFairy Tippi]] coming back in this case.
* ''Franchise/{{Metroid}}'':
** The Super Metroid at the end of ''VideoGame/SuperMetroid'' is unkillable and will usually capture you almost immediately, draining you to 1 energy before recognizing Samus and stopping. It is a storyline reminder of the creature's earlier encounter with Samus, and also serves to prime you for a way out of the following unwinnable battle with Mother Brain.
** The battle with Mother Brain also has a scripted segment, involving [[spoiler: the Super Metroid's HeroicSacrifice and Samus's MamaBear reaction with her new [[EleventhHourSuperpower Hyper Beam]]]].
*** However, if you haven't found enough Energy Tanks or skipped out most of the items via SequenceBreaking, it IS possible to actually lose the fight you're supposed to survive in.
** Similarly, in ''VideoGame/MetroidFusion'', the final boss is an Omega Metroid. You cannot harm it at all, and you must take a hit that automatically puts you with one health unit left. The Core-X arrives, becomes an SA-X, and fires Ice Beams at the Omega Metroid in an attempt to kill its natural enemy. After taking a few hits, the Omega Metroid reduces the SA-X into a Core-X again, giving Samus the opportunity to absorb it and regain all her health and the Ice Beam.
* ''Franchise/FireEmblem'' does this from time to time, such as ensuring that certain attacks hit or miss during ''Blazing Sword's'' tutorial segment, or forcing a critical hit so that someone is killed or injured in spectacular fashion. Some people usually hack the game to see what happens if there ''is'' no critical hit, or to break the script only to find that the game freezes.
* Every final boss in the ''VideoGame/{{MOTHER}}'' series. [[VideoGame/MOTHER1 The first game]] had you sing to win, [[VideoGame/EarthBound the second game]] had you pray, and [[VideoGame/{{Mother 3}} the third game]] simply had you do nothing (well, except for guarding and healing yourself) until the battle ended.
** ''[=EarthBound=]'' has a segment where Poo meditates before heading to meet the rest of the party. This takes place in a "battle" where the enemy systematically takes Poo's limbs and senses. You emerge completely fine, with a rather nice level up, despite being reduced to 0 HP during the sequence, which normally would invoke a GameOver.
* In ''VideoGame/TheForceUnleashed'' the end of every boss battle (as well as fights against Imperial Walkers) is scripted out with {{Quicktime Event}}s. The main reason is so that you can be even more badass than usual; seriously, jumping onto a walker's head, stabbing through the windshield with a lightsaber, zapping the bejeezus out of it, then taking a flying leap away and crushing the whole thing into a tiny ball? [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome Holy crap.]]
* The final boss in ''VideoGame/MarioAndLuigiPartnersInTime'' is this, with only Shrowser (the boss) getting to attack, Mario and Luigi having to dodge and each dodged attack hurting Shrowser/ghost Princess Shroob.
* The original ''VideoGame/{{Persona}}'' had segments where your friends would get their Personas for the first time. They look like standard battles on the surface, but they're deliberately designed so that [[ForegoneVictory your party members get away]] [[FlawlessVictory without a scratch]]. Everyone also gets a free level-up in the process, regardless of how many EXP you would get from fighting the enemy party in an actual battle.
%%* ''Penny Arcade OTRSPOD ep II'' has one and lampshades it.
* Technically one could probably count the [[PressXToNotDie QTE]] battle with Krauser in ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil4''.
* ''VideoGame/DynastyWarriors'', ''VideoGame/SamuraiWarriors'', and ''VideoGame/WarriorsOrochi'' are rife with scripted events that can be either triggered or prevented depending on the circumstance.
* ''VideoGame/BaldursGate'': The first time you encounter Sarevok, Gorion covers for your retreat by engaging him and his minions. In an interesting variation of the trope, only half of the battle is scripted. No matter how effective Gorion's attacks are or how ineffective Saverok's attack are, the former will always be killed by the latter (even if Saverok is in between attacks). Whether or not Gorion manages to kill any of Saverok's minions is not scripted so their deaths are variable.
** Later in the game, there's another such battle with Sarevok. While you're in the city of Baldur's Gate, you encounter him and his minions at a palace party event (or something... it's been a while), and no matter how well you fight, you can't kill him. He can kill you, however, so you can either lose or die, but not win. The battle isn't scripted in the sense that anything specific happens during the fight, but at the end, the script is that Sarevok and pals walk away.
** Specifically, Sarevok is scripted to attack the PC for 15 seconds, while the other members of his band slaughter as many guests as possible. It is possible to lose the game 2 ways here. If either the PC dies, or if the lord the PC is supposed to protect dies.
* In ''VideoGame/TheNightmareBeforeChristmasOogiesRevenge'', the final boss has a scripted RhythmGame section after the first, standard battle. While all the bosses allow you to play a RhythmGame in order to deal extra damage, the final boss makes it mandatory and you can't beat the game without going through it
* The "first" battle of ''VideoGame/HyperdimensionNeptunia'' is Neptune receiving ''all of the {{Limit Break}}s'' of [[UsefulNotes/PlayStation3 the]] [[UsefulNotes/XBox360 three]] [[UsefulNotes/{{Wii}} goddesses]].
** This gets played again in ''VideoGame/HyperdimensionNeptuniaV'' where Neptune still gets hit with all the LimitBreak attacks of the other three goddesses. [[CrowningMomentOfFunny Only to find out that the entire sequence was the four goddesses playing a video game.]]
* In ''VideoGame/GoldenSun: The Lost Age'', a scene plays out where Isaac and Ivan fight against Agatio Karst in the Jupiter Lighthouse. You get to watch a battle scene take place where Ivan is already down and Agatio downs Isaac with powerful Psynergy. Even though the scene takes place on a battle screen, you don't get to control Isaac or Ivan but you do get to fight the antagonists a few minutes later with your own party.
** And when you do get to fight the pair, the beginning of the fight is scripted. The battle starts with just Felix and Piers in your party and after two turns have passed, Jenna is shown walking in and then joining in on the fight. After another two turns, Sheba shows up and joins in as well. The script here ends and the battle proceeds as normal.
* The final level of ''VideoGame/AceCombatAssaultHorizon'' is this entirely (and there are various other examples in the game before that.) It doesn't matter how many missiles you cram up the final boss' PAK-FA fighter plane, the game forces you to play out the scripted dialogue for the mission. Any form of ScriptBreaking the level results in you failing it because it'll give the proper conditions for the boss to win. In fact, you have to keep fighting him just because that's the only way to advance the script.
* [[spoiler:Harbinger]] at the end of ''VideoGame/MassEffect3''.
* The ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWars'' series regularly uses these to reenact scenes from anime or otherwise advance the plot. It's very common for a unit to be crippled at the beginning of a stage, leaving it with just a fraction of its HP and unable to move.
* The Handsome Men in ''VideoGame/{{Killer7}}''. The fight takes place as a series of one-on-one duels between the members, and the Handsome Men only attack when you do, meaning that the same characters win every time (and the final match between Garcian and Handsome Pink is interrupted by a cutscene.)
* ''VideoGame/PokemonTradingCardGame'' starts you off with a tutorial match where each player's deck is stacked, and gives you step-by-step instructions on what to do to win.

[[folder:Non-Video Game Examples]]
* ''Roleplay/DestroyTheGodmodder'': The entire fight against the [=ACNTT=] in the end of the first game, and in fact a lot of other story events, as it would be pretty hard to continue the game if the players somehow game overed, considering it takes days to get through small events.