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Sequence Breaking
aka: Sequence Break

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Thinking outside the box.

"Take THAT, logical progression of puzzles!"
Weaver, Ruby Quest

When a game's development team is designing a game, they often form some specific ideas as to the path the player should take when completing the game. Other ways to progress are usually restricted either by simply not supplying any other options or by placing some sort of impenetrable obstacle in the way of what would otherwise be a valid path. In these ways a path through the game is created. This path manifests to the player as The One True Sequence in which tasks need to be completed.

Sometimes, fans of a game develop ways to complete tasks in an unexpected order, or skip some entirely, contrary to the developer's intentions. Such acts and the attempts to discover them are known as Sequence Breaking.

The act of sequence breaking is accomplished in many different ways. Sometimes, the player exploits a glitch or a bug in the game's programming. Other times they play within the intended boundaries, but still manage to accomplish something intended to be impossible (for instance, jumping a fence using an unforeseen combination of abilities and careful timing).


Or you could do it completely by accident. Luckily, this tends to have little effect on the game's story or progress, and you can usually go back and do what you missed.

Some games eschew the linear path design and opt for a more freeform style, like the Wide Open Sandbox. These games are more resistant to forming Sequence Breaker communities in the fan base, and normally don't get them at all simply because there is no sequence to break. Still other games give a primary "intended" path for the player to follow, but provide for players that explore every nook and cranny, so that the more thorough and adventurous players will find alternative paths that allow early access to certain rewards.

The phrase Sequence Breaking is most often applied in the context of the Metroid fanbase, who coined the term. The term has since been applied to many other fanbases of other games.


This is a subtrope of Emergent Gameplay, and sometimes of Not the Intended Use. Contrast Script Breaking, which is often done via Sequence Breaking. Sequence breaking may involve the Dungeon Bypass, which is one typical way of breaking the sequence. Also contrast You Can't Thwart Stage One, which is often literally true even in games that allow sequence breaking; even Metroidvanias famous for sequence-breaking opportunities generally require that the first area be traversed or the first item be collected. Compare Speedrun, which most times involves sequence-breaking. If the game recognizes your attempt in some fashion, then there's Developers' Foresight.

This should not be confused with Easy Level Trick, which is an exploit that makes a lot easier a level that otherwise would be complex, slow or hard. Although a sequence breaker might and will be an easy level trick, not all of the easy level tricks result in sequence breaking. In the image above portrayed as an example, a GPS tracking the right path inside the maze will be an easy level trick, but won't break the intended sequence.

Note: We Are Not GameFAQs. Details about specific instances belong there, not here.


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    Action Adventure Games 
  • Aquaria, an independent Metroidvania, has this in a few different spots: first, the Beast form allows the protagonist to swim through heavy currents, providing access to other zones. A combination of food and wall-swimming, however, made it possible to get to the upper part of the ocean (the Veil) before even acquiring said form. Second, in earlier versions of the game it was possible to head to the penultimate area of the game before Li was trapped there; freeing him before this happened resulted in the story becoming completely broken from that point on, as he was subsequently sealed away forever. (Not that some tropers would care.)
    • In earlier versions of the game, it was possible to skip the Sun Temple by simply wall-jumping up the mountain it's contained within, breaking into the boss chamber. Doing so wouldn't let you get the best ending, though.
  • Axiom Verge: Since the game is a Metroidvania made in obvious tribute to Metroid and Super Metroid and has an explicit Speedrun mode, it was expected that runners would find some sequence breaks, and they did. The largest sequence break involves abusing Mercy Invincibility to squeeze through part of the Breach in Edin that can only be properly cleared out with the Address Bomb, making the path to getting that item completely unnecessary.
  • Not only can you sequence break in Batman: Arkham Asylum if you know what you're doing, but the Joker NOTICES you doing it and calls you out in a spectacular bit of fourth wall breakage.
  • In Bunny Must Die! Chelsea and the 7 Devils, you can beat the game without the Gears. Without the Gears, you cannot turn around and walk to the right.note  Seriously. And Chelsea can get the Green Orb in the final area in a very early point of the game. In fact, Chelsea can get almost every item in the game before her third boss fight.
    • The first boss fight can be skipped. If you fight her later, she'll be very upset at your sequence breaking and fight you much more viciously, with stronger and faster attacks.
  • Castlevania:
    • In Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow, it is possible, using the New Game Plus and a few glitches, to skip almost the ENTIRE game and beat the final boss just a few minutes after the beginning. This results in some bizarre events in cutscenes, even more so if you decide to go and explore around the Castle after beating the game.
      • One of the special attacks involves teleporting a short distance, backstabbing an enemy, and teleporting back. This works through walls, so it can be used to press switches which normally must be reached from the other side. Alucard gets this power tool in Julius Mode. Combining this with the Succubus Soul can further increase the prospects for breaking sequence, as activating the soul during the teleport will stop you from teleporting back.
    • Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow:
      • The Flying Armor soul slows you down as you fall through the air, letting you cross large gaps. It has other uses as well, such as giving you access to the walk-on-water soul without having to fight the boss before it.
      • Speaking of walking on water, you're not supposed to be able to reach the Floating Gardens OR the Clocktower without this soul as you need it and the double jump to reach the ledge. In actuality it is possible to reach with just the double-jump, giving you early access to powerful weapons and a buttload of experience provided you can handle the nastily overpowered enemies.
    • In Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin, it is also possible to completely skip at least one cutscene using a jumping glitch. Also, using the Suspend Mode Glitch will allow you to skip all the way to the Throne Room, if you properly execute things. Granted unless you get the right equipment, it's REALLY hard.
      • There's also the partner double jump glitch that lets you get to places that you normally need the double jump for early.
    • In Castlevania: Circle of the Moon, the 7th level is the Underground Waterway, which has poisoned water. That can be avoided with a purifier obtained in the previous level. However, you can access the Waterway as early as the 4th level and complete it, as long as you have plenty of potions.
      • Or a card combination that causes you to heal from taking poison damage. Most notable in Magician mode, where you start with all the cards.
    • In Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance, The Sacred Fist + Ice Book combo gives you a few extra pixels of height if you activate it at the height of a jump. This will allow you to get access to several items early, and access to the entrance gateway between Castle A and B, although you can't use the gate until you meet Death in the Clock Tower gateway. At that point, however, you can warp to the entrance and get the lure key much easier, allowing for early access to the Castle A versions of the treasury, in addition to experience point-rich sections of Castle B.
    • Even in the original NES Castlevania game, it was possible to jump into enemies and use the collision kickback to throw you over obstacles or onto platforms that you shouldn't be able to reach, allowing you to skip entire rooms' worth of platforming.
      • This type of sequence breaking is still present in later games in the series, though not to the same extent as they're more about exploration.
    • An example in Castlevania: Symphony of the Night that may possibly have been intended: Once you get the Soul Of Wolf in the Outer Wall, you can use it to get across the crumbling platforms in the Clock Tower and and then traverse it normally, albeit in reverse, to get to what would normally be the final area of the castle. The timing is VERY strict, however, and likely takes multiple tries. You still, however, need to explore the rest of the castle to actually fight the boss, as the stairs are out.
    • Castlevania: Harmony of Despair has a couple of these. Levels have an intended order that you'll rarely see followed perfectly. Raised platforms can be reached by drop kicking off of other people, enemies, or a Yorick skull (which can let you get absurdly high with proper timing.) The DLC mission that takes place in the original 8-bit castle can also be skipped pretty much entirely with a glitch.
  • Enter the Matrix:
    • One level has you evading an army of Smith clones around a city. However the entire level can be bypassed simply by heading right at the start of the level instead of left, as the game tells you. Can save you from a great deal of heartache.
    • In the office building level you have to navigate the outside of the building on the construction frame. When you reach a specific part the game spawns a Agent Smith dropping down in front of you and breaks the platform you're standing on. But if you are in the middle of a wall-run your character continues the wall run, watches Smith break the platform before reaching the next platform. Doing so allows you to skip the rest of that part of the level, since no Agent Smiths spawn.
    • In the same level, if you simply charge the first Agent that drops down in front of you and do a specific (but short, only 3 moves) string of moves, you'll force the Agent into a knockback animation that sends him falling into a pit he has no way out of. You can then take a leisurely stroll through the rest of the level.
    • Not exactly a gameplay tactic, but sequence breaking is the general idea behind "the back-doors of the Matrix." This use of it is perhaps best illustrated by the Keymaker's Deus ex Machina entrance at the end of the Sewers sequence.

  • The Metroid series is a sequence breaker's paradise, and even has its own subpage related to it.
  • Ori and the Blind Forest has many sequence breaks to be exploited by speedrunners. Notably, an early one involving a tricky Wall Jump near the Map Stone in Hollow Grove allows you to skip to the Moon Grotto and bypass the first half of Thornfelt Swamp. Oddly, you still get the cutscene of Gumo stealing the Water Vein from the Ginso Tree despite you already having it. Even better, with some fancy Bash maneuvers, you can get up the shaft to Sorrow Pass without the aid of wind currents, bypassing the Misty Woods and Forlorn Ruins completely. The winds in Sorrow Pass itself will still be active despite you having never visited the Ruins, but you'll miss out on the Wall Crawl skill learned in the Woods, making some jumping puzzles more difficult. Exploiting a saved game glitch at the summit of Sorrow Pass allows you to skip to the final Escape Sequence.
  • Rabi-Ribi, a Taiwanese Metroidvania/Bullet Hell hybrid, runs on this trope. Sequence breaking is not only possible, but encouraged. There are many hidden techniques that enable you to reach places that you wouldn't otherwise be able to without certain items. For instance, it's possible to wall jump without the wall jump item. There are many achievements available for doing things out of order, and the entire game can be completed without picking up a single item, including your primary melee weapon!
  • In Star Control 2, you can explore the galaxy, meeting new aliens, doing quests for them, and collect important artifacts from them, which you need to defeat the Big Bads. Or you can wait until the Kohr-Ah start killing everyone and just loot the deserted homeworlds. This was probably intentional.
    • Another, much more difficult sequence break: you are supposed to ally with the Earth Starbase first thing in the game. The creators' way of enforcing this was to spawn a Slylandro Probe every day you spend in Hyperspace before you do. If you're good enough, though, you can pick up Fwiffo, use him to kill Probes, fly over to the Pkunk for their gift of ships, and spend the rest of the game relying on gifted ships and milking the Pkunk's resurrection for crew, all while your flagship has the speed and maneuerability of a one-legged cow. You can play all the way up to freeing the Chmmr, at which point the game crashes because it automatically brings you to the Starbase. The Ur-Quan Masters rerelease fixes the crash at this point, allowing you to win the game this way.
      • To elaborate on how hard this is: Not only are you limited to the slowest possible speed with no ship upgrades (meaning it is impossible to outrun anything, so you have to fight every single probe and enemy, and that if your only planetary lander gets destroyed you're screwed up big time), you also have no ability to escape a fight. This has further side effects, such as forcing you to find about the Deep Children from someone other then the Mycon, since they will attack you in an inescapable and unwinnable fight every time you visit.
  • Tails Adventure can be finished without the Wrench. But then you won't be able to backtrack through the final stage, unless you have the Teleport item.
  • In Little Big Adventure, the main character is required to break into a museum, while it is closed, through a sewer entrance, which can only be opened from inside the museum. In order to do that, the player must first retrieve a key card which allows them to enter the museum from a side entrance. Attempting to enter the museum from the front entrance will result in the character being arrested. However, a fast enough player can avoid the guard and reach the sewer entrance before being arrested, thus being able to break into the museum without ever obtaining the key card. This will cause the script to break - the red key card, which is needed again much later in the game, will become unobtainable - thus rendering the game unwinnable.
    • And in the sequel, it's possible to take the ferry which you shouldn't be able to do until it stops raining. You can end up doing things in a very convoluted order, and people end up in two places at once.
      • The sequel also contains a relatively minor sequence break when you're in the Zeelich Undergas; mainly because it's a flaw in the linear storytelling that makes an entire island unintentionally optional. After obtaining the Mosquibee's key fragment, you're told by a nearby Mosquibee to go to the Island of the Volcano so that you can learn the location of their captured queen from a couple Mosquibees in hiding there. The thing is, if you know where the queen is imprisoned already, you do not need to go to Volcano Island to learn the location. You can literally just skip having to go to Volcano Island altogether and just head straight for the building the queen is jailed in.

    Action RPGs 
  • Boktai 2 has the Dream Avenue Bonus Dungeon which normally can't be accessed until you defeat the Spiral Tower and reaquire a projectile weapon to open the gate. However the Devs forgot that Coffin Monster Elephan has a weak projectile and can be purchased as early as beating the second dungeon. Provided you can survive Dream Avenue's brutally overlevelled enemies (which are overlevelled even when you're supposed to be there), you'll come out with a metric buttload of EXP and powerful weaponry and tear effortlessly through the next few dungeons.
  • Dust: An Elysian Tail, an indie Metroidvania Action RPG, doesn't let the player progress through the plot ahead of time, but certain treasures that would normally require abilities from later areas to be reached can be collected much earlier than intended by design. In particular, the Aerial Dust Storm ability from the first area, if used on airborne enemies, can let Dust propel towards some very high platforms long before obtaining Double Jump or Boost Jump. Certain melee combos also allow Dust to stay in the air for a few moments after a jump, which can be used to bypass some of the Double Jump-requiring puzzles that have no enemies nearby.
  • While Kingdom Hearts doesn't require you to go the worlds in the order recommended by the game, it's actually a little less linear than it would appear. When you get the Gummi ship, you can start the events at the Coliseum or go to Wonderland and do the events there, and the game recommends that you go to Wonderland first judging by its one star battle level. But then the third world shows up, and it's Deep Jungle, so naturally the game recommends that you complete it after the Coliseum. But fans of the game will tell you that it's actually easier to do Deep Jungle before the initial events at the Coliseum, despite Deep Jungle being labeled as a higher battle level. After that, you need to go to Traverse Town again and seal its keyhole while Cid upgrades the ship as the Disc-One Final Dungeon. After that you are only really required to beat Agrabah and Neverland before Hollow Bastion, where the game sort of railroads you until the end.
    • Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, however, most likely is the only game in which you aren't specifically told to play the episodes in any order, but if you play them in a specific order, you won't be asking yourself "...when did that happen?". The series director even recommends the Terra-Ventus-Aqua order, to get a better understanding of the story, because Ventus's campaign refers to stuff that happened before in Terra's, Aqua's campaign refers to stuff that happened before in Ventus and Terra's campaigns, and the final chapter is played as Aqua.
    • Kingdom Hearts II features the return of an early sequence break - despite being harder (on Proud mode, at least), it's recommended by fans that you go straight to Beast's castle after the first Twilight Town because you gain Cure - whereas you don't in the Land of Dragons (which is recommended as the next world.)
  • Overlord has a minor example, in that the entire middle three areas of the game can be taken out of sequence. Difficulty curve and powerup distribution show the player is intended to complete half of Evernight (getting the green minions), half of Heaven's Peak (getting the blue minions and access to mid-game equipment), complete Evernight, complete Heaven's Peak, then move on to the Dwarven Lands. However, the game's Broken Bridges require the right minion type to beat - and only the right minion type. Thus, a player can complete up to a quarter of the way through Heaven's peak (thus getting the blue minions), then go through the rest of Evernight and the Dwarven Lands on skill alone before making Heaven's Peak an absolute cakewalk with the late-game spells and equipment the player can find.
  • In Ys VI, it may be possible to do Limewater Cave before the Ruins, if you're leveled up enough. You need to really be leveled up to defeat Piana-Pius, who guards the object needed to defeat the Goddamned Bats in the second half of the dungeon. There's also the shadow creatures, which you need the Rainbow Fragment to defeat, although they can be avoided (except on Nightmare, where the boss generates them).
    • In I and II, once you get the Treasure Box Key from the first half of the Shrine, you can unlock the chests in the Mine, if you're brave enough, and if you get the level 3 equipment early (by Money Grinding), though the monsters may still be too strong), and maybe complete the dungeon before the rest of the Shrine.
  • Early in Secret of Mana, you can get to Gaia's Navel before you visit the water palace by using Cannon Travel twice. From there you can continue on or travel from Gaia's Navel to Pandora. Doing the latter can lead to a slightly different sequence of events where the girl joins your party later than she normally does. However, you must return to the One True Sequence before you defeat Spikey Tiger, or Undine's cave will never become unsealed and you will have to restart your game.

    Adventure Games 
  • Gone Home can be completed in under two minutes with prior knowledge or blind luck, and probably under ten by a very thorough player: the key to the final room is hidden behind a fake wall in the home's parlor, almost directly opposite the front door which prompts players to open it when looked at. The ease with which players could inadvertently beat the game and skip the entire story led to a parody game.
  • In Rhem 2, when you first find the artifact, it is locked in place with a special pattern lock. Entering the wrong pattern dumps you in a cell, where a mysterious woman takes your swipe card. However, since the pattern doesn't change, if you enter the pattern correctly the first time, the artifact will be released, and you can actually leave with the artifact, which is not supposed to be possible. (The goal is only to get a photo of the artifact, which is what your employer claims, even if you have the artifact itself.)
  • In some ports of Maniac Mansion, the default code to Dr. Fred's lab is 0000 (until Fred resets it by playing Meteor Mess). So, all you'd have to do is get one kid (for example, Dave) sent to the dungeon with the glowing key and opening the door, use another to summon assistance (Syd/Razor with Green Tentacle, Wendy with the manuscript and publishing contract, Michael with Ed's plans, Bernard summoning the Meteor Police), and solve the game in about half the time.
  • In the game sequel to Below the Root, there were hostile NPCs on the map who would "kidnap" the character and send them to their organization's prison house. As you lost no time getting kidnapped, the houses were relatively easy to break out of with the right tool (the Nekom house contained the best escape tool in the game), and the houses were close to strategic locations in the game, getting "captured" could be an effective form of rapid transit.

    Beat Em Ups 
  • In the final battle of the arcade version of Double Dragon, Willy sits on top of a wall and sends Mooks after you, only attacking when they're all defeated. However, if you lure Abobo to the wall and let him suplex you, you'll end up on top of the wall and can launch a preemptive attack on Willy - he can't attack until he falls off the wall. Defeating him while he still has mooks makes them run away. Have some proof.
  • In Battletoads, level 10, "Rat Race," can be skipped almost entirely by dash-ramming the rat two times after getting rid of the bomb, but before the rat leaves.

  • In the Apple ][ and Commodore 64 game Snooper Troops, the clues never change, so it is possible to collect all of the appropriate clues, start a fresh game, and accuse the correct suspect as quickly as you can type in the clue numbers. Allowing for loading times, this should take about one minute.
  • The first leg of Cluefinders 4th Grade required a Fetch Quest: twelve cairoglyphs in exchange for translating a clue on a scroll. The scroll contained five clues in rhymed couplets; the first four would always be the same and lead you to the statue adjacent to the antique shop where the scroll is being translated. The fifth clue would tell you how to open the secret chamber behind the statue, and it would be different each time. But once you realize the patterns the final clue tends to take, you can skip all of Cairo's fetch quests, mess around with the statue and solve the secret chamber puzzle early.

    First Person Shooters 
  • BioShock:
    • It is possible to play through BioShock without getting the Incinerate! plasmid. If you're very fast and lucky, you can hit a flaming trashcan downstairs and use it to melt the ice in the basement of the Medical Pavilion before it stops burning. The ice in Fountain Fisheries can be solved by telekinesising along a corpse with exploding buck, and then looting it after your weapons are confiscated.
    • In both games, any door with a combination lock can be unlocked at any time if you remember the code. This doesn't cut down on exploring as much as you'd think; you can't get the Lot 192 from Fontaine's apartment until you've visited Suchong's to find out what it's for, and the Fishbowl Diner is already on the way to Pauper's Drop. But the code to pass to the second half of Siren Alley in BioShock 2, which is also the easiest of all to remember, lets you bypass the Pink Pearl completely, including the boss fight with Daniel Wales.
  • The player is able to skip nearly the entirety of Blood's E3M3 by simply saving up jump boots from the previous map and using them to climb a ledge near the beginning of the map.
  • In Borderlands 2 you can, with some creativity, kill certain bosses before their introductory cutscene happens, as this video will show, but the game may take offense to your shenanigans if you do.
  • One of the easier ways to beat the Modern Warfare 2 spec ops level "Wetwork" is through a speed run where you throw flashbangs to disorient the enemy while you sprint past. When you reach the end, in the room where you need to breach the final room, the game will have reached its limit of enemies and so won't spawn any. As soon as you blow the door open, you win.
  • Most of the levels in Serious Sam - The First Encounter and The Second Encounter are out in the open. It's often possible to Rocket Jump over walls and triggers, leaving you with little to fight. In City of the Gods in Second Encounter, the player can even ram into one of the walls and fly to the exit of the level through interlevelic medium. Many of these glitches are very often used in multiplayer and it's not considered very entertaining by others.
  • The Doom II level Dead Simple required you to kill every enemy to exit. One notable speedrunner (Drew "stx-Vile" DeVore) proved that you could use the rocket launcher to propel yourself onto the exit switch, meaning you could complete the level with 0 kills.
    • In the original games, the player was unable to jump normally, and maps were designed with this in mind. Source ports that add jumping therefore allow you to skip large parts of multiple maps (in the case of the above Dead Simple, the entire map; same with Ballistyx, a TNT: Evilution map that's otherwise very long and challenging) just by jumping.
    • Similarly, any source port that adds vertical mouselook makes it possible to defeat the final boss in a matter of seconds, as the only thing making it difficult was the inability to aim vertically.
    • Some maps require you to find all three colored keys in sequence to open up the path to the exit, but in some of these cases, the obstacles you need the keys for are set up in such a way that you can walk past one of them without its key.
    • Famously, the original Doom engine doesn't deal elegantly with heights and switch surfaces. In several levels this can be abused by hitting switches way before you're meant to, and in one level it allows you to start, turn around, and activate the exit switch by "using" the air.
  • Various levels of Duke Nukem 3D can be defeated earlier than intended by exploiting glitches that allow you to, among other things, warp into rooms that overlap one another, crawl through spaces that are normally too small for anyone but a shrunken player to walk through, and pass through certain barriers. Even without using those, however, "Hotel Hell" (episode 3, level 8) can be completed just by throwing a Pipe Bomb through the crack at the beginning and setting it off, opening immediate access to the exit. (See this site for more information.)
    • Also, generally the only levels designed with the jetpack in mind were the levels which contain a jetpack, not the levels after them. Though this isn't too bad, since there's only a few places in the game where you do get it (unless you use cheat codes), the jetpack in the hidden level from episode one can be used to skip the first half of the final level because it relies on a sequence of earthquake setpieces which each lower the terrain around the next trigger to somewhere you could reach on foot (and moreover on a lot of ledges overlooking the same area, so reaching any place you want is trivial). This may have been intentional, though, since it does require you to find and beat a secret penultimate level.
    • Also, many buttons can be pressed from the wrong side of a wall, and in many cases the mere act of jumping on top of an enemy can get one the boost needed to surpass the bulk of a level.
  • Halo has a lot of this (careful though, sequence breaking in the wrong place can render a mission Unwinnable):
    • Halo: Combat Evolved has a major sequence break in the "Assault on the Control Room" level. In a stage about halfway through the level, one can get a Banshee fighter by knocking it off of a ledge with the rocket launcher. If you then fight through the following levels past the exit of the underground complex, you can then use the Banshee to fly up to the center column, where a new Banshee can be gotten to replace the (usually) now-damaged first one (even if you don't need it, you want to go get it to keep from being attacked by it as you pass and trigger that opponent). From there, you can fly over the following map sections to the one where you would normally have to proceed on foot underground; if you instead fly up to the overhead bridges, you can then enter at a much later part of the game, and because the triggers for the opponents have been bypassed, the following scenes will now be empty and you can simply proceed to the end on yet another Banshee that appears as you enter the last group of maps.
      • In the remake, Halo: Combat Evolved: Anniversary, you get an achievement for stealing the Banshee.
      • This trick is also used to find the "Siege of Madrigal" Easter Egg music.
    • More Combat Evolved sequence breaks:
      • It's possible to jump off the bridge in the latter part of "Assault on the Control Room" and onto the large buttress that runs up the front of the Forerunner shrine that houses the control room, allowing you to skip a decent chunk of the level. You can either walk down the bridge to where the mortar tanks and ghosts are, or walk up it and slide down the side to land yourself in front of the door to the control room.
      • From the self-same "Assault on the Control Room" bridge, you can also destroy the Covenant mortar-tanks below you, before you're forced to face them, from relative safety (it's very hard for them to get an angle on you: the bridge is in the way). You can eventually kill those mortar tanks by just shooting them repeatedly with small-arms, like the plasma pistols and rifles dropped by all the Covenant you just killed.
      • Really, most of the on-line community for CE had at least some interest in and experience with sequence breaking (and pulling off stunts and pushing the game to its limits in general). It's likely that most experienced players spent at least some time on this, and it was probably one of the major sources of replay value in the game.
    • In Halo 2, Bungie cracked down on sequence breaking with instant-kill Invisible Walls, but there were many routes left open for sequence breakers:
      • "Outskirts": The sniper alley and much of the courtyard battle could be bypassed by jumping from a little pile of rubble in an easily missed corner to a ledge, and from there to the roof-tops. Even better is that some players are good enough to hijack one of the Banshees and go flying over the level, in which you can find a giant soccer ball and a Scarab Gun.
      • "Delta Halo": The first battle, where you're supposed to neutralize the artillery, can be mostly bypassed without glitches or special tricks, although you don't get a Warthog if you do so, not that it matters much. There are also two spots in the mission where you can shortcut over hills that seem to be unclimbable, this allows you to skip the "Nothing But Jackal" sniper canyon.
      • "The Oracle": You can skip the Flood-o-vator ride by running around the small ledges on the sides of the shaft, although there is a death trigger that moves with the elevator, preventing you from doing it too soon.
      • "Metropolis": Take the Hog instead of the tank, it allows you to skip the Banshees and Wraiths during the bridge sequence. You can even squeeze the warthog through the tunnel into the sniper courtyard. Although it's better to switch to Sgt. Stacker's Gauss Hog there.
      • "The Great Journey": It's possible to get a Banshee into the final boss fight by squeezing it through the corridor leading to it, getting out at the right place and entering the boss' room, then going back and getting into it. This makes the final battle much easier, even on the highest difficulty. The same banshee trick is also possible by flying a banshee into a specific point on the building from the outside, which triggers the cutscene before the final boss and allows you to skip a few enemies before the final boss, and puts the banshee in the hallway before the boss after the cutscene is over.
    • In Halo: Reach, the last quarter of the third mission, "Nightfall", can be skipped using some clever vehicle placement. By taking the nearby forklift, and parking it with its driver side against the door that requires Jun's code to open, the "exiting vehicle" animation will carry the player right through the door; since no enemies will have spawned, it is a leisurely stroll to the level exit.
  • The original Deus Ex was made with this in mind, to the point that the developers put in deliberate examples:
    • The very first mission (Liberty Island) can be skipped by picking up the gas grenade on the pile of containers just north of the entrance to the pier, lobbing it at the front door of UNATCO and running past the soldier who opens the door to investigate. Even better, the game acknowledges the player's ingenuity via a remark from the guard manning the retinal scanner. Alternatively, you can use the "LAM stairway" trick to climb up the side of the statue, or the double-grenade jumping trick to propel yourself all the way to the top in seconds.
    • It's possible to skip the Castle Clinton mission by either sneaking past the terrorists (or deliberately blowing up the explosives) in the subway station and boarding the train.
    • The encounter (and subsequent boss battle) with Anna Navarre in the Battery Park subway station and UNATCO can be skipped by killing the character in question at the Airfield, at a point where players will likely assume said character has Story-Driven Invulnerability.
    • The entire MJ12 lab underneath UNATCO can be skipped if the player already knows the code to the exit, despite the fact that Daedalus won't tell it to you until you meet Paul or retrieve the datavault from his corpse.
    • The entire Hong Kong section can be skipped if the player knows the codes to the Versalife building (including the lab housing the Universal Constructor). Likewise, the entire Maggie Chow quest that she sends you on can be skipped by breaking into her apartment, knowing where the Dragon's Tooth Sword and stealing it immediately. There was an attempt to avert sequence breaking (the code leading to Tracer Tong's lab can't be hacked, and there is no code for it, until Max Chen is notified of Chow's deceit), but this can easily be circumvented by the aforementioned Versalife bypass.
    • At the beginning of the Vandenberg level, you can skip the entire first third of the mission by walking to the roof's edge and tossing a scramble grenade at the heavy security robot walking towards the front door, which causes it to take out the other three security bots and all of the commandos in the area.
    • At the Missile Silo, you can skip the entire mission by utilizing an exploit. Run around the perimeter and face downwards at the hatch leading down into the silo, have a Light Anti-Tank Weapon and point it downwards at a specific angle, then fire. This kills Howard Strong, the final enemy in the area, and skips the process of arming and redirecting the missile entirely.
    • An unintentional example occurs at the end of the game. It's possible to get the New Dark Age ending early by going to Sector 3 in Area 51 and into the antimatter reactor (which is normally required to get a code for access to the Aquinas Hub). Due to the way a switch cover was implemented, it's possible to crouch down in front of a console and click a switch that opens the antimatter valve shut-offs. Doing this causes the ending sequence to kick in without doing all the later steps for Helios.
  • Half-Life:
    • Half-Life (first game):
      • An example of sequence breaking used in a speedrun: in , near the beginning of the chapter "Power Up" it's possible to create a makeshift ladder out of trip mines to climb the barrier blocking the railway, essentially skipping most of the chapter. This does, though, force you to play through the following chapter ("On a Rail") without the railway car.
      • It's also possible to, with extreme difficulty, grab the scientist at the beginning of "We've Got Hostiles" so that he opens the security control room and then the blast door, therefore bypassing the entire level and allowing the player to proceed on to "Blast Pit".
    • Half-Life 2:
      • Near the end of the chapter "Highway 17", you can skip the whole section on the bridge underside by stacking objects to climb over the force fields in your way. You'll have to leave the Scout Car behind, but it's not strictly required at any point from then on.
      • In the chapter "Water Hazard", you can bypass the Hunter-Chopper chase by Gate 5 by climbing on your airboat and then onto the walkway. However, it's hard to do and you miss the revolver. It's also possible to skip an entire floodgate complex by climbing a tower outside and blowing up the explosive barrel that smashes the gate open without even going inside.
    • Half-Life 2: Lost Coast:
      • A particularly bad sequence break if you use a physics bug to propel yourself half up the side of the cliff, then come right back down. The NPC at the bottom assumes that because you have been to the top of the cliff, you've gone and done all the plot points up there. So the game ends, 46 seconds in.
      • A bug with the gravity gun allows you to levitate by holding a flat piece of, well, anything under you. This allows you to skip large portions of the game simply by climbing over walls you're supposed to walk around.
    • In Episode Two, in the area where you get the car, you're supposed to work your way down through an area filled with headcrab zombies and back up the valley wall on the other side to get to the car. If you jump from the right spot with full health, though, it's actually possible to bypass most of the level simply by jumping down to one of the roofs below you, leaving you with just a small portion of radioactive gunk to pass over to get to the other side.
    • The Half-Life 2 "SMOD" gives Gordon a kick attack. When the Freelance Astronauts tried it out on the airboat levels, they discovered that it had bizarre and very exploitable effects on the physics. The result became known as the Kickboat Saga.
    • Due to the cooperative nature of the Sven Co-op mod, many games that are meant to be played alone can be broken due to tactics like jumping on top of each other to bypass a gate.
  • Infinity allows you to skip four levels of the game, including the hardest level, "Acme Station", by a well-placed grenade jump in the level "Electric Sheep One". This was almost certainly intentional on the part of the developers, because it takes you to "Electric Sheep Two", while the same location in "Electric Sheep Two" actually takes you to the level "Whatever You Please". For that matter, the same location in "Electric Sheep Three" takes you back to "Electric Sheep Two". There is a door in the first two "Electric Sheep" levels through which, theoretically, a player might be able to glitch oneself out of bounds using grenades. Should a player succeed in this glitching, they would reach "Electric Sheep Three". (The same location in "Electric Sheep Three", which is the main exit of that level, takes you to the level "Eat the Path".) Although the technique to accomplishment has been demonstrated in the Game Mod Marathon Eternal, it has not yet been pulled off in Infinity.
    • Speaking of which, there was a door in four levels of Eternal that would, before the forthcoming 1.2 release, take you to the final level of the game, "The Near Side of Everywhere". The earliest of these levels was "To Sleep, Perchance to Dream", meaning that players would only have to play nine levels, of which only six had any combat, in order to reach the end. These exits were hidden behind a door that doesn't open until the penultimate level, "Where Giants Have Fallen" (essentially the "success dream" levels in reverse and with enemies), but due to the brokenness of the assault rifle/grenade launcher, it was possible, albeit difficult, to glitch oneself through the door, as demonstrated in this speedruns. This sequence break no longer accomplishes anything in the forthcoming 1.2 release; the exit to "The Near Side of Everywhere" has been removed.
    • Less dramatic sequence breaks are possible throughout the original trilogy and in several game mods. Speed runs are naturally rife with them, but even standard runs frequently employ them. Some may even be intended by the developers.
  • STALKER: Shadow of Chernobyl can hand this to you. If you're not paying much attention after getting to the Bar (and you might not, it's a major hub), you can completely miss the prompt to head to the bandit-loaded Dark Valley and wind up going to Rostok instead (west, instead of southeast). This means you'll wind up fighting a large group of mercenaries that, while far more heavily armed and armored than you probably will be at the time, can't hit the broad side of a barn, and taking part in the game's only Escort Mission. Following that chain of missions to its conclusion will end with you loaded with cash from hocking artifacts, carrying mid-level NATO weaponry that punches far above its weight class, and possibly wearing an Ecologist suit that you got for free, which isn't great against bullets but can put off most environmental hazards, which are common in that area. Heading to the Dark Valley after this and butchering an abandoned warehouse full of bandits (who mainly wear leather jackets and carry low-end weaponry) can be incredibly satisfying considering how difficult the game has been up to that point. After slogging through countless gunfights, you finally get to have a one-sided battle in your favor.
    • A similar effect can be accomplished by going north to the army warehouses, where 3 freedom members, also carrying mid-level NATO weaponry, are gunned down the instant you enter the area. Also in this area the player can accompany the freedom faction against the monolith faction, potentially gaining even more powerful weapons. If the player continues north they can get to the early parts of the Red Forest and get late game weapons and armor that make a huge portion of the game exceptionally one-sided.
    • The Bar can be accessed before the player completes the objective to let them go through by killing the guards. The player can do this without angering the duty faction by using a noiseless pistol, which is found on a bandit that attacks you the instant enter the preceding area. This means that the player can get late game equipment before even starting the main story.
    • There are several times during the game where the military acts as a Beef Gate, and the player is supposed to avoid them by going another way. However, if the player has a powerful enough weapon (most likely acquired by one of the above methods), then they can most likely take down the entire military force. This can result in an Unwinnable by Mistake scenario, as the player can get past the point where they can attain a crucial item, or having an irreplaceable NPC simply fail to appear.
  • Pretty much the entire tutorial section of System Shock 2, a good 10-15 minutes of gameplay, can be skipped simply by knowing the passcode to the Engineering Bay ( 12451) beforehand.
    • By carefully placing a wrench on the floor in System Shock 2, you can keep an area from sealing. This does not only make a lot of dialogue make no sense, it also allows you to bypass a mission that resolves around finding a recharge station (since the one behind the doors is supposedly in hard vacuum). This confuses the game a bit.
  • In Turok 2, you get both the level 2 and level 3 keys in the first level. This means you can play levels 3 and 5 before 2 and 4, a more challenging path, and get the Firestorm Cannon and Missile Launcher earlier.
  • There are fast runs of Wolfenstein 3D on YouTube that feature breaks by persuading guards to open locked doors, then shooting them dead in the doorway so it can't close again. One level in Episode 4 actually relies on this; if you don't wedge the door, you have to go through a fiddly maze of half a dozen secret walls to find the key.
  • It's possible to skip an entire branch of the story in Marathon Infinity with some well-timed jumps in one of the "Electric Sheep" levels.
  • GoldenEye (1997): While not exactly easy to pull off, it's possible to beat Aztec level without killing Jaws and without even operating the open/close exhausting bay terminal. If the player attracts the yellow jump-suited guards in the corridor between the room with the terminal behind the glass doors and the exhaust bay, returns to the room and hides in the back, it's possible that the guards will open the glass doors and Bond can use the guidance data, recover the launch protocol, and finish the mission in any place within the level (even in the exhaust bay), as the level has no defined exit. It's not quite clear if this is a glitch or not, given that no level has a defined exit. This trick is very popular among speed run players.

    Hack And Slash 

    Interactive Fiction 
  • In Suspect by Infocom, if you go immediately to the garage, you can catch the murderer in the act of disposing of evidence and win the game immediately. The game is played in "real time", so it's a case of Developers' Foresight.

    MMO Role Playing Games 
  • In Guild Wars: Factions, the Gyala Hatchery mission has the players defend a band of turtles against mauraders. However, the players may avoid the turtles and trigger the majority of the battles without endangering the turtles. Upon escorting the turtles, the group will stop at the battle locations and warn of incoming attackers even though they have already been defeated. This method is often used to achieve the Master's reward of keeping all the hatchlings alive.
    • The original Prophecies campaign had many routes to skip chunks of the main quest, not least of which was the Lornar's Pass run. This allows the player to reach Droknar's Forge and craft maximum level armor while skipping half of the story missions.
    • In the Nolani Academy mission, after passing through the Great Wall the player is supposed to follow Rurik. The easier option is to immediately go the opposite direction from Rurik and head straight to the boss. This requires fighting only two or three groups of Charr, whereas following Rurik requires fighting most of their army and a number of other mob packs.
    • The final section of Ice Caves of Sorrow is an Escape Sequence where the player's party must stay ahead of a massive number of Mursaat while fighting through White Mantle and Stone Summit forces. Players prefer to trigger the Mursaat's patrol and then retreat down a side path, letting the Mursaat pass them and bulldoze the Stone Summit while dying to siege weapons. Players need only kill the mobs left over.
  • Backdooring in League of Legends and Defense of the Ancients: All-Stars. You are intended to siege first the outer towers and then the inner towers with your minion army, using your champions/heroes to kill the enemy players and buy time to push towers. Or you could just pick a hero with high damage and some sort of global teleport and get started on the enemy's base towers. In Dota, this is difficult but not impossible, due to "Backdoor Protection" regeneration when no minions are around. In League, you simply cannot attack towers if the towers before them are still standing. Neither game prevents the player from picking a character like Furion or Sivir and completely ignoring teamfights and just pushing random lanes until the enemy has no buildings left.
    • Is there a rule that says you have to fight in front of a tower and not behind it? No. Cue Axe in Dota and the proxy Singed strategy in League. Both characters can kill entire creep waves quickly even at level 1, enabling them to sit behind the enemy tower killing their minions so waves of friendly minions attack the tower until it breaks. Axe has the benefit of being almost impossible to dislodge by enemy melee laners when creeps are around due to his retaliatory spin attack; while proxy Singed benefits from the reduced bounty for players on a death streak, fully expecting to die a bazillion times but giving the enemy player a pittance of gold and then just running back and doing it again.
    • Roshan is a very powerful creep that gives a very high amount of gold to the entire team that kills him, a large amount of exp and the Aegis of the Imortal, which is basically a second life. It's very uncommon for this to happen before most heroes are level 10 at the least. That is unless you bring both Skeleton King and Ursa Warrior in, with the right items they can take down roshan at the start of the game. This gives them both 2 levels, their entire team 200 gold and a very powerful advantage of a 2nd life. Heck, you can have the entire team determined to level 1 Roshan.
  • In World of Warcraft, the storyline assumes you have completed every quest and instance up to that point. For example, the Wrath of the Lich King expansion's story is based off the assumption that you completed every prior instance once, and in the suggested order... and that your group was the only one to do so. For them to do otherwise would make little to no sense, as your character is famous for their exploits, but it can be a bit jarring. A player can do 0 quests and instances on the way to level 80, and suddenly be surprised to find out that Bolvar and Saurfang Jr. have been dead for eight full levels. Further complicating the matter is that the game assumes you have personal knowledge of quests that you could not possibly have completed; several quests and instances refer to events that occurred in Acherus: The Ebon Hold during the Death Knight starting questlines, which is amusing considering that non-Death Knights have no access to those quests, but the game speaks of these events in general terms in the level 70-80 quests as though you completed those quests and know exactly what these people are talking about.
    • A particular example, in Wrath of the Lich King there are two 'entry-level' zones in Northrend. After completing all the quests and instances in one or the other you will then be high enough level to take-on the Grizzly Hills zone, and after finishing all quests and instances in Grizzly Hills you will then be high enough level for the Zul'Drak zone. In Grizzly Hills Drakuru enlists your aid in a series of quests before betraying you and revealing himself to be in league with the Lich King all along. Later in Zul'Drak Drakuru attempts to recruit you as one of his vassals since you made such an excellent stooge, giving you the opportunity for some betrayal payback. However; this plotline goes entirely out the window if one completes all the quests in both entry-zones, thus making them high enough in level to skip Grizzly Hills entirely and go straight to Zul'Drak.
      • However someone seems to have noticed this since the game has come out. The dialogue from the quests is now different if you complete them in the correct order or the wrong order.
    • Players do this constantly in a minor way in every dungeon. In theory one fights through every enemy guarding the bosses before defeating them. In actuality players will take every possible opportunity to avoid fighting anyone other than the bosses, and skip even some of them. The Uthgarde Pinnacle dungeon is, well, a pinnacle of this. You can slip past first two groups of guards by hugging the wall. The first boss meets you with a lengthy show of her talking to a giant image of Arthas and ending with her transforming into a Val'kyr. However, the exit out of the room is not locked so you're free to leave her boasting to an empty room. The second boss is a a sequence of assorted monsters... That you have to unfreeze by pressing a switch. Again, nothing stops you from leaving them as is. Third boss is Skadi the Ruthless, who is intended to be fought in a gauntlet fashion, as players fight their way along a corridor while Skadi's drake breathes cold at them, his minions attack you, you collect javelins from them, and finally bring down his drake with the javelins to fight him. However, players quickly started just rushing through the gauntlet, killing the whole minion horde at once and bring down the drake without any need for dodging drake breath. So that's two bosses skipped, one shortened and only the final boss of the dungeon fought in full. Likewise in the Pit of Saron dungeon, two really tough groups of undead are summoned by two vrykul through a spell as part of a scripted sequence after the previous boss is killed. Players quickly realized that if they mounted up and rode through the area the vrykul would be summoned immediately after the boss died they could get through without being attacked.
      • A more serious example of this was pulled off ONCE in classic, and Blizzard came down on the responsible guild hard - banning every member of the guild whether they were in the raid group responsible or not. The Temple of Ahn'Quiraj (AQ40) is laid out such that the platform you fight the first boss on is directly above the chamber just before the final boss. The guild in question used a 3rd party program to glitch the platform's texture allowing them to drop into that room, bypassing virtually the entire raid. Retribution for hacking was swift.note 
    • Legion introduced a series of jumping puzzle world quests. After flying was made available in these zones it was discovered that if the quest was started while on a flying mount, the player could simply fly to the end and complete it in seconds rather than minutes. The only hindrance is the presence of invisible walls that trigger if a player "falls" outside the quest play area.
    • With the addition of the Dungeon Finder, it is now entirely possible to go into and clear out instances that were originally meant to be tackled at the end of their respective zone's storyline. For example, once you reach level 15 there's nothing stopping you from going into the Deadmines even if you haven't yet completed Westfall's questline and unmasked Vanessa Vancleef.
  • Similar to World of Warcraft above, Final Fantasy XIV has consistently been ripe for players trying to find the fastest way through dungeons. Square-Enix often tried to prevent these speed runs by putting in barriers, but geared players still found ways to rush them. Early dungeons could be cleared without killing fighting a single trash mob by exploiting the boss room "door" mechanics to train and then reset all trash before each boss.note 
    • One popular way of completing Trials/Savage Raids is to skip phases - many mechanics are triggered when the boss hits certain HP thresholds. However, if the team's DPS is high enough, the boss's HP drops so fast that mechanics aren't triggered before another threshold is reached. An example of this is Glasya Labolas in Syrcus Tower. Usually, the alliance is forced to jump to the outer platforms to avoid an attack, but killing him fast enough will skip this phase completely. One trial punishes players for killing the boss too fast - if Ifrit EX's HP drops too quickly, it will enrage, become invincible, and wipe the party.
  • Occurs in The Lord of the Rings Online. You can bypass a number of questlines, but the game will assume you did them if a NPC brings it up. For example, when meeting the Fellowship in Lothlórien they will react as if they knew you, even if you never did any quests related to them. However, the game seems to be steering away from it: in the latest update, a few returning characters will react differently if you never finished their earlier questline.
  • In Star Wars: The Old Republic, the designers put an open, PvP area in the middle of the Ilum Gree event. The intent was a full-blown free-for-all where people might make small (4-man maximum) teams, but it would be every player for themselves. But then the players realized there were no rewards for attacking other players aside from sending them back to base and forcing them to use a teleport to put them right back at the PvP area. Furthermore, many of the tasks needed to complete the PvE dailies could be done in the PvP area with about half the difficulty (a 2 or 3 player team doing the 4-man heroic would get crushed in the PvE area, but it was very fast and easy to do in the PvP area). Queue massive truces across the servers, Imperial and Republic players cooperating on daily tasks, orderly lines formed at an orb drop-off puzzle, and gankers from both factions being scolded by their own faction. Veteran MMO players reported they'd never seen anything like it.
  • Kingdom of Loathing:
    • The "nuns trick" is a minor example: the level 12 War quest tasks the player with starting (and then singlehandedly finishing) a war between the Frat Orcs and the Hippies. The war's progress can be sped up for one side or the other by completing sidequests in their name. Each side of the war has three sidequests available immediately, and can gain access to the other three by clearing out a certain number of enemy soldiers. The Nuns quest is supposed to be initially only available to the Hippies, but with monster-copying shenanigans, it can be completed in the name of the Frat Orcs without clearing out the requisite Hippy soldiers. Doing this right away saves a few turns, making it a vital part of a KoL Speed Run.
    • "BIG!" is "Sequence Breaking: The Challenge Path". In a normal ascension, the player must unlock the main quests gradually as they level up, finishing with the Naughty Sorceress quest at level 13. A BIG! ascension starts the player at level 15, unlocking all but two of them right away.note  Unsurprisingly, this path was the first to achieve the fabled single-day softcore ascension.

    Point And Click 
  • At one point in Scratches, the player must solve a puzzle in the crypt in an attempt to find another character's name, which is the key to a puzzle involving a combination lock. If you know the name ahead of time, however (because you've played before or just guessed correctly), you can simply open the combination lock without completing the puzzle. But the in-game time only advances when a puzzle is completed, and certain events can only be completed at certain times, so you still must complete the crypt puzzle, even though the only reason the character goes to the crypt is to find the name.
  • Myst can be completed mere minutes from starting a new game, because the codes required to reach the ending are always the same. Later games would learn from this mistake and introduce randomized codes or otherwise make you do all the stages before getting to the end.
    • The bad endings can also be reached through this method (in fact, it takes fewer steps) and, similarly to the Prince of Persia example, the game assumes you've obtained several pages you never collected. This strange scenario can also be set up through "legitimate" means, no matter which brother you give the pages to they'll always send you to the same place with the final red and blue pages.
    • The good ending part is somewhat justified, as it really is that simple (you just shouldn't know some of the required information yet).
  • It's entirely possible in Riven, the sequel to the above, to skip one of the islands and its puzzle because the code never changes - even though all the rest do. The puzzle in question involves topography and the location of inter-island Linking Book locations; if you know the general locations or have a photo of the locations for the marble puzzle later on, you can always skip the island. Could be considered "Sequence Breaking by Guide Dang It!".
  • In Total Distortion, most of the game revolves around recording and collecting footage to make music videos and sell them to TV producers on Earth, complete with an editor to do so. However, the game lets you back up your project files to your actual computer's hard drive. The developer's intention was to be able to share your videos between others who played the game, but it also creates an exploit that effectively eliminates the need to make new videos at all in subsequent replays.

    Puzzle Games 
  • In Metroidvania 1000 Amps, you are supposed to get upgrades in the following order: teleport, mapping, aura, defense, and finally the double jump. However, persistence (or strategic use of seeds) in the section you're supposed to navigate with the defense upgrade enables you to light enough rooms to make your way through to the double jump upgrade station without it. From there, the game breaks wide open (though you still have to get the defense upgrade to be able to connect to where the intruder's hiding).
  • Antichamber: While there isn't an exact singular sequence of puzzles that must be followed (the green and yellow block guns have multiple puzzles that lead directly to them), it is possible to reach the ending without getting the red block gun through clever manipulation and careful management of blocks.
  • One level of Super Scribblenauts has the starite stuck above two sliding platforms. To move these and get the starite, Maxwell needs to get to two switches, requiring the player to shift around a sequence of rocks to make sure certain doors don't open. Or you can just click on the switches directly, even though Maxwell's nowhere near them, and the starite drops with no effort at all.
  • The Witness: Due to being able to activate a puzzle panel from any distance and the fact that the puzzles in the main game are not randomized, it is possible to complete the swamp area in under a minute. It is also possible to directly complete the last puzzle in the autumn forest without doing anything else (if you know the solution beforehand!), and the keep with only three puzzles instead of five. Needless to say, these skips are used heavily in speedruns.
    • Once players are aware of the Set Piece Puzzles it's possible to complete the game within minutes of starting by completing the hidden puzzle on the electrified gate out of the starting area. This opens the passage to the secret true ending.

  • Banjo-Kazooie:
    • In the first game, it's designed in a way to railroad you into making sure that you complete at least the first two levels in order to make sure to get the bulk of the moves you'll be using throughout the game. After that, you can complete Bubblegloop Swamp before you go into the Clanker's Cavern level. It is also possible to access and complete the Freezeezy Peak puzzle without having the wade boots ability or Bubblegloop Swamp transformation, simply by getting Banjo through the tunnel to it as fast as possible without getting killed by the piranha infested waters—tricky, but feasible.
    • Also in the first game, it's possible to bypass the slopes of the Termite Mound in Mumbo's Mountain without turning into a termite by timing Banjo's jumps very carefully. You can use the same trick to reach the Switch Jiggy that appears on top of the lobby for the level.
    • Likewise, in Clanker's Cavern, you can exploit Kazooie's egg laying ability by ejecting her eggs into Clanker's teeth while he's still underwater, allowing you to enter him before you raise him.
    • In Freezeezy Peak, you can reach the Honeycomb piece in Wozza's Cave without the Walrus transformation by exploiting a glitch called the Quick Dive, while allows Banjo to dive far enough to go through the tunnel (normally, he can't dive underneath the freezing water, but the glitch bypasses this).
    • In Gobi's Valley, there's a glitch that allows you to Beak Barge your way through the side of the Sphinx, allowing you to access the inside of it without shooting eggs into it's nose. Also, the switch jiggy for that level can be reached without pressing the switch by using the Shock Jump pad nearby and leaping onto the coffin with the Jiggy on it, and then rolling into part of it—Banjo will clip through just enough to grab the jiggy inside.
    • In Rusty Bucket Bay, it's possible to use the Beak Barge to clip through the glass window in the Boiler Room, allowing you to get outside quicker when you shut off the ships propellers. In the same level, you can use the eggs to immediately knock back the Big Boom Box boss, skipping his intro cutscene while also giving you a couple second window to grab his Jiggy and hightail it out of there.
    • Subverted in Click Clock Wood; it's possible to use the eggs to break open the boulder blocking Gnawty's home, but he'll still act like the boulder is there, and his home won't load up if you swim into it.
    • During Grunty's Furnace Fun, there's a skull panel close to the end that, if you get it wrong while you're clipping on the corner of it, will accidentally knock you into another part of the board instead of the lava, allowing you to bypass the rest of the board and the games next cutscene and skip right to the top of Grunty's Lair.
    • There's a tricky clipping glitch involving the Talon Trot that allows you to skip past the door blocking you from accessing Dingpot at the top of Grunty's Lair, allowing you to fight Gruntilda without collecting 94 of the games jiggies.
    • The developers of Banjo-Tooie wanted you to 100% the first stage, Mayahem Temple, only after having obtained a couple of moves from the second, Glitter Gulch Mine. Not necessary. To get the jigsaw piece from the Pillars Vault, all you need is to jump off the edge of the nearby cliff while in Talon Trot, then use your double jump with great timing. You can 100% the entire game without once visiting the Pillars Vault at all.
    • In the NTSC version of Banjo-Tooie, if you break the window at the front of the factory, then fire a Clockwork Kazooie up into the window, a weird glitch can occur. If your clockwork Kazooie goes through the hole to enter the factory at the EXACT moment Banjo is hit by the worker enemy outside, you'll end up inside the building without having to use Chuffy to infiltrate it.
    • An example that crops up in Nuts & Bolts involves putting anything in the trolley (such as a bench or a crate), standing on it and then levitating the trolley. The trolley, with you on top of your bench, will start flying and be able to access much of Showdown Town without finishing the various Grunty challenges (specifically, it bypasses the need for high-grip, floating and springs). This gives access to significantly better vehicle parts right from the start.
    • At the start of Nuts & Bolts, it is possible to climb to the top of L.O.G's factory to the Jiggy Tamper Switch almost immediately after entering Showdown Town for the first time. Attempting to use the switch (and thus earn a Jiggy before L.O.G gives you your first one) earns a Shout Out from L.O.G - "Trying to break the game already?" before he locks the switch down and tells you to come back at a "more reasonable time".
  • In The Cave if you take a second hot dog from the vending machine at the start, get it all the way to the zoo and avoid getting the character holding it eaten by the monster, you can skip most of that level.
  • In Cave Story, the fireplace in Chaco's house can be skipped (saving one more trip to collect Jellyfish Juice) by abusing knockback from the enemies outside.
  • A few of the Achievements in Freedom Planet involves the player to use their characters' abilities and bypass certain obstacles that would normally take up time to get through.
  • In The Incredible Machine (aka TIM) series of games you can break many puzzles of the game using only few accurately placed items from the tool pool instead of creating the complex machine the creators - more or less - intended.
  • In La-Mulana (original version):
    • You can jump right at the point where the Endless Corridor loops around and go straight from the first level to the fifth level. You don't even need the Endless Key for this.
    • The Mini Doll Fetch Quest can be bypassed by jumping into the Sacrificial Pit and killing Shu with spears.
    • To obtain the Ocarina, you don't need a pregnant Woman Statue if you just damage-boost through the walls in the sanctum in the Temple of Moonlight.
  • A speedrun video of Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus extensively uses a bug that allows Abe to climb through floors that he shouldn't be able to; in several instances, this allows a puzzle to be completed quicker than it should, but at about the halfway point, it is possible to use this bug in combination with a secret area to skip two large portions of the game.
  • New Super Marisa Land has two secret exits that allow the player to skip entire worlds. 1-4 will take you to World 3, while 3-5 will take you to World 7. You can even beat the World 7 boss, which takes you to the final area, without having collected a single mushroom!
  • In Jazz Jackrabbit 2, savvy use of Spaz' double jump can allow you to reach the game's secret areas without needing to hunt down the hidden teleporters intended to bring you there, as well as in some places create shortcuts that the player wasn't intended to take.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • In Sonic 3 & Knuckles, the midboss of Ice Cap can be skipped if you're using Tails and fly above the midboss area. This causes a few glitches in Act 2, though. The Mecha Sonic "Nostalgia Boss" fights in Sky Sanctuary can also be skipped this way.
      • You can also glitch-dash through certain walls as Hyper Sonic, allowing you to reach areas normally reserved for Knuckles. Be warned, you may get stuck, and encounter artifacts of the Glitch Gremlin.
      • You can also glitch-dash through the Flying Battery Act 2 boss so you end up on the other side of the barrier looking at Robotnik/Eggman. You can go almost to the top of the level but the clouds and boxes are glitched.
    • While the actual game sequence generally isn't broken that often, 3D Sonic games tend to have some acts that can be rather easily broken with glitches or a boost. This is particularly notable in Sonic Unleashed (the HD version), which has a lot of individual speedrunning shortcuts (on each stage) that involve usage of the Sonic Boost at the right place/time to go past large portions of a stage.
      • The Night stages have a glitch that lets you attack your way through walls, and attacking a certain way allows you to extend your jump height slightly. Doing such tricks allows you to access shortcuts and even entire beta areas, although some require usage of barrels to gain extra height. One actually leads to an unfinished puzzle and an alternate goal ring!
    • Sonic Colors, a spiritual successor to Unleashed's daytime gameplay with the addition of powerups, has it even worse in some acts; in addition to the boost (which is still rather useful for speedruns, just less so,) the Cyan Laser Wisp is amazingly good at invoking this trope in the right hands; one guy got a time of less than 15 seconds on one of the Sweet Mountain acts using the Laser and some tricky jumping. For a notable non-laser example, it's possible to get normal Sonic through Asteroid Coaster Act 3 in less than five seconds by abusing enemy bounce physics you get from jumping on an enemy without releasing the A button. You can get into a Wall Jump position and combine it with the airdash to get onto a ledge you would normally need the Pink Spikes wisp to reach.
    • Sonic Adventure has plenty of glitches of its own, enough for sequence breaks to be prevalent. Casinopolis can be beaten within 15 seconds if you jump the right way and glitch through a wall.
      • Final Egg with Sonic can be finished in under a minute. The first section of the game has no real glitches, however the second section can be bypassed by getting inside the rotating fan which will not deactivate the death box allowing you to finish it stupid early. The third and final section is the worst. You can spin dash through a nearby wall behind the spider elevator, sending you into complete darkness, however if you steer correctly, you'll send Sonic falling down onto the end platform and finishing the stage.
      • Red Mountain has a large portion that can be skipped by less than 30 seconds in, Sonic can Spin Dash towards a rock on what appears to be a false wall which turns out to be real, then Spin Dash around this wall after landing on said rock and you'll put yourself near the entrance of the mountain. This can be broken further by activating the event lava rise box by glitching Sonic high enough to get the lava to rise to its highest height, bypassing the entire stage.
      • If you glitch correctly in Ice Cap with Sonic, the first section can be finished nearly in 5 seconds, the second section can be glitched right away through the large wooden door you have to find a way to open by running around, and you can glitch through a wall near the snowboarding section, allowing Sonic to run down the mountain instead, but he'll never activate the timer again, meaning that whatever time it said at the end of the second section of this stage is the time that'll finish when you reach the end of the stage regardless of how long it took.
      • Twinkle Park can be glitched as well with Sonic to allow for heavy sequence breaking. If you maneuver Sonic right, you'll skip the roller coaster. Go a step further and you can put yourself with a good Spin Dash jump right near the end of the stage.
      • In fact, something as simple as jumping over a gate allows you to skip a majority of the platforming section of Twinkle Park.
      • A correct Spin Dash jump on Speed Highway can skip the last 30% of the first section. Another Spin Dash jump on the final section can throw you over the buildings to the exit, meaning Sonic doesn't have to run around them and waste any time.
      • If one does a good Spin Dash jump, they can skip the majority of the tornado simply by jumping in the right direction and landing on a spring, skipping the bridge and the trampoline.
      • Another good Spin Dash jump can bypass the entire final section of Sky Deck where the ship turns sideways. The player can put themselves right at the spring. If you can hit it before the ship flips entirely, you can actually finish the stage without having to monkey-bar around, then flip the ship back to a normal gravity.
      • Spindashing, at least in SA:DX, is so useful that it's entirely possible to skip most of Sonic's item upgrades, up to the entrance to Red Mountain where the Ancient Light upgrade is required.
      • Lost World can also be glitched with Sonic. A correct Spin Dash jump can throw Sonic through the door at the snake pool, bypassing the switch pressing section. The player has to perform this while standing on the stone snake head outside the snake pool.
  • There's a small bit of sequence breaking in the first level of Spyro the Dragon 2. One of the three orbs is only accessible from the top of a high ledge that can be climbed. The player is supposed to reach the second world and buy the climb ability from Moneybags, but some careful gliding and skilled use of the superfly powerup placed in the last area of the level give you just enough distance to reach the ledge early.
    • There are several instances where you can use the extra height you get from charging and jumping at the same time to sequence break. In Colossus, for instance, it is possible to skip the last two gates and still get 100% on the level by using this trick to get on top of a pillar.
    • In Spyro: Year of the Dragon, it's possible to exploit collision detection bugs to get into 'portals' which you shouldn't have access to yet, or to access them from a direction you're not supposed to, exit and skip most of a level as a result.
    • Also, when you find yourself having to chase a thief to get eggs, it is often possible to jump onto the thief from a ledge instead of running after him.
    • In Spyro: Enter the Dragonfly, you can phase through the second gate in the Dragon Realms (the one that requires you to have the ice breath to unlock it) if you charge into it at a certain angle, allowing you to reach the last three levels early, though considering the game is so buggy the fact this is possible isn't a surprise.
  • Some of the early Tomb Raider games have enemies already spawned in the level, but they aren't "alive" until you pass a certain trigger that turns them on. If you approach certain parts of the level wrong via glitches, you can see enemies that are frozen and won't attack, but you can't hit them.
  • In Yoshi's Island, it was possible to shoot an egg at the lone Piranha Plant at the end of Level 3-8, before triggering the cutscene where Kamek turns the Piranha Plant into Naval Piranha, the stage boss. Doing so would kill the Piranha Plant in one hit, resulting in an alternate cutscene where Kamek flies in, screams "OH MY!!" in surprise and flies off, and you win the boss battle automatically.
  • In the freeware puzzle game TAG: The Power of Paint, you can skip almost all of the second-last level. Shortly after you begin the level and get the blue spray can, you have to drop down onto a green platform which propels you back up to the next building. At the very end of the level you have to use this platform again to stick yourself onto a building and get to the level exit. The creators apparently didn't test properly, as you can erase a lane on this platform, run and jump, and (just barely) make it onto the building without red paint.
  • In the Genesis / Mega Drive version of Flashback, a collision detection glitch allows the player to run through walls, creating several massive shortcuts and drastically cutting down the time needed to finish the game. If you complete a level without any of the items you need, the next stage will assume you have them anyway... to the extent that you can even finish the game and see Conrad escape as the Morphs' planet explodes... even if you didn't set the Time Bomb anywhere, much less acquire it! See this tool-assisted speedrun for a demonstration. The same glitch is possible in the DOS floppy version, but has been fixed in a later CD re-release.
  • In the original Lemmings, sequence breaks on a level-by-level basis are known as "backroutes". A well-known one is the level Save Me, second-to-last in the original game — it is possible to complete this level on the PC version by building west rather than east, by exploiting a bug that allows lemmings to dig through the edge of a steel platform. This is a bit simpler than the complex blocker/builder structures that are normally necessary on the level, but it's still hard to pull off.
  • Mega Man X1: It turns out there are a few quirks in the physics engine that allows for speedrunning shenanigans, to wit:
    • The heart tank in Sting Cameleon's stage can be reached even before it's flooded by using Shotgun Ice's sled, or extremely precise dash-jumping.
    • Ditto the heart tank in Boomer Kuwanger's stage.
    • The cutscene confrontation between Zero and Vile in Sigma's fortress can be skipped, as well as part of the sequence afterwards.
    • The Shotgun Ice sled can also be used to skip the re-fight with Armored Armadillo by taking advantage of screen scroll.
  • Not quite the same, but... When fighting Flame Hyenard in Mega Man X7, it's possible to bypass most of the boss' scripted attacks and freeze him in place to be shot at like a sitting duck. Normally you're supposed to fight him on the back of a giant mechanical horse, where you're harassed by his two clones and a constant bombardment of missles; if you're quick enough, though, you can actually jump on the horse's neck, freezing Hyenard in place on the horse's head and preventing him from using anything other than the missiles and a weak fire attack on you, and you can stop the missile attacks by destroying both of the horse's ears.
  • The first level of the Prince of Persia begins with the Prince only a few screens away from the Level Goal door. However, a guard blocks the passageway leading to this exit, and the Prince is supposed to go all the way to the left side of the level so he can get a sword to fight guards off with. However, this lengthy exercise is not necessary. It is possible to lure the guard to the left, and have the Prince go around and drop to the right of the guard, with a clear path to the exit. (Speed Runners, however, have found an even quicker way: with a well-timed jump, the Prince can end up on the other side of the guard without getting killed as ought to happen.) The strangest thing about doing all this is that the Prince will have his sword in the following levels, despite never having obtained it in the first.
    • Also in the original Prince of Persia, one could skip significant portions of level 7 and level 12 by jumping at certain places that caused convenient physics glitches.
    • The TurboGrafx-16 version of Prince of Persia is even more breakable by glitches. Using the "Game End" menu option while standing in front of a closed exit door allows you to go through the door immediately afterwards. You can also survive usually lethal falls by clinging to a ledge, which combined with the aforementioned door glitch renders levels 7 and 8 trivial.
    • Some copies of Prince of Persia 2 had a glitch causing the entrance door to Level 6 to stay open, allowing the player to use it to exit the level a mere second after entering it. Like the previous game, the Prince needs to obtain a short sword in this level (after losing his sword in the previous one), but using this glitch will cause the sword to appear anyway.
  • The XBLA game Shadow Complex has sequence breaks in it, just like the Metroid series (that it's admittedly very similar to). The developers actually ENCOURAGED this, making an in-game challenge called "The Insurgent" which actually requires you to skip several events and beat the game with only 4% of the items.
  • Spongebob Squarepants Battle For Bikini Bottom has many glitches that allow you to pull off tricks like this:
    • Doing a Cruise Bubble and a Bubble Bowl at the same time against some surfaces (Like Teleport Boxes) makes SpongeBob slide indefinitely, allowing you to jump farther or get higher by using the Bubble Bash, a jump-type move which usually prevents movement.
    • Hailing a Taxi in the hub after going out of bounds and being pulled away by Hans disables bottomless pits, letting the player explore unreachable areas and cheat on slides.
    • Double jumping after getting knocked back by an explosion or falling in water/goo sends you flying far away, which is more of an exploit of the game's physics.
    • Also regarding the above case, the final boss fight involves it flipping platforms. However, you have to time your jump right without getting damaged if possible (which doesn't matter), but it you do time it right, a high launch is to be expected. Doing it at the right time at the boss's very first attack will cause SpongeBob to fly high and upward as usual, only to immediately enter the cutscene involving the boss's first defeat.
  • In Super Mario World, it's entirely possible to defeat Bowser after defeating only one Koopaling, without triggering any Switch Palaces, or even rescuing the first Yoshi, thanks to the Star Road. By using only secret exits in Donut Plains, you can travel to the Star Road, unlock the Blue Yoshi, and use it to fly to the key in Star World 4. The resulting warp takes you directly to Bowser's castle, meaning skilled players can complete the game in less than a half hour.
  • In Super Mario Sunshine, it is possible to skip the first Bianca Hills level by climbing up the big windmill and beating the boss of the second level before beating the first, either by using the tightropes scattered across the first level and some fancy jumping or by beating the boss of the first level and going straight up the path instead of getting the Shine Sprite. It's even lampshaded by an NPC when you do so.
    • It is also possible to enter Pianta Village as early as the beginning of the game. Normally you need the Rocket Nozzle to reach it but its entirely possible to use triple jumps and walk kicks to reach the warp pipe leading to the world.
  • Levels in Super Mario Galaxy and its sequel typically consist of a linear sequence of small planets which must be cleared in order, but the combination of the game's semi-realistic modeling of gravity and the protagonist's super jumping abilities sometimes makes it possible to skip entire sequences by taking a leap of faith through the void from one planet to another. This is Turned Up to Eleven when you unlock Luigi, who can jump longer and higher than Mario (for whom the game was most meticulously playtested) or if you exploit Yoshi's Infinite Flutter glitch.
  • In Super Mario Maker taking a path the level maker didn't anticipate is known as "cheesing" the level. Also, since Nintendo requires the maker be able to beat the level themselves before they can upload it, many of the harder levels have hidden "dev" exits that bypass the whole level, or invincibility stars or the like to get by tricky sections.
  • Donkey Kong:
    • Donkey Kong '94 (and, by extension, Mario vs. Donkey Kong) had one in Forest Level 3. Instead of climbing up to activate a lever to gain access to the exit door, simply run to the left and use the summonable ladder to block the lock from closing, grab the key next to you and run off. Not a great effect but still useful.
    • Donkey Kong Country: There's a glitch on the first map screen that allows you to bypass huge chunks of the game; on the world map of Kongo Jungle, rapidly pressing A Button while Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong are moving on the dotted path between levels may cause the player to be teleported to the middle of the level Orang-utan Gang, all the way in Vine Valley. In the same level, there's another glitch that allows you to skip ahead to Manic Mincers in the final world, Chimp Caverns. Note however that this only works in the original version of the game; the glitch was fixed in a subsequent revision of the SNES game and its ports.
  • Portal let you bypass a puzzle by shooting a portal at the foot of a deactivated lift, shooting another at the top of a long drop, and jumping down the drop, bouncing over the elevator.
    • In Test Chamber 10 it's entirely possible to bypass half the level by a well-timed jump into your blue portal, giving yourself enough momentum to launch yourself across the acid death pit and onto the platform where the orange Portal Gun is located.
    • Likewise, don't want to do Test Chamber 14? Place a portal right next to the exit, go to the left and go up the stairs. Once the stairs retract, you now have a nice drop to place the second portal, jump down it and get launched high enough to reach the exit without having to go through the hassle of lowering the elevator.
    • In levels consisting of mostly moving storage cubes, with good timing you could just fling them to the megawatt buttons on the other side of the level.
    • The in-game commentary actually states that, when beta testers found ways to sequence break around puzzles, they would often leave them in, especially if the break required more thought and ingenuity than the actual puzzle.
    • The time trials/challenges actually require sequence breaking to achieve "Gold". The aforementioned bypass requiring 2 portals is the Gold target for that particular test chamber. As mentioned above, this is a case of the creators specifically rewarding sequence breakers.
  • In Mirror's Edge, the heavily-exploited kick glitch, which involves kicking from a wallrun and jumping off the invisible platform that briefly appears at the end of the kick animation, allows Faith to shortcut across large gaps and survive otherwise lethal drops for major shortcuts when speedrunning. Even better are "out of bounds" glitches, which can be used to skip up to four minutes of a chapter, e.g. the entire boat section in Chapter 7.
  • In Hollow Knight, some items that aren't meant to be obtained until you learn an ability much later can be reached early by nail-bouncing off spikes or enemies, such as the Fury of the Fallen charm in the starting area, two of the Mask Shards in Forgotten Crossroads, and the Pale Ore at the top of Crystal Peak.

    Racing Games 
  • Many 2D racing games don't properly check that the player has actually gone all the way around the track, they just check if they cross the finish line from the right direction. This leads to you being able to start the race, drive backwards (or make a quick U-turn) over the finish line, and then cross it again forwards. Especially common in homemade games made with the Klik 'n' Play engine (which came with a racer template which exhibited this flaw) but even Nintendo has fallen for this mistake.
    • Super Mario Kart used a "backwards" counter to prevent this scenario. Any time you cross the finish line backwards, it increases the counter, and any time you cross the finish line properly, it decreases the counter. The only way to get a proper lap is to cross the finish line properly while the counter is zero. On some maps, the finish line stops at the wall, which means a very lucky jump at the wall can bypass this mechanism altogether.
  • Mario Kart 64 also had the infamous Rainbow Road shortcut. There's a steep hill at the very start, which allows you to jump over the rails... and if you make a leap of faith in the right spot, it's possible to land on a portion of track far below, cutting half the course. Given that Rainbow Road is the longest track in the game by far, this is quite an advantage, and pulling it off on all three laps is pretty much a requirement if you want to finish a time trial under the five minute limit for a ghost.
    • Wario Raceway in the same game also has a short hill at the beginning that, if used in the correct manner, allows you to skip about half the course from the very beginning. For added fun, this brings you to another area of the track which, with enough skill, can be skipped back to the very end of the course. This leads to a track that generally takes about four minutes to complete having world records of about fifteen seconds.
  • Eventually patched, but Mario Kart 7 had a certain glitch that effectively cut one third of one race track. Maka Wuhu was one of the courses that were really long and cut into three sections instead of laps. However, if you jump off the course at the right area near the beginning of the second section, you'll respawn right near the end, skipping it entirely. Eventually everyone who played the course online did this, necessitating the patch.

    Role Playing Games 
  • Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura:
    • It is possible to skip the plot to find the location of dark elf village by simply going to where the book with the location is and digging it up from the grave in Rosebougrh.
    • More than 90% of the main questline can be skipped entirely by going to Stringy Pete at your earliest convenience, killing him and using his ship to get to the Isle of Thanatos(his ship always has this destination available) to meet with Nasrudin. If Nasrudin is killed the player will automatically be banished to the Void where he can proceed to fight Kerghan. Killing Kerghan without the Vendigroth device requires Kryggird's Falchion, a unique sword that is, conveniently enough, also found in the void.
  • Diablo II multiplayer was notorious for its abuse of "rushing", wherein a high-level character with all waypoints unlocked would open town portals near act-end waypoints, allowing lower-level characters to skip straight to those waypoints and unlock them regardless of what prerequisite quests they had or hadn't accomplished. This was most commonly used to circumvent the Summoner fight in Act II, the High Council fight (and the quest for all of the Khalim's Flail parts) in Act III, and the Ancients in Act V. It was one of many exploits that were fixed in the controversial 1.10 patch.
  • The Avernum series uses Fight Woosh in reverse, putting your party back into formation when combat ends. In the first three games, starting and immediately ending combat can move you forwards a few tiles, potentially bypassing tiles that trigger an effect when stepped on. Given that sometimes the effect is a dialogue message explaining why you can't actually enter the space, this was widely considered a Good Bad Bug. (You can also break sequences sometimes with the Move Mountains spell, but this is intentional.)
  • Baldur's Gate II has an early quest against a powerful blind beholder called the Unseeing Eye. Since your party is not leveled up enough until much much later, a direct confrontation with him is suicidal. To defeat him, you are supposed to enter new dungeons facing many new monsters and finaly assembly a magical rod that will heavily weaken the beholder. But in one of the first shops you meet you can buy a reflecting shield designed against beholders. It simply breaks every confrontation with beholders: you can ignore everything and simply go through the lair and destroy all like a hot knife in the butter, to the point that many players count this item as cheesey. It may be questionable if this counts as a true sequence breaker, since developers intentionally added the shield in the game, whatever unbalanced it might be. However, the merchant that sells this shield did not appear in the original release of Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn, but was latter added to the game in some of the exclusive Collector's Edition of the game. She was later made available as a free-downloadable content and developers might have overlooked its impact to the early game. Even if expensive, it's easy to get the required amount of gold.
    • Averted in the popular mod Sword Coast Stratagems (SCS) where the shield is moved to later and made more expensive, forcing you to deal with the Unseeing Eye in the intended way, and beholders can anyway telekinetically steal it from you.
    • Talking of mods, there is another popular one that allows you to completely skip the first two dungeons (Chateau Irenicus) and directly proceed to chapter 2, thus avoiding the whole development of the plotline in the meanwhile which many players find too boring and railroaded after several playthroughs of the same dungeons.
    • Using the "import character and pause at the start" exploit to avoid your items being erased by a script during the initial sequence, you can start with valuable items that you can sell right before the beginning of chapter 2. Well, you won't even enter chapter 2 because by selling those items you will get enough money to skip the whole part of raising enough funds to pay Gaelan and you will directly go to chapter 3... Averted in the Enhanced Edition, since the import/pause exploit was fixed.
    • By pickpocketing the right targets or killing them when it is not supposed to do, you can get the required items for a door or a new chapter, skipping the whole quests that allowed you to obtain those items. This can lead to silly dialogues where are mentioned deeds that are never actually done or characters that weren't even encountered as the intended playthrough would have got. This is blatant in the Underdark where it is possible to skip a ton of quests and directly escape. However, sometimes targets killed (or turned hostile by pickpocketing) are required for the plot or later quests. Sometimes you just get instakilled by the game to prevent abuse, sometimes you discover a Game-Breaker or a Unwinnable by Insanity situation: player is advised.
  • Chrono Trigger and games like it, not only encourage some degree of sequence breaking, but reward it. Largely this comes from allowing the player to attempt to beat the game at any time (and with a new game plus, it can be beaten just a few minutes in with only one or two party members).
    • As a lesser example, you can skip half of the derelict factory if you already know the "zabie" code.
    • It also inverts it, by using the theme of time to give you some incentive for not accidentally breaking the sequence. Namely, if you realize Developers' Foresight and actually made it so that if you took an item from a later period, and then returned to an earlier period, you are rewarded with an additional item. This is very important since it applies to the aeon-transcending Black Omen, which the boss at the end can be fought a total of 3 times and yields powerful equips, should you do it in sequence.
    • More true to the spirit of the trope, at some point in 12,000 B.C., a woman asks the party if she should follow the queen's order to burn a sapling. After a certain event, the party is asked again what to do with it. This is supposed to kick off one of the quests in the Fated Hour portion of the game. However, the game only checks the first time you're asked. When you've answered appropriately, you can take on that quest right away.
  • Downplayed in Dark Souls III, if you killed Emma at High Wall of Lothric, you can fight against the Dancer of the Boreal Valley very early and if you managed to defeat her, you gain access to three late-game areas as well as Disc One Nukes, however, it doesn't unlock The Very Definitely Final Dungeon immediately and you still have to kill the Lords of Cinders in order to unlock it.
  • In the first Dragon Quest, you are supposed to rescue the princess so she can give you an item that will help you find a magic item. However, unlike later games where an item wouldn't even be placed on the map until triggered by an event, the magic item is available from the start of the game. Therefore, if you already know where it is, you can skip the rescue and just grab it.
    • In Dragon Quest V, there is a town named Hay that is being assaulted by a monster in a cave. The game expects you to skip over Hay and move right to learn Zoom and get married. When you come back to the port with your wife, a character from Hay will run in and ask that you kill the monster, he'll even give you 1500 gold coins as an advance. However, if you go to the cave immediately when you land on the continent, you can have already taken care of the monster, its your tiger from when you were a kid. So the townspeople of Hay are freaking out over a monster threat you could have taken care of hours ago. They'll still give you the reward money though. Just talk to them again and they'll act you just finished the quest.
    • At one point in Dragon Quest VIII, you have to retrieve the Venus' Tear from a dungeon for Yangus' old 'friend' Red. However, it's possible to go through the dungeon and grab the gem before you ever even meet Red. Doing this leads to a special scene after she makes the request and the group leaves her house: Trode asks Yangus why they didn't just hand her the Tear immediately, and Yangus replies that they've "got to make it look good", or else Red will just send them after something else.
  • Earthbound has a set order for My Sanctuary spots, but you can skip some. Naturally, this leads to the dev team forseeing this and coding the final My Sanctuary cutscene, but only in the spots you could possibly do last.
    • One can also glitch through certain cliffs, especially in Peaceful Rest valley, saving you some time.
    • One bizarre example is the Summers Museum. The exhibit you're required to visit to proceed through the game has two enemies to fight. The enemies only move when you do, and you will collide with both of them if you talk to the NPC and then try to leave, unless you are VERY careful with your steps, in which case you can exit the room having only fought one. It might save you some time. The enemy also stays there for the rest of the game, so if you beat the game and decide to enter that room in the Playable Epilogue you get to have the only Post-Game fight. Get a game over, and the game glitches out.
  • The Elder Scrolls:
    • In Morrowind, given the wide-open nature of the game, it is possible to acquire items meant to be acquired very late in the main quest whenever you want. For example, one can acquire the late-game artifacts Keening and Sunder before even finishing the first few missions of the game. (Actually using them that early is another story without exploits, though many speed runners have found ways to do it.) Also, the Cavern of the Incarnate, a plot-essential (not counting the backdoor plot) location that normally shows up around 3/4 of the way through the main quest (after you solve the riddle of its location), is entirely accessible from the very outset of the game if the player knows where to find it.
      • Later in the game, you are prompted to be accepted as Nerevarine/Hortator by the four Ashlander tribes and the three great houses. After doing this you'll receive a letter from Archmagister Gothren allowing you to speak to Vivec and start the end-game questline. However, if you have a high enough level and fame stat (much higher than if you just went through the main quest ignoring all sidequests), you'll receive the invitation regardless of how many of the tribes/houses you've allied with.
    • And in Oblivion, if you get into Cloud Ruler Temple early, you can retrieve the Amulet of Kings before it is even stolen, cutting out a significant chunk of the main quest and making the rest make no sense whatsoever. Even worse, due to the floating paint brushes glitch which made brushes hover in mid air but still solid to stand on it's possible to get the very end of the main quest just minutes after you left the sewers.
    • It crops up a lot in Skyrim as well: if you like to explore, you may well find the very item someone's asked you to find later when they bring up a quest for them, or you can begin dungeons relevant to the main quest long before you reach that point in the story. One good example comes from the Dragonborn DLC, which involves finding and reading Black Books which transport you to a Daedric realm; it's extremely easy to find these books before you're supposed to and therefore explore the realm before you have an in-story reason to do so, which can be jarring if you read one of them and then find the intended first and second books which introduce you to the Big Bad of the DLC and ease you into exploring the realm and fighting the enemies there.
  • The Fallout series' freeform nature effectively allow for this en masse:
    • In Fallout, you can skip a good part of the main quest using no glitches at all. Getting the water chip and returning it to the Overseer is not required to finish the game because you can access both the Military Base and the Cathedral early on. Destroying both of these structures will trigger the final cutscene with the Overseer, which will just act like normal. It can be finished in ~10 minutes.
    • It's possible (with luck) to complete Fallout 2 in about a quarter of an hour by using reverse pickpockets to plant timed explosives on certain NPC, circumventing the vast majority of the game.
    • Fallout 3 is notable for the sheer number of ways to break sequence, particularly in the main quest (most of the first half of the game can be skipped outright simply by talking to Dr. Li in Rivet City, which is accessible as soon as you leave the Vault). There's so many that players are likely to just stumble into at least some.
      • Even better, rather than traveling to Rivet City, talking to Doctor Li and fighting your way through the rather sturdy Super Mutants at the Jefferson Memorial to find some recordings left behind by James you can simply walk right towards the Vault he's captive in and go through the simulation. The best part about it is that the simulation itself hardly involves anything dangerous or any combat unless you choose a specific path (which gives you a purposely overpowered weapon for the occasion) meaning that even players fresh out of the Vault can do it with no trouble.
      • You can go straight to Smith Casey's Garage/Vault 112 and skip three entire story quests right after leaving Vault 101. Just beware of the Yao Guai and other deadly enemies. This may be accidentally discovered during the Grady's Package miniquest (found during the early sidequest "Those!"), which points you to the location of Girdershade, just west of the Garage. If you do the Galaxy News Radio sidequest independently of the main quest line, either by passing Three Dog's speech test in "Following in his Footsteps", or bypassing that quest, you earn a key to a weapons stash in Hamilton's Hideaway. However, in the latter case, you will have to fight the Super Mutants at GNR Plaza solo, and won't get the Fatman and mini-nukes, so the Behemoth will take much longer to beat.
      • In many locations, if your skills are high enough, you can pick or hack a door that is otherwise only openable from the other side.
      • One sequence break that will break the game and render the main quest line Unwinnable by Mistake is accessing Little Lamplight and Vault 87 too soon, which locks you out of the Jefferson Memorial and Citadel, the two most story-critical locations.
    • Fallout: New Vegas features Beef Gates between your starting point and Vegas; you're expected to take the long way around. But if you're clever and sneaky enough, you can make a beeline for Vegas.
      • If you're brave enough to mountaineer past the Quarry Junction Deathclaws at level one, you can get all the way to the New Vegas Strip in less than ten minutes.
      • The other way to do it is to sneak across the roads leading up to Black Mountain from Hidden Valley, making a beeline towards the NCR Ranger Safehouse. Difficult, but certainly doable - especially if you have a Stealthboy.
    • The second half of New Vegas can be completed in very short order by killing House and plugging Yes-Man into the mainframe. The independent quest line can be largely skipped (you can even skip upgrading the securitrons if you'd like, although this makes it much harder), although this results in a woefully underpowered character with no allies at Hoover Dam. If you build an INT 10 character and put all your skill points into speech until it reaches 80, take the comprehension perk at level 4, and have a speech magazine handy, a level 5 or 6 character can use the speech option to convince Lanius and Oliver to give up the fight. It's no Golden Ending, but it gets the job done.
    • Fallout 4, however, averts this; the developers got their ducks in a row as far as locking content and locations down until the correct previous quest triggers them.
  • In Final Fantasy I, it is possible to reach the Castle of Ordeals far sooner than the developers intended. At any point after defeating the Lich and winning the canoe, instead of taking the canoe up to the volcano as the Omniscient Council of Vagueness suggests, you can simply take your ship, sail down to the southern continent, and canoe inland onto the river just north of the Castle of Ordeals. As there is nothing keeping the party from going to every dungeon but the last and get every treasure but the Masamune before defeating the second fiend. The programmers may have had that in mind, as fighting the fiends out of order changes their pre-fight dialogue (at least in the more recent versions).
  • In Final Fantasy II, the town of Mysidia can be accessed earlier than you're expected to go there in the story, allowing you to purchase equipment and spells above what would otherwise be available. The land route is populated with Beef Gates stronger than the encounters around Mysidia that will absolutely destroy you if you're not prepared...or, once you have the ship, you can dock in a nearby bay and make only a short walk to Mysidia. If you can reach the Cave of Mysidia, you can also claim the Black Garb, one of the best armours in the game.
    • It's also possible to enter the Tropical Island dungeon to claim the Black Mask as soon as you get the ship, long before you even know about the Masks. Unlike Mysidia, the enemies within are only slightly above Deist's encounters.
  • The "Crystal Room Warp Trick" in the SNES and PS1 releases of Final Fantasy IV. Casting Warp in King Giott's throne room, immediately after the Calbrena/Golbez boss fight, will send you back into the Crystal Room, with an Underground Crystal still there for you to pick up. This Crystal will register as a valid event flag when you step on a tile just outside the Sealed Cave and Kain steals the Crystal, letting you skip the Sealed Cave entirely.
  • Final Fantasy VI:
    • In the very unlikely event that the player saves on the world map at the beginning of the game after leaving Narshe, then plays through the entire game without saving until they reach the Floating Continent, jump onto the ship from the continent, fly around for half a minute, get back on the continent and then die, the player can continue with all their levels and the airship. This happens because, since you access the Floating Continent from the ship without leaving it, the game assumes the player is still on it when you continue - although the airship will disappear once you land, since the player hasn't named Setzer yet (the trigger for getting to keep an airship). All sorts of chaos can be caused - take Banon to the World of Ruin or have him sing at the opera (with a sprite that explodes when he sings!) Get General Leo in your party! Have Terra take Maduin's place in the flashback, have G-Rated Sex with her own mother, and father herself!
    • It was possible thanks to a glitch to skip the meeting with Celes entirely. The highly amusing result was that the game replaced her character with Kutan (Moghan in the GBA version), a moogle from the beginning. This was more funny than useful, of course, as Kutan is extremely weak, has very bad equipment until the opera scene, after which he has none at all, cannot learn magic, and cannot have his stats boosted. This is especially a problem at the start of the second half of the game, in which you have to play him solo until you reach the first town.
    • The second half of the game is a Wide Open Sandbox where you spend much of your time Putting the Band Back Together. Since all but three characters are optional, the ending sequences were set up so that each character's vignette only had the three mandatory characters as supporting cast (or has an alternate version where one of those three can replace a character you didn't recruit). Since Terra is also essential to the ending, but is optional to recruit, she awkwardly arrives at The Very Definitely Final Dungeon on her own if you don't recruit her.
  • Final Fantasy VII:
    • You can't skip the extended sequence in Kalm by hiking over the swamp to the Mythril Mines on a Chocobo - Cloud will complain that there's something he's forgotten to do and ask the Chocobo to wait for him outside before the other party members block his path. However, it is possible to outrun the Midgar Zolom in the swamp without a Chocobo by repeatedly saving and reloading. Doing so skips the Chocobo catching at the Chocobo farm. There's also various ways of evading the Zolom by predicting its movement patterns. Alternatively, if your party is powerful enough, you can kill it instead.
    • It is also possible to bypass the sequence where Cloud sees the Zolom corpse on the tree through beginning to take a step and then summoning the menu repeatedly to inch through the trigger zone. This is useless (except for Speedrunning), but it can be fun to come back and trigger the scene later with Yuffie in your party, as she has dialogue written for the scene despite it not being possible to have her as a party member at the time you're supposed to see it.
    • The entire ending setpiece of Disc 2, the return to Midgar, can be skipped due to a cutscene programming error that lhid Cloud but left the Cloud movement flag on. This allows the player to merely run right from a cutaway scene in the Shinra tower, into the scene with Hojo, and at which point the pre-boss cutscene is triggered by Cloud's presence.
    • A glitch in the PC version known as the "Yuffie Warp" allows you to bring your party into a totally different save file by killing Yuffie. This can allow you to get to the bottom of the Northern Crater with Cloud at Level 11, Aeris still alive, and an invisible Cait Sith going by Cloud's name and permanently stuck at Level 1 (thanks to him sharing a party slot with the 16-year-old Cloud, and his data not overwriting the slot until Cait Sith is encountered legitimately).
  • In one of the first towns of Final Fantasy IX, it is possible to view certain cutscenes out of sequence merely by going to part of the town in the wrong order. This will cause Zidane to already know about things he shouldn't, only to be clueless later.
    • It's easy to exploit a bug in disc three by getting a gold Chocobo early, then skipping nearly to the end of the disc while skipping a few Scrappy Levels and messing your plot up. This results in the resident White Magician Girl staying in a state where she randomly fails to use her commands for the rest of the game unless you hack it back to how it should be at that point.
  • Final Fantasy XII absolutely breathes this trope, and is one of the reasons why a "122333" game is possible. As a simple example, one can fight (and defeat) Cuchulain before even leaving Dalmasca for Jahara. There are countless other examples of sequence breaking into high-level areas or gaining endgame equipment as well.
  • In Golden Sun, it was possible for the party to completely bypass Kolima, the town of people-turned-trees they were supposed to be healing, instead heading north to a village intended for higher-leveled characters. There, a quest could be started that would make the healer Mia join the party. It's perfectly possible to complete that quest to unlock the Hermes Water that's used to heal Tret, the tree that cursed everyone. The player could then backtrack to the tree town and breeze through a series of events designed for a three-character team, and save a return trip to Kolima Forest where Tret is located. To the game's credit, a few rushed dialogue alterations were made for cutscenes that did not originally have Mia in them; it's likely that the overlooked opportunity was recognized a few days before deadline and it was too late to stick a barrier in between the areas.
    • It's also possible to get through Mogall Forest without the Orb of Force from Fuchin Temple (anyone with a map could do it, although it can also be passed through sheer luck, or trial and error.) Since the Orb of Force is never used again until the sequel (unless you're obsessed with winning everything in Colosso), you could easily get through the entire game without realizing anything was wrong, unless you looked at the manual and realized there was still a Psynergy you were missing. You'll need Force to get 100% Completion in the sequel, though, so you'd better get it.
      • As with the above, the developers planned for this eventuality, since there's a puzzle at the end of the very next dungeon that requires the use of Force. When you reach it, Garet simply solves it for you.
    • Then there's the entire continent of Osenia in the second game. When you first cross the bridge from Madra, you're supposed to go south to Mikasalla, a boring little town that has almost no purpose but to inform you about the village of Garoh, which is sets the stage for Air's Rock. Only once you've finished at Air's Rock are you supposed to go through the Yampi Desert to Alhafra. However, there is nothing in the game to tell you this, and the entrance to Yampi Desert is much easier to find than the path to Mikasalla, meaning that it's quite easy to end up in Yampi Desert much earlier than you ought to. Yampi Desert also has a southern exit that takes you out to Air's Rock before even reaching Garoh, and would make both Garoh and Mikasalla all but pointless to visit if they didn't each contain a Djinni - which, if you play things in order, would require a return visit to get, since you need Reveal/Scoop from Air's Rock/Yampi Desert, respectively, to get them. Going straight to Alhafra and attempting to fix the boat you're looking for right away also leads to you fighting Briggs about five levels early.
    • Both games contain a glitch known as the Retreat Glitch which involves setting the Retreat Psynergy to a shortcut and then using it when your PP is too low for it. The game accidentally gives the current room the door and chest properties of the room the player's supposed to teleport to, which leads to all sorts of weird things when that room contains more of them than the intended one.
      • The buggiest use of it is to skip recruiting Mia in the Mercury Lighthouse by taking a door that leads straight to the lighthouse aerie. This bugs the cutscene with Saturos. An even better effect is that when the game recalculates your party during the Colosso tournament, it'll clone whoever your first party member is at the time, giving him two turns in battle but also making him two valid targets, since the two share an HP bar.
      • The Lost Age 's strongest weapon and Summon can both be found way earlier than intended through this. In Air's Rock, by entering the interior from the shortcut door and using the glitch in an upper area, picking up a Psynergy Stone found there instead gives you the Sol Blade, which is usually found three-quarters of the way through the final dungeon. Although only Felix can equip it at the time, it still breaks encounters wide open for about half the game. Oh, and the Stone respawns, allowing for an infinite number of them to be collected and sold. Likewise, the Iris tablet can obtained with the glitch in the singular chest in the entry area to the Anemos Inner Sanctum. This skips the entire dungeon (including the endgame Psynergy required to reach it) and its boss, the Dullahan. It's also the only way of obtaining Iris without a password transfer from the first game.
      • To break the Osenia sequence even further, you can warp to Gondowan early and have Piers join your party in Kibombo while he's still in jail. You need to beat Briggs eventually to unlock the forge, but you can take Piers with you into the battle while everyone talks about freeing him from prison. There's surprisingly even some different dialogue for if you meet Piers in Gondowan before meeting him in prison, although you can't have the Scoop Psynergy by that point, so you'll have to turn around right after meeting him and leave him behind.
      • There are all sorts of minor skips within dungeons in the first two games, sometimes leading to weird dialogue scenes when you enter rooms from the wrong direction. Saving and reloading the game with the glitch active will teleport Isaac/Felix to the coordinates of the Retreat location still within the same room, potentially out of bounds. The tiles out of bounds are loaded from the game's RAM, leading to strange behaviors and even the possibility of accessing doors to allow for more shenanigans. The last third of Lamakan Desert in the first game can be skipped this way by interacting with the trigger for the boss which is loaded offscreen.
    • The third game doesn't have options for skipping ahead in the sequence; instead, it lets you go backwards. At the end of the game, if you stand on a certain raised part of the Endless Wall on the overworld and save, when you reload your game, you'll clip through it and out of bounds, allowing you to walk anywhere other than on water as long as you remain out-of-bounds, thereby letting you get back to areas that should've long since been blocked off and even visit areas that you never get to visit in normal play (e.g. the non-Dream Bilibin side of Border Town). Equally amusingly, the sun will still be shining in areas such as Port Rago and Te Rya Village, despite them being well within the boundaries of the Grave Eclipse, because they were never meant to be accessed after it begins. You can even find Briggs alive and well aboard his ship in Port Rago, despite the fact that he died during your escape from Belinsk at the start of the Grave Eclipse and his ship being the same one that you most likely left docked at Tonfon when you went to the Endless Wall. Be careful not to save in any such area, however, because as mentioned before, you only have the ability to move freely about the map as long as you're not in a valid map location; moving back in-bounds will leave you stuck in that area, unable to return to the future content.
  • In Knights of the Old Republic, there are quite a few methods of sequence breaking. The most well known and most versatile method is to use a glitch to gain hundreds of skill points, investing around 80 or so in security, which will allow you to unlock any door, even if they are never meant to be unlocked under normal means. This can allow you to skip the majority of Taris, including the Undercity and the Vulkar base, along with most of the content on the final planet. Aside from this, there is a known way to clip through the door to the submersible on Manaan, skipping both the entire break in to the Sith base and the ensuing court trial.
  • In Lands of Lore 2, the path to the Savage Jungle is closed off by an Insurmountable Waist-Height Fence until the player has fulfilled the Old Caves quest. However, it is possible to get past that fence by jumping around in lizard form. When you get to the Savage Jungle, the game will treat you as if you had gotten there properly. You will, however, not possess a crucial item, meaning that the good path is not open to you - you'll have to play evil to ever see the end of the game. It is also possible to explore the ruins in the caves without getting the flute you need to summon the elevator by jumping down, taking some damage in the process.
  • Lufia:
    • Once you get the ship in Lufia & The Fortress of Doom, it's possible to reach areas you're not meant to visit until later in the game, allowing you to purchase much stronger equipment and grind against tougher enemies. One particular dungeon can be completed before the game requires you to—if you do, the boss at the top won't be present and you can obtain the otherwise-Rare Random Drop Might Helm from the chest that will later contain a needed key.
    • In Lufia: The Legend Returns, visiting the Monster Track before the plot requires you to will earn you a Bunny Blade.
  • In Metal Saga while it's a sandbox game without a particular order to follow it's strongly expected of you to fight and level up until you can safely reach the last town, as the monsters become increasingly more powerful and if you are weak enough you can't even do scratch damage to them while they do a one-hit kill. However, with you can fleeing the random battles and go to the town with the train. The train can bypass most of the towns and you can also gamble enough to have tons of cash for the powerhouse weapons you can buy at the last town. When you're at the last town, you can buy rail guns and other cutting edge equipment before returning to whatever town you want to. With your new kit, your dune buggy and whatever tank you managed to find will have early enemy attacks bouncing off for no damage. After at, everything except but the final stages becomes a cake walk.
  • MOTHER allows for massive sequence breaking. It's possible skip Ana and Teddy entirely, because they're not needed in order to finish the game. However, Loid is needed to clear the path to the train station and to reach EVE. Simply don't go to Snowman or Ellay, however most enemies will be harder to kill due to playing with less party members. When the ending is shown, it will show what happened to Ana and Teddy, even though you never met them.
    • In the seventh chapter of MOTHER 3, there are several needles that are able to be done in any order; for example, you can do the volcano dungeon before getting Kumatora. Of course, this can make some bosses annoyingly difficult, because you don't have the experience that the game expects you to have.
  • Several obstacles in the various Pokémon games require you to beat a Gym Leader, then get an HM from a separate area to use to advance. However, trading from another copy of the game can let you bypass the areas where the HMs are obtained. For instance, trading a Pokémon with Cut into the original games could let you bypass the S.S. Anne, beat the game, then go back and hear your rival boast about his Mons that are 30-40 levels lower than they were a few hours ago.
    • Also relating to the SS Anne, if you obtain Cut then deliberately let all your Pokemon faint in a battle on the ship, you will skip the scene of the SS Anne leaving. You can then return to the ship later when you have Surf, and by surfing off the gangplank can reach the notorious "Truck" on the dockside.
    • The Flash HM is completely optional as you can still go through the dark caves by looking closely at the screen (or memorizing the way).
    • In Pokémon Red, Blue, and Yellow you can skip getting the Silph Scope entirely, simply by using a Poké Doll on the Marowak Ghost in the Pokémon Tower. Fixed in the remake.
    • The Seafoam Islands can be skipped entirely by surfing down Route 21 from Pallet Town instead of surfing down Routes 19-20 from Fuchsia City.
    • In Pokémon Red and Blue, the plot-barriers for most of the game are mostly contingent on your progress towards defeating Team Rocket, rather than on defeating Gym Leaders. As a result, it's possible (and in fact so trivially easy that players often do it by accident!) to fight Lt. Surge, Erika, Koga, Sabrina, and Blaine in almost any order, the only requirement being that Koga (who gives you the ability to cross water) has to come before Blaine (who's on an island). Even the anime adaptation has Ash fighting Sabrina before Erika. Brock, however, must be defeated first, as a NPC will keep on showing you to the gym if you try to head to Mt. Moon before getting the badge, and there is no way around this (outside of glitching), Misty must be beaten second, as without the Cascade Badge, you can't use Cut outside of battle and so cannot enter the second half of Kanto, let alone get any other HMs, and Giovanni must be defeated last, as he doesn't return to his gym until after you've obtained the other 7 badges, which requires Team Rocket to have been defeated at Silph Co anyway, as Sabrina's gym is blocked until you defeat Team Rocket in Silph Co.
    • If you have access to Pokémon Stadium (which lets you transfer items), you can get into Saffron City with one Badge. Doing so lets you entirely skip the Rock Tunnel, and skip Misty (the second leader) until you've beaten other Gyms; she has to come before Erika (and either Misty or Koga is needed to fight Surge), but it's entirely possible to beat Blaine (the seventh leader) before her.
    • Some more severe sequence breaking in Pokémon Red and Blue allows you to fight the Gym Leaders in almost any order and to permanently skip the first and last Leaders, and Yellow has a glitch that allows you to access memory pointers as inventory items, at which point you swap items around until the game is fooled into loading the final cutscene.
  • Pokémon Gold and Silver has a fork in the road at Ecruteak City. Going west to Olivine City is the 'canonical' course, but everything you need to go east to Mahogany Town is available in Ecruteak City. By doing this, you can get to the Lake of Rage and even the last Gym's city much earlier than you're supposed to. The Trainers on both courses are of similar difficulty, so you could easily do this without trying. This was partly addressed in Crystal: you can't get to the last city until you're supposed to, but other than that, the same applies.
  • In Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire, the Dewford Gym's badge lets you use Flash outside of battle. The nearby cave contains an important Key Item, but most of it is almost completely dark. However, Flash isn't required to navigate, just strongly recommended. If you want to, you can go through the cave in the dark, skip the Gym and leave it for later in the game, when you can probably win the battle in two or three turns (possibly helped by the partially-Ghost-type Sableye, which can be found deep in the cavenote  and is immune to the element that Brawly specializes in). You still need to defeat Brawly in order to challenge Norman, however — instead of checking for the fourth badge alone, he checks for all four to that point. The remakes changed Granite Cave completely, however, so you can't do much in there until after you've beaten the gym, and can't go far in until later.
    • Similarly, you can bypass the Fortree Gym until after you've defeated the Sootopolis Gym Leader — though again, all eight badges are required to progress to the Pokémon League. Due to the high amount of Water Routes in the games (which have high random encounter rates), and Fortree Gym's HM activation is for Fly, it is wiser to just get the badge as soon as you get the Devon Scope. Fixed in the remakes; there is an Ace Trainer that blocks your way on the only route to Lilicove City and Mt. Pyre until you get the badge.
  • Shining Force is mostly pretty well-protected against Sequence Breaking (Broken Bridges are properly placed, etc.), but there is one opportunity to sequence-break that makes the game harder, by skipping the first group of characters that are supposed to join you. It gets funny later, since the characters you were supposed to get have lines in some of the dialogue scenes, and those lines will show up even if you never got the characters. Similarly, it is very easy to skip recruiting Anri if you are so inclined. She has lines in at least one dialogue scene. Luckily, all other characters that can be skipped do not have dialogue except when you're talking directly to them.
  • In Skies of Arcadia, you can travel to and explore the skies around the Lands of Ice as soon as you get the Delphinus and pay to finish construction on its engine. You can't land in Glacia until you're supposed to go there for the story, but you can make a nice chunk of change from the discoveries.
  • It's possible to skip the first major boss in Super Mario RPG by pulling off a very precise jump. The only major side effect of the glitch is that the Star Piece option never shows up in the menu; the game can still be completed despite missing one of the seven titular Plot Coupons.
    • In one spot in Kero Sewers, you can jump on a Boo's head, run away, and exploit the brief period of invincibility to use the Boo as a platform to a pipe that leads to Land's End, more than 75% through the game. The dev team actually coded in a reaction for this.
  • In Suikoden II, walking into a specific gate will push it right off its hinges and allow you to skip far ahead in the story, encountering monsters many times your current level and recruiting characters with no good reason to join your army just yet. Alas, move too far forward and you risk glitching the game beyond repair, but if you can survive just one fight, you'll gain enough experience to breeze through the game for a long while.
  • Tales of the Abyss is possibly the all-time champion for traditional console RPGs, thanks to a glitch that lets you go anywhere on the world map whenever you want. It's possible to skip ahead in the plot, get critical items and vehicles early, and so on.
  • Tales of Destiny: While the game is supposed to allow you to decide which order to do a few quests in, not doing them in the order the game expects (such as going to Trash Mountain before the Swordian R&D Lab, which is supposed to be allowed) can cause glitches to ruin your gameplay experience.
  • Tales of Symphonia lets you pick after completing the fire seal whether you want to take the intended route and cross the sea to Palmacosta, or go around the north and tackle the remaining Sylvarant seals in the reverse order. The story changes slightly to reflect the altered order of events, but the enemy levels stay the same, and you can't go back and change your mind (and get no warning that you're about to cross a Point of No Return), so players who are particularly thorough about exploring the world map may accidentally get themselves into a nearly-unwinnable situation.
    • As soon as you see the scene where Sheena announces that she's a summoner at Lake Umacy, you can go to the Seals of Wind or Fire to make pacts with Sylph and Efreet respectively, which you aren't directed to do until much later in the game. The bosses have much less health and deal less damage than they will if you wait until after visiting Tethe'alla, unless you're playing on "Hard" or "Mania" difficulty. Sheena will even Lampshade it if you make a pact with one of them before you make a pact with Undine, which you are directed to do.
  • Tales of Vesperia has an incident that wholly ignores Sequence Breaking entirely in New Game Plus runs. When you visit Halure, you find the barrier tree dying, and one party member suggests getting a panacea bottle in order to heal it. If you recovered your items from the last playthrough it's possible to have multiple panacea bottles which you will conveniently forget about in order to learn about how to synthesise items all over again.
  • In Ultima IX the player is unable to swim and thus prevented from reaching other islands early in the game. The player can avoid this restriction by using items that float, such as loaves of bread, to create a bridge of stepping "stones." Also, due to the buggy nature of the game, it is actually possible to skip large chunks of it simply by finding the sections of mountain that you can leap over. It is literally as easy as pressing "jump" while the cursor is pointed in the right places.
    • Worlds of Ultima: The Savage Empire required you to kill the Myrmidex queen to finish the game. It was possible to skip large portions of the game by using a vine on one of the entrances to the underworld, and fighting through all the Myrmidex to reach the queen, rather than using the drum. This becomes easier once you figure out that one of the characters (Yunapotli) is invulnerable, and once you've got the radar that tells you where to go.
  • In Undertale, the Punch Card, an otherwise practically useless item, can glitch out certain state transitions when used with frame precision. Speed Runs have abused it to bypass a large number of cutscenes and Boss Battles, including almost every appearance of Mettaton.
  • In WildARMs1, you're given the opportunity to choose to do a quest chain in Saint Centour or bypass it and do Port Timney first. The idea is that you will eventually do both because there is one magic key in each town, and you need both to make it past two locked doors to progress with the game. However, you can use the 255 item glitch to simply copy the key from Port Timney and completely bypass Saint Centour and its area dungeon, Cage Tower. This makes visiting the town later on a little odd as certain characters act and speak as if the town is completely empty when it... isn't.
  • In Xenoblade Chronicles X it's possible through careful mountain climbing to find and enter Bedrock Hold in Primordia and meet Ganglion forces before the story introduces them. Later cutscenes will still have characters surprised to meet them anyway. This is a bit strange since they put invisible walls to prevent you from entering other regions from over the mountains until the story allows it yet missed this one area.
  • Plenty of poorly made RPG Maker games usually have this in some form, especially when a creator doesn't know how to use switches. Examples:
    • There is often little to no warning about the monsters' strength, so when you expect to encounter a Slime (The first enemy in most RPG Maker games using preset troops, Ghost takes its spot in XP, and Bat does the same thing in MV), you may encounter Vampires, Succubi, and various other monsters that can bulldoze your team at that point in the game. Some even allow you to complete the game without fighting the final boss!
    • Poor positioning of treasure chests or similar item sources can have this effect as well. Say the characters must move through a labyrinth or mountain range or such, are standing on a tile and next to them is a treasure chest located on a tile that is on a different "elevation"; due to the pseudo-3d nature of the engine, the chest can most likely be opened unless coded specifically to prevent that, which often saves a lot of walking around.

    Real Time Strategy 
  • The player in this video beat That One Level in Battalion Wars 2 by sending his Infantry directly to the enemy Airbase - normally you're supposed to defend your own Airbase first.
    • In the first game, you could beat the mission "Black Gold" with one unit (and the required bomber at the end) using some clever combat rolls and dodging tank fire.
  • Command & Conquer:
    • In Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2, you can do this in the 7th Allied Mission. The actual mission is hard, forcing you to defend Pearl Harbor against waves of submarines and dreadnoughts, parachuting conscripts and terror drones and tanks coming from the north. Oh, and the Soviets have a nuclear missile silo through which they will nuke your War Factory into oblivion. Repeatedly. How to get around this? Start the mission, build a bunch of rocketeers, fly them to the island that the Soviets overrun in the opening minutes, destroy the MCV as it rolls ashore, mop up. This can be done in ten minutes, tops.
    • Or, better yet, just take the ships you have at the beginning of the mission and send them to the coast west of the AI's allied base (you are able to see it at the beginning). Simply ignore anything else and concentrate on taking out the last two Soviet transports that arrive on the map (ignoring the first wave of four; these are in the second group) at the end (usually the slowest-moving one in the last wave is carrying the MCV, or it'll be the one next to that. Sink the transport, or even wait until it drops off the MCV and hose that with your ships before it can deploy, and the only Soviet structure you have to take out is a sentry gun. Total time to complete? Three and a half minutes.
      • The same thing can be done in one of the early Soviet missions, where the Koreans try to establish a base.
      • Something similar can be done in the 10th Allied mission, where you have to protect Einstein's lab, and the Soviets set up their bases in the first few minutes before producing units and attacking. If you start building tanks and infantry as soon as possible and send all your units to the place where the Soviets are supposed to build their bases, you can destroy at least two of the three bases they'd normally build, possibly even all of them. Also, the Soviet second-to-last mission, where both you and Yuri get huge forces, is normally one of the most difficult in the game. However, you get two Kirovs at the start, and while hard it's possible to manouver these along the left side of the map, all the way to the top, and then to the right. Most likely one of them will be destroyed and the other will barely make it, but there are no anti-air defenses around the target, so you can just let your Kirov destroy it at its leisure. Again, this can easily be done in five minutes.
      • Yuri's Revenge has the inverse of this in the second Soviet mission. Instead of slowly destroying all the Allied bases, you can simply rally your tanks, drive along the northern and western borders straight to Einstein's lab and shoot it to oblivion. Mission complete.
      • And in the Allied campaign, missions 3 and 4. Mission three requires either a big, slow ground assault on the Psychic Beacon - or (much easier to build) a fleet of 16+ Harrier jets; enough of them will survive the antiair defenses to blast the Beacon into oblivion. Mission 4 (except on the hardest difficulty mode) expects you to clear a beachhead with Destroyers and Rocketeers and then build a base, but it's possible to cruise right up the canal to the Psychic Amplifier, using the landing craft and rocketeers for cannon fodder, and blowing the Amplifier to pieces with just the starting Destroyers.
      • In the 6th Soviet mission you have to sink the American fleet in Pearl Harbor, which would require destroying the Allied Base and the Korean reinforcements. Turns out that the only thing you need to destroy is the actual American fleet, which can be done simply by building a group of subs and sneaking them in to the Harbor before the Koreans even arrive.
      • In some of the Allied missions, you start with or can find a small team of engineers and money. If you can take an enemy War Factory, refinery, and possibly a barracks, you can spam units and level the things you're supposed to destroy. Better yet, if you beat the mission fast enough, the report says that the soviets are impressed with your skills at "stealthy destruction".
      • In the last mission of the Empire campaign in Red Alert 3, using either Tanya or Natasha on the Future Tech lab results in the obvious instant kill, skipping the small battle sequence that would normally commence as well as some videos.
      • In one of the allied missions you have to stop a limo from reaching the enemy base before you can destroy it. You're expected to break through in a slow battle of atrrition. You'll probably just solve it by building a large group of century bombers and simply fly through, the century bomber being durable enough that most of them will get through to unload their bombs.
    • In Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars, the GDI Cairo mission requires the player to sabotage Nod power plants to delay their nuclear missile launch. This is done by either jump-jetting infantry or using air units to bypass a small part of the Nod base that has no air defenses, and then blowing up the power plants. However, the player can instead opt to complete the mission by ignoring the power plants completely and taking out the Nod base the tried-and-true GDI way: full frontal assault with Mammoth Tanks. Another alternate is to build enough Orcas (about 12) to get through the air defenses and take out the nuke itself, then destroy the rest of the base at your leisure.
    • Similarly, in Command & Conquer: Tiberian Sun Firestorm, one of the GDI missions involves piercing through sizable enemy protections to reach CABAL's core. However, with judicious application of the EM Pulse and your new Mobile EMPs, it was possible to pierce through to the objective without even bothering with the technicians who could drop the laser fences or even destroy the strengthened posts themselves. Not to mention the only things that NOD had near the core that weren't affected by EMP were Engineers.
      • The final mission for GDI in that game is hilariously easy. CABAL's real core is protected by the nigh impenetrable Firestorm Defense, and you must capture 3 service stations to shut it down. However, the developers likely forgot that one Ion Cannon blast can destroy the Firestorm Generator, bypassing the entire sequence. They had a failsafe for this: the Core Defender, a massive robot that had a rapid firing one-hit-KO laser and was impervious to all attacks....but it couldn't swim. Lure him onto a bridge, then blow it up, and instantly CABAL's core becomes a sitting duck.
      • The computer will never attack something that's in stealth until it is brought out of stealth. Build a Stealth generator with laser fences in radius and deactivate the fences. When the Defender gets between two posts, reactivate them and insta-gib. Same can be said with the Firestorm.
      • In fact, it is possible to destroy CABAL's core in both GDI and Nod final missions without shutting down the Firestorm generator and therefore without activating the Core Defender. GDI has Disruptor tanks that can use their sonic attack through ANY walls, including an active Firestorm barrier. The Brotherhood of Nod can use a more subtle approach - it is possible to deploy an MCV into a Construction Yard right in front of the core and quickly build up two-three Obelisks of Light. Their lasers completely ignore the Firestorm barrier, leaving only a single pathetic CABAL Obelisk to protect the core.
      • In all of the games there are a number of "stealth" missions, where you're given a limited number of units and are expected to take a certain route, since any other route is blocked off or too heavily-defended to shoot your way through. Certain stealth missions, however, provide you with engineers and enemies with full-on bases. With some careful micromanagement, it's entirely possible to take control of the enemy's refineries and construction yard and turn what was suppose to be a stealth mission into a straight up tank rush. Later games migated this fact by forbidding the actual construction of anything, with any and all attackers being spawned by script rather than being produced and the buildings and harvesters there simply for show.
  • In Creeper World's final level, you're supposed to build up your defences to keep the Creeper from climbing over the wall or through the narrow pass, long enough for the tech for The Thor to appear outside the walls. You then need to establish a few weapons outside the walls to keep the area clear long enough to grab the needed tech. However, there's nothing keeping you from continuing to build outside the walls, pushing the creeper back, capping all eight Creeper emitters, and activating the totems to finish the level without ever building Thor. This used to result in the game crashing, but was patched in later editions to take the feat into account.
  • In Dawn of War: Dark Crusade when you assault the home region of the Space Marines, your sole objective is to destroy their HQ. If you play as Tau, and have upgraded your Commander sufficiently, which includes euqipping him with a Jet Pack, stealth gear and a metric Frakton of firepower, he'll be perfectly capable to bypass all the enemy defences, tuck away in the corner of the enemy base and gradually pick off at the HQ untill it's gone. Whereupon you will be treated to a cutscene where your army advances against the valiant defenders of the base and overwhelmes their resistance, none of which actually happened.
    • Similarly, when attacking the Space Marine base as Imperial Guard, you can capture the enemy's Orbital Strike, use your Auspex to find the enemy HQ and then drop the orbital strike on it.
    • As Necrons you can do the same against the Imperial Guard in their stronghold. Rather than bother with multiple units of guardsmen, artillery, Leman Russ tanks etc, just upgrade your Necron Lord with Essence of the Nightbringer, then teleport along the river which has multiple small islands. Since your only objective is to destroy the enemy HQ, teleport there, use the essence and rip it down. Doing this however prevents the chance to capture and use the absolutely awesome Titan cannon for the mission.
    • In Soulstorm, the Dark Eldar stronghold starts as a Baseless Mission where you rescue units held in torture cages. The final units are builders, which you're supposed to use to build an HQ building and then a base, and from there destroy the Soul Cages and the Dais of Destruction. However, it turns out they can also build basic production buildings (but not generators), and the Dark Eldar won't attack until you've completed your HQ building. It is entirely possible to beat the map in less than half an hour by overwhelming the Dais of Destruction with your cheapest infantry.
      • Flying and jump-capable units as a whole can do this. Nearly every map that has hard-to-reach objectives that must be destroyed to continue (Eldar, Chaos, Sisters...) can be taken out by sufficient application of airborne firepower, leaving your main force to defend the base.
    • Any objective in Dark Crusade or Soulstorm can be completely broken by the guardsmen using a combination of the Auspex and Basilisks to destroy them. Most stronghold missions will devolve into "how fast can I build up 3 basilisks and get close enough to their base" rather than completing objectives.
    • The Eldar stronghold in Soulstorm is protected by a series of holographic cliffs, requiring you to destroy their projectors to reveal the path. However, since you know the actual location of the base, if playing as the Necrons you can simply teleport an upgraded Monolith into their base after destroying only one of them. Then, because it still counts as a building, it can be used to teleport in the entire rest of the army.
    • The mission "Sacrifice" in the original Dawn of War is a difficult battle where you are expected to first clear your side of the map out, and then cross the river that divides it before fighting through heavy Eldar defences. If you're not feeling up to doing the gauntlet with an attack force, however, a large force of Assault Marines and Land Speeders jumped across the river can clear the north side out fairly easily.
  • A Terran mission in StarCraft requires you to rescue a crashed Battlecruiser and its crew. The game expects you to take the long way along the outside edge of the map, through two enemy bases, and head down into the crater from there. Or, you can use a flying building or comsat sweeps to reveal the cliffs around the crater, destroy the enemy turrets there, then use Dropships to ferry units onto the cliff and clear out the defenders with ease since they're mostly anti-air defenses unprepared for ground attacks.
    • The second Protoss mission has you wait 15 minutes to receive reinforcements from an ally before you destroy the enemy base, but with determination you can still do it on your own and receive message of congratulations from him.
    • The first Terran mission of the expansion Brood War pits you against a heavily defended enemy outpost, and you have no Vespene Gas and are thus restricted to only the most basic units. The game expects you to make contact with another officer who gives you gas and access to the base's much more lightly defended back door. By taking advantage of the fact Terrans can lift off and fly their buildings, you can fly a Barracks or two to this "backdoor" route and then go and take out the enemy base without ever meeting the other officer. This results in you winning the mission and receiving the "congratulations" message from the officer you never met.
    • In the final Protoss mission you are supposed to deliver your heroes to the Xel-Naga Temple and then protect it until it charges up. Naturally, by the time it happens, the temple will be nearly overrun by the Zerg, which matches the ending cinematic. However you can instead scour the area clear of all Zerg, then activate the temple, wait out the timer and still be treated to the same cinematic where it's being besieged by them.
    • Similar to various Command & Conquer examples below, a Zerg mission allows you to hide some units in the initial scripted destruction of your various bases, and then use them to intercept the units coming to build new enemy bases. There are four bases to intercept, but each one you succeed at makes the mission considerably easier.
    • In complete turnabout from some of other C&C examples below, a certain Terran mission in the Expansion (you recognize it by being given Valkyries at the beginning against a mutalisk swarm) allows you to play it as a Stealth Mission. In a manner similar to some missions, your enemies do not do anything until you perform a certain action. In this case, it's completing a building (or landing one). With Science Vessels, Valkyries, Dropships, SCVs and Siege Tanks at your disposal it's entirely possible to completely wipe the three enemy bases and win the mission without building anything.
    • The famous Zerg Rush originated as a sequence breaking strategy in multiplayer StarCraft games. In a typical game, both players begin by gathering resources and balancing their expenditures to build units and structures for offense, defense, and faster resource gathering. Compared to the other playable factions in the game, the Zerg have the weakest but least expensive low-level attack units. A savvy player could pump out several of these units before their opponent was able to build up any defense at all, quickly wiping out the enemy base and bypassing almost all of the base-building stage of play.
  • StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty features missions that can be completed out of order. Early on in the "main" storyline (the Artifact missions), there is a mission where you and a Zerg enemy race towards a Protoss-controlled artifact. The game doesn't expect you to try and attack the Zerg directly, and it even chews you out for doing so. In addition the Zerg on this mission get free units and orbital drops. However, if you completed all the side missions prior to continuing the main storyline and pick the right research upgrades, you can have access to tech that allows you to defeat the zerg. Unique to this mission, however, the game does not register defeating the Zerg as a win condition or even a secondary objective (all other "grab and go" missions can be solved via sheer strength if you have the patience for it, and the game will acknowledge if you do so.) Moreover, if you defeat the Zerg and then complete the mission afterwards, a cutscene will trigger where the Zerg base is fully operational.
  • In Total Annihilation, there are many missions in which sequence breaking can be applied. Most notably in Arm Campaign mission 3, "Spider Technology". The briefing tells you to clear a path for 4 spiders, and then get them to your starting area. However, the enemy defense is so weak that sending the spiders off first thing will win you the mission.
    • Similarly, in some missions where your objective is to destroy or capture a specific building, you can simply have your commander immediately walk to the objective, and with some luck, accomplish the objective before they kill you.
  • In the original Warcraft strategy game, there is a later Humans mission where you have a base and a formidable starting army, but no peasants (worker units that gather gold and construct buildings) and not enough gold to build a peasant. Your peasants are held prisoner deep inside the enemy base and you are meant to use your unusually large starting forces to rescue them, bring them back to base, restart your economy and play it like any base building mission. However, if played right, your starting forces are enough to destroy the enemy base and win the mission! We in fact found this to be easier and quicker than rescuing the peasants which is actually quite difficult to do. By the time you've freed them, most of the enemy base is crippled or destroyed already, so you may as well press on and finish them off instead of retreating back to base to build up for another attack.
    • A human mission sends you with a small number of soldiers to kill Medivh. The intent is to navigate a maze-like cave, defeating various monsters, until you reach medivh. However, If you use the cleric's far seeing ability your be able to discover Midhev is in a cavern immediately above the starting position. In fact he is just barely close enough that a properly positioned archer can fire at him, through the cave walls apparently. Midivh will fire back necessitating healing of the archer and many breaks to refill mana, but it is possible to skip navigating any of the cave this way, and is a faster means of beating the mission even with the slow pace required to difeat midhev with a single archer.
  • In the expansion for Warcraft II, there is a particular mission called "The Razing of Auchindoun". You're -expected- to take your starting army to the south-east, capture a mine and wage a war of attrition from a hard to defend location, engaging in a grueling air and sea fight before finally razing the fortress of Auchindoun, all on a shoe-string budget. The strategy guide says something like "This mission is hard to complete, even with this guide". You can complete the whole thing in ten minutes by sailing all your ships, your three ballista, footmen, knights, two tough-as-nails heroes and some peasants into the place where Auchindoun Fortress is supposed to be to find a couple of towers and a mere stronghold building. Throw up some of your own towers in enemy territory, bombard the enemy towers with your battleships, knock out the barracks before they finish building it then have a celebratory barbecue and sail home.
  • Warcraft III:
    • In the "March of the Scourge" mission of the Alliance campaign you have to defend a town from the undead. As usual, in the last minute they'll push at you with an overwhelming force that you'll only be saved from by Uther's reinforcements arriving in the cutscene. Unless, of course, you destroy the undead bases, which is possible, then the cutscene will make no sense (but, ironically, will make Arthas' irritation with Uther much more understandable)
    • In the penultimate mission of the Alliance campaign you have only your heroes to complete the objectives, so you're supposed to hire monsters as mercenaries along the way. However, the mission is perfectly winnable with just your heroes, but the mercenaries will still be present in the final cinematic and will play an important role, as Arthas will use them as scapegoats for his extreme actions.
    • In the final mission, you're supposed to defend the World Tree from Archimonde's unstoppable assault, gradually losing all three of your bases just before the 45-minute timer ends and you complete the mission in the nick of time. However, with some careful tricks, it's possible to destroy the first undead base shortly after they take over the human base, kill Archimonde with a very time-consuming Death of a Thousand Cuts, and wait until the timer expires, doing nothing. The final cutscene will still play as if Archimonde was advancing to the World Tree, but instead of him there will be just an empty spot. You don't even need to kill him. He only advances once the next base is destroyed, so destroy the undead base that is built to replace the human one with ballistas hidden in the trees. Since this base is down, the other ones will never fall, and Archimonde won't move from the ruin of the old base.
    • Similarly, in the Ork campaign the orks are attacked by a Night Elf demigod Cenarius who is meant to only be defeatable through using the demon blood that corrupts the orks, so the next mission is about freeing them from its influence. But Cenarius is not invincible, only incredibly damage-resistant (less so than Archimonde though), so it's possible to kill without drinking the demon blood, but the ending cinematic and the plot will not account for that.

    Shooting Games 
  • A level in Star Wars: Rogue Squadron II requires the player to take down an Imperial Star Destroyer. You're supposed to do this after defending a Rebel frigate from a squad of TIE fighters (which conveniently gives the Empire craft time to attack another Rebel ship and therefore set up the next level), but the boss can be attacked at the start of the level and it's actually easier to attack it first, because this skips the need to fight the others. In fact, you more or less have to do this to obtain the medal for the mission.
    • In fact, you don't even have to actually fight the Star Destroyer—just find the bridge with your targeting computer and crash into it. End cutscene immediately starts, and you don't lose a life.
    • In the original Rogue Squadron, one mission requires you to kill a number of radar towers in a canyon without being detected. It's possible to skip this section by glitching through the canyon wall, but it leaves your speeder badly damaged. Good luck taking on the Imperial base.

    Simulation Games 
  • In Zeus: Master of Olympus the most challenging campaign was the Trojan War, which put you in the shoes of the Greek forces. The early part of the campaign was a lead-up to the actual war and Troy's military might was actually lower than once the war began. With a bit of delay and building up your forces, it was entirely possible to conquer Troy before the war even began.
  • In X3: Terran Conflict, the intended order to complete the plotlines is Terran PlotOperation: Final Fury → Goner Plot → Hub PlotHQ PlotAldrin Expansion → Treasure Hunt → New Home Plot → Balance of Power. Though none of the individual plots allow for internal sequence breaking (i.e. you can't skip missions), it is very easy to complete certain plots out of order. Players have reported finishing the Goner Plot before the Terran Plot, and the Aldrin Expansion only requires you to have completed the first half of the Hub plot.

    Sports Games 
  • A minor one in WWF Smackdown 2 is to is to add your character to a title division and then remove everyone but yourself and the champion. You will now be ranked #2, even after you put everyone else back in. You'll instantly have a title shot once you play Season Mode with that character. This saves many hours of having to work your way up the ranks.

    Stealth-Based Games 
  • One of the reasons the NES port of Metal Gear was hated so much was because it replaced a linear sequence where your CO would start lying to you and trying to trick you with an irritating puzzle involving trucks, which meant you could end up places you really shouldn't be in yet. And, thanks to bad programming, you can actually walk past any boss which doesn't drop an item (Machinegun Kid, the Twin Shot, and the Tank) allowing you to skip most of the game, including rescuing the Mad Scientist and his daughter. When you reach the Super Computer at the end, the programmers actually made it impossible to blow it up without having done everything. That said, a glitch made it possible to skip the Super Computer as well.
  • The "Team" objectives in Syphon Filter: The Omega Strain are only meant to be completed in co-op gameplay, however, some of them can be accomplished solo, such as rescuing the wounded SWAT officers in the third mission.
  • A certain stealth mission in Syphon Filter 2 involves a mountain bridge, which is rigged with bombs, and is guarded by a small army of mooks. Two minutes after level starts, their captain gives an order to blow these bombs; so you're expected to find a silent weapon, dispatch of him before that happens (without raising alarm, of course), and continue searching for bombs without any time limit. However, it's totally possible to disarm all four bombs in these two minutes, without breaking stealth as well. For some reason, you still lose the mission when the timer reaches 00.
  • In Thief: The Dark Project you can skip most of the "Return To The Cathedral" level by simply using a skull as a door-stop. If you prevent the entrance door from closing, then when the intelligent gem you have to steal locks the doors on you it doesn't do anything and you don't have to appease a priest ghost to get the explosives needed to blow open the side door. This lowers the difficulty of the level from much harder than the rest of the game to simply very hard. This Sequence-Break was unfortunately patched out of Thief Gold, the updated re-release.
    • You have to be careful about sequence breaking in this game. In an earlier level "The Lost City", you can get the water talisman early by jumping across a moat of lava without the bridge extended. Doing so leaves you in an unwinnable situation, since you cannot jump back. This is not an issue in the gold version, where the water talisman isn't in the lost city.
    • Also possible in the Lost City is a sequence-break involving the absolutely suicidal maneuver of combining Bunny-Hops with a rope arrow at just the right spot, while on top of the tower, to get off the tower's roof and over the lava pit without backtracking. Demonstrated by BobbinThreadbare here.

    Survival Horror 
  • Alien: Isolation:
    • In survivor mode, the map "Loose Ends" requires you to escape to an elevator. However the elevator is off power and its door is closed. The player is supposed to go to a nearby comm stat to reinitialize energy, which triggers the alien to come looking for him, and then backtrack to the elevator and escape. However, due to a bug, the player can "lean" inside the elevator and manage to press the button to win the challenge even with door closed, thus completely avoiding to escape from the xenomorph. This is mostly an Easy Level Trick rather, as there is no cinematic sequence or advancement in the plot in the meanwhile, although canon lore from the notes in-game assumes that the supposed character (Ransome) had to reactivate that elevator in his perils.
  • Haunting Ground: Several of the game's puzzles can be completed early or bypassed entirely during a second run. Special mention goes to the Lorenzo Glitch, which allows the player to cut out everything between Riccardo's defeat in the Water Tower and Young!Lorenzo's Boss Battle in the House of Truth by triggering a cutscene early using a Luminescent.
  • In the second part of the Yellow Area in Ib, you're meant to enter The Liar's room and solve the puzzle there, examine a seemingly blank painting twice, and examine the clothes of a fallen doll to get the numbers to plug into an equation to unlock the door containing the Apple for the Wall Lips. If you know the code, though, you can just plug it into the door and get the Apple immediately.
  • Incredibly minor, but possible in one instance Resident Evil. A puzzle requires you to grab one item, run to the other side and grab the second item before a statue spots you. Or you can stand on the edge of a table and just reach for the second item, skipping the running part.

    Tabletop RPG 
  • In Dungeons & Dragons, one tactic that's sure to have your DM pissed at you is to scry on a dungeon's Final Boss, then use a teleport spell to head right to its lair, bypassing the entire dungeon. Nowadays, there are official spells meant to counteract this tactic; there are spells to block certain areas from being teleported into, spells to redirect teleports into another area entirely, and still more spells to delay an incoming teleport for a number of rounds and warn the villain so that he can be ready to deal with the party. Still, "Scry and Die" maneuvers are a tactic of first resort, and if the villain isn't a magic-user, it can begin to stretch suspension of disbelief for the DM to come up with way to thwart them.
    • Some D&D adventures, especially from the early days of the game, overlook Sequence Breaking opportunities because their authors assumed the game was 100% combat. In the module "Curse of Xanathon", it's expected that the heroes, discovering the villain can't be killed by their attacks, will immediately set out on a Fetch Quest for his Soul Jar. If they simply tackle the guy, tie him up, and gag him, they can drag the Big Bad off to jail and thus foil his evil plans before they're even halfway through the module.
    • The "tackle, tie and suffocate" tactic became popular enough that some interactive/convention Living Greyhawk modules assumed you could do this to an unkillable bad guy, or otherwise would come up with a creative solution. The sequence breaker became an expected tactic.
    • In the D&D podcast The Adventure Zone, the players accidentally skip a long-sounding sequence by figuring out how to operate an enchanted map through trial and error and getting pointed straight to their intended destination.
  • Possible by design in several parts of Masks of Nyarlathotep because the campaign is designed to be non-linear. This is generally considered to be the wrong way to play the campaign. It's very possible for the players to do things like:
    • Destroy parts of the Great Gate before they even know they're important.
    • Destroy The Girdle of Nitocris early in Cairo, and kill the Spawn of Nyarlathotep before it's even born in Kenya, thus finishing those chapters a lot sooner.
    • Entirely skip the need for The Eye of Light and Darkness by using dynamite and cunning to thwart various rituals at the ritual sites instead.
    • Successfully end the campaign anywhere and still have the plot make sense, even if missing crucial information.
    • Skip entire chapters, since the campaign states that not every part of the Great Gate has to be destroyed - even ruining one piece would put a major kink in Nyarlathotep's plans.

    Tactical RPG 
  • While you can't skip levels, you can definitely skip or avoid entirely scripted events that happen in a level in Fire Emblem. Most of the time this is expected, as they give you the tools to do it and you get lower turn counts. Fight your way through the army and activate flags for reinforcements, other characters and extra bosses to appear... or use a warp staff to teleport a powerful character to the boss and kill him and finish the level, skipping the hullabaloo.
    • Other examples include the character recruitment sidequests in Fire Emblem Awakening. Most of them involve fighting your way to the unit you need to recruit and hope they survive until you make it, especially as the pretense involves those characters being in trouble and needing rescuing. Or you can use a Rescue Staff to teleport them to you from afar. With a high enough magic stat the range on the rescue staff can be such that you might not even need to move from the starting position. Then you can play through the level without worrying about making it to your distressed ally along the way. Especially notable in the level you get Nah: you're supposed to solve a puzzle involving the patterns of the constantly breaking and reconstructing walls to make it to her, as she appears to be in a completely closed off area. With the Rescue staff you can ignore that.
    • There are also times when the designers DON'T expect it, leading to truly odd things. Examples can be as minor as getting a support conversation that references a supposedly past event as its happening, to Game-Breaking Bug status when a level is scripted to continue after the death of certain characters, and you somehow manage to save them, at which point the game doesn't know what to do.

    Text Adventure 
  • In an old Apple ][ game called The Alpine Encounter, you had to find an urn with spy information in it within two days in a ski resort. The game has an incredibly elaborate sequence of how the urn is passed from enemy agent to enemy agent that remains the same each game; the trick being when you can intercept a drop-off. If you don't go anywhere until 9:45am (you can simply type "wait 2 hours") on the first day, and stay at the front desk entrance, you can steal the first spy's luggage containing the urn and call the Inspector (someone you shouldn't have met yet) and give the urn to him. This should take about 30 seconds.
  • In A Change in the Weather, you can skip the entire game. The game begins with the player character at a picnic, out of earshot of his friends, being moody. He wanders off to be alone, and then a sudden rainstorm occurs and he has to go through a series of events to avoid catching pnuemonia. Having done that, the game is then won by returning to the starting area and going back to the picnic and his friends. It was soon discovered that the same ending can be achieved by simply going back to the picnic at the start. When this was brought up, Plotkin delivered the immortal response: "Yes, it's intentional."
  • In The Hobbit (1982), it is possible (if extremely unlikely) to kill Smaug yourself with a sword.

    Third Person Shooters 
  • Body Harvest has a part in one of the America stages where you're in a military base the aliens are trying to terraform. A fast closing gate blocks your progress at one point, the intended solution being to get a can of nitro fuel and drive a jeep through the gate, the fuel speeding up the jeep just fast enough to make it. Instead, you can take a nimble car onto the high ledges and jump a gap at the edge of the level. You're then able to drive in a flat area the designers clearly intended to be inaccessible. Result: Skip almost the entire level and drive straight to the boss.
  • In Gears of War 2, in the sequence immediately before the the throne room, (the part where Marcus says that the suspiciously empty entrance to the throne room might be a trap before the floor drops out underneath you) you can use the crank on the center pillar to raise the floor back to the surface without fighting any of the guards. This is easier on Co-op, and is much more difficult on the higher difficulty levels as the barriers don't come up with you leaving you EXTREMELY open to enemy gunfire for quite a few seconds... long enough for them to down/kill you if you're on insane difficulty.
  • In Grand Theft Auto generally it's a nuisance to play chaperone for another character (their firepower is not much of a help when they play target practice for the enemy and you lose if they die). Whenever possible, drop them off where they can't get out and interfere. When the mission is won, the character will be back by magic anyway (e.g. Lance Vance in Vice City or Ryder in San Andreas).
  • In Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, it is possible to simply swim out of the parts of the game you're currently permitted to explore, but doing so sets the cops and even the navy on you. Most of this can avoided by making a jump over the guard building into the airport, getting into a plane and simply flying off (it does, however, mean flying while being attacked by Navy planes). Using this technique to complete all the optional goals before playing the actual story is a fairly popular Self-Imposed Challenge.
    • There are several missions in San Andreas that can be done in a way different from intended:
      • Robbing Uncle Sam: instead of opening the gate immediatelly after you enter the military base, you can kill every soldier already spawned on the place, then use the forklift to place the boxes near the entrance neatly waiting for when you finally shoot the gate's control panel to open and let Ryder take drive inside.
      • Wrong Side Of The Tracks: instead of driving alongside the train and let Big Smoke kill the Vagos, you can overtake the train, ride your dirtbike on top of a nearby building using a few ramps and a bridge, then jump on top of the train and use the AK47 or M4 to kill the Vagos yourself.
      • Badlands: Instead of facing off against the FBI agents to kill the witness, you can scare him into getting into his car and running away. When you're out of the FBI's range you can shoot his car until he bails and kill him easily.
      • Local Liquor Store: Why use the Quad Bike if you can leave a Sanchez nearby and use it to chase the thieves?
      • The Da Nang Thang: You lose all your weapons during the helicopter crash, but since there's no timer in this mission, you can go back to the city, stock up weapons, armor and ammo, the go back and finish the job.
      • Ice Cold Killa: Pop tires of Jizzy's car before entering the Pleasuredome. When he tries to flee using his car, it's much easier to chase him. Even better, park another car horizontally right in front of Jizzy's car - when he exits and tries to flee, he'll grind his gears going nowhere and you can shoot the car up at your leisure. And hey, if you brought a rocket launcher along, why not just use that?
      • Pier 69: Instead of jumping on the water and swimming after Ryder, just shoot him from the dock with the Sniper Rifle.
      • Toreno's Last Flight: Get a Heat Seeking Rocket Launcher before the start of the mission. When the chopper takes flight is just a matter of lock on it and fire. Same can be done in Interdiction.
      • In Misappropriation the games wants you to have a spectacular chase using among other things a helicopter. You can bypass it all by sneaking in quickly enough in the place where the case is, kill the guy who's carrying it, grab the case and flee.
      • There's actually two ways of beating High Noon. The first is pop the tires of Pulaski's Buffalo and chase him afterwards as normal, or you can get a Minigun and fire away as soon as the cop enters the car. A few seconds of blasting and the car will go up in flames. (Oddly enough the car will be intact in the cutscene and afterwards)
    • Other than that, there's still the side missions. The Chiliad Challenge for example. Instead of winning your races, you can come in dead last, and using a, sniper rifle, kill the competition after they crossed the finish line but you still haven't. Killing the competition also works on the Dirt Track.
  • Mass Effect 2 allows you to complete Mordin's loyalty mission after you've completed the Suicide Mission. That's not sequence breaking—although there's not much benefit to doing so, since you've already beaten the game, you can complete any loyalty mission after the SM (in fact, one mission has an extra optional scene if you complete it after the SM). What is sequence breaking is that you can complete Mordin's loyalty mission even if Mordin is dead. He will seemingly magically come back to life just to find his missing assistant. The fact that he's the only squadmate this works with is oddly appropriate.
  • Postal 2 has several of these. When the library is set on fire, the fastest way out is blocked by a wall of flames which is instant death to touch. However, if you set yourself on fire with gasoline (which is only damage over time), the game reads you as already taking fire damage and the wall of flames becomes harmless, giving you a speedy exit. Likewise, in the junkyard, the guard dogs throw you high in the air when you take a hit... letting you "jump" over a downed ladder and quickly get out.
    • At one point, the Postal Dude is kidnapped by rednecks and put into a gimp outfit (part of a Pulp Fiction parody). There's a cutscene where he realizes this and adds "Pick up laundry" to his errand list. During the escape from the redneck cabin, a very well-timed crouching jump allows the player to skip the "I'm the gimp!" cutscene, which prevents the "Pick up laundry" errand from activating and allows a quick completion of the level.
  • In Warframe, it's possible to skip large chunks of the boss fight against Councilor Vay Hek. Normally, squads are expected to engage his aerial drone form several times while chasing him through the map; once he's been driven to the final arena, players can force him into his Terra Frame and finish him off. However, there's absolutely nothing stopping players from ignoring Vay Hek and rushing to the final arena; Vay Hek will follow, allowing players to drive him into his Terra Frame more quickly. Since his aerial form only has one small weakpoint that can be damaged that isn't always active, while the Terra Frame can be damaged anywhere, many players recommend using this strategy to make the fight much less painful.

    Turn Based Strategy 
  • Spoofed in Disgaea 3: Absence of Justice. Beating the Hopeless Boss Fight in the first chapter nets you an ending where Mao and Almaz realize, after quite a bit of time wandering aimlessly, that their sequence-breaking rendered the game Unwinnable, and that they now have no choice but to reset.
  • In the final Haven mission in Heroes of Might and Magic V, it is possible to defeat the first Inferno hero with Godric without freeing Isabel first. This will trigger a cutscene with Isabel talking to Godric as if she's already freed. A similar situation occurs in the Academy mission 3, but that case is less innocent: trying to assault Markal's forces without freeing Godric beforehand crashes the game.
    • And in Tribes of the East, at least in version 3.0, it is possible to stop the supposedly-unstoppable assaults of your supporting heroes with quick button-mashing and either park them outside the Inferno towns if you absolutely can't win, or (for Kujin) take 900 cyclops from Gotai, reducing what can be the hardest fight in the entire campaign to a Curb-Stomp Battle.
  • Ridiculously easy in Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri, so much so that players can accidentally trigger "interludes" (pages of text that tell the plot about the awakening Voice) in odd orders - the voice can casually talk to you and then three hours later, speak for the first time and you're surprised, etc. Also, the wording of some of the "lower" endings, such as military or economic, make planet seem like a bigger mystery than she should and is, depending on how far you are in the game.
  • Technically speaking, there's nothing stopping you from charging Meduna directly in Jagged Alliance 2 after landing. In practical terms, though, you need to capture and secure the cities on the way to Meduna, because while enemy weapons get more and more effective the further south you go, your weapons do not. Even a modest upgrade in enemy capabilities — like, say, going from submachine guns to rifles — is going to be a major challenge if you're still wielding machine pistols. Saying that, there is a 7 minute speed run here.
  • While Fire Emblem has its game flow (a series of discrete chapters) set up in a way that prevents sequence breaking without memory-altering glitches or breaking out the gameshark, it is sometimes possible to short-circuit individual chapters, usually by Cutting the Knot on the objectives. Using a Rescue staff to teleport imperiled NPCs to safety, using a Warp staff to send key units to blocked-off objectives right past the guards, and sending units to out-of-the-way spots where you know in advance the enemy general will show up are some general examples.

    Wide Open Sandbox 
  • Terraria:
    • Copper tools can mine gold ore, which will make equipment (especially the pick) that becomes the first real improvement to your starting gear, making the other ores in-between entirely skippable.
    • With some skill, players can actually bypass the base mineral armor sets and simply kill the Eater of Worlds a couple of times to get the raw material to forge a set of Shadow Armor. It is also possible to do this with the Brain of Cthulhu and the Crimson Armor set.
    • In a Corruption world, players can also bypass mineral armor sets by slaughtering Eaters of Souls (which spawn frequently in Corruption) for the Ancient Shadow Armor they drop. The pieces have the same stats and are interchangeable with Shadow Armor crafted from Eater of Worlds-dropped material.
    • Another way to get decent armor and weapons for the early game is to go to a corruption (or crimson) biome, and use bombs to break two crimson hearts/shadow orbs, which can cause a meteorite to fall. This meteorite ore can be mined with bombs, allowing you to easily get armor with a fair amount of protection, along with an infinite - ammunition space gun and a Laser Sword. All of this can be done before the first boss, making everything up to the wall of flesh much easier.
    • With the addition of fishing we get the Reaver Shark, a rare fish found in the oceans, which can be used as a pickaxe, and can mine anything up to the first hardmode ore (either Cobalt or Palladium). So if you get lucky with your fishing early on you can just skip all of the normal mode pickaxe tiers entirely!
    • There are numerous methods available to enter the Lihzahrd Temple before defeating Plantera. They're typically fixed in a future patch, but some remain, such as hammering three platforms upside-down in front of the door and pressing down while walking towards it. Entering the Lihzahrd Temple early can get you access to advanced traps and unique furniture items, but the Golem boss still can't be summoned unless you defeat Plantera first. Do be warned, the traps and enemies can easily kill an unwary player, so think twice before attempting this,
    • While Duke Fishron was intended to be an end game boss just before the Lunatic Cultist, it can still be summoned as soon as you get to hardmode. As such, you can make it the first hardmode boss you face, and while extremely difficult to fight at that point, if you do manage to beat him, you can get some really powerful end game equipment before even fighting any of the mechanical bosses, which in turn makes the rest of the game a breeze up until the point you'd normally fight Fishron.

  • Normally in Attack from Mars, the player must knock down a retractible drop target bank, then shoot a saucer to destroy the Martian spaceship. During multiball, however, if you destroy a ship, get one ball trapped by the targets as they rise back into position, then hit the bank so the trapped ball goes into the saucer, you receive a Dirty Pool bonus and instantly get credit for destroying the next spaceship.
  • Not even Game Mods are safe from this trope. Examples:
    • "Protean Cybex," the sixteenth level of the Doom II total conversion HacX, requires you to push a series of buttons, eventually revealing a switch in the center which ends the level when pressed. Problem is, it's located right behind where the player starts, and because of how the engine handles switches, you can end the level right after it begins just by turning around and clicking at the air.
    • "Mind Swamp That WORKS LOL," highlighted in the NUMA new user guide as one example of a bad N map, seems to be ridiculously tough to finish... unless you exploit a bug that lets you activate the exit long before you ever get there.
  • In Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Elementary Dear Data", Data does this with the Sherlock Holmes simulations on the holodeck. As his android brain has committed the entire plots of all the Sherlock Holmes stories to memory down to the finest detail, Data manages to "solve" the mystery when the story has barely started, thereby subverting the whole point of the game. The simulation is reprogrammed to try and restore the sense of mystery to be worked out- first by randomizing the plot and, when this proves too easy, creating a foe who's a match for Data- the now-sapient Moriarty. Trouble ensues.
  • Any of the LEGO Adaptation Games that features a create-a-character option will have this to at least some degree, since abilities are not chosen willingly but given out depending on which parts you use to make your character allowing some abuse for a savvy player. Most notably is LEGO Star Wars, where giving a character a red lightsaber also gives him dark force powers, allowing you to interact with dark force bricks much earlier than intended. This was eventually used intentionally by the developers of LEGO Jurassic Park, where the "Attract Studs" enabling red brick can only be reached by making a small dinosaur (to enter the paddock) with a T-Rex's head (whose roar can smash the obstacle).
  • The Adventure Zone: The Dungeon Master references a long-sounding sequence in a castle that the party manages to skip by figuring out how to use an enchanted map and getting pointed straight to Wave Echo Cave. Unlike many instances of this trope, it is not advantageous, since it puts them in an area recommended for characters of level 4-5 at level 2.
  • In Ruby Quest, the players did this several times. The first time was sending a severed hand (intended to be used to open a fingerprint lock) up a pneumatic tube instead of using it where it was supposed to be, meaning that they had to wait a while before they could find the hand again. The second was climbing up a pipe to escape Ace, resulting in the DM, Weaver, halting the game for a while so he could draw up the room at the other end of the pipe, which he hadn't expected them to reach so soon. The third was smashing their way into a locked medicine chest with a crowbar, allowing them to get the Tranquilizer early and so knock out Stitches instead of killing him, which they would have had to have done to get the key to the medicine chest. This sequence breaking actually allowed them to get the good ending.
  • Darths & Droids is built around this. In this universe the Star Wars film don't exist and are being told through a tabletop role-playing game, so from the reader's point of view the films take place in largely the same way, with some characters portrayed differently and some story beats moved around. From the perspective of the Dungeon Master, it's a non-stop improv game where he's trying to adapt to the whims of his players.
  • One Piece: In order to reach Raftel, the Strawhats have to use a log pose compass that let's them travel from island to island until they reach it. The final island is not Raftel but rather a different island that has information on how to find it. The Strawhats happened to learn this and find one of the items needed to find Raftel shortly into the second half of their journey.
  • In Sword Art Online, 10,000 players are trapped in a virtual reality MMORPG, and they must beat the 100th floor boss to leave the game. After defeating the 75th floor boss, Kirito, the protagonist, demonstrates that Heathcliff, a guild leader, is actually Akihiko Kayaba, the inventor of the VR headset and the creator of the game. Kayaba intended to reveal himself as the 100th floor boss, but decides to have Kirito challenge him. Kirito wins.
  • The most fundamental "sequence" in Magic: The Gathering is the generation of mana. Each turn, you may play one basic land which generates one mana of its associated color when tapped. This generally limits the power of the cards you can get into play early on in the game. Certain cards other than lands sometimes allow for the generation of extra mana, but it is rarely a significant amount and they often have other drawbacks to balance them out. Many of the cards which make up Magic's banned list are cards which put a disproportionately high amount of mana into the game for a low cost. This includes the infamous Black Lotus, which brings 3 mana into play for zero cost (as well as it's numerous "watered down" clones like many of "Moxes" and Lion's Eye Diamond, which despite being weakened, were still unbalanced to the point of being broken). The extra mana allows you to play much more powerful cards much earlier than your opponent could reasonably counter.
  • In Myth-ion Improbable, Aahz and Skeeve are faced with a Magick treasure map designed as a puzzle. Rather than showing the correct route to the goal, it magickally alters itself to present multiple routes, most of which are deathtraps. Skeeve reasons it out like this: his own magick powers run on an internal battery that he recharges by drawing on outside sources — and the map qualifies. He drains the magick off of the map and, sure enough, all the alternate paths vanish and it shows a direct line to the treasure, skipping over half the quest.
  • In China Miéville's novel Un Lun Dun, Deeba decides to skip to the end of the Linked List Clue Methodology after suffering too many casualties at the first stop. The last item on the list was news from a war, which was intended to resolve a dispute between the quest goal's guardians. Deeba resolves the dispute diplomatically, short-circuiting the entire quest.
  • In Visual Novel Endless Summer, it's possible to guess Iris' name before finding the clue you need. Possible, but certainly not recommended if you actually want to live.
  • In the short-lived reality TV show Treasure Hunters where teams had to complete puzzles and travel across the globe to find a treasure, one puzzle clue told teams they had to "clean the streets of Paris" to find their next location. The teams were supposed to figure out from this clue that instead of using the mop and water they were given to clean the roads they were on, they had to clean the map of Paris they had gotten earlier to reveal a secret path on it. However, two teams cleaned the map well before they got the clue for it after noticing the map's odd texture and the host subsequently called to tell them they could just go straight to the map's shown destination, letting them bypass several puzzles other teams had to do.
  • In the fourth Alex Rider book, Eagle Strike, the Big Bad is Damian Cray, a celebrity whose latest venture is launching his own games console (in truth, the console is a cover for the vast amount of processing power he needs to put his Evil Plan into action). Alex plays one of the console's games, Feathered Serpent, early on in the book, and notes that the game is extremely realistic, particularly in its depictions of violence and injury. Later on, Alex discovers the reason behind that: Cray built a real-life version of the game and forced people to play it, invariably killing them. When Alex gets trapped in this version of the game, he remembers what he did in the console version and, in order to escape, deliberately does things he wasn't meant to be able to do in the game, such as removing his shoes for better grip on a floor covered in water, doubling back after a Point of No Return, and getting the bosses to leave him alone by faking his own death.

Alternative Title(s): Sequence Break


Example of: