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The one-sentence "definition" that should be in italics.

This pattern is a still a stub.




Using the pattern

Diegetic Aspects

Interface Aspects

Narration Aspects



Alarms, Maneuvering, Roleplaying, Left 4 Dead series, Space Alert, Time Limits, Randomness, Tension, Challenging Gameplay, Exaggerated Perception of Influence, Avatars, Units, Combos, Turn-Based Games, Characters, Experimenting, Enemies, Freedom of Choice, Late Arriving Players, Social Dilemmas, Quick Travel, Actions Have Diegetically Social Consequences, Enforced Agent Behavior, Factions, Extra-Game Consequences, Internal Rivalry, Loyalty, Power-Ups, Cutscenes, Parallel Lives, Single-Player Games, Ephemeral Goals, Capture, Altruistic Actions, Ephemeral Events, No-Ops, Delayed Reciprocity, Arithmetic Progression, Collaborative Actions, Geometric Progression, Resource Caps, Anonymous Actions, Safe Havens, Helplessness, Quests, Loot, Destructible Objects, Traps, Balancing Effects, Thematic Consistency, Strategic Knowledge, Predictable Consequences, Movement, Movement Limitations, Abilities, Privileged Abilities, Decreased Abilities, Ability Losses, New Abilities, Lives, Player Killing, Death Consequences, Spawning, Area Control, Combat, Damage, Hands, Puzzle Solving, Critical Hits, Quick Time Events, Stealth, Evade, Turnovers, Spectators, Resources, Critical Misses, Critical Failures, Scores, Winning by Ending Gameplay, Tiebreakers, Tied Results, Downtime, Attention Demanding Gameplay, Game Time Manipulation, Save-Load Cycles, Eliminate, Teams, Mutual Goals,

Can Instantiate


Can Modulate


Can Be Instantiated By

Game Termination Penalties, Life Penalties, Setback Penalties

Can Be Modulated By

Individual Penalties, Shared Penalties, Shared Resources, Rewards,

Possible Closure Effects


Potentially Conflicting With



An updated version of the pattern Penalties that was part of the original collection in the book Patterns in Game Design[1].


  1. Björk, S. & Holopainen, J. (2004) Patterns in Game Design. Charles River Media. ISBN1-58450-354-8.