Secondary Interface Screens

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

This pattern is a still a stub.


Computer-based Roleplaying Games make heavy use of Secondary Interface Screens. Examples include the Elder Scrolls series and the Fallout series. The Diablo series uses it for handling inventories and Pokémon Go uses it for both capturing and evolving Pokémons. The Battlefield series uses Secondary Interface Screens for leader functionality.

Using the pattern

Secondary Interface Screens are used to provide players access to information and actions that for one or another reason does not fit in the main interface. If there are many actions or much information there can of course be a need for many Secondary Interface Screens within one game.

Common examples of composite design elements that use their own Secondary Interface Screens include Character Sheets, Dialogues, and Inventories. The first of these allow players to handle Characters especially Character Development when Characteristics are changed or when Characters are given New or Improved Abilities due to Player-Planned Development. The last, Inventories, quite naturally modify how one can interact with Equipment but can be more specifically applied to Equipment Slots, Game Element Trading, Sockets, and Free Gift Inventories; some of these make game items into Transferable Items. Changing Difficulty Levels is often done through Secondary Interface Screens also, and can be done through being able to activate/deactivate Dynamic Difficulty Adjustment or access Handicap Systems.

Other design elements that may have their own Secondary Interface Screens are Action Programming, Gameplay Statistics, High Score Lists (including Global High Score Lists), Neighbors, Parties, Player Created Game Elements, Player Kicking, Purchasable Game Advantages, and Quick Travel. Parties in particular can provide access to actions regarding Companions, Non-Player Characters and Player-Created Characters.

Can Instantiate


Can Modulate

Clues, Game Worlds, Interruptibility, Mules, Naming, Private Game Spaces, Public Player Statistics, Save-Load Cycles, Sidequests, Spawning,

--- to add Quests

Diegetic Aspects

Due to often creating Non-Diegetic Features, Secondary Interface Screens often have issues supporting Diegetic Consistency. This is especially true when accessing these screens cause Game Pauses.

Interface Aspects

Secondary Interface Screens is an Interface Pattern.


Secondary Interface Screens typically create Non-Diegetic Features, if not for any other reason due to the actions they provide which are not diegetically presented. They often provide access to more information as well as cause Game Pauses, as because of this typically makes possible Strategic Planning in games.

When used to provide Quick Travel, Secondary Interface Screens can produce the Illusion of Open Space.


Can Instantiate

Character Sheets, Clues, Dialogues, Inventories, Non-Diegetic Features, Strategic Planning Transferable Items,

with Quick Travel

Illusion of Open Space

Can Modulate

Action Programming, Characters, Character Development, Characteristics, Clues, Companions, Difficulty Levels, Dynamic Difficulty Adjustment, Equipment, Equipment Slots, Free Gift Inventories, Gameplay Statistics, Game Element Trading, Game Worlds, Global High Score Lists, Handicap Systems, High Score Lists, Interruptibility, Improved Abilities, New Abilities, Mules, Naming, Neighbors, Non-Player Characters, Parties, Player-Created Characters, Player-Planned Development Player Created Game Elements, Player Kicking, Private Game Spaces, Public Player Statistics, Purchasable Game Advantages, Quick Travel Save-Load Cycles, Sidequests, Sockets, Spawning

Can Be Instantiated By


Can Be Modulated By


Possible Closure Effects


Potentially Conflicting With

Diegetic Consistency

Diegetic Consistency in games with Game Pauses


New pattern created in this wiki.