Forced Tutorial

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You've mastered this game. All that remains is to achieve 100% Completion on Harder Than Hard difficulty.

So, you start up a new game, choose your difficulty, skip the opening cutscene because you've seen it a hundred times, and it's time to...

Play the tutorial.

Why are there forced tutorials in recent video games? Perhaps manuals do not exist (or game developers know gamers often don't read them), therefore, it is a good idea to force the player through a tutorial to teach them how to play. Or, perhaps the writer has crammed most of the exposition into the Justified Tutorial. Either way, Thou Must Do the Tutorial, for the 15th time.

Examples of Forced Tutorial include:

Video Games

Action Adventure

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Action Game

  • Spider-Man 3 has a forced tutorial with a narrator that actually insults the player's skill, regardless of the player's actual skill. The fact that the narrator is none other than Bruce Campbell softens this somewhat.
    • Actually, this is true with several Spidey games. There's a forced tutorial in Spider-Man 2 where Bruce orders you to jump off a bridge, constantly berates you until you actually do it, and then verbally abuses you for being dumb enough to jump off a building when told.
      • He actually is a little nicer if you jump off the building and web swing right away instead of waiting for him to teach you how to web swing
  • The first third of the first level of MadWorld is a tutorial wherein Jack is given basic killing instructions by Agent XIII. You have to play through this every time you play the level (even for challenges), and if you kill the mooks in a non-instructed way, XIII gets pissed and makes you redo it. Your score from the tutorial doesn't even carry into the level proper On the plus side, the level's challenges are all designed so that the tutorial doesn't ruin them, and while your score doesn't carry over, your kills do.
    • This all changes once you've beaten the game at least once, though; XIII doesn't instruct you anymore, and your score from the first area does transfer over to the next one. And if you're lucky the enemies will spawn indefinitely, meaning with patience and imagination you can rack up insane points before really starting the stage.
  • Most Dynasty Warriors games avert this and go for a trial-by-fire, for the better given the simplicity of the series. But Dynasty Warriors Online has a massive hand-holding tutorial that goes as far as giving a required twelve minute long mission for not just how to capture bases but every possible permutation of bases that can be captured. You'd think the objective "Defeat the Officer" popping up would be self-explanatory...
    • What makes this even better? If you do well enough on the first tutorial, you skip the rest. To clarify, the first tutorial teaches you things any veteran DW player would know (who will probably do well enough to skip the rest of the tutorial), while the rest teaches things exclusive to the online version. It's completely possible to complete the tutorial before you are taught flasking, an absolutely vital thing to know if you have plans on winning matches.

Driving Game

  • The first Driver began with an unskippable tutorial that had you doing driving tricks in parking lot. You couldn't start the game without proving you could do some nigh-impossible turns in a tight time limit with other cars as obstacles.
    • None of which are useful in the real game.
  • Burnout 3 and earlier all force you to complete a series of tutorials before you can get to your first race.
    • Atomica in Burnout Paradise will interrupt your driving every minute with a tutorial lecture. No, he will not Stop Helping You.

First-Person Shooter

  • The Call of Duty series plays with this concept. In Modern Warfare, the player must pass through a killhouse modeled after the first level. In Call of Duty 2, the player is a newly-drafted Russian Infantryman literally just off the truck. The tutorial consists of shooting plates and bottles in a makeshift shooting range, throwing potatoes into a destroyed building's windows for grenade practice ("Grenades are more valuable than you'll ever be!") and destroying a German armored car which has just entered the area.
    • The tutorial mission of Modern Warfare 2, though in-story it's justified: the first part is a shooting range, where you're showing the local militia how to aim and shoot properly. The second is an obstacle course, which you must go through because a general is hoping to recruit someone into his task force.


  • Plane Shift qualifies, but only on your first character with a given account. There's a limit of four characters per account, so if you want to have five or more characters, you have to do the tutorial again for another set.

Platform Game

  • Sonic Heroes has the tutorial level automatically inserted at the beginning of Team Rose's storyline.
    • Considering there was already an optional tutorial...
    • Worse case in the pseudo-sequel. Shadow the Hedgehog has no regular tutorial, but keeps telling you the game's controls up to and including the last level of the game.
  • Played with in Jak II. The first stage is your usual in-game tutorial (of the "escape from prison" variety), but it's integrated into the actual game in a way that you don't notice it... perhaps because you don't have to perform the actions he tells you, they're just told to you in the audio very conversationally, but you're totally free to just do the escape like he's not even talking.
  • De Blob does a lot of hand holding, at least early on. Example: could you guess that a big blue sign stating "30" would require 30 paint points and a blue blob to activate? Too bad, the game will tell you this before you get a chance to prove your brilliance.
  • Web game Steamshovel Harry is a Deconstruction of this trope. You've got 15 minutes to save the earth; guess how long the tutorial takes?

Puzzle Game

  • The tutorial pops up whenever you start a new game in Katamari Damacy. Which is annoying in the first place... until it gets to the text examples that you can't skip. Because gamers can't read good? Heck, that should be a trope...
    • In We Love Katamari, you have to do the tutorial level twice to find one of the cousins (and thus achieve One Hundred Percent Completion) - the tutorial ends with your character rolling up Ace and his katamari. To get the Last Lousy Point, you need to play again as Ace. Since he can't roll himself up to complete the tutorial, he'll roll up The Prince instead, which puts him on the list of people you've rolled up.
  • The first few levels of Portal are a tutorial. Each level teaches the player a basic concept of the game, which is explained by the computer AI. In later levels, the complexity increases, and the player is left to identify which maneuvers they will need to progress. All levels provide a number of subtle visual clues that hint at what the player is expected to do, such as putting checkerboard patterns where the player must land.
    • According to the commentary track, every level is an exercise in training the player.
  • Many of the Eggerland games start with a series of painfully easy levels introducing each gameplay element to the player. In the western-only Adventures of Lolo, these go on for OVER HALF THE GAME. Argh.

Role-Playing Game

  • Most Final Fantasy tutorials are skippable, either by avoiding them entirely, or by skipping them once they start.
    • The tutorial in Final Fantasy XII about the license system isn't skippable. (It is, however, thankfully short.)
    • Neither are the tutorials showcasing the characters' abilities and some battle maneuvers in Final Fantasy X.
    • As well as Final Fantasy X-2. Once you get the stolen garment grid back, the game requires you use it in the next battle in order to show you how to use it, even if said battle would be faster and easier if you didn't use it.
    • While tutorials are skippable in Final Fantasy VIII, several more tutorials were added that weren't present in the Japanese version.
    • Many tutorials in Final Fantasy VI are skippable, but the tutorial on Gau's Rage mechanic is not. It's not that long though, and it has some entertaining music at least.
    • The first ten chapters in Final Fantasy XIII are effectively one long tutorial where they introduce the game's mechanics bit by tiny bit.
  • Special note goes to Mega Man Battle Network, where half the time, the boy that saved the net many times now forgets how to kill Mettaurs.
  • The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion makes you do the tutorial for every character, but you can also avoid it just by saving at the very end of the tutorial and keeping that save. (The benefit of this is that the tutorial's end allows you to completely re-customize your character.)
    • The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall is nice enough to let you skip their tutorial, but you still have to fight your way out of Privateer's Hold. Ironically, the tutorial is broken anyway and you never get to see the last two or three tips.
    • Made really subtle in The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, where the best thing you have for a tutorial is being told to take an enchanted ring from a barrel and being told that there will be no more tips after leaving the office.
  • Fallout 3, like Oblivion, makes you do the tutorial for every character. Like Oblivion, it's a good thirty minute event—and unlike Oblivion, some decisions have long-term consequences, like killing the Overseer. If you have no problems with effectively making the same moral choices every time, you can save right before the end of the prologue in the same way as in Oblivion.
    • Fallout: New Vegas averts this. After character creation, you're pointed towards an NPC who will "teach you how to survive in the wasteland," i.e., run you through a tutorial quest. You can opt out and strike off into the Wasteland at any time - in fact the only sign of the starting area's tutorial-ness is a warning that will pop up when you leave town, asking you to confirm your character build.
  • .Hack//GU has two forced tutorials, because some NPCs refuse to take "I know this already" as an answer.
    • The second one seems more like a Lampshade on the forced tutorial, judging from Haseo's irritated reaction and commentary.
  • Knights of the Old Republic forces you to play the Endar Spire level, but a good chunk of the He Knows About Timed Hits dialogue is skippable. KotOR 2 allows you to skip the tutorial altogether.
    • Because of a bug, it's better to do the tutorial in KotOR 2, as you can obtain inventory items the developers didn't want you to have by finding them during the tutorial, then going back to the cockpit and choosing the "skip tutorial" option.
  • Interplay gives us two of the more loathed examples in Fallout 2 and Baldur's Gate games, The Temple of Trials and "Château Irenicus" (itself preceded by another Forced Tutorial, though short and loaded with No Fourth Wall humor) respectively. Both of them are completely unskippable and rather lengthy, but BG2‍'‍s at least serves as an innovative way of dishing out character exposition (and there's a pretty funny fan mod to bypass it), while F2‍'‍s is an exercise in mindbending unbelievability.
  • Golden Sun: Dark Dawn forces you to listen to incredibly slow paced tutorials on everything from psynergy usage to Djinn setting to switching party members. This is the third game in the series.
    • Even more annoying since a) The Lost Age let you skip the Djinn tutorials and both previous games more or less let you figure out shopping (yes, Dark Dawn has a shopping tutorial), equipment, and Psynergy on your own, and b) Dark Dawn sets up several situations that look like they'd be obvious "skip tutorial" options and then nags you for taking those options. What the hell, Camelot?!
    • Mildly justified in the case of switching party members mid-battle; a surprising number of The Lost Age veterans thought that was a new feature. It wasn't.

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  • Kingdom Hearts II has an especially aggravating example. The entire prologue - all five hours of it - is almost entirely unskipable tutorials and cutscenes. This may account for a portion of the fan hatred for the prologue character, Roxas. It's even the former Trope Namer for Longest Prologue Ever, now Prolonged Prologue.
  • Later installments of Geneforge and Avernum have slid into this as the tutorial got integrated into the storyline.
  • The Witcher: "Wait, Geralt! But Thou Must! drink the Thunderbolt potion!" Though this tutorial is well justified, the player is restricted from performing actions before they're called for in the tutorial, and sometimes no other action will be allowed.
    • The tutorial messages also annoyingly pop up in the short story side missions (as they are technically a new game) included with the Enhanced Edition.
  • Every Pokémon game except the second generation does this. Tend to be fairly short, but that's because they only explain the obvious bits.
  • Used to the point of ridiculousness in the DS version of Glory of Heracles. The game interrupts you constantly to tell you what Standard Status Effects are, even though any Japanese kid with even a passing knowledge of Dragon Quest should know how RPG mechanics work.
  • Dubloon suffers from this too. (Un)Fortunate enough to get out of the jail? Sorry, you are forced to check out that map, which is nearly useless anyway! (Un)Fortunate to head north of the First Town? You are forced to use that Shake Bomb.
  • While the tutorial levels in both Mass Effect games (Eden Prime and Lazarus Station respectively) are both unskippable (they're vital parts of the story, after all), the first game allows you to turn off the tutorial boxes through the menu, making it just a normal level. The second game does not. Best of all, not only do you have to deal with the annoying boxes during the tutorial, you have to deal with these friendly reminders for the rest of the game. You'd think that someone who's beaten the game several times over would know to take cover to regain health, but apparently not.
  • Wonderfully averted in Alter AILA on a New Game+. You're given the option to skip the entire opening mission (which introduces the characters and eases you into the combat system) and go right to the first decision point (where you pick your side and companions).
  • In Adventure Quest, the player is forced to do the opening quest which has a small battle and tells the location of important things. However, it is very short in comparision to other tutorials.
    • Warp Force, an expansion of sorts to Adventure Quest, has a more in-depth tutorial which teaches each of the mechanics used in battle and then puts you against a Dracolich. The openning quest also introduces the titular WarpForce who recruit your character.
  • Task Maker subverts this by giving an option to skip the Tutorial level. However, it may be useful to play the tutorial anyway, because doing so will result in gathering a much wider inventory than is given to players who skip it.

Simulation Game

  • Black and White has a particularly long one, made all the worse by the fact that the nature of the game (wanting to try out new and different creatures raised in new and different ways) means that the average player will want to restart multiple times. Can be avoided by saving immediately after finishing the tutorial, and was eventually fixed in a patch that allowed players to skip straight to the creature selection after playing the tutorial once.
    • They seemed to forget this lesson with Black And White 2 however; not only did the release version have a long, tedious and unskippable tutorial, the tutorial itself suffered from a Game Breaking Bug that made it totally impossible to start the game unless you had one of a few very specific types of mouse. The patch made it possible to skip the tutorial... at the cost of a 3,000 point penalty.
  • The first three missions in Trauma Center are "How to use the instruments" missions.
  • You have to complete the tutorial mission in Uplink in order to get enough of an Agent Rating to take on any other missions, although you don't actually have to step through the Tutorial program to do it. The password for the test machine never changes either, and it's the only machine in the game that doesn't have negative consequences for being traced. Meaning you can finish the tutorial in less than thirty seconds after starting the game, without buying any of the hacking software you'll eventually need.

Sports Game

  • Virtua Tennis 3 forces you to play a bunch of tutorial events before you can enter your first actual tennis match.
  • The three minute long unskippable video tutorial on installing and removing and maintaining the wii motion plus that plays before Wii Sports Resort. Very annoying especially as it plays even if the wii motion plus is already installed.

Stealth Based Game

  • The first level of the third Thief game is a tutorial for Xbox players who never played Dark Project or Metal Age on the PC, and it's a follow-the-blue-footsteps lesson on sneaking, manipulating the environment and so forth that Thief veterans have no choice but slog through because you can't turn off the tutorial; you have to do exactly what the level says (follow exactly this path, distract the guard exactly this way) or it will reset back to that part of the lesson to make sure you get it. Especially jarring since the first level of the first game was also a tutorial, but you can solve the challenges however you like (walk across carpet to reduce noise? Nah, running leap over the noisy floor works just as well in half the time!) and the Thief games are all about finding your own way past obstacles.
    • To make matters worse, the tutorial forces you to knock out a man, thereby denying a pure Pacifist Run, and a guard will always see you at the end, thereby denying a pure 100% unseen Self-Imposed Challenge.
  • The tutorial and opening cutscenes chew up the first hour of Assassin's Creed and no, you can't skip any of it.

Survival Horror

  • Eternal Darkness forces you to scroll through the tutorials, even if you've already reached New Game+.
  • Dead Space tutorials are little windows that pop up explaining something. You can't do anything else until you dismiss them. This is normally not a problem until the one about being in a vacuum pops up - every second spent reading is one less second you have before your air runs out!
    • Dead Space 2 is a little less annoying about this, using the 'learn or die' method for many concepts or using pop ups in quiet areas.

Third-Person Shooter

  • Eat Lead: The Return of Matt Hazard starts off with a forced tutorial level. Of course, the game being a loving parody of videogames, your character lampshades this ("Like I don't know how to shoot a gun."), and even pats the game designers on the back a little. ("I gotta admit, this moving-forward-into-cover thing is kinda cool.")

Turn-Based Strategy

  • The seventh Fire Emblem game forces the tutorial the first time down, but after you finish the game once you can skip it, or play the tutorial levels without the tutorial, thus allowing you to gain more EXP and make the rest of the game cake. Sure, Western players would need to learn how to play, as this was the first game to be released outside Japan... But what about Japanese players? Well, they hated the tutorial, though it could be skipped by linking to the previous game.
    • The sixth Fire Emblem features an optional tutorial.
    • Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones, Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn all feature skippabe tutorials but still force you through the levels that would have been tutorials. Notably, Radiant Dawn teahces you to recruit enemies by talking to them, even though you don't recruit any units that way except the guy in the tutorial! (Well, you can get some guys to change sides earlier this way, but you'd get them regardless so it's not requiered).
    • Exception: In Fire Emblem DS, only Normal Mode has a tutorial (the tutorial part being optional) with extra prologue chapters. In the Hard Modes, you start right in the original's first chapter, with all the basics in a menu command.
  • The first Advance Wars game only required one tutorial mission to be completed (the Fog of War tutorial, it was fairly new for Japanese players anyway), but Advance Wars 2 and Advance Wars DS force the tutorial.
    • Days of Ruin isn't too terrible, only taking a time-out to explain new units.
  • The Snowball Fight tutorial in Final Fantasy Tactics Advance. You can get through it faster by having everyone blast Mewt, but you can't actually skip it.
    • Obnoxious as hell. In a game with otherwise excellent replay value, the fact that it takes half an hour (on a handheld system!) from clicking "New Game" to actually being able to take your first real gameplay actions killed many a "I think I'm going to play this again!" startup run.
  • Front Mission 3 and 4 have short tutorials, with the player acting as the test pilot for the demonstration of a high-end military Wanzer in the former, and as a fresh pilot being introduced to a research operative group in the latter.

Visual Novels

  • You wouldn't think that you'd need one but Twilight will always tell you how to move and combine evidence in My Little Investigations.

Wide Open Sandbox

  • Grand Theft Auto Vice City pulled this off a little bit by combining it with That One Boss, soon-to-be getaway driver Hilary. His insanely difficult race is basically a training level for the eventual cop chase after a bank robbery. Why? He dies before he does any useful driving and forces the player to do all the fancy work.
    • And the race is much more difficult than the actual getaway. Just by virtue of reaching that stage in the game the player must have the skill to pull off the getaway.
  • GTA: San Andreas made you complete flight school to progress, despite you being able to fly perfectly fine previously, and despite you never needing to use the maneuvers that the school teaches you.
  • Grand Theft Auto IV spends a good deal of time teaching you the basics of driving, navigating with your GPS, clothes shopping, socializing, melee combat, etc. It's worked into the narrative well, but it's still a bunch of tutorials, and you still can't skip them.
  • Spore, a game built around replayability, takes time out periodically, especially in Space mode, to force-pause itself and explain minor facets of the engine that you could have probably figured out by context anyway. You can turn off a lot of the tutorials and hints from the menu, but others will show up no matter what you do (luckily, a lot of these come in the form of skippable cutscenes.) One tutorial that you have no way of skipping (other than simply ignoring it and missing out on the reward) is the Galactic Adventures tutorial mission.
    • The tutorial at the beginning of the space stage is an interesting case in that you're given the option to skip it, but it's actually to your advantage to do it anyway as the parts of the tutorial count as missions which put you further towards one of the badges.
  • Prototype's compulsory Memory In Death level. In subsequent new playthroughs, it's usually more fun to find other ways to complete the objectives as opposed to adhering to the action prompts as you would've done those actions to death previously in earlier games.
  • Saints Row the Third's "Takeover The City" level is a sudden tutorial on how to buy shops in Steelport, how to take out gang strongholds, and how to avoid the fallout of your rampage by hiding in said shop. Other than getting the shop in question practically for free, your reward is a mere 500 dollars. The whole mission seems like it should have come much sooner, especially considering the previous mission, among other things, had the player chase a Morning Star lieutenant halfway across the city via helicopter and rewarded him with a new safehouse and six thousand dollars.

Web Comics

A lot of games have a "cradle" town at the beginning of your GRAND ADVENTURE, where talking to the inhabitants helps bring your attention to potentially-useful things, like how to move your legs. Five minutes later, having been told everything you could possibly want to know, you can toddle away and move on with your life.
In Animal Crossing, you live in this town and can never escape.

Real Life

  • The November 2010 update for the Xbox360 dashboard includes a tutorial that might be useful for new owners of the console, but doesn't really tell existing owners anything that they won't know already. You can skip the tutorial if you want, but you're in for a nasty shock if you do that, because the console will lock you out of Xbox Live. The only way to restore access? Watch the full tutorial! Thankfully it isn't too long, but why on earth Microsoft thought existing users out to be forced to watch it is mind boggling.
  • People who start new jobs often have to go through training, no matter how much experience they have with the particular job.
  • Physicians trained in the Third World who immigrate to developed countries often find themselves having to go to medical school again.

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