# Hit Pause

In this article, we are going to look into Hit Pause, which is a fairly simple addition to any combat system, and will go a long way to making your attacks feel meatier and heavier. Even if you have never heard of the concept of hit pause, you have definitely seen it.

Below is an example I have pulled from Breath of the Wild. I reduced the playback speed of the video to help showcase the pause.

Zelda games have always had a more pronounced hit pause effect than other franchises (some would say TOO pronounced), so it makes for a really nice example to showcase the concept. This is a great example for a second reason, which is that adding hit pause to EVERY hit in your game is rarely required.

Often you can save this for when you get the killing blow, or maybe you just save a really strong version of it for the last hit on the last enemy in an entire encounter.

Point being, there's a lot you can do with it

You are also not required to limit this just to the player hitting an enemy. You can also use it when something else hits the player. Personally, I found the level of hit pause in Hollow Knight to be egregious, but it definitely makes for a great example of the concept.

# When to use

  • You wish to accentuate a hit, either on an enemy, or on the player
  • The weapon being used is heavier and stronger than other weapons, and you wish to showcase that.

# When not to use

  • On every single hit
  • For longer than a few frames, as it will make your game feel like it has a stutter.