DARA’S GUIDE: Script Symbols/Commands and What They're Used For

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When to use @, &, or #

at-sign @
@ is used to make a command happen.
When using @, the next command will not start until the current command has finished playing through.

@GIRL enters from left to screen center
@BOY enters from left to screen right

In the above sequence, the BOY character will not enter the scene until the GIRL character has finished entering.

ampersand &
& is used in place of @ when you want a command to happen simultaneously while other commands are happening
This means that the & command will happen at the same time as other commands.

&GIRL enters from left to screen center
@BOY enters from left to screen right

In the above sequence, BOY and GIRL with enter the scene at the same time.

hashtag/pound sign #
# is used for to add notes/comments to your script.
The script system will ignore this message as it is only meant for you to read. You can use comments to note how a certain scene should be directed, or to set reminders for your self.
They show up as grey text in the script.

#scene starts with BOY waking up to a text message
@BOY is lay_asleep_loop
@BOY is startled_suprised
#BOY looks at his phone. Make sure to add the phone overlay!

When to use “is”, “starts”, or “does it while”

is ” is to @ as “ starts ” is to &

Using "is"
The word “is” is basically used in the same way as @ but not exactly. “is” is 1 beat in the script (basically 1 second)

@BOY is laugh_giggle
@GIRL is faint

In the above sequence, BOY will laugh first then GIRL will do the faint animation.

Using "starts"
“starts” is also used basically in the same way & is used, except that it’s only used for animations. “starts” has no beats. So using “starts” will make the character do the animation at the same time the next command happens.

@BOY starts laugh_giggle
@GIRL is faint

In the above sequence, GIRL and BOY will both do their animations at the same time.

Using "does it while"
“does it while” is only used for when you want to make a character walk while doing a different animation other than the default walking animation. It should not be used on its own.
Here are some examples of how to use “does it while”:

@BOY walks to screen center and BOY does it while run_athletic
@GIRL walks to spot 1.28 220 55 in 3 and GIRL faces left and GIRL does it while walk_rear
@PERSON exits left and PERSON faces right and PERSON does it while dance_shake_loop

When to use AND & THEN

AND is used when you want to combine 2 or more commands on the same line, so those both commands will happen at the same time.
“and” can be all lower cased or all caps, it doesn’t matter.
Here are some examples:

@BOY is laugh_giggle and GIRL is faint
@cut to zone 2 AND zoom on 234 187 to 245% in 0 AND speechbubble reset
@GIRL walks to screen right and BOY walks to screen center

THEN is used when you want a command to happen immediately right after the previous command. Just like the “and” command, THEN goes on the same line as the previous command. It can be used for background characters when using the & sign. It’s also used for overlays when you want to loop the overlay.
Here are some examples:

&BOY walks to spot 0.895 135 95 in 0.5 THEN BOY faces right and BOY starts idle_happy_loop
&overlay BOOK shifts to 150 234 in zone 1 in 3 THEN overlay BOOK shifts to 0 234 in zone 1 in 3 loop INFINITE times
&BG_CHARACTER is laugh_giggle THEN BG_CHARACTER starts idle_wounded

Oof. That’s too much to remember


That’s the point of the guide though. Someone else has remembered it for you and now you can bookmark it so you can look at it when you don’t remember :wink:


This was needed! :smiley:



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Bump :sunny:

1 Like

Bump :black_heart:

Thank you so much for this!


Bump :smile:


Also, I was looking through the old Forums on a website and found your “A Guide to Over the Shoulder Shots” thread so that was cool :smile:

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This is great! I didn’t know all this and been using these things incorrectly in the way of “is” “starts” and “does it while”

This is so helpful. :sunglasses:

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Bump :earth_americas:

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@Dara.Amarie or anyone else, is there a difference between

&BOY starts/is laugh_giggle
@GIRL starts/is faint


@BOY starts/is laugh_giggle AND @GIRL starts/is faint


@BOY starts laugh_giggle
@GIRL is faint

I’ve just created my first story, and until now I thought & and AND was the exact same thing :sweat_smile:

All three work exactly the same

Okay, thank you so much for answering

For me it doesn’t work, it says they are not avalible

What exactly do you mean by this?

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Well, it comes up with this and I don’t know how to fix it