changing states and variables

Sep 16, 2014

Hi I'm having issues with altering states plus changing the variable on a slide

Firstly I want users to click on each character on the slide to view the thought bubble. So I have used a changed state for the through bubble.  When the user clicks on the next character the thought bubble disappears from the first character.  I can achieve this if the user clicks on the characters in order across the screen.  But if they view a character in a different order it doesnt work.

Secondly I want the user to view ALL the thought bubbles  before they can move to the next slide

I cant seem to deactivate the next button , see link:

patient complaints

Ive attached the source file of my attempt with changing states and variables

thanks for any help


9 Replies
Kevin Thorn

Hi Kate,

There's a way to achieve what your wanting to do with no triggers or variables to manage the character states. Yep, zero. One trigger to manage the navigation.

Leveraging object states are quite versatile and flexible...just gotta stretch them a bit!

Character setup:

  • Add character to slide.
  • Click Edit States
  • Add a Visited State (keep the same pose/expression as the Normal State).
  • Add a Selected State. Change the pose/expression here if needed.
  • Add a speech bubble *inside* the Selected state of that character and position it appropriately.
  • Click done editing the states.
  • Repeat the above steps for the other two characters.

Now, once all three characters are positioned where you want them on the slide, select ALL three > right-clcik > button sets > Button set 1. What we've just done is made the three characters behave like radio buttons in a multiple choice quiz.

Meaning, you can only select one at a time so the others will switch back to Normal when any of the other two are clicked (selected). And, since the speech bubble is *inside* their respective character's selected states, Storyline will automatically show it without the need of a trigger.

You might be saying to yourself, "Self, what about that Visited state I added to my characters?" This is where we will leverage that state to control navigation. Storyline has this little secret bucket it keeps track of certain things, and in this case it will know when an object as been visited.


Jump To [Next Slide] when the user clicks the Next button IF "character 1" AND "character 2" AND "character 3" are all equal to Visited.

Personally I'd add a layer with a small popup in the lower right corner just above the Next button that says something like, "Please click on all three characters before advancing."

To Show that layer, copy the above trigger and make a few small changes:

Show Layer [Layer 1] when the user clicks the Next button IF "character 1" OR "character 2" OR "character 3" are NOT equal to Visited.

Both triggers tied to the Next button.The difference in the two triggers are the AND/OR conditions and the "equal to" and "not equal to" operators.

That should work and it's a clean build with only one trigger (or two with the added layer). Let me know if this doesn't make sense.

Kate Jurd

Brilliant!! Thanks so much Kevin, I should have thought about using both selected and visited states!  

Also thanks for the tip about the layer with the trigger.

the only thing that isnt quite soon as i click on the last character, the slide advances very quickly to the next slide, without giving me time to view the last speech bubble..if that makes sense?

Kevin Thorn

Glad to help, Kate.

Hmm...check your triggers. From your description sounds like there's a Player Trigger that jumps to the next slide when the timeline ends. Either that or there's a Jump To trigger tied to that last character.

Storyline will only behave how it's told to (most of the time), so just "read" your trigger panel and study the triggers. One may just be a stowaway.

Kate Jurd

Kevin or other articulate gurus

I have a similar question but it involves data fields

If you have a question on a slide, and ask the user to provide their answer by typing in a data field, then the user clicks on a button ( which normal state is disabled) but they need to type their text response in the data field to change the state of the button to normal.  They then can click on the button to review/compare their answer on the next slide, against the 'expert' answer.

When I add a trigger to change the state to normal - the closest i could find is  the user 'presses a key', however I want them to type at least a word or a sentence .


Mike Enders

Hi Kate,

The trigger event you're looking for in this situation is "When control loses focus".  This is referring to when somebody clicks outside the text entry box.  The challenge though (at least that I'm seeing) is to get the person to click outside the box.  So, what I did in the attached file was simply add a  "submit" button which will cause the control to lose focus.  It serves a double purpose in that I added a trigger to evaluate whether the learner typed something.  If they didn't, a layer will show asking them to type something in.  

File is attached. I hope it helps!  Let us know if you have any questions!


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