Hot Spots - I can click anywhere and incorrect answer

Jan 16, 2014

I am building several hot spot quizzes in Storyline. I've inserted one Correct hotspot and one Incorrect hotspot. However, when I'm testing it I can click ANYWHERE on the page and I get the incorrect feedback response.

I'm worried employees will click the screen while reading the scenario and get a wrong answer erroneously.

I have it set currently so a mouse click submits the quiz question. I thought this woud only apply if the user clicked in a per-established hot spot. Is there any way to configure it like that?



15 Replies
Julia Koller

Hi Laura,

I played around with it a little, and it seems that is the default behavior for Hot Spot quizzes. One option may be to switch from a single click to a double-click. I think the user would be less likely to double-click by accident. 

Another option would be to fiddle with your feedback layers:

  • Give the student "unlimited" attempts
  • Provide Feedback "by choice"
  • Edit the Incorrect Feedback layer or Feedback Master so that it doesn't show up on the screen (Drag it off the slide in the Feedback Master)
  • Create a new Feedback Master that you can use for individual Hotspot feedback. 

I'm just kind of throwing the idea out there. I don't know if it would work with your particular project. This is a bit of tricky problem, and I agree, the default behavior is a bit confusing for the student.

Pedro Fernandez

Hello Laura,

You may also want to consider switching the type of question to free form question (multiple choice or multiple answer) and use clear buttons.

Here is an example:

  • create a free form multiple choice question
  • place a screen shot on the slide
  • create several shapes and place them on severs different areas
  • make them all clear (no fill color and no border)
  • Then edit the question and set up my correct answer or answers along with my distractors.

Hope that helps!

Laura Rogers

Thanks Julia and Pedro for the ideas. The default behavior does seem strange!

I tried the unlimited idea, Julia, and while it solves my immediate issue, it means that for answers that the person submits incorrectly, they get another chance. I'd like to avoid that.

So I may end up recreating a hotspot and using variables to score the quiz, although that's a lot of leg work. Shoot!

Thanks again,


Pedro Fernandez


You can also get creative with the pick one and pick many free form quizzes.  You can set up many different distractors if a hotspot quiz isn't working out for you using clear objects or clear buttons.

You can really fancy (if you choose) by coupling variables to a series of clickable objects or buttons (visible or invisible) to enforce a sequence!

Russell Corrie

I know this was posted quite a while ago; however, I just came across it as I was having the same problem.  I wanted to create a hotspot question in Storyline but unfortunately it allowed the user to click anywhere on the screen - and counted that against them in the number of attempts submitted.

I created a new hotspot over the areas on the screen that I did not want included in the hotspot submission.  When the user clicked that hotspot I triggered a layer to appear with a basic pop up that said, "Please click the buttons on the right."  Obviously you would customize the pop up to direct the user to wherever it is you need to direct them.  Then, after the pop up appeared and the user clicked to close that layer, they would proceed to the actual hotspot quiz question.

I hope this all makes sense and helps any future developers having the same problem.

Dave McKisick

A bit late to the table here, but I too wrestled with this bad default behavior that is built into storyline for hotspot questions, even after all these years.

Russell's suggestion above does work, but the problem is then the fact that storyline counts each click as an attempted answer, therefor it will count it as an incorrect attempt as before.

The solution I have found is to implement the large hotspot covering the whole slide, but place it just underneath the other hotspots on the timeline, and add a trigger to the base slide to show the custom layer created to tell users that they must click an answer. This way, if a user clicks outside of an answer hotspot, they would then click the big one which then displays the custom layer telling users that they must click an answer to proceed.

To prevent the screwy default behavior of storyline counting a click outside of an answer hotspot, you then have to implement a number variable on the Try Again layer set to add 1 each time, and then another trigger to show the Incorrect layer when the count has reached the limit you set for the question retries. In addition to this, you must also set a trigger on the custom layer set to Jump to Slide - This Slide, and oh, you also have to set the base slide to "Reset to Initial State".

Oh, one more thing. You may just have to set the correct hotspot to show the correct layer anyway, because, yeah..

Complex and time consuming, how well I know, but its what has worked for me to get the behavior out of storyline hotspot questions that I think most users would expect.

Or, you can just do a Convert to Freeform, Pick One, or Pick Many, which works very well and is what I went with after wrestling Storyline for a while.

Hotspot convert to freeform should be removed or its behavior fixed.

Rob Stevens

As another option to this. Here is how I got around it.

  1. Create the question slide as a hotspot slide.
  2. Add the necessary hotspots and select the correct on in the form view.
  3. Add an extra blank slide.
  4. On the new blank slide add a trigger that jumps to the question slide when timeline starts on this slide.
  5. Add a hotspot that covers the entire slide and be all other hotspots are on top of it.
  6. Add a layer with a text box that instructs the learner to select a "highlighted" area or make an appropriate selection, etc.
  7. Add a button/object (like a close/X button) with a trigger on the new layer that will jump to the blank slide.
  8. On the base layer of the question slide set the Revisit Option to "Reset to Initial State".
  9. Finally, be sure to modify the triggers for the Next/Continue buttons on the Incorrect and Correct layers to navigate to the appropriate slide (the default is next slide which might be the blank slide).

So now, if the user clicks anywhere that is not supposed to be a hotspot option (by clicking on the large all slide hotspot), it will show the new layer. Once the learner clicks on the close button on that layer, it will jump to the blank slide which will jump right back to the question slide and reset it. The one caveat is this resets the slide each time so if the want the user to have a specific number of tries beyond one, this option doesn't allow for that.

Rick Barrett

Since this issue hasn't been addressed yet, I'm wondering if it was implemented intentionally. May I ask what the purpose is of being able to create incorrect hotspots when no matter where the leaner clicks outside of the correct hotspot, it is automatically marked incorrect? Is it simply for more visibility into where the learner clicked when pulling SCORM data?

Jose Tansengco

Hi Rick,

Happy to help!

Adding incorrect hotspots can add more versatility to the design of a Hotspot question slide. In the attached sample project file, you'll see that I incorporated an alert that will appear when a learner does not click on either the correct or incorrect hotspot. This setup means that I can have three scenarios occur when a learner performs a click action: 

  • Display the correct layer if they manage to click on the correct hotspot
  • Display the incorrect layer for clicking on the incorrect hotspot
  • Display the invalid layer for any action that does not include clicking on the correct and incorrect layer

You can think of the incorrect hotspot as more of an optional element rather than a requirement that needs to be added to a hotspot question slide, and its main purpose is to give authors more control over what gets displayed on screen. 

Walt Hamilton

Additionally, in the old days, whenever the learner hovered over a hotspot, the cursor changed to a hand. That made it pretty easy for them to choose the right spot to click. Adding additional incorrect spots makes the hand cursor show up in various places, and not just the correct answer. That has been changed somewhat now, in that you have the option to set the cursor not to change. I prefer to cover the entire area with one big incorrect spot, and place the correct spot above that. That way, the cursor is always a hand.