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I've heard of hitboxes, then I heard of hurtboxes. They seem most relevant to fighting games. What do each of them mean and how do they differ?

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In most games Hitboxes and Hurtboxes are the same thing. They both refer to the area on the entity in which you (or more specifically, your own hitbox/hurtbox) can come into contact with for selection (talk to, or to interact with), or dealing damage.

As an example, Minecraft hitboxes (or hurtboxes, as preferred) are indicated by the white wire-frames surrounding the mobs, and items. (The hitbox representation for the player is glitched in this image - caused by the 3rd person camera offset):

enter image description here

As you can see: interacting/swinging at the pig's head will yield nothing, as it is not within the bounds of the hitbox/hurtbox.

However, in other games, mainly fighting games, like Street Fighter or Tekken, they are different. The hitbox is the area that will hit the opponent (red area), while the hurtbox is the area that you can take damage from an enemy attack during your attack (green box):

enter image description here

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Hitbox is the area of an attack that hits an opponent. Hurtbox is the area that can be hit by an opponent. It might be the same in minecraft, but in games like Street Fighter it is really different, and you must know the difference to get to higher levels. – Shunwoo Aug 28 '14 at 6:56
the player hitbox glitch seems to mistakenly account for the camera offset – ratchet freak Aug 28 '14 at 7:57
@ratchetfreak well there you go. You learn new things everyday :) – Ben Aug 28 '14 at 8:02
also it might be worth mentioning that there could be multiple types of hitbox on the same object. e.g. one doing little damage around the body and one doing much damage around the head, for the "headshot effect" – nonchip Aug 28 '14 at 22:39
@NamikazeSheena There are also different hurtboxes in shooters, such as for your Head and your Foot. These have different damage multipliers and thus will take different damage. – RFKomos Mar 16 at 14:28

In fighting games, in particular, a hitbox is the area of the screen that will do damage if it touches an enemy hurtbox. A hurtbox is the area of the screen where a character is vulnerable to attack.

Illustration of hitbox and hurtbox

In this image, the blue box is the hurtbox, while the red is the hitbox.

In other genres, hitbox is often used to refer to both the area of an attack, and the outline of a character used in hit detection.

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I think in modern games, there can be multiple hit and hurt boxes, all with different damage calculations. Shooters definitely have multiple hit boxes for headshots and stuff, and knowing the details of that hit box is even crucially important for playing competitively – Cruncher Aug 28 '14 at 14:56

A hit box is an area that you can hit stuff with: for example in minecraft, villagers hit boxes are not on the very top of their head. This means if you hit them there they will not take damage or knocked back but if you hit inside the box it will hurt him and kill him.

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That is just a copy and paste of the other answers – PythonMaster Mar 3 '15 at 0:48

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