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?

2 Answers 2


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. When getting specific, the Hitbox is the area that you can interact with on another entity, and the Hurtbox is the area on an entity that when interacted with (generally as part of combat), causes the entity to take damage.

As an example, Minecraft hitboxes 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

Technically, this is the same "area" that can also deal damage to you (when a player punches another player, or swings at them with a weapon), it is based on this same area. Depending on how you interact with another entity however, determines if you interact with the Hitbox, or the Hurtbox - anything the can receive damage from you with a left click will take damage if it hits, making it a Hurtbox. Otherwise, if you right click, it turns back into a Hitbox.

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

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

In addition to this, there are also some games that can have multiple versions of hitboxes on the same entity. For example, in games like CoD, the head has a different hitbox to the body, and limbs, as hitting an enemy in each specific area would do more or less damage (I.e. a "headshot" would do the most, body less, and the limbs would do the least amount of damage per "hit").

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    How is it the same thing in Minecraft? You don't take damage for walking into a pig. Swinging your sword doesn't check for collision with your character. Commented Oct 2, 2019 at 5:38

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
    Commented Aug 28, 2014 at 14:56
  • They are usually no longer "boxes" either, but follows the sprite. The detection is no longer just a box anyways, but the concept is still the same.
    – Nelson
    Commented Oct 14, 2019 at 2:09
  • @Nelson This depends on the game, but generally speaking, visuals and hit/hurtboxes do not directly correspond to the actual visuals, in my experience. Some games might be closer, but most have a separation between what shows up on screen and how damage works.
    – Unionhawk
    Commented Oct 14, 2019 at 2:20

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