There is the following sentence:

"Should this bar deplete your weapons will automatically shut off..." (c)

What can I see here is that the sentence starts with question form and continues like conditional (frankly speaking I don't know how to call it correctly). I have never faced such a construction before and therefore I really eager to understand it in more details.

I would be really grateful to you if you at least can give me the right direction to google!

1 Answer 1


You understand this correctly as a conditional. Subject-auxiliary inversion is an alternative to if for expressing the condition clause in a conditional construction:

If this bar should deplete... → Should this bar deplete...
If I were to go... → Were I to go...
If I had gone ... → Had I gone...

At one time this construction was fairly common with all past-form auxiliaries, and those uses may still be encountered in some literary contexts

Could I but see my native land again I would die happy.

But in present-day English it is usually found only with were, had and should; and even with those three it has an old-fashioned ring. As a learner you need to understand this construction, but it's not a very useful addition to your English toolkit, except possibly as a verbal trick to impress examiners.

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