If you’ve lived under a rock through 2015 you may not have heard of Undertale. It’s a videogame that basically turns the traditional concept of gaming on its head. When the general public things of videogames, chances are things like Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto and other expensive, violent games come to mind. There is so much more out there, but they don’t have the same advertising dollars that games produced by big companies do.
Undertale creates a very unique situation in gaming. You have the option of three paths; pacifist, neutral and genocide. The game is designed so that if you kill a character you have to actually set out to do so. You must actively murder them and they are all fully actualized characters, not just a horde of grunts you pick off with a spray of bullets. The neutral path becomes your reality if you kill even a single character and each route drastically changes your experience within the game. The pacifist is the ideal route, because you get to forge relationships with the characters and eventually fight the monster at the end. When you choose the genocide route, YOU are the monster at the end that even the villain cowers before. There is no escaping your choices either because the game remembers past playthroughs. If you go through and slaughter the characters in the genocide route the first time through, you will never be able to experience the pacifist route. Likewise if you do pacifist first and then go through the genocide route, they behave as though they retain memories of you being their friend, which makes it all the more difficult.
Undertale has sold well over a million copies and it hasn’t even been out for a full year yet. It is quite literally keeping pace with games in the top 10 list of professional big company game sales per year and that is without the advertising dollars to propel it. Undertale exploded via word of mouth and the unique game play, coupled with the fact that it was community funded, shows the shifting future of gaming. People are funding the games they want to play and they want games where they don’t have to slaughter the masses to succeed, they want interactive environments where you bond with the characters.
I love that this is the way gaming is moving, away from violence and into
Check it out for yourself here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNV2TOF2PC0
I also want to include this video by MatPat where he talks about why he gave a copy of Undertale to the Pope. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8St9oOnkGU
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