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Video Game: Eversion
Enjoy the peaceful look while it lasts...

A freeware puzzle platformer made by our own Zaratustra as an entry to the Commonplace Book competition. Our hero, Zee Tee, is a flower with the power to reshape reality itself, at certain points. This becomes handy in his quest, as the Princess of the Flower Kingdom, Nehema, has been kidnapped by the Ghulibas from the North, and Zee Tee must set out across a colorful world to rescue the fair maiden from her peril.

Not to be confused with aversion, subversion, or any of the other ways to play with a trope.

Tropes that apply to Eversion (unmarked spoilers below!)

  • Advancing Wall of Doom: One pitch black one appears in the third level, and the sixth level has another one... made of blood, and shoots out those damned hands of doom.
  • All There in the Manual: According to Word of God, the main character's name is Zee Tee, an asterisk. The Flower Princess's name is Nehema.
    • Now actually in the manual, as seen on the Steam page. Also, the name of the enemies - Ghulibas (probably a portmanteau of "ghul" (Arabic for ghoul) and "goombas"?)
  • All There Is to Know About "The Crying Game": The fact that there even is a twist to this game, let alone what the twist is has reached this point for a lot of people.
  • And I Must Scream: X-4 in general, really, since all enemies are alive but cannot move. The Steam exclusive ending has X-4 affect Nehema and Zee Tee as well, and wait for you to press escape.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Pressing the evert button in the Steam release causes nearby Eversion points to visibly pulse.
  • And Then John Was a Zombie: One interpretation of the good ending.
  • Anti-Poop Socking : "STOP." "GIVE UP."
    • Only because the player doesn't have time to get the sock.
    • Inverted once you unlock the timed run feature: "FORWARD!" "ON YOUR MARKS!" "READY! TO RACE!"
  • Auto-Scrolling Level: levels 3-4 and 6-7 in old versions. Later versions no longer require waiting for the platforms to scroll in view, but cause the Advancing Wall of Doom to behave like a Rubber Band.
  • Backtracking: If you want all the gems on the seventh level, you'll need to do this.
  • Badass Adorable: Zee Tee, a cute flower with a Goomba Stomp and reality warping powers!
  • Beast and Beauty: The first ending inverts this, with the Princess as the Beast. The second and third endings avoid this trope entirely, because now you both are horrifying monsters!
  • Bleak Level: The last level.
  • Bonsai Forest: For some reason, trees in Eversion are as short as flowers.
  • Bonus Dungeon: After getting all the gems, a bonus Level 8 opens up. There are no gems, and it's harder than the rest of the game, but beating it unlocks the Happy Ending.
  • Bottomless Pits/Super Drowning Skills: All pits are large pools of water. And well, it's a platformer, touch the water and you die. But you do have infinite lives. In X-8, it's blood, but it might be lava.
  • Brutal Bonus Level: Only available if you get all the gems and also introduces the final eversion. In earlier versions, it starts warping randomly between them all. Version 1.7 replaces it with a maze-like level.
  • Bubbly Clouds: After your first eversion, those clouds are nifty platforms!
  • Central Theme: The author based this game upon an idea from HP Lovecraft's Commonplace Book: "sounds - possibly musical - heard in the night from other worlds or realms of being."
  • Cephalothorax: The Ghulibas, and Zee Tee.
  • Check Point: In the middle of most of the levels.
  • Checkpoint Starvation: In world 6, unlike most of the others, the check point is between two-thirds and three-fourths of the way through the level, and it can be a pain to reach. It's right before the hardest part of the level, which helps, but you're going to be seeing the beginning of that level a LOT.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The background subtly changes colors when you're at an eversion point.
  • Completely Missing the Point: In the Crispy Gamer review of this game, the reviewer says about the game's recommendation to play alone at night "There certainly were not any special "alone at night" effects, nor any creative use of the system clock."
  • Content Warnings: The above quote, displayed when you start up the game. You're thinking that since this is a cutesy platformer at first, that it's just a joke. It's not.
  • Crapsaccharine World: The entire game world is falling into decay and ruin, occasionally getting eaten by giant walls of nothing before turning malevolent and irredeemably evil. The bad ending is when you get eaten by the princess, who's already been turned into a monster; the good ending is where you turn into one of the nightmarish creatures as well... but at least you get the girl!
    • Another interpretation is that you are a monster all along, and that you're working your way back from a horrible world to one that, for you, is good and right.
    • Given how evert points operate and the ending, a more natural interpretation may be that the world is a single entity with multiple faces, and possibly that World 8 is the true face. This would make World 1 a fake, or a Crapsaccharine World.
  • Cyclops: The Ghulibas' eyes start to cross in X-3 and are fused into a single eye from X-4 to X-8.
  • Dark Reprise: Does the music for X-6 seem familiar? It's a creepy, distorted version of X-2's theme.
  • Dark World: The entire point of the game is to progress between various stages of Dark Worlds.
  • Did You Just Romance Cthulhu?: Justified in the "good" ending; Princess Nehema has already been revealed to be an Eldritch Abomination in the bad ending, but in the good ending, it turns out that Zee Tee is one too.
  • Dramatic Disappearing Display: Your score goes away in X-7, then everything but the gem counter in 7-8, and the whole thing in world 8. In time attack mode, however, the timer is always displayed during gameplay.
  • Dual-World Gameplay: Practically all of the gameplay is this to considerable success. There are 5 to 8 extra layers depending on version, but per level, you'll only be using 2 or 3 of them. At different layers, different objects may be obstacles or even enemies. In the lower levels, clouds can be platforms. In the lowest levels, bushes are obstacles, but go higher and they become withered and dead. The flowers are just background art at first, gradually becoming sickly and wilted as the levels progress. However, at the highest levels, they turn into thorny, spikey death traps. Each of these has an effect on the flow and timing of the player's jumps adjusted for the different levels. Enemies are deadly to different degrees with different ones optimised for different levels.
  • Dummied Out: In normal gameplay, you will never see the X-8 gems since you'd have every gem before you can even see X-8. At least, before 1.7.3 introduced Time Attack Mode, which have the gems serving to reduce time. But prior to that they do exist, probably so going to X-8 with gems around wouldn't kill the game in earlier versions.
    • In addition, hacking the game reveals levels X-9 and X-0. 9 appears to be a Minus World (all the monsters look like you, and the level properties are whatever they were in the previous layer you were in). 0 was the world used in the map editor, with white tiles. All shrubs are replaced with the word and question mark "Goal?", which triggered the "bad" ending.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: The first ending by completing world 7 is a bad ending. To get the better one, collect all gems and complete the bonus stage.
  • Easter Egg: In the newest version (as well as the HD), you get a secret ending if you end Level 7 on X-4 with all the gems. There's also a bonus screen for getting 100% completion.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Nehema turns out to be one. In the good ending, so do you.
  • Eldritch Location: As you continue everting, the world becomes more and more like this, peaking in X-8.
  • Endless Corridor: World 8 in version 1.7.3 onwards. If you don't find the evert point within two sections, then then you'll have to go through them again until you end the section after everting to a lower dimension.
  • Everything's Better with Princesses: It gets even better(?) if you get the good ending!
  • Eye Scream: The first box in level 4-1.
  • Excuse Plot: The plot described in the readme is as follows: princess is kidnapped. you must save princess.
  • Faceless Eye: The normal enemies in X-4.
    • And gem blocks in the world X-8.
    • And those stone enemies in world X-7.
  • Fake Difficulty: The demonic hands that emerge from World 6's Advancing Wall of Doom are more or less fixed in when they will emerge, but not where, meaning even the most skilled player can get killed by a hand that traps them between itself and another enemy or a hole, or even the wall, and there's nothing they can do about it.
  • Fission Mailed: In X-6 to X-8, dying will sometimes replace the "READY!" screen with a fake Game Over.
  • Floating Platforms
  • Follow the Money: In the first stage already, you can see some gems just out of reach above the clouds. They're hinting that you have a special ability which helps you to reach these gems.
  • Four Is Death: World 4, the Wham Level.
    • Also, in X-4, the goomba-like monsters stay still, as if they are dead.
    • X-4 is kind of a dead world. Everything's a dull shade of grayish-green, the plants are curled over, the water is poisoned and lifeless, the boxes have flat expressions...
  • Gainax Ending
  • Game Over: Averted in regular gameplay since you have unlimited lives, but after you reach the princess, the game is nice enough to close itself.
  • Genre-Busting: It's a platformer, puzzle, and horror game, all at once.
  • Giant Eye of Doom: The endings. The "sun" in X-4 also has a striking resemblance to one.
  • Giant Hands of Doom: The hands.
  • Ghibli Hills: Look at the green grass and blue skies shown in the page image! Isn't it a beautiful place? The HD version also puts nice hills in the background! Oh my god, what just happened to this place...?
  • The Goomba/Waddling Head: Your enemies are definitely like this, the first and second types obvious Captain Ersatzes of actual Goombas.
  • Goomba Stomp: Your only method of defeating your enemies.
  • Goomba Springboard: Needed to reach some platforms.
  • Gotta Catch 'Em All: Get the 240 gems and beat Level 8 for 100% Completion!
  • Goth Spirals: The bright purple flowers from World 1 gradually wilt into gray stalks that become spirals in World 5. As if that weren't enough, they acquire Spikes Of Doom from World 6 onward. In HD version, more can be seen in the background during later worlds. And let's not forget what happens to the face blocks in World 7...
  • Grotesque Cute: That adorable little flower can make his enemies (or himself, if he's not careful!) explode into globs of blood!
  • Guide Dang It: Most players who play the new version of the World 8 take the hardest path to get from world X-6 to lower instead of everting from X-6 to X-5 from the easier section.
    • Getting those last five gems in level 6 (or even getting to the end of the level) is frustratingly difficult, to say the least until you find the hidden eversion point in the maze.
    • Level 7 and those last few gems... and just when you think you've got the blocks destroyed and the gems popped out, if you should ever die in between grabbing the gems, YOU HAVE TO DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN. AARGH. Cue the head-smashing.
    • Partly averted, as most Guide Dang It moments are shortly after automatic saves and you have infinite lives to try everything. In the first example given, you can get trapped within the easier section, forcing you to search for the evert point within a small area.
  • Heartbeat Soundtrack: X-7. X-8 features accelerating heartbeats. X-5 also has a very slight heartbeat.
  • Hidden in Plain Sight: The after-game logo is hidden behind the pre-game logo, and vice versa.
  • High-Pressure Blood: Everyone in levels X-6 and beyond.
  • Hope Spot:
    • World 7. As you progress through the level, you start everting backwards and eventually end up back at the bright, happy 7-1. But if you haven't collected all the gems...
    • Similarly, the same thing happens in World 8 as of version 1.7.3. Complete with an end of level stinger before the ending.
  • Interface Screw: The later parts of worlds X-6 and X-7 are plagued by creepy glitches, messages, and other oddities in your UI. For example, your score starts turning into gibberish — then vanishes outright; instead of "READY!" it starts saying things like "STOP," "GIVE UP," a fake Game Over, etc etc. In the endings, the game closes itself.
  • Invincible Minor Minion: In version 1.73, rock monsters in X-7 and X-8. And normal enemies in X-8 respawn.
  • It's a Wonderful Failure: Get the Game Over sequence, and your character will be forced to sit helplessly as Nehema eats him.
  • Layered World: In fact, there are 8 layers. Three where things are relatively friendly, midpoint where things are indifferent, and four worlds of evil.
  • Let's Play: By DeceasedCrab. It's also been LPed blind by a fine fellow from the Let's Play Forum. It's actually one of the most let's played freeware games of 2009.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: In levels X-6, X-7, and X-8, get used to showers of blood every time you kill an enemy, or die. In version 1.73, enemies in world X-8 emit black smoke before resurrecting again though.
  • The Maze: Version 1.73 replaces the final level with sections which loop in pairs if player doesn't evert and end the section with another eversion.
  • Meaningful Name: Nehema, the Princess, is another name for Naahma, a powerful demoness in the Kabbalah.
  • Mind Screw: The endings are, to say the least, ambiguous.
  • Minimalism: At least, in the non-HD version. Maybe even then: the color palette hasn't changed much, the graphics are just larger and more detailed.
  • Minus World: Ten of them, but they are only reachable by hacking the game.
  • Mood Whiplash: Oh, so much.
  • Mordor: Levels X-7 and X-8.
  • Multiple Endings: There are three so far:
    • The Bad Ending at X-7 if you don't have all the gems, where Zee Tee fails to rescue Nehema... and finds himself in need of rescuing himself.
    • When you collect all of the gems and beat X-8, you get the Good Ending where Zee Tee and Nehema live Happily(?) Ever After.
    • The HD version has an extra special ending where Zee Tee and Nehema are warped to X-4 and frozen solid.
  • Musical Spoiler: Before you evert, you'll hear what you're everting into. Every time you evert to a higher layer, the music gets less and less cheerful. First it mellows out. Then it becomes dramatic. Then it becomes weird. Then it becomes oppressive. Then you hear the mellow music as if played on a broken record player. Then all you hear is a beating heart. And after that, cue the Psycho Strings...
  • Noob Bridge: Many people get stuck in world 2 and fully learn how the mechanics work only when they reach world 3-4, especially in the non-HD version. Eversion points are easy to miss if you don't know what to look for, and people often ignore the eversion point in 1-1 when they walk over it.
  • Not Quite Back to Normal: The second version of the last level has Zee Tee travelling from Layer 8 to Layer 1. When you reach the end of the level, a red hand comes out of the floor. Although unlikely to hit you, it shows that the world has been distorted beyond repair.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: World X-7 replaces the music with a quiet Heartbeat Soundtrack.
    • One of the randomly selected "READY!" screens in World X-6 to X-8 is a completely blank screen.
    • Additionally, after you have seen the READY!... TO DIE!, the normal "READY!" may feel like this.
  • One-Hit-Point Wonder: You're an asterisk, so this is kind of a given. Don't worry though, you have infinite lives.
  • 100% Completion: You can get a new title screen for doing this.
  • Overdrawn at the Blood Bank: Levels X-6 and beyond. Even assuming your little flower-guy has blood to begin with, there's no way his little body could hold that much.
  • Playing The Player: You probably thought it was a nice, happy platformer... until your first few eversions.
  • The Points Mean Nothing: The points really don't matter and when you everse to higher levels, the score counter goes madů
  • Prepare to Die: In Worlds X-6, X-7, and X-8, sometimes you'll get the "READY!" prompt, with "TO DIE" appearing below it just before the level starts. It works on X-5 as well, but very rarely.
  • Reality Warper: Besides jumping, this appears to be what your eponymous other power does.
  • Retraux
  • Save Point: The game will save your game after beating every level, as well as helpfully providing a check-point in the middle of the levels.
  • Save the Princess: As stated in the readme.
  • Scenery Gorn: In the High Definition version, the Ghibli Hills in the background grow decayed. X-2 makes everything look artificial and X-3 makes it look like it's falling apart. X-4 just shows a flat, completely stagnant ocean. The hills grow CLAWED HANDS and MOUTHS in X-6 and X-7. And then we have LAYERS and LAYERS of TENTACLES in X-8.
  • Schizophrenic Difficulty: World 4, 6, and 8 are harder than 5 and 7.
  • Schmuck Bait: To those who didn't have this game spoiled for them: admit it, you were wondering why the cutesy-looking platformer game was marked as "not for children or those of a nervous disposition". The fact that it starts with a quote from Lovecraft should have clued you in.
  • Scoring Points: They don't actually do anything, but watch what happens to the score meter when you go to X-6.
  • Shout-Out: World 1's layout bears a strong resemblance to World 1-1 from the original Super Mario Bros. for the NES.
  • Sound-Coded for Your Convenience: You can hear the everted world's music at the eversion point.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: As you progress though levels, the end of world jingle slowly becomes a bit... unfitting, culminating at the end of world 7.
  • Speedrun: After completing the game, the game goes into a "time attack" mode where you try to beat worlds as fast as you can.
  • Spelling Bonus: In the Steam version.
  • Spikes Of Doom: The thorns from X-6 through X-8.
  • Sugar Apocalypse
  • Sugar Bowl: Well, it starts that way...
  • Surprise Creepy: It's gradual, but it's still here.
  • Take That: The 'Metaphor for the Atomic Bomb' achievement takes a jab at the notorious hidden stars in Braid, which are difficult to find and change nothing (aside from the title screen). The tone is evident from the icon for the achievement: Zee Tee and Nehema making the 'awesome' face.
  • Treasure Is Bigger in Fiction: Look at those gems floating in the air.
  • The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: See the What the Hell, Player? entry below.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: The other interpretation of the "good" ending. The distinction might be academic...
  • Trial-and-Error Gameplay: Plenty of it, but getting a hundred percent completion on world 7 truly goes above and beyond—it's likely to take at least as long as the entire rest of the game put together to finally get those last six gems.
  • Unwinnable by Mistake: Some level designs can lead to the player getting stuck in one place without being able to get out or die, and the level must be restarted. Some instances of this were corrected in later versions, but it's still possible to purposely enter a unwinnable state in some locations. Fortunately, you can quit the level and restart without losing any of the gems you've collected during that level!
  • Updated Re-release: In high definition! That always happens to video games.
  • Wall Master: Level 4.
  • Wham Level: As mentioned above, level 4.
  • What the Hell, Player?: In the Steam version, the achievement for starting a game with an edited level is called "What Have You Done".
  • When All Else Fails, Go Right: But it's not ratcheted, so you can backtrack if necessary (and often it is).


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alternative title(s): Eversion
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