Savestate is a Furry Comic by Tim Weeks, started on February 5, 2014, with updates every Wednesday. It follows the adventures of twin anthropomorphic Australian Shepherds named Kade (male, blue merle) and Nicole (female, red merle).
Something the two have in common is a passionate love for video games. A lifelong passion, as they show their skill in everything from the original NES and Game Boy, to the Xbox One and PS4, and even the Virtual Boy.
As stated at the top, the comic takes some cues from previous webcomics. The main characters are fully anthro, though unlike Housepets!, it's apparently set in a World of Funny Animals. They are also fully grown-up; Kade, at least, is seen to have a job, and Nicole drives a car.note It also is heavily themed in video gaming, though it's not quite as snarky as VG Cats.
Much of the content is Slice of Life, though Tim launched the comic's first storyline when the twins inherited a mansion. An apparently haunted one at that.
This webcomic provides examples of:
- Absurdly Sharp Claws : Harvey has these here.
- Accessory-Wearing Cartoon Animal: Kade and Nicole only wear collars. (Nicole also has glasses.)
- Adorkable: Kade. He's a huge video game nerd and often acts like a big puppy, contrasting with Nicole's more mature behavior. Then there's this strip...
- A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Kade's ROB robot apparently went rogue. It turned out to be possessed.
- Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: This page demonstrates the trope quite well.
- Ambiguous Disorder: It's never brought up directly, but Kade's obsessive behavior with regards to video games, moments of overreacting, and trouble catching social cues could be indicative of some form of autism.
- Ambiguous Gender: Downplayed. The genders of the souls that occupy Harvey and Ness are unknown. Ness is referred to as a "she" since that's how Nicole referred to her before she was possessed. She never resisted that reference once possessed.
- Art Shift: A panel in this comic became an animated Pokemon-style game screen.
- Beat Panel: When Rick shows Kade and Nicole his Halloween costume.Kade: Who are you supposed to be?
Rick: I'm Rick.
Rick: From the Rick and Morty cartoon.
Nicole: Oh, okay. I thought we might have to drop you off at the psychiatric ward.
- Bonus points for the look of genuine concern on Kade and Nicole's faces.
- Beyond the Impossible: When Harvey breaks Kade's Nintendo Switch, Kade legit grabs the ghost by the throat. His ectoplasmic neck. Bare-handed. Blindfolded. Beware the Nice Ones indeed!
- Butt-Monkey: Kade is shaping up to have a bit of this.
- Call-Back: Harvey notes it's neutralized by light weapons like the NES Zapper. The possessed ROB zaps one of its arms.
- The Cameo/Crossover: A special guest and his buddy make an appearance at the Nintendo World Championships.
- Comically Missing the Point: Nicole reminds Kade that it's Valentine's Day. Kade calls Riley and asks her to watch his back while waiting in line.
- Cool and Unusual Punishment: Kade makes Nicole play Superman 64 in Hard Mode as punishment for posting an embarrassing video of him on YouTube.
- Cuteness Proximity: Mom around Ness.
- Deadpan Snarker: Nicole.
- Demonic Possession: After its resurrection, the spirit previously inhabiting ROB briefly possesses Nicole.
- Don't Explain the Joke: Nicole ended up doing this while Kade was making a snow replica of the small-scale arcade machines that were starting to be made for home use.
- Expressive Ears: A carton of four-year-old orange juice causes Kade's ears to unflop.
- Facehugger: Rick is subjected to this by Ness, much to his irritation and, apparently, Nicole's amusement.
- Foreshadowing: While everyone's hiding from ROB in Nicole's bedroom, Kade ironically wonders aloud "Are we hiding from ROB or Nicole?". A few strips later, Kade and Rick are running for their lives trying to escape a possessed Nicole.
- Flipping the Table: During their Thanksgiving Episode, Kade wants Nicole to help him do this. Nicole wants to wait until their Amazingly Embarrassing Parents focus on her and her squeaky toy Noodle Incident.
- Furry Confusion: Lampshaded in a strip where Zootopia comes up, where Rick wonders why there were only mammals in the movie and no reptiles or avians (which do exist in the comic's universe).
- During a strip talking about The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Kade points out that the Rito in previous Zelda games looked like "creepy humans with bird beaks". All characters shown in this comic- including video game characters- have been portrayed as some form of animal, with no sign that humans exist at all.
- Furry Reminder: Nicole's winter fur keeps her warm when the car breaks down, while Rick goes into a torpor.
- Kade, Nicole and the other dogs wag their tails when they're happy.
- While Rick, being a reptile, enjoys sunning himself on a rock during summer, neither Nicole nor Kade can stand the heat because of their fur.
- Kade has a bit of a shedding problem, as Rick recalls that back in their childhood days Kade's fur ruined a copy of Super Mario Bros. 3 and they had to take the cartridge apart to remove it.
- Kade also got a bit possessive of his Nintendo Switch pre-order receipt (which he wore on his collar) to the point he growled at Nicole.Nicole: When did you get that collar charm?
(Kade growls at her)
Nicole: Don't you bare your teeth at me. I'll call Mom and let her deal with you.
Kade: Sorry. Instinctive reaction.
- In the page featuring Mega Man 11, Mega Kade likes to chew on the Bounce Ball, the weapon you get from Bounce Man. Dr. Light apparently had to remind him multiple times that it is a weapon, NOT a chew toy.
- Ghost in the Machine: ROB, until he was exorcised by Nicole's smartphone doing text-to-speech from a spells book in Uncle Scooby's library. Unfortunately, it exorcised Harvey, too.
- Gosh Dang It to Heck!: When Nicole plays the levels made by Kade on Super Mario Maker, that's how she vents her frustration.Nicole: Son of a biscuit.
- The Grim Reaper: A ghoul that looks like it haunts their mansion. Initially, only Nicole can see "Harvey".
- Hair Color Dissonance: Kade and his mom both have blue fur. In real life, blue merle dogs are actually gray◊.
- Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Clothes are optional in Savestate's world: although most secondary characters wear shirts (the lawyer seemed to be fully dressed, including pants) and Kade is shown wearing a hoodie at some point, the twins usually wear only a collar. Tim explains it as Kade and Nicole acting immature, having not grown out of wearing collars yet.
- Rick is always fully-clothed. Tim says he has to be, especially in the winter, since he's an iguana, and therefore cold-blooded.
- Halloween Episode: Starting here and running for the next 5 strips. it's kicked off by Nicole suggesting that Harvey get a job at the local haunted house.
- Hollywood Genetics: Averted: The twins' father is a standard red Australian Shepherd. Since their mother is blue merle like Kade, if both parents were merles it could make for some weird genetic consequences.
- Humiliation Conga: When Harvey was given the idea to work at a haunted house, first he wasn't hired because he didn't have ID (because he's dead). Then when he snuck into the haunted house to scare people freelance, everyone recognized him as Harviplier.
- I Just Shot Marvin in the Face: A non-lethal comedic example. Kade accidentally shoots himself in the nose with a Nerf gun that he strengthened the springs on.Nicole: That's kind of cool. Can I borrow it?
Kade: ALL I CAN SMELL IS BLOOD!!!
- I Want Grandkids: Mom pulls this on the kids in the Thanksgiving 2017 arc.Mom: You know, I always thought Nicole would be the first one to give me grandpuppies.
Kade: *Spit Take*
Nicole: And now it's weird. Thanks, Mom.
- Considering the bonding between Kade and Riley in the ensuing Christmas/New Year's Eve arc, this may be foreshadowing.
- Ineffectual Death Threats: Harvey is prone to making these.Harvey: Meet Nicole, YouTubers. Don't get too attached, she's not going to survive the night.
- Innocently Insensitive: On their first foray into Fortnite, Kade dresses up like a dinosaur, and Rick is...disappointed.Rick: I'm trying to decide if this is more disturbing or offensive.
Kade: I can swap the backpack for a black bow if it'll make you feel better.
Rick: You're so far into the Uncanny Valley at this point it doesn't really matter.
- In-Series Nickname: When Harvey talks about Kade he usually calls him "the blue one".
- Konami Code: Kade draws it in dust on a table at the old mansion.
- The spell used to make ROB (and Harvey) go inert is the Konami Code written in Hylian.
- Literal-Minded: Harvey likes to play this game frequently.Riley: Ugh. Harvey, what are you doing?
Harvey: You said if I stayed in the back room I could play with the video games.
Riley: I meant play the games on the cartridges. Not arrange them into a creepy demonic spell circle.
Harvey: You need to learn to be more specific.
- Magic Eye: Subverted, Kade's right eye is tan and he wears a blue contact lens to make it match the other, and removing the lens allows him to see Harvey, but everyone else could see him already.
- Turns out ROB was jinxing his contacts to do that.
- Meaningful Name: Following the video game theme, "Kade" sounds similar to "arcade".
- Möbius Neighborhood: This appears to be the case between Kade and Nicole's house, and Amber, a reindeer who lives across the street with her husband and two kids. (Kade and Nicole are the odd ones in this case.)
- My Instincts Are Showing: Kade is very protective of his Nintendo Switch pre-order receipt.
- Nintendo Hard: The levels Kade made for Nicole on Super Mario Maker, judging from her pure enjoyment.
- Non-Mammal Mammaries: Females do have breasts, though Nicole's are usually de-emphasized since she doesn't wear clothes.
- Noodle Implement: A squeaky toy.
- Noodle Incident: Nicole hints that there's an embarrassing story about her and Kade when they were puppies involving a squeaky toy.
- Not-So-Fake Prop Weapon: When Riley takes the group to a summer festival, Kade is dressed as a character from Power Rangers SPD, complete with sword. When he tries to demonstrate that it's fake, he accidentally cuts his arm.
- One-Word Title: Also a Portmantitle.
- Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Color-coded by fur, in this case. Inverted with their parents.
- Puppy Love: Kade's interactions with Riley veer into this category. Though it might have something to do with the fact that she works at a video game store.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: Real life events have featured in multiple storylines.
- The mansion storyline kicked off as an obvious salute to Casey Kasem, as they found out their "Uncle Scooby" died.note
- Kade manages to compete in the 2015 Nintendo World Championships but loses in Mario Kart 8, so the competition is won, just like in real life, by John Numbers.note
- The recent release of the Nintendo Classic Edition and the Nintendo Switch have both been featured in recent strips.
- Real Person Cameo: This strip features Shigeru Miyamoto, as a tanuki!
- Relative Error: An unseen couple mistakes Kade and Nicole for a couple on an airplane ride when leaving their daughter to sit by them.
- Riley makes the same mistake, but is quickly corrected.
- Running Gag: Battletoads and its notoriously Nintendo Hard nature seems to be coming up frequently lately.Comic description for 9/9/2015: Playing the right video games with kids can be a great bonding experience Battletoads is not one of those games.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: After Harvey is resurrected, he bails on Kade, Nicole and Rick when it seems they resurrected the spirit that possessed ROB, too.Nicole: You're bailing on us!?
Harvey: I've already been dead once today. You guys can take a turn. Bye!
- Sealed Evil in a Teddy Bear: While Harvey isn't exactly the traditional "teddy bear" type of cute, he possesses a certain kind of creepy cuteness. Kade initially thinks he's adorable, and even though he is some sort of Elder God, he is easily held at bay and rendered harmless by Rick's tail.
- Sensory Abuse: Kade did this to himself with a Virtual Boy during a long car ride. He ended up with red eyes and blurry vision.
- Shopping Montage: That one time at the mall. Even the girly places.Kade: If you had a boyfriend you wouldn't have to drag me into places like this.
- Shout-Out: Being about video games at its core, Savestate has these in spades:
- The Savestate logo (pictured above) is an obvious homage to the Sonic the Hedgehog 2 logo.
- The font used for the Savestate logo is an intentional nod to that of Solatorobo, a game featuring anthro dogs.
- The first couple of strips are about Pokémon, and invoke the Missingno glitch.
- Uncle Scooby's probate attorney is a bit obsessed with Ace Attorney.
- Kade also loves The Legend of Zelda.
- Kade has an interesting strategy for Watch_Dogs.
- And he gets splattered playing Titanfall due to Xbox One issues.
- Kade's emergency kit features a Dr. Mario pill and a Minecraft torch.
- The runes in the spell book might look a bit familiar...that's because they're Ancient Hylian, precisely the Skyward Sword font, with the top cut off.
- Likewise, deciphering the spell used to resurrect Harvey reveals it's, fittingly, the Sonata of Awakening.
- Here's one to Markiplier, and, more specifically, his FNAF 4 playthrough.
- Then there's this reference to the Jurassic Park series.
- Shy Finger-Twiddling: Nicole does this when Kade is mad at her for the aforementioned YT video.
- Snarky Inanimate Object: The modem likes to troll Kade.
- Spit Take: Kade does one when Mom suggests puppies in his and Riley's future.
- Suspiciously Specific Denial:
- Symbol Swearing: Once, near the beginning of the comic.
- Thanksgiving Episode: Kade and Nicole's parents visit their children here. Hilarity Ensues.
- Vomit Discretion Shot: When Nicole tries out the Virtual Boy...
- Unexpected Inheritance: First major arc is them inheriting a mansion from "Uncle Scooby".
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Kade and Nicole's parents aren't shocked at all when they learn that their kids live with a ghost rabbit and a demon-possessed plush toy and immediately act as if it's completely normal.
- The Unreveal: Tim "answered" an AMA about the Twins' dad by showing him off-frame trying to figure out a camera.Kade: Hey Nicole, how much you want to bet I can speed run Metroid before Dad figures out the camera?
Mom: Kade, sweetie, be quiet.
- Unwanted Assistance: Harvey and Ness decide to help Kade and Nicole clear snow from the car here.
- Waking Non Sequitur: Kade gets hit by a gigantic snowball and concussed by Harvey after Nicole hits him with a snowball, and Scapegoats Kade.Nicole: Kade... are you still alive?
Kade: I failed to get the Ocarina and now the Moon has crushed us all.
Nicole: Okay... Maybe you should go warm up...
Kade: Not now! I need to find the Boss Key.
Nicole: Uh, I think I saw it inside next to the first aid kit.
Kade: To the Fairy Fountain, Epona!
- Weirdness Censor: Kade somehow utterly fails to see the spectral rabbit thing Nicole is pointing out.
- Wide Eyes and Shrunken Irises: Harvey finally finds someone he can scare in Riley:Harvey: I snuck up on Rick and he didn't even flinch. No one's scared of me.
Kade: That's not true.
Harvey: Name someone who thinks I'm scary.
Kade: Well Riley hasn't inhaled since you laid down in her lap.
[Harvey looks up, sees Riley frozen in fear]
Harvey (overjoyed, grabs Riley's shoulders): You really think I'm scary?
Riley: W...why did it suddenly grow arms?
- Your Soul Is Mine: When Kade puts a photo of himself in front of the Kinect it says "Soul depleted, please add a new Meatbag to your account." And he has to use a photo with his eyes closed because otherwise they turn black after a day.
- Harvey the rabbit-daemon-ghost-thingy threatens to do this to Kade for blocking its view of the TV.