Gumball's late birthday present from the Awesome Store is a handheld game system which turns all of Elmore into an RPG.
- 100% Completion: When the party go on the sidequest to find Alisons pigeons, Gumball mentions completionism as the bane of all serious gamers. Ending the game only 89% cleared causes to Gumball start the game over again before Darwin or Anais can stop him.
- Affectionate Parody: Of JRPGs, especially Final Fantasy VII.
- Age-Inappropriate Dress: Anais wears a very ridiculous-looking outfit over an unseen alternative (which included leather platform boots) because "[she doesn't] think that was age appropriate".
- Aluminum Christmas Trees: The Game Child was an actual rip-off released in the Game Boy's heyday, but it's unknown if the writers knew about it.
- An Ice Person: Sarah's summon attack during the final battle is "Brain Freeze," which sees her removing her own ice-cream scoop head and throwing it at the console monster for cold damage.
- And I Must Scream: Mr. Robinson has no choice but to act as an NPC and let Gumball ransack his house.
- Anime Hair: When the heroes notice the incredibly obvious final dungeon, Gumball insists they rush to it as soon as possible, or they'll get anime hair. Immediately after saying this, the trio's portraits change: Anais has bright pink pigtails, Gumball has Cloud's hair, and Darwin has Sephiroth's.
- Antagonist Title: The titular console is the Big Bad of the episode.
- Artifact of Doom: Three, all coming from THE AWESOME STORE; Some fertilizer that turns Leslie into a plant monster, a smart phone that possesses Penny and as a twist, the handheld console making all this happen. The proprietor of the store points out people really shouldn't expect much else buying things out the back of a van.
- Basement-Dweller: Jokes about the stereotype abound, from Anais and Darwin commenting that a gamer's greatest weaknesses are tortilla chips, sugary drinks, and the sun, respectively, to Gumball briefly transforming into a fat, acne-scarred, long-haired blob wearing a gamer-esque outfit (complete with headset) after completing the "Find My Pigeons" sidequest.
- Beam Spam: Banana Joe's summon attack—he releases thousands of beams of energy to cause massive damage. Unlike the other characters' Personality Powers, his makes absolutely no sense—although that's arguably the joke.
- Big "NO!":
- Gumball lets one out when he accidentally triggers the Point of No Return before the final boss without saving his game.
- Anais and Darwin shout "NO!" when they try to stop Gumball from restarting the video game.
- Bold Inflation: The game dialogue entirely capitalizes "THE AWESOME STORE" to show it's important. Unfortunately, due to the fact that dialogue is also actually spoken, NPCs and party members both are Suddenly SHOUTING! everytime they mention it.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: The items Leslie and Penny bought at THE AWESOME STORE turn them into monsters who fight Gumball, Darwin, and Anais. Defeating them is enough to snap them back to normal.
- Call-Back: The console was bought at THE AWESOME STORE - a.k.a. the creepy van from where Richard bought the evil turtle in "The Puppy" as well as Darwin in "The Origins" and from where Rob got the universal remote in "The Disaster/The Rerun".
- Chekhov's Gun: Not the healing potion Darwin provided Gumball at the beginning of the game, but the smart phone that allows him to summon allies.
- Collection Sidequest: Finding all of Alison's pigeons, which are naturally all over the map.
- Comedic Sociopathy: When Gumball and his party run out of enemies to defeat to round off their Level Grinding, they resort to attacking innocent civilians.
- Comically Missing the Point:
- Before Richard shows Gumball his present, he asks to have back the IOU he gave him on his last birthday. Gumball gets annoyed, assuming Richard is telling him he won't be giving him a gift at all.
- When the party is brought down to one hitpoint, Darwin urges Gumball to use the healing potion he gave him back at the beginning. He throws it at the boss.
- Contractual Genre Blindness: Gumball justifies looting from Mr. Robinson's house through the argument that it's what you do in role-playing games; Darwin and Anais still feel he's "just ransacking an old man's house". Mr. Robinson encourages Gumball to take whatever he needs for his quest, but is shown shedding a tear during a close-up with a fixed smile (meaning that the game is forcing him to let Gumball carry on stealing).
- Dark Is Not Evil: The proprietor of THE AWESOME STORE is a Living Shadow that sold Richard the titular console. That said, he's actually on Gumball's side, and suggests that Richard should've known better than to buy something from a van.
- Death Glare: Nicole's part in the summon against the final boss is called "I'm not angry, just disappointed" and consists of a stern glare at the boss.
- The Dog Was the Mastermind: The villain of Inverted Paradox: The Enemy Within isn't THE AWESOME STORE, but the game console that Gumball spends the episode carrying.
- Elemental RockPaperScissors: Discussed when the group is fighting the possessed Leslie; Anais points out that "a plant monster should be weak to fire attacks!" Gumball promptly snarks that anything would be weak to being set on fire.
- Fartillery: Richard's attack, the "Ring of Fire", is a fart portrayed as a planet-annihilating special attack.
- Finger Poke of Doom: Hector's attack is "The Psyche", where he starts to throw a punch but flicks the boss with his finger instead.
- Foreshadowing: Parodied. Every character screams THE AWESOME STORE to make sure Gumball gets the hint that it's the target.
- Fridge Brilliance: In-Universe, Anais admits enhanced vision from platform boots makes some sense when Gumball suggests it works by making you taller. Likewise, Gumball realizes the game's title is more than gibberish when it's revealed that the game console is the Big Bad.
- Gondor Calls for Aid: How the cell phone works in the final battle—Gumball summons other citizens of Elmore, who attack the console monster with unique powers.
- Gotta Catch 'Em All: Parodied with Alison's "Find All My Pigeons" sidequest. Gumball screams that it's a "gamer's worst nightmare"—the compulsive desire to get 100% completion.
- Here We Go Again!: The episode ends on Gumball starting the game again because he only got 89% completion, with Darwin and Anais failing to stop him.
- Hidden in Plain Sight: The console Gumball carried around all episode is the true Big Bad of the game, and goes One-Winged Angel and attacks the Watterson children when outed as such.
- HP to 1: The final boss knocks MYBUTT's party down to 1 hit point at the start of the battle.
- Hyperactive Sprite: When the world goes into game mode, Darwin and Anais always fidget slightly when otherwise standing in place.
- Insurmountable Waist-Height Fence: The Watterson party is blocked from leaving their yard by a random shrub blocking the path. They heavily lampshade that they can't walk around it for no logical reason and, because it's a preexisting encounter, they can't use any item that would logically be able to cut down a small shrub like a chainsaw.Darwin: Oh no, the path is blocked by an awkwardly placed shrub (annoyed) and we're apparently too stupid to walk on the lawn.
MYBUTT uses AXE. It is ineffective.
MYBUTT uses SAW. It is ineffective.
Gumball: Can MYBUTT just use common sense and walk around it?
MYBUTT uses SARCASM. It is ineffective.
- Kill It with Fire: During an encounter with a plant monster, Anais suggests it's susceptible to fire. Gumball snarks that most things are susceptible to fire.
- Lampshade Hanging: When Gumball and co. come across a bush in their walkway that they can't get around, Darwin points it out and says that they're "apparently too stupid to walk on the lawn."
- Law of Cartographical Elegance: At one point, we see a new world map in reference to a Collection Sidequest, and sure enough, the continents fit neatly in a square frame. The style is clearly a visual reference to the maps from the Dragon Quest series, particularly Dragon Quest VII.
- Level Grinding: Gumball urges his party to beat up every weak enemy in sight to level up enough for the final boss. They grind against multiple small wild animals before running out and moving onto random citizens.
- Limit Break: Gumball uses the smartphone he got from Penny earlier to call down a very Knights of the Round-like summon on the final boss of the game.
- Major Injury Underreaction: Penny graciously brushes off the hit she took from Gumball accidentally slamming her with Mr. Robinson's VHS player. Then, her dialogue box collapses and she passes out.
- Man-Eating Plant: The "awkwardly-placed shrub" turns out to be Leslie, mutated into a plant monster.
- The Most Dangerous Video Game: The Game Child turns Elmore into a giant video game.
- Ninja Prop: Gumball tries to shut Leslie up by grabbing the dialogue box and smacking his character portrait with it when the next one appears. Instead of simply acting as a mute button, the trauma knocks out both the portrait and the real Leslie.
- Notice This: Darwin points out Alison as having a possible lead. Gumball noticed before him because she has a sunbeam spotlight.
- One-Winged Angel: Upon the reveal that the Game Child is the true villain of the game, it instantly assumes a monstrous form and turns the mall's parking lot into an Amazing Technicolor Battlefield.
- Painting the Medium: When Penny passes out mid-sentence, her text box falls over.
- Personality Powers: During the final battle, each of the allies (except Banana Joe, because it's funnier that way) Gumball summons uses an attack based on their body shape or personality: Sarah throws her ice cream scoop head, Nicole summons a "Disappointed in You Glare," Hector flicks the boss, etc.
- Point of No Return: When Gumball's party goes to THE AWESOME STORE, they get dragged in even though Gumball protests.
- Reality Ensues: Gumball tries to gift an item to the possessed Penny in order to pacify her. His "animation" thus involves launching a VHS player at her... which hits her in the head, instantly defeating her and denting her head.
- Red Herring: THE AWESOME STORE isn't the Big Bad of the game, the console itself is.
- RPG Episode: Elmore is turned into a giant RPG that is mostly a parody of Final Fantasy VII.
- Rummage Sale Reject: One scene has Anais equipped with a getup much like Luso Clemens in the trope image◊. She picked this over what is implied to be a Chainmail Bikini with leather platform boots for being age-inappropriate. She then goes on to wonder aloud how wearing those could improve your Vision stat.Gumball: Well, they make you taller, don't they?
Anais: (gasp) ...Oh, that actually makes sense.
- Running Gag: THE AWESOME STORE!
- Shoddy Knockoff Product: The game console is a Game Child, and even the country it was made in (Chainor) is a knockoff. Richard points out that everything they own is a cheap knockoff, pointing out the Soppy television set and the Badman comic book. Even the doctor Richard goes to only had an art doctorate, although he did do a good job with the appendectomy scar, shaped like a still life.
- Science Hero: In-game, Anais wields a move simply called SCIENCE.
- The Game Child is a shoddy knockoff of the Game Boy. Unsurprisingly, a device with such a name actually exists as well (although the use of the name in the show being a Shout-Out in itself is a bit of a stretch), reviewed by Stuart Ashen, who even made a full-length feature film about it.
- The Badman comic is a ripoff of Batman, with the art style being based on Batman's Golden Age incarnation.
- The entire episode is a riff on JRPGs in general, though most references are aimed at Final Fantasy (specially Final Fantasy VII). The Inverted Paradox logo resembles the Final Fantasy VII logo, the battle music sounds similar to VII's, Gumball gets Cloud Strife's hair as part of a quick gag, the scene where Gumball uses Summon Magic with the smart phone is similar to the summon animations in VII, and the Game Child gains Sephiroth's hair, halo, and devil and angel wings when it gains its One-Winged Angel form.
- Anais questioning why her weapon has a trigger is likely a Take That! to the Gunblade while the sword itself looks sort of like a black Monado.
- The final fight involves the main characters reaching out to various people they've met upon their journey, who in turn do heavy damage to the boss with their thoughts and energy. That's the exact same scenario as the boss battle against Giygas in Earthbound.
- Banana Joe's Summon Magic animation is a carbon copy of Cactuar's 1000 Needles.
- Darwin's post-battle victory animation is identical to Chun Li's.
- At the end of Gumball, Anais, and Darwin's rampage on the citizens of Elmore, they finish off Billy with a rainbow Combination Attack just like a Chrono Trigger Triple Tech.
- When Penny is possessed by a smartphone from THE AWESOME STORE, it turns her into a Borg.
- Skewed Priorities: Despite knowing its effects on Elmore, Gumball starts the game again because he failed to get 100% Completion over the course of the episode.
- Sudden Game Interface: Visible to everyone, but Gumball as the PC gets the most control.
- Suddenly SHOUTING!: After the game starts, every instance of THE AWESOME STORE causes people to suddenly shout it out.
- Super OCD: Gumball's desire to complete the game despite the danger it represents can be considered this.
- Temporary Bulk Change: After Gumball completes the "Find My Pigeons" sidequest," he's somehow transformed into a stereotypical Basement-Dweller by becoming incredibly fat. He's back to his regualr self in the next scene.
- Too Awesome to Use: Parodied. Gumball doesn't want to use his one potion during the Final Boss battle because he thinks he might need it later. Darwin promptly calls him out on how ridiculous this is.
- Video Game Cruelty Potential:
- Gumball willfully exploits the fact that video games basically allow PCs to loot NPC houses and takes Mr. Robinson's stuff. Then, when Mr. Robinson is forced to respond positively by the game he empties his wallet and moves on to sleeping in his bed. Mr. Robinson starts crying.
- After running out of small animals to level grind on the Watterson party starts blasting random civilians, starting with a mother taking her baby for a stroll.
- Video Game Perversity Potential: In-universe, Gumball abuses the ability to name himself by picking "MYBUTT" as a player name, and everyone calls him that without noticing how increasingly ridiculous it sounds.Darwin: Please MYBUTT, tell me what is going on.
Anais: A foul curse has been unleashed upon our town by MYBUTT.
Darwin: You mean the gates of doom were opened by MYBUTT?
Anais: The fabric of the universe was ripped apart by MYBUTT.
Darwin: MYBUTT has made quite a mess.
Gumball: Surely this is gonna get old at some point.
Darwin: Here's some healing ointment to help MYBUTT in the heat of battle.
Gumball: (giggles) Nope.
- Whole Plot Reference: Played with. While not plot wise, the episode is clearly an entire episode reference to JRPG conventions established by the Final Fantasy titles, especially by Final Fantasy VII and Final Fantasy VIII, in regards to mechanics, general plot and etc.
- Win to Exit: Gumball has to complete the game in order to return Elmore to normal.
- Word Salad Title: The game Elmore is sucked into is called Inverted Paradox: The Enemy Within, which causes Gumball to complain about video games having meaningless nonsense for titles. Turns out that subtitle is entirely appropriate because the console itself was their enemy all along.
- Worth It: How Gumball reacts after having collected all the pigeons and transformed into a Basement-Dweller to obtain the No Life trophy.