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Video Game / Ape Out

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Ape Out is a Beat 'em Up game developed by Gabe Cuzzillo and published by Devolver Digital, with art by Foddy. The game was released for PC and Nintendo Switch on February 28, 2019.

As the title suggests, you play as a rampaging giant ape and your goal is to escape a facility while smashing through human guards.

This game provides examples of:

  • Alien Blood: While all the guards have normal red blood, the ape's blood glows neon colors.
  • Arc Words: "Out." Not only is it half of the title and the ape's ultimate goal, but the final level of each disc has it in the name.
  • Big Labyrinthine Building: Disc 2 has you starting at the 30th floor of a skyscraper and splattering your way to the ground floor.
  • Blackout Basement: In "Subject 4" you rip off an energy generator from the wall, causing a blackout that extends all the way to the next level. One of the levels in "Fugue" has a blackout caused by a bombing, while one of the ship levels in "Adrift" has lights intermittently going off and on. Unlike most examples of this trope, the darkness is solely to your advantage—you can see perfectly well in the dark, but your enemies only see you if you get in the beam of their flashlights.
  • Bioweapon Beast: Presumably, the ape is this: it's strong enough to break through hardened glass walls, rip steel doors off their hinges, throw humans with enough force to reduce them to bloody splatters, and heal bullet wounds (assuming the healing in-between sections isn't just a gameplay mechanism). It's also referred to as "Subject 4" in the first level.
  • Bulletproof Human Shield: A primary tactic of the ape; it can even force a hostage to fire at the other humans and then throw their body to kill some more.
  • Creepy Jazz Music: 99% of the soundtrack consists of a frenetic drum solo, amplifying the chaotic atmosphere of the game. However, the final song, once the ape has escaped the zoo, is Pharoah Sanders' "You've Got to Have Freedom," a free jazz piece that somehow encapsulates both joy and unrest, but is not creepy by most standards.
  • Die, Chair, Die!: Doors and glass walls are not spared the gorilla's wrath.
  • Dirty Coward: The small enemies that run away from the ape when they're spotted, but shoot you when your back is turned.
  • Enemy Civil War: "Enemy" being humanity as a whole, that is. At the beginning of Fugue, the ape was able to escape its cage because a plane dropped a bomb on the facility. Presumably, whatever organization that captured the ape is at war with the plane's owner.
  • Exploding Barrels: Fuel barrels are present on some levels. When they are shot, or an enemy is tossed at them, they burst into flames that can set any nearby enemies (or you) on fire.
  • Fire-Breathing Weapon: Some of the human opponents wield flamethrowers.
  • Forced Friendly Fire: The ape can force hostages to shoot other enemies.
  • Grenade Hot Potato: When the explosive-toting enemies toss a bomb at you, you can pick it up and throw it back, although it's obviously risky.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: Once you grab a guard, you can use him as a projectile. You can also toss body parts at guards, which won't kill them but will stun them for a moment.
  • Humans Are Bastards:
    • The humans are holding the gorilla and its baby captive along with other animals.
    • Some of the guards have bombs strapped to them just to prevent you from getting close, implying that your human captors have no regard for human lives either.
  • Kaizo Trap: The end of "Break In". Think you're safe because you've made it back all the way to the parking lot? A police cruiser has appeared in the meantime, with one last surprise rifle guard.
  • Killer Gorilla: You play as one. The point of the game is to unleash the strength of a gorilla on everything and anything in your path.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: The fate of the guards that you throw against the walls.
  • Made of Plasticine: It makes sense that the ape's strength would cause immense gore, but even a single bullet will turn most humans into a fine red mist with maybe a limb or two intact.
  • Minimalism: The game's art style, which makes the violence and gore caused by the ape to look beautiful, instead of terrifying if the game looked realistic. It also turns the human beings you tear apart into literal Faceless Goons, so you won't feel bad about mercilessly slaughtering them.
  • Mook Maker: Elevator doors, which regularly open to deploy new enemies as long as you're nearby.
  • Musical Gameplay: One of the game's main selling points. Nearly everything you do influences the drum solo that is the background music in some way. Being near more guards causes the drums to become more intense, with a cymbal crash playing each time you splatter a guard. As you move away from the guards' sights, the drum solo slowly dies down. The rhythm and sound of the drums also changes depending on what kind of area you're in.
  • Papa Wolf: The bonus level has you breaking into a facility to rescue a baby gorilla and escaping.
  • Pacifist Run: The "Pacifist" achievement, where you have to complete an album without killing any guards.
  • Technical Pacifist: If a guard you’re holding as a human shield shoots a fellow guard, it doesn’t count against you for the “Pacifist” achievement. Same applies to enemies who die by bomb explosion—even if you have thrown the bomb at them.
  • Title Drop: Finishing each Disc rewards you with the words "APE OUT".
  • Video Game Caring Potential: In the final level of Disc 4, you've been captured and are being held in a zoo. As you escape, you can smash cages holding other dangerous wildlife like bears, snakes, and lions to let them take their own revenge on the guards.
  • Video Game Flamethrowers Suck: The flamethrowers carried by the mooks have a very short range, making it easy to run away from those types of enemies.