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Video Game / Deltarune

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No one can choose who they are in this world.

Due to the game's nature and its relation to Undertale, all spoilers will be unmarked! You Have Been Warned!

Deltarune is the Role-Playing Game successor (not exactly a sequel) to Undertale created by Toby Fox, who describes it as "a game you can play after you complete UNDERTALE, if you want to". Initially teased by someone who may or may not be W.D. Gaster on the Undertale twitter account on October 30, 2018, the first chapter of the game was released a day later for Windows and macOS in the guise of a "survey program," only to be revealed as a demo for a full experience. A port of the first chapter was released on Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 on February 28, 2019. Deltarune: Chapter 2 is set to be released on September 17, 2021, according to an announcement during the sixth anniversary stream of Undertale. The remainder of the game still has no release date.


Despite the ambiguous relationship to Undertale, Toby has — as stated above — made it clear that you should play the original first.

The town of Hometown is a perfectly normal and charming little sunny suburban community where pretty much all the residents are monsters living peaceful and mundane lives. You, the player, are placed in the role of Kris, the only human resident of the town. Otherwise, Kris lives in a perfectly normal house with their rather overprotective and snail-obsessed mom, Toriel.

One day at school, Kris and resident bully Susie are tasked to get some chalk from the supply closet. Said closet turns out to be Bigger on the Inside, and Kris and Susie somehow fall into a dark and otherworldly place. They form an uneasy alliance to protect themselves against creatures with Playing Card Motifs that inhabit the place, and soon they meet the Prince of Darkness, Ralsei, who tells them that they are the fabled "DELTA WARRIORS" who are prophesied to save the world. But the dark world is full of many opponents and oddball characters, as well as the continued question of what kind of heroes they will be, and whether the choices they make matter or not.


Gameplay fundamentals have changed little from Undertale (with Timed Hits and the ability to non-lethally defeat enemies being core parts of the system), though it has changed to accommodate three party members, each with their own classes and abilities. Kris is The Leader, able to ACT in battle to direct their party members or directly interact with their enemies. Ralsei is the White Mage, able to cast powerful healing magic and subdue his opponents by knocking them out with a sleeping spell. Susie is The Berserker, dealing tons of damage with her mighty axe and usually opting for more violent solutions to her encounters. The game also introduces a TPnote  system for combat, allowing the player to build up a special gauge by guarding, taking damage, attacking or grazing bullets, with excess TP converted into money after battles.


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    General Tropes 
  • Adaptational Badass: In Undertale, it's stated that all monsters are physically weaker than humans (and can technically be overpowered even by a human child) due to not having as much physical matter as humans, which can be worsened by their vulnerability to Killing Intent. In this game, however, it's implied to not be the case.note  If anything, the difference in physical matter between humans and monsters is irrelevant and the monsters you fight are largely on equal footing with a human like Kris. Darkners know what blood is and shouldn't be familiar with it in the current age if humans were the only sapient blood-filled beings, so the difference between a darkner and a lightner monster may be vastly different as well. However, Susie is also able to physically overpower Kris and no one entertains the possibility Kris could survive if she really wanted to hurt them, and is generally presented as being at worst on even footing with Kris. King's Killing Intent (being a murderous psychopath who very much wants the party dead) also doesn't seem to allow him to do any additional damage to her either, which would be the case in Undertale.
  • Adaptation Personality Change: While the returning Undertale characters largely preserve their old personalities, there's a few changes to imply that something is "off", probably because this game is supposed to take place in an Alternate Universe.
    • Perhaps the most glaring one is the meek shut-in in the northern part of town, who is all but said to be none other than Mettaton.
    • Papyrus doesn't even appear in the game, refusing to answer the door of his and Sans' house if you knock.
    • Alphys leaves an "anonymous" glowing review in the library of Mew Mew Kissy Cutie 2, favorably contrasting it with the original in every respect; in Undertale, she savaged it as a terrible sequel. She also show a stronger preference for western cartoons and comics over anime and manga, particularly being a fan of The Symptons.invoked
    • Undyne has no clue who Alphys, her eventual lover in Undertale, is, and she is missing her eyepatch.
    • Bratty and Catty, two best friends in the original game, are now hateful next-door neighbors.
  • Aerith and Bob: Considering that most monsters have made up or at least unusual names (Toriel, Papyrus, Undyne, Alphys, Asgore, etc.), it's a bit weird to see that one of the main characters of this game is named Susie.
  • all lowercase letters: The game's title is stylized this way, in contrast to Undertale's all-uppercase title.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • One of Undertale's many commentaries on role-playing games was defying We Buy Anything, as the various shopkeepers would not buy the player's junk since they didn't need it; you could only sell items to the one shopkeeper dumb enough to accept your stuff. Since Deltarune is closer to a traditional RPG and money is more useful, it drops this joke and lets you sell your stuff to any store.
    • One of King's attacks has him latch his spade tongue to the dodge window and make spikes protrude from its inside walls, followed by him pulling it around the screen. The spikes pop out the instant his tongue sticks to the window, but there's a grace period where they won't damage your SOUL if you were unfortunate enough to move it towards the edges without knowing what the attack was.
    • The game notices if you're playing through a second time after completing the game on any file. You can skip the entire opening scene in Hometown by going back to bed, warping you to the Dark World instantly.
    • If you make it to the first room of the Dark World in under eight minutes, there will be a special item there called the Wrist Protector. Obtaining it allows you to skip past all cutscene text extremely quickly by holding down a button. The Wrist Protector also doesn't take up any inventory space. So if you're going for a speedrun or are playing the game again, you can quickly skip past dialogue you don't want to see.
    • Similarly to boss fights in Undertale, losing to a boss and retrying the fight will skip the intro cutscene and start the fight immediately.
    • The first time you get a Game Over, you get a few screens of dialogue. It's changed to a simple "want to continue?" yes/no question every time you die after that until you quit the game. Alternatively, you can mash the Z button to skip the game over screen.
  • Anti-Grinding: Level Grinding is outright impossible since none of the enemies can actually die, leaving the characters' levels stuck at 1. Money can still be grinded for, but there are only two major shops with no overly expensive equipment and you'll typically have enough money to buy all the consumables you'll need if you're playing normally and not avoiding every encounter.
  • Arc Words:
    • "Shining" or "power" to the first game's "Determination", as well as the phrase "your choices don't matter"; this is contrasted to the message of Undertale quite severely, which was that your choices really do matter quite a lot. Furthering the contrast, the word "determination" never appears in Deltarune's first chapter.
    • Every keyword related to Dr. Gaster shows up either in-game or on the Twitter lead-up to its release. Things like "Very, very interesting", "Darker, yet darker", "Don't forget", "feedback" from nonsensical yet ominous surveys and variations of "be seeing you soon/you'll meet somebody soon".
  • Armor Is Useless: Not in terms of the gear you can equip, but in the Dark World, Kris has gauntlets, greaves, and a breastplate, and yet their default Defense stat is no higher than Ralsei or Susie’s, who are wearing robes and a sleeveless jacket respectively.
  • Art Evolution: The sprite animation in this game is more fluid, detailed, and dynamic compared to Undertale, which saved its most detailed stuff for very key moments. This is part of why Toby Fox has said the game is taking so much longer to produce.
  • Ascended Fanon: Explicitly played with, as the charmingly domestic town lifts elements common in fan works, such as Asriel surviving what happens to him in Undertale's Pacifist ending. But it also subverts a lot of those expectations as well, with many relationships from the previous game nonexistent, such as Undyne not knowing who Alphys is.
  • The Artifact: While giving his thoughts on the demo, Toby Fox admitted he found the ACT/FIGHT system a lot less meaningful now that it doesn't affect the ending.
  • Author Avatar: Once again, the Annoying Dog appears as Toby Fox's avatar. In Chapter 1, it can be seen via text actively working on the game in the library's computer lab.
  • Because Destiny Says So: Deconstructed as the central theme of Deltarune. Deltarune portrays the idea of fate and destiny in a scary and pressuring way. You don't get to choose your character and you don't get to choose how you play the game. Nowhere in the game do you actually have free will or make any impactful choices. In the ending, Kris tears out the SOUL from their chest, seemingly so they can have free will and a choice of their own, even if it's sinister or psychopathic, since Kris may not have wanted to be good or be a hero in the first place (and many characters make the point that Kris is acting very out of character, implied to be due to the influence of the player on their decisions and abilities.)
  • Brick Joke:
    • Among the various easter eggs in Undertale that hinted at Gaster and Deltarune is a Sound Test of sorts where the player is thanked for the "feedback" of listening to Gaster's song for a few seconds. Years later, the Deltarune demo is presented as another survey and Gaster's Theme is not-so-subtly featured in both the morbidly humorous vessel setup as well as in various other places later on.
    • Early in Undertale, Sans teases the protagonist with a fake word search puzzle featuring a character named "Ice-E" on the side of the paper. Ice-E is never seen or mentioned again anywhere in Undertale, but it turns out he's the mascot of a pizzeria in Deltarune's Hometown. A little one-off gag is turned into one of the clearest hints of Sans' origins.
  • Bullet Hell: In addition to the combat system being a refined form of this from the original game, there are also elements of it incorporated in the overworld at certain parts.
  • Bus Crash: As part of the Alternate Universe setting in the town, headstones for some of the monsters who were previously part of the Amalgams as well as Gerson can be found in a small graveyard, also retroactively naming them as well.
  • But Thou Must!: Appears to be the theme of the game; despite appearing to have a similar structure to Undertale in terms of choosing between pacifism or more violent methods, the game constantly forces you along only a single path. You are even told multiple times that "your choices don't matter", and many of the choices you are offered get rescinded immediately, in direct contrast to the extremely choice-driven experience of Undertale.
  • The Cameo: The Amalgams never came to be, but Everyman is still out there; he appears as part of the secret boss's merry-go-round attack and as graffiti in an alley.
  • Central Theme: In opposition to Undertale: Your choices don't matter. Your Character Customization choices at the start of the game are immediately discarded, you're unable to choose your partner in class, Dialogue Tree choices will result in no actual difference (sometimes, you won't even be given time to pick a choice before another character cuts you off), characters will tell you multiple times your choices don't matter, you are incapable of engaging in full genocide or full pacifist playthroughs like you could in Undertale, and at the end of the game, control of Kris is literally ripped away from you.
  • Character Level: Like Undertale, the game tracks your EXP and LV. However, EXP and LV still appear to quantify Killing Intent, and the protagonists are unable to kill anyone due to the enemy running away after a certain amount of health is lost (non-lethal beatings still don't give any EXP). Consequently, LV for the whole party is stuck at 1, making it essentially cosmetic. There is even a boss that must be overcome in another way due to it being able to heal itself more than the party can damage it, removing even the ability to non-lethally beat up every enemy in the game.
  • Character Customization: Subverted. The game opens with what appears to be a typical character creation sequence, instructing you to make and name a "vessel" for yourself. As soon as this process is done, the game first congratulates you on your new creation, but then informs you that your "vessel" will be discarded, since you are not actually allowed to choose who you play as. The game proper then begins, revealing that your Player Character is Kris, whose name and appearance are fixed.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: This time, you don't need to dig into the game's code or mess with the save files to catch hints of Dr. W.D. Gaster's presence in the world. To begin with, an entity who's implied to be Gaster or someone related to him heralds the release of Chapter 1 and its opening act when the game is first loaded. The noise from Entry #17 plays when trying to make calls in the dark world, he's implied to have driven at least one person insane with his revelations, and his theme song is incorporated in at least nine tracks of the soundtrack. A mysterious hill with a locked door to the south of Hometown makes a murmuring noise that's actually a slowed-down version of the noise from Entry #17. But by far the smoking gun for Gaster's likely involvement in the story is the presence of the site "" since December 2015 (when Undertale was still a very recent release), and until the actual game was announced, there was only one file on the website: a darkened image of lines of WingDings text (Gaster's signature writing style).
  • The Chosen Many: Kris, Susie, and Ralsei are this. According to prophecy, a human, a monster, and a dark prince are destined to save the world. Susie, however, wants nothing to do with this prophecy of Ralsei's.
  • Close-Contact Danger Benefit: You earn Tension Points, which can be used for spells, when the SOUL comes close to bullets.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The flying numbers that Shows Damage are colored differently based on which character dealt said damage. Kris's are blue, Susie's are pink, and Ralsei's are green.
  • Combat Exclusive Healing: Ralsei's healing spell is only usable in combat, and the TP it uses doesn't even stay after battle, as it's converted to money. Said money can be used to buy healing items that restore the same amount of health, but you can only carry so many of them.
  • Combination Attack: Played With. Some Acts have an upgraded version that's used with Ralsei and/or Susie, but using them also uses up said party member's turn. Played Straight with Susie's Red Buster, which deals massive damage.
  • Composite Character: Kris seems to be a hybridization of Frisk and Chara: their face, skin color, and silent nature lean more towards the former, while their clothes and relation to the Dreemurr family (especially Asriel) scream of the latter. Of course, after what happens in the ending, who knows how the three are connected?
  • Critical Existence Failure: Downplayed by the game's HP and revival mechanic. HP going to zero or lower causes a Non-Lethal K.O. that lasts until it's brought back up to the positives, requiring more healing the farther HP went into negative numbers. The implication is that you can fight unhindered to the point of collapsing, but not dying, and need to recover more the further you're pushed past that point.
  • Crystal Dragon Jesus: "The Angel" is worshiped at a church, complete with stained glass, a priest, and Sunday school. This would normally be an innocuous religion were it not for "the Angel's Heaven" being the thing that the Delta Warriors are supposed to banish, according to the prophecy spoken by Ralsei, which has unsettling implications.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Although some Darkners are bad people, most of them are just normal folks living their life in the Dark World.
  • Darker and Edgier: While Undertale could get quite dark, Deltarune is much more direct and, to a lesser degree, somewhat more cynical. Dialogue has swears appear more harshly and frequently (the most common one being Susie's frequent usage of "ass"), characters are less hopeful and more jaded, and the heavier themes come into play much earlier.
  • Death by Adaptation: Several characters from Undertale who were alive in the previous game are confirmed dead in this game, including Gerson the shopkeeper. You can find a cemetary for some of them in Hometown.
  • Deconstruction: Following in the footsteps of its predecessor, Deltarune loosely tries to deconstruct RPGs and the storyline and cast members of classic Dragon Quest or Final Fantasy-style games by having more of a psychological approach and a nitpick of the various tropes without trying to be too self-aware or critical. However, while Undertale was a deconstruction of Level Grinding and RPG combat, Deltarune mainly deconstructs the idea of But Thou Must! that most RPGs use by default thanks to usually having one defined plot outlined for the story, by showing just how bleak and suffocating a world where choices are superfluous at best would truly be. It outright proclaims that your choices are irrelevant and simply not giving you much in the way of options to begin with. It also deconstructs the fan's expectations of any sort of sequel or prequel by using an Alternate Universe plot to ruse and draw Paranoia Fuel from said expectations. invoked
  • Defend Command: Defend is a new option in the battle interface that lets party members steel themselves to take less damage on the enemy's turn. This also boosts the Tension Point gauge, which applies instantly with obvious benefits (for example, if you lack enough TP to heal with Ralsei's magic, defending with another character can let him cast the spell on the same turn).
  • Deliberately Monochrome: The Lightner characters have black-and-white dialogue portraits. The Darkner characters have fully-coloured portraits.
  • Developers' Foresight: If you select the FIGHT command while Ralsei is training you, but keep intentionally missing by not hitting the button to trigger an attack, Ralsei gets increasingly confused and agitated, and eventually decides to move on to teaching you how to DEFEND. If you then select "FIGHT" and miss again, Ralsei reaches his breaking point and politely ends the lesson.
    • If you only talk to Temmie after you're partnered with Susie and not before, then you will have never seen her boiled egg "partner". As such, her example of Susie being mean changes from saying her egg would never hatch to making fun of the way she talks.
    • K. Round isn't meant to be beatable by force, as it can heal faster than you can wear its health down. It still has "low health" in-battle text and a rudimentary defeat animation, just in case you tamper with the game to out-damage its healing.
    • Returning to Rouxls Kaard's shop after defeating the King causes him to receive new dialogue praising the heroes.
    • Getting to the Dark World in under eight minutes will allow the player to get an item that skips cutscene dialogue, on the off chance the player is speedrunning the game.
  • Double-Meaning Title: Aside from being an anagram of Undertale, Delta also is used in mathematical notation to designate the difference between two values, and Deltarune has many changes from Undertale. Finally, the Greek letter Delta is a triangle, at least when uppercase, and the party in Chapter 1 consists of three heroes known as the DELTA WARRIORS, the "Delta Rune" itself being the name of the Dreemur family royal crest
  • Equipment-Based Progression: You can't level up, since enemies just run away after draining their HP. Thus, the only way to increase stats is via weapons and armor.
  • Establishing Series Moment: The game begins with the player selecting between various appearances, likes, and a name. The game then tells you those choices "will now be discarded" because "no one can choose who they are in this world." This lets the player know what they're in for right away.
  • Experience Points: Battles end by saying how how many EXP you've earned, but you can never get any. As in Undertale, gaining EXP is Gaining the Will to Kill, and none of the party in Deltarune do so.
  • Eye Motifs: Eyes and vision are central themes, beginning with Kris's Hidden Eyes and having to blind eyes as part of a puzzle to enter the dark world, and Susie's Blinding Bangs shifting to Peek-a-Bangs to cement her Heel–Face Turn.
  • Greasy Spoon: QC's, the local diner, where Kris, Asriel, Asgore, and Toriel used to eat when they were all living together. Fittingly, the Southern-accented, kindhearted rabbit shopkeeper from Snowdin is the head waitress here, and calls Kris "hun".
  • Hard Truth Aesop:
    • In stark contrast to Undertale, this game makes the point that some people are too evil or unreasonable to be dealt with peacefully, and the only way to pacify them is through force.
    • Sometimes no matter what you do or how good you are, you have no control over your situation.
    • Conversely: Malicious people can be contained depending on the context, but never truly reformed. Jevil is imprisoned, but once released displays the same violent temperament Seam describes. Kris employs no level of violence comparable to Undertale's Genocide Route, since doing so would leave them stranded, but once they're home we see indications that they're just as detached and sociopathic as Chara was.
  • Have We Met Yet?: Back in Undertale, Sans' remarks about his original home, his accusations towards the "anomaly" and bothering at all to let Frisk stumble into the backroom lab of his house imply he expected the kid to know what he was going on about. In Deltarune, the SOUL is the one expressing through Kris curiosity about how people like Undyne and Sans are doing in this new world. To further muddle matters about what is happening, Sans denies knowing Kris while standing before a building that looks plucked right out of the original game's Snowdin.
  • Hello, [Insert Name Here]: Defied. The player is given the choice to enter multiple values for their character, only to have all of them discarded before the game starts. The names are present in the save file itself, though, which starts by overwriting a pre-existing file labelled "Kris".
  • Interspecies Adoption: Kris is a human who is adopted by the Dreemurr family.
  • Interspecies Friendship: Kris forms some with Susie, Ralsei, and Lancer in the Dark World, and seems to get on well with some of their classmates.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: Deltarune spoils a few things about some of the endings for Undertale; perhaps most notable being the original game's twist of "the protagonist and the player are separate entities" being casually mentioned during the character creation screen. The game's official site does state it's "intended for people who have completed Undertale."
  • Leitmotif: Besides the original Leitmotif Once Upon A Time, which shows up a few times (most notably in You Can Always Come Home, a reprise of Home from the original game), there's a new Leitmotif called Don't Forget.
  • Lighter and Softer: So far. Sort of. While Deltarune as a whole is more cynical and depressing than Undertale, so far it has yet to get nearly as dark as Undertale's darker moments. For example, in Undertale, the violent route ended with the complete extinction of the Underground's inhabitants, but in Deltarune violent options result in a Non-Lethal K.O. at best, and a minimal modification of the post-Final Boss scene at worst.
  • Lonely Piano Piece: If the player chooses not to continue if they die, one called Darkness Falls plays.
    Then the world
    was covered
    in darkness.
  • Masculine, Feminine, Androgyne Trio: Playable characters Kris (androgyne), Susie (masculine girl), and Ralsei (feminine boy).
  • Nap-Inducing Speak: While you can't read Ralsei's manual, you can use it in battle to make enemies sleepy and vulnerable to his Pacify spell.
  • New Game+: After completing Chapter 1 once, you can replay the chapter without cutscenes, presumably for speedruns. Return to bed after Toriel wakes you up and a warning prompt will ask you to confirm if you're sure, since you will miss a lot of story content. Continue, and you will skip ahead to regaining consciousness in the Dark World. Above the starting area is a Wrist Protector, which allows you to skip cutscenes by holding down the C button.
  • Non-Lethal K.O.:
    • Enemies flee or get blasted away when out of HP. Notably, EXP is unattainable by any method, as it presumably still stands for "Execution Points" as in Undertale, and none of the player characters ever kill anyone.
    • Party members are visibly still alive when their HP goes into the negatives, just unable to fight. Your SOUL only breaks when everyone is out at once. Revival requires increasing their HP back into positive numbers, which can be done with regular healing items, or by the slow regeneration that KOed allies recieve. A valid strategy then forms in letting a KOed party member stay down for a turn or two to regenerate, then using the healing item so they have a larger buffer against taking another potential knockout.
  • Nothing Exciting Ever Happens Here: Kris and Susie's home town is a small community where everyone knows everyone else. Police Chief Undyne, in particular, seems rather upset that the town is so peaceful.
  • Odd Organ Up Top: In Hometown, the receptionist at the Town Hall has a manicured hand for a head.
  • Paused Interrupt: Notable Aversion, due to being a text box based game. Occasionally Kris will be given an option to answer a question only for someone, usually Susie, to interrupt them anyway. Then there's when Susie interrupts the fanfare when a piece of candy "joins" the party. Both of these examples don't have any pause within them.
  • Player and Protagonist Integration: Building on Undertale, the game continues the implication that the Player Character is literally being controlled by the player (or an in-universe entity that controls them). Not only that, as the game expands to having you control a team, you for a short time leave Kris's perspective to follow a party member that separated from them with a lesser degree of control/guidance.
  • Player Nudge: When you first fight alongside Susie, you'll notice that you can't keep her from attacking enemies. However, there's a "Warn" action that makes every enemy avoid her slashes. When she next joins the party, she immediately wallops one enemy into orbit. Ralsei then directly adresses the need to warn enemies about her, making sure the player can't miss this mechanic. If you've been following a pacifistic conduct, then this scene also serves as a hint that you can't actually kill anyone in battles.
  • Precision F-Strike: Characters' swears are stronger here than in Undertale, most notably Susie infrequently talking about thrashing asses and Rouxls Kaard's infamous "God dammit".
  • Pre Existing Encounters: Unlike the Random Encounters in Undertale, all battles occur from on-field enemies rushing toward you.
  • Railroading: As a contrast to Undertale remembering every choice and changing things based on player decisions, sometimes to a truly dramatic extent, Deltarune goes to great lengths to try and convince the player that their choices do not matter at all.
  • Puzzle Boss: Jevil, should you choose to go for a Pacifist route — your only options are to use spells and items to weaken his attacks and to restore your own HP.
  • Recurring Riff: Just like in Undertale, there are riffs that are used throughout the entire soundtrack, including a few from Undertale itself.
  • Recycled Soundtrack: The theme that plays when a new character joins the group is re-used from Fox's soundtrack for Rose of Winter.
  • Regenerating Health: Downplayed, in that if a party member is K.O.ed, they go into negative HP which slowly recovers with each turn. If you can survive long enough, you don't even need to use an item to revive them — but they'll come back into play with so little HP that one more hit will likely send them deep into the negatives all over again.
  • Respawning Enemies: Going back into a room that you've previously cleared of enemies will have them show up again in the same places, and you will have to fight them again if you cannot escape them. Justified here as reducing HP to 0 is a Non-Lethal K.O., so even in the worst of circumstances, nobody dies.
    • This is also lampshaded if you repeatedly fight the very first Rudinn, with the game's narrative text repeatedly insisting it's a different one each time with incredibly minor (and not visible in the game) differences.
  • Sampling: The song for the create-a-character intro directly samples one of the most famous musical sounds from EarthBound: that weird robotic screeching during the Giygas fight.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Just like in Under Tale, Deltarune has specific references to Falcom's forgotten dungeon crawler series Brandish, particularly the scene where Kris and Susie's falling to the Dark World. [1] references the intro of Brandish 1 where Ares/Varik and Dela/Alexis' fall to the underground ruins [2] while Kris' Dark World form is a direct homage to series hero Ares/Varik's character design.[3]
    • Much like the Onett PD in, again, EarthBound, the local police department — Police Chief Undyne in particular — has the exit to town sealed off with a barricade and police tape for no particular reason.
    • The mechanic used for gaining TP is essentially the graze system from Touhou, complete with a near-identical sound effect.
    • The "Give it a gift" section of the character creation has five options. The first four (Kindness, Mind, Ambition and Bravery) are a pretty clear allusion to the four houses in Harry Potter.
    • One of the stats is "Guts", which is rated by a number of flame icons instead of a number.
    • Kris throwing their SOUL into the birdcage might be a reference to a song called, "Birdhouse In Your Soul".
  • Sigil Spam: The Delta Rune itself appears repeatedly in the Dark World, and the Delta Warriors each have a heart visible on them somewhere. Ralsei has one on his robe from the beginning, and Kris's SOUL manifests as a heart, whereas Susie's belt buckle is heart-shaped. Elements of the Delta Rune can also be seen in Toriel's house, in the school's front door and on the top of the church's tower.
  • Significant Anagram: Explored not only as hints for connections to the previous game, but as a theme.
    • "Deltarune" is an anagram of "Undertale", and like an anagram, characters and the plot set-up are rearranged in a different order.
    • "Kris" and "Ralsei" are both anagrams of "Frisk" (minus the F) and "Asriel", respectively, who they strongly resemble, but have numerous deviations.
    • "Dark" - "Kard"; guess what the chief motif of most enemies and characters from the Dark World is.
  • Spiritual Antithesis: To Undertale, which was all about player choice and the consequences therein, while Deltarune thus far regularly denies the player the privilege of making any meaningful choices..
    • Both games' take on resolving conflicts with violence are also different. All of your opponents in Undertale are Obliviously Evil at best and Tragic Villains at worst, and can eventually be reasoned with peacefully and even befriended. In fact, doing so is the only way to achieve the Golden Ending. The King in Deltarune, however, is undeniably, unwaveringly evil, and even if you've been going for a pacifist playthrough, your attempts to settle matters peacefully nearly get the entire party killed, and the "peaceful resolution" is his son overthrowing him and locking him up, with the lesson learned from the encounter being that sometimes a certain level of violence is necessary.
  • Spiritual Successor: To The Halloween Hack, being another darker take on a prior work, albeit one of Toby Fox's own this time, and one of its most major themes is forced progression. Fittingly, Deltarune's Chapter 1 demo was released on Halloween.
  • Standard Status Effects: The two statuses currently found in the game are Sleep, which works as expected, and Tired, which allows an enemy to be spared with Ralsei's Pacify magic without having to turn their name yellow for a normal spare.
  • Stealth Sequel: Inverted. At first glance, it appears to be a sequel to Undertale's True Pacifist Ending. However, as you get the opportunity to explore the Hometown towards the end of the first chapter, it becomes clear that events simply don't correlate and that the casts of Deltarune aren't the same people as their Undertale counterparts.
  • Suck E. Cheese's: The local "Pezza" parlor seems to be this, complete with employees in mascot suits and a brief reference to a certain other fictional franchise.
  • Surplus Damage Bonus: Damage to player characters can reduce their HP to negative numbers. Reviving them requires enough healing to bring it above zero, thus enemies damaging them more makes them harder to revive.
  • Take That, Audience!: A lot of content in the early game pokes fun at common Fandom-Specific Plots, such as Toriel adopting human children post-game. In a more general note, it examines the common fandom wish for there to be a sequel to Undertale by creating a simultaneous Happy Ending Override and a scenario where the main cast doesn't have the same relationships as in the first game, completely averting one of the main reasons that fans wanted to see a sequel.
  • The Stoic: Unlike your other two party members, Kris doesn't have an extra sprite for being startled by anything.
  • Technical Pacifist: One way you can play the game, since you cannot actually kill anyone. You can just force your way through every enemy encounter with no impact on the plot, since all of the enemies just run away when out of HP. As of the demo, the only differences it makes are that Jevil will reward you with different equipment depending on whether you won violently or nonviolently, and the cutscene with the King changes but still has the same outcome.
  • Universal-Adaptor Cast: Appears to be an example of this. Possibly.

    Chapter 1 
  • Adult Fear:
    • Your child doesn't show up for pick-up after school, and doesn't answer your calls. Toriel is pretty angry before you call them. No one in the very small town in which you live knows where they are, and they are last seen unwillingly going off somewhere with the most violent and antisocial girl in the school.
    • You are divorced, running a failing business because you would rather give away flowers than sell them, and are behind on rent. All you can do is give your child bone-crushing hugs when they visit, though they don't like hugs, and offer them flowers for their mother.
  • Aesop Collateral Damage: After Ralsei heals the King, he's "rewarded" for his efforts by having him, Kris, and Susie being hit with a sucker punch attack that almost kills the trio. After getting help from Lancer and subduing the King, Ralsei realizes that some violent people will never listen to reason no matter how nice you act towards them, thus brute force is the only way to get them to stand down.
  • Already Undone for You: Mentioned early on when Kris and Ralsei complete a puzzle to disarm a bed of spikes, only to find Susie on the other side. When Ralsei wonders how she got past, she responds that she didn't actually solve the puzzle, she just walked right through the spikes.
  • Ambiguous Syntax: "You acknowledge the possibility of pain and seizure." Considering how the first chapter ends, that's probably not an epilepsy warning & probably not referring to anything that may happen to the player.
  • Analogy Backfire: Before entering the Forest Maze, Lancer claims that he knows it "like the back of [his] head." He's not wrong.
  • Ascended Meme: Toriel mentions that Kris and Asriel enjoy playing Super Smashing Fighters, a clear Shout-Out to the Super Smash Bros. franchise. At the time of the release of Deltarune Chapter 1, a popular meme was jokingly claiming that Sans would be confirmed as a character for the then-upcoming Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. The ascension compounds when you realize that Sans tells Kris he'll be busy tomorrow, and Deltarune was released the day prior to the final Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Nintendo Direct, wherein the final character roster (which, of course, does not actually contain any Undertale characters) was revealednote .
  • As You Know...: Several characters (especially Toriel) will talk about a past event with Kris.
  • Attack! Attack! Attack!: Susie's main method of fighting: She'll keep attacking enemies and won't listen to Kris. Fortunately, she gets better during the final dungeon.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Should you make at least three unsuccessful attempts to clear either timed-tile puzzle, Ralsei will offer a hint on how to solve themnote .
  • Armor of Invincibility: The Jevilstail is the most powerful armor in the game, and is acquired by pacifying Jevil. It gives whoever wears it +2 to every stat.
  • Bait-and-Switch: At the beginning, before ending up in the Dark World, Alphys tasks Susie with getting more chalk, and then tasks Kris with making sure she actually gets the chalk. When Kris steps into the hall, we see Susie pull out what appears to be a cigarette... and then she eats it. Turns out, it's a piece of chalk.
  • Bait-and-Switch Comparison: When examining the Susie-shaped hole left in the hedge when she bursts out after the "Create a Machine" sequence, Ralsei gives this gem.
    "It's nice Susie finally found a place she fits in... and she's getting along with Lancer, too!"
  • Big Door:
    • There's a large bunker-style door built into the landscape in the forest to the south of town. Locked, obviously.
    • The door leading into The Field of Hopes and Dreams is even bigger and leagues more ornate.
  • Bookends:
    • One of the earliest rooms in the Dark World is a sequence where you have to escape from Lancer as he fires spade projectiles at you. The area just before the Card Castle features a part where you chase after Lancer as the card army fires diamond projectiles at you.
    • Two of the Spade King's lines are used earlier in the chapter: Lancer's "I'm the bad guy" from when you first meet him, and Susie's "Quiet people piss me off" from the hallway cutscene.
  • Both Sides Have a Point: Ralsei takes a view of complete pacifism, while Susie takes a view of "beat the crap out of everyone." The best course of action appears to be somewhere in-between; Ralsei's way almost gets you killed by the King, while Susie's way causes all sorts of unnecessary problems. At the end, Susie and Ralsei both concede that using their method 100% of the time wasn't working, and that the other's method is sometimes the way to go.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: Defeating the Bonus Boss Jevil earns either the Devilsknife weapon (if defeated with brute force) or the Jevilstail armor (if defeated non-lethally). Naturally, these are the best in their respective categories, and Jevil is the demo's hardest enemy. At least they can be used on the final boss.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • One of the encounters can be resolved peacefully by getting Ralsei to sing a lullaby, which also puts Susie to sleep. This later turns out to be the key to peacefully resolving the fight with Susie and Lancer. It comes up again in one of two outcomes to the King's fight, where Susie notes that while she can't take the King down, Ralsei can.
      Susie: I'd never forget something I made fun of you for.
    • Similarly, Susie attacks automatically during the first battle with Lancer (who can't be killed), which is an early hint to the player that Susie attacks on her own and you'll have to prevent her from doing damage if you want a pacifist run.
    • A red stain can be found on the floor of Kris's bedroom and the birdcage next to it is described to have "survived many crashes", indicating this isn't the first time Kris has had their SOUL bloodily ripped from their body.
  • Chess Motifs: To a smaller extent than Playing Card Motifs, but they're there. There's an area that looks like a chessboard, complete with pawn-like enemies attacking you.
  • Chromatic Arrangement: The main three characters, Kris, Susie, and Ralsei, form this in the Dark World, with Kris being blue, Ralsei being green, and Susie being reddish-pink.
  • Cliffhanger: The first chapter ends with Kris (unprompted) pulling out their/the player's SOUL, shoving it in a cage, and drawing a knife, at which point Kris's eyes glow red like Frisk's do after finishing a Pacifist run with a previously beaten Genocide playthrough back in Undertale.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Catty and Bratty are both annoyed at each other for "copying" each other's actions when they run into each other, rather than realizing they have common interests.
  • Composite Character:
    • Lancer appears to be this for most of the initially-bad guy cast of Undertale, possessing a Sans-like color scheme, Papyrus's kid-brother nature and general enthusiasm for "evil," and Alphys's emotional attachment to the Big Bad.
    • The King is one of both Asgore and Flowey, inheriting the former's position and the latter's sociopathy and Machiavellian beliefs.
  • Controllable Helplessness:
    • In the final scene, you can control the SOUL while it's in the birdcage. It won't change the outcome.
    • The fight between Susie and Lancer provides an unusual variation. It occurs while Kris and Ralsei are imprisoned, so they aren't able to stop Susie from relentlessly attacking Lancer. However, the player can still control the SOUL... until Lancer stops letting his attacks hit entirely, much like Toriel in the previous game, meaning the player has to endure the beatdown while either dodging or deliberately getting hit until Susie holds back on her final attack.
  • The Coup: Lancer launches a coup d'état to overthrow his father and save the Lightners at the end of the game. How it turns out is the only event of consequence you can affect; if you've been a pacifist, the other Darkners side with Lancer and imprison the King, otherwise they side with the King and Lancer is forced to hold them off as you make a hasty exit.
  • Creepy Circus Music: The Circus, playing appropriately in the jester boss Jevil's room. The subsequent battle theme has elements of this as well.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: Discussed after Lancer sics a group of three Hathys on the heroes; he wonders why the heroes won the battle so easily, and Ralsei tells him that it's because he stuck a bunch of support monsters together and included no enemies with aggressive attack patterns (when a Hathy is accompanied by any other monster, their attack becomes a circle of bullets that limits movement but will never hit the SOUL if it's in the middle).
  • Dark Reprise: "Card Castle", and "Chaos King" take Lancer's cheery theme song and warp it into something much more dramatic and dark. Meanwhile, "Vs. Susie" mashes it up with Susie's theme to create something tragic and melancholic.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: In stark contrast to Undertale, where reducing enemies' HP to 0 invariably results in them being Killed Off for Real, in Chapter 1 of Deltarune, battles never end lethally, and no matter whether you resolve the conflict by force or ACTing, the result is always almost exactly the same, causing the battle against Susie and Lancer to end in this, should you choose to beat them using violence.
  • Deranged Animation:
    • Burgerpants is back, and his expressions are even crazier than before.
    • Berdly gives him a run for his money, as the more smug he gets, the more distorted his portrait becomes.
  • Do Not Spoil This Ending:
    • The game's website advised people not to talk about it until a day after its initial release on October 31, 2018.
    • After the 24 hours were up, Toby on his Twitter thanked everyone who didn't spoil the game, and for those who did, he says he understands... because he was waiting to talk about it for six years.
  • 11th-Hour Superpower: As with the last game, talking with the King is useless, and trying to with any of the characters only changes the talk command to these.
    • Letting Kris talk gives you Courage, an ability which raises defense for a turn. It's also the only time Kris uses up TP aside from the Bonus Boss.
    • Making Susie talk gives you Red Buster, which deals a lot of damage.
    • Lastly, Ralsei's talk gives you Dual Heal, which is a full party heal.
  • Everybody Lives: Enforced. Even if you go out of your way to beat encounters by force, enemies just get knocked off-screen. Contrast with Undertale and its infamous Genocide/No Mercy route.
  • Evolving Title Screen: After you beat the game and it closes itself, restarting shows Ralsei's legend as the intro and provides a new background for the file select screen.
  • Exact Words: Lancer's dialogue before Kris and Ralsei enter the forest maze provides a crafty example: He'll say that he knows the forest like the back of his head, which inattentive players will likely read as “the back of his hand.” And once the player enters the maze and sees Lancer going down a certain path, they will then act on the misinterpreted information and tail him, only to find out that he actually doesn't know anything about the forest (which his dialogue hinted at).
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Susie's hair is wild and covers her eyes, symbolizing her wild and violent outcast vibe. After the fight with the King, it's cut to reveal her eyes, and she becomes a lot more expressive and open with her emotions from them on.
  • The Faceless: All main characters are this, or have a Face Framed in Shadow. Them revealing their faces is usually a big deal.
  • False Reassurance: Without any given context, the last lyric of "Don't Forget" can sound either like genuine reassurance or a threat.
    Don't forget, I'm with you in the dark.
  • Fantasy Keepsake: The "Ball of Junk" item found in the inventory after leaving the Dark World is implied to be made of items Kris acquired there (having at least one Dark Candy while leaving even makes the game mention of it smelling like scratch'n'sniff marshmallow stickers). The "Use" command prompts Kris to look at the ball in admiration, likely reminiscing about their adventures in the Dark World. When told to drop it they express hesitation to do so, and then extreme bitterness when successfully pressured.
  • Fisher Kingdom: Kris and Susie's outfits change when they fall into the dark world. Kris also becomes more blue in appearance, while Susie becomes more pink.
  • Foil:
    • Ralsei to Susie: The former is gentle, knowledgeable, and polite, while the latter is anything but. They also contrast physically, with Ralsei being a scrawny Squishy Wizard, and Susie being an imposing Magically Inept Fighter. Their predominant colors are also inversions of each other — Ralsei's green to Susie's purple. Downplayed once Susie's Character Development sets in, however.
    • The King to Undertale's Asgore. Both are the rulers of a monster-inhabited domain, both have a son, both are the final or semifinal obstacles blocking the way back to the surface, and both are the only battles in the game that you are required to FIGHT. The differences between them are that Asgore was a beloved and softhearted king, while the King is a tyrant who mistreats his subjects and even threatens to kill his own son. In addition, Asgore had no desire to kill the protagonist and gives up after his defeat, whereas the King seems that way at first, but swiftly pulls an I Surrender, Suckers against the party that would've worked if it hadn't been for either Lancer or Ralsei.
    • Seam to the shopkeepers in Undertale. Undertale's shopkeepers were nice fellows, with the exception of Burgerpants and had hope in their king Asgore freeing them. Seam doesn't seem to have high hopes for the future of the world.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • When Toriel drives Kris to school, they pass by Undyne, who's missing her Eyepatch of Power. This is one of the earlier hints that the game is an elseworld setting instead of being a straight sequel.
    • On the walk home, talking to numerous characters heavily hints that something is up with Kris. Numerous people refer to them as "creepy", or "quiet", and Noelle notes that they're usually quite distant from others. They can't play piano as well as usual, according to the hospital nurse, and many people they talk to note that it's unusual for them to see Kris at all. Come The Stinger, the game implies that Kris may be possessed by the player a la the first game.
      • Further foreshadowing this is the ability to respond to characters in the epilogue as if this was still the first game when it is a separate universe, such as referencing Alphys to Undyne or acting like you know Sans. These are things that the character would not know, but the player would. In any other game, this would seem to be a simple Mythology Gag, but since this is sometimes considered a sequel to Undertale, the fact that the player is speaking through the player character is cause for a great deal of alarm.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: The Delta Warriors, plus Lancer.
    • Kris is Phlegmatic.
    • Susie is Choleric.
    • Ralsei is Melancholic.
    • Lancer is Sanguine.
  • Freudian Trio: Kris (Ego), Susie (Id), and Ralsei (Superego).
  • Friendless Background:
    • Kris doesn't have many friends among their classmates, even if they're on good terms.
    • Onionsan here has no friends. Kris has the option of becoming their very first friend.
    • Mettaton and Papyrus, of all people, are implied to have this.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration:
    • The player choosing Ralsei's actions is an expression of Kris, the leader, telling him what to do. Conversely, Susie is too hot-blooded and violent to listen, meaning that she always attacks each turn and the player isn't even given an action menu for her. After her Character Development, however, she becomes more open to nonviolent solutions and listening to Kris, allowing the player to choose her actions from then on.
    • Ralsei's Pacify magic puts any enemy to sleep as long as they're already tired. The final fight makes the King weary, and in the non-pacifist ending, Ralsei takes advantage of this after the King's I Surrender, Suckers.
  • The Ghost: Besides the Greater-Scope Villain(s), two characters are mentioned but never make it onscreen. For one, there's the Mayor of Hometown, whom you are prevented from seeing (as you're just a kid). All we hear is that she's female and noncharismatic but competent enough to keep getting reelected. Also, Asgore's overdue rent notice is signed by a mysterious "C.".
  • GIS Syndrome: Played for Laughs with the stock image of a carton of almond milk that K. Round uses to restore its health in the second battle with it. A stock explosion GIF is also used when Susie and Lancer blow up the machine you designed for them.
  • Good Morning, Crono: The game begins with Toriel waking Kris up for school and opening the blinds to let the sunlight in.
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • The aftermath of the fight with the King changes depending on how much violence you used in the game. However, you can still get the neutral ending even if you've been playing mostly as a pacifist. This is because while Susie was in your party and unable to be controlled, you have to use your first turn in fights to warn enemies so they can avoid her attacks. This is something that is very easy to overlook.
    • The three Broken Keys needed in their repaired state to reach Jevil. One is behind a puzzle the player encountered late in the Field area that proclaims it's near-impossible to solve without answers from the Card Castle (though that hasn't stopped players from brute-forcing it within minutes anyway), and another is on an invisible and unmarked path in the Forest. These can be stumbled upon by inquisitive players — but the third key can only be gained if the player checks the ????? Cell, accepts finding the key, and then asks Seam, the first shopkeep, about it.
    • The in-game descriptions of the Choco Diamond and Hearts Donut only say that their healing varies, with no specifics. The game doesn't tell you that the amount of health they restore varies depending on which character you heal with them.
  • He Knows About Timed Hits: Ralsei makes direct reference to interface elements and controls as part of his tutorial-giver role. This leads to an amusing moment in the first block puzzle, as Susie lacks such awareness.
    Susie: (Who the hell is "[Z]"?)
  • Heroic Willpower: The trio demonstrates this after the final boss battle. Despite the Spade King suckerpunching all three at once, Kris steps in front of Susie and blocks the blow. The Spade King then knocks Kris away and plans to make their death painful; Susie returns the favor and shoots him in the back. Then in the neutral-violent run, Ralsei casts a sleeping spell.
  • Hypocritical Heartwarming: Susie threatened to beat up Kris for being too quiet, though it was more likely over Kris catching her stealing the chalk. When the King taunts Kris for being quiet before planning to kill them, also saying how "Quiet people piss me off," Susie shoots him In the Back and says, "Get away. From my. Friend."
  • Hypocritical Humor: If you try to buy from Susie and Lancer's bake sale stall while completely broke, they admonish you for being irresponsible with your money, which they bet was wasted on pastries. This is after they've offered to sell you a cookie to get the funding for their "evil plans".
  • Infinity +1 Sword: The Devilsknife is the most powerful weapon in the game, and is acquired by defeating Jevil. It gives Susie +5 Attack and +4 Magic and lowers the TP cost of Rude Buster by 10.
  • Internal Homage: Susie's solo fight against Lancer parallels the first game's fight against Toriel in a number of ways. In both cases, the foe is a family member of the king that guards the protagonist's way back home, and they're trying to prevent the protagonist from meeting the king in order to avoid bloodshed. Once the fight goes on for long enough, the foe starts attacking exclusively by dropping projectiles from above that are guaranteed to miss, showing their reluctance to fight someone they'd started growing close to.
  • Ironic Echo: Lancer's 'I'm the bad guy' line is echoed by King just before you fight him.
    King: To my people, I'm a hero. To you? I'M THE BAD GUY!
  • I Surrender, Suckers: After the fight, the King pretends to have a Heel–Face Turn to get Ralsei to heal him...then, once he's back at full health and power, he turns around and beats your party to within an inch of your collective lives.
  • Joined Your Party:
    • Ruthlessly Parodied. Ralsei prompts a message to appear when Susie joins the party for the first time, after which she tries to walk at a distance such that no one can tell she's associated... and a message pops up informing you of that with exact same fanfare, albeit warped. The same message and fanfare return when Lancer joins the party. And then when they get a piece of candy. At this point, Susie has enough and cuts it off.
    • Later on, when you're escaping the prison and Susie promises to try being more cooperative, a short piano jingle plays with the message "Susie joined the party for real".
  • Karmic Jackpot: Upon getting the Broken Cake repaired, it becomes a powerful healing item which restores a whopping 160 HP to your entire party. Because of this, especially on pacifist runs, it's Too Awesome to Use. Alternatively, you can give it to the chef you met early on who baked the cake in the first place who will give you a more-reasonable item which heals 80 HP to the party. Even better, he offers to replace it every time you consume it or something else happens to it. However you can use the Top Cake for the Jevil fight when everyone is either low or down.
  • Lighter and Softer: This chapter has a lighter tone than the whole of Undertale. The game mechanics are more focused on solving puzzles and befriending enemies than fighting, and no one can die, even if you DO decide to attack all your enemies.
  • Meaningful Echo: The phrase "Quiet people piss me off" is used twice in the first chapter. One is used as a Establishing Character Moment for Susie. The other time, it's used by King and acts as a catalyst for Susie fully completing her Heel–Face Turn.
  • Medium Awareness: Seam specifies how his name is pronounced, which is only necessary to do in text. This suggests that he can see the text, which has interesting implications considering with whom he is associated.
  • Meta Twist:
    • Of course it wouldn't make sense for Kris to assume that Undyne would know anything about Alphys, or to claim that they've met Sans before. But they'd be perfectly reasonable assumptions for the player to make if they've come into the game having played Undertale.
    • The King pulling an I Surrender, Suckers on the party, especially if he is defeated without attacking him. In Undertale, most bosses that cease fighting the player character have genuinely turned around and try to befriend them. Anyone expecting King to undergo something similar (even though he turns against his own son prior) will be taken off guard when it turns out he really is the Hate Sink evil ruler he's built up to be and nearly finishes off the gang after tricking Ralsei into healing him. Also worth noting is that the very same tactic can be employed by the player against certain bosses in Undertale.
  • Monster Clown: The Bonus Boss, Jevil, who is a jester devil who also represents the joker in a deck of playing cards.
  • Multiple Endings: Heavily downplayed compared to Undertale. While killing enemies is impossible, acting violently enough changes how the battle against the King ends, with Ralsei putting him to sleep. If this is not the case, Lancer leads a huge mob that overthrows and imprisons the King.
  • Multiple Head Case: Clover, a three-headed (and thus both Club-suit and shamrock-shaped) hydra, whose three heads make complete statements, but in different moods for each part. One is dere, one is tsun, and one is just practical.
  • Mythology Gag: In the alleyway, behind Alphys, there's graffiti of Every Man, one of Reaper Bird's attacks. What this means is anyone's guess.
  • Nap-Inducing Speak:
    • When first dealing with Susie's tendency to wallop everything in front of her, Ralsei offers to compromise by telling Susie that she can weaken enemies so that they become Tired and that he can put them to sleep with Pacify. Susie snarks that just listening to Ralsei is making her tired.
    • Lecturing a Rudinn in battle will cause it to become Tired. Trying to convince a Rudinn Ranger has the same effect, as does reading Ralsei's manual to several enemy types.
  • Nice, Mean, and In-Between:
    • Kris, Susie, and Ralsei form a trio like this. Ralsei is the nice one, being the most pacifistic, gentle, polite, and affectionate of the three, even to his enemies; Susie is the mean one, being rude, brash, aggressive, and cruel (at least at first); and Kris is the in-between one, since they are stoic and because you control their actions.
    • Clover's three heads also count: one is cheerful and friendly, one is abrasive, and one is a Shrinking Violet who tries to be nonconfrontational.
  • "No. Just... No" Reaction: If Susie is ordered to flirt with an enemy, her response is "Annnnnnnnnd hell no." After failing miserably the first time, she flat-out refuses to do it again and delegates the ACT to Ralsei and then Kris on subsequent uses.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • Toriel and Asgore still had a falling-out in the past, but this time, what actually caused it isn't explained.
    • When Ralsei tries to get Susie to compliment enemies, he suggests saying things that she wishes people would say to her. Her attempts include things like "You are unbanned from Free Ham Sandwich Day" and "Please keep body tackling the soda machine."
    • Kris apparently did some interesting things in their past. Some are described by the residents of Hometown, while others, such as hiding under Noelle's bed to scare her and putting a bath bomb in the toilet, only get a mention, leaving the details to the player's imagination.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: After returning from the Dark World, the player can wander around Hometown and talk to the NPCs. Some of the residents imply that Kris isn't acting like themselves. Noelle comments on how Kris is more talkative than usual, her dad Rudolph implies Kris has forgotten things that they should know, the hospital clerk comments on how Kris isn't normally so bad at playing piano, and in general, Kris seems a lot less "creepy" to the townspeople.
  • Or Was It a Dream?: After arriving at the fountain, Kris and Susie find themselves back at the school, in a room with a chess board, playing cards, and some toys that look like the characters they encountered. But both of them remember what happened, and it's left ambiguous as to whether it really was just a dream or not.
    • If you have the Spooky Sword equipped, your "weapon" upon leaving the dark world will be the Halloween Pencil, leading to more questions.
  • Pacifist Run: Enforced. Since reducing enemies' HP to 0 does not kill them, whether a playthrough is "pacifist" or not depends on if you resolve battles peacefully or through non-lethal force. Consequently, doing one or the other has much less of an impact on the story than in Undertale. Even if you consider non-lethal beatdowns to be a Genocide Run, a certain miniboss is outright impossible to bring to 0 HP, killing any possible violent runs of the game then and there.
  • Playable Epilogue: Two. The first one happens after you defeat King but if you choose to return before shutting off the fountain. You can only go back to the throne room, but with the exception of Seam and a few of the minor NPCs, everyone comes to say goodbye to Kris and Susie (although this happens when you play peacefully, a violent run means Kris and Susie have to leave immediately). The second is after they arrive back from the Dark World, as Kris can explore Hometown before going home.
  • Playing Card Motifs: Most of the chapter focuses on the King, his son, and his troops which represent the various card suits. Susie and Kris later wake up in a classroom full of knocked-over cards.
  • Production Foreshadowing: There's a doll on the shelves in Seam's shop that looks like Yoki, the protagonist of Temmie's 2020 game Dweller's Empty Path.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: All the enemies you encounter save for Jevil and the King. Lots of flavor text is things like "All hail the man who pays us" and "I need to make rent this month," and you even encounter a Rudinn who says he's on break and isn't going to fight you until he's back on the clock.
  • Red Herring: A lot of the plot details are set up in a similar fashion to the previous game, only to subvert expectations.
    • Susie threatens Kris early on and is a berserker who attacks monsters on sight and doesn't care about the quest she's nominally on, much like a No Mercy run from the previous game, but she refrains from killing anyone and ultimately makes a Heel–Face Turn.
    • Lancer is similar in both a recurring antagonist role and has a skeletal appearance with a blue color scheme, which might lead players to believe he has a connection with Sans and Papyrus from the previous game; he and his father turn out to just be Darkners who resemble skeletons and have no apparent connection with Sans and Papyrus at all.
    • A mysterious doorframe appears early on and savvy players might expect them to tie into Gaster as they did in the previous game. They end up being a fast travel system.
    • A library book starts with the author pleading to whoever is reading it not to forget their name. One might assume it was written by Gaster, but it was actually Heats Flamesman, known here as Hots Fireguy.
    • Lastly, there's Lancer's dad, the King, who might look like a Suspiciously Similar Substitute for Asgore, right down to one of the people close to him trying to persuade both you and him not to fight (Undyne for Asgore, Lancer for the King). However, when you actually encounter the King, not only does he threaten to throw Lancer off a roof if the Lightners don't kneel before him, he also tricks Ralsei into refreshing him so he has them at his mercy again. He ends up being put to sleep by Susie via Ralsei's pacify spell, or being captured by Lancer when he turns his own troops on him.
  • Rhyming with Itself: When you ask the TP Master about gaining TP, he rhymes the word "bullets" with itself.
    TP Master: You get TP when you DEFEND. Protect yourself, then cast SPELLs, friend. You also get TP by getting close to bullets. Look for the heart outline when you get close to bullets.
    Susie: You rhymed "bullets" with "bullets."
    TP Master: B-because it's important!
  • Route Boss: Subverted. At one point, Susie and Lancer will have you make a machine for them to use against you, and you are given options on what type of machine it is (you can even make it a duck). However, when you finally confront your creation, Susie and Lancer blow it up and fight you themselves.
  • Running Gag:
  • Sequel Hook: Many plot elements are brought up to be covered in later chapters.
    • To the south of the town is a locked door that's overgrown with plants.
    • During the King's fight, he rants about how he's acting on behalf of "The Knight".
    • If you follow the Jevil sidequest plot to its conclusion, mentions of The Queen are made, as well as Seam describing the event that drove Jevil insane as "Dark yet Darker", adding even heavier implications to Gaster's presence in the future story.
    • The Stinger raises a lot of questions about Kris, and what exactly is in control of them.
    • Despite the prologue telling you how meaningless your choices were, your save still has the name you put in, not "Kris".
  • Sequence Breaking: Downplayed; Ralsei will be amazed if you interact with the hidden tree in forest before solving the puzzle that lets you see it.
  • Shall I Repeat That?: Parodied. Saying "no" when asked if your choices during the character creation were honest causes the game to proceed regardless rather than starting over like in other games.
  • Shoot the Medic First: Ralsei is almost guaranteed to die first during harder battles, such as the one against Jevil, which is a bit of a problem given that he heals the party and that his Pacify is the only way to end that boss fight if you're doing it the pacifist way. This is probably just a result of Ralsei's awful health and defenses that make him statistically the most likely to go down first.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Toriel asks Kris about the game they and Asriel used to play, asking if it was called Super Smashing Fighters, and mentions how Asriel liked "the green lizard," referencing Yoshi. And for a triple whammy of references, she then talks about how Asriel hated "that book about eating green eggs" after his father cooked some eggs that were decorated to look like Yoshi's eggs.
    • Lancer's declaration that "he's the bad guy."
    • One of Kris's neighbors is an overly friendly male purple cat who seems to be very chummy towards Kris and refers to them as Douglas. He's also standing in front of a broken grill.
    • One of Lancer's threats to the party is to smash them into blood. He pulls out a bucket as part of this threat, to keep the blood from making a mess on the floor. Naturally, because of his Playing Card Motif, the bucket has a spade inscribed onto its side.
    • Among other stats, the "Machine to Thrash Your Own Ass" can be rated on "gun's".
    • If one talks to Rouxls Kaard after starting his first puzzle, he will verbatim quote I. M. Meen. The dialogue after completing his second puzzle ("Can we see it?" "No.") references the "steamed hams" meme.
    • When Burgerpants talks about his fellow pizzeria employees, he mentions a "Purple Guy" and wonders if he even works there.
    • Alphys will try to give you her 28-season DVD collection of "The Symptons", a sitcom about a middle-class monster family.
    • The way the song title is shown when you enter the Field is similar in style to the Touhou games. The song in question is clearly inspired by Touhou music as well.
    • In one of its flavor texts, Rudinn states that it has no strong opinions one way or the other.
    • The Forest Maze section (named as such if you save the game there) is a Super Mario RPG reference, complete with following the other characters to find your way through — or, in this case, to find the wrong way through.
    • In certain areas, you'll be treated to some pitch-bendy sine wave ambience that resembles the kind you would hear in EarthBound.
    • While battling an enemy, one of your party members will "make something spin around", in reference to the Mad Duck's equally vague description of their Mana Burn ability.
    • The sounds that play when K. Round grows and shrinks are the Expies of the ones used by Mario upon using and losing a power-up.
    • Kris' Dark World outfit gives them iron armor and a cape, which alongside their Hidden Eyes creates a likeness to Ares/Varik.
    • The name of the battle theme, "Rude Buster," appears to be a homage to a PC-98 Shoot 'em Up game titled "Rude Breaker."
    • After Susie joins your party, the dialogue box states "Susie joined your party for real" may be a shout out to Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, which has almost the exact same set up with a party member in that game.
  • So Long, and Thanks for All the Gear: When Susie leaves the party after the first fight with K. Round, she takes her armors with her if she has any equipped (you can't remove or replace her axe before she leaves). When you fight her and Lancer later on, her Check description will note that she has greater defense thanks to the armor you gave her. You regain access to whatever she has equipped once she permanently joins in the Card Castle.
  • Spiritual Successor: To The Halloween Hack. Both games were made by Toby Fox, both with the theme of choice and whether said choices matter or not (The Halloween Hack has Varrick break free of the narrator's given choices, while Deltarune has Kris seemingly break free from the player's control at the end. Both feature traipsing through a normal town before The Reveal of something more sinister hidden within. Finally, both games have you play as a non-emotive knight that is hinted to be someone else from their prequel games (Ness for Varrick and Chara for Kris.
  • Spoiled by the Manual: Lampshaded; the unused assets for the manual Ralsei gives you lists the controls for the overworld, menus, text... and (not-actually-in-the-game) cooking, with three of the four buttons corresponding to "butter" and the final one being used for "pulsar cannons."
  • Stealth Pun:
    • Alphys sets out milk in a saucer at night, notices it disappearing, and though she never actually observes what's drinking it, she'd like to imagine there's a cat responsible. A cat that may or may not exist due to being unobserved: Schrödinger's Cat, perhaps?
    • When Jevil challenges the party to a battle, Susie boasts that he'll be "dealing with a couple of sharks". Being in the Card Kingdom, this might be a reference to "card sharks", a term used to describe skillful or deceitful poker players.
  • Strike Me Down with All of Your Hatred: After the fight against the King, he dares Susie to kill him and prove to Lancer that she's a (figurative) monster, once and for all. Fortunately, thanks to either Lancer or Ralsei's intervention, she doesn't have to.
  • Sudden Downer Ending: At the chapter's end, Kris changes in disposition, imprisons the SOUL, brandishes a knife, and flashes a Slasher Smile.
  • Symbol Swearing: Susie's choice of name for the team is apparently pretty darn rude, but the game only displays a random series of punctuation (and it really does seem to be random, differing from game to game and even sentence to sentence). Apparently Lancer's dad would be upset at Lancer for merely hearing the word.
  • The Tape Knew You Would Say That: When you encounter the first block puzzle, Ralsei tries to read the rules, only to find that they've been vandalized by Rouxls Kaard. He complains that vandalism is against the rules before reading the next line of writing left by Rouxls, which claims that he makes his own rules.
  • Tastes Like Friendship: Called out by name when Susie lets Lancer have the candy he helped her get. When she asks what that tastes like, Lancer says it tastes "like [his] teeth are disintegrating".
  • Terms of Endangerment: Lancer seems to be trying for this—he calls Ralsei "you sweet little pumpkin" and "you delicious little apple"—but as usual, it fails to be threatning in any way.
  • Too Awesome to Use:
    • You only get two Revive Mints (which revive a fallen party member with full health) across the Card Kingdom with no way to get any more. Naturally, you'll want to save them for the fights with King and Jevil.
    • The Top Cake is the best healing item in the chapter, healing the whole party for more than their maximum HP. However, you can only get one by repairing the Broken Cake, so that usage needs to count. For those not willing to commit, try giving the Top Cake back to the chef who made it. He rewards you with a Spin Cake, which is half as effective but can be replenished infinitely by talking to the chef.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Salsa for Lancer. He and Susie are seen munching on some salsa he stashed away in a hollow tree stump, and he's dug a ton of holes and stuffed them with salsa in his room in the Card Castle.
  • Training Dummy: Like in Undertale, the first battle encounter is a dummy, crafted by and resembling Ralsei to teach Kris various skills. If you repeatedly attack it, Ralsei wonders what this says about your feelings towards him, and you can also hug it, or hug Ralsei.
  • Universal-Adaptor Cast: Most of the returning characters are used this way, with their broad personalities being kept but details being shuffled around.
  • Vendor Trash: The Glowshard picked up near the beginning has little practical use, but can be sold for a decent sum of money. Its one use is for sparing a Rudinn, but given that Rudinns are among the most basic enemies in the game, it doesn't amount to much.
  • Violence Is the Only Option: In the battle against the King, no matter what you do, trying to talk him down will ultimately have no effect, as while he stops fighting due to becoming tired (by weathering his attacks) or by his injuries (by attacking him), he pretends that he has been talked down by the party, and convinces Ralsei to heal him, whereupon he attacks again. Either way, he isn't killed, but the fact is that he never would have listened to reason.
  • Visual Pun: K. Round is a checkers piece. It gets stronger when it gets crowned.
  • Wham Line: There are quite a few that could count.
    • One not from the game itself, but rather from the Twitter account, which was hacked by the Voice in the lead-up to the demo's surprise release, clueing fans in to who exactly they are (possibly) dealing with:
    • From the character creation screen, players expecting this to be a choice-driven game like Undertale receive their first big shock as the game reveals its true colors:
      YOUR WONDERFUL CREATION...will now be discarded. No one can choose who they are in this world.
    • While on the way to the school, Toriel drops a line which is the first real indicator that this is not the same universe as the original game.
      Toriel: I hope it stays this way when Asriel visits next week.
    • One of the most casual involves you walking up to Undyne and asking her about Alphys, with her response being:
      Undyne: Alphys? Who's Alphys? No idea who you're talking about.
  • Wham Shot:
    • When the game was first released, the very first shot of the game proper is when Toriel wakes you up, revealing that this is a follow-up to Undertale and not just a survey program. Of course, now this is a Late-Arrival Spoiler.
    • Ralsei removing his hat and hood at the end, revealing that he looks a lot like Asriel. Judging by Susie's reaction, this is one both in and out of universe.
    • Right at the end of Chapter 1. Kris is tossing and turning in the middle of the night, when they jump out of bed and start walking around very slowly. They then stop in the middle of the room and pull their own SOUL out of their body, before throwing it into the birdcage from earlier. They then turn their head around slowly, revealing Chara's trademark smile and glowing red eye, before materializing a knife out of nowhere. Anyone who's played Undertale (so most of the people playing this game, as it was recommended to those who already played Undertale) should have some very horrific guesses about what this means.
    • The implications aren't yet clear, but enter the "Librarby", and you'll find an NPC who looks very similar to a Gaster follower from Undertale in full color. If you speak to them, they cryptically mention a book upstairs, which you cannot access.
  • What the Hell, Player?: Played for Laughs with the "Create a Machine to Thrash Your Own Ass" sequence. The duck parts all have negative descriptors informing you that picking those parts will make you lose points. After choosing all three parts, instead of the program asking you if you wish to confirm your machine choice, it asks you, "Your machine sucks ass. Is that OK?"
  • Whole Plot Reference:
    • The Card Kingdom, enigmatically, appears to be this for a neutral/pacifist run of Undertale. To wit: our main characters fall down a hole into another world in the underground, where they meet a kindly royal goat who advocates pacifist action against mostly goofy, light-hearted enemies. The player slowly wins over (or tries to murder) the monster populace while making friends with a quirky, entirely harmless subordinate to the enemy king. At last, our two main characters reach the final area, where they face off against the king in their most morally difficult fight thus far. Afterwards, the player is allowed to go back through a few hallways, wishing goodbye to all the friends they made over their journey. They even get to meet Asriel at the end!
    • Susie's arc in the first chapter is clearly meant to echo a neutral run player of Undertale. She begins her adventure in the Card Kingdom like a regular RPG, rejecting the Toriel stand-in as being no fun and deciding to devote herself to "the bad guy." This leads her to bond with the Papyrus stand-in, who she can't bring herself to kill when finally afforded the opportunity. She then tries to turn herself around as a more pacifistic player who is still willing to fight when no other option can be reached.
    • The prophecy Ralsei tells to Kris and Susie is both an Internal Homage to Undertale as well as Final Fantasy, one of the founders of the RPG genre.
    • The first chapter also forms an analogue to Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass — an even more explicit one than Undertale, which itself had definite shades of it. Falling into a wacky kingdom where things don't work as they do in the real world. Crossing a giant chessboard at one point. Playing card themes, along with sundry other classic board games. Hapless royalty. It-was-all-a-dream-or-was-it ending. Deltarune even railroads the characters in much the same way as Alice's choices don't seem to matter much in her adventures.
  • Would Hurt a Child: The King grabs Lancer's throat when he finds out that they let the heroes get away.
  • Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe: Exaggerated with Rouxls Kaard, who seldom makes it three words without misapplying some archaism.
  • Year Inside, Hour Outside: Averted. Susie and Kris enter the Dark Kingdom, and it takes several hours for them in-game to help Ralsei defeat the Spade King and turn on the Dark Fountain. By the time they leave, school has long ended and Toriel is frantic since Kris wasn't there for pickup.
  • You All Look Familiar: Lampshaded for the second K.Round battle. Ralsei keeps insisting that this one looks distinct and unique, which makes Susie constantly object that it looks exactly identical to the first one.
  • You Know What You Did: We don't know what Asgore did that caused Toriel to leave him, since as far as we know he didn't kill six children as he did in Undertale. All we know is Toriel glares at his Apology Gift bouquets and mutters the proper place for them is in the trash.
  • Your Mom:
    • Sans slyly tells Kris that he already "befriended" their mom last night. She came in to the store to buy chocolate kisses.
    • Berdly tells Kris that if they don't go after Susie, they'll have to partner with their mom for the project again. Given that this is Berdly, it's almost certainly intended to be insulting.

    Chapter 2 
  • Asleep in Class: Berdly reading a book in class causes Kris to fall asleep. By the time Kris wakes up, everyone else in class has left. Dialogue from Alphys confirms that Kris falling asleep in class is a regular occurrence, though they usually only sleep through the first part of class.
  • Bait-and-Switch:
    • As Susie and Kris prepare to investigate if the closet really does lead to the Dark World, Noelle approaches them. It seems that she will join in on the fun. Susie and Kris quickly make up an excuse, and Noelle stammers to Kris that she wants to meet Susie at the library before making her exit.
    • Toriel screams out a Big "NO!" during the opening when she sees a knife. The way the text is framed, it appears as if Kris is stabbing their mother with a knife. However, Kris is in bed the whole time; Toriel screamed because Kris ate all of the pie from the fridge when she told them not to do that.
  • Big "NO!": The footage shown on the sixth anniversary stream has Toriel scream out one of these during the opening when she sees a knife. However, it's because Kris ate all of the pie from the fridge when she told them not to do that.
  • Covert Pervert: Implied with Asriel; Kris finds one of Asriel's library books, on How to Draw Dragons. The cover has "suggestive poses" and Kris comments that their brother probably won't return it.
  • Empty Shell: Implied. When looking at the mirror in Kris's house in the sixth anniversary stream footage, the text has changed from "it's only you" to "it's what they call 'you'". With the ending of Chapter 1 having Kris rip the SOUL out of their chest, it's implied to be the case.
  • Entertainingly Wrong: In the sixth anniversary stream footage, Susie notices that Noelle was nervous, blushing, and hoping to do homework together. Susie slowly builds up to the conclusion that Noelle must be onto their secret identities. The thought that Noelle might like Susie never occurs to her.
  • Face Palm: Toriel does this when she finds out that Kris ate all of the pie she was saving, complete with a loud slap sound effect when she does.
  • I Need to Go Iron My Dog: In the sixth anniversary stream footage, Noelle walks up to Kris and Susie before they enter into the closet. When Susie asks for help coming up with a lie, the choices are between "hanging out alone in the closet" and "crime". Either way, Susie awkwardly stammers over her words in order to convince Noelle to leave.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Susie comments that waiting to go into the Dark World again "felt like years", referencing the three-year gap between Chapter 1 and Chapter 2's release.
  • Oblivious to Love: Susie almost realizes that Noelle has a crush on her when she sees how nervous she is when approaching them at the closet, but ends up concluding that she knows about their Dark World adventures.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: Downplayed. Alphys notes that Susie showed up on time for class, which is unusual for her. It's actually because Susie was so excited about what happened in the Dark World that she immediately wanted to go back.
  • Poke the Poodle: After Chapter 1 ended with a very unnerving cliffhanger of Kris ripping their SOUL out, flashing a Slasher Smile at the player and manifesting a knife threateningly, it turns out all they did with it was get into the pie Toriel baked the previous night.
  • Self-Deprecation: The sixth anniversary stream footage shows Kris inspecting a folder on Asriel's computer that contains "a poorly-drawn design for a game". The final boss has giant rainbow wings, and the narration comments that the game probably never saw the light of day. Toby Fox's design process involves poorly-drawn sketches, the final boss of his last game has giant rainbow wings, and his games have definitely seen the light of day.
  • Shout-Out: The passage of the book Berdly reads in class begins with the first two lines of A Tale of Two Cities: "it was the best of times, it was the worst of times".
  • That Was Not a Dream: A positive example: when Susie and Kris talk about the Dark World, Susie expresses worry that their adventure the previous day may not have really happened. If it didn't happen, then did that mean they didn't become friends? And if that is the case, can she and Kris still be friends in the real world? After Noelle leaves, the closet turns into the Entrance to the Dark World, and the duo happily jumps in to continue their adventures with Ralsei.

Will now be discarded.

Don't forget, I'm with you in the dark.


Video Example(s):



After a fierce boss battle between the Lightners and the ruthless King of the Card Castle, the King surrenders. He claims to be worn out from battle and eager to befriend the heroes. Once Ralsei heals him, however, he proceeds to strike the Lightners again, making it clear he only wanted to let their guard down.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (14 votes)

Example of:

Main / ISurrenderSuckers

Media sources:

Main / ISurrenderSuckers