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Video Game / Golden Light

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"I wonder how that must be. To be together forever...yet always apart.

Welcome to the Meat Zone

Golden Light is a 2020 3D Survival Horror Roguelite game by Mr. Pink. After a long period of Early Access on Steam, the full version was released in early March of 2022, though the developers have said they may add additional content to it later.

The player is on a picnic date with his girlfriend, when suddenly a meaty hole in the ground opens and swallows her. The player leaps into the hole themselves to rescue her, and must now find their way through the labyrinthine corridors of The Gut, using whatever tools they can find and their wits to stay alive among the many strange, meaty things down there...


This meat contains examples of:

  • Ambushing Enemy:
    • Hangers will hang from the ceiling and attack you when you walk under them.
    • Dors disguise themselves as false doors and bite you when you walk past, inflicting bleeding.
  • Anti-Debuff: If you join a Cult (the skull-headed piles of meat), you gain immunity to whatever debuff they're hanging out in. This can be incredibly useful, but it's also very expensive (and you'll probably be subjected to the debuff as you walk into them in order to join).
  • Body Horror: Most of the Memento powerups involve things like gaining extra fingers to disarm traps, covering your skin in burn scar tissue to get increased defense, or growing a toothed meaty growth on your nose that auto-attacks enemies (and allies). Fortunately most of these effects aren't actually visible.
  • Breakable Weapons: All weapons have durability that will drain when they're used. Once completely broken, the weapon is useless, except as food. Durability can be restored either with a repair item or by paying Huggs.
  • Chest Monster:
    • Meaters, which disguise themselves as pick-ups. If you see a pickup moving along the ground on its own, do not approach!
    • Blank Pages look like the numerous pieces of paper scattered about, but will attack you if picked up.
  • Damage-Sponge Boss: Castle, the boss of Floor -18, has been known to outlast the weapons used to harm him.
  • Damsel in Distress: She is the reason the player enters the Gut, and She is helpless inside it as it does... whatever it is that it's doing to Her.
  • Death Trap: The game is filled with them, and the player must be careful to avoid and recognize them. Traps affect enemies as well though, and it's common for a wandering enemy to blunder into a trap and set everything on fire (or similar) unexpectedly. In fact, deliberately leading enemies into traps is a viable strategy for getting rid of them (which doesn't count as you killing the enemy).
  • Department of Redundancy Department: The flavor text for throwing an explosive item is "Explosions have exploded".
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Lots of elements in the Gut imply its some kind of World of Symbolism. As just one example, there's a lot of sexual imagery: one of the Cults is named after the "Golden Phallus", there is a boss weapon called the Fire Phallus which is self-explanatory, many enemies are completely naked, the shopkeeper named "Huggs" can become enraged and chase after you in an attempt to hug you to death, and the giant hand that comes out of nowhere to set up the mannequin you place Her parts on does so in a manner undeniably similar to the sexual act of fingering. One of the endings implies that She cheated on the protagonist at some point, which may be where these anxieties are coming from.
  • Dungeon Bypass:
    • Locked doors exist in some areas, but since the keys you collect are for the level exit, there's no way to open them... aside from just taking a weapon and smashing the door down.
    • Certain walls can be destroyed, which reveals the meaty reality of what the Gut truly is and potentially opens new passages.
  • Dynamic Difficulty: The more things you harm, the harder things will get, with more enemies spawning and NPC's charging higher prices. On the other hand, difficulty decreases whenever you are hurt, die, or if you sacrifice gold to the Golden Tree in the Field.
  • Eldritch Location: The Gut, which constantly rearranges itself and mimics artificial landscapes despite being made of meat. The Field as well: it has many different entrances to different areas of the Gut, some going up, some going down; a meaty, eyeball-filled caricature of the player's room; a giant golden tree; and a talking skull attached to a bike that plays music.
  • Encounter Bait: One item effect is to attract monsters. Throw it to attract them to that location. Eat it to attract them to you.
  • Eye Scream: The Eye Takers will sometimes remove one of your eyes when they attack, rendering the left edge of the screen dark. You can also willingly sacrifice and eye to a statue of She on certain occasions. Losing an eye causes the Eye Takers to become non-hostile and start speaking with you.
  • Gainax Ending: Several of them, in fact! Upon clearing the bottom of the Insides and entering the White Door, the protagonist is greeted with one of three scenes that depict She in some kind of mosaic depending on what ending they got- either taking care of a baby that the protagonist can take the place of, in the middle of violent coitus with another man, or chopped to pieces and strewn about. Then the game ends. The player can also access two secret endings by digging too far away from the game world when down in the Gut or by paying Val a whopping 1000 gold.
  • Genius Loci: The Gut. It's a huge labyrinth made of meat mimicking other objects that constantly shifts and rearranges itself. It can speak, and it also likes to absorb people into itself out of what seems to be a twisted form of love, and it may or may not be messing with the player's memory.
  • Healing Herb: There are occasionally patches of flowers in the levels, which will heal you if you stand in them. Notable for being one of the few things apparently not made of meat.
  • Healing Shiv: Any weapon with the "regeneration" status effect. You can hit or shoot yourself with them to gain Regeneration (though you'll still take damage from the initial hit).
  • Hub Level: The Field, which you visit whenever you die or defeat a boss. It is filled with mushrooms (some hostile) and entrances to the various levels, as well as some NPC's that can make things easier... or harder...
  • Hyperactive Metabolism: The easiest way to recover health is to eat your weapon... or a recovery item (if you can figure out which item is the healing one).
  • Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels:
  • Infinity +1 Sword: You can obtain Castle's sword, the Crowdhand... once. It has very high durability and absolutely insane damage output. But if you break it, or die while holding it, it's gone forever.
  • Kill It with Fire: The Fire Phallus is a boss weapon dropped by the Gut Divers and functions like a biomechanical flamethrower. Due to the way that fire interacts with the environment and its powerful damage-over-time capabilities, the Fire Phallus proves to be one of the most powerful but also most chaotic weapons in general. It has the ability to light up a third of the map in flames, killing everything in its kill perimeters. Unless you want to really piss off the Gut, it is best to reserve the weapon against powerful enemies or bosses.
  • Level-Map Display: You get one dead map at the very start of a new game or very rarely as a weapon in the Field, but if you lose it, you'll have to rely on the living (and stuck to the walls) maps randomly scattered around levels. You could take one of those maps with you, but you'll have to kill it first...
  • Living Weapon: Like most everything else, the weapons you pick up are (or were) alive. Dead weapons have a 25% damage penalty, while living weapons will also inflict a secondary status effect.
  • Metallic Motifs: Gold plays a big role in the game. It's the most common pickup you'll find, and all the meat objects seem to be partially made of gold as well. Friendly NPC's will demand gold for their services (implied to not necessarily be for its monetary value), and Snout even says there's something about the gold found in the Gut that allows everything to live.
  • Mind Screw: An advertised part of the game, which tells you that you will "doubt your own mind".
    • Whenever a new level loads, the player will be deposited in a small room (usually a bedroom) with either She saying random things or notes on the ground while distorted, mournful music plays. These are implied to be the player character's memories, but the utter lack of context makes interpreting them nebulous. And sometimes you can play checkers for extra gold.
    • You can find distorted statues of Her, some looking identical to a living person, others made of some kind of stone. She is able to speak through them despite... well, not actually being there. She is the only person in the Gut this seems to apply to.
  • Mr. Exposition: Snout will take this role if you speak to him, providing a lot of flavor text about the Gut and its inhabitants.
  • Neutral No Longer: If a normally friendly NPC takes damage, it may start attacking you... even if you're not the one who damaged it.
  • No Name Given: The player's girlfriend is only referred to as "She" or "Her". Lampshaded by Snout, who mentions how weird it is that you call Her that, and declares he'll simply call you "You" in turn.
  • Our Monsters Are Weird: Most of them are mimics (mobile piles of books, cabinets, houseplants, etc.) that turn into giant screaming piles of meat if you get too close. Then you also have windows that grow heads and arms and attack, doors that bite you, disembodied legs, huge kamikaze sword blades, bouncing heads with crab legs that beg you to kill them, and so forth...
  • Pacifist Run: Entirely possible, but difficult. Changes made to the overall game makes it very possible for the player to totally skip most conflict, including fighting any of the bosses, by not killing anything directly (leading enemies into traps and letting them kill each other is totally fine). This leads to a unique ending.
  • Phallic Weapon: With a name like Fire Phallus, this flamethrower leaves little to imagine...
  • Sequence Breaking: There is an intended order for the player to explore, but if you find an entrance to lower floors early, nothing is stopping you from using it. Lower levels are more dangerous, but also have stronger weapons. The final level, however, can only be accessed after collecting all of Her parts.
  • Sound-Coded for Your Convenience: Listening to your environment is critical. Enemies will sometimes make random loud noises while idle, and all creatures in the Gut breathe loudly and heavily, so even if you can't see them you'll know one is nearby. Certain enemies and bosses have unique passive noises so you can always tell when they are coming.
  • Status Effects: Some are standard RPG fare, and others are not. All statuses can affect enemies, and even bosses, just like the player.
    • Poison: slowly drains health, but will not actually kill you.
    • Bleeding: slowly drains health, and will actually kill you.
    • Fire: rapidly drains health, but can be put out by running.
    • Rust: causes weapons to lose durability much more quickly (for enemies, it weakens their attack power).
    • Paralyze: Massively reduces your speed for about 5 seconds.
    • Regeneration: slowly regain health.
    • Love: renders you unable to attack.
    • Gold Hunger: drains your gold. If you have no gold, drains your health instead.
    • Bone Shiver: drains your health unless you are constantly running.
  • Stealth-Based Game: It is repeatedly suggested that you avoid combat if at all possible. Most enemies can be hidden from and sneaked around, and weapons are usually scarce. Further, the game gets harder the more things you kill.
  • Surreal Horror: The enemies are all constructs made of meat (and gold) that happen to look like ordinary household features or horrifically deformed humanoids. The powerups are as horrifying as they are useful. Weapons are alive, and may make demands of you or hurt you just for picking them up. Nobody's dialogue makes much sense. And the entire area is alive and claims that it loves you, even as you make your way down deeper into ever more dangerous areas looking for your love's dismembered body parts.
  • Talking Weapon: Some of the living weapons can talk. Those that can will inflict status effects on you as well as your enemies, and may even demand payment for you to pick them up.
  • Universal Ammunition: Averted. All guns have completely different types of ammo and none are interchangeable.
  • We Can Rebuild Him: After clearing the first set of levels, it turns out that She has been cut apart, and each boss has a piece of Her body with them. Despite this, She is still alive, and Snout assures you that thanks to the gold found everywhere in the Gut, She won't die despite her condition, and if you can gather all the pieces of Her body, you can put Her back together and save Her.
  • What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: With the bizarre and surreal landscapes, to the nightmarish and abstract monster designs, to speech patterns being broken, to the nonsensical and difficult-to-understand-plot and items that are borderline grotesque. If you show a non-fan of Golden Light its gameplay, they may think the creator was high on shrooms.
  • Yet Another Stupid Death: You can hit yourself with your own weapons. Also, eating items that you don't know what they do can be unwise:
    I eat the meat apple. It was a grenade!
    I eat the fat lips. It had a fire in it. I'm burning!
  • You No Take Candle: A lot of the game's text is... off in its grammar. This helps to reinforce the bizarre and not-normal atmosphere of the Gut.