Little Misfortune is a Point-and-Click Adventure Game developed by Killmonday, the makers of Fran Bow, and released September 18th of 2019 for PC through Steam. It is an interactive story, focused on exploration and characters, both sweet and dark, where your choices have consequences.
Starring Misfortune Ramirez Hernandez, an imaginative 8-year-old, who seeks the prize of Eternal Happiness, as a gift to her Mommy. Led by her new friend, Mr. Voice, they venture into the woods, where mysteries are unraveled and a little bit of bad luck unfolds.
The this game contains the following tropes:
- Action Survivor: Misfortune survives a great deal of physical trauma that should have caused her grievous injury, likely due to her ability to cause misfortune to others while staying mainly clear of it herself. Subverted in the end game, where it's reveal that Misfortune has been dead the entire game, making it no wonder how she survived so many incidents.
- Artsy Beret: Misfortune is a creative child who is introduced doing arts and crafts, and so she also wears a pink beret, even indoors.
- Big Damn Heroes: Benjamin saving Misfortune from Morgo's realm.
- Bittersweet Ending: The Somewhere Else ending. Misfortune comes to terms with the fact that she's dead and escapes Morgo, and she's able to cross over to a "somewhere else" that, despite spooky appearances, seems much nicer. But this means she has to leave her old life behind (with her mother in tears over her death) and multiple other children, including her friend Hiro, have already been lost. It's a little bit sweeter in the Good Ending where you put glitter on everything you can: Misfortune's mother at least receives the happiness that Misfortune wished to give her. In the last shot of the game, she takes off her mask and smiles through her tears.
- Blatant Lies: The moment when Mr. Voice realizes that Misfortune heard his narration:Mr. Voice: The sad part is... Today is the day she will die.Misfortune: I can hear you, you know... <...> What did you say about me dying today?Mr. Voice: Die? No! Nobody said anything about anyone dying today.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Mr. Voice does it a few times when he wishes to share information with the player about the game - although, if he's not careful, Misfortune can often hear him.
Hello Diary! My Daddy hit Mommy. Is it supposed to be normal? Should I hit people I love? It doesn't feel right.
- Misfortune can show Mr. Voice (and by extension, the player) her pink-covered diary, which is written in blue ink and illustrated with color pencil drawings. It writes both about her warm feelings about Benjamin the Fox (who may or may not be real), and about her parents' arguments, which are sadly very real.
- Much later Misfortune gets the opportunity to read Benjamin's diary, and from its contents learns more about the game she's playing and Mr. Voice.
- Dissonant Serenity: Much like in Fran Bow before her, Misfortune's reactions to some of the deeply disturbing things she sees around her tend to be mildly perturbed at worst, rather than the genuine horror that one would consider to be a "normal" response. This is partially due to her young age, and partially due to her own innate weirdness.
- Eldritch Location: The Ultra-Reality, which appears in this game both as a reference to Fran Bow, and is implied to be where the entire game takes place. In particular, Morgo is suggested to exist somewhere deep within "The Beyond," an uncharted area of the Ultra-reality that exists between Misfortune's world and ours.
- Foreshadowing: Two notable ones for The Reveal that Misfortune was Dead All Along:
- In the very beginning of the game, when Misfortune is leaving her home to follow Mr. Voice's quest, she pauses in the middle of the road for quite a while, and has a brief flash to the Ultrareality while standing in the exact spot where her body lies in the end game.
- Toward the very end of the game, Misfortune finds Benjamin's bag, which contains a list of situations in which Protectors must intervene and save the souls of potential victims. One situation listed is when the victim is dead already, and doesn't know it.
- "Groundhog Day" Loop: Mr. Voice tries to do this to Misfortune when she starts fighting back against him in her house, trying to restart the opening with her playing with glitter and getting angry when she doesn't follow the script. Given how even in the beginning (before the point where she's shown to have died) Misfortune had flashes to the way that the house looked in the finale, it's entirely possible Mr. Voice succeeded in this before and that Misfortune was already reliving the day she died when the game started.
- Interactive Narrator: The narrator of this story is an active participant in Misfortune's story, and is the one who gives her the quest "Do exactly what I say and you'll win Eternal Happiness". It turns out that he's actually the Big Bad as well, as he's created this "game" to feed off of her.
- Interspecies Romance: Oddly enough, Misfortune has a crush on Benjamin the fox. One optional dialogue has her swooning about how muscular he must be after noticing that he chops wood at his house.
- Not the Fall That Kills You: Lampshaded by Misfortune after she manages to get the crow to release her and she free falls back down to the docks. Justified, since her dress acted as a sort of parachute to slow her fall.
- The Jinx: A minor plot point; Misfortune notes that bad things seem to happen around her a lot. Her intro plays this Up to Eleven: clouds form around her and strike buildings with lightning, satellites fall from the sky to hit furry creatures, crows drop dead in her presence, and of course, her parents are forced into a miserable unwanted marriage because of her existence. This becomes more dialed back as the game progresses, and some of the bad things that happen are in fact revealed to be Morgo's doing, not hers.
- Last Day to Live: The narrator has made it clear that the game takes place on the day Misfortune dies. Unfortunately for him, Misfortune can hear him. Even more unfortunately, Misfortune did indeed die on that day, and very early into it—she just wasn't aware.
- Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Downplayed. The female Misfortune and male Mr. Voice are the two most central characters, and they get pink and blue subtitles for their dialogue, respectively.
- Prone to Vomiting: Misfortune vomits as a response to various player choices.
- The Reveal: Misfortune was Dead All Along. She died crossing the street in the very beginning of the game, and simply wasn't aware of it due to Morgo's influence.
- Rewatch Bonus: The narrator's seeming trick question "have you ever heard this question before?" gets a lot more meaningful with the the reveal that he's able to "reset" Misfortune's day to when they meet while she's in his power.
- Running Gag:
- Misfortune tripping and falling down. Becomes poignant later when she convinces herself to get up and keep going after she learns the truth about Mr. Voice, because she always had before.
- Mr. Voice getting upset at Misfortune cursing and telling her to watch her language.
- Mr. Voice giving Misfortune objects to help her in her quest, throwing them to her from offscreen after she asks where they are. One of these occasions, he sends her the object—a shovel—seemingly from hell, foreshadowing his true nature. Misfortune never notices that he's the one giving them to her.
- Stepford Smiler: The entire town of Openfields, of a type where they literally wear masks advertised to help someone look happy when they're actually miserable. Everyone in town wears a mask, likely because of the sheer amount of missing children in the town. Misfortune's own mother advises Misfortune to always smile and pretend to be happy even when she's sad, and Misfortune can admit to Mr. Voice that she's tired of faking being happy.
- The '90s: A newspaper is dated October 11, 1993.
- Title Drop: A sorrowful one at the end where Misfortune acknowledges that she was her mother's "little misfortune" right before she leaves with Benjamin.
- Toilet Humor: While employing her "ninja skills" and climbing through a hole in the wall, Misfortune starts farting. She tells her butt to be quiet because this is supposed to be a ninja mission.
- Unreliable Narrator: Taken to its logical extreme - the narrator's word can't be trusted because he's been lying to Misfortune about everything in order to keep her trapped in his realm. Ironically, the only thing he is truthful about is Misfortune's upcoming death, and he relays this to the player, not to Misfortune herself.