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Videogame / Road Not Taken

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Road Not Taken is a 2D Roguelike Block Puzzle game by Spry Fox. You play as a mysterious hooded Ranger who comes to a town where children keep getting lost in the forest. Every winter, you must journey into the woods and rescue the kids, while collecting power-ups and avoiding enemies. In between missions, you can chat with the townsfolk, give them presents in exchange for power-ups, and even romance them if you like.

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This game provides examples of:

  • All of the Other Reindeer: The Archer alludes to being an outcast amongst the townsfolk.
  • Apathetic Citizens: Who are incapable of rescuing their own kids.
  • Artificial Stupidity: If a villager gives you a present, you can give it right back to them and it'll still improve your friendship.
  • Bittersweet Ending: In the best endings, you still die, but at least you have a spouse to mourn for you.
  • Combat Tentacles: Squids have tentacles that pop up in random places on the map.
  • Crapsaccharine World: It's a very cute little town where children routinely freeze to death because they're searching for berries that are used to make the rich citizens immortal.
  • Deadly Euphemism: You "retire" after 15 years as a Ranger. In actuality, you die, and there's nothing you can do to avoid it.
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  • Elemental Embodiment: Flame Spirits and Light Spirits. They won't attack you, but damage you if you bumble into them.
  • Fake Ultimate Mook: Giant Bears are quite harmless and will even give you honey if you throw them.
  • Final Death: Though you do keep some of your power-ups and all of your secrets discovered thus far.
  • Giant Spider: Except they're called Baby Spiders. One wonders what the adult ones look like...
  • Girlish Pigtails: The Maiden has these.
  • Immortality Immorality: The berries extend life, but only grow in the winter, hence why children keep freezing to death while in search of them.
  • Infant Immortality: Very averted. Kids will die if you fail to rescue them, and if a spider gets ahold of one and you're too slow, the kid will turn into a Stock Femur Bone right before your eyes.
  • In the Hood: The Ranger keeps his hood up until one of his townsfolk friends asks him to take it off, so they can see what he looks like.
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  • Invulnerable Civilians: The Nymph and the Hunter just hang out in the forest and never get attacked.
  • Item Crafting: You can create useful items and clear the board of annoyances at the same time.
  • Lonely Rich Kid: The Prodigy gives this impression, reading lots of books and angsting about his parents.
  • Marry Them All: You can marry more than one villager at a time, and they'll live in your house together and be perfectly fine with it.
  • Mook Bouncer: Hawks, Daemon Bunnaes, and Mimic Trees will all randomly teleport you to another screen.
  • My Biological Clock Is Ticking: The Maiden is very keen to get married and have kids, and describes you as her last chance.
  • Nemean Skinning: The Archer wears a bunny skin on her head.
  • Older Than They Look: Most of the villagers, thanks to the berries.
  • Personal Space Invader: Lodestones are magnetic. They don't damage you, but they'll stick to you at the least convenient moments.
  • Randomly Generated Levels: And each one is a puzzle.
  • Relationship Values: Each villager has a relationship bar.
  • Savage Setpiece: Raccoons are passive unless you throw them. Then they'll make your life unbearable.
  • Stepford Smiler: All the townsfolk are cheery people hiding dark secrets, family tragedy, and unfulfilled dreams.
  • Surprise Creepy: Talk to the villagers enough, and you'll uncover plenty of it.
  • Technical Pacifist: You can't attack anyone directly, but you can toss enemies around to neutralize them.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: The Archer and the Maiden, respectively.
  • Upper-Class Twit: The Prodigy is rich and very unworldly.
  • Wallet of Holding: You can store several live rabbits in there.
  • Warp Whistle: You can teleport from any puzzle room back to the Mayor.
  • We Have Reserves: Every time the Ranger dies, a new Ranger comes to take his place.
    • This also applies to the children. If you fail to rescue them all, the Mayor casually observes that they can always "make more."
  • White Mask of Doom: The Doctor wears one that looks like the bird masks of medieval plague doctors.

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