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Video Game / The Halloween Hack

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Toby Fox'snote  Halloween Hack, also known as "Press the B Button, Stupid!" is an award-winning ROM hack Fan Sequel of the 1994 cult classic RPG EarthBound. It was released in 2008, under Fox's old internet alias of Radiation.

The story starts off several months after the end of EarthBound. An anachronistic Bounty Hunter named Varik (of Brandish fame) is hired by ex-mayor B. H. Pirkle, now campaigning on a law & order platform, to track down a mysterious creature who mutilated and ate a little girl's parents in Twoson. Along the way, he encounters increasingly horrible things as the adventure takes him all the way to Winters. This isn't your average Halloween game, though — its content is comparable to games like Silent Hill and Yume Nikki. This is easily one of the most disturbing EarthBound hacks to come out... well, ever, really.

Nowadays, Toby Fox himself isn't too enthused about the project in hindsight, having publicly admitted to regarding it as somewhat of an Old Shame that he wouldn't seriously recommend anyone to play (though he is also quite aware that this probably won't stop curious people from seeking it out). Nevertheless, the hack remains quite interesting, as it contains quite a few story elements and themes that Fox would expand and refine upon in his later, more professional endeavors Undertale and Deltarune.


You can find out more about it here as well as download it. You'll have to search out your own ROM though or extract one from a cartridge yourself, as per-wiki policy. Also, "the_ally235" on the Forums has taken it upon themselves to touch up areas of the game, such as fixing graphical issues, adding a new title screen, and all around adding more polish to the original hack. If you're interested, his efforts can be found here.

For a much Lighter and Softer EarthBound Halloween Hack alternative, see Hallow's End.


This hack provides examples of:

  • '90s Anti-Hero: Varik is made to look like this, what with being a brooding, alcoholic bounty hunter with a Dark and Troubled Past. We quickly find out this is not played straight at all — his stats suck, and he's honestly scared of the undead monsters.
  • Absurdly High Level Cap: Like EarthBound, levels go up to 99. However, by the time you reach the Final Boss, the party should be around anywhere between the late 10s and mid-20s at most, even with Level Grinding.
  • Absurdly-Spacious Sewer: The Twoson Sewers are covered in hippies and rats. And then they take you all the way across the ocean to Winters, where the water is replaced with blood, the hippies become zombies, and blobs and roaches join the fray.
  • Adaptational Villainy: In EarthBound (1994), Dr. Andonuts is an eccentric inventor, ally to the main cast, and Jeff's father. Here, he's an insane and depraved villain.
  • Alternate Timeline: This game is set after the end of EarthBound, but the Chosen Four didn't return since they were sent to a timeline created when Giygas was killed in the past. Dr. Andonuts went mad with grief because he thought he killed them.
  • Alternate Universe: It seems to begin this way, as an alternate reality in which the Chosen Four won but seemingly died defeating Giygas. It turns out that this reality is the original, and the Chosen Four were sent to a new timeline. It's just that everyone thinks they're dead.
  • And I Must Scream:
    • One of the citizens of Dr. Andonuts' Magicant invokes this by telling you that they're all doomed to repeat the same action over and over again.
    • The Id practically begs the player to leave them alone amidst a slow five-note background track, attempting to influence the player's sympathy by describing in vivid detail just how wretched their situation has become. What makes this more frightening is that to most people, the Id is seen to represent desire and instinct, and plays a key role in emotion such as happiness and anger. To see Andonuts's Id so beaten down and depressed is jarring indeed.
      Id: look at my giant, disgusting body
      isn't this punishment enough
      why must you hunt me down
      leave me alone
  • Animate Body Parts: Dearkhart, the Anxiety Attack enemies, and NO, NO, and NO.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification:
    • Dearkhart represents the hatred that Dr. Andounts assumes Jeff has for him.
    • The NO trio represents Dr. Andonuts' homosexuality. Notably, you can choose to run away or fight them for the experience. The game progresses the same way, leaving what consequence defeating the NO Trio actually causes up to the player's imagination.
    • Phaze Destrotur represents Dr. Andonuts' guilt over the "deaths" of the Chosen Four.
  • Anticlimax: Played for Laughs with the "good" ending. After beating the Final Boss, Varik returns to the lab and finds Dr. Andonuts dead inside his machine. He shrugs the whole thing off and goes home to get drunk and find some chicks. BUT THEN A GHOAST POOTS ON HIM!
  • Arc Words: Variants of, "This is all a bad dream," at least for the pre-Magicant segment. It returns for the Final Boss if you die, where the narrator says this before trapping you in the game over screen endlessly.
  • Barrier Change Boss: The Final Boss does this with his second and third forms. To deal with his powerful attacks in these forms, the guide recommends you copy him by using a mechanic completely unnecessary in the original game: changing equipment mid-battle.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: In Dr. Andonuts' mind, where they fight his personal demons as well as the doctor himself.
  • Beef Gate:
    • Technically, it is possible to sneak past all the Demonic Spiders in Magicant without doing any of the memory echo realms. It's just a very unwise idea to do. However, you can get some really good equipment from it earlier than you're intended to if you do so, the Sword of Kings being one of them. (Which Varik himself can equip, although it's a point weaker than the rapier if you went out of your way to get it early on.)
    • There's also a major difference between when you can enter the sewers and when you should enter the sewers. Additionally, there's a major difference between when you can attempt to traverse through Darker and Edgier Winters and when you should attempt it.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The "good" ending. Dr. Andonuts dies and Varik is kicked out of his Magicant, but Andonuts dies in agony and torment, still thinking he killed his own son. The monsters have been stopped, and Varik is returned to Twoson, having grown into a competent and brave bounty hunter.
  • Blob Monster: The Evil Ecto, which looks like a Palette Swap of the Soul Consuming Flames. They're blobs of ectoplasm, which means they're basically ghosts. They have a creepy yell and can Mind Rape Varik with Brainshock Alpha.
  • Body Horror:
  • Bounty Hunter: Varik is hired by B.H. Pirkle to kill the "monster."
  • Broken Aesop: Dr. Andonuts and the narration itself try to shame the player for attacking the poor insane wretch the scientist has become. Never mind that he is creating murderous monsters to kill all life. If you murder him without bothering to enter his mind, the game treats it as a bad ending in which Varik died or went insane. But even if you enter his mind, you can't get him to recover and you just end up killing him anyway.
  • The Cameo: Varik is the main character from Brandish.note  A song from Brandish's sequel, named "Synchronicity", is remixed in the game's soundtrack.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Apple Kid mentions he hasn't heard from Dr. Andonuts since Giygas was defeated. Guess who's responsible for all the monsters?
  • Cluster F-Bomb: After "The Reason You Suck" Speech Dr. Andonuts delivers before fighting you as the Final Boss, he proceeds to tell you he'll shove your ass so far down your throat that when you crap you'll sing fucking Beethoven. EXACTLY that.note 
  • Continuity Nod:
  • Contrasting Sequel Main Character: According to Radiation, he changed Ness, the baseball-hatted teenage protagonist of EarthBound, into Varik, a mysterious, shadowy-faced medieval bounty hunter. This serves to alienate the player from the idea of the EarthBound theme, and set a darker mood.
  • Creepy Cockroach: The Preemptive Scavenger is a Palette Swap of the Violent Roach. The Preemptive Scavenger is creepier because it looks rotten.
  • Cut His Heart Out with a Spoon:
    • Just in case you feel like the confrontation with Andonuts is too downbeat. It's probably one of the most-quoted JRPG lines in recent memory.
      You little fuckers are going to have your bodies ripped in half.
      I'm going to shove your asses so far down your throats that when you crap, you'll sing fucking Beethoven."
    • He also does the following boast when switching to fire attacks.
      I'm going to burn you to such a crisp
      Your ashes will scream for water!
  • Developer's Foresight:
    • If you actually manage to make it all the way to the Peaceful Rest Valley entrance, you'll find it blocked by a rock with an angry note from Brick Road.
    • Similarly, if you somehow manage to get all the way to Onett without getting completely flattened by the enemies along the way, you'll find it blocked off by Onett's famous police force, and the nearby house has an NPC that lampshades that, no, there's no super powerful weapon or equipment you'll get for making it past all those enemies. Though, you do find a present with a nice hat in it along the way which blocks the effects of Whiteshock.
  • Did Not Do the Bloody Research: Assuming Dr. Andonuts is a native Foggylander (which is the equivalent of the United Kingdom in the EarthBound verse), it seems weird that he would use the word "fag" as an insult rather than a cigarette.
  • Downer Ending: If you press A when it tells you to kill the monster. Even though Dr. Andonuts was going to die in the "good" ending anyway, the game mocks you for being a puppet. That, and Varik was implied to have died, too.
  • Early Game Hell: Much like in EarthBound, the early game is rather brutal even if you go out of your way to grind for better equips and unlock Varik's magic. The sewers will quickly swarm you with enemies that easily overpower you or stun Varik, and since he's the only character you have at the time, it's incredibly easy to get stun-locked into oblivion. Even when you get past it, the enemies in Winters can easily wipe you out due to their high attack power and, due to a combination of Varik having low PP and inventory space, the best chance of getting through it is to avoid most of them if you can. Once you get to Magicant and start getting more party members, things start to get decidedly easier… in certain aspects, at any rate.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The whole game is packed full of them, both enemies and bosses alike, starting when Varik enters deep in the heart of Twoson's sewers.
  • Everything's Deader with Zombies: Zombie hippies (the Overrecycled) and Starmen (the Remnants) in particular.
  • Evil Knockoff: The Transdimension Terminate Mook. It looks like Ness' robot from the very end of EarthBound and can cast Lightning Alpha every turn.
  • Eye Scream:
    "NO attempted to rip your eyes out of their sockets!"
  • Fake Difficulty:
    • Despite the fact that the hack intends for you to use status PSI as much as possible in battles if you want to survive, Varik barely gets any PP in order to effectively make use of this. At most, you may be able to get use of one, maybe two status PSI before his PP runs out, in a game that likes to get spam happy with monsters that can easily overpower the group otherwise. This usually means several tedious turns of using PSI magnet to drain PP and get back to full, only to make minimal progress and have to resort to this tactic again.
    • The sewer might as well be one giant Luck-Based Mission, especially considering you only get one character at the time. You get swarmed in groups of three/four enemies that like to stun-lock you, and in large groups you'll be lucky to get even a single turn in as the group stun-locks you to a slow and painful death. Your only real hope of making it through is trying to despawn enemies, which is hard since the sewer water slows down your movements considerably, and enemies like to spawn on top of you as you transfer through doors.
  • Fan Sequel: The Halloween Hack takes place in one of Earthbound's offshoot timelines.
  • Felony Misdemeanor:
    "I didn't wash my hands!" ("Character KO'd" sound)
  • Flesh-Eating Zombie: The Monster and the Uberhaunt enemies. Both have sprites with blood dripping from their hands and mouths, implying that they eat flesh. Word of God said that one of the Monster enemies was the one who killed and ate the Rosemaries in the beginning of the game.
  • Forced Level-Grinding: If you're planning on making it through the Twoson Sewers, then later to Andonuts' lab, and then through the memory areas in Andonuts' Magicant, you're going to do a fair bit of level grinding just before said areas, even if you're smart enough to know the status spells aren't useless.
  • Genre Shift: Turns the game's original upbeat mood of light-hearted, courageous adventure into that of a fearful, psychologically warped tale based on the willingness of game players to fulfill what they are obligated to do, even when it goes against their wishes. According to Radiation:
    "It was born of a combination of many things I had been thinking about at the time — the lack of non-stereotypical, major homosexual characters in media, the staleness of a fifteen-year-old video game, the player's consciousness of their own decisions in video games, and the fact that it seemed that most people generally thought I was just 'another funny guy.'"
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: Dr. Andonuts, upon coming to the false conclusion that the Chosen Four are dead or trapped in the past.
  • Gorn: Twoson Sewers Part 2 in particular, but everything from there on features some degree of gorn.
  • Groin Attack:
    • One of the three "NO!" bosses is a crotch and as an enemy, it needs to be beaten.
    • One of Dr. Andonuts's Attacks is to jed the entire party in the crotch enormously hard. This attack can poison the party and is harming Paula as much as it harms Varik, Jeff and Poo, if not more so considering her Glass Cannon status. note 
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • At one point, you're presented with a choice that appears to only have one real option, and that option just gives you a Downer Ending.note 
    • However, it's played straight in trying to figure out what enemies count as undead (to use Timestop on) and what don't (for using Sleepstun on), especially since figuring that out is critical because you need the Useless Useful Spells to have a chance of beating this game. There are quite a few enemies that look like they should count as undead but instead technically count as living, as well as there being quite a few that look like they count as living but count as undead, and considering Varik doesn't have a high PP stat for all his status effects, you'll likely only be able to get one status off per battle if you don't stock up on PP restoring items. Better hope you make the right choice.
  • Hard Levels, Easy Bosses: For all the Demonic Spiders and Goddamn Bats populating the areas of the game, the bosses tend to be far easier by comparison, thanks to usually only fighting one of them at a time instead of being swarmed by enemies and the fact that the Useless Useful Spells aren't useless against them. If a boss is weak to Sleepstun, it's not too hard to lock him into a pattern of keeping him asleep, and if a boss is weak to Timestop, they're as good as dead, really.
  • Hell Is That Noise: The background music for the Evil Ecto battle is just a single groaning sound played over and over again. Several other songs from the original Earthbound that were only meant for brief disturbing scenes have been repurposed as battle music, too.
  • Hope Spot: Dr. Andonuts becomes determined to recover from his madness as his past is explored. Sadly, it doesn't end well.
  • Humanoid Alien: In the concept art for this hack, the Giegue League is actually based on a doodle Radiation drew, and it's kind of a parody of itself so to speak. Giegue League resembles Giygas before his breakdown, which is fitting for a custom ROM hack foe.
  • Informed Flaw:
  • Intended Audience Reaction: Radiation made the beginning of this game charming and humorous, wanting you to think it was just another Arn's Winter Quest. He also made the Twoson enemies simple, goofy palette swaps to make you think he was lazy. It makes the "Wham Level" that much better.
  • Interface Screw: The B-button pressing.
  • Journey to the Center of the Mind: If the player presses the B Button during a certain important event, Varik enters Dr. Andonuts's mind and discovers the reasoning behind his insanity.
  • Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: Dr. Andonuts didn't take the fact that the chosen four never returned from the past in this timeline well at all.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: If you examine the Halloween Candy item, it'll tell you that it comes in Cinnamon Crap, Grape Gasoline, Cherry Chafe, and Mint. Mint is very disgusting, according to the narration.
  • Laughing Mad: The narrator engages in non-stop, game-ending laughing if you die to Dr. Andonuts at the end of the game.
  • Lethal Joke Weapon: The HP-Sucker, when used against the Phaze Destrortur.
  • Marathon Boss: Dr. Andonuts has tons of HP, so much so that not even PSI Bitchkill will kill him in one hit.
  • Mind Screw:
    • Varik is the main character of the story who is joined by Jeff, Paula, and Poo... but not Ness. Where is he? The game often draws strange parallels between the two, as if they're the same or Varik has replaced him in more than a story role.
    • Similarly, are the Paula, Jeff, and Poo the same ones who were transported to the alternate timeline, who have somehow figured out a way to bridge the gap and attempt to help Dr. Andonuts back to sanity? Or are they just creations conjured up by Andonuts' own psyche based off his memories from them? Considering the "courage" you frequently talk to in his Magicant sounds like it's speaking as if it's each one of them, respectively, and seems to know things Andonuts' himself shouldn't... (Such as the fact that the chosen four did survive their trip to the past and back again...)
  • Missing Mom: Jeff's mom is shown in a flashback leaving Dr. Andonuts and later dying, explaining why she's not seen in EarthBound.
  • Monstrosity Equals Weakness: The Id is frightening-looking, but it doesn't even try to fight you. However, after defeating it, Dr. Andonuts goes back to looking human... and then uses his mind power to turn into a PSI-wielding, profanity-spouting superhuman.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • The game starts out silly and irreverent, just like the canon MOTHER games. Then you open a door in the Twoson Sewers and the game transforms into something much darker. Then you enter Dr. Andonuts' mind, which is nothing but mood whiplash in all directions.
    • Also, in the "good" ending, after the tragic final battle with Dr. Andonuts, Varik returns home just in time for a ghost to fart in his face.
  • Mordor: The World of Doom, a ruined version of Winters.
  • Museum of the Strange and Unusual: The Death Museum. It features models of Paula, Jeff, Poo, and Dr. Andonuts's wife. A mental construct of Dr. Andonuts in said museum claims he is proud of killing the Chosen Four. Most creepily, it has a pedestal perfectly fit for Varik. The blank pedestal is confused about who Varik is.
  • Musical Nod: "The Id" is not an original song by Toby, like "Meglovania." It's a remix of Final Fantasy Legend III's "Ending Sol's Demise." Both boss battles are similar, as well.
  • My Greatest Failure: Dr. Andonuts blames himself for the deaths of his wife and the Chosen Four.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: The Uberhaunt, the Transdimension Terminate, the Phaze Destrortur, the Monster, the Vladula, Dearkhart, the Giegue League, and the Brain Buster certainly qualify.
  • National Stereotypes: Parodied with the Mexican stereotype costume.
  • Nerd Glasses: Bizarrely, Jeff has to find and equip these in order to actually wear them.
  • Never Say "Die": Very purposely averted. The whimsical death messages were retooled into Bloodier and Gorier versions, with unique deaths for many enemies.
    "The Remnant strangles itself to death with its many hands!"
    "The Desire Dog's body collapsed into an array of wriggling tentacles!"
  • Never Trust a Trailer: Done on purpose. Radiation explained on his site that he only put in the humorous beginning scenes in the trailer to make everyone think it was going to be a silly hack.
  • New-Age Retro Hippie: Obsessive Recyclers. They are an obvious Palette Swap of the Hippies and live in Twoson Sewers.
  • Nintendo Hard: Radiation even tells you to spam the save states if you need to.
  • No Indoor Voice: The... THINGS in Dr. Andonuts' consciousness tend to yell a lot. It's creepier than it sounds.
  • No Sense of Personal Space: The "Remember Me?" monster. One of its attacks is to hug Varik, solidifying him somehow.
  • Non-Standard Game Over: Lose a battle to the final boss and you'll end up in the continue screen as usual… except the narrator refuses to let you continue, forcing you to close and reopen the game.
    "Just kidding, you are dead forever! Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha..."
  • Note from Ed.:
  • Nothing Is Scarier
  • Our Monsters Are Weird: In Dr. Andonuts's mind, you will see the weirdest and creepiest shit...
  • Our Vampires Are Different: The Vladula. Falls asleep during battle, but if it wakes up, it has dangerous techniques.
  • Our Zombies Are Different:
    • The New Age Retro Hippies get another Palette Swap in the form of the zombified Overrecycled. The Overrecycled look rotten in comparison to the Obsessive Recyclers and end up being an obstacle to Varik's journey like their counterparts.
    • The Remnant enemy is a goopy, melty version of the Starman Mook from EarthBound. They were probably beaten by Ness and came back through sheer will and determination.
    • When the Uberhaunt dies, it blows up into confetti.
  • Palette Swap: Used to great effect. The early parts of the game use cheap palette swaps and out of place enemies like dinosaurs and Frankystein Mark II's, in order to lower expectations. Then extremely elaborate palette swaps begin to appear alongside entirely new enemies, to the point that nearly nothing from Twoson Sewers on isn't heavily modified.
  • Point of No Return: Lots, since But Thou Must! is a major theme of the game: entering the Winters Sewers, entering the World of Doom, entering Dr. Andonuts' lab, entering Magicant, and finally, entering the final Boss Room.
  • The Power of Hate: Dr. Andonuts runs off this during the final battle.
    Dr. Andonuts: I will burn you to such a crisp, your ashes will scream for water!
  • Pure Energy: Psycho Psource. It can cast various PSI and shove itself down the group's throats.
  • Purple Prose: Some of the enemy attack and death messages can get really flowery, which, combined with the text auto scrolling, can make it hard to read a few of them. A few of them can easily take up three text boxes by themselves.
  • Puzzle Boss: Thanks to the fact that a lot of the (supposed) Useless Useful Spells actually do work on the bosses, bosses that can be nightmares are complete jokes. In addition, some bosses can actually be defeated quickly by using outside the box tactics. A few examples include defeating the "NO! NO! NO!"'s groin first defeats all the "NO!"s and using the HP Sucker on the Phaze Destrortur deals a high amount of damage to it.
  • Railroading: Varik can explore the town of Twoson, but he cannot leave it because there are really tough enemies on the outskirts of town. If he manages to get past these enemies, the exits are blocked off. Using cheats to go past the boundaries leads to some glitchiness thanks to the massive map edits.
  • Sequential Boss: The Final Boss. You start out by fighting Dr. Andonuts's defenseless Id. After beating it, Andonuts completely loses it. Andonuts himself has five phases, each with its own weakness: First Timestop, then Freeze, then Flame, then reflecting PSI Shields for PSI Bitchkill, and finally one last beatdown.
  • Tactical Rock–Paper–Scissors: Whiteshocknote  works on undead, Sleepstunnote  works on living enemies, and Timestopnote  works on non-living objects.
  • Quirky Bard: Varik himself. His stats are notably lower than Ness', and unlike him, he doesn't have a single offense PSI—er... magic attack. All his magic abilities are status inducers. This is less useless than you'd think, though, as those status inducers will be needed if you want to even hope to get through this game. He can also equip all of Poo's equipment, although some of them are actually weaker than what is exclusive to him. note 
  • Rapid-Fire "No!": In boss form!
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Dr. Andonuts delivers one to Varik before the final battle, claiming that Varik is not a hero and that he should leave the doctor alone.
    "Varik! Are you surprised? Look at what this world has done to me. LOOK AT ME! YOU'RE NOT A HERO.. You kill people for money. Where's the heroism in that? YOU WENT INTO AN OLD MAN'S MIND SO YOU COULD KILL HIM! [...] WHAT IS THIS FEELING? ...hahaha, I know what this feeling is... It's hatred. For the person who came so far. Just to destroy an old man. My mind is gone. All that is left is pure hatred. g-GUHhmyNOhahahhahaha. People says I can't take what I dish out. YOU SEE THIS BURNING, BLOODY UNIVERSE? YOU SEE THIS ULTIMATE, UNLIMITED POWER? Varik. I HAVE FUCKING HAD IT WITH YOUR SHIT. You little fuckers are going to have your bodies ripped in half. I'll shove your asses so far down your throats that when you crap, you'll sing fucking Beethoven. tl;dr: eat shit, faggots."
  • Recurring Riff: Twoson in the fall. It is the "Twoson" theme and the "Love Theme" from Mother 3 wedged together. Just goes to show how the Mother games had similar melodies.
  • Remixed Level: Many of the EarthBound maps are reused in different contexts. For instance, the Twoson Sewers map is an edit of the Fourside Sewers map.
  • Rule of Funny: Yes, even after things go south. Every part of Dr. Andonuts's mind has at least some degree of black humor in it.
  • Rule of Three: The hack contains three Sanctuary (Memory) bosses.
  • Spoiler Title: Pressing the B Button at a critical decision will allow the player to access the rest of the game.
  • Shock and Awe: The Phaze Destrortur, being a living electrical hazard, uses this as its main method of attacking.
  • Shout-Out:
    • A guy and his cat in Twoson reenact a Garfield strip.
    • The Final Boss shows up looking like a modified Uboa.
    • The Id boss was based on one of the Final Bosses from Final Fantasy Legend III. Specifically, it was meant to be an inversion.
    • The "Blue Antoid" enemy is named after a forumer on
    • NO NO and NO are Cho Aniki sprites that have been edited to be a little creepier. And to focus on the parts Andonuts likes.
    • One of the Exit Mice makes a non sequitur reference to Family Guy.
    • Radiation confirmed that "Megalovania," the Final Boss theme, was named after Transylvania and the Live A Live boss theme "Megalomania." The similar ideals behind Odio and Dr. Andonuts, especially their hatred, is also notable.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance:
    • The music that plays when you fight Dearkhart and the Phaze Destrortur is easily 'at least' the second-coolest music in the game, despite being used for two of the creepiest enemies in the game.
    • Also, the Amalgamate has New Age Retro Hippie as its battle theme.
  • Stylistic Suck: The early areas of the game don't have much scary or technically impressive things, but that's to trick the player, to lower expectations.
  • Take a Third Option: When you examine the Magicant machine, you are given two choices: "Kill the monster" and the text box border (which the game tells you to pick a "real answer"). To see the rest of the game, you must refuse by pressing the B button.
  • Turns Red: Dr. Andonuts as his attacks become progressively more dangerous.
  • Unprovoked Pervert Payback: One of the Twoson department store clerks freaks out at you because she thinks Varik is somehow ogling her.
  • Useless Useful Spell: Averted. Radiation said in a walkthrough he placed a few "idiot killers" in the game. If you fly in and just attack without any form of strategy, they will kill you very quick. However, if the player uses a technique that inflicts status ailments, they will be disabled and unable to deal major damage.
  • The Very Definitely Final Dungeon: A multi-segmented one. First, you go through the dangerous part of Magicant, which is similar to the original game's version but with the enemies from the second Magicant dungeon. Then, you traverse a horrific monstrosity vaguely resembling the final boss's room in the original. After that, you have to get through the Cave of the Past. Finally, you hit the Sea of Eve, where you fight the Amalgamates. After all that, you get a safe zone where you can restock and save before fighting the Final Boss.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: The Desperate Survivor "enemies" are bloodied, weeping men who always run from you in Winters. They apologize for fighting you, cough and wheeze with the effort of staying alive, can only deal scratch damage to you when they do choose to attack, and finally apologize for your murdering them in turn. Killing them serves no real purpose other than to provide an actual choice for once, and fill your inventory with healing items if you're feeling paranoid.
  • Video Games and Fate: The game is basically deconstructing the idea of games that force their player to do things they don't want to do, yet the player still does it anyways for the sake of completing the game or seeing more content (which Toby Fox further explored in Deltarune). Even the Interface Screw choice isn't really a choice because the outcome is the same, though showing agency and going against the game's will nets you the good ending. Dr. Andonuts still dies. But hey, at least Varik doesn't!
  • Wham Line:
  • Womb Level: The last, eerie walk into the center of Dr. Andonuts' mind seems to take place on a large, pulsating optic nerve/brain... thing.
  • Zero-Effort Boss: The Id never lifts a finger to try to defend itself. It just sits there and tries to guilt-trip you.