Follow TV Tropes


Video Game / Theta vs Pi 8

Go To
New land, new enemies...still the same old Theta.
The eighth game in the Theta vs Pi series and the second to be made for PC.

We once again return to a world where all the characters are Greek letters. Once again, why there is a world where everyone is a Greek letter isn’t explained.

After the ending of the last game, the Theta and the Pi are finally at peace. However, a new enemy has emerged and started launching attacks against both groups.

Theta must journey across the sea to find the source of the attacks and stop them before it’s too late.

The game can be played for free here.


Theta vs Pi 8 provides examples of:

  • 1-Up: As with previous games, collecting a flashing Theta symbol will give you a life.
  • Action Bomb: The Chi have what looks like an old-school TNT detonator with plunger. If Theta gets too close they activate it.
  • Airborne Mook: The Flying Pi fill this role.
  • The Archmage: Pi-metheous who even explicitly refers to himself as “The Former Archmage” of King Pi.
  • Auto-Scrolling Level: In the final land, one of the levels has a platform that fills the screen and follows you, forcing you to keep moving.
  • Backtracking: Not done often but occasionally required in some when you need to find a key then go back to a locked door with it.
  • Bad Ass Boast: Pi-metheous gets one when he confronts Queen Theta and tells her who is and what his plans are.
  • Big Damn Heroes: King Pi gets to do this when Pi-metheous is about to kill Queen Theta.
  • Advertisement:
  • Big Fancy Castle: The final castle in the game is noticeably bigger and fancier than the previous castles.
  • Bookends: The game begins with a cutscene in Queen Theta’s court, following Theta travelling on a ship to his destination. It ends with Theta heading home on that same ship then another cutscene back in Queen Theta’s court with the same characters present (plus a few others).
  • Card Games: One of the minigames in The Beta Days Tavern is a card game called Pi Hand. It’s basically Blackjack but you only get three cards and have to try to get 14.
  • Collision Damage: As with previous games, most enemies will kill you (or at least take away a powerup) if they touch you.
  • Continuing is Painful: If you get a game over, you lose all progress in the current land. In practice, since you can save at any time, it may be easier to return to an earlier save.
  • Continuity Nod: In the previous game, Queen Theta (known as Girl Theta), had a Pi boyfriend. While he doesn’t get any lines, a Pi shows up next to her in her royal portrait (and in the final scene) dressed in royal attire, suggesting they have married.
  • Cranium Ride: The Shell Pi can be ridden like this (although Theta will keep bouncing on them rather than sitting still). This is often the only way to get across pits of spikes or quicksand.
  • Dance Party Ending: If you complete the game, you get to return to Queen Theta’s court where everyone dances (and there’s cake).
  • Eternal Engine: The factory levels have this sort of feeling to them.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Queen Theta gets one when Pi-metheous threatens to kill her. She knows she can’t stop him but refuses to plead for her life.
  • Fantasy Tavern: In spite of the name this is actually averted with The Beta Days Tavern. The clientele drink martinis and wine and the atmosphere is closer to early 20th century than medieval.
  • Foreshadowing: The easiest way to damage Pi-metheous is by catching him in explosions. This is hinted at when King Pi is able to successfully hurt him using his fireballs. Also, the fact that Pi enemies keep showing up even though they’re supposed to be allies, hints that that a Pi is somehow involved.
  • Goomba Springboard: Jumping on enemies automatically propels you into the air.
  • Human Cannonball: Or at least a Theta cannonball. There are various cannons throughout the game which can be used to shoot yourself across gaps in the ground.
  • Heel–Face Turn: King Pi, while formerly an enemy, is now thoroughly an ally.
  • Horse of a Different Color: Eta; Theta’s loyal steed, makes a return.
  • Informed Equipment: Unlike most powerups, the shield powerup isn’t visible anywhere on Theta.
  • Interspecies Romance: Queen Theta seems to have married her Pi boyfriend from the last game.
  • Isometric Projection: While the levels are pretty strictly 2D, the game map sometimes includes 3D elements in this way.
  • Jungle Japes: The sixth land is a jungle land complete with trees and vines.
  • Law Of 100: As with previous games, collecting 100 coins gets a life.
  • Levels Take Flight: The fifth land is based in the sky and if you fall you die.
  • Mercy Invincibility: Theta and the game’s bosses all become temporarily invulnerable after an injury.
  • Missing Time: You can buy a drink at The Beta Days Tavern. Doing so causes you to black out and you’ll wake up outside the tavern with no memory of what happened but with some random outcome (either gaining or losing lives or powerups).
  • Oh, Crap!: While he doesn't say it, being a Silent Protagonist, this seems to be the implication behind Theta's ‘’!’’ when King Pi suggests sending him to find out where the attacks are coming from.
  • Palette Swap: Queen Theta’s guards are clearly Theta except a different colour and with some extra equipment.
  • Portal Door: Doors in the game function like this, transporting you somewhere else in the level.
  • Power-Up: The wizard hat, the shield, the beard and the cape. It’s possible to use all of these at once.
  • Protagonist Without a Past: We don’t really know anything about Theta (including where he lives) other than what’s occurred during the span of this and previous games.
  • Shell Game: One of the minigames in The Beta Days Tavern is based on this. Theta is shrunk down onto a table where the three shells are behind him. He gets to see what’s in them when the game starts but then has to dodge flying spikes as the shells swap places behind him. In practice, since all the shells have a prize, the game is less about keeping track of where an individual item is and more about surviving to collect it.
  • Shifting Sand Land: The desert levels employ quicksand which you’ll sink into if you stand still.
  • Silent Protagonist: Theta never says anything, though other characters talk to him.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: The third land is made mostly of ice levels which work on this principle.
  • Species Surname: All named characters are either referred to by their species or, some descriptor and their species (e.g. King Pi)
  • Spikes of Doom: Delta Spikes litter levels and even shoot out of the ground in the shell game minigame.
  • Springs, Springs Everywhere: The trampoline makes a return and can be used to access difficult platforms or cross large game.
  • Super Not-Drowning Skills: Theta can remain underwater indefinitely. This is probably justified given he doesn’t appear to have a mouth and may not even have lungs. It would be more surprising if he did drown.
  • The Smurfette Principle: Queen Theta (formerly Girl Theta) is the only female Theta seen, while the Delta Lords (the bosses) include one female member (perhaps technically a Delta Lady).
  • Underground Level: The first half of the fourth land involves travelling underground.
  • Under the Sea: There are a few water levels throughout the game. Unlike most levels, you typically have to move both vertically and horizontally.
  • With Friends Like These...: At the start of the game, the whole plot gets underway because King Pi suggests sending “his old friend Theta” to investigate the source of the dark magic attacks.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: