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MANKIND IS DEAD
BLOOD IS FUEL
HELL IS FULL
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ULTRAKILL is a Stylish Action retro-style First-Person Shooter made by Arsi "Hakita" Patala and published by New Blood Interactive. You play as V1, one of the robotic survivors of a war where combat robots that run on blood exterminated humanity for fuel, and find themselves fresh out. But there is still one last source left to tap into: all the demons and damned souls in Hell.

Gameplay hearkens back to the lightning fast shooters of old and places emphasis on movement, dodging attacks, and unbridled aggression in arena-style levels. V1's health can only be restored by showering in the blood of enemies, necessitating damaging foes at close range. Along the way, killing foes in varied and stylish ways will grant points that V1 can spend on weapon upgrades.

The game's prologue and first act were released in Early Access on September 3, 2020, and a free demo is available on Steam and itch.io.

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ULTRAKILL provides examples of:

  • Adaptational Heroism: In The Divine Comedy, King Minos is the nefarious judge of Hell who sentences souls to one of its layers depending on their sins. Meanwhile in this game, King Minos is a benevolent king who turned the Layer of Lust into a thriving paradise because he felt that eternal damnation is an unfair punishment for sinners who simply love another.
  • Adaptational Villainy: In The Bible, the Archangel Gabriel is an angel of pure goodness who serves as God's messenger. Here in this game, he's a ruthless zealot who murdered the beloved King Minos for showing compassion for the sinners suffering in the layer of Lust and turning it into a thriving paradise.
  • Advanced Movement Technique: Jumping out of a dash will retain the dash's momentum, sending V1 flying around the level. This can be further chained with slides, wall jumps, and bunnyhopping.
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  • Alpha Strike: The Railcannon does significant damage, but it's limited by a 16 second reload. With how fast-paced Ultrakill's combat is, this relegates its role to dealing a one-time hefty blow to certain enemies or as a panic button.
  • Alternate Fire: All weapons so far except the railcannon (which just zooms in the camera) have one. They range from relatively mundane (a piercing Charge Attack on the revolver or a grenade launcher-esque explosive projectile for the shotgun) to more creative and stylish (like the revolver's coin shot or the nailgun's magnet traps).
  • Animal Motif: As a reference to his original Dante's Inferno counterpart (who's a serpentine monster), King Minos has a snake motif, which can be seen through his corpse (the parasitic worms controlling his corpse are described as serpentine), and through his Prime Soul (each of his arms are coiled by a snake, and he uses them to enhance his attacks. He also summons a large etheral snake as a deadly homing projectile).
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Usually when facing a boss, you have to defeat it in one go, with any deaths sending you back to the beginning of the fight. But for the rematch against V2 in 4-4, the game gives you a checkpoint upon defeating the first phase, so you don't have to start from scratch if you die during the shorter, slightly easier second phase.
  • The Anti-Nihilist: The unseen character in the secret dating game level rejects the idea that nothing matters, and counters Mirage's viewpoint with a speech on how the lack of inherent meaning to existence allows one to come up with whatever meaning they want.
  • Apocalypse How: We don't know what happened exactly (yet) but mankind is dead and their souls are now in Hell.
  • Armless Biped: The Filth are green humanoid Husks that lack arms and eyes.
  • Ascended Glitch: You can parry your own shotgun bullets if you time it right and there's a glitch called "slam storage" that allows you to gain insane height. This were originally bugs but have since been official features, with parrying your shotgun being called a "Projectile Boost".
  • Attack Its Weakpoint: Except for certain enemies, such as Drones and Something Wicked (who doesn't need one to be killed instantly anyways), just about every single enemy and boss has a weak spot, and since a majority of them are humanoid, the head is the obvious answer. As for the other enemies, you have to aim for something other than their head.
    • Street Cleaners die instantly if you aim for the flamethrower tank behind their back.
    • The Hideous Mass enemy is almost immune to damage on its many, many faces, but takes full damage if its exposed flesh is struck. The tail is also a good weak point, as long as your aiming is good.
    • The Mindflayer's weakpoints are the machine's head and the two protrusions on the back, and attacking the tentacles counts as limb damage.
    • The Corpse of King Minos can be hit anywhere, but his eyes take the most damage, along with the parasitic worms that pop out of his eye sockets.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: The Corpse of King Minos, boss of 2-4, is so massive that just one of his hands is several times larger than V1 and the next few levels are inside of it.
  • Awesomeness Meter: Combat is judged by the usual Stylish Action style meter that increases as V1 slaughters enemies, increasing its rank further for doing so in unique, skillful ways (such as headshots, multi-kills, environmental kills, and weapon swapping). Doing actions while in the air or sliding adds a passive point multiplier, while taking damage slightly decreases the meter. Ranks start at D (Destructive) and go to C (Chaotic), B (Brutal), A (Anarchic), S (Supreme), SS (SSadistic), SSS (SSShitstorm), and cap out at ULTRAKILL rank.
  • After the End: According to the mission parameters, humanity is dead, and Hell is full as a result.
  • Beware My Stinger Tail: The Hideous Mass uses its tail to fire a harpoon at you.
  • BFG: Most of the weapons, aside from the Revolver, are half V1's size.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies:
  • Blackout Basement:
    • The prelude's secret level, Something Wicked, is a pitch-black labyrinth, meaning that the player has to navigate almost entirely by the light given off by a skull.
    • 4-3, A Shot In The Dark, which takes place in the darkened interior of the pyramid in the Greed layer.
  • Blood Is Squicker in Water: Used as a gameplay mechanicnote . Killing an enemy underwater creates a bloody mist that lingers for longer, but heals less, since the blood is diluted by water.
  • Blood-Splattered Warrior: Since you're playing as a Killer Robot fueled by blood, soaking yourself in the blood of your slain enemies at close range is the number one way to heal yourself, most preferably with a shotgun.
  • Bonus Boss: Special levels called Prime Sanctums, which can only be beaten by gaining a perfect rank for the entire act, feature extremely hard boss battles for each act.
    • As of now, the Prime Sanctum of Act 1 features the soul of King Minos, aka Minos Prime, who must first be freed from the Flesh Prison. He makes Gabriel look like a breeze.
  • Boom, Headshot!: Can only be done with hitscan weapons. They, naturally, give extra damage and a nice boost to the style meter. The revolver's coin shot always headshots.
  • Boss Banter: Gabriel really likes telling the player about how a soulless machine could never stand up to the might of an angel.
  • Boss-Only Level: With the exception of some light platforming or exploration elements, the final level of each circle consists only of a fight with that level's boss. This is also the case for Prime Sanctums.
  • Bottomless Magazines: Not only is there no reloading at all, much like the 90's shooters that inspired it, there's not even any ammo to worry about. Only the Nailgun has any restriction on how frequently you can fire, while the railcannon and some weapon alt fires merely have a cooldown.
  • Brutal Bonus Level: The Prime Sanctums. If you manage to find them and get the P ranks necessary to enter, you deserve your punishment.
  • Build Like an Egyptian: Layer 4 (Greed) has a very prominent ancient Egyptian theme.
  • Cherry Tapping: Directly punching most boss-type enemies with the Feedbacker earns a +DISRESPECT bonus. It's one of the weakest attacks in the game. Curiously, V2 doesn't seem to care about it at all, as long as you don't punch it with its own arm during the rematch.
  • Circles of Hell: Hell is layered in the classic Dante fashion. The Early Access version features the first four circles: Limbo, Lust, Gluttony and Greed.
  • Companion Cube: It's noted in the lore entry for the Mindflayer that the body it is attached to is a creation of its own and serves no practical purpose (being even called a "waste of resources"), but the Mindflayer will nevertheless protect it at all costs, even if that means its own destruction.
  • Council of Angels: According to the lore entry for Gabriel, King Minos and his soul, and in the end cutscene for Act I, Heaven is run by such a council. If Minos Prime's lore is any indication, this is because God has flat out vanished.
  • Crapsaccharine World: Limbo is a beautiful and serene Grecco-Roman-Medieval inspired world that seems like it should be a paradise. However, everything here is fake—the walls are computer monitors while the wind rustling through the trees is just music. It seems that the rest of Hell is behind the fake walls, meaning the damned are waiting to pop out and wreck havoc. In essence, Limbo is a beautiful paradise just waiting to be destroyed, and a journal you can find at the climax of the level implies that the perfect stillness of the place is driving its residents insane.

    "...My mind is adrift with the eternal torments. Lurid vistas painted insidious tones, hollow walls that scream to the touch. A mocking song plays at all hours, even the sounds of birds are fake. All reminders of my enduring damnation."

  • Cyber Cyclops: V1 and V2 just have a glowing yellow hole on their "face," which seems to be an eye.
  • Cyberpunk: The circle of Lust has a futuristic city aesthetic.
  • Deader Than Dead:
    • Lampshaded with Act 1's title, "Infinite Hyperdeath"; V1 is going into Hell and killing things that are ostensibly already dead.
    • This is the fate of King Minos after P-1, when his Prime Soul is destroyed.
  • Degraded Boss: Certain powerful enemies in the game are introduced to the player as boss fights before they become normal enemies in later levels.
  • Difficult, but Awesome: The Marksman modification for the revolver. While the coin is a very tiny target that can be difficult to hit in the middle of a heated battle, it flies in a predictable arc, and the ricochet shot automatically homes in on enemy weak points and subsequently does massive damage to most things it hits (and gives a big boost to the style meter to boot). Creative use of it even allows hitting enemies around corners or behind V1. Shoot it at just the right time and the projectile will even split in half to hit two enemies at once!
  • Double-Meaning Title: The very literal names of the Womb Levels are "Belly of the Beast" and "In the Flesh".
  • Drum and Bass: The best way to describe the soundtrack is this mixed with Industrial Metal, with some exceptions here and there.
  • Early-Bird Cameo:
    • Gabriel can be seen depicted on a stained glass window in 1-4, a few hours before his boss battle.
    • The Corpse of King Minos, boss of 2-4, can be seen way off in the distance in the three levels before the stage where you actually fight it. It gets higher up and closer as V1 descends through the layer of Lust.
    • Swordsmachine spends the whole level before his first intended encounter competing with V1 for kills.
  • Endless Game: The Cyber Grind, a game mode where the player must battle endless waves of enemies in a large arena with a constantly-shifting layout.
  • The Evils of Free Will: The Testament's author at the end of S-0 considered humankind as a failure, free-will as a flaw, and humanity deserved to be destroyed by its own evil.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: The soundtrack for 1-2, "A Complete And Utter Destruction of the Senses".
  • Expy:
    • Gabriel is a very transparent homage to Vergil, wielding a holy light themed version of Vergil's summoned swords, and even paraphrasing one of his most iconic taunts:
    Gabriel: Foolishness, machine. Foolishness.
    • He also is one to Credo, with the angelic design, thrown spears that can be returned for big damage and saying "Behold the power of an angel!"
  • Fackler Scale of FPS Realism: High emphasis on dodging attacks rather than taking cover, lack of enemies with hitscan attacks, no reloading, no iron-sights, foes with obvious attack patterns, keycard hunting, and advanced movement systems like Rocket Jumping and bunny-hopping all contribute to place ULTRAKILL firmly on the unrealistic, "classic" end of the scale.
  • Fantastic Racism: Apparently, angels have a very low opinion on robots, considering them mere objects and the idea that a machine could overcome a wielder of Holy Light to be utter heresy. When Gabriel is defeated by V1, the Council of Angels blame him and strip him of his power and demand that he defeat V1 for good as penance.
    • If the Virtue's lore (and other lore found in Greed) is any indication, they don't have a good opinion of humans either, sinner or otherwise; What with how they ruthlessly manage Hell (King Minos, anyone?) and that angels derived from human souls are explicitly referred to as lesser angels. They generally see humanity as God's personal (failed) experiment.
  • Flamethrower Backfire: Shooting a Streetcleaner's gas tank blows them up instantly, netting an Instakill bonus.
  • Fragile Speedster: V1 is very mobile, and the player can move around the levels extremely quickly once they get the hang of the game's movement system. That said, even the weakest enemies in this game can take about a quarter of your health bar if they hit you, meaning that V1's mobility needs to be used dashing into melee range to heal as often as it's used to avoid damage in the first place.
  • Gameplay Grading: In standard stylish action faction. At the end of each level, the player is ranked on a scale from D to S for how quickly they got through a level, how many enemies were killed, and how many style points were gained, granting an overall letter grade for the level that averages out the three stats. S ranking all three categories without ever dying grants a Perfect rank for the level. There's also a large point bonus for finishing a level without taking any damage.
  • Giant Hands of Doom: The Corpse of King Minos. In his boss level, he attacks you with his giant hands before ripping the building's ceiling apart to start the real battle, and his Megaton Punch packs a wallop. And that's not getting into the black holes he summons by pointing his finger on the battlefield.
  • Glass Cannon:
    • V1 has high mobility and an arsenal of weapons with infinite ammo, but they're almost as fragile as the enemies they kill.
    • In Stage 0-S, the skeletal monster can instantly kill V1 by mere touch, but a single shot from the revolver is enough to kill it temporarily.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: The Corpse of King Minos has a pair of massive blank eyes that glow white. Since he's a reanimated corpse, Minos combines that trope with Glowing Eyelights of Undeath.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Making robots that run perfectly using human blood as fuel was only going to end in death for someone; here, it was humanity that bit it.
  • The Good King: According to a book in level 2-2, Death at 20,000 Volts, King Minos was considered a fair ruler by his people back when he was alive, and when Gabriel killed him, Minos' people mourned for his death. According to the lore of Minos Prime, Minos felt that eternal suffering for love was an unfair punishment, so he turned the Circle of Lust into a thriving paradise out of kindness for the sinners. Even after his death, his legacy as a benevolent king is still fondly remembered by his people.
  • The Goomba: The Filth enemy type — ragged, armless demons that do little more than bum rush V1 to chomp on them in melee range. A single shot from the revolver is enough to put them down.
  • Gorn: Yep, there is plenty of blood and assorted body parts to go around. In fact, drenching yourself in the red stuff is the only way to heal.
  • Grappling-Hook Pistol: The Whiplash (green arm). It can drag small enemies towards V1, and drags V1 towards large enemies and grapple points.
  • Ground Pound: V1 can slam into the ground to crush enemies directly below it and create a shockwave that launches foes into the air at the cost of stamina, and jumping after a slam will let you jump higher than normal.
  • Gun Fu: Invoked; performing various actions whole sliding and during airtime, can grant you up to a 3x score multiplier!
  • Guns Akimbo: The Dual Wield powerup lets you wield a copy of your gun in your other hand. Or your other other hand if you pick up another. Or another. Basically, they stack infinitely.
  • Hand Cannon: The first weapon obtained is a meaty revolver capable of one-shotting basic mooks. You can later find an alternative version with lower fire-rate but much higher damage.
  • Heal It with Blood: The Killer Robot protagonist, V1, heals themself by soaking in the fresh blood of their foes, and since there are no pick-ups other than the occasional hidden power-ups (including one that doubles their health), this is the only effective way to heal. According to V2's terminal data, V1's thin metal plating allows them to refuel by absorbing blood on contact rather than using a separate refueling process, allowing them to repair damage while shedding blood on the battlefield. V1 aside, the other robots also run on blood, and because mankind is dead and Hell is full of demons and the damned, the robots invade Hell itself to find more. Blood is fuel indeed.
  • Heavenly Blue: Fittingly for an angel, Gabriel's glamorous armor is covered in white and gold with accents of silver, and his wings glow sky blue. Not that he's a good guy to begin with. The soul of King Minos is also clad in divine white and blue, and unlike Gabriel, he's a good guy to begin with.
  • Heroic Mime: It's not entirely clear whether V1 is even capable of speaking, though in an Easter Egg, V1 will make the Quake Ranger grunt every time it jumps if the game's viewmodels are centered and the HUD is set to "classic" style. A textbox reads "You're not getting away this time" when V2 tries to escape from their rematch in 4-4, implied to be V1's Internal Monologue.
  • Hitscan: Used sparingly. V1's only hitscan weapons are the revolver and the Electric and Malicious variants of the railcannon, with even the shotgun firing physically-modeled projectiles instead. The only enemy hitscan attack in the game is the Malicious Face's explosive beam attack, which has an obvious wind-up and stops tracking V1 just before it fires — even V2's revolver in the Mirror Match uses projectiles and can thus be dodged. Only hitscan attacks can be bounced off the Marksman revolver's coin, and using it to reflect the Malicious Face's beam back into it gives the "Chargeback" bonus.
  • HP to 1: The Corpse of King Minos will release a dark energy ball that chases V1 halfway through the fight. If you touch it, your max health will be reduced to one for a while. The Flesh Prison also does that.
  • Humanity's Wake: The game takes place long after the extinction of humankind, and we don't know what exactly caused it. However, the Testament at the end of S-0 implied that humanity is responsible for its own destruction, thanks to the evils of its own free-will. Alternatively, Minos Prime claimed that humanity is killed by robots.
  • Humanoid Abomination:
    • Cerberus and The Corpse of King Minos. The former is a featureless humanoid statue that throws explosive orbs at V1 and somehow bleeds when damaged, and the latter is a massive Undead Abomination with the ability to summon miniature black holes with his fingers, and if enough damage is dealt, giant parasitic worms pop out of his eye sockets.
      • His trapped soul, Minos Prime, appears as a Heavenly Blue, transparent humanoid being with a hole where his face should be, and red veins inside of his body. He's significantly stronger and faster than his undead corpse, summoning glowing snakes to help him fight V1 while zig-zagging across the battlefield. Minos Prime is so powerful that the angels sealed him away in the Flesh Prison, as they're unable to fight him directly.
    • Stage S-0 has Something Wicked, a spindly humanoid creature that marks its presence with a dreadful drone, followed by a piercing screech whenever it finds V1. Something Wicked can also kill V1 by a single touch, and while the Revolver can take it down in one shot, Something Wicked will teleport to a different spot. Hell, this thing is so mysterious that its lore can't figure out its true nature.
  • Idiosyncratic Combo Levels: Destructive, Chaotic, Brutal, Anarchic, Supreme, SSadistic, SSShitstorm, and finally ULTRAKILL.
  • Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels: Six total difficulty levels, split between "Easy", "Normal", and "Hard" categories, with two in each category: Easy consists of "Harmless" and "Lenient", normal has "Standard" and "Violent", and hard has "Brutal", and "ULTRAKILL Must Die".
  • Implacable Man: So far, V1 has continuously proven themself to be stronger than whatever the circles of Hell can throw at them. Not even Gabriel or Minos Prime are much of a match for the robot.
  • In the Style of...: "Castle Vein" sounds a lot like something out of Castlevania. Fitting, given the name.
  • Just a Machine: Angels, especially Gabriel, consider all robots as mere objects rather than sentient beings in their own right.
  • Killer Robot: V1 literally runs on blood to the point of healing when showering in it, and they will slaughter the entirety of Hell if it means to keep running. The other robots invading Hell, such as Swordsmachine, V2, and especially Mindflayers, are no slouch either.
  • The King Slayer: According to a book in 2-2, King Minos, the fair ruler of Lust, was undeservingly slain by the Archangel Gabriel, the latter justifying the slaying as God's Will. Now Minos returns as an Undead Abomination, with his corpse reanimated by the parasitic worms he once commanded, and his soul sealed away in the Flesh Prison by the angels. Even V1 becomes one by destroying Minos' soul as a Bonus Boss.
  • Konami Code: Using the Konami Code unlocks cheats, anytime and anywhere, and these cheats include invincibility, no-clip, infinite dashes and wall-jumps, no weapon cool-down, and so on. That being said, using cheats prevents you from getting a level rank or a Cyber Grind score, although you can still complete challenges and find secrets.
  • Life Drain: V1 is powered by blood, so being showered in the blood of your foes as you kill or damage them is the only reliable source of healing.
  • Light Is Not Good: Archangel Gabriel is the Climax Boss of Act I, and he does not have a good opinion of machines such as you. Scratch that, just about every angel we see is a bit of a dick. Or trying to blow you up.
  • Lightning Gun: The default version of the Railcannon, which deals a lot of damage and pierces infinitely through enemies.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: Just about everywhere; all enemies explode into showers of meat and blood, even with nonlethal blows. It's only natural for a robot that explicitly wants blood to deliver death in the messiest ways possible.
  • Malevolent Architecture: Many arenas feature environmental hazards that in many cases mean instant death if you touch them. Of course, enemies are also susceptible to falling victim to them, and you can get many unique bonuses by killing enemies this way.
  • Megaton Punch: Maiming demons with bare (if metallic) fists is one thing, but V1 goes beyond. Ever sent a bullet back to sender by punching it? Ever thought your own projectiles were too slow, and punched them to make them go faster? All are options here.
    • Played more straight with the Knucklebuster arm dropped by V2. Charging it generates a massive explosion in front of V1 that sends most enemies flying.
  • Mirror Match: The boss of 1-4 is V2, which is nearly identical to V1 except for a red paint-job. V2 also uses all of the weapon attacks that the player will have unlocked by that point.
  • Monster Compendium: The terminal contains lore entries for all of the enemies that V1 encountered, though they must be defeated in order to unlock their lore.
  • Nail 'Em: The Nailgun is essentially a gatling gun that fires nails, similarly to the Super Nailgun from Quake.
  • Nerf: The Attractor Nailgun and the Overheat Nailgun had been nerfed so that players are encouraged to swap weapons. The former now has an ammo limit of 100 and can only fire 3 magnets at a time, and the latter has a slower fire-rate if it keeps firing. That being said, the Attractor Nailgun has reduced spread, increased velocity, and increased damage against fodder enemies (such as Filths, Strays, Schisms, and Soldiers), and the Overheat Nailgun still retains infinite ammo. Plus, both Nailguns still deal increased damage against Malicious Faces.
  • Nintendo Hard: Enemies can kill you in four hits at their weakest and you can only restore health by getting close enough to bathe in their blood. You need a mastery of the game's movement mechanics to survive.
  • Nominal Hero: Under almost any other circumstance, invading Hell itself would be considered a good thing, but V1 has nothing but selfish reasons for doing so: finding more blood to consume. Upon meeting other robots such as Swordsmachine or V2, they duke each other out on sight, implying that the robots don't even have loyalty to their own kind.
  • Non-Indicative Name: Cerberus, normally a three-headed dog and the Guardian of Hell, are twin statues of a faceless human here. The lore entry even notes this, as the demons are named for their role rather than their appearance.
  • Nostalgic Music Box: A music box version of "The Fire is Gone" plays whenever V1 reads a Testament at the end of a Secret Level.
  • One-Man Army: Let's just say the title of ULTRAKILL is a very, very accurate one. Hell, one of the levels is literally titled A One-Machine Army.
  • Our Angels Are Different:
    • Gabriel, the Act 1 Final Boss, is an armored angel with glowing blue wings and a cross on his mask. He also summons swords out of thin air in his battle.
    • A new type of angel called a Virtue shows up in Act 2 as an Elite Mook, and it looks far more like a Biblical depiction of an angel. Additionally, its lore tab page says that lesser angels (derived from human souls) such as the Virtue are often given more abstract shapes than the humanoid Greater/Supreme Angels (which are created in Heaven as such) like Gabriel.
  • Our Demons Are Different: Oh boy is Hell full, but its demons are far from the typical Big Red Devil or tiny horned imps with pointy tails. The game's demons are all huge creatures made of stone and flesh, and quite varied in shape, from apparently humanlike statues that bleed when attacked (Cerberus), to giant stone heads that also bleed supported by thin spider-like legs (Malicious Faces), to... grotesque scorpion-thingies whose flesh seems to outgrow the equally grotesque stone exterior (Hideous Mass).
  • Our Souls Are Different: The Husks (Filth, Strays...) are zombie-like creatures made of fragments of souls - not enough to give them true sapience like humans, but enough to be nasty little critters. Prime Souls are extremely powerful souls whose sheer will allow them to manifest physically without a Husk.
  • Overdrawn at the Blood Bank: The Screwdriver variant of the Railcannon fires a motorized spear. Enemies stuck with it will spray blood constantly and in a huge area, allowing V1 to heal off of them.
  • Overheating: Inverted. While the Nailgun does have an overheat bar, it's actually something you want to fill up, since one of the alt-fires drastically increases the Nailgun's damage at the cost of the heat bar, now that it's launching red-hot nails at enemies.
  • Pinball Projectile: One of the revolver's alt fires is to toss a coin. Shoot it while it's in the air, and it'll reflect whatever shoots it to automatically home in onto the nearest enemy's weak point.
  • Precision F-Strike: Gabriel loses his composure and calls you an "insignificant fuck" when beaten.
  • Public Domain Soundtrack: Several examples:
  • Purple Is Powerful:
  • Pyromaniac: The Streetcleaner enemies, which wield flamethrowers, and are first introduced having torched Limbo while V1 wasn't looking.
  • Quick Melee: V1's left fist. Also works to play tennis with enemy projectiles if the player has good timing.
  • Retraux: Everything about the game's aesthetic is meant to invoke the 3D shooters of old, including Quake and Unreal Tournament. It even has PS1-style texture-warping as a toggle-able option.
  • Rocket Jump: Provided you have enough health and are close enough to an enemy to regain it, one of the shotgun variants' secondary fires can be pumped until it detonates. Done right, this'll propel you to the ceiling - useful for finding some secrets.
  • Science Fantasy: How else would you describe this game's setting if it has Killer Robots taking on demons from Hell with high-tech weapons? Hell, the Act 1 Final Boss is an armored angel.
  • Secret Level: One per layer.
    • Prelude: Found in 0-2 by finding the hidden blue skull and placing it on its podium.
    • Layer 1 (Limbo): Found in 1-1 by tossing a coin into the fountain at the start of the level.
    • Layer 2 (Lust): Found in 2-3 by destroying all hidden power boxes so the waterfall blocking the entrance is removed.
    • Layer 3 (Gluttony): The first Prime Sanctum, found in 3-1 by locating the secret passage that leads to it. Requires P ranks in every level of the Prelude and Act I to enter. Enter at your own peril.
    • Layer 4 (Greed): Found in 4-2 by finding a hidden moon totem and placing it on a special podium, causing night to fall and turning the sand harmless, and then going to a secret located in the desert behind the level start. Currently unavailable.
  • Shifting Sand Land: The 4th layer, Greed, is a seemingly endless desert with a gargantuan pyramid in the background. The sand itself is actually superheated gold dust, which fries just about anything foolish enough to step in it, so watch your footing!
  • Shock and Awe: The Electric variant of the railcannon,which is the first one you'll come across. If an enemy has nails stuck in them, you can use this variant to electrfy those nails and make them explode for extra damage and the "Conductor" bonus.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: Shotguns are already useful in old school first person shooters for close range combat, but given that the only way to heal in this game is by showering yourself in the blood of your enemies, the shotgun is the weapon of choice when low on health.
    • If you parry your bullets just as they come out, they travel faster, explode on impact, and are even incredibly accurate, making the shotgun useful even at longer ranges.
  • Shout-Out: Now has its own page.
  • Spirited Competitor: V1 and V2. V2 bows to V1 before their faceoff, and V1 lets them go afterwards, taking their arm for use as a heavy melee attack.
  • Stylish Action: A rare FPS example. This game hearkens back to the lightning fast shooters of the late 90's, placing extreme emphasis on unbridled aggression and extremely fast movement and mixing it up with more traditional character action mechanics like a Devil May Cry-esque style meter, arena-based level design, and parrying.
  • Surprise Creepy: Level 0-S, Something Wicked. The level drops the game's normal fast-paced Stylish Action for a pitch-black labyrinth devoid of any music and full of terrifying, spindly, One-Hit Kill monsters.
  • Taking You with Me: Mindflayers explode violently upon death. Make sure you keep your distance.
  • Theme Song Reveal: The ambient music that plays during the first part of 4-4 includes a slower version of the opening bass riff from "Versus", V2's first battle theme, giving away that the Layer's boss fight is a rematch against them.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: Turning an enemy into mist with a point blank shotgun blast grants the "Overkill" bonus.
  • This Is a Drill: One of the alternate modes of the Railcannon has it shoot a drill that burrows into an enemy to deal continuous damage.
  • Turns Red: Certain conditions will put enemies in an "Enraged" state, increasing their aggression substantially.
    • Malicious Face and Mindflayer: Reach half health. (Violent only)
    • Swordsmachine: Parry any of its attacks.
    • Cerberus: Kill another Cerberus.
    • V2: Keep your distance for too long. In the rematch in 4-4, hit him with the knuckleblaster.
    • Gabriel: Entering second phase.
    • Virtue: Leave them alive for too long.
  • Ultra Super Death Gore Fest Chainsawer 3000: If the title of the game by itself weren't enough to qualify for this trope, its first act is called Infinite Hyperdeath.
  • Unexpected Gameplay Change: The secret levels (barring the Prime Sanctums) are radically different from the main game's hectic violence - for example, the first secret level is a pitch black, survival horror-esque maze with One-Hit Kill monsters, the second is a serene and relaxing pastiche of The Witness, and the third is a high school-themed Visual Novel akin to Doki Doki Literature Club!.
  • Uncanny Valley: In-Universe, the reason those damned to an eternity in Limbo eventually go insane is that the apparent beauty and serenity of the place is very obviously fake. The pleasant vistas are monitors on the walls, and the sounds of birds and wind are emitted from loudspeakers.
  • Variable Mix:
    • In most levels, the background music becomes heavier when enemies are nearby, and segues back to a slightly calmer exploration mix when all enemies in the arena are defeated.
    • Level 1-4's use of "Clair de lune" progresses further as V1 collects more skull keys to unlock the door to the boss arena.
  • Video Game Dashing: V1 can dash around in any horizontal direction at the cost of energy, which recharges. It's good for clearing large gaps and dodging enemy attacks, since you are invulnerable during it.
  • Video Game Settings: All the different layers of Hell make use of various settings.
  • Video Game Sliding: V1 can slide quickly along the floor, which makes you much faster and a smaller target.
  • Villainous Breakdown: After being beaten by V1, Gabriel loses it, unable to handle being beaten by a mere machine.
    Gabriel: What...?! How can this be? Bested by this...this thing? You insignificant FUCK! THIS IS NOT OVER!
  • Wake-Up Call Boss: The first fight against Swordsmachine serves as the game's first nasty difficulty spike, demanding mastery of the game's movement system.
  • Wall Jump: V1 can slide down and jump off walls, though they can only do it three times before they need to set foot on solid ground to do it again.
  • Winged Humanoid: V1 and V2 are humanoid robots with vaguely angelic wings, as seen in the page image for the former. This also applies to Gabriel, since he's an armored angel with glowing etheral wings.
  • Wings Do Nothing: Averted. According to Hakita, V1's wings allow them to dash and slide, and even hold their guns, so they're more than just cool accessories.
  • Womb Level: Layer 3: Gluttony, which you reach by going into the mouth of the giant Corpse of King Minos. The walls and floor are all meat and bone, the doors are mouths, and stomach acid is a common hazard.
  • Your Days Are Numbered: After his defeat to V1, Gabriel is stripped of the Father's Light as a punishment for losing to "a mere object", and is told that in 24 hours when the embers of it die out that he will die too, unless he can atone and defeat V1. Gabriel, now utterly hating V1, takes up the task.
    If the machines seek blood, he would give it freely; and with such fury, even metal will bleed.

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