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  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Does Savant truly care for Boki, so much that he made a combat simulator to train her, or is he a genius obsessed with destroying the cybers, so much that he'd use any means necessary, including turning his niece into a Child Soldier?
      • A comment he makes at the beginning of Hard Mode World 12 about how he's not sure what will happen next creates some noteworthy implications for a later development: did Savant deliberately let the Cybers spy on Boki's training in the hope of baiting one into Flux for her to fight, or was he just that Crazy-Prepared and took his bets with the safety measures in place?
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    • Boki. Does she really see the simulation as a game and a way to feel cool and powerful (aside from training her powers), or is she an Ax-Crazy girl who just happened to be let loose in a simulation? This becomes Hilarious in Hindsight with the Hard Mode final boss, Isotope, who's basically all of those traits taken Up to Eleven.
  • Awesome Music: While the entire soundtrack could make it, here's some of the best cuts. In-game, the music heard gets even better depending on the situation and how well you're playing.
    • the title theme, "Melon Microchip". A catchy, upbeat tune that gets incorporated into several parts of the soundtrack as the game goes on.
    • "Durian Domination", the main boss battle music. With its intensity, guitar riffs and more energetic take on the title theme, not to mention how hard many of the bosses can get, you'll be hearing it a lot. Good thing it's such a joy to listen to.
    • the most catchy song in the game, "Strawberry Smooch". It's just so quirky, upbeat, and out-of-place compared to the rest of the game that it's guaranteed to stick out to you the first time you listen to it. Fitting, considering it's Lymia's theme.
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    • Special props goes to "Starfruit Samurai", Arikan's unique battle theme, mixing the game's techno style with Japanese folk instrumentation.
    • The World 10 boss theme, "Pineapple Paladin", and its variations, starting as a tense, ominous piece as you climb your way up and fight a giant Virs, the calm, methodical section as you destroy its core, and the guitar-charged climax as you get to gloriously smash everything with the robot now in your control.
    • "Dragonfruit Deadlock", first heard at the cutscene at the end of World 5 when the Supreme Thremnat first appears on-screen. There's just something about it that makes it sound very menacing, signifying that the game has only just begun.
      • Then we hear the true version of it during the second phase of the Final Boss, where the desperation and energy of it is in full force, as Supreme desperately refuses to be destroyed by Boki.
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    • Aekros gets its own unique variation on the standard boss music, which, in the second part of the battle, begins to contain elements of all other variations of the theme, from the original, to Hard Mode, to Endless Mode variations.
    • "Nectarine Nightmare", the theme for Boki's True Final Boss. While still energetic and fast-paced like the rest of the soundtrack, it's a far more ominous track that heavily features a chilling, synthetic melody that perfectly fits Isotope's personality.
  • Best Boss Ever:
    • The Arikan battle is hard as hell, but is made awesome by the fact that it's a sword duel where the player is given nearly every badass technique (including an obscure projectile attack, which replaces your default beam) the boss himself can do, and even powers up as he does. This goes on as well for Savant, where it's a drill duel instead of sword.
      • Doubly so in Hard Mode. The sheer number of particles and lighting effects might milk your FPS to the last drop, but it's so worth it.
    • With the full version of the game, players finally get a Final Boss worthy of the grand finale: Supreme Thremnat. Words cannot convey the sheer spectacle and rush of exhilaration that comes from this battle: it truly feels like the end, and the final test of Boki's skill as a hero.
    • The Bonus Boss fight against Exgal is as awesome as it is terrifying, with strange, demonic powers you can copy, tense action that leaves very little room to breathe, with three inflated health bars that only make the victory all the more satisfying.
    • The Bonus Bonus Boss Aekros is even more ridiculous with music that gets progressively more intense as the fight goes on. And then it turns into a Shoot' Em Up, ending with Boki and the boss firing screen-filling lasers at each other.
    • The Turbo version added the boss of World 10, Fortress/Stronghold Virs and the Giga/Tera Dengrahx. In addition to fighting a fortress-sized mech/tank, you also get to fight its insides. And once you win, you get to ride it and wreak havoc. And then, using your giant construct, you fight another giant construct!
    • World 11's boss, the incredibly cathartic Phoenix Yoggval, an Egyptian-themed Yoggval that keeps returning to life each time it's killed, becoming more powerful and visually spectacular each time until you finally get the chance to copy its power and kill the Yoggval for good. The Hard Mode version is even more impressive, as it's a homage to the legendary Seven Force, a Final-Exam Boss that makes all the frustration of fighting these bastards pay off in spades.
    • Savant's True Final Boss. The delivery person, revealed to be Lymia (the main hero of the lore), suddenly pops in for a one-on-one, resulting in a truer Mirror Boss than almost every other fight in the game thanks to how similar Savant and Lymia are in both abilities and stature.
    • With Hard Mode, you know that there has to be a way to one-up the stakes when Supreme Thremnat is the Final Boss of Normal mode. Well, how about an actual Cyber jumping into the simulation to fight Boki herself? One whose powers (which Boki also gets to use, of course) are based around atomic explosions and throwing miniature suns?
  • Breather Level:
    • Penguin Popper, Megaton Kick, Unleash the Penguin, Penguin 101, Penguin Golf... pretty much any level that features Makyrooni, since they're utterly defenseless and can kill enemies in hilarious ways.
    • Jelly Processing and Storage can also be this. The level consists of nothing but Konsoobs (and occasional Tasbehts to give you powerups), and you can leisurely clear the first 90% of this level without pressure. This has something to do with it being a puzzle level. Goes double for Savant, whose ability to fly makes the level completely trivial (which he comments on).
  • Catharsis Factor:
    • Once you unlock the Bandana and Metal Kitty modifier, you're free to activate both and wreak havoc, especially on your personal That One Boss.
    • Penguin Popper Deluxe, unlocked after defeating Really Really Big Robots on Hard mode with Boki. Enemies are a bunch of Makyrooni. You are piloting Fortress Virs. Have fun!
    • Savant's equivalent level, Self-Destruct Sequence, takes zero effort to win. Literally all you have to do is sit there and watch the level beat itself.
    • The boss of World 11: Phoenix Yoggval. Tired of facing a Yoggval in almost every world? This time, you get to face one that is a lot grander and more threatening than its peers, to the point that it gets resurrected multiple times. And then, if you fall to its final phase, you get resurrected yourself and get to use its cursed powers against it!
  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome: An attempted subversion, by making weapon combinations weaker the more you use them until you pick up a new combination.
  • Demonic Spiders:
    • Virs. They're giant robots who wake up at the slightest touch. Sun Virs have a very deadly claw and homing attack, and their normal shots can destroy terrains. Moon Virs only have a homing shot, but can only be hurt via a specific weak point that is hard to hit. And that's not getting into the Solar/Lunar Eclipse Virs variations that are fought in hard mode.
    • The Harvester Orzinav, upon getting close to you for more than 1.5 seconds, turns into a scythe-wielding behemoth that can take a ridiculous amount of punishment, and can take half your health away in one swing. On the other hand, defeating this form will ALWAYS yield a full Harvester, which becomes even more powerful in your hands.
    • Fallen Gehligrukais are truly nasty, with a combination shield and damaging aura called "Hellfire Circle", spamming projectiles all over the place, and constantly chasing you. Even the game recommends dropping everything else and killing the crap out of these guys as fast as possible when they appear. Fortunately, they often drop the Hellfire Circle as a copy-able power. For added fun, you need to kill one in order to access the extra world.
    • Delta-version enemies as a whole. In Endless Mode, they serve as the occasional mini-boss. In Hard Mode you will find them all over the place, soaking up absolutely massive amounts of damage and hitting you with superpowered versions of their normal attacks.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Arikan. A robotic sammurai master wielding a shape-shifting magical sword that fires screen-filling lasers. They're stylish, have a substantial presence in the world they appear in, are challenging, but respectful foes that make you earn their gratitude, and have several amusing lines of dialogue if you mess with them. They're one of the rare bosses in the game to be considered so special they have a unique boss theme to accompany their fights.
    • Isotope, Boki's True Final Boss. Not only is she popular as Boki's rival that's an effective Evil Counterpart, she gets love for a brief but memorable look into the highly mysterious mindset of the Cybers. On top of being an insanely fun fight, she is a drastic change in tone to what's otherwise a very lighthearted game, making fans eager for a reappearance in future lore.
  • Game-Breaker: Impressively averted in the long term: with so many weapon combinations, you'd think some of them were bound to be overpowered, but the team has done a great job recognizing and working towards a general balance of powers, so that every combination remains usable and fun and isn't completely overshadowed by another.
    • Inescapable Surge (Force+Quick+Wave) is exactly what it sounds like — an unstoppable stream of shots that tracks enemies with ruthless efficiency even through Metal. All you have to do is hold the button. Was previously in Game-Breaker territory because of very low energy consumption; it was subsequently increased. The weapon is still very viable to players who show restraint and fire in bursts, due to its high DPS taking out enemies quickly.
    • Aurora Star (Wave+Remote+Plasma) was, at one point, ridiculously powerful. Imagine an inexpensive, heavy-hitting, tunneling-laser producing bomb with the biggest damage radius in the game. With just a little skill, players could have gone through dozens of waves without losing a weapon, as it would utterly demolish entire crowds of enemies with proper aim. The team detected that the effort/reward ratio was imbalanced and brought it up for an all-around nerf. It now costs more energy, does less damage per projectile, and no longer leaves trails, making it weak 1v1, but useful in dealing with large groups of small enemies.
      • That turned out to still be problematic, so now it explodes into a star-shaped laser polyspiral that penetrates walls. Not only does this look amazing, but it has the advantage of consistently damaging everything in its wide radius, while getting rid of any broken multi-hit shenanigans. Much more fun and intuitive than either of its predecessors.
    • Cavitation Cannon (Plasma+Light+Explode) might be counted as one. Imagine a wide-range, enemy-piercing laser that explodes on contact. Not only it's good for clearing out a row of enemies quickly, it can also be used to clear out destructible terrain. One shot is enough to make a tunnel that you can enter without extra kicking or rolling.
  • Gameplay Derailment: This game's main mode was supposed to be the endless mode. However, the mission mode proved to be more popular.
  • Goddamn Bats:
    • Yinimros, who are hard to hit due to constantly teleporting around and slowing down projectiles in their vicinity, and the gears they throw can hurl you across the room if they hit.
    • In highly vertical spaces, Leethees will very quickly become this due to their ability to invert their personal gravity, giving them an effortless escape if you catch them (and often sending a tripwire or hail of bullets your way) and allowing the green ones to fire their laser at you from where you can't even fire or see. Heaven help you if you encounter a Leethee Delta in the Cave environment...
    • Konsoobs can become this. They're normally harmless, but if you don't have the right weapon, good luck kicking it to death. That doesn't sound too bad, until you see that its entire body is coated with bouncy gel, which means every time you kick it, you'll be flung away. Have fun.
    • Shadow Exchikkes. They create 3 projectiles that bypass the terrain, home in on you, do a good bit of damage, and accelerate as they move. And they are very common in Hard Mode.
  • Growing the Beard: While it was already a fun game, the move from Turbo to Early Access on Steam had the developers take a few years without updates to focus on polishing the game even further. Now there's dynamic music shifts to accompany particularly crazy moments, the boss battles are much more intricate, especially in the first half of the game with new forms, improved sprites, and better AI, a large balance for some of the more game-breaking weapons, and that's just the beginning. Nuclear Strawberry incorporated more improvements while the game was being playtested, including a True Final Boss and a glut of new features for the randomized levels resulting in a finale that redefines awesome. It's the kind of polish even triple A games would be envious of.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Arikan's Leitmotif is named "Starfruit Samurai". This brings Kamen Rider Gaim of all things in mind, since both incorporate fruits and samurai.
    • Moreso with the Fortress Virs battle theme, "Pineapple Paladin", since not only does a pineapple-based powerup exist, there also is a paladin-themed rider, and with the toy gimmick of mixing and matching armors, you can have a literal pineapple paladin.
  • I Knew It!: Those familiar with creator Raibys's lore will have recognized Lymia as the Delivery Person.
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Just here for The Weapon Combinations And Boss Battles.
  • Moe: Boki can sometimes give off this vibe, most noticeably in the Ask Boki Tumblr.
  • Nightmare Fuel:
    • The fight with Exgal. To elaborate: you start the mission, and this giant shadow rises from the background, revealing itself to be this giant skull thing whose lifebar is nearly incomprehensible and doesn't seem to decrease. It attacks through three pillars with eyes on them, them using bizarre attacks never seen before. When Boki defeats them, she absorbs these powers, causing the music and HUD to become more erratic. When she absorbs all three of them, the HUD nearly becomes impossible to make out, and once you press the combo attack button (or after some time), a field of three sigils is emitted and start surrounding the area. Giant tentacles from something rise from the ground, and when the madness ends, the boss is no longer there and she is unconscious on the ground as the program around her flickers out. Fortunately, she is okay, but it still brings up the question: What the heck did she do to Exgal?
      • Even scarier is that Savant did not intend on that even occurring, as Boki was supposed to win through another method.
    • The Cybers as a whole. A race of twisted, destructive beings bent on scouring Zoincailla for any Entanma, who were all converted from other Entanma themselves. For what purpose, nobody knows, but they've been attacking planets for thousands of years with no signs of stopping. Imagine you're born with a special ability, it could be anything from changing size to warping space and time, and any day you could be captured and taken by the Cybers, with your greatest talents being perverted into raw, destructive power in the most creative ways possible.
    • Something in Boki's Hard Mode World 12: Upon completing Mission 12-3, before the results screen pops up, the game is abruptly interrupted by static. Then, two unnamed and unseen figures begin talking and reveal they're attempting to spy on Boki's training. The very next mission, one of these figures, a Cyber, suddenly breaks into the simulation and fights Boki. Isotope is a complete and utter psychopath who utilizes nuclear reactions in her magic to destroy everything.
      • While Isotope shows herself off, her recon partner remains unseen and unnamed — but the oddest thing about them is their font, which is very different from every other character's speaking fonts. What's their deal?
  • Play the Game, Skip the Story: There's quite a bit of text in the game, expounding upon the game's surprisingly complex and imaginative universe with several alien cultures, planets, and ecologies between the art gallery, extensive encyclopedia, and some short bits of text between levels. But let's be real here, are you really paying attention to the story when the game shoves awesome power after awesome power in your face with insanely fun boss battles?
  • Shocking Moments: The Blade Arikan fight is the first taste of what kind of spectacle the game can throw at you, what with the high speed sword fighting, unique battle music, and upgraded projectiles, but the fights against Exgal and Aekros would most definitely apply, particularly to how they're resolved. Then mechs huger than huge come into the picture. As one youtube commenter said, "This went from 'neat but quirky to full on 'Platinum MGR level stuff'."
  • Stoic Woobie: It's hard not to feel a little sorry for Drill Arikan in Hard Mode when she becomes self-aware of her existence as a simulation. She doesn't angst about it, and resolves to give just as good of a fight to Savant as any of her kind would, because it's what they're programmed to do.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes:
    • The art style is nothing short of cute, with exceptions here and there. But then there's Exgal...
    • The delivery person, AKA Lymia, is THE most ridiculously cute being in the game. The ridiculously peppy music doesn't help.
  • That One Achievement: Some of the achievements can really get frustrating to get. To name a few:
    • 'Rainbow' requires you to use 9 base weapons in a single combo. Although there's leniency in that they could be part of a weapon combination, not all levels feature 9 weapons at the same time. Playing on endless makes this easier, but there's no telling whether the next wave of enemies will drop a different weapon.
    • 'Destructimation' requires you to defeat 20 enemies with the omega weapons, a powerup that beefs up your basic weapons. The problem is that the powerup only shows up in pandemonium mode; a mode where all enemy attacks are randomized (we're talking about bunnies with Exgal's powers here). To make things worse, said powerup will only sometimes show up on later waves.
    • 'Video Game Mastery'. No hints beyond it's something you can do in 5 minutes or less. Even if you get the right idea, doing it properly can be elusive in and of itself. And unfortunately, the creators and the community don't give freebies by telling what to do. It's something the player has to discover by themselves.note 
  • That One Boss: Every boss in Hard Mode. EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.
    • The Kumalo is likely to be your first major problem boss, due to the acid it spills everywhere when shot. You'll have to jump everywhere to avoid it. And good luck trying to beat it with no damage.
    • Burst Krijyl can be a major asspain even on normal difficulty due to the Gravity Screw and occasional screen-covering attacks. Fortunately, some of these attacks have been adjusted to be easier to dodge.
    • Yolomacho Omega may be relatively easy if you exploit his weakness... which is a MASSIVE Guide Dang It!. He takes heavy damage from headshots. Otherwise, enjoy having to shot him in the back with no room for error.
    • Yoggvals tend to be fought in small arenas, are extremely fast, and leave very little room for error and almost no time to counter-attack. Furthermore, the copy powers they drop tend to not be all that powerful. You're going to have to learn their patterns (which vary wildly) and dodge extremely well to have a chance.
  • That One Level: Hard Mode stages. Thankfully, you have a set amount of hard level skips, so you can bypass some levels should they prove to be too difficult.
    • Execution Chamber, especially on Hard mode. You are packed into a tiny box with a Harvester Orzinav, a Paradox Yinimro, and a Barrier Gehligrukai. On Hard Mode, each of these enemies are upgraded, and timed portals containing Delta Constructs show up. Even Boki expresses her frustration after several deaths.
    • Two of the factory levels on Hard, Recycling Center and Scrapyard Assault, are pains to complete as Boki. Recycling Center stands out for forcing you to fight an Inferno Dengrahx.
    • Pretty much all of the Extra Stages, for example, Vampire Castle. Limited weapon, small corridors, and the entire mission is full of Goddamn Bats and Demonic Spiders, leaves a mission that leaves very little room for error. Now, thanks to the Turbo edition, it gets even harder.
  • Underused Game Mechanic: Sort of. Not all of the basic weapons appear in levels with equal frequency nor do different combinations of them, so some weapon combinations end up being far more rare than others, especially Boki's. Some stand-out examples:
    • Magician's Wind (Quick+Tornado+Bounce) is the rarest weapon combo in the game. The only level where you can get it is Ethereal Realm (7-9), which has all 10 basic weapons (thereby allowing for all possible combos).
    • Lashing Zephyr (Force+Tornado+Bounce) and Abyssal Vortex (Wave+Tornado+Bounce) only appear in two levels each, Hangar Bay (12-1) for Lashing Zephyr and Synthesis Chamber (3-8) for Abyssal Vortex (along with the aforementioned Ethereal Realm, of course).
    • The 3-weapon combos that show up in three levels each are Relentless Storm (Force+Split+Tornado) in 76 Goldenrod Lane (10-3) and Hangar Bay, Rotary Missile (Force+Tornado+Remote) in 76 Goldenrod Lane and Hangar Bay, T-Strike (Quick+Split+Tornado) in White Rift of Seht (7-4) and 76 Goldenrod Lane, Dust Devil (Quick+Tornado+Remote) in White Rift of Seht and 76 Goldenrod Lane, Atomic Flare (Explode+Tornado+Bounce) in Pest Control (2-3) and Synthesis Chamber, Thousand Needles (Split+Lightning+Tornado) in White Rift of Seht and Hangar Bay, Electro Surge (Lightning+Tornado+Bounce) in Vertigo (9-7) and Hangar Bay, and Sky Bomber (Tornado+Remote+Bounce) in Synthesis Chamber and Hangar Bay.
    • Scatterspin (Tornado+Bounce) is the rarest 2-weapon combo, appearing only in 6 levels, and Multigust (Split+Tornado) and Storm Caller (Tornado+Remote) are in only 7 each. (For comparison, the most common, Force+Explode, appears in 34.) Weapon combos with Tornado in general tend to be uncommon, especially if they also involve Bounce, Remote, or Split. Interestingly enough, the least frequently occuring weapon combo that doesn't involve Tornado (found in 5 levels) is the Aurora Star mentioned further up this page, which became Neo Aurora Star in the final release.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion:
    • Boki is rather androgynous. Her room in the beginning sequence doesn't give any clear indications either. Her outfit has some frills, but it can be hard to notice. Some players only register she's a girl when Supreme Thremnat uses female pronouns.
    • While it's easy to assume Blade Arikan is male and you'd be correct, would you have thought Drill Arikan is female? This is only apparent in her database entry. The same can be said for Burst Krijyl, and her upgraded version, Hypercube.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome:
    • The everything-and-the-kitchen-sink style of backgrounds and enemies makes for some quirky sprites. The rainbow explosions that arise from various combinations of powers is stunning to look at, made all the more impressive that very few repeat their animations with most powers having unique visuals. The art design unites all this chaos with a simple but beautiful Matrix-esque synthetic theme. Combine all that together, and you get a creative spectacle with tons of colorful explosions and particle effects that doesn't slow the game at all.
    • Boki's sprite animations are incredibly smooth and expressive, adding little motions with her hands or turning her head when she moves. And in spite of that detail, she snaps quickly to her poses and still has tight control.


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