A leitmotif (/ˌlaɪtmoʊˈtiːf/) is a musical "phrase" or melody, re-used in multiple songs to associate a tune with a person, event, or place.

The extensive use of leitmotifs in Undertale's soundtrack and other sound files helps create a nostalgic mood for the game and often evokes emotional responses in players. Toby Fox has stated that the majority of Undertale's soundtrack was composed using reiterations of free SoundFonts and synths.[1]

Attempts have been made at documenting all of the leitmotifs used in the game; players frequently find new connections, and it may be impossible to list them all conclusively. Every single piece of data is open to interpretation and any change should be explained in this page's history description.

Timestamps found below are approximate to one second and are sourced from this playlist, which reflects the timing of the official soundtrack.

Once Upon a Time

Leitmotif once upon a time.png

This leitmotif can be considered as the main theme of Undertale. It is the most common melody of the game, playing in seventeen tracks.[2]

Flowey

Flowey has two leitmotifs relating to him.

Your Best Friend

Flowey leitmotif.png

This leitmotif occurs in seven songs, and one unused audio file.[5]

Your Best Nightmare

This leitmotif is used in four songs and one unused audio file.[7]

Toriel

Leitmotif toriel.png

Toriel's theme. This song is used in three songs and one song from the demo OST.[8]

Ruins

Leitmotif ruins.png

This leitmotif can be considered as the Underground theme, appearing in eleven official songs and 2 unused sound files.[9]

Enemy Approaching

Leitmotif anticipation.png

This leitmotif is related to enemies or dogs. It appears in eight songs and one unused song.[10]

Ghost Fight

Leitmotif ghost.png

This leitmotif is used in six songs.[13]

Sans

Leitmotif sans.png

Sans's theme. Found in four songs,[14] one of which is never played in the game.

Papyrus

Leitmotif papyrus.png

Papyrus's theme. Found in four songs, one of which is never played in the game.[15]

Snowdin

These leitmotifs have two separate meanings to them.

Hopes

Leitmotif hopes.png

The theme of Snowdin. Used in six songs.[17]

Dreams

Used to represent friendship, love or happiness. Used in eight songs.[18]

Undyne

Leitmotif undyne.png

Undyne's theme. Used in seven songs and one unused song.[19]

Another Medium

Leitmotif another medium.png

Theme of Hotland. Used in five songs.[21] The theme originates from the "Doctor" leitmotif from Homestuck.[22]

Alphys

Leitmotif alphys.png

Alphys's theme. Used in four songs and one unused song.[23]

Mettaton

Mettaton's themes.

It's Showtime!

Leitmotif showtime.png

Mettaton's main theme. Found in four songs and at least one other sound file.[24]

Hotel

The bassline of It's Showtime! is present in three Mettaton-related songs. It is considered as a separate leitmotif, as it has an entirely different melody.

Metal Crusher

Leitmotif mettaton.png

Mettaton's battle theme. Used in three songs.[25] This leitmotif originates from Noisemaster's Theme from Cucumber Quest. [26]

Asgore

Asgore is related to two leitmotifs. Both are used in his fight theme.

Determination

Leitmotif determination.png

This motif is used in two songs, one unlisted song and an unused audio file.[27]

Bergentrückung

Leitmotif bergentrückung.png

This motif is used in three songs.[28]

Asriel

Leitmotif his theme.png

Asriel's theme. Used in five songs.[29]

  • Memory
  • Undertale 0:00-2:47, 3:27-6:21 (at times, the melody is barely perceptible among overlapping music. It is heard on a guitar for most of the song, becoming hard to distinguish after 3:27 ; the tune switches to a more audible sample after 4:42, to a quiet background piano at the key change around 5:20, and back to the second SoundFont at 5:57)
  • The Choice (imperceptible), as it is a part of Undertale which contains the barely-audible Memory
  • Finale 0:40-0:57[30]
  • His Theme

Other

Minor Leitmotifs

Similar Samples

References

  1. most of undertale's music was made using free soundfonts + synths but everyone likes it. that's cool - Toby Fox, Twitter
  2. (Undertale) Once Upon a Time Leitmotifs - YouTube
  3. Undertale Main Menu Music Easter Egg - YouTube
  4. I heard that if you sped up “The Choice”... - Tumblr
  5. [Version 2] Undertale - All songs with the "Your Best Friend" melody/leitmotif - YouTube
  6. Undertale OST "But Nobody Came" Sped up 1200% - YouTube
  7. Undertale - All Songs With the "Your Best Nightmare/You Idiot" Leitmotif
  8. Undertale - All songs with the "Fallen Down" melody/leitmotif
  9. [Version 2] Undertale - All songs with the "Ruins" melody/leitmotif
  10. [Version 2] Undertale - All songs with the "Enemy Approaching" melody/leitmotif
  11. ibid. beginning at 2:46
  12. it's all connected - YouTube
  13. Undertale - All songs with the "Ghost Fight" melody/leitmotif - YouTube
  14. Undertale - All songs with the "sans." melody/leitmotif
  15. Undertale - All songs with the "Bonetrousle" melody/leitmotif - YouTube
  16. "one of the catchiest songs in the OST, reduced to an eldritch horror." - Undertale OST - Bonetrousle (GENOCIDE) Extended - YouTube
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 Undertale - All songs with the "Snowy" melody/leitmotif - YouTube
  18. Undertale - All songs with the "Snowdin Town" melody/leitmotif - YouTube
  19. Undertale - All songs with the "Spear of Justice" melody/leitmotif
  20. Possible Leitmotif? - Youtube
  21. Undertale - All songs with the "Waterfall / Overworld" leitmotif/theme ✔️
  22. See Patient
  23. Undertale - All songs with the "Alphys" melody/leitmotif - YouTube
  24. Undertale - All songs with the "It's Showtime!" melody/leitmotif
  25. Undertale - All Songs With The "Metal Crusher" Leitmotif/Melody
  26. Cucumber Quest - Noisemaster Theme - Youtube
  27. Undertale - All songs with the "Determination" melody/leitmotif - YouTube
  28. Undertale - All songs with the "ASGORE" melody/leitmotif - YouTube
  29. Undertale - All songs with the "His Theme" melody/leitmotif - YouTube
  30. Music similarities 2: Undertale: Finale and His theme - YouTube
  31. Undertale 'Barrier' sped up - YouTube
  32. W. D. GASTER "Mus_Smile" Dissected!" - YouTube
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