"The friendly RPG where nobody has to die!"
Undertale's Release Trailer
Undertale (stylized as UNDERTALE and formerly UnderTale) is a role-playing game developed independently by Toby Fox with additional art by Temmie Chang in the Game Maker: Studio engine. It was released for Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X on September 15, 2015, for Linux on July 17, 2016, for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita on August 15, 2017, and for Nintendo Switch on September 18, 2018. The game has been met with overwhelmingly positive reviews.
There's also a special collector's edition sold exclusively on Fangamer (the Nintendo Switch edition can also be bought at select Best Buy stores), which includes the game's soundtrack and a music box locket, among other things.
Undertale is a role-playing game that utilizes many of the traditional mechanics normally seen in role-playing games but with a number of differences.
The battle system in Undertale is turn-based and seems to be heavily inspired by bullet-hell games – in particular, the Touhou series – where the protagonist's SOUL, represented by a red heart, must avoid attacks unleashed by the opponent. As the game progresses, new elements are introduced, such as colored obstacles which require the soul to stay still or move through them, and some battles (including some of the Boss battles) which change the way the heart is controlled. During the player's turn, they have the opportunity to fight the opponent (involving quick-time input), perform actions that can change the opponent's mood, use items, and show mercy by sparing the enemy, which ends the combat if the correct actions have been used. Killing an enemy will reward EXP and LV, but neither are given if they are successfully spared; GOLD is earned in both cases. The game has a large emphasis on the morality of killing and sparing the Monsters encountered, as the player's actions determine what ending they will receive. Unlike traditional RPGs, it is possible to complete the game without ever killing a single monster.
The overworld mostly consists of puzzles that the player must solve to progress. Monster battles can also be seen as puzzles, requiring the right set of actions to resolve the fight peacefully. However, should the player decide to commit to murdering every monster they encounter, almost all the puzzles are disabled, and the player is required to grind to progress the game. Unlike traditional RPGs, grinding (under a neutral setting) and backtracking are not mandatory, and almost no side quests exist within the game.
The game is also known for its dialogue that is witty and humorous as well as having drastic alterations based on the player's actions, and occasional breaking of the fourth wall. While killing/sparing results in notable dialogue changes, the most prominent alteration involves the manipulation of the game's SAVE feature, particularly quitting or resetting the game: almost every major character possesses meta-knowledge, remembering actions the player had performed in previous playthroughs.
Long ago, two races ruled over the Earth: Humans and Monsters. One day, a war broke out between the two races and after a long series of battle, the humans were victorious. The greatest of their magicians confined the monsters to the Underground with a magic barrier. However, this barrier is not perfect.
Many years after the war, in 201X, a human child climbs Mount Ebott for their own mysterious reason. It is said that those who climb the mountain never return. The child discovers an enormous hole in the mountain and falls in. After that, the story begins.
The protagonist starts off their adventure in the Ruins and soon meets Flowey, a sadistic flower who attempts to kill the protagonist for his own amusement. He is thwarted by a motherly monster named Toriel, who teaches the child how to solve puzzles and resolve conflicts in the Underground. After a boss fight with her, she allows the child to exit the Ruins, ending the demo.
The earliest known screenshots of Undertale were posted in a joke thread in the PK Hack section of Starmen.Net, where Toby "Radiation" Fox claimed that the game would be an EarthBound ROM hack called UnderBound 2.
The first known demo of Undertale was sent to the video game merchandising website, Fangamer, to play back on May 2, 2013. The game was met with positive reviews, so a public demo was later released on May 23, 2013.
Undertale was later funded through a kickstarter campaign with a goal of $5,000. It ended up receiving $51,124 from 2,398 people. Due to the short length of the demo, Fox expected the game to be completed as early as August 2014.
There have been five patches for Undertale so far; the current version is v1.06 on all systems except for Nintendo Switch, which is currently at v1.11.
Undertale received "universal acclaim" reviews on Metacritic and is tagged as a "Must-Play" game receiving a metascore of 92/100 on both PC and PS4, while its Nintendo Switch release gets a metascore of 93/100.
- On two preview images of the official website's "about" section, the character's name is Taco.
- The page title of the website's "demo" section is "UNDERTALE Delicious Free Sample."
- If one tries to check the official website's HTML, they will find this message by Toby Fox, which says: "What are you doing? Looking for secrets? Don't put your nose where it doesn't belong. Or you might learn something you DON'T like... Hee hee hee."
- "Every capitalization is canon. Undertale. UnderTale. UNDERTALE" - Toby Fox. January 14, 2015. Twitter.
- "Office Cam tomorrow at 8:30pm EST! We'll be playing @FwugRadiation's game: Undertale" Fangamer. May 2nd, 2013. Twitter
- "undertale.com The demo is out." UnderTale. May 23rd, 2013. Twitter
- Metascore for Undertale on PC, Metacritic, Retrieved February 25, 2020
- Metascore for Undertale on PS4, Metacritic, Retrieved February 25, 2020
- Metascore for Undertale on Nintendo Switch, Metacritic, Retrieved February 25, 2020