Undertale Creator: It’s OK If People Dislike The Game

Undertale Creator: It’s OK If People Dislike The Game

As I mentioned in my Undertale review, the game’s fans can be a bit… insistent. “You can’t dislike it! That’s not possible!” That kind of thing. I get it. To an extent, I am one of those people. But, as these things often do, it’s resulted in some heated exchanges.

Undertale fans are dedicated. They adore the game — and with good reason. The RPG is equal parts charming, heartfelt, and hard-hitting, with hidden depths that turn the genre on its head. That dedication has resulted in varying degrees of controversy, however. You might remember that Undertale recently won GameFAQs’ notorious Best Game Ever poll, deluging the internet in brackish bile and salty tears for days. Harmless as it all was, some people still got kinda mean on both sides of the “Does Undertale actually deserve to win this ultimately frivolous popularity poll?” debate.

That’s just one example. Basically, some people really love Undertale — to the point that they have trouble accepting that it just isn’t some people’s cup of tea — and others really dislike the game, those people, or both. Taking to Twitter, Undertale creator Toby Fox addressed the impassioned reaction to his unexpected smash hit of a game:

All of which strikes me as pretty darn reasonable. Like any game, Undertale — a great but ultimately imperfect work — is worthy of criticism. In fairness, I’ve seen plenty of excellent discussions about what Undertale does and doesn’t do well, but I’ve also seen a few shouting matches, some dogpiles on people who simply aren’t in love with the game. Those moments suck.

Fox is in kind of a crazy position in that — though he collaborated with a number of people — Undertale is primarily his work. Suddenly, almost overnight, his tiny pixel RPG is the talk of, well, everybody. He unknowingly purchased front row seats to the internet at its most internet-y: ebullient adoration, inevitable backlash, backlash to the backlash, a splash of ideologically-driven arguing, and so on, and so on, and so on. All in the span of a few months.

To top it all off, Undertale fans seem to care more than fans of other things — to an extent that might seem unreasonable to outsiders. Undertale has resonated with many people — myself included — in intensely personal ways, so it makes sense that they’d have a hard time not taking critique or outright derision personally. Doesn’t mean it’s necessarily a reasonable response, but it does happen.

It’s good to see Fox reminding people that, hey, Undertale isn’t perfect. It’s fine that some people don’t dig it. Sometimes people lose perspective — especially in the screaming death argument catch match that is the Internet — and they need a wake-up call.


      • Well, I’m not really. I mean, I don’t mind them, but I have a suspicion if I played this I’d be reliant on the charm or the emotional depth, or all the other things people mention about this game that I do not quite yet understand to get me through it.

  • I finally dig in and bought Undertale from the steam sale. Only 20% off but good enough for me to dip in for the so called “GOTY” best indie game. Played it for 30 minutes and got bored. Why was this game such a great game again?

    • I guess a lot of it depends on how you connect to the characters, if you don’t it probably won’t do it for you at all, but if you do then the game is something else. For me the game was absolutely perfect and the personal thing about affecting you emotionally is a huge part of that. I tend towards anxiety, depression and introspection and there’s something about this game, particularly towards the end of the first half and everything afterwards that hit a chord only maybe 2 other films have and no other game has. As the Kotaku review for the game mentioned I felt a better person for playing the game.

    • Could probably try and make up your own mind about it rather than try and establish some kind of “objective” opinion of the game. Kind of narcissistic to discount so many perspectives in favour of nothing.

      • That’s the thing, I felt nothing from the game. Story was not capturing, puzzles was bad, battle is not fun.

        I have never read any full review of the game and merely caught on the title as it has been getting a lot of attention and one of the best game of 2015.

        I felt really disappointed that such a game was getting mad amount of positive review.

  • I want to check it out, partly based on the hype it’s received. Unfortunately, the art style makes my eyes bleed, and no amount of cleverness will counteract that.

    • I understand what you mean about art styles making it hard to play a game. I tried playing Final Fantasy VII and stopped after a few hours because the visuals just hurt to look at.

  • I have it but struggle to get into it. I really like the idea of it, its cute and weird but I find JRPG combat and random battles slow and frustrating these days.

  • Haven’t got it yet, I’m not always keen on retro JRPG style games.

    But in the Internet people find it hardest to control their closed mindedness and can’t control themselves when someone has different opinion regarding something they love. A different opinion is wrong, offensive and stupid. I’ve had that many times, no matter how logically I point out why I dislike something – such as how the new Star Wars is just too derivative of the original, more so than most Hollywood remakes, with less interesting and less developed character and locations taking the place of their counterparts from the original.
    I can’t even remember the names of the planets that are the new Tatooine, Hoth and moon of Endor, and can’t remember the name of the new Emperor guy or the new Tarkin. It’s a shame Poe was relegated from the new Han to the new Wedge so Rey can be super powered and stronger than Luke in 6 the same day her Obi-Wan told her merely that the force is real. It’s a mindless action film wrapped in a Star Wars plot and constant Star Wars imagery.

  • Don’t have it, don’t really know much about it other than that it’s a game so I’d say the creator’s hope that people can play it unspoiled has been achieved.

    Based on the reputation I might look at its Steam page someday but not really fussed about it.

  • Contrary to popular (relative to these comments) opinion, I loved the game. The writing and characters are fun, the story is neat, the music is boss and I’ve never had an issue with retro graphics (contrast to bad graphics, which are just bad).

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