Backlog Club: Discover [REDACTED] And find [REDACTED] Inside’
This article is part of our new test series, Backlog Club, where we (Nintendo Life!) pick a game that is likely to be on the “game we should play” list, and then we (NL + you!) spend the next month playing it. . This is the halfway point, Part One of two, where we stop for a minute to check out the game and how much we’re enjoying it.
In October 2022, to get in the mood for Halloween, we’ll be playing internal! Part Two will talk about its companion game, Limbo…
Halfway through October, and that means it’s time for me to climb out of my summer wardrobe with shorts and sunglasses, and into my game-time wardrobe with jumpsuits and tops. seasonal depression. It also means it’s time to get in the mood Ghostly things. For Halloween. I’ve never particularly understood why anyone would want to make themselves feel scared, because I always get nervous and feel the same no matter the season, but hey! I like to engage with everything.
So this month’s Backlog Club pick is a fun, spooky haifer: Playdead’s Limboand Playdead’s internal. Although these two games are not linked (as far as I know), they are in fact brothers – both are about kids going in the right direction and encountering a lot of terrible things that want to kill and eat them. I actually played a bit of Limbo, but then there was a spider, and I got scared and stopped. I think it was within the first five minutes. I am a baby.
But, oddly enough, even though Limbo is one of those games where everyone just seems to private on every platform, even if they don’t remember buying it, I can’t find my copy. It’s probably buried on a PS4 or an iPhone account somewhere. No problem! I’ll just play Inside first, and Limbo after, close to actual Halloween.
Here’s your spoiler alert – this article is about total game. Play it, it’s only a few hours long!
Therefore! The inside begins with a young boy running away from dogs and searchlights. He may have committed some sort of crime, because he’s constantly threatened with murder throughout the entire game – we know he’s escaped and ominous forces lurk in the game’s shadows. players want him back, but obviously not that too bad, because they were more than happy to let him get crushed, attacked, exploded, and drowned by a terrible woman underwater.
The boy, hiding from said ominous forces, tries to infiltrate an ominous laboratory/factory. also committed a series of crimes, this time against humanity. They created zombified workers who happily dropped themselves into pits and against walls, solving puzzles with brute force and possibly risk-free pay. In the end, the boy met a [REDACTED], and from there, things got really… gooey? Upset? I don’t know if there are words to describe it…that’s not it.
Journalists, as I discovered, have blood love and cherish the motif of mindless workers and the magnetic mystery of [REDACTED] in Inside, because there are about ten billion think above What does inside mean?. That’s the thing – Inside refuses to tell you, there’s no dialogue, no in-game lore guide, and only the most sparse environmental clues. Even those things are explained.
I assume the designers know what they’re doing and don’t just sit in the Playdead office saying “hahaha, let’s add a bunch of chicks here but you have to put the Pied-Piper in a big machine and then they get sucked in.” you can solve a puzzle, and it doesn’t mean anything, it’s not even an omen, hahaha.” No, even the weird stuff in Inside has a Purpose and Purpose, but it’s all academic anyway – it doesn’t change the way the game plays out.
Except, in a way, it does. You see – and this will make supper-spoilery, so be warned – Inside has a secret, alternate ending that you can only access if you’ve completed the game and watched the ending with [REDACTED] above [REDACTED]. You’ll then have to find a bunch of hidden bunkers and destroy the glowing orbs inside. So far, so video games, right? You know it: destroy everything, run now, get the secret. Maybe it’s the Warp Zone. Or you can unlock the ability to play Inside Boy’s tall brother, who wears a blue shirt instead of a red shirt.
Haha! No! It’s actually a hypertext commentary on the player’s character agency, you idiot! You’ve been cheated! Nyahaha!
In the secret ending, the Boy pulls a giant plug. Why? Because that’s what you do in the game. If a game says “Press A to interact” then you do. Because interaction is fun. No question. But in Inside, when you pull that plug out, you… lose control of the Boy. He fell over, or died, or damned. You, the player, are already on the other side of that plug. Stupid.
But there’s more than that. In the normal ending, the Boy is always drawn towards the right, eventually towards [REDACTED]as if [REDACTED] controlling him. Although the Boy isn’t as heartless as the zombies we see at some point, he’s still heartless. He’s on the right track, because that’s what you are do. He’s on the right track, because you know what the game wants from you. And you, the player, do it, without a doubt, because that’s just what you do. You are a zombie. Or are you [REDACTED]? Uh. I do not know. Nobody know.
It’s refreshing and infuriating to play a game you know nothing about. I have no answers, only theories and questions. But my takeaway is that Playdead’s Inside is trying to tell a story of stewardship and control, where you’re questioned about what it means to mess around with a character, making them do whatever whatever you want, get them killed over and over again because you’re not paying attention.
There’s also no real “good” ending for Inside. The [REDACTED] endings feel unfinished, vague, even meaningless – feeling “oh. Now what?” which you are left with at the end. You didn’t win anything, you didn’t save the princess (unless [REDACTED] being a princess, but there’s no text to support that theory), you’ve just caused a big mess and now you’re out, well done. You don’t even know what [REDACTED] is, or why it wants to be free, or what is free mean for something that… lumpy.
The hidden alternate ending can be considered good (you freed the Boy from the puppet manager!) or bad (you turned the boy into just another zombie!) But what does that mean for him? player ambiguous again. Are you a monster using this Boy to your own ends? Are you really trying to help him? Does unplugging free him, or dammit him? Nobody know!
So for me, Inside is a game that pretends to be about what we see on screen, a story about players assuming a logical ending for the medium, only to be disappointed and horrified. that the ending makes no sense at all. But in reality, Inside is a game that, like modern art, is more about how it resonates with viewers than about what the work itself looks like. It’s not about what we see on the screen or what we do in the game, it’s about how players are left behind. feeling afterward. Are you a monster? Is the boy free? Is one [REDACTED] not enjoy the sweat of his efforts …?
There is no correct answer. Only the question, “why?” And, out of all the questions, that is the most important one. What Candlestick there is no correct answer. “Why” is subjective. “Why” is for you to answer. And it’s perfectly fine if the answer is, “I don’t know.”
Okay, that’s what *I* think about the ending of Inside. But what do you think it means? Any problems? Are we all in a simulation? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section. Or not. You control your own destiny…perhaps.