GioCities

blogs by Gio

Tagged: theorizing

gaming Boneworks' Aesthetic of Substantiation

  • Posted in gaming

If you asked me what I expect “VR” to look like, I would answer lowpoly, wireframes, etc. You know, the SUPERHOT vibe, or the crisp plastic cartoon vibe of Virtual Virtual Reality or VRChat, or maybe even a little Quadrilateral Cowboy. Boneworks is not that. Instead of freely-manipulated wireframes and polygons, we get… this:

Boneworks blue DANGER Heavy Calculation machine with barrel "Memory Dump" waste barrels, marked "256 mb storage capacity"

Boneworks’ aesthetic goes in a wildly different direction. Everything in the world is industrial and thoroughly utilitarian. There is a deliberate theme of substantiation rather than abstraction permeating the game’s design.

At first I thought it was a visual gag (“What’s this barrel full of, anyway? Oh, data, haha”), but no, it’s consistent throughout the universe and turns out to be a core part of the world.

I love this approach, both for its aesthetic effects and for its function as a storytelling device.

gaming Post-Ch2 Deltarune Theories

  • Posted in gaming

As you might know, I have a somewhat complicated relationship with Undertale theories, so for Deltarune I’m kind of forcing myself not to go too red thread board with trying to “solve” things – which sucks, because I really like solving things.

gio irl

So instead of trying to be right about the big stuff, I thought I’d just talk about some fun crack theories. For fun! For fun, I tell myself.

Susie is immune to player input🔗

There’s a lot in Deltarune Chapter 1 that implies that, unlike undertale, player choice doesn’t matter. The character you make in the first sequence is discarded, There’s even word of god that there’s only one ending to the game.

But, if you look at it, most of that involves Susie. You can’t control Susie at all for the first half of Chapter 1, only eventually getting her explicit buy-in after she decides she wants to be nice to lancer. And, of course, at the beginning of the game, she tells you directly

Your choices don't matter

Your choices matter with everyone else, though. There’s a massive branching tree of options during your battle tutorial with Ralsei, you design a thrash machine that carries over to chapter 2, and you can tell Noelle about Susie eating chalk to get an extra item in Chapter 2, just to name a few examples. Hell, your choices matter with Onionsan and Starwalker.