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20 Games Like 'Undertale'

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Indie video game developer Toby Fox ended up creating a modern-day classic when he introduced the world to Undertale. The game’s retro art style, quirky cast of characters, memorable fourth wall breaking moments, heart-tugging plot developments, and so much more helped it reach surprising levels of popularity amongst those who played it. 

 

The full sum of Undertale is made up of several interesting parts inspired by comparable games and even TV shows. There are RPG elements within it that rely on more active button inputs, bullet hell shooter mechanics, and a unique approach to humor that elicited laughs from everyone who experienced it. 

 

If you’re on the lookout for a slew of games that match some or even all of the features that make Undertale so incredible, then the 20 following titles are worth spending some time with.

1. 'DELTARUNE Chapter 1'

Since this first pick on our list comes straight from Toby Fox, it’s only right that it takes the top spot here. The very first half of DELTARUNE is already out and available on a number of current-gen devices. And just like Undertale, it features the signature hallmarks of Toby’s smash hit RPG. DELTARUNE contains the visual stylings, musical inspirations, and sense of humor that Undertale hits on so well. And the battle system employs a whole lot of bullet hell dodging and the option to resolve your issues passively/violently to boot.

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2. 'EarthBound'

One of the main games that inspired Toby Fox to craft Undertale is Nintendo’s one-of-a-kind SNES RPG, EarthBound. Ness and his young crew of world saviors set out on a trippy adventure as they look to defeat the evil extraterrestrial entity known as Giygas. EarthBound lets players experience that otherworldly mission firsthand through a traditional turn-based battle system and a cast of characters that get embroiled in some hilarious hijinks. But there are also a number of poignant moments that will stay with you long after you beat this game.

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3. 'LISA: The Painful'

LISA: The Painful is an RPG that’s placed smack dab in the middle of a post-apocalyptic setting, so its incredibly dark humor is par for the course. As Brad Armstrong, you traverse a dangerous wasteland on a quest to locate his adoptive daughter. The journey you embark upon throws some heavy choices your way, which determines the wellbeing of you and your various allies. The game’s 2D side-scrolling exploration and turn-based combat system are fun in their own right, plus the macabre character sacrifices and perma-death mechanics makes every choice you consider a visceral one.

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4. 'Rakuen'

While Rakuen doesn’t adhere to the combat mechanics featured in Undertale, it sticks close to the heart-tugging storyline that Undertale’s player base regularly reflects on within Reddit gamer threads. Rakuen (which translates to paradise from Japanese) takes you on an emotional journey as you control a young boy who sets out to aid his fellow hospital patrons. In order to do that, you must enter a fantasy realm inhabited by their alter egos and confront challenging dungeons, puzzles, and text-based mysteries as you try to help them find closure within their lives. The heartwarming adventures within Rakuen will hit every one of your emotions and enchant you from start to finish.

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5. 'Spec-Ops: The Line'

At first glance, you’d be forgiven for thinking that this military-themed third-person shooter has nothing in common with Undertale. But spend some ample time with it and you’ll begin to understand why we featured it on this list. Spec-Ops: The Line plays with your expectations and shocks you every step of the way. And just like Undertale, its overall theme and shocking plot developments make you question your violent motives by the time it reaches its conclusion. The action itself is solid at best, but the horrors of war and the mental anguish that comes with it are what makes Spec-Ops: The Line such a poignant experience.

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6. 'OneShot'

OneShot falls into the category of games that defies player expectations by breaking the fourth wall. There are two characters to keep track of during your time spent with it – a young cat-like child named Niko and yourself. Your trek through OneShot mainly entails solving puzzles and embarking upon fetch quests. But the most intriguing aspect of this game is the way in which it pushes you to step outside of its 2D game space. You’ll regularly venture away from OneShot’s in-game world onto your main computer screen and into its inner files. Moving between the game’s inner sanctum and the one that exists outside of it on your computer’s home screen is a truly mind-bending endeavor.

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7. 'Grimm’s Hollow'

While short in actual game length, Grimm’s Hollow offers a monumental adventure that caters to those who appreciate Halloween-esque themes. The game puts you in the shoes of a young girl named Lavender, who awakens to find herself in a town inhabited by the souls of the dead. Lavender’s reincarnation and newfound role as a Reaper seems unconvincing to her, which pushes her to pursue her missing brother and find a way out of her new hometown. Grimm’s Hollow’s quirky search and rescue mission will place you in numerous combat encounters with ghostly foes and push you to interact with the spooky denizens that inhabit the town of Hollow. Be prepared to embrace your new role as a Reaper and navigate the many dangers awaiting you in the afterlife within Grimm’s Hollow.

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8. 'Heartbound'

Here we have another RPG title that centers on a complex storyline. And most importantly, it tackles an assortment of serious mental issues such as depression, anxiety, and fear. As a boy who’s on the lookout for his missing dog, you set out into a world where everything you do plays a huge part in how the story unfolds and how the world itself dramatically changes over time. When the times to enter a battle, Heartbound relies heavily on active player participation during signature minigames that pop up for each enemy you face. Heartbound places special importance on every minuscule and major decision you make, so tread wisely.

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9. 'NieR:Automata'

Yoko Taro is a beloved gaming industry personality who’s known for incorporating some pretty heavy themes into his projects. With his unconventional approach to storytelling put in place alongside PlatinumGames’ penchant for excellent action gameplay mechanics, NieR:Automata ended up becoming a surprise hit. If you still haven’t given it a shot, you’re truly missing out. There’s more to it than meets the eye – although it may seem like a simple story of androids versus a machine army, there’s so much more bubbling underneath the surface. NieR:Automata’s trippy plot has to be fully experienced through multiple playthroughs. And thankfully, its fun mix of fast-paced melee combat and bullet-hell shooter segments makes those playthroughs insanely fun and rewarding.

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10. 'To the Moon'

To the Moon presents you with a plotline in which you are given the opportunity to fulfill a dying man’s wish by creating artificial memories. And in order to accomplish that lofty goal, you’ll need to take control of two doctors who set out to explore the memories of their soon to be deceased patient. Moving through his mental fragments is handled via adventure game exploration and extensive item gathering/manipulation. To the Moon will most certainly hit you in the feels as you relive a dying man’s memories and look to reconfigure them in a way that allows him to live out his life’s goal.

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11. 'Finding Paradise'

The two memory altering doctors from To the Moon make their return in this quality follow up, Finding Paradise. If the story of this game’s predecessor made you feel some type of way, then your time spent with this sequel will do the same. This time around, you’ll navigate the memories and look to fulfill the final wish of a new patient named Colin Reeds. The twist to this new assignment is a tricky one, however – now you’re responsible for changing something yet changing nothing at all in the process. Finding Paradise features everything that made To the Moon such an unforgettable experience.

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12. 'OFF'

OFF has managed to assemble a sizable fan following due to its unmistakable quirkiness sprinkled throughout its plot, characters, and overall atmosphere. It employs classic RPG combat mechanics but switches up the process by letting party mates land an attack as soon as their cooldown meter is full. Which means you’ll have to make some pretty quick decisions in the heat of battle. As an entity known as The Batter, you’re put in charge of entering a collection of trippy zones and “purifying” them along the way. This holy quest is certainly a peculiar one, which should make Undertale fans feel right at home.

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13. 'Citizens of Earth'

Developer Eden Industries clearly has an appreciation for EarthBound, which can be seen and felt throughout every bit of this outlandish game. And since Undertale also takes its inspiration from Nintendo’s eccentric RPG, Citizens of Earth is similar in nature to what both games have to offer. Citizens of Earth makes you step into the role of the newly elected Vice President of Earth. A ton of problems come your way now that you’ve stepped into a new position of power. Your charisma and leadership skills are used to recruit everyone you come across, who are used to do battle against a slew of strange foes. Citizens of Earth is a decidedly off the wall experience.

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14. 'Citizens of Space'

The sequel to the last game on this list takes you from Earth’s surface and transports you into the cosmos. As a matter of fact, Earth goes missing and you’re tasked with finding the missing pieces of your home planet and making it whole once again. And the best way to do that is by recruiting a bunch of space buds and taking them with you on your spacefaring journey. As the newly appointed Ambassador of Earth, you’ll need to restore your home and get to the bottom of its sudden disappearance. SEGA has to be given props for giving Eden Industries a shot by publishing both of their unique takes on RPG’s.

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15. 'Yume Nikki'

Yume Nikki is not for the faint of heart. It focuses on horror-based story elements and goes a lot darker than Undertale in comparison. The game’s foreboding dream state may spook you, but don’t let that keep you from analyzing every portion of its world. There are no turn-based battles to speak of, but Yume Nikki will still manage to grab you with its main gameplay loop. You’ll interact with certain characters, collect items known as Effects, progress to new areas of your dream locale, and come upon several mind-bending secrets. Yume Nikki may be a more action less undertaking, but it’s still a redeeming one.

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16. 'Shin Megami Tensei IV'

Did you enjoy those portions of Undertale where you engaged in conversations with the beasts you did battle with? The Shin Megami Tensei series takes that concept a step further by letting you talk to an assortment of demons in a bid to bring them over to your side. The demons that do join your party can then be used for demon fusion activities, which lead to your main hero being able to create even more powerful allies over time. Shin Megami Tensei IV keeps this franchise concept in place and transports players to the Eastern Kingdom of Mikado to engage in some extensive demon hunting/collecting. As for this entry’s story, it’s expectedly heavy as your decisions have a huge impact on the fate of the world you’re meant to protect.

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17. 'Cave Story+'

The battles within Undertale regularly tested the twitch skills of its player base by forcing them to dodge a flood of bullets. If the masochist within you got a kick out of those challenging bullet hell moments, then Cave Story+ should greatly appeal to you. Your goals within this game are simple – run, jump, fly, and shoot to your heart’s content. Speaking of shooting, there’s a whole lot of it to enjoy here. Your dodging skills will surely be put to the test within this retro callback to the side-scrolling shooters of old.

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18. 'Contact'

Japanese development studio Grasshopper Manufacture is known for crafting the types of games that step outside of the box with its complex story and gameplay concepts. Back in 2006, it introduced Nintendo DS owners to a unique RPG called Contact. What makes it stand out and perfect for Undertale fans is its penchant for breaking the fourth wall – other players within your party and the professor that’s central to Contact’s storyline acknowledge your active input. Using the DS, you actively control a young boy named Terry that’s out on a mission to help the professor retrieve the cells he needs to power his ship and leave a strange planet. The battles you’ll find yourself embroiled in and the wild plotline you’ll be treated to makes Contact an RPG with a completely different approach to traditional genre mechanics.

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19. 'Pony Island'

The next game on our list (within a list, funny enough) of fourth wall breaking experiences similar to Undertale is Pony Island. While it may look like a cutesy romp through a fantastical land as a pony, its inner workings make way for a far more sinister adventure. Evil supernatural forces lie at the heart of an old arcade cabinet and they’re dead set on claiming your soul. The soul of a previous player who succumbed to those demons aids you on your journey as you look to defeat the devil at his own game. Pony Island’s premise is certainly out there. You’ll most likely enjoy your time spent with it, especially since it throws in some endless runner and shoot ‘em up mechanics to keep you entertained.

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20. 'The Stanley Parable'

And now we’ve arrived at the final game on our list that speaks directly to the player and does its best to break away from traditional gameplay setups. The Stanley Parable is an adventure game that plays you up as a silent protagonist whose ongoing choices are narrated by a humorous narrator. There are several paths to take as you look to follow the directions of your unseen narrator or avoid his suggestions altogether. The Stanley Parable is a mind-bending expedition with a high replay value factor, so it’s worth playing through again and again. It may not feature many of Undertale’s gameplay systems, but The Stanley Parable is just as much of an unforgettable mind trip.

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