The Genocide run is the route to one of the three main endings of the game Undertale. Undertale is a role-playing video game created by American indie developer and composer Toby Fox.
Toby Fox developed Undertale independently and only outsourced a few additional art to other artists. In the game, players control a human child who has fallen into the Underground, a large, secluded region underneath the surface of the Earth, separated by a magic barrier.
As the child, the Undertale player meets various monsters during a quest to return to the surface. The game is played mainly through the combat system, the player will have to navigate a hail of bullet attacks by opponents while attacking and killing monsters which the player also has options to let live.
Each of these choices, killing or releasing a monster, will affect the game and lead to the dialogue, characters, and story changing based on outcomes. Undertale was released for Microsoft Windows and OS X in September 2015, and later for Linux in July 2016. When it was released it was lauded for its writing, thematic material, intuitive combat system, musical score, and originality.
The praise directed at its story, dialogue and characters would result in several nominations and accolades including a Game of the Year nod from several gaming publications and conventions. It sold over a million copies.
The Genocide Run
In the Undertale game, there are three paths that you can go through; Pacifist, Neutral and Genocide. The Genocide run can be defined as the “No Mercy Route,” where all encountered monsters are killed. This route’s ending can occur without prior completion of the game. The Genocide run requires the player to kill every possible monster in the Underground.
To get to the Genocide Route, the player would have to have killed every enemy in every region: the Ruins, Snowdin Forest, Waterfall, and Hotland. (The CORE is a sub-region of Hotland.) Once the protagonist completes a Genocide Route, subsequent True Pacifist Route endings are altered – even after a True Reset.
It begins in the Ruins where the player will intentionally trigger encounters and kill monsters until encounters with monsters no longer occur. After killing all monsters in an area, encounters still occur, but monsters do not appear.
In a font size smaller than usual, the battle text reads “But nobody came.”, a narrative cue which can also occur in a Neutral Route when you kill all monsters in an area. After seeing the message, the music in the area will change to a distorted ambient track. Passing some points in a run can invalidate a genocide run.
Things to Note about the Genocide Run
- In the Genocide Route, all overworld songs are lower pitch, slower versions of their Neutral and True Pacifist Route counterparts. Should the player cease meeting the requirements for a Genocide Route at any point, they revert to a Neutral Route where the unaltered soundtrack plays.
- Kill counters for different areas have different requirements. If certain events are triggered before clearing an area completely of monsters, the protagonist is automatically sent back to a Neutral Route.
- Once a Genocide Route is aborted, it cannot be returned to without reloading to a SAVE before it was aborted or resetting entirely.
Kill counter requirements for the different areas in Genocide Run
- In the Ruins, you will need to destroy 20 enemies before the encounter with Toriel at her home. The recommended area for grinding is the first room with the leaves and a save point
- In Snowdin, you will need to kill 16 enemies before the battle with Papyrus. Here the recommended area for grinding is the area right before Snowdin.
- In Waterfall, you will need to eliminate 18 enemies before the battle with Undyne. The recommended area for grinding is in the room with the waterfall and the flowers.
- In the Hotland/The Core, you will need to murder 40 enemies before the battle with Mettaton. The recommended area for grinding is to the left of the room with the door that leads to Mettaton. This place is great for grinding quickly and safely, because there is a save point in the room to the right.