Despite Bugsnax‘s adorable art style, cute characters, and catchy theme song, the whole game has a mild undercurrent of body horror, as you transform characters’ body parts by feeding them Bugsnax. An early concept posted by developer Young Horses shows the studio almost leaned right into that horror element, requiring players to peel and prepare the adorable Bugsnax before feeding them to characters.
The video is more than a little alarming, showing the player pulling the wings off a pair of flying olives and yanking out the creature’s long tongue in order to plate it up. The video also shows the capture of a Pinkle, with preparation requiring the player to pluck off its pickle legs one by one.
An early idea for Bugsnax was that in addition to catching them, you’d have to peel and dismantle their bodies before serving them to your friends! #Bugsnax #ThrowbackThursday pic.twitter.com/CZG1ddGJlG
— Bugsnax (YH Games) (@YoungHorses) February 25, 2021
It’s not surprising that the developers decided to can this mechanic, as reviewers would have been far less likely to recommend the game for kids with dismemberment as a core part of the gameplay.