Hello! It’s Christophe Galati, back-back-back again to tell you more about the story of Tako-San, a.k.a. Mr Tako. Despite the cute aesthetic, his world is far from being a happy place.
I wanted the game to tell a dark story, but one without a real bad guy. Instead, the conflict comes from two species who are fighting for what they believe is right, even if it hurts the other one. I’m a big JRPG fan, and even though the game started as an endless runner (!), it ended up becoming more like an RPG trapped in a platformer instead.
Now, I’d like to tell you about the background of Tako-San’s world, so if you don’t want any story spoilers, you should probably skip to the next section!
Octopuses vs. Humans
Long before the events depicted in Save me Mr Tako, octopuses ruled the world. This lasted until a curse forced the octopuses to live in the sea and caused them to die after giving birth, leading to their decline. Humans became the new dominant species, creating kingdoms and expanding their own culture over centuries, erasing the octopuses’ glorious past.
One day, an octopus called Bako met a fairy who granted him the ability to breathe out of water, allowing him to visit the human world. He had dreamt of this legendary land, but found it to be a place where humans fought each other and tried to kill him. He returned to the ocean with some knowledge that allowed him to create helmets for an octopus army, thinking that his people could rise again if the humans were to decline.
As the game begins, a full-scale war is about to break out between the humans and the oppressed octopuses. You play as Tako-San, a kind and helpful octopus who tries his best to never feel hatred for anyone. Caught in the middle of the conflict between the two species, you must search for a way to save both octopuses and humans from destroying each other. That’s why the game is called Save me Mr Tako.
Even though you play as an octopus, the majority of your quest takes place across the three main human kingdoms:
• Belys: A small, neutral state by the sea, composed mostly of beaches and forests.
• Sarona: A kingdom ruled by a warmongering barbarian who turns his very strict and religious country into a battlefield filled with graveyards.
• Ydor: A community dedicated to art and life, in a rich valley surrounded by snowy mountains.
Themes in Save me Mr Tako
For me, game design is a therapeutic process that I use to help me heal from my own personal traumas. Many of the story elements in Save me Mr Tako were heavily influenced by the November 2015 Paris attacks, which happened while I was designing the city of Sarona. I had already developed the game’s central theme of a clash between two worlds that don’t want to understand each other, and these sad real-world events really resonated within me. Tako-San’s story became a way for me to talk about issues like obscurantism, racism and tolerance. I also think it’s very important to help increase the diversity and representation in games. I hope my games will help people, and make others think. On a related note, I just learned that Save me Mr Tako has been nominated for an Emotional Games Award in the category of “Best Emotional Mobile & Handheld”!
Are you ready to discover Mr Tako’s world and all of its secrets? I think you’ll see many things you weren’t expecting in the game, and I can’t wait to see your reactions. I’ll be back soon to bring you more news about Save me Mr Tako!