For my final #Spooptober pick, I wracked my brain a bit to come up with a character that was both made in the image of something I truly find scary and turned out to be friendly in the most surprising way possible. It turned out that my brain didn’t have to work that hard, because one recent encounter immediately popped out – Mora, the most terrifying (and for good reason) boss of Ori and the Will of the Wisps! No really, she’s really something else! In a game that’s full of big, scary creatures that make Ori look helpless, Mora really takes the cake.
While I’m (mostly) fine seeing bugs and arachnids in their natural environments, all bets are off once they enter my house. In those cases of infiltration, coming across unexpected spiders always sends me off the rails. I’ve become better about not immediately finding the closest heavy object with which to squish them, but when I do find one, it has to go, one way or another. It therefore tracks that I’m not much of a fan of video game spiders, either. Though, because they’ve become so ubiquitous in games, they don’t make me run away in terror. Rather, spider sights and fights are always just unpleasant and make my skin crawl.
When playing Ori and the Will of the Wisps and upon reaching a series of caverns under the once-living-giving Spirit Willow called Mouldwood Depths, it was obvious that Ori would be facing off with spiders in some manner. The Depths’ dark, jagged spaces were filled with webs and decaying bug carcasses, after all. And sure, there were indeed a few regular, smaller spider enemies hanging around, but those little things were definitely not responsible for all the ensnared carnage. No. All that had to have been caused by something big. Something reeeeaaallly big.
Sure enough, Ori finds that “something big” in Mora, a humongous spider living in Mouldwood Depths! When Ori reaches her, it’s clear she’s become subject to the glowing, green, fungus-like Decay, and the corruption drives her to fight. The battle is a tough one, requiring Ori to utilize every available power to quell Mora’s rage, and, as well, free her from the Decay. Upon her defeat, Ori receives an important shard called the “Eyes of the Forest” and an explanation as to why Mora had stolen it – she was trying to protect her and her children when the Spirit Willow began to fade. Unfortunately, the Decay reached her anyway, she became corrupted, and she took the “Eyes of the Forest” to banish its light. Without Ori, who know what would have happened to her and her cavalcade of spiderlings?
After curing Mora, if the player wants, Ori can talk to one of Mora’s, um…kids. It’s extremely grateful to Ori for saving its mother and glad that Ori helped bring life back to the Depths. I never thought I’d feel the warmth of happiness from a spider, so…bravo, Ori and the Will of the Wisps. Bravo. Still, the scene was a little weird in that creepy-crawly way, but it was also very touching. Sure, it was good to see Mora, the big, giant spider that she is, free from that nasty, terrible fungus. Don’t know that I’d wish that fate upon my worst enemy. Now, I’m not going to say that after my experience with Mora I’m going to trust spiders in a more generous capacity than I currently do, but I am willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. And a chance to make out of my house alive.