|Former Queen of the Underground, Caretaker
|Magic, Puzzles, Baking
Toriel's primary focus is player safety. He tries to protect the player from anything that can harm the underworld. For her, the player character is an innocent child who needs guidance and care, so teach them survival tactics and basic puzzles. This guide later sets the stage for the player to navigate through the game.
Despite her protective demeanor, Toriel also encourages independence and resilience. She is often torn between the instinct to protect and the need to let the player learn from the experience. Over the course of the game, Toriel's character forms an ethical conundrum that tests the player's emotions and decisions, a recurring theme that returns in later parts of the game. The character design, the plot, and the moral conflict it represents leave an indelible impression on players, making it a cornerstone of the Undertale universe.
Toriel was the Queen of the Underworld and the wife of Asgore Dreemurr. She had a son, Asriel, with him and also briefly adopted a human child named Chara. However, after the children's deaths, Toriel and Asgore split due to their differing views on how they should treat humans. After meeting the in-game character Frisk in the ruins, Toriel immediately offers protection and advice. She illustrates puzzles and offers the child a safe haven in her home. Toriel's maternal instincts and genuine concern for Frisk's safety are immediately apparent. He resists leaving the ruins, knowing the dangers that await in the greater dungeon. This genuine concern and preemptive attitude underscores Toriel's caring nature, even if her actions are a little too safe. Despite leaving a position of absolute power, Toriel himself is not powerless. He has impressive fire magic and combat skills, originally intended to deter those who threaten Frisk and later as a test to determine his readiness to take on the rest of the metro.
Ultimately, Toriel is a beacon of kindness, empathy, and motherhood in a world that can often be dangerous and cruel. His intentions, skills, and past drive the story while sealing his place as one of Undertale's most vibrant and likable characters.
Creation and Development
According to Fox, Toriel was specifically designed to give the player a sense of maternal protection and emotional security at the beginning of the game. She delivered on this intent perfectly, as Toriel's caring nature and loving personality make her the reassuring guide any player needs at the start of their adventurous journey. A lot of thought went into creating her image. Toriel is depicted as an anthropomorphic goat with open eyes full of compassion. Fox said in an interview that Toriel's prototype was inspired by Japanese RPG characters, specifically referring to the Mother series. The design was meant to accommodate the emotions of the players, and Fox successfully did this as Toriel displayed a wide range of emotions, including joy, care and even sadness.
In terms of character development, Fox masterfully instilled elements of self-sacrifice, kindness, and love in Toriel. As a former queen of the underground, Toriel demonstrates a strong sense of responsibility, which earns the players respect. His fear of humans harming monsters reflects his caring and protective nature, a cornerstone of his character.
Toriel's character development highlights her strengths as well as her vulnerabilities. Players witness her flaws, loneliness, and struggles with her past, making her all the more relatable and real.
In summary, Toby Fox's creation of Toriel is a deliberate process involving a combination of design, emotional appeal, and detailed character development. He embodies a calming presence in the intriguing universe of Undertale, making his character one that players will remember fondly even after the game is over. Indeed, its creation and development epitomizes Toby Fox's ability to tell stories and develop characters.
Toriel, once the Queen of the Underground, left her kingdom in displeasure at the tragic outcome of the meeting between humans and monsters. Instead, he chose seclusion, spending his days in the solitude of the ruins, sparing no effort to protect those who came to the area from the potential dangers of the rest of the metro.
On the surface, Toriel can seem overly protective, often teaching puzzle lessons and insisting on manual guidance to anyone new to the Underworld. But this aspect of his personality is deeply rooted in fear born of a tragic past and a desperate desire to prevent history from repeating itself.
He is a symbol of comfort and protection, and has the skills of fire magic, which he uses to create a cozy and warm atmosphere, emphasizing his role as a guardian. When the situation calls for it, Toriel does not hesitate to use it as a defensive weapon to protect those under her care.
Beneath her motherly form, Toriel hides a lifetime of pain. However, she remains confident and stubbornly believes that a peaceful coexistence between humans and monsters is possible. With her sage wisdom, kindness, and resilience, Toriel is truly the heart of the Undertale universe.
When they need help in the treacherous terrain, the protagonist accepts the help of Toriel, who patiently guides them through the initial puzzles and traps in the ruins. Here we see that one of Toriel's most prominent characteristics is her maternal nature. She protects the character from danger and tries to create a safe place for them in her modest house in the ruins.
However, as the story progresses, the main character decides to leave the ruins and their relationship with Toriel ends. He protests, showing a surge of protective instincts at the vulnerability he believes the protagonist has. The main character faces their first boss: Toriel himself, who they must defeat or convince to continue. This event is significant in Toriel's storyline as she reveals her pain for the first time. Beneath her warm exterior, Toriel carries the weight of a tragic past: she is a grieving mother who has lost her son. Seeing the main character, he sees an opportunity to right the wrongs of his past and protect this child unlike his own.
As the protagonist progresses through the game, Toriel's character becomes more complex. He begins to understand that the main character must face the world alone. Her internal struggle resonates deeply with themes of growth, and her total relinquishment of control means she embraces the protagonist's journey.
Toriel's storyline isn't just about a mother figure guiding the main character. It's a story about a character struggling with loss, vulnerability and acceptance. Toriel's strength and wisdom combined with vulnerability and guilt make her a universal and recognizable character in the Undertale universe.
Additionally, Toriel was a welcome departure from the often stereotypical roles of female characters in video games. Rather than being portrayed as a damsel in distress or a supporting character, she is a strong, independent character with a powerful presence of her own. Her character gives players an idea of the broad scope that can encompass the representation of women in games. Toriel influenced the shift towards more diverse and prominent roles for female characters in video games.
Toriel has also become an iconic figure in fan-made content. His image can be found in fan art, merchandise, and cosplay, reflecting his popularity and the extent of his influence. As such, Toriel is a beacon of emotional depth, female empowerment, and powerful character development, and her influence on Undertale culture is deep and lasting.