- What Are Bugsnax?
- Why Does The Journalist Lose Their Job?
- Tu Quid Edas. Omne Vivum Ex Bugsnax.
- Who Were The Three Queens?
- Where Is Bronica Lottablog?
- What Does "All Life From Bugsnax" Mean?
Bugsnax is a game about mysteries, with each new revelation prompting further questions. Whether you're interested in Bugsnak physiology, grumpus psychology, or the history of Snaktooth Island, the game has plenty of content to keep you guessing.
The biggest source of questions is probably a post-credits cutscene that reveals that there's far more to the game than some light horror revelations that occur at the end of the game. And then came the Bigsnax update and the Triplicate Space. Let's dive in and explore the lore of Bugsnax.
There will major spoilers for Bugsnax, the Bigsnax update, and the secret area found in Boiling Bay.
What Are Bugsnax?
When you first meet them, Bugsnax appear to be adorable creatures that simply inhabit Snaktooth Island. They're viewed with awe thanks to the effects of Snakification (turning grumpuses into Bugsnax gradually) and how tasty they are.
It's revealed at the end of the game that Bugsnax are, in fact, parasites. Their appearance and their tastiness are an evolutionary adaptation to make them attractive to grumpuses. This is because the process of Snakification is how Bugsnax reproduce, and this can be witnessed in-game during the Escape from Snaktooth quest. If a grumpus eats too many Bugsnax during this quest, they will become entirely Snakified and dissolve into the ground.
This is similar to many real-life plants, such as strawberries, that are brightly colored and tasty to get birds and other animals to eat them. Their indigestible seeds are then excreted and the plant has managed to spread. This may be why the humble Strabby is the first Bugsnak you encounter – it's a clue as to the Bugsnax true forms.
In addition to their appearance and taste, Bugsnax also appear to have a mind-controlling effect. Lizbert relays at the end of the game that Bugsnax get into your mind, making you crave them and rely on them. There are fewer examples of this in real-world nature, but a notable one is ophiocordyceps unilateralis, known in pop science as the zombie fungus. This fungus reproduces when it gets eaten by ants, taking over their biological impulses and forcing them to find a high spot, usually on a tall leaf. Here, the ant will die, but not before sprouting a fungal structure from its body which releases spores that travel on the wind. Bugsnax do something similar by making the grumpuses rely on them – eventually, they cannot leave the island, and their only possible fates are becoming a Bugsnax through over-consumption or dying naturally and feeding the island with their bodies.
This? This is the island's true form. It's Bugsnax all the way down.
This also brings up an uncomfortable truth: Snaktooth Island itself is, itself, considered part of Bugsnax. There are still unknowns – such as whether the island is sentient and how it knows what modern foodstuffs look like when creating the Bugsnax that live on it – but it's clear that the island is its own living organism.
The island's goal – if it can be attributed that much capacity – is to draw grumpuses to it, keeping them there and using them to grow and sustain itself. It does this in very much the same way as individual Bugsnax do – it makes itself attractive for grumpus habitation. It has biomes of all kinds, from sunny beaches to snowy mountains – all on one island. It's the perfect holiday destination – apart from the fact that you can never leave and you'll probably end up being turned into a parasite.
In fact, a small detail in the secret area (see below) notes that the island is totally surrounded by shipwrecks, implying that the island has some way to keep grumpuses there, preventing them from sailing away. This may be why the Mothza Supreme was created – a gigantic flying Bugsnak that targets flying machines could harvest more grumpuses from the sky.
Why Does The Journalist Lose Their Job?
In all endings of the game, the journalist (you, the player character) loses their job after meeting up with Clumby Clumbernut again. The excuse given is that they shouldn't have gone on this ill-advised trip in the first place and that they were fired before they left the office.
Also, you're legally dead. Might wanna clear that up soon.
This line might seem like a throwaway joke, but if you manage to get the good ending to the game, a post-credits scene adds more weight to it. The scene involves Clumby talking with an unknown voice about the journalist and the rest of the Snaktooth Island survivors. The conversation makes some hints about Clumby's role in the story – she obviously knows something about Bugsnax, and it seems to be something not entirely obvious to us, the players.
The conversation ends with Clumby and the mysterious voice signing off with two lines in Latin.
Tu Quid Edas. Omne Vivum Ex Bugsnax.
When translated into English, these lines mean "You are what you eat," and "All life from Bugsnax." The exchange from the good ending was present in the initial 2020 release of the game, but it was the 2022 Bigsnax update that provides some more context and more clues as to this mystery.
There is a secret area, the entrance to which is found in Boiling Bay. It is called the Triplicate Space and it has some pretty massive revelations through the form of secret tapes that can be listened to.
The tapes were all recorded by a grumpus named Alegander Jamfoot, and he identifies himself as a crypto-snakological researcher and as a member of the Snakolytes – a secret organization. He was sent to Snaktooth by the Snakolytes to observe the Triplicate Space, a relic of civilizations past.
The secret tapes you can find in the Triplicate Space explain a lot. The Snakolytes are formed from the remnants of Grumpbeard's final expedition, which crashed onto the shores of Snaktooth Island.
If you listen to all of the tapes, the message at the end of the game is replaced with a new one, and the voice is revealed to belong to Alegander Jamfoot. With this revelation, it's obvious that Clumby is also a Snakolyte. The reason you were fired and declared dead is likely that the idea of you returning from Snaktooth was unthinkable.
Who Were The Three Queens?
With the secrets I have unlocked, the discovery of the Three Queens, I could rise to the upper echelons of the organization!
The existence of the Three Queens is important, and revealed through the secret tapes. We're led to believe that Lizbert, in her current form in the Undersnax, is the current Queen, thanks to her ability to keep her mind whilst being part of Bugsnax and her limited control over them. Also, note the missing mural plate in the image above – there are only two grumpuses depicted so far, so we can assume those are the first two Queens. There are more revelations being dropped by the next secret tape to be found.
The first Queen was wrathful. When she awakened, she wreaked terrible vengeance on those who had sacrificed her to the Bugsnax. The second Queen was benevolent. Through her guidance, the Bugsnax were pacified, and the Snaktooth Empire flourished for centuries. But as all empires do, it grew beyond her control.
Using what we can learn in the game, we can be very certain about the identity of these two Queens.
The first Queen was likely a Stone Grump. As Triffany explains in her questline, the Stone Grumps didn't preserve their dead and instead made sacrifices to the Bugsnax. If a Queen is able to retain her when taken by the Bugsnax, it would make sense that she'd seek vengeance. An annotated map in the Triplicate Space reveals that the Stone Grumps mostly migrated to the Isle of Broken Tooth, and it's implied that the vengeance the Queen wreaked was sinking the island, killing everyone. This is substantiated by a mural in the Broken Tooth temple depicting ritual sacrifice.
The second Queen is probably a Desert Grump. The annotated map in Jamfoot's bedroom states that the Desert Grumps spread across the entire island before mysteriously vanishing one day. It's possible they may have succumbed to war or internal strife, as many large empires do. This would explain the grumpus skeletons found in Scorched Gorge.
Jamfoot then goes on to state that the third Queen will be on the Snakolytes' side, and hopes for an age of peace and prosperity. This is perhaps referring to Lizbert, having taken the form of the Snakbug Queen underground. There is another candidate, however.
Where Is Bronica Lottablog?
Bronica Lottablog is a famed explorer and the grandmother of Triffany Lottablog. The last time she was seen was just before heading off on a voyage to Snaktooth Island, though Triffany can find no trace of her on the island, leading to questions as to her status.
One of the secret tapes found in the Triplicate Space mentions Bronica. It states that she has gone somewhere that you should not follow. The statement leaves it at that, providing no more details. However, after finding the triangle key which lets you get into the space, you're sent a peculiar letter that points you in the direction of Boiling Bay and the space's entrance. The letter is signed B, simply B.
The only "B" we know is Bronica Lottablog.
Could it be possible that it's actually Bronica who is the third Queen? Consider this: Bronica may be a member of the Snakolytes, which would explain why Jamfoot states that the third Queen is "one of [them]" and why she went on an expedition to Snaktooth in the first place. It would also explain how Bronica is able to tell we picked up the triangle key but cannot reunite with her granddaughter, Triffany.
What Does "All Life From Bugsnax" Mean?
There is a big deal made about the journalist and the other survivors knowing "the truth" about Bugsnax at the end of the game. It's implied that this truth would be so shocking and controversial that it would cause instability, ruining the Snakolytes' vision of peace and prosperity.
A big hint as to the nature of the truth is in the second half of the Snakolytes' signoff: Omne Vivum Ex Bugsnax – All Life From Bugsnax. If you take this statement literally, it could mean that Bugsnax – as the grumpuses have termed them – is in fact, the progenitor of all life. It is the mother organism from which every living thing, including grumpuses, descended.
Supporting this theory is the fact that grumpuses and Bugsnax are so biologically compatible. Grumpus bodies readily accept Bugsnax as a food source and use them to undergo snakification, something that could hint at their biological connection.
This could be why the island seeks to absorb all grumpuses into itself – it's possible that it wants all life to come back to the source. The wider implications of this revelation remain to be seen.
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