Little Hope’s "Bad" Ending Is Actually The Best Ending

The Dark Pictures Anthology: Little Hope has a last-second twist that may seem to come completely out of nowhere. Like Man of Medan before it, Little Hope leverages a bait-and-switch with only the subtlest telegraphing that is leaving some players feeling betrayed. If you weren’t fully on board with the way things shake out at the end of the game, you might actually find the “bad” ending to be the more satisfying — and logical— conclusion to the story. Obviously the rest of this piece will be particularly spoiler-heavy.

Before we jump in, here’s a full breakdown of the “good” ending. This summary follows the path that ends with Abraham turning evidence against Reverend Carver to prove Mary’s innocence.

Most players will likely arrive at some version of the good ending simply because Reverend Carver is obviously the villain. In your first encounter with him, he can be seen threatening Mary, telling her that if she doesn’t keep his secrets he will punish her. He uses Mary to accuse each character of communing with the devil before executing them. While the present-day characters may believe Mary is evil, guiding Abraham towards the truth (that Mary is Carver’s victim just like everyone else) is the most obvious path and the one that leads to the supposedly good ending. By absolving Mary, the demons vanish, the fog lifts, and Andrew (revealed to be Anthony) forgives his sister for starting the fire.

This ending offers Andrew a redemption arc but is virtually meaningless for the rest of the characters, who are all revealed to be figments of Andrew’s imagination. The twist reveals that the entire story was solely about Andrew, which can make you feel like all the effort you made to help the other characters grow and save them from their demons was totally in vain. It wasn’t real, so it feels like it didn’t matter. If you came away from Little Hope feeling that way, allow me to point you towards the ending you probably didn’t see — the bad ending.

For the sake of presenting the “worst” ending, let’s suppose that John, Daniel, Taylor, and Angela are all killed by their demons and that Andrew finds the gun. Along the way, the team comes to the conclusion that Mary is in fact being controlled by the devil. In the final flashback scene, Andrew and John will be the only survivors, and it will be up to Andrew to help Abraham decide what to tell the Judge. You can recommend that he condemn Mary alongside the Preacher, or if you still think you’ve got a chance to fix this, convince the judge that Mary’s poppet is her connection to the devil and that burning it will free her from his control.

Both choices will have the same effect in the present: John and Andrew will try to leave the house but as Andrew walks out the front door a pile of debris will fall in front of it, trapping John inside. John’s demon will then attack him and crush him to death. Now alone and in despair, Andrew sits down on the front porch and waits for morning. Vince will eventually find Andrew and their conversation is exactly the same as it is in the good ending, except Vince won’t say “I know it wasn’t your fault.” In the bad ending, Anthony isn’t forgiven, he’s simply told to leave and never come back. We then see the flashback of the funeral and discover that Andrew is actually Anthony. Vince tells him where he can find help, but instead of leaving, Anthony pulls out the gun and shoots himself.

Little Hope is a story about repeating trauma. The theme is most apparent in the connection between the 17th-century witch trials and the 1970s house fire. Each of the house fire victims and their 17th-century lookalikes die in the same way: Amy and Anne both suffocate, Tabitha and Tanya are both hanged, James and Joseph are both crushed, and David and Dennis are both impaled. The demons take a form that reflects the way that each person died, and if they manage to catch the present-day characters they will be killed in the same way. Anthony is reliving the night of the fire through a complicated narrative. He doesn’t realize it, but his mind has created this story to help him forgive his sister for starting the fire and make peace with everything that happened that night.

The problem is, as we know from the very beginning, Megan was under the control of the devil. Megan is seen talking to someone invisible that convinces her that her family doesn’t care about her. The voice urges her to lock her mom in the bathroom and start the fire using her doll. For a moment, we see the voice’s black, supernatural hand. This really complicates the good ending because it implies that Anthony somehow understood that the fire wasn’t actually Megan’s fault. She was under the control of a dark force. Of course, no one in Anthony’s situation would logically come to the conclusion that a child’s violent, senseless act was actually caused by an evil spirit. The good ending’s wrap up really falls apart when you consider there was an actual demon controlling Megan.

During the witch trials, it actually makes a lot of sense to decide that burning the poppet — the same doll used to start the house fire — will lift the curse. Determining that Mary is under the control of an evil man and not an evil spirit doesn’t align with what happens in the 1970s. Megan was under the control of an evil spirit, and it would make sense to try to break that connection with Mary by burning the poppet.

If you decide to burn the poppet, the pedestal will tip and the church will burn, killing everyone inside — we can assume — including Abraham and Mary. Even though burning the poppet seems like the best choice, it still leads to the house burning. Megan and Mary’s deaths are perfectly cyclical, just like everyone else.

When the house caught fire and Anthony watched his whole family die, he was hopeless. There was nothing he could do to save them now, so he ran back into the burning house, seemingly killing himself.

As Andrew sits alone on the front porch of the house after watching his classmates die, he is hopeless. There was nothing he could do to save them now, so he pulls out a gun and kills himself.

The ending that completes the cycle for every character is the superior ending. Anthony’s survivor’s guilt drove him back to his family’s house where it all happened. He should have died in the fire too, but he didn’t. He needed to relive that night and watch everyone die again before he could die with them by committing suicide. It’s not a happier ending, but it certainly the more satisfying and logical one.

READ NEXT: The Dark Pictures Anthology: House Of Ashes Coming In 2021

  • TheGamer Originals
  • PC
  • Xbox One
  • ps4
  • The Dark Pictures
  • little hope
  • Supermassive Games

Eric Switzer is the Livestream News Editor for TheGamer as well as the lead for VR and Tech. He has written about comics and film for Bloody Disgusting and VFXwire. He is a graduate of University of Missouri – Columbia and Vancouver Film School. Eric loves board games, fan conventions, new technology, and his sweet sweet kitties Bruce and Babs. Favorite games include Destiny 2, Kingdom Hearts, Super Metroid, and Prey…but mostly Prey. His favorite Pokémon is Umbreon.

Source: Read Full Article