The origins of Gooigi, Luigi’s horrible slimy doppelgänger

The full gameplay reveal of Luigi’s Mansion 3 left us with one big question: what inspired humans to imagine the nightmare being known only as Gooigi?

Gooigi is a living Jello jiggler version of Luigi whom you can call upon in single-player, or as a horrifying co-op partner. (You should know to apologize to any friends or family members that you make play as him.) Summoning him single-player mode makes Luigi go limp and slump forward, a vacant stare across his face, as he gives his life force to this eerie body double who can walk over spikes without a care. Gooigi is bound to Luigi — he can’t open doors for himself, but he can slither down a grate or two to collect items like the slimy monster he is.

Gooigi isn’t a completely new creation. He was introduced this year in the 3DS remaster of the original Luigi Mansion for GameCube. According to game director Yoshihito Ikebata, his addition in the 3DS version happened after he’d been imagined for the Nintendo Switch sequel.

The origins of Gooigi

“After we saw the Nintendo Switch two-player functionality, I thought about making a copy of Luigi,” Ikebata told Polygon. “When two people are playing, they’ll have two Luigis, but when one person is playing, how will they control two players at the same time? The idea wasn’t to create Luigi out of goo originally; originally Next Level Games was experimenting with making the ghosts out of goo, using some jelly-like substance.”

“Jelly-like” Gooigi brings up some troubling questions. Is he trapped inside of Luigi, yearning for his own life? Does he have his own gooey brother, Gooario? Is he just stored inside the Poltergust ghost vacuum, only able to aid Luigi when ghosts are about? It’s enough to almost feel sorry for him, in the same way we pity Luigi’s continued existence as a punch-line for Mario.

Give this horrible-yet-magical blob a year, Nintendo. Or at least tell us what he’s actually made of, before he haunts my dreams forever. Maybe we’ll find out the truth when Luigi’s Mansion 3 comes out later this year.

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