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Impressions & Commentary: The Coffin of Andy and Leyley Chapters 1&2

CW: Discussions or Incest, Cannibalism, emotional abuse, manipulation, and domestic abuse. Also there are spoilers.

Time to capitalize on a trend everyone! The Coffin of Andy and Leyley is certainly something, and that specific something that it is, is called a video game. If you’ve heard of this game, you’ve probably heard that it involves incest, or may have heard it referred to colloquially as “The incest game.” People who call it that really have to be more specific, because “the incest game” could refer to most of the Fire Emblem series. It could also refer to Drakengard, or to My Little Sister Can’t Possibly Have A Hemorrhoid?! Broaden your horizons people!

And to think that something as tame as incest and cannibalism resulted in this game’s developer getting doxxed. Oh kids these days, too focused on their Skibidi Toilets and Digital Circuses, their avocado toast and Rock’em Sock’em robots, that this is their limits. Back in my day, people used to share snuff films with each other as jokes, and we li… actually no that was kinda fucked up. Probably why Gen Z became so puritanical, almost as if it’s some sort of backlash to a generation of people who grew up on South Park and Eminem, and their takeaway from both of them were that it’s cool to be as offensive as possible and to not give a fuck about other people.

Anyway, I can criticize culture like some sort of cultural critic or something, but it’s important to note that developer Nemlei was not even doxxed by deranged antishippers or anything (though they did spread her doxx around), it was actually done by a group of far right lunatics who thought she was trans, because fascists see degeneracy and instantly assume trans, even though so many of their own are also deranged perverts. I’m just going to say that everyone reading this should go ahead and buy The Coffin of Andy and Leyley right now without even taking the merits of the game into account.

The game does an excellent job at emphasizing the utter shittiness of Andrew and Ashley’s life prior to the events of the game.

Before I begin this impressions piece, I’m going to temporarily halt the goofy bullshit just to be real with you all. I don’t care what your reason is, if you choose to share Nemlei’s doxx around, attacked fans of this game, or try to justify the harassment that Nemlei has experienced to any extent, even on a “both sides” level, you are human cancer. This is why I’m suggesting people purchase this game even if it does not appeal to them, because this appalling behavior alone should result in The Coffin of Andy and Leyley becoming so grotesquely successful that every gibbering puritan who bitches about this game is traumatized by it. You have demonstrated a willingness to side with actual fucking Nazis to endanger someone on the basis of perceived gender identity, all because you thought her game is icky. You people are subhuman, and people should buy this game to spite you. Think of it as if you’re donating to a person’s Gofundme. It can be bought here.

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, I can say, this is a good game. The game has continuously kept my attention, the pacing is excellent, and it does an impressive job at making me genuinely invested in the misadventures of two cannibalistic siblings who clearly want to fuck but only do so in one ending. A lot of people have given this game shit for its DeviantArt esque approach to promotional material, and the extent to which Nemlei is totally on board with all the fetish shit, but to level with you all, I think this game would be much less interesting without it.

The Coffin of Andy and Leyley works so much better as a dark comedy than it would as a traditional RPG Maker horror game where everything is played straight. If they tried to make this game more like Corpse Party or Mad Father, this game would be such a drag. Imagine a game that wanted us to connect with Ashley on the merits of her personality and character rather than because “evil women sexy.” Granted I did kinda start to connect with her during that dream sequence in Chapter 2 because I to have a serious fear of abandonment and dependency issues.

Andrew was speaking about if the two of them jumped out of the window together and hit the pavement, yet it also sums up their relationship in a nutshell, they can’t escape each other.

The setup to the game was very effective at emphasizing the crapsack life that Andrew and Ashley live prior to their killing spree. The Coffin of Andy and Leyley opens with the two of them quarantined in some shithole apartment due to having consumed contaminated water. Not only did they have to deal with three months of isolation, but they are also starving because the apartment staff doesn’t give them any food. On top of all this, their abusive parents are barely in contact with them or show any interest in their well being, and contact with the outside world is deliberately cutoff.

This is a very effective way of getting the player into the headspace of these two unstable lunatics right away, and it’s a good thing since most people won’t be able to relate to seeing their neighbor getting killed via a botched demon summoning, and thinking “we should totally eat his corpse!” Anyway, this leads to one of the wardens checking in on the dead neighbor, and then Andrew killing the warden to protect Ashley.

Before I continue, I just have to make mention of how fucking hysterical it was to see Ashley nagging at Andrew for not liking the taste of the neighbor’s cooked flesh. Seeing Ashley proclaim “I made it with love!” in reference to the corpse meat she cooked while also acting like a jealous spouse to her brother is one of the most ridiculously absurd things I’ve ever witnessed, and I have so much love for this game because of it!

OMFG

This leads to the two sneaking around the building and discovering that the “parasites” thing was bullshit. It turns out that they are intentionally kept and starved until death so they can use their bodies for black market organ sales. As an aside, I love how the game was self aware enough at this obvious twist that there isn’t even any reaction when they find out. I guess that being captured by a human trafficking ring isn’t all that special compared to seeing someone summon a demon and cannibalizing their corpse, while dealing with your grotesquely manipulative and abusive sister who you also want to shag.

Anyway, to give a very condensed version of the rest of chapter one, they kill two other people while escaping the facility they were trapped in, but not before Andrew almost kills Ashley because she would not stop accusing him of trying to pork an attractive female captive that he was holding hostage. Chapter One is easily the shorter of the two chapters that are available, and most of the eventful shit happens in Chapter Two. Also the demon gives Ashley a charm that allows her to see premonitions when she sleeps, because there’s no way they could escape the hit man in chapter 2 without plot armor.

Chapter Two starts with them on the run from the law since “a demon did it” is not likely to fly in court, and them staying at a cheap apartment. Ashley then has a premonition about the hit man that I just mentioned two lines of text ago due to the charm mentioned four lines of text ago… from the line I’m currently on… no I’m not revising this to make it less confusing… fuck now it’s five lines ago!

Anyway, they draw the hit man away and kill him before the REAL main event; Andrew and Ashley deciding to pay a visit to their parents. After an awkward family reunion where Andrew and Leyley pretend to not know that their parents sold them out to a black market organ cartel to profit off of life insurance, they eventually say fuck it and hold them at gunpoint before tying them up in their basement.

I am so mad that drama prevented me from posting this on Christmas Day, cause that would have made this so much funnier.

The following scene results in some split paths which will effect the ending of chapter two, and the direction of chapter three in their playthrough. Note that chapter three isn’t out yet, but Nemlei has stated that there will be enough differences between the two paths that they are basically two different chapters. These two paths diverge based on how you choose for Andrew to respond to his mother’s attempts to convince him to turn on Ashley.

I can say for certain that this is the most clever variation of the “villain offers to let you join them in order to save their own skin” trope. While it is quite clear that Mr and Ms Graves are abusive scumbags, there is very much a reason for Andrew to turn on Ashley. This game makes no reservations about reminding the player what a monster Ashley is. This was demonstrated earlier in the game via a flashback to when Andrew and Ashley were kids. Back then, they used to be closer because Mrs Graves asked Andrew to take care of Ashley, which he took to heart.

Unfortunately, like many parents, Mrs Graves didn’t anticipate Ashley turning out to be malicious sociopath. This lead to an incident in their childhoods where Ashley roped Andrew into luring a fellow classmate into a remote area, tricking her into hiding inside a chest during a hide and seek game, and locking her in. Andrew wants no part of it, but he’s been conditioned into being such a doormat towards Ashley’s bullshit that he puts up no means of resistance.

My little sister can’t be this demonic!

Their prank goes about as well as you’d expect, and the classmate suffocates to death. This traumatizes the fuck out of Andrew, so his caring little sister Ashley decides to use this to further manipulate him, saying that she’ll rat him out for his involvement if he ever leaves her or abandons her. All of this stems from the fact that Ashley is emotionally dependent on Andrew, and is incredibly jealous of him being stolen. This continued on into their adulthood where she harassed Andrew’s ex Julia to such a traumatic extent that Julia broke up with him just to get Ashley to fuck off.

One thing I have to give this game props for is that this dynamic between Andrew and Ashley is surprisingly realistic. This type of shit is precisely what a toxic and codependent relationship would look like in real life. There’s a common trend in media with incest to fetishize it as some sort of “uwu sweet saccharine forbidden love,” when in real life, that shit doesn’t happen. I hate to break it to you, but if you were very close to your sibling and had a healthy relationship with them, you typically don’t want to fuck them. The Westermarck effect ensures of it.

It is not unheard of for family members with toxic or distant relationships to bypass the Westermarck effect however, as they don’t have that close familiar bonds. Despite the fact that I’m a survivor of incest, I’ve often found myself not disgusted by the concept of consensual incest. When I say that consenting adults should be free to do whatever the fuck they want in the privacy of their own home, I’m not just talking about shit like gay people existing. I think that applies even to unhealthy things, and it’s only a problem when said unhealthy habits effect others.

In regards to The Coffin of Andy and Leyley, there are a ton of accusations that the game is promoting incest, and the people who make these accusations are brain dead. Just a fun fact for you all, any time someone’s line of attack against media with taboo content is that it “glorifies” or promotes obviously bad thing because said media doesn’t lecture you on why incest or cannibalism is wrong, then this person is clinically brain dead and media illiterate. I often do my best to not go full boomer, but Gen Z’s puritanical bullshit is utterly toxic. We’ve somehow regressed into a generation of miniature Jack Thompsons and Tipper Gores who would have been the first people tut tut at the people who did the stonewall riots for being bad for optics.

It is disgraceful how many queer people have forgotten that the queer movement was founded on degeneracy and kink, how easily they can forget that their own existence is considered no different from the very degeneracy they condemn, and that all these conservatives use the same fucking arguments as them. The entirety of fascism is based around the belief that it’s okay to point at weird yet harmless people and go “these people are disgusting, and they should be hurt for no other reason than we find them disgusting.” And these fucking puritans are intellectually no different from fascists in this regard, and as was seen with both Nemlei and also the harassment I experienced, these people have shown a willingness to collaborate with them.

Because of that, I’m in full support of Nemlei being as blatant and unapologetic with this game’s fetish material as possible. In fact, I think there should be even more fetish material, and that Nemlei’s future games should deliberately cross as many boundaries as possible. Oh, it seems I let myself get off on a rant, my apologies. It absolutely will happen again.

But yeah, you don’t get to complain about the incest fetishism when you go into a game that’s fully upfront about what it is, and outright warns you if your actions will send you straight to Alabama. You have no one to blame but yourself if you don’t like what you see. It’s actually only one of three endings, but it’s the one most of you coomers are here for so let’s talk about it first.

Oh wait. I didn’t talk about the scene where Andrew and Ashley killed and cannibalized their parents. I’m impressed that they managed to make such a macabre scenario as funny as they did. Seeing Mrs Graves come to the conclusion that Andrew and Ashley were fucking and that reaction of pure disgust, all while Ashley decides to roll with it to further embarrass him. And their dumbass dad being like “but I thought you were supposed to be masturbating!” I cannot get over the contrast between this utterly juvenile and crude humor combined with a scene that would be considered horrifying in any other media. God I fucking love this game.

Yet there is still the right amount of genuine horror to it. The game leaves it up in the air whether or not Mr and Mrs Graves really intended to sell Andrew and Ashley off to have their organs harvested, which adds an added element of unease to when they are murdered. It leaves the underlying anxiety that “maybe they had the wrong idea,” which makes the depravity they engaged in have this alternating sense of catharsis and unease. And that’s the true brilliance of this game. It isn’t just a simple “parents bad lets kill them and eat them simulator,” and contrary to what hack critics say, it doesn’t “glorify” shit. It provides just enough for sane people to have uncertainty, and feel like they may have gotten in too deep.

It’s so common for people to forget that people who commit depraved criminal acts are real people, and that what can start out as a desperate response to a dire situation could spiral into outright evil and depraved. But today’s culture doesn’t want to admit that healthy people can do shit like this, so they instead claim that anything that acknowledges the humanity of these people is a “glorification” of it. After all, if everyone who does things that are sick and depraved was always too far gone, then no one has to ever reflect on whether their own behavior is abusive or could lead down a bad path.

Anyway, about that fucking incest ending. It was fucking hysterical. The look on Andrew’s face as he saw that vision, and that goofy ass music. It was all so priceless, and also hot. Yes, I’ll admit it, and you can’t do shit about it because I’m literally an incest survivor. It’s my trauma and I’ll fetishize it however the fuck I want. You’re not my fucking therapist. If this makes you mad then just know that makes it even hotter. Maybe you can call me out on Tumblr and draw more traffic to this site. It’s your move cunts!

I don’t really have much to say about it from a critic’s standpoint. You basically get what you came for. If you wanted to coom to it, you get that, and if you played up to this point to be offended by it, you get that to. I’m not going to say there’s anything deep about it, aside from how deep Andrew is into Ashley’s cooch. Whether or not there’s anything interesting about this route will depend on Chapter 3 when it comes out. I am personally hoping they try and do something interesting from an artistic perspective, as opposed to it just being fetish fuel, but I’m way past the point of offended if they do, because it will at least be entertaining fetish fuel.

That brings us to the game’s OTHER major ending. Well there is one standard ending that leads into the burial route without explicitly stating that Andrew and Ashley bang, but that’s less interesting. What is interesting, however, is the ending that leads to the decay route. If you choose to sympathize with Mrs Graves attempt to talk Andrew out of his support for Ashley, it will lead to things becoming much more cold between the two. It will lead to a frightening scene of Andrew trying to murder Ashley, set to an incredibly foreboding and appropriate track titled “Dark Bells.”

Genuine chills…

What makes this scene so frightening is the fact that prior scenes have made it clear that this is something Andrew has been considering since childhood, and that there’s every bit as much context that could hint towards this as towards the aforementioned incest ending. It’s almost telling that people consider the ending where Andrew and Ashley end up fucking is worse than the one where Andrew decides to make like the Marshall Mathers classic “Stan” and drive off a bridge with Ashley in the trunk of his car. That’s not to say it isn’t fucked up that that they are banging, but that incest ending is the closest we see to them living a happy life, and most people would rather they both be dead than let them have that.

Fuck, I didn’t even think of that before I started writing this. That’s the magic of the writing process, you go in expecting things you never expected to, and honestly, it makes me think a lot more highly of this game than when I started. That being said, it all depends on how this game follows things up. I’ve seen some games with amazing setups and shitty endings before, but I really hope that this game delivers on that.

As it stands now, The Coffin of Andy and Leyley is mostly significant in the context of today’s political climate. There is a ton of reactionary puritanism, and because of it, this game got shrouded in controversy. And this took a game from on otherwise unknown developer and gave them a ton of support from the people who are most opposed to reactionary puritanism. This turned The Coffin of Andy and Leyley into a culture war talking point, where one’s support of it depends entirely on which side they are on.

You just know that this line of dialogue was not just intended for story context.

I have made it no secret to which side of this conflict I’m on, but that’s because I’ve always gone to bat for art with dark and taboo subject matter. Compared to stuff like Euphoria, Maggot Baits, Dead End Aegis, Gore Screaming Show, and Kara no Shoujo, The Coffin of Andy and Leyley is quite tame actually. I would also consider each of the above to have far more engrossing, emotional, and artistic narratives than this game as well. That is not to say that Andy and Leyley should be discounted though.

It’s quite clear that the main appeal of this game is humor and the sense of catharsis it provides people with traumatized upbringings. A lot of vulnerable people have been willing to see themselves in this game, despite the fact that nothing about it is made to sound appealing or glamorous. And that’s precisely why it appeals to such people, because trauma survivors like myself and many others are so fucking tired of vapid, saccharine inspiration porn that claims your trauma is only valid if you come out of it as a perfect and pure victim that can be used to demonize “the bad people.” I say fuck that, and if you have a problem with it, then I have three words for you!

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11 thoughts on “Impressions & Commentary: The Coffin of Andy and Leyley Chapters 1&2

  1. Hi! I was hoping for this piece since december last year.
    To be honest, I didn’t expect you to take this game so positive. Actually, I was afraid for you to hate it.
    Anyway, I like your blog a lot. Since I found it on pinterest because of a pin that leads to me your Euphoria’s review I have read some or your blogs and I apreciate your critical analysis and the deep detail you look into the games you play.
    I’m sorry for my bad English writting if you had problems understanding my comment.

    I will be waiting for the next reviews to come!

    1. Thank you! I’m glad you enjoyed my writing, though the fact that you were afraid I wouldn’t like it indicates that you do not know me very well 😛

  2. I’m a big fan of your interesting insights on dark content, and have been reading your reviews for a while now; but as a fellow incest trauma survivor, I’m gonna have to strongly disagree with you on the presentation of the incest in this game. It struck a particularly sensitive aspect of my trauma to a sickening extent, the way siblings neglected by their parents can become more twisted together. An actual sickening extent, as it made me nauseous. I don’t see the inclusion of it as the problem, but the portayal the creator was going for did not seem to pan out to much of the audience. No one deserves to be doxxed but the game deserves a lot more criticism on the incest aspect since it comes across as highly romanticized to such a wide swathe of people. I specify romanticized over fetishized because I won’t be speaking here on the coping mechanisms of other trauma survivors who do fetishize their experiences to regain a semblance of power over their situation. The imagery in the game does not portray the incest in a critical light from anything I’ve seen, and trust me when I say I’ve not been engaging with the violent and nuanceless “anti” side of this argument. Just observations I’ve had. I scrolled for hours through pages upon pages of the game content that the game’s fandom drools over online when they go on and on about how incredible their abusive relationship is. I have no reason to believe the message will shift in chapter three because of the creator’s attitude. None of this dissuades me from your other content reviews but I think the mark was missed a bit here.
    Side note: Respectfully, I’d recommend pairing up with an editor to fix your typos before you publish, picking out stuff like the misuse of cheep/cheap and role/roll among others. It comes across as posting your first draft more often than not.

    1. I appreciate the feedback, though I think we will need to agree to disagree on this one. I don’t think it’s fair to turn the audience perception of a game in spite of in game content contradicting their message against the game itself. There are a ton of media with anti-conservative messages that are adopted by idiot conservatives (Think of how many conservatives will unironically stan The Punisher or Homelander), or how many people believe that Lolita is pro-pedophillia. The subject of how the fandom reacts to the game’s content, I could only assume that people who drool over this toxic relationship are either those who fetishize toxic relationships due to trauma or paraphilic reasons, which I don’t think is innately harmful. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone argue that Andrew and Ashley’s relationship is healthy or anything to strive for. I don’t feel that it should be necessary for a work of fiction to beat the viewer over the head with the fact that “incest is bad” when any sane person should know this already.

      Also, I can’t tell if you intended to say this or not, but it comes across as if you are saying you have not played the game yourself (this is based on the, “does not portray the incest in a critical light from anything I’ve seen” bit, which implies that the parts you’ve seen are from places other than the game itself) and are instead going off of what others have said and what you’ve seen. In which case, having actually played through the game myself, I’m not sure how I’m supposed to respond given that my piece directly includes anecdotes of the game saying incest is bad. One of my points was quite literally about how much more realistic of a portrayal of incest this game has than other media that DOES romanticize incest (and lord knows I’ve covered plenty of those). The game’s own Steam page describes it as “Cannibalism and codependency! Caught in an extremely toxic sibling relationship, our awful heroes must survive starvation, as well as each other. How will you escape death and the consequences of your actions?” I fail to see how this is romanticizing. The only thing I could interpret as this is the fact that Nemlei doesn’t seem to mind people fetishizing it, and has been willing to lean into that for marketing purposes, but that doesn’t really have to do with the game itself.

      From my perspective, it comes across like your issue is with the existing fanbase of the game being a bunch of coomers who think it’s hot, and feel that this is making light of and trivializing a serious real world issue that you’ve personally experienced first hand, which in turn reflects horribly on the game itself, since its developer doesn’t seem to care how their fanbase acts. In regards to that, there’s nothing I can say that makes this feel better for you, but it’s important to keep in mind that people respond to trauma in very different ways. Personally, I think the disgust that this game has prompted is immensely more disrespectful to survivors of incest and childhood abuse than the game itself. It literally turns everything into nothing more than “look at how gross and degenerate this game is, and look at these disgusting people who think it’s hot” without any attempt at understanding why this game exists or why so many people feel seen in a game about incestuous cannibals, and whether it says something about our society does to people.

  3. Hello! I finally found your blog again! I stumbled across it after finding your erotica posted here a couple years ago. Why did you remove it? :,( It left on such a cliffhanger… I actually collect erotica as a sort of side hobby/special interest, so if you have any recommendations on stories/books, my ears are open. Anyway, I think your blog is super cool! (Maybe there will finally be a chapter 6?)

      1. Thank you so much! This helps me out a lot. I’m actually in the process of drafting a piece on queer inclusion in contemporary erotica, and given you’re essentially an author in the genre, I’d love to ask you some questions related to the subject. That is, only if you’re ok with it! If you are, I can reply with my email. If not, then I hope
        you have a great day and keep writing! 🙂

  4. I watched a playthrough of this game on youtube a while ago and it was a very unhinged experience. Ever since I keep hearing about it everywhere. Thanks for making such a detailed post about it, this was really interesting to read!

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