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i just finished limbo. it was super hard but i did it
my story theory:
Like many people, I believe that the main character is dead and stuck in purgatory, hence the name “Limbo”. Like the player, he’s unsure of what exactly to do besides continue forward. At the same time he’s also searching for his sister, the mysterious female character in the game. I don’t think the boy actually had a specific death, but if I had to say something I imagine he either hung himself or fell (or jumped) off of a building.
The different locations are the places that were most prominent in his life. The forest that he both loved and feared, the wooden structures being either his treehouse or abandoned houses, the factories being either the city he onced lived in or the factory his guardian(s) worked at.
Many think the hostiles in the wooden structures are supposed to be natives but I always thought of them as other children. I think they’re supposed to be how he viewed other kids that, for the most part, just cruelly bullied him to the point that they nearly killed him until he lashed back.
I think the spider represents all his fears that he finally built up the strength to conquer. When it wraps him up in his web, I think that’s symbolism for when his fear impaired him ability to accomplish his goals.
The weird mind controlling things represent the pressure he felt from others, whether those people were his parents, teachers or peers.
In the end, when you break through the glass, I believe that’s representative of the boy breaking free from all that held him back in life and/or is preventing him from feeling the peace that he needs to pass on (fear, pressure, uncertainty,etc). The only thing holding him back is his desperate need to see his sister. When he finally sees her, he sees that she’s still alive and on another plane of existence (reason why her eyes aren’t visible). She’s at his grave, placing flowers. Although she’s sad, she can sense that her brother is at peace and that gives her a sense of hope that overcomes her sorrow.
The boy, now happy to see that his sister is safe, is able to pass on.