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These Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 theories took us down a rabbit hole

There are many Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 theories swirling in our heads, from cats and gas to the Prototype, Elliot Ludwig, and Poppy herself.

Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 theories - a claw crushng a huggy wuggy

The long wait is nearly over, as Mob Entertainment looks to release Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 later this year. Titled Deep Sleep, a recent trailer gives a further glimpse into what we can expect following the events of Chapter 2: Fly In a Web. Unsurprisingly, it looks as though we have a new house of horrors to explore, as it were.

Though we don’t know too much at this point, the recent trailer and previous Chapter 3 videos offer up just enough to get some theories swirling among the PT crew. You see, a couple of us are huge horror nerds who also happen to enjoy a bit of lore, which makes Poppy Playtime the perfect game for us. As such, our guide’s editor, Tilly, and I couldn’t help but put our heads together to come up with our own theories.

Before we dive into our speculations, allow me to give a brief recap on the concluding events of Poppy Playtime Chapter 2. Following a harrowing chase sequence in which Poppy Playtime’s Mommy Long Legs tries to annihilate you after cheating in a game she rigged to kill you (the hypocrisy here is astounding), the fiend in question dies in a brutal fashion, after which Poppy Playtime’s Prototype takes her remains. However, we only see its arm.

With the immediate evil dealt with, we get onto the train from the Game Station with Poppy Playtime’s Poppy, and it’s set to take us to freedom and out of the Poppy Playtime factory. Yet, the titular character has other plans, as she tells us she “was so scared she would put me back in that case, but you saved me. You’re perfect. Too perfect to lose. I’m sorry, I can’t let you leave.” She then declares that she’s never met anyone like us and that terrible things are going to happen. Yeah, sure, terrible things are going to happen, but did you have to do us dirty like that, sis?

Okay, now we’re all caught up, let’s dive into the latest Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 trailer. There are a few points of note throughout, and though myself and Tilly came to some similar conclusions, we also have some variations and different things that stand out the most. For me, it’s one simple sentence, ‘never forget the hour of joy.’ These six words appear scratched on the wall towards the end of the trailer, and you can clearly see a paw and claws writing it.

Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 theories - a cartoony cat face shrouded in shadow

Here, kitty, kitty

With that in mind, our first theory is that the main antagonist of Chapter 3 is a cat toy. The menacing face at the end of the trailer looks like the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland, but it’s giving off some serious FNAF vibes. To go with this, Mob Entertainment shared a teaser image showing a colossal cat paw crushing a poor, defenseless mini Huggy Wuggy. Wait, never mind. We just remembered what Poppy Playtime’s Huggy Wuggy put us through in Poppy Playtime Chapter 1. You go, kitty cat!

In all seriousness, it appears as though we have a sadistic toy on our hands, though Tilly and I have slightly different thoughts on the severed Huggy Wuggy head we see in the second teaser trailer. For a brief second, you can see the bloody severed head on a spike, which to me is an indicator that the cat toy is extremely sadistic, taking the heads of its victims as a trophy of sorts, which also makes the toy intelligent. Hoo boy, we’re in trouble.

Meanwhile, Tilly thinks that it’s possible this is a form of worshipping the Prototype. Our dear guides editor suspects that the cat toy is in cahoots with the Prototype, helping the experiment to collect and kill the other toys. To be honest, it doesn’t matter which way you look at it. Both thoughts are equally disturbing and equate to Chapter 3 being quite the horrific journey.

Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 theories - a gas mask on a black and white screen

Go to sleep

While we can’t speak too much about the cat just yet, we can certainly dive in with a suggestion that the cat helped to look after the children in Playcare. More than that, thanks to the gas it emits at the end of the second trailer, the gas mask from the first teaser, and the rapid snapshot of the gas mask at the beginning of the most recent clip, we can deduce that this toy is the one that used to put the children to sleep. This is a thought that both Tilly and I share. However, what struck me is that perhaps the ‘hour of joy’ refers to naptime.

The title of the chapter, Deep Sleep, most certainly lends itself to the fact the gas in question is sleeping gas. Of course, that in itself isn’t really enough to support our theory here, so allow us to back up our train of thought (we’ll try not to derail as we all did at the end of Chapter 2). At the beginning of the latest teaser trailer, we see the word ‘spectremetus.’ For those that don’t know, this means ghostly – could this mean that there’s a specter in Chapter 3? Maybe the gas allows us to see things we wouldn’t otherwise see.

That’s why my mind immediately goes. Tilly, meanwhile, couldn’t help but dissect the word even further. On the screen, if you read the letters as ‘specter metus, ’ it means specter of fear. If you read it as ‘spectrum etus, ’ it means the specter. So if you take Tilly’s additional findings and combine them with the world ‘ghostly,’ it feels fair to assume that ghosts play a part in some way. However, as the gas mask is in the background when this word appears, I believe you see the ‘specter of fear’ in your dreams.

Don’t worry, we have even more receipts to support that gas is in Poppy Playtime Chapter 3. Someone has written ‘My somniferous flock’ on the wall with claw marks towards the end of the trailer. Somniferous means to induce sleep which, once again, lends itself to the usage of gas in Poppy Playtime Chapter 3. In fact, we believe it’s a gameplay mechanic.

In both trailers for Deep Sleep, we see a gas mask, which has us thinking we need to use that exact mask in Chapter 3 to stay awake. Should we inhale the gas, it’s buh-bye. However, the gas isn’t going to be a constant thing in the next PP installment. Rather, we believe that the cat, the main antagonist of the chapter, pops up throughout the game, emitting gas (the fact the PT cats can be stinky only strengthens our belief here). The main reason for us thinking this is that the toy emits gas at the very end of the trailer, and if we’re right about it being in Playcare to put the kids to sleep, why wouldn’t it use the gas to get us?

Poppy Playtime chapter 3 theories - a picture of a child in a green frame with flowers on it

The pictures of the Children

In various shots throughout the trailer, you can see pictures of children, but there’s one that stands out to Tilly in particular. Near the beginning of the second teaser trailer for Chapter 3, you see a picture of a child on the walk, claw marks going along behind them. The girl herself appears to be very sad and solemn, though you can’t make out too many details in the black-and-white, high-contrast image. Perhaps there’s more to this child than meets the eye. Sure, they could well be an orphan from Playcare, but we suspect there’s more to it – more on that later.

That picture isn’t the only one to show up during the trailer, but it is the only one to stand alone. The rest of them share a single wall, and we have no doubt that these are kids from the orphanage. Still, looking at these images is heartbreaking due to how miserable the children look. If we had to hazard a guess, these pictures are from some time after the experiments began, meaning they’ve undergone some tests and possible torture.

If we look beyond the kids’ portraits, the frames have toys on them, though we don’t currently recognize any. But Tilly and I couldn’t help but discuss what this could mean. You see, the toys are burnt in the frames, and that’s why we can’t identify them. Is this because those toys already belong to the Prototype? We’ll go into more detail later, but we suspect that the Prototype is collecting toys, and the burned-out toys may be ones the creature has already taken.

We plan to keep an eager out for clues or pictures that may confirm this when we finally get our hands on Chapter 3. If we find a burned-out Huggy Wuggy or Mommy Long Legs, we know that we’re onto a winner.

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Elliot Ludwig’s lost family member is his child

Remember that lone image of a child that struck Tilly? Well, here we go. So, we know that Ludwig lost a family member in 1960, and that’s an event that proves costly for many people in the long run. However, we don’t know for sure who this family member is. Well, in comes Tilly with a theory that it’s Ludwig’s daughter. This theory has a lot of merit, so hear my pal out.

It could be Elliot Ludwig’s child, and Elliot Ludwig could be in/behind the Prototype. This would explain the child’s portrait remaining up despite it burning, why it isn’t cut, and maybe even why Molly Ludwig divorced Elliot Ludwig. We know that Elliot has an unnamed relative that is deceased. The game describes him as ‘divorced, but a family man at heart’. He’s also recounted as surviving a tragic loss (a family death in the 1960s), and it could support his obsessive drive to work – he’s trying to find the perfect conduit to resurrect his child.

The only issue with my theory is that Ludwig founded Playtime Co in 1930, and Molly left him in 1930, while his death happened in 1960. Maybe there was more than one death? Maybe we got the dates mixed up? Maybe Molly isn’t the mother of the child? Or perhaps the child actually grew to adulthood and was in a coma or something, then died in 1960, at around 30 years old?

Honestly, what more can I add? This is something I can see that being the reality in Poppy Playtime, and while it might not become apparent in Chapter 3, this theory is here, in writing, on this day, to show what Tilly thought. Down the line, I will either herald her as a genius or label her a nitwit.

Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 theories - a silhouette of the Prototype

We see the Prototype in the trailer

The Prototype is a bit of a terrifying enigma, one that clearly scares the toys as well as us. At the end of Poppy Playtime Chapter 2, following that horrendous chase sequence that still haunts my dreams, we manage to kill Mommy Long Legs, but not before she yells out, “No! What have you done? He’ll make me part of him.” The once-caring toy has a look of pure terror and anguish on her face as she realizes her fate.

This clearly indicates a strong fear of the Prototype. A fear with some reality, given the Prototype’s claw and arm comes out of the shadows to grab the now-deceased Mommy Long Legs. Well, that leads us along nicely to something Tilly and I noticed in the second teaser trailer – Mommy Long Legs is now part of the Prototype. Hear us out. We have receipts for thinking this.

We get a look at the silhouette of what we believe to be the Prototype in the second teaser trailer, and one good look at the figure leads to some terrifying conclusions – the Prototype quite literally makes the toys a part of him, Mommy Long Legs wasn’t lying (sucks to be you, spaghetti lady). If you look at the top left shoulder (your right), you can see what appears to be the head of Huggy Wuggy or Kissy Missy. Personally, I believe that to be the former, as does Tilly.

Secondly, if you look a little below, you can see what appears to be Mommy Long Legs’s hands – you can also see what appears to be her arm along the forearm of the Prototype on its left side. There seem to be plenty more unfortunate toys attached to this creature, but we can’t name them yet. Tilly thinks they may well belong to the line of rejected toys, such as Sir Poops-A-Lot and Surprise Hare.

Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 theories - Kissy Missy pulling a switch

Kissy Missy is our friend

The main reason we don’t think it’s Kissy Missy that belongs to the Prototype is simple, we don’t see her come to any harm, whereas the last time we saw Huggy Wuggy, the lad went splat on a giant pipe and then fell into a dark pit. Kissy Missy, on the other hand, appears very briefly in Chapter 2, helping us get through a locked gate. She then goes on her merry way with a smile on her face.

There’s no way, in our minds, at least, that there isn’t more to come from Poppy Playtime’s Kissy Missy. Whether or not she appears once more in Chapter 3, we can’t say, but we certainly expect her to play a major role in at least one future chapter.

Lord knows we need a friend in this place, and after the stunt her worse half pulled in Chapter 1, I’d say she owes us. Maybe she thinks that, too.

Poppy Playtime Chapter 3 theories - writing scratched on a wall

Elliot Ludwig is the Prototype

Okay, we need you to hear us out on this one. Ludwig is responsible for many atrocities thanks to numerous experiments resulting in toys such as Poppy Playtime’s PJ Pug-a-Pillar, Poppy Playtime’s Boxy Boo, Poppy Playtime’s Candy Cat, and many more. However, we can’t forget why he founded Playtime Co., he wanted to bring happiness to children. At his heart, Poppy Playtime’s Elliot Ludwig appears to be a caring individual. He just loses his way after the loss of his daughter (yes, we’re running with that).

However, while these experiments were his idea, and he longed to bring back his child, they got out of hand. Ultimately, while he and his team succeeded in putting people into toys, it was through a barbaric practice that had lasting and horrifying results. It could be that Elliot regrets his actions, that he realizes the hellscape that is the Poppy Playtime factory needs shutting down for good, and that requires removing the heinous toys that reside within.

As such, he became the last experiment, turning himself into the Prototype. Now, he looks to right his wrongs or put himself back together after an experiment gone wrong. Either way, there’s a lot of merit to Ludwig being the Prototype. The fact that the children appear to possibly worship the Prototype supports that – he’s the man that invented Playcare, after all.

There’s a frame in the trailer that offers some mysterious writing and drawings, including phrases such as ‘I live to serve our angel of salvation,’ with kid’s drawings saying ‘my new friend,’ ‘just like mommy and daddy before they left me’ and ‘he gives me nightmares.’ this indicates that the Prototype is a ‘he’ and that backs up the Ludwig theory. Even if we’re wrong about Ludwig, it’s interesting to think that the Prototype may be a friend to the children, which means it might not be the bad guy here.

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Poppy is the true antagonist of Poppy Playtime

Following on nicely from our last theory, if Elliot is trying to make things right as the Prototype, who’s the real villain? Well, Tilly and I agree that Poppy Playtime’s Poppy herself could be the character we truly need to watch out for. Think about it. She’s the very reason we’re here.

You, the former Playtime Co. employee, only return to the factory after receiving an ominous video and letter instructing you to ‘find the flower,’ which means finding Poppy. Could it be that she orchestrated the entire thing? Admittedly, that part seems a little far-fetched as she’s locked away in a case, but a partner toy could be behind the note and VHS tape. We need a bit more to go on to draw proper conclusions, but we think there’s more to her than meets the eye.

If we go back to Chapter 2, she may seem sweet initially, but by the end, she looks soulless. She asks if you killed her (Mommy Long Legs), and when you give confirm, she looks you dead in the eye and utters ‘good,’ showing no remorse for the loss of life. That in itself isn’t necessarily a red flag, given what Mommy Long Legs did in Chapter 2, but it’s the way that she essentially acts like a totally different person. Plus, it’s not that she’s even relieved the danger is gone. She sounds pleased instead.

Then, the only reason we’re still around to embark on the terrors of Chapter 3: Deep Sleep is that she declares us as ‘too perfect to lose’ and changes the course of the train, deterring us from the exit. While I highly doubt she’s the reason the train crashes, the doll is far from innocent, and frankly, I hope the cat toy thing puts her to sleep.

No matter which of our theories you believe, or if any turn out to be true, there’s one thing we can all agree on, Mob Entertainment is ramping up the horror in Poppy Playtime Chapter 3: Deep Sleep, and that fills the horror nerds (Tilly and I) with utter joy. Be sure to check back with us this Winter. We fully intend to revisit our theories to see if either of us got anything right.