When you woke up this morning, you probably didn’t realise what a joyous day this truly is. This is the day of bewilderment and wonder, of mystery, mirth and miasma. This is the day of Pathologic [official site].
The new version of Ice-Pick Lodge’s absurdist theatrical masterpiece won’t be ready for release until Autumn but you can download a new build of the two hour Marble Nest demo, which was released to backers late last year. It’s now free to everyone, in a new build, which you can download via Steam. I’ve played the previous build and it is everything I ever wanted from Pathologic: weird, unnerving, amusing and fantastically clever. It’s the most delicious poison of all.
As well as looking like my memories of the original game – which is to say less murky, with characters who emote more than wax dummies – this morsel of Pathologic is a more directed experience. Don’t worry; you’ll still be lost and confused, but because this is a slither of game rather than the full-on experience, Ice-Pick have been kind enough to ensure the essential essence of Pathologic is on show immediately. You won’t need to dig beneath the surface to find the gold.
In fact, Marble Nest feels like a performance, which is rather fitting considering Pathologic’s interest in all things theatrical. The game acknowledges its own artificiality and artifice explicitly, and Marble Nest is a bit like an abbreviated tour of the game’s setting and mood.
I haven’t played the new version but here’s what Ice-Pick Lodge have to say:
Not every question can be answered at once. Some demand deeper immersion.
We invite you to download and play a short game called The Marble Nest, that is dedicated to the same subject as our small study: the limits of human ability. It will give you a fuller understanding of the matter at hand.
You should accept that invitation.
If you want to know more, check out our interview about the remake and last year’s HD re-release.