Don’t walk off The Path, or I’ll wet my undies.

Some games make me angry, others don’t. Tale of Tales’ The Path resides, comfortably sheltered in a motherly embrace, in the second category. “Little Red Riding Hood” provokes fond memories, not the least as the name of my defunct cover band, but I digress. In this case, you’re in for a serious ride. Molestation included. As The Path says: “There’s only one rule. Stay on the path. The only way to win this game is by breaking said rule.” Or something. I can’t remember as I’m sitting in my shirt&ascot and tremble with fear.

This game has balls, even though the protagonists are all girls of various ages. Ages as in kids-growing-up, not a history lesson. Fine by me. All of ’em have to get to grandma’s house and all of them are bleeding idiots for straying from The Path. Probably because the player, i.e. yours truly, is supposed to make them do so. After all, you’ll only see the SUCCESS! badge – in childlike scrawling – onscreen if you’ve actually found The Wolf. You know. Man. The Male Principle expressing itself through its primary sexual organ. Ironic, isn’t it? Me, of a distinct male persuasion, leading girls to their doom because that’s the only way to progress in the game? And feeling like a major shit about it, too? That’s art, I tell you.

At least, that’s my personal interpretation of The Path. A game, I should mention, that has reaped prizes galore for being a “work of art,” so I might not be that far off. Even though I find it questionable that no boy victims characters are present. I smell the reek of simplified reality.

But bloody hells is it creepy.

I mean, you have these six girls, and you lead them through the forest. If you go straight through, guiding them savely to their grandmother’s bed, you’ll get a cut scene and a bloody huge FAILED! If you explore the woods, you’ll find golden stuff that adds up to 144. But to win each level, you’ll need to encounter perverted bastards The Wolf. You have to make them girls suffer! To make you suffer and think about all those people who actually experienced similar things in real-life.

Games as a means to public awareness? Certainly a game not meant for lightheaded entertainment.

At least not regarding the topic. The game is entertaining in a weird sort of way. You know. The same reason you watch Horror movies late at night and then complain about your having nightmares. Getting scared is fun. This game scares the bejeezus out of you, just to make you feel bad about it afterwards, too. At least if you’re a wolf man.

Not for the faint of heart. Or rather, not for the faint of imagination as The Path isn’t graphic, it isn’t violent. It’s, well, creepy, thought-provoking, and bloody scary. Figures it took a woman to pull this off. It’s only about a tenner and well worth the money, but for chrissakes, if you’ve been abused, do not download even the demo!

I just hope more people will pay them Indy Developers. Because, seriously – would you rather have disturbing games about childhood rape or the next Harry Potter fly-about? If the quality of indy games is on par with The Path, I know what I’d choose. It’s about bloody time games lost their childish aura. And Tale of Tales are right in the middle of it.

Serious stuff. For adults. With brains. And a heart. What more could you want?

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2 thoughts on “Don’t walk off The Path, or I’ll wet my undies.

  1. Pingback: Angry Sascha is angry.» Blog Archive » The Path merits a re-posting.

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