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The Path (Tale of Tales)

Page history last edited by josh@thoughtlost.org 13 years, 10 months ago
  • The Path by Tale of Tales
    • The Path is another experiment from Tale of Tales to challenge the boundaries of gameplay and evoke emotive responses, this time in the horror genre.  The underlying premise is taken from the age-old story of Little Red Riding Hood.  You control one of 6 sisters (which range in age from child to teen to young adult) and are told that you must get to grandmother's house at the end of the path.  You are also told that you must not stray from the Path.  This is obviously tempting and actually should be done to fully experience the game.  The reason to stay on the path is that there is a "Wolf" in the woods somewhere and you should not be tempted to interact with it.  Of course, if you make it to grandmother's house without meeting the wolf you are told that you have actually Failed.  So, of course you play it again, yet the next time you stray from the path.  The mechanics of the path are quite simple, you can walk (albeit slowly) and run through the environment.  Interacting with objects/people/things in the world is done simply by letting go of the controls and if you can interact with that object then your character performs some action.  They call this the Drama Queen control system which is intended to create many different types of possible interactions and make you feel that the character is in control and you are just providing suggestions.  This is also useful since you may run up to an object and expect the character to interact in a specific manner, yet a totally different interaction is performed.  The aesthetics of the Path are wonderful.  The game is beautiful and expansive.  When you are on the path, the sun is out and "happy" music is being played.  As you go further away from the path, the overall look becomes more dreary, the music changes and adds to the creepiness of being in the woods alone.  Random sounds appear adding to the experience, the sound of chains, axes, etc. make you feel uneasy.  Objects can be interacted with (but only by specific characters) and each time a snippet of narrative is shown on the screen.  This allows you to know what the character is "feeling" at that instant.  The more you interact with objects, the more narrative emerges.  Of course, you may meet the "Wolf" who can take various forms (an actual wolf, a handsome man, a young girl, etc..) which changes depending on which sister you choose.  After interacting with the Wolf the screen fades and you appear at grandmothers house, walking very slowly with your head drawn, shoulders down, looking very sad and walking in the rain.  Very interesting experiment in emergent narrative and emotive responses.  I thoroughly enjoyed this game.  Each time you play it, you will have a different experience which is amazing.

Comments (1)

robbway@comcast.net said

at 1:08 pm on Jul 16, 2009

That is a very nice writeup. Having played through every character, the game evokes a variety of emotions. When the game starts, you will feel impatience. If you go directly to grandma's you will feel complacence and then betrayal, because you lose by following instructions. Throughout the game (roughly in order): insolence, amazement, curiosity, lonely, friendship, surprise, fear, a false sense of security, lying to yourself, horror and/or disgust, and confusion. It is very good at taking a sylvan atmosphere into horror.

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