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There is one rule in the game. And it needs to be broken. There is one goal. And when you attain it, you die. Six sisters live in an apartment in the city. One by one their mother sends them on an errand to their grandmother, who is sick and bedridden.
Release Date: Mar 18, 2009
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Buy The Path

$9.99

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Buy Tale of Tales Complete Pack

Includes 3 items: The Graveyard, The Path, Fatale

Recent updates View all (8)

The Path Mac Update!

February 8th, 2014

We've been working hard to get this update out to you! This version fixes compatibility issues with OSX 10.9 Marvericks. But also issues with graphics bugs and sound issues. So if you are playing on Mac and still have trouble please let us know.

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ToT Anniversary bundle with The Path prototypes!

December 19th, 2013

It's our 10 year anniversary today and we're celebrating with a bundle of experiments and prototypes. You can pay what you wish for it (with a minimum of $5 USD) until Christmas. Among many other exclusive items, the bundle contains two early prototypes of The Path (in one of which you can play as Charming Wolf and see how he runs on all fours!).
Get it here: http://tale-of-tales.com/anniversary

10 comments Read more

About the Game

There is one rule in the game. And it needs to be broken.
There is one goal. And when you attain it, you die.

Six sisters live in an apartment in the city. One by one their mother sends them on an errand to their grandmother, who is sick and bedridden. The teenagers are instructed to go to grandmother's house deep in the forest and, by all means, to stay on the path! Wolves are hiding in the woods, just waiting for little girls to stray.
But young women are not exactly known for their obedience, are they? Will they be able to resist the temptations of the forest? Will they stay clear of danger? Can they prevent the ancient tale from being retold?
The Path is a game about growing, about changing, about making choices, about accepting the consequences of these choices. A game about playing, and failing, about embracing life, perhaps by accepting death.

Key Features:
The Path is a short horror game inspired by older versions of Little Red Riding hood, set in modern day. The Path offers an atmospheric experience of exploration, discovery and introspection through a unique form of gameplay, designed to immerse you deeply into its dark themes. Every interaction in the game expresses an aspect of the narrative. The six protagonists each have their own age and personality and allow the player to live through the tale in different ways. Most of the story, however, relies on your active imagination.
The Path is designed with accessibility in mind. There are no ticking clocks or monsters to defeat. No hard puzzles will ever halt your progress. Most activities in the game are entirely optional and voluntary. The player has all the freedom in the world to explore and experience. The Path is a Slow Game.
While The Path does not contain any graphic violence or sexuality, it does allude to these themes. The overall melancholy mood of the game and the potentially unsettling course of events, make The Path unsuitable for children. Despite of its origins in fairy tales, The Path is decidedly a game for the mature mind.
The Path is an independently created video game. It was developed with digital distribution in mind. But despite the small file size of the installer, the game features a complete realtime 3D environment that can be explored through third person navigation. The characters in this virtual world, including the player's avatars, are governed by a form of artificial intelligence that gives them some autonomy. As a result, nobody knows exactly what you will encounter on your journeys.
Next to the multi-layered stylized graphics, The Path features a continuous soundtrack composed by goth rock diva Jarboe (ex-Swans). In fact, there are hardly any sound effects in the game. Instead the music is continuously changing according to what is happening in the game. Like the behaviours of the characters, the music too is never exactly the same twice.
For a satisfying experience, it takes about 6 hours to complete the game.

PC System Requirements

    • Operating System: Microsoft® Windows® XP/Vista
    • Processor: 2 Ghz
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Hard Disk Space: 500 MB
    • Video Card: Recent Geforce® or Radeon® x6xxx 256 MB (no integrated graphics)
    • Sound Card: Any Sound Card
    • DirectX® Version: DirectX® 9.0c

Mac System Requirements

    • Operating System: Mac OS X 10.8
    • Processor: 2 Ghz
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Hard Disk Space: 500 MB
    • Video Card: Recent Geforce® or Radeon® x6xxx 256 MB (no integrated graphics)
    • Sound Card: Any Sound Card
Helpful customer reviews
47 of 57 people (82%) found this review helpful
624 products in account
56 reviews
5.8 hrs on record
The Path is the only game from developer, Tale of Tales, that I thoroughly enjoy. If I had to narrow it down as to why that is, it would be due to the extremely mature themes and musical dissonance, combined with the exploration of the forest. Each item you find is unique to the character you play and, upon discovery, your character will interact with the object and an image will be superimposed over the screen, as if it were a memory.

There are six characters in all, each with their own unique locations and encounters with the wolf. Once your encounter with the wolf has been made you are left on the path, in the pouring rain, heading for your grandmother's house one last time. Upon arrival your character experiences their final nightmare and you are returned to the home screen to choose the next playable character.

The music and sound design is what becomes most dissonant in The Path. The off-tune choir of girls singing, mixed with an assortment of synths playing to heavy chains clanking in the background. It's all very unsettling.

The Path focuses on very serious themes without directly implying what has happened. If you find the topics of ♥♥♥♥ and child abuse horrifying then I advise you not to play this game. Nothing explicit is shown, it is merely suggested. It is up to you to put the pieces together.
Posted: November 25th, 2013
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29 of 36 people (81%) found this review helpful
449 products in account
16 reviews
3.4 hrs on record
I have to say first that this game is not likely to appeal to those who have a strong affection for games like Amnesia or Outlast, it's simply not that type of horror game. There is a total lack of jump scares which typifies the genre of horror game that people play per their normal routine. Most people expect within any game lumped into the horror genre for there to be a survival element.

This is not the case with "The Path" and the creators took it in an interesting and under-appreciated direction. Though the game is simple, and at times can seem clunky which is generally considered a drawback, I believe that these elements actually lend well to the type of aesthetic that they were hoping to achieve. There is no survival, there is fail or success, and you have to put in time to achieve either.

Dark and brooding, if you enjoy the sort of existential horror that only a few writers can touch, this game has hit the nail on the head. I enjoy minimalism; in music, in game play, in almost all aspects of life, so I do have a somewhat biased opinion toward my outlook of this game, in particular. It has very quickly become one of my favorites.

I think that calling it a twist on the classic Red Riding Hood story is a bit misleading. Other than the fact that the nightmares are referred to as wolves and you're essentially on a trip to your grandmother's house, there's not a whole lot of similarities. yes, these are the main tenants of the plot line of "Little Red Riding Hood", but that's not my point, here.

The point here is that each character has their own downfall, their own nightmare, and the endings are all due to self imposition. This game explores the concept that the worst things we experience in life, we bring on to ourselves - and it takes this view through the eyes of the various characters of the game. Rather than becoming a character or playing as a certain character, you are living vicariously through the character and witnessing their worst fear and what leads them to their own ultimate failure. I don't feel that any of the information here is a spoiler, because it's very unique in its approach.

I will admit that I watched some videos on YouTube of the game some time ago, and wasn't very interested in picking it up. When it was put up at a sale price, I picked it up. If I had known what I know now, I would have gladly paid the full price for the game.

I did not even mention the soundtrack beyond saying that I enjoy minimalist music - the more dissonant and noisy it is, the more I'm going to like it. Of course, the soundtrack to this game goes more in the dissonant and far-off category of reverb and chorus-soaked synthesizers and slightly off-key choirs. In the same way that David Lynch explores this type of sound in Eraserhead with the "In Heaven" scene, the score to this game explores the unsettling weird-stuff-falling-from-the-ceiling aesthetic.

In short, if you're at all interested in existential horror, and you're the type of person that enjoys seeing a slice of life of those who have experienced unfortunate circumstances that have ultimately led them to make poor decisions leading to their own personal nightmare, you will love this game. Be prepared to invest time and really focus on it to get the most out of it.
Posted: December 6th, 2013
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14 of 22 people (64%) found this review helpful
2,533 products in account
23 reviews
21.2 hrs on record
The Path is an interactive experience that strides the line between a game and an artistic exposition. The setting is a journey to your grandmother's house by 6 young girls who are told to "follow the path" while the endless forest on the sides taunts you in. Each female protagonist, at different stages of puberty, get to explore and find specific objects and areas that trigger memories and thoughts while collecting 144 flowers.

The entire exploration experience is a premise to encounter a unique metaphoric wolf or demon, that transforms the girls and throws them at gates of the fabled grandma's house, where a nightmarish sequence seals each chapter. From a narrative perspective, the experience builds upon your personal interpretation of each encounter and memory, and it is deciphered in your own mind rather than being explicit and direct. The atmosphere is tense but lacks the immediate feel of dread, while using music and sound effects to control the experience. If you run for too long, the gathering flowers disappear and the music becomes intense and foreboding, and if you arrive at set piece your are forced to walk, and so forth.

The graphics are serviceable, with unique character designs and attention to minor details; a good example is the receding city scape in the opening, or how the the path disappears once you delve deeper into the forest. Each character gets its own set of animation for all movements and interactions, and the music albeit repetitive, does contribute to the atmosphere giving hints to special encounters and sets.

The Path does require a personal emotional investment, something that many will forfeit. If you are willing to go through it, do not expect a satisfying resolution or an ending, as the journey is the game, there are no achievements or victories once the girls' paths are explored. 3/5
Posted: November 3rd, 2013
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
60 products in account
5 reviews
12.6 hrs on record
I'd like to start by saying that I did like this game. It's easy to get lost at the start when you don't know how the game functions yet and it's hard to get all the items without a bit too much aimless wandering. But it has a reasonably well thought out story and great atmosphere. Some of the girls have more engaging and well written stories than others though which is especially noticeable in the ending sequences. This leads to some of the endings feeling significantly more fulfilling than others. At first I thought it was going to be more grim than it turned out to be due to the girl I started with and if you don't collect enough of the items the ending sequences make less and less sense.

If you enjoy games that are very relaxed and mostly involve exploration you'll like this one. If you don't then you'll likely find it boring. Especially since running in the game makes it so that the environment phases out which makes it almost impossible to search for anything unless you're walking. This is a plus point for it due to the pacing of the game but it's bad if you're impatient or have really bad spacial awareness.
Posted: December 28th, 2013
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
81 products in account
1 review
7.6 hrs on record
This is a beautiful game. It is purposefully abstract and I am excited about the potential for this style of storytelling in video games in the future.

This is from the Tale of Tales creator Michael, as a response to a player's question - "in the midst of all of the individual interpretations, what was the story the creator's had in mind?":

"This ambiguity and lack of resolution is exactly why we love the interactive medium so much. And why we think it is the medium of the new generation, the new century. It offers a way of trying to come to terms with the fact that truth does not exist anymore, that reality itself has been obscured by all the images we make of it, etc. Personally I follow the guidance of 19th century writer Alfred Jarry in this context. He invented 'Pataphysics, the science that "transcends metaphysics as metaphysics transcends physics". In short, it is a view of reality that simply accepts that everything that can be imagined is true. And more importantly, perhaps, that it is true simultaneously. So, something can be both black and white at the same time. I think interactive media offer us a way of creating artworks that embrace this ambiguity.

So, even more important than the fact that every person's interpretation of The Path is perfectly valid, is the fact that this interpretation can be different every time you play, or even change after you stop playing. For me, it's more about the potential of meaning, than about a single conclusion. I think this comes from my dissatisfaction with language as a tool to describe reality. A painting or a piece of music have always felt more "true" to me than a page from the encyclopedia, or even a philosopher's theory."
Posted: February 23rd, 2014
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