Here’s an interesting one: judging by their VK page (think “Russian Facebook”), Ice Pick Lodge might be looking to resurrect Pathologic via Kickstarter.
Pathologic, for those not in the know, was the first game the company developed. It was hugely ambitious and had you explore a large town in the throes of an epidemic that was killing more and more people each day; as one of three characters, each with their own goals, skills, and plot (which intertwined with the plots of the others) you had to try to find a way to cure it while attempting to survive. This was far harder than it sounds, not least because the game had very little mercy, and resources were rather scarce in a place like that. It was genuinely stressful, tense, and unpleasant. Not the sort of thing you play for “fun”, but a hell of an experience.
It won all sorts of awards in Russia, but – while the English version became a bit of a cult hit – its janky nature and atrocious translation didn’t really help it catch on. How atrocious is the translation? Well, one of the three characters is pretty much entirely unplayable, and even the other two have a fair few issues.
A proper remake with a bit more care and attention paid to both the engine and the translation would be a marvellous thing, and… it sort of looks like that might be happening. Here’s one of the recent posts from Ice Pick Lodge’s VK page, as run through Google Translate.
Friends. We initiate resuscitation Mora. Make this game will be very difficult. Magnitude of the task to which we swung far exceed our resources. Therefore, we will refer to your help whenever possible.
The first task that faces us – Kick training.
We will need to shoot a few commercials for – page application.
(Mora is how Google Translate deals with “Мора”; as the Russian name for Pathologic is Мор. Утопия, I suspect that this is what’s being discussed.)
Attempting to put that into legible English, it sounds like they’re trying to recreate “Mora”, but doing so will take more money than they have. As such, they’re planning on setting up a Kickstarter (“Kick training”?) but need to make some live-action videos for the page. The rest of that particular post details the requirements for the video, with a later post discussing the specific requirements and filming date for the first video – with the title “Мор (утопия).” Which, you may recall, is the Russian name for Pathologic.
The company have previously stated that they’d be interested in “a technologically modern remake of Pathologic“, which lends some weight to this possibility. Either way, I’ve reached out to Ice Pick Lodge for comment and clarification, and I’ll let you know if I hear anything back.
Thanks to Sarah for the heads-up. If any of you can translate Russian adequately and can let us know whether we’ve got this right, please do.