Despite lawsuits and other messy goings-on at Disco Elysium studio ZA/UM recently, things are starting to look a little sunnier for this troubled RPG maker. Three of its lawsuits with former employees have been resolved this week, and today marks the arrival of a new mode in the game called Collage Mode, a daft and very entertaining screenshotting and diorama tool that lets you arrange Revachol’s many, many inhabitants in all sorts of weird scenes, poses and sizes. And yes, that is a giant Kim and Kuno up top there tormenting your tiny detective protagonist. What of it?
Collage Mode arrives today as a free update to Disco Elysium, and will be available straight from the main menu screen. It’s a dedicated tool, so you won’t be able to access it or fiddle about with scenes in-game unfortunately, but you will be able to create your own dioramas from scratch using a variety of backgrounds, characters, poses, border frames and fan-created stickers. You can even write your own dialogue for the scene by entering custom text in its dialogue reel for that extra touch of surreal authenticity.
In addition to putting characters in silly poses, you’ll also be able to place dozens of in-game items into a scene, and add emoji-style stickers to them. There are also a bunch of filters and weather effects to experiment with, and you can change the time of day for that little bit of extra mood lighting. The scene reacts dynamically to whatever settings you have in place, too, so shadows will accurately move around the scene as you place, rotate and scale your characters if you choose to set your scene at dusk, for example, and the lighting will grow moodier if you choose to enable rain or snow.
If you haven’t finished Disco Elysium, though, beware, as it contains every single character and map environment from the game as standard, so there will definitely be a few spoilers present if you’re still midway through the game. And when I say every character, I really do mean every character, right down to the NPCs who don’t have any dialogue. ZA/UM have gone as far as creating brand new character portraits for these particular NPCs who didn’t have them previously in the main game, but those aren’t the only new additions you’ll be able to see. In a press presentation about Collage Mode earlier this week, the devs said there are also plenty of secret easter eggs to find as well, so it’s probably just worth having a root around anyway, even if you’re not that into screenshots.
I’ve been playing around with an early version of it this week, and I can confirm it’s good, daft fun. The maps are enormous, providing plenty of different little nooks and crannies to base your scene, and the character poses available are bound to produce some truly bonkers scenarios once it’s out in the wild – and we all know how much I like good photo mode poses.
If you already own Disco Elysium, you can try Collage Mode yourself for free right now, and if you don’t own Disco Elysium but would like to, you can grab its enhanced Final Cut edition on Steam and GOG for £35/€40/$40, or the Epic Games Store where it’s currently on sale for a mere £8 until 4pm GMT today.