There’s a new game mode in Disco Elysium, and it’s available to play right now. Collage mode – free for anyone who owns the base game – is a creative endeavor from developers ZA/UM that gives you access to nearly every asset in the game, and allows you to create scenes, and even dialogue for characters.
This isn’t the first time that Disco Elysium has received an update seemingly out of nowhere; the Final Cut version of Disco made small tweaks to the already stellar story and added voice acting to nearly every line in the game. It was a surprise, to say the least, but a welcome one.
ZA/UM are again dropping a free update, but this one puts creativity in your hands. Collage mode is perhaps the last thing I expected to come out of Martinaise, a blank canvas from one of the most detail-rich games I’ve ever played. It does give us something we didn’t know we needed, though – the ability to let a giant Kim Kitsuragi kick Harry in the ass.
Collage mode is accessible through the main menu, and once you begin you’re presented with Harry, all on his lonesome in a blank space. There is a staggering amount of assets and options for you to tweak on your journey to disco perfection – you can choose any scene from the game, from the Whirling-in-Rags bar to the Pawn Shop, and include any character model in any pose you like. These models can be moved, rotated, and scaled up and down to create the Disco Elysium-themed diorama of your dreams.
Building on the scene and character placement, there is also the ability to change the weather, time of day, and add various filters. If you’ve ever wanted to create a ‘Greetings from Martinaise’ postcard, now’s your chance. The various elements you place into one of these scenes fit with ease, and once you’re done, can look indistinguishable from the actual game.
Once the characters have been placed and posed, the scene set, the weather altered, and a retina-burning filter added, there’s the simple matter of creating drama. Collage mode has a ton of tools at your disposal to create a story, with every object in Disco Elysium being available to slap down in sticker form, and a surprisingly robust dialogue creator.
Harry argues with himself a lot, sometimes he gets the better of his base urges, and sometimes they make him do things that just aren’t disco. Using the game’s FELD dialogue reel, you’re able to create your own conversations, complete with character portraits, and even add ability rolls to things like endurance, or if you’re getting weird with it, conceptualization.
All of these elements come together beautifully in Collage mode, and while it isn’t something I knew that I needed in my life, I’m definitely glad it’s here. Collage mode is easy to get to grips with, and I’m sure there will be people infinitely more talented than I who will be able to create some beautifully cursed scenes.
Sadly, there isn’t a built-in community function right now, so there isn’t any way of discovering other people’s creations other than on the various socials. Feel free to send us anything Disco Elysium-themed – extra points if your creation includes karaoke, and Garte finally loosening up.