Fans Argue That Introduction Of So-called 'Meme Mode' To 'Disco Elysium' Shows ZAUM Doesn't Understand The Game

March 17th, 2023 - 1:57 PM EDT by Adam Downer

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It's been three and a half years since Disco Elysium released, providing one of the headiest gaming experiences available with long, deeply philosophical diatribes on the natures of capitalism, communism and life itself. Since its release, its studio, ZAUM, has seemed intent on ignoring all of that and milking the IP for all it's worth — at least that's how many of its fans feel.

After the company inspired trepidation in fans by supposedly selling a TV version of the game to Amazon, the team that created Disco Elysium was pushed out under mysterious circumstances, with one team member stating, "ZAUM no longer represents the ethos it was founded on."

In that spirit, ZAUM has now introduced a so-called "collage mode" to the game, which will allow players to pose characters in goofy ways so they can share humorous screenshots on social media. Many fans have taken to calling this a "meme mode."

The mode gives players the ability to make shipping collages for amnesiac alcoholic detective Harry and his partner Kim Katsuragi.

In fact, ZAUM is encouraging that specific use of its collage mode — on its website, the company advertises that fans can "Fabricate completely new dramas from unforgivable punch-ups to fruity yet forbidden kisses." The trailer also shows a collage in which characters dance around Harry hanging from a tree in Revachol.

Many voiced how the mode was contradictory to the spirit of the game. Disco Elysium is certainly flush with comedic moments, but the game on the whole is moody and at times heartbreaking. Fans felt the so-called "meme mode" was the equivalent of Mr. Krabs defiling a grave for money, though they tended to put their disappointment in more colorful terms.

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In response to the announcement, some online are advocating for pirating the original version of the game, while others have suggested finding a way to play the game without paying for it and supporting ZAUM.

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