Pathologic is one of my favourite games ever, and one of the reasons why is the way it structures its narrative: basically, you choose to play as one of the three main characters, all different types of healers (nicknamed Bachelor, Haruspex and Changeling), in a backwards, vaguely Russian town ravaged by a strange plague. Each one of them has different motivations, methods and backgrounds, and the ones you didn’t pick still exist in the world, working parallel to you to find the source of the disease and the cure, but most often doing so in ways that are counter-intuitive to the agenda of the character you’re playing as. They each have their own narrative and come up with a different solution at the end of the story, so the only way to have a complete understanding of the game is to finish it three times, with all three characters.
I think this structure works well because Pathologic has a dense story, with tons of characters, factions (even the local children have their own gangs and political strifes), twists and turns, so it’s a way to ease the player into its universe without overwhelming them too much. Also, for the most part, each thread feels really specific and informs a lot about the characters, the world and the plot, revealing different sides to everything, and each storyline is really just fragmented and biased pieces of information you collected, filtered through your character. Some examples are: the Bachelor is a famous academic from the Capital so he’s well-received by the local elite, and his dialogue options often reflect his privilege and prejudices, while the Haruspex starts off being hunted for a crime he didn’t commit and has to regain his reputation back throughout the game, staying in contact mainly with the local children who take his side; something may happen to you as the Haruspex, but you’ll only fully understand why when you play as someone else who had a direct hand at the event; other characters who oppose/dislike you can actually lie to your face and jerk you around if they don’t trust you (and you’ll only realise it way later), while being friendly, helpful and cooperative with someone else; you may like a character while playing as the Bachelor, but get a totally different view on them with the Changeling; and so on and so forth.
But the thing is, Pathologic is kiiinda like a mix of a walking sim and visual novel with survival horror, and while the latter mechanics are crucial to the experience, they are brutal, and you can totally get into an unrecoverable situation midway through the game. I managed to play through all three storylines but it can get hard enough to see one story to the end, let alone subject yourself to all three of them, which is a real shame because the narrative and the way it is presented is really, really cool.