If you aren’t familiar with Kentucky Route Zero, it is, in my estimation, one of the greatest games ever made. Your mileage may vary, depending on your feelings about dream logic, non-Euclidean architecture, and magical realist explorations of economic collapse. At least initially, it follows a graying delivery man named Conway as he attempts to deliver his final package before retirement, which requires him to traverse a secret, unmappable highway in the caves beneath Kentucky.
The surreal, episodic game has already released four of its five “acts,” with the fifth episode slated to follow shortly and hit all major consoles once complete. In between releases, publisher Cardboard Computer has intermittently released free mini-games to whet players’ appetites. With the final installment on the horizon, a new interlude has just hit the internet, this time set in a haunted public access TV station during a very strange broadcast.
Titled Un Pueblo de Nada, or “People of Nothing,” it transports players to the offices of WEVP-TV in a strange, empty town on the night of a terrible storm. Rain falls on the metal roof like the drum of anxious fingers; thunder rumbles ominously in the distance. You can spin around the room in 360 degrees to observe two men preparing a weather report filtered through oil and dye, a friendly crow manning a computer station, and a video camera ready to go live. But remember that this is a world defined by its negative spaces — the things that have been lost and the ways they have remained behind — so don’t be surprised if there are ghosts in the machines.
As in previous interludes, you may encounter phone numbers in Un Pueblo de Nada; you should call them. After you finish, you may want to check out the WEVP-TV website, and right click to turn on closed captioning. (What you find will be familiar in some ways, and strange in others.) This isn’t the first time Kentucky Route Zero has featured the peculiar public access channel, but don’t worry if you’ve never played before; it would be no less surreal even if you had. It’s worth going back to the beginning for the full narrative experience, but Kentucky Route Zero always feels like something between a dream, a river, and a choose your own adventure story. While you’re welcome to shift one way or another in its dream-like current, it’s best to let yourself get caught up in the flow and go wherever it takes you.