From the developers of Bioshock, Bioshock Infinite, and Dead Space comes The Deep End Games, an indie games company with its first title, Perception already sweeping in the funds as a Kickstarter project. In the past 12 hours alone, the game has jumped $12,000, climbing from $30,000 of the pledged goal to $42,000. It was only launched on May 26.
As with any Kickstarter, this game will only be funded if at least $150,000 is pledged toward it by Thursday, June 25, 2015, at 8:01 AM CDT. With hundreds of eager backers clamoring after the various prize-for-cash rewards, it seems this game already has an avid audience and a high chance of success. And if Mac and Linux users want to play the game, an additional goal of $175,000 exists for that cause as well.
The spooky, witty, and sleek trailer shows how a blind woman can in fact be a playable character in a video game—a surprise because of course games are largely dependent on visuals. With bat-like echolocation, though, players, as Cassie, will make their way through the aptly-named Estate at Echo Bluff, searching for answers and rooting out personal demons. Made all the more frightening for its special connotations for a blind individual, The Presence is the most formidable enemy players will face, but it is just one of many. In fact, as the game goes on, developers promise that not only will the house physically evolve, screwing with your already challenging orientation, but so will the way players interact with it. Because as Cassie dives deeper into the estate’s mystery, the house will fight back, and the type of enemy she faces correspondingly evolves as well.
The Kickstarter promises an intriguing, ever-shifting world painted in a knows-who-it-is, ghostly style. In this unseen house of blues and blacks, unarmed Cassie will have to exploit the spaces around her to run, hide, distract enemies, and hope she can defeat them before they destroy her.
What’s particularly curious about this project is its approach to the horror genre. With virtual reality technology suggesting that the next step forward in horror gaming is in deep, sensory immersion, this game boldly takes multiple steps in the opposite direction by threatening to take away our key sense of vision. Yet perhaps virtual reality technology is not the only path to deeper immersion. If this game is funded and made, it seems a safe bet that being blind can in fact achieve the same immersive heights.
T. Cooley is a scriptwriting/ production student at university. If there’s a story, visual or textual, you can bet she’ll want to talk about it. So pull up a chair, and let’s dig into those stories we love!