The Deep End Games' Perception is a unique kind of survival horror, where a blind protagonist uses sound to her advantage.
One of the biggest principles of survival horror is that sometimes what you don't see is scarier than what's in front of you. If that's the case, what would a game be like where you can't see anything all? Perception is one Kickstarter project hoping to take this concept to its logical end. Created by former Irrational Games dev Bill Gardner, Perception puts you in the shoes of a blind woman exploring an abandoned mansion - only to find that something inside tracks every sound she makes.
Perception tells the story of Cassie, who tracks down a mysterious mansion that has plagued her with visions. Despite being blind, Cassie is able to navigate her surroundings using a kind of Daredevilesque echolocation. Everything that creates sound in the mansion, from leaking pipes to wind leaking through open windows, leaves a temporary visual impression she can track to its source. Failing any audio stimulus, Cassie can simply thump her cane on the ground to briefly "see" what's around her. But there's a catch - a creature called the Presence also follows sound and can home in on Cassie's cane if it's used too often. To avoid it, Cassie must set "sound traps" that will lure the Presence away until she solves the mansion's mystery.
Perception's mechanics aren't solely limited to echolocation. Cassie still can't make out certain details of her surroundings, and will need her smartphone to translate letters to audio, or call a friend describe various objects. As the story unfolds, Cassie will eventually be able to move through time to different generations, revealing what happened to the house and its inhabitants. Gardner wants to use these elements to give Perception a unique, first-person narrative comparable to Gone Home - another indie game with Irrational connections of its own.
All told, Gardner is seeking $150,000 by June 25 to make Perception a reality, and has already reached 10 percent of the goal. It will be still be some time before the finished product is available, if at all, but if it looks as creepy and imaginative as the gameplay trailer? We may have yet another solid survival horror entry on our hands.