Imagine this: your eyes have been burned out by a brutal authoritarian state for owning forbidden art and you have to make an escape.
The challenge might seem impossible to those of us with sight, but in Blindscape, that is your new reality. Blindscape is a mobile adventure game without any visual cues. The entire game takes place in pitch darkness, showing just a black smartphone screen.
Replacing the graphics is a rich audio soundscape. Blindscape begins with a quote from Plato about art, then an audio memory: “The punishment fits the crime,” followed by anguished cries.
After the cries die out, we fade into the noise of a ticking clock and a rattling radiator, followed by the narrator’s voice. Almost immediately, the audio begins to paint a picture in your mind. You can see the grim, drab room around you, being built both by the soundscape and the narrator’s description.
Then there’s the matter of leaving, which requires you to begin exploring your screen. You have to feel around for doorknobs, walk towards sounds and push and pull things without any clue of what might come next.
The only downside to Blindscape is that it’s short and not overly difficult. I’d love to see a longer sequel with more suspense and danger, but regardless, Blindscape is a fascinating and unique experience that tests one of the most under-used senses in games.
Blindscape is free and can be found on both the Google Play Store and App Store.