Perception is a horror game developed by veterans of the industry who worked on games like Bioshock Infinite. It has an interesting twist: the main character is blind.
In Perception you play as Cassie, a young, blind woman who travels to an abandoned mansion which is the source of her nightmares. When Cassie arrives there she finds herself trying to solve the mansion’s mysteries and avoid the ghastly threat called The Presence.
Perception is rather weak in the story department. Each chapter follows a different mystery and it all feels kind of clunky. When you explore the mansion, you relive the memories of its past inhabitants. This is how you learn the lore of the mansion, but most of the time you will feel lost. The memories tell a really vague story and to truly understand what’s going on, you need to look for notes. However, with the dangers of the enemies and your disability, it becomes more of a chore than a fun thing to do. I would like to go more in depth, but that would be spoiler territory which I’m going to avoid.
Since you play as a blind woman, the entire game is spent in the dark. However, Cassie has razor-sharp senses and with her cane she can tap the ground which illuminates your surroundings. Most of the environments look cool and with each chapter the layout of the house changes adding new stuff to see. Still, due to the fact that there are enemies lurking around, you will spend most of your time in the dark, so it will be hard to enjoy your environments.
Perception has great audio design. I was playing the game in the dark with my headphones on max volume and it resulted in a great experience which shook me to my core. Footstep creeks and sounds around the mansion all help build amazing atmosphere which doesn’t let up until the game is over.
The voice acting, however, was disappointing. Most of it is alright, but some characters like Cassie have some truly cheesy line delivery, which sort of ruins the serious tone of the entire game.
Perception is played like most stealth horror games. You explore the mansion using your echolocation ability and hide from enemies when they appear. It’s all really basic stuff and gets boring really quickly. There are next to no puzzles, but when they do show up they are really well done. One of my favorite parts in the game is a puzzle where you use your phone to help find a passcode for a locked door. I wish there were more segments like this in the game, but sadly there’s not.
The rate of enemy encounters is low. You probably will run into The Presence once in a chapter, and it’s so easy to avoid him it’s laughable. When the only threatening thing in the game doesn’t threaten you, then you know you did something wrong. All you have to do is to wait until The Presence disappears and you won’t have to worry about anything else.
Perception is not a bad game in any way, but due to its issues and the incredibly short length (under three hours), I can’t recommend this game at full price. However, once the game is on a discount, I highly suggest checking it out.
This game was reviewed using a code provided by a publisher/developer.