Apotheorasis Asks Players to Blindly Go Where No God Has Gone Before

Apotheorasis: can you play by ear?

Apotheorasis

It’s 2022, so we’ve all heard about video games. But have you heard about audio games? Might be a bit self-explanatory, but for the uninitiated, audio games are games that don’t have any visuals and instead rely on audio cues to tell the player where they are in the world, further the story, and so on. My first encounter with audio games was back in 2016 when I played A Blind Legend, which, despite some of its hiccups (I was constantly getting stuck in walls), left a lasting impression on me and a fervent hope that the genre would be better refined as time went on.

Enter Apotheorasis, an action thriller game with “3D first person” shooting elements. Currently being developed and self-published by Tall Guy Productions, Apotheorasis is available to play on Steam as an Early Access title for $5.99 USD. Touting a “short but sweet” story with “hard but forgiving” gameplay and — my personal favorite — “dream-like graphics” (i.e., your imagination), Apotheorasis intrigues, but does it deliver? Only one way to find out!

Apotheorasis

As previously mentioned, Apotheorasis is an audio game, so no matter how long you stare at the screen, you’re not going to see anything except a brownish-maroon color and a prompt to close your eyes. It’s highly recommended that you use headphones, as the aforementioned 3D aspect comes into play here since sound conveys all information — not just in terms of story, but also positions, locations, and even threats. Someone might whisper into your left ear, a bullet might whizz by your right ear, or perhaps you’re running in one direction when you should be running the opposite way towards a buzzing alarm. In short: an audio game relies solely on audio, so be sure to have some good headphones for your playthrough!

Apotheorasis’ premise is an interesting one — unfortunately, you’ve been in a horrific car accident. Although you were resuscitated, you were practically on death’s door, mangled and injured almost beyond rescue. Almost. Luckily, those who found you were not only able to save your life, but to build you into something better than you were before: a newborn god. That’s right — you’ve been Six Million Dollar Man’d into a being that can now shoot and block. And while they weren’t able to bring back your vision or recover your memories, they were able to enhance your hearing with new and improved ears that can better detect movement and locations. Perfect! Just in time to be thrown into a series of scenarios I never could have seen coming — literally.

Apotheorasis

One thing that surprised me about Apotheorasis was how immersive it genuinely felt. Normally visuals are what draw me to a game, so the lack thereof might have been an uphill climb for some developers. In Apotheorasis’ case, I was immediately drawn into the story and felt like the situations that were unfolding before my ears were actually happening to me — similarly to how I might feel playing a VR game. In the aforementioned car crash, I legitimately flinched when I first heard it, despite getting that Doppler effect to warn me about an impending collision. When the narrator described situations that were happening to me, my imagination filled in blanks that spoke to my actual fears, desires, and aesthetics. In that sense, I connected very quickly with Apotheorasis and found it easy to press forward, even if I would occasionally open my eyes to a blank screen.

Apotheorasis does a lot — and I mean a LOT — right in terms of story-telling, movement, and combat, but its one weak point is its voice acting. The voice actors speak in heavily accented (and some cases modified) English, which is not a deal-breaker under normal circumstances because I just turn on subtitles to better understand the dialogue. Unfortunately, it is somewhat hard to understand what the characters are saying, leading to a lot of sitting and waiting for instructions to repeat so I can comprehend what was just asked of me. And while there are subtitle options available for Apotheorasis, the game is intended to be played with your eyes closed, so reading a script kind of inhibits the mind’s eye. With that being said, this one issue should not prevent interested parties from checking out Apotheorasis, as it is a fine example of what audio games can offer.

Be sure to check out Apotheorasis on Steam today!

Heather Johnson Yu
Born at a very young age; self-made thousandaire. Recommended by 4 out of 5 people that recommend things. Covered in cat hair. Probably the best sleeper in the world. Still haven't completed the civil war quest in Skyrim but I'm kind of okay with that. Too rad to be sad.

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