Enigmarium – Sensperience [Hivemind Review]

Sensperience is an audio game created by Enigmarium in Slovenia.

In-game: A completely black image with nothing visible.
First person view

Format

Style of Play:

  • Adaptation of an in-person game (can be played IRL)
  • Audio game

Required Equipment: computer with internet connection, blindfold or sleep mask, headphones

Recommended Team Size: 3-5

Play Time: 90 minutes

Price: €90 per team

Booking: book online for a specific time slot

Description

Sensperience was an audio-only experience akin to tabletop roleplaying. Our host told us about our environment, we spoke our actions into existence, and the host explained what happened as a result. Accompanying voice performance and audio effects added to the immersion.

In this experience we were each playing as ourselves, and the host referred to each of us by name.

The recommended blindfold and headphones significantly added to the immersion and overall experience.

Hivemind Review Scale

REA's hivemind review scale - 3 is recommended anytime, 2 recommended in quarantine, 1 is not recommended.

Read more about our Hivemind Review format.

Cindi S’ Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

After reading the description for Sensperience, I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect. I’d never played an audio game, let alone one that required you to be blindfolded the whole time! After putting on a sleep mask and headphones, I quickly became immersed in the narrative. Detailed descriptions of the surroundings, along with sound effects and my imagination, combined to create a very realistic environment. As the game progressed, we influenced the storyline through choices we made, both individually and as a team, similar to the old Choose Your Own Adventure books. When our team made ridiculous decisions, the game host responded ridiculously, leading to very funny moments and an oddly fluid story. I was also surprised by how personalities emerged when most senses were taken away, and the result was a genuine team experience.

Andrew Reynolds’ Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.

Video meetings, by their very nature, are a highly visual medium. The Hippocratic Oath said “Nevermind!” to all that and had us put on blindfolds for the full 90 minutes. This was an interesting change of pace and it was integral to the game’s overall experience. Why?

This game is not an escape room; it is audio theater. Really, it’s a role-playing experience – think Dungeons & Dragons without the character sheets and dice rolling. The blindfold kept us concentrating only on the game. Because there were no puzzles as we traditionally understand them in the escape room world, there was no need to keep notes. Any inventory management was handled by our memories and our dungeon – sorry – game master. She was especially good at allowing our table talk while nudging us towards completion by reminding us of the ticking clock.

All in all, the story was engaging and the experience was very fun. It gets full marks from me not because I think it can stand up to some of the exemplars of traditional virtual games, but because of the excellent form factor and implementation of such a nontraditional game.

Brett Kuehner’s Reaction

Rating: 3 out of 3.
  • ? No real puzzles, basically pure audio roleplaying. I enjoyed it a lot, but someone looking for a puzzle game might want to try something else.
  • + Excellent performances from the host and the non-player characters in the game
  • + The setting and story setup were intriguing and drove a satisfying arc from start to finish
  • + The “timer” mechanism was very well integrated into the game in a way that made narrative sense
  • + The host was willing to go along with the way we wanted to play, and incorporated feedback that organically affirmed our choices
  • – Making sure that everyone got a chance to contribute meant the game could feel a bit slow at times
  • + The suggestion of being blindfolded or eyes closed worked quite well in conjunction with the detailed descriptions of the world. I could visualize the environment clearly.
  • + “Roleplaying” as myself in the game world was fun, and simpler than playing a more typical RPG character

David Spira’s Reaction

Rating: 2 out of 3.

Sensperience was an entirely verbal approach to online escape game play. Tabletop roleplayers would feel right at home playing this game. As with all games in this style, your teammates and their willingness to play will make or break your experience.

As the game began, Enigmarium encouraged us to blindfold ourselves to increase immersion, and while I was a bit skeptical at first, I found this distraction-free approach to play honestly relaxing and immersive.

The hosting was well done and constantly adjusting to the tone and pacing of our team. The use of sound effects and the presence of an additional voice performer added dynamics and depth to the experience.

My only disappointment was really with the game’s subject matter: outbreak-induced post-apocalypse survival scenario. And I’ll be honest, this really is a personal preference, Enigmarium did a good job with the story, it’s just that after the past year, my desire to explore immersive experiences in this realm has waned.

So, if you haven’t become fatigued of post-apocalyptic stories, this honestly is a quality, lovingly crafted experience. I truly did have fun with it in spite of the fact that I would have eagerly experienced just about any other narrative in this format. I hope that Enigmarium launches a second game in this format at some point.

Disclosure: Enigmarium provided the Hivemind reviewers with a discounted play.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.