The Garden of Unearthly Delights, Kadlitpina (Rundle Park)

“Do you take responsibility for breaking the ornament?”

The accusatory question from the receptionist echoes out of the darkness. My concierge – the true perpetrator – had anxiously pinned her blunder on me. But she has been my only friend in the pitch black labyrinth, reassuringly whispering guidance in my ear through this dreamlike hotel. Do I take the blame to spare her the consequences, or tell the truth?

As a binaural audio-based experience in a darkened shipping container, Eulogy will be familiar to anyone who has experienced Darkfield‘s other works such as Flight, Seance, and Coma. But where it differs is the microphone attached to your headset, allowing for audience members to actively shape their narrative at key moments via the power of speech recognition technology.

I accepted responsibility for the broken ornament – and half an hour later that decision was thrown in my face, along with a dozen other choices.

After comparing notes with others who made different choices, it turns out these moments are more flavour than true narrative forks in the road – like most interactive fiction. But it nevertheless adds yet another layer of intimate immersion to Darkfield’s already deeply immersive formula.

An unsettling, claustrophobic experience best compared to a bad dream in a sensory deprivation tank, Eulogy won’t be for everyone, but for those seeking a visceral journey into the unknown – this is the right choice.

Max Opray

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