menu

Mobile Game Encourages Players To Hold Eye Contact With Strangers

Mobile Game Encourages Players To Hold Eye Contact With Strangers
technology

Soulfill double dares you to engage with your environment.

Rachel Pincus
  • 29 may 2014

Ever feel that those stares you see on the subway are a bit…soulless? Now you can fill them with the products of your consideration and imagination with Soulfill, an iOS app that encourages you to look up at others instead of using your phone to hide your gaze like everyone else. The game’s developer, Jason Marziani of app company Little Wins, hails from South Philadelphia, and he specifically set out to produce a game that encouraged contact with strangers. Created for the 48-hour Global Game Jam this year, the game takes this idea into consideration in every possible way, even using a voiceover interface with simple touch gestures so that you can focus your energy on your heroic, if not socially awkward, mission.

img_1338.jpg

The game barely has any visuals and weighs in at less than a megabyte, and the result of this commitment to minimalism is a bit creepy in its sparsity. The narrator of the game is a Siri-like computer voice that lays out the situation for you. You’re on a mission to record ‘Encounters’ – the eye contact that the game prizes – before a mysterious, and dangerous, enemy appears. A bit alarmingly (or perhaps satirically, depending on your point of view), you’re described as being of a different “kind” than your fellow passengers. “They walk with such empty souls. There is no warmth down here,” says the monotone narrator. “The night is dark and nears, and this night may be the darkest of them all.” Meanwhile, you have warmth that “brings vigor to the body, laughter to the lips, and passion to the heart.”

img_1340.jpg

To Reveal, apparently, is to look at someone who is already making eye contact with you; those who cause you to Reveal, in the logic of the game, are the enemy masquerading as the public. The narrator, in the beginning, is afraid that this has been your fate: “Come in. Are you there? We thought we lost you. We thought you Revealed,” she says. Meanwhile, if a subject avoids eye contact with you when you look away from them, the game calls it a Break. All of these interactions are logged through simple tap and swipe gestures, turning this immersive fantasy into an addictive one.

The question is: how long can you keep up this fantasy? What would you say to your fellow passengers should your eye contact lead to a conversation? It’s like playing some kind of double-dare game with a friend, except the friend isn’t present. Above all, where is this sci-fi storyline going? You’ll have to play to find out.

Soulfill

[h/t] technical.ly, Global Game Jam blog, author’s Flickr

technology
Trending

DIY Kit Lets You Build Your Own Wooden Bike, Boat Or Caravan

Design & Architecture
Culture Today

Messaging Add-On Helps You Correct Your Friends’ Bad Grammar

An iMessage sticker pack will help you copyedit text messages

Automotive Today

Mercedes-Benz Introduces A New Electric Mobility Brand

The separate entity aims to simplify the identification of Mercedes EV products to customers

Trending

Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Mobile Today

Tinder’s New Feature Makes Swiping A Group Effort

The dating app wants to democratize its gestural interaction by buying in to the social polling trend pervasive among millennials

Related Expert

Zach Lieberman

Art, Technology, Programming

Syndicated Today

Autonomous Garbage Drone Prevents Trash From Reaching Deep Ocean

The solar-powered WasteShark collects refuse closer to the source: the harbor

Automotive Today

Aston Martin Reveals Its Own Luxury Powerboat

The sleek AM37 echoes styling elements from the British brand's sports cars

Advertising Today

An Escort Website Fights Violence Against Sex Workers

The advocacy campaign from McCann aims uncover the human toll of the exploitative industry

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry
NEW

PSFK Op-Ed Yesterday

Digital Design Expert: Mobile First Is Dead, Think Mobile Native

Brian Cooper, chief creative officer of OLIVER Group UK, explains how some brands are still playing catch-up to new technology

PSFK Labs Yesterday

The 10 Steps To Discover, Hire, Develop Your Next Leader

PSFK's Future of Work report outlines key steps in the employee development path to empower next-gen leaders

Culture Today

LIFE Magazine Relaunches In Pure VR

The general interest periodical, which ceased publication in 2000, has turned into a portal for virtual reality content

Mobile Today

Reorder This Detox Drink With A Simple Text Message

Dirty Lemon is streamlining its communication by letting customers place orders, ask product questions and request help exclusively through chat

Op-Ed Today

The Future Of The American Workforce Requires Unbundling College Education

President of JetBlue Technology Ventures: developing corporate education programs for non-traditional students

Retail Today

Gilt’s Pop-Up House Is The Kind Of Store You’ll Want To Live In

The New York City townhouse plays host to the latest in retail inspiration, curation, and lifestyle activation (and some libations, too)

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders
NEW

Mobile Today

Registering To Vote Is Now Just A Text Away

A new bot aims to mobilize underrepresented groups this election season through SMS and Facebook Messenger

Africa Today

Virtual Reality Game Gives Lessons About Emergency Birth Care

LIFE is a serious tool that takes advantage of new technology to help save lives

Luxury Today

Shoe Repair Has Moved Onto Your Phone

Cobbler Concierge is an on-demand service to get your footwear fixed online

No search results found.