Dystopian Text-Based Puzzler 'Blackbar' Arrives in App Store

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Developer Neven Mrgn, one half of The Incident developer Big Bucket Games, has released his new text-based dystopian sci-fi game, Blackbar.

The game, which was co-developed by James Moore of Panic, has similar traits to old text-based adventure games and interactive fiction. Players will become Vi, deciphering a series of letters from Kenty, an employee of the fictional Department of Communication. Letters are filled with blacked out words that must be filled in to progress through the game, eventually leading to a larger conspiracy.

Blackbar is a text game: a sci-fi story of a dystopian future told through the medium of word puzzles. Reminiscent of text adventures and interactive fiction, it has a unique mechanic centered around the concept of censorship. Censorship is frustrating, but the human spirit can beat that frustration by turning it into a game.

You'll pick up and understand Blackbar instantly; however, its challenges will keep you searching, thinking, and trying for days.

blackbar
Our sister site TouchArcade played Blackbar and thought it was a fun and "incredibly interesting" game:

I'm expecting many more twists and turns throughout the story, all based around deciphering the censorship you're being subjected to. It's incredibly interesting so far. As strange as it sounds, just trying to discover what the censored words are is actually really fun too.

Blackbar is available for $2.99 for the iPhone and iPad. [Direct Link]

Top Rated Comments

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93 months ago
Vi? Rather play as Emacs.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
93 months ago

I thought this game looked fun. I downloaded it and seem to have come to the end within only a couple hours of noncontinuous play...a bit spendy at $2.99 if that's really the end. :confused:


A latte at my local coffee shop costs $3.85. That drink entertains me minimally for about 45 minutes.

This game which 2 people put months of work into costs $2.99 and is playable for a couple hours and really tickles your brainparts.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
93 months ago

I was comparing to other iOS games, not other forms of entertainment. I can count on one hand the number of games I've paid more than $1.99 for on iOS. The other games in this category for me were much more involved graphically and took far longer to play through, and thus would have required far greater resources on the creation side than this game.

That said, I did enjoy the game, but I was simply surprised at the short amount of time it took to reach the end. Based on the description saying "its challenges will keep you searching, thinking, and trying for days," I was hoping for something that I could pick up and play for a while over a longer period of time, and this game did not deliver that.


Here's what i put on reddit about it:

If I put my hours into a piece of work, I charge for it.
the only way to change the 99c glut in the app store is to change it. I charge what I do for my work mostly because that's what it's worth and partly to keep away anyone who would pay less.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
93 months ago
Ending

I got to the screen where I had to enter the character's first name to comply and did so. I thought the ending was pretty weak.

But then I went back and instead of putting in Vi, I put in "NO".

Try it.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
93 months ago

I've gotten stuck on the one with two three letter words censored and a picture of two women in swimsuits.


you probably won't find anyone who will help you with this one it's close to The End.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
93 months ago

Thank you both! :D

----------



When you go on vacation you "xxxx xxxx xxxx xxx" from work. Does that help? ;)


Thanks, that did it!

Just a general observation -- some blanks can be filled in with different words. I quit the program and restarted and some blanks had different words than I used. So there is some flexibility.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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