Feeling a little lost? Aren’t we all, friend. Aren’t we all...
Seriously, though - a year into Dreams’ release, and the Dreamiverse is filled to bursting with games, short films, music, sculptures, collections and stuff to admire. If you don’t know where to start, or why, you’re probably not alone!
So we thought we’d help you out, with a series we’re calling the Dreamview Weekly Roundup. It’ll be a weekly (we know, shocker) list of dreams that are well worth your time. Five creations, five short reviews, five chances to BLOW YOUR MIND... or at least pique your interest. Got a minute? Then let’s start right now.
The cramped, neon-lit streets of Petrolia tie themselves in beguiling knots; animal-faced citizens huddle together and murmur in the alleyways. There’s a new curiosity around every sharp corner of this alternate-universe city, and that’s even before you stumble across the false walls and secret passageways in search of an exit. One of the most creative riffs on the Ancient Times scene that we’ve ever seen, and a mesmerising experience in VR - Teebonesy’s a talented worldbuilder.
Pinball can be a bit of an acquired taste (not like that - spit it out, please!). Much of it is down to chance, and unless you’re a chaser of high scores, there’s not much to pull you onwards. Enter the recently-updated Flip Out, a compelling combination of pinball and legendary Atari title Breakout: the aim is to fire your ball forward through themed levels to destroy blocks and eventually escape. The sense of progression here is gratifying stuff, and might well convert a few reluctant ‘ballers. (Is that the casual term for pinball players? It is now.)
Sometimes, it’s the simplest things that are the most beautiful. This is absolutely the case with Happiness, an audio-visual living sculpture depicting a woman with her face turned peacefully toward the falling rain, her umbrella laying forgotten in a pool of light. An elegantly-captured ode to one of those small moments in life that might look innocuous, but are often filled with feeling.
by NauticalSquatch and JTBKnuggetsauce
Who says first-person shooters have to look grey and boring? DEADZONE is a riot of colour and a bundle of laughs, pitting you and your wise-cracking robot companion against hordes of masked Creeps and monstrous bosses to win back an overgrown, overrun world. Gunfeel may leave a little to be desired, but it’s charisma and clever directing work that carries this one - the credits read like a ‘who’s who’ of Dreams, too.
A platformer where you play as a small singing seed, one of the first things Drag Flower 2 The Exit encourages you to do is to take your time, rather than worrying about collecting every petal. It’s soon revealed to be an affecting tale about growing at your own pace, something that’s reflected in every aspect of the game: as you explore you spring up higher and higher, the wonky but charming world blossoms around you, and venwave’s wonderful score unfurls into new and fuller forms. Handmade, heartfelt and with definite ‘weird PlayStation’ vibes (think LocoRoco), prepare to leave this one with the glint of a tear in your eye.