From Surreal to Real, Hands on with One Dreamer

Dreams take on all sorts of forms depending on how the dreamer was feeling and what they were thinking when they fell asleep. It could be anything from a mundane forgetful dream or a surreal experience or even a nightmare from the deepest fears of our psyche. In One Dreamer Frank, our protagonist, has to deal with his own nighttime excursions all the while working on his own crowdfunding campaign in the waking world. Consider this a bit of Wonderland meets real world sim. Or something.

One Dreamer

While the Kickstarter is running, you can sample what One Dreamer has to offer potential backers. I took the time out to play the relatively short demo and here are my thoughts. First off, if you’re not a fan of old school pixelated games then this one probably isn’t for you. The graphics harken back to the good old days when we had a limited color palette and restrictive processing power. You won’t find any photorealistic imagery here. With that said, if I didn’t scare you off yet then continue reading.

One Dreamer

One Dreamer does look like an interesting cross section of platformer and adventure. In the dreamscapes you move around using the arrow keys, the “Z” button to interact, and the spacebar to jump. Pretty simple mechanics, really. Actually, these are the controls both in the sleeping and waking worlds. No need to switch gears, so to speak. When you have an object to interact with a screen prompt will show up letting you know you can manipulate the environment. Such as picking up a hammer to break a board to get to the next dream sequence.

One Dreamer

The demo for One Dreamer starts out with Frank, appropriately enough, dreaming. Unfortunately he’s wounded. How the hell that happened is as much a mystery to him as it is to the player. Because of his injury he can barely limp through the dreamland, but as he falls he moves from a grassy landscape with bushes and trees to an underground cave system. And he continues to jump from one dreamscape to another, meeting strange creatures and someone that he calls “Alice”. Who she is is anyone’s guess, but she is a real person as we find out later in the demo. Just what she is to Frank is unknown and we’d have to play the final game to find out, I guess.

One Dreamer

Anyway, Frank eventually wakes up in a cold sweat and goes about his day. Your first task at hand is to check your computer. You can pull up an e-mail from the real world Alice and respond to her in kind. With a few prompts that you can choose from. You can also call up social media sites and Frank’s “Crowdfunder” campaign page. That’s right, there’s a crowdfunding campaign inside of a crowdfunding campaign. GAMECEPTION!

One Dreamer

That’s pretty much it. One Dreamer’s demo is rather short but it should give you an idea of how the full game is going to play out even if it’s light on the story. So, if you’re still interested give it a spin and if you like what you see consider pledging to the campaign.

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Serena Nelson
Serena has been a gamer since an early age and was brought up with the classic adventure games by Sierra On-Line, LucasArts, and Infocom. She's been an active member on Kickstarter since early 2012 and has backed a large number of crowdfunded games, mostly adventures. You can also find her writing for Kickstart Ventures and evn.moe.
Serena Nelson

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Serena Nelson
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