[dropcap size=big]I[/dropcap]f Neverending Nightmares taught me one thing it’s to wear a clean pair of underwear while playing. And Devastated Dreams looks to up the ante with an even more nightmarish landscape where the monsters are lurking in the darkness ready to pounce. I decided, rather foolishly, to dive headfirst into the demo and what I found is most certainly not for someone with a weak constitution. Or bladder.
As mentioned previously, you play as a young pregnant woman named Angel living in the Philippines. And the demo starts out with her waking up, presumably in her own little hut. Grabbing a flashlight (highlighted in a golden color) she unlocks the door and heads on outside into the jungle. And wanders around. Aimlessly. Seriously, why is she out in the middle of the night with nothing but her night clothes and more than just a little pregnant? If it were me I’d grab a drink and head on back to bed. But, that wouldn’t be much of a game now, would it?
Of course, as with his previous work Matt Gilgenbach is also using dreamscapes to convey the themes throughout Devastated Dreams. The main difference is that you’re outside most of the time. In complete darkness unless you turn the torch on. But, don’t keep it on all the time, or run everywhere, or you might end up grabbing the attention of the dreaded Aswang. In fact, if you’re not careful you can easily be taken down without realizing it. I very nearly soiled myself several times towards the end of the demo.
For the most part the demo has Angel running around without encountering any beast. It’s just her and the jungle. Plus, whatever she finds in the various huts lining the trail. As with the flashlight any objects that you’re able to interact with are of a golden color while blood is most assuredly red in color. Which is in stark contrast to the black-and-white colors of the game world. If you’ve played Neverending Nightmares you’ll already know how to play Devastated Dreams.
Your first encounter with the Aswang is actually pretty far into the demo. The tension heightens throughout and you’re continuously on edge wondering when something might strike from the shadows. One flies past a window as you’re checking out a bloody crib. Just what the hell happened here and why are the villagers so unnerved by what’s going on? Eventually you’ll come across a rather horrid sight in a dead end. A blue colored blanket is covered with blood and a small hand sticking out near a pacifier only makes Angel retch. I would too, to be honest.
And along with the blood she spits up a key. Which she uses to unlock a locked door that leads to a swamp area. And is promptly dragged under and wakes up, childless, in a crypt. At which point the demo ends and I have to check to make sure that my heart is finally beating again. Where Neverending Nightmares had me on edge all the time Devastated Dreams made me jump at every little sound and very nearly crapped myself every time the Aswang descended on Angel. If you’re a fan of horror that keeps your heart racing then you might find this one to your liking.