Well, would you look at that? Weekly Roundup #113 on the 13th October... If only this was the year 13, we'd be sufficiently scared - but if it was the year 13, we suppose we wouldn't be around to write nonsense about it. But enough about us, how are you? Are you feeling spooky yet? 'Tis the season after all, but we have to admit, we've yet to feel the spirit of Halloween embrace us in its clammy, probably zombified grasp. Luckily, this week's roundup includes a couple of horror themed creations that are helping us to get into the spirit of that most sacred of holidays.
Speaking of which, do you have a favourite Halloween decoration? A terrifying tradition that you partake in every year in order to celebrate this time of year? A go-to costume for trick or treating? We'd love to hear all about it. Us? Well, it should be obvious by now, but our costume of choice is the horrifying Mm hivemind we all inhabit that is slowly consuming us into its immortal bosom. On with the show!
When the wind blows#
Estimated playtime: 5 minutes
We don't really like to go out in nature a lot. Truth be told, the outside world is scary... and frankly a bit mucky. So whenever a soothing yet poignant nature based platformer pops up, it reminds us that maybe we should go and touch grass every now and then. If, like us, then you appreciate short, nature themed platforming experiences, then you should definitely check out When the wind blows.
You play as a wandering leaf - which for a platformer sounds like a recipe for disaster because, y'know, physics. But the jumping action here has been tightly designed for precision accuracy over the control of your foliage friend. Said leaf explores a variety of industrialised locations with a stark, minimalistic colour palette, providing a sharp look at how quickly human development has overtaken nature. More importantly, it shows why that's a terrible thing in some instances, as this world seems designed to torture and destroy the nature around it. It's a powerful look at the repercussions of human-led climate change, yet the ending hints at hope for a positive future. Short, sweet, and powerful. Just like us, really.
Estimated playtime: N/A
Sometimes you come across a creation in Dreams and know immediately that you have to experience whatever this thing is. That happened to us with Sweet Dreams - as soon as we saw those adorable little kitty eyes staring out at us from the thumbnail, we knew we had to check this animation out right away. And we're very glad we did, as Sweet Dreams gave us all the fuzzy warm feelings we needed to fill the endless void of our bottomless souls. It's a short, looping animation, featuring a bunch of animal friends co-existing out in some fields - yet it's so utterly heartwarming that it feels like you're right there amongst them. As if you too are waddling alongside the swan, sniffing things with the doggo, and staring intently at the fishpond with the cat. It's perfectly pulled together by the accompanying music, which is a boppy electro-pop track that feels wonderfully at home with the calm natural atmosphere of the scene. And those fish in the pond look good enough to eat. Goldfish sushi, anyone? [Calm down, Sméagol. We're still in litigation from all that swan you ate last month. - Ed.]
幕末乱舞 J ZOMBIE SURVIVAL#
Estimated playtime: Replayable
If you've ever wanted to play a game featuring a chibi teenage girl wielding a gatling gun, then - first of all, you totally get us, and second, we've found it. 幕末乱舞 J ZOMBIE SURVIVAL is a wave based action game where you're attempting to fend off waves of zombies as a variety of different characters. Given that each character has a different weapon type and special move (choose from the gun wielding Haikara, sword brandishing Ihoujin and Samurai, or the dagger loving Ninja) there's a clear sense of replay value here as you get to grips with each character. Trying out each character's play style and moveset provides you with the opportunity to improve your zombie slaying skills, and help you beat that all-encompassing high score. The zombies themselves start off slow and sluggish but quickly pick up the pace, meaning that you have to really be on your toes - and triggers - if you want to rack up those points. And the gorgeous chibi style helps to take the edge off all the murdering of those reanimated corpses. Not that you should feel guilty about it. Zombies don't have feelings, do they?
Estimated playtime: N/A
We're not sure what really needs to be said about this creation beyond the fact that Nico is the most adorable bull we've ever seen. But the editorial gods would surely shame us for not making the word number go up, so let's expand a bit, shall we?
Frankly, Nico The Incredibly Relaxed Bull (surely the next best-selling children's book) looks like he's living his best life. Chilling in the countryside, chewing the cud, taking in the sunshine. And accompanied by an '80s style electro tune as he does so. Bliss. Nico is also very well-animated, with particularly satisfying eye and tongue movements that are subtle yet show off just how classy this hairy wrecking ball can be. We could all stand to be a bit more like Nico.
Estimated playtime: 30 minutes
Remind us never to go to Germany, will ya? Not that we think all of Germany is that scary, but we're just worried that we'll get lost and somehow end up in a forest as witch bait. As unlike The Witch Hunter of Wertheim, we don't tend to have a crossbow handy to defend ourselves (note to self: buy crossbow). But we'll happily sit down and play through a slice of witch-infested digital Germany in Wertheim any day.
Set in 1714, Wertheim sees a retired witch hunter do the classic noir-alcoholic-detective-with-a-dead-wife thing of coming out of retirement for One Last Case - in this, er, case, hunting down and killing a witch that has been abducting children in the local area. Armed with only your wits and a massive deadly weapon, you'll expore a variety of different environments to hunt her down. Something that we love about this creation is that it feels like playing a silent movie, with a sepia film grain aesthetic, silent movie-style captions, and sparing use of music or sound effects. It's incredibly effective, and when the game breaks its own ruleset, it makes for some wonderfully surprising scares. Wertheim isn't the longest game, but it's absolutely nailed the pacing and suspense of this horror thriller. On Friday the 13th, this could be exactly the thing to get you in the spooky mood.
Check out the playable edition of this week's Dreamview Weekly Roundup right here in Dreams!
Want more recommendations for the best games to play in Dreams? Go here(opens in new tab) to find our "7 Of The Best" articles, over 100 other Dreamview Weekly Roundups, reviews, previews and more!
The Dreams User Guide is a work-in-progress. Keep an eye out for updates as we add more learning resources and articles over time.