Due to a studio-wide holiday, for the first time since records began, there was no Dreamview Weekly Roundup last week. As you’ll doubtless all know by now, this meant that the concept of ‘Friday’ momentarily winked out of existence. Chaos ensued.
Digital calendars everywhere were instantly scrambled. We heard reports of people stumbling out of a certain American restaurant chain in confusion, clutching their mozzarella sticks and crying. But it wasn’t all bad news: everyone agreed that we’d all collectively hallucinated that one song from pop icon Rebecca Black. Including Rebecca!
Still, we all got through it somehow - and now, the Roundup is back in its rightful place, ready to recommend five excellent creations that you should investigate in Dreams this weekend. Happy Friday! Thank goodness it’s back!
Stepping outside of your bubble is scary - an idea that Commonote communicates all too well. You may recognise the name FeyzPS: this is the Japanese developer behind Impy-nominated character Lash; the same character design mastery elevates this free-flowing collectathon. The first time you move outside of your underwater home bubble is dramatic, as you quickly realise your breath meter is dropping. Stray too far without grabbing a gulp of air back home, and our hero - a glimmering, fragile bundle of nerves and bubbles - sinks to their knees and dissolves into black dust. As you fight the fear and push yourself further, you’ll find various power-ups allowing you to be bolder in your exploration, until you reach an ending that reminds you of just how much world is out there - and inside us.
Lost At Sea - A Turkey In A Storm
Look, gang, we’re not sure we have an explanation for this one. We won’t dress it up (for one thing, we have no twine or herbs): it’s a raw turkey on a storm-tossed island, singing a song about its own existence. Dreams, baby! We’re not sure how much they paid this post-alive bird to perform but it must have been a lot, because it’s really going for it with the poses and the vocals, despite not having a head or mouth. Maybe it’s just telepathically beaming this tune into our brains.
Calling all patting-your-head-while-rubbing your stomach experts: this is your game. It might look like a couch co-op game at first glance, but actually SCRAMBLE! is a 3D platformer that gives you control over both avatars at once. Anyone who’s played Brothers: A Tale Of Two Sons will be familiar with the control scheme, which ties one thumbstick to the blue puppet and the other to the red; the corresponding triggers are their respective jump buttons. Here, however, the concept isn’t used for narrative impact but for tactical depth: you’re trying to get to the end of each level as quickly as possible. Do you play it safe by moving one at a time, or try to manoeuvre both characters simultaneously as much as possible to achieve a higher score? The flat art style, while pretty, causes some issues with depth perception in later levels, which can frustrate - hopefully multitasking maestro DirtyFlusher might be able to find some time to tweak it.
This is a truly epic RPG boss fight to remember. The intro cutscene is almost as long as that list of collaborators - but it’s of great quality, with stellar voice acting really setting the high stakes, high fantasy mood. You’ll soon be confronted with the terrifying and enchanting Princess Of Moon - using Cosmic Tale’s three heroes and active-time-battle combat system, you’ll need to chip away at this cosmic foe’s enormous health bar, balancing magical attacks, defensive moves and making careful use of your healing powers. It’s a lengthy fight, but the presentation is breathtaking, with the camera sweeping around the scene as the action glitters and dances under your thumbs.
Sure, Kazuma Kiryu is a pretty swell guy. But the Yakuza protagonist’s hair game cannot hope to match the sheer power of Kijapani BRAWL’s hero’s majestic afro. This survival beat-’em-up takes plenty of inspiration from Ryu Ga Gotoku’s games, as well as Streets Of Rage, pitting you against waves of similarly shirtless thugs who are fixing to knock you out. (Or perhaps just to get to the convenience store behind you. There’s no way of knowing which.) Punches and kicks feel meaty and satisfying thanks to neat hit sparks, rumble and clever audio design, and the environmental destruction both in and outside of the shop add so much to the feeling that you’re causing real chaos on the streets of Tokyo. Make sure to check the controls before heading in, as they’re a little buried - the payoff of lightning-blasting someone through the sliding glass doors with your special move is well worth it.
Want an easy way to view all of these creations in one convenient collection? Check out the playable edition of this week's Dreamview Weekly Roundup right here in Dreams!
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