Dreamview Weekly Roundup #26
Brace yourselves for this one: the twenty-sixth edition of the Dreamview Weekly Roundup marks half a year of Roundups. Wow. Six whole months. The Big Semiannual. Perhaps it’s a little early to be celebrating - but seeing as though the tone of the Roundup regularly ranges from subtle threat to sheer idiocy, it’s a miracle that Dreams' bouncer-type Hector hasn’t turfed us out of the Dreamiverse yet.
Rejoice with us, then, as we present five fantastic creations for you to check out in Dreams. We’ve got big names, throwbacks and even diamonds in the rough this week - have a read. We’ll just be hiding over here, behind this big box. If you see Hector come by, do the secret signal, yeah? You know the one.
by beardofcats88, Phreaky, DirtyHarolds, Hackjaz, NotreDamin, oLiamS47o, Mystical_ Vortex_, LOLpokemanz, atheistsw, DissObeyGaming, TAPgiles, ReddishBoat, animeboy0021, DissObeyGames, Sir_Satire, Ichiban_Keneda, RadLaddy, pinkbelt
A huge collaborative event six months in the making, entirely concepted and driven by the dreams coMmunity, DreamsFest 2021 is a music festival like no other. It brings together over 30 on-stage performances from contributors all over the world: you simply bring up the fast travel map to fly straight to one of the many continents, then head to the stage to see the local lineup perform after you’re done exploring.
The list of collaborators up there gives you a clue as to the scale of work here, but it cannot be overstated just how much of an achievement this event is. It goes beyond just the head-boppingly brilliant array of musical acts: there’s extensive character customisation, a brilliant cast of festival characters, campgrounds full of coMmunity-made tents, an arcade featuring exclusive minigames by top creators, an in-built ‘passport’ that keeps track of your travels, and sumptuous environments to snap shareable photos in. Everything has been thought of.
Director beardofcats88 and team have done it all without the kind of QA and production help that we at Media Molecule receive for our events, making it all the more impressive. The official DreamsFest launch stream was something special, a real moment of unity and celebration - but this is one festival that will never end, being available in Dreams forever. No excuses, then: this is, in every possible way, an unmissable experience.
A Reddit post about underrated Dreams creations encouraged us to land our spacecraft on Planet 213 - and what an excellent recommendation it was. This is a truly alien world, a bright, plasticky and ominous scene that’s part-Rick and Morty, part-Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. Meaty flowers calmly spit out seeds in slow-floating conga lines; dragonflies with propeller-like ruffs buzz about as we explore the caves. Halfway through the 60-second parkour minigame that’s included, we hear an unsettling sound - which turns out to be a giant tumbleweed-esque sphere chasing us between tree-leaps, prompting us to let out a worried “Urgh!”. Surreal and littered with secrets, this is a credit to jiar300’s vibrant imagination.
Keys? Wallet? Phone? Zombies!#
While you may know them best for adventure tale Topher Thebes and the Enchanted Crystal, it’s been wonderful to see VerbalCreative turning catchy concepts into bite-size - but still fully-formed - games. Verbal’s thoroughly entertaining Megapenguin level is one example, but Keys? Wallet? Phone? Zombies! followed hot on its heels. It tasks you with running around your house to collect the keys, wallet and phone (hidden randomly in rooms and cupboards at the start of each run) that you need to leave - without being munched on by the prowling undead. The goofiness of the zombies’ designs is outweighed by the sheer dread induced by Verbal’s audio design, which raises the hackles at every turn; the design of the ‘game over’ screen is delightful, too, crossing off each word in the title according to what you managed to scoop up before. A horror game streamer’s worst nightmare - Slenderman is shivering in its boots.
It’s no secret that we’re fans of rocky_with_a_gun’s signature made-in-Dreams art style - the chosen aesthetic for their gorgeous upcoming ghost story, Afterimage, which we featured heavily at DreamsCom ‘21. Any new glimpse is always a treat: Working Hard is just that, a seemingly autobiographical portrait of the artist captured in a moment of fatigue after beavering away at their project (and, by the looks of the description, a hectic home move). There are even a few Easter eggs to spot: the poster of “The Third Place” leaves us curious enough to do a quick Internet search, and the results are fascinating - a reference to Afterimage’s library, perhaps, or even Dreams itself?
Esmerelda: Back For More#
Dreams is all about weird ideas and unexpected combinations, and this hidden gem serves up both. The opening cutscene is so rib-ticklingly bizarre that we assume Esmerelda: Back For More is a meme animation. It’s a villainous monologue delivered by the gigantic Esmerelda, Eater Of Worlds - who, erm, literally eats worlds and brandishes a ketchup bottle, leading to such immortal lines as, “For too long have the worlds been allowed to marinate”. Once the introduction is over, however, an entire comedy-seasoned RPG opens up. We’re talking multiple areas, combat where melee strikes help recharge your fireball mana, an airborne movement system based on ‘flaps’ (which you can collect more of as you explore, much like in chilled-out platformer A Short Hike) - and a Navi-but-weird helper who gets hilariously passive-aggressive if you skip their tutorialising. It’s no looker, but if you don’t mind a few rough edges in exchange for a great concept, this is a fresh little morsel.
Want an easy way to view all of these creations in one convenient collection? Check out the playable version of this week’s Dreamview Weekly Roundup right here in Dreams!
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.