One of the bigger booths in the PlayStation area of EGX 2018 is devoted to Dreams. This is the latest game from the team at Media Molecule who are best known for creating Little Big Planet. In their previous games, there have always been elements of user-created content. Well, Dreams takes this to the next level. You can create almost anything. Obviously, where this is a demo at a video game show, they weren’t allowing people to create their own content. What there was, though, was a selection of different games that we could play through to see the breadth of variety on offer. Here’s what I played –
This starts off with you playing as a square. All you are able to do is move by jumping either left or right. I quickly figured out that I had to move through the right-hand side of the screen. This created new areas that I had to jump my way through. After a few of these new areas, a pen appeared on the screen and drew legs on to my square. My square could now walk and jump. This allowed me to traverse the next few areas. Then the pen appeared again and all of a sudden, I was a cube in a 3D environment. I walked into the distance and that was the end of the game.
As the name suggests, this was a space flying game. I was able to pilot a ship in a fully three-dimensional environment. I was tasked with taking out enemies who appeared with a square, red target around them. These foes were trying to damage the space station that I was sworn to protect. I set about chasing them down and shooting them. I struggled with the aiming to start with as I was expecting to have to ‘lead’ my aim (shooting where they’re going to be, not where they are). In fact, the targeting was quite generous. Get your target pretty much over the enemy’s ship and your projectiles will follow them. Once I had destroyed all the enemies, the game was over.
Possibly the weirdest offering on show here, Given Time is a text-based adventure set at a party. I gradually navigated my way around the house until I found something in the attic. I was then forced to do it all again but I managed to find more information about what is in the attic. As I kept being forced to restart, I kept getting more and more information and items, being able to unlock new interactions and areas. In the end, I gave up as I had all the elements a book told me I needed to destroy the creature in the attic but it just wouldn’t let me do it.
This is a game that looks like it’s trying to be Ori and the Blind Forest. You play as a little creature who is making their way through a wooded area. At points, you have to transform into a spot of light. In this form, you can float over large gaps as long as you collect other light dots along the way. The level that was on offer was particularly short but it certainly caught my attention and left me wanting more.
Please Hug Me
Possibly the weirdest offering on show, you play as a robot trying to get close to a group of creatures that look like traffic cones. As you move towards them, they back away from you. Move them too far and they will fall off the edge of the platform you are all on. When they all fall off the game stops. I would love to say that I was able to get my robot to hug one of the cones but, boy, was it tricky.
There were other games to play but my time was up and some of the others required two players anyway. The future of Dreams is very much in the hands of the player-base. If they create enough cool stuff, this could snowball and become a great project with some truly unique experiences. However, if it doesn’t connect with people it could struggle. Let’s hope this ends up more of a success like Little Big Planet than Microsoft’s Project Spark failure.