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Game Info:

Lucid Dream
Developed By: Dali Games
Published By: Dali Games
Released: October 8, 2018
Available On: macOS, Windows
Genre: Point-and-click adventure; horror; puzzle
ESRB Rating: None
Number of Players: Singleplayer
Price: $14.99 on Steam
(Amazon Affiliate Link)

Thank you Dali Games for sending us this game to review!

Lucid Dream is a point-and-click adventure game that centers around a young, wheelchair-bound girl whose name is unspecified at the very beginning. She lives with her single mother who seems to be suffering from anxiety/depression. The young girl, however, clearly cares about her mother, and she wants to help her fight these feelings inside herself. The only way that she can seem to do this is by entering the dream world and trying to find a solution there. It is here that we learn her name (Lucy).

The player is never told why Lucy is bound to a wheelchair, but the game does make one thing clear in the difference between the worlds: Lucy’s ability to walk in the dream world. She is perfectly able to move as she pleases in her dreams, and the nightgown/dress she wears is noticeably lighter in the dream world than in the real world. However, no matter what movement ability Lucy has, she is only able to interact with objects around her that are within a certain radius, and she has to move to access something that is farther away.

Lucid Dream
Highlights:

Strong Points: Visually pleasing art style; fitting music for the atmosphere of the story; many different types of puzzles; three different difficulties to suit a player’s experience level
Weak Points: Puzzles can get quite hard, even in the easiest difficulty; clues can be very confusing, several times I had to rely on a YouTube walkthrough
Moral Warnings: Many references to the supernatural; for example, there are references to Greek and Egyptian mythology; protagonist signs contract to sell her soul; she is tampering with her mind, and also with time; protagonist is being taken to a psychiatrist because of this; dreamcatcher appearing repeatedly

Once Lucy enters the dream world (which is where most of the story and action takes place), most of the supernatural content starts to show up. For instance, Lucy has to sign a contract with a figure by the name of the Oneiromancer to let him use her soul for power. Another instance is when Lucy meets stone figures with names and histories reminiscent of ancient Greek and Egyptian myths, and there is an obelisk present as well. There are also times when Lucy has to use mirrors as portals into the dreamworld. There was a moment where Lucy had to steal the shell off of a sleeping beetle to reveal polka-dot underwear, and there was even a moment when the protagonist has to play with time in order to try to fix things. Alchemy and essences are also present, and potion-mixing as well (with fantastical ingredients, but it’s still there). All of these things have caused poor Lucy to seem delusional, and her mother has resorted to taking her to the psychiatrist.

The graphics of Lucid Dream are very interesting, as the art is a mix between a cartoony and realistic style. If your screen is not 16:9, however, the top and bottom of the screen will leave the desktop that is there visible and able to interact with. The sound effects are decent, and the background music fits the theme of the game quite well. There is no voice acting whatsoever. The text that helps progress the story isn’t perfect either; while it’s written pretty well, there are a few typos and spelling mistakes. From what I can remember, however, there is no vulgar language.

The controls are very easy to grasp, and there are different amounts of clues depending on the difficulty you choose. There are three difficulties: Sleepwalker, Dreamer, and Dream Interpreter. Each difficulty has a different amount of clues available, and after activating a clue, you need to wait a certain time before being able to activate the next one. Judging from what the given explanations said about the different difficulties, there is not a difference in the puzzles themselves for each difficulty, it's only the amount of help you are given to solve the puzzle. I chose Sleepwalker (the easiest), and even then I had to refer to a walkthrough because I was thoroughly stuck. (However, puzzles are not my strong suit.) Due to this, it took me about seven hours to beat the game. There is a tutorial in the menu for you to get the basics down of the controls if you need it. As far as I can tell, though, it’s only accessible from the menu while you’re playing in a level, of which there are seventeen. However, you might want to watch out, as the game may randomly crash (it did for me once). However, it’ll probably only happen once or twice while the game is being played. There is also no Steam Cloud, so wherever you happen to be in the game is exclusive to the device you are on.

Lucid Dream
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 76%
Gameplay - 14/20
Graphics - 8/10
Sound - 7/10
Stability - 4/5
Controls - 5/5

Morality Score - 85%
Violence - 9/10
Language - 10/10
Sexual Content - 10/10
Occult/Supernatural - 3.5/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 10/10

When you launch Lucid Dream and play it for the first time, it will ask you to pick one of three save slots, as well as one of three difficulties (as mentioned above). The menu itself has buttons for options (but you can’t change screen ratio), as well as buttons for loading, starting a new game, and picking a level. When you beat Lucid Dream, there is no credits roll whatsoever, and there isn't one available in tha main menu either.

The story of Lucid Dream is quite interesting, but I would not recommend letting younger kids play it, as there are dark undertones and some very suspenseful moments that younger kids wouldn’t be able to handle. But if you’re looking for a dark story-centric point-and-click adventure with lots of surrealism, then Lucid Dream is the game for you!

About the Author

Kaitlyn

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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