Dreaming Sarah Review

Dreaming Sarah is a beautifully crafted indie title developed by Asteristic Game Studio and published by Ratalaika Games. As with most titles published by Ratalaika, this game can be completed in a single sitting. This does not, however, indicate a lack of content. In this adventure/platformer we take control of Sarah, a young girl who is inexplicably in a coma and needs our help to guide her through her own subconscious dream world.

While this game does not provide a tutorial, it follows a simple platforming and exploration formula, tasking you with finding items to further your ability to explore the dreamscape and uncover the mystery of what landed Sarah in her comatose state. Filled with interesting and bizarre characters, Sarah will need to help recover lost items in exchange for hints and other useful items. Along the way, Sarah will discover items that make her journey more manageable. The first item most players are likely to encounter is the umbrella, allowing Sarah to glide across large expanses.


Exploration is the name of the game. Sarah will cross sandy deserts, frozen wastelands, haunted mansions, and even the depths of hell. Even though this may sound arduous, the game is quite casual and does not punish the player for trying new things. When the player is confronted with death, they simply respawn at the beginning of the room.

The background music does a great job of setting the tone for the levels, often invoking uncertainty while also giving a sense of calm. The graphics lend themselves well to this type of game. While not being much more than a few sprites, the colours are cute and convey a sense of playfulness.

Conclusion

In summary, Dreaming Sarah is an inside look at the subconscious told through platforming and light puzzling. its short runtime is perfect for a rainy afternoon in or something to play quickly as a pallet cleanser between larger games.

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This game was tested and reviewed on Xbox. All of the opinions and insights here are subject to that version. Game provided by publisher.
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Good
  • The visuals compliment the tone of the game
  • Exploration is fun and rewarding
  • Long enough for the low price
Bad
  • I encountered a few non game breaking bugs
7.1
Good
Gameplay - 8
Graphics - 7
Audio - 7
Longevity - 6.5
Written by
I've been playing videogames since my mum bought me an amiga for Christmas. I don't have a favourite platform but I like to play as many games as I can with the Souls series being my favourite. Fromsoftware are my preferred developers - the more difficult the videogame the better! I have a soft spot for 8-bit games and 8-bit soundtracks. Co-op games are also high up on my list.

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