Welcome Time Wasters!
I’ll be honest with you, I’ve had a really sucky week. I’ve basically been sick since Sunday with only a couple of days this week where I actually felt like more than a blob of germs laying on a couch. This, on top of it being Thanksgiving week, means that the Time Waster was the furthest thing from my mind. Luckily I was able to come out of my grogginess late on Friday and find Dreamcharmer.
Dreamcharmer is a platforming game that puts the player in the role of Lowell, a dream alchemist. Lowell has been dealing with voices in his head from a figure called the Sleepless Girl. She convinces the professor to take up his dream alchemy backpack and take to London’s streets to find out what it plaguing the people’s dreams.
Lowell’s backpack allows him to store three different elements necessary for dream alchemy. The three elements are red, yellow and blue. On their own, the elements allow him to throw fire balls, dash through enemies and reflect attacks. He can also combine the elements to create chain lightning and a vampirism attack. I never really used the chain lightning attack, but that vampire one is the only way to heal, which makes it a necessary skill.
I say that healing is necessary in Dreamcharmer, but don’t let me fool you into believing that this game is difficult. All of the basic enemies are incredibly easy to defeat and even the two bosses in the game go down without much of a challenge. There’s also not much to the platforming either, so don’t go getting your hopes up there. If you can’t tell already, Dreamcharmer is a bit lacking in, well, the game department. Sure it functions, but it doesn’t do much else. Even then the platforming feels a bit clunky at times.
Maybe you’re thinking that there’s a great story here to help make up for the lack of good gameplay. I really wish this was the case, but it isn’t. The story is very basic and bare bones, but what can you expect from such a short game. The exposition in the game is also forced and there are some horrible puns that feel completely out of place with the atmosphere of the game.
What Dreamcharmer does bring to the table is an interesting art style. The game looks like a story book and brings a lot of charm with it. It’s obvious that a great amount of care went into making the game look good and the creator succeeds in this regard.
Dreamcharmer also features a few basic sound effects that easily fit into the game. There’s also a couple of songs that match well with whats happening on screen. This includes a very whimsical one that goes well with adventuring through Victorian-era London at night.
Overall, Dreamcharmer is a game with a lot of style and charm, but not much else. Don’t get me wrong, you can sell me a game on charm, but there has to be something else there to keep me interested after I’ve bought into it. That may be a poor analogy since Dreamcharmer is a free browser game, but it’s the best I can come up with right now. Either way, I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and here’s to leftover turkey sandwiches for days to come!
Dreamcharmer earns 2.5 GiN Gems out of 5!