Lucid Dream Review – PC

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I love adventure games of all types, but the classic point & click adventures have to be my favorite of all the variations out there.  Recently out of Early Access, Lucid Dream is now officially launched on Steam, and for those who haven’t already been playing let me tell you why you should.  Lucid Dream is a very authentic adventure filled with amazing art, emotional music, and a story so compelling it’s hard to stop playing this game once you start.

You’ll be playing as Lucy, a young girl confined to a wheelchair in the real world but finds the freedom and ability to walk around in the dream world, and this is where she must go in order to save her mother.  You are instantly sucked into the world of Lucid Dream with its stunning artwork.  Every background is a picture worth framing and little Lucy pops off the page with a design that reminded me of another little girl who travelled to Wonderland.  There were even moments and visuals that had me reminiscing about the Narnia stories.

The story is fantastic and loaded with plot twists and an ending that will have you reflecting on your experience long after the credits roll.  There is so much to do and so many places to explore.  Each new location introduces you to new characters with at least one main objective to complete along with numerous other puzzles along the way.  There are over 200 items to be found and used in the game, and while many of the puzzles are rooted in sound intuitive logic, I have to admit there were a few seemingly random puzzles mixed in that had me reduced to trial and error to stumble on the solution.  These didn’t ruin the game, but it was mildly disappointing in what was otherwise a near-perfect adventure game.  Thankfully, there is a hint system available unless you are playing on the hardest difficulty.

The pacing of Lucid Dream is perfect, and you are never swallowed up in pages of narrative or extended conversations.   There is an economy of exposition that gives you just enough to get started then allows you to make all the discoveries along the way.  Even the way the game plays is tuned for maximum enjoyment.  The UI is simple and the entire game can be played with just a mouse, making for a casual, relaxing experience.

Aside from a few random crashes and several puzzles with totally “unexpected” solutions Lucid Dream is one of the finest adventure games I’ve played on the PC this year.  It’s also a game perfected suited for mobile devices, and I would love to see this come out for my phone or tablet.  It’s a comfortable length, taking me a few days of casual play to complete, and while there are multiple difficulty settings I found no immediate compulsion to replay the game.  Thorough explorers should get all the trophies on their first pass, making this a good value for the $15 asking price.

Lucid Dream is a perfect balance of story and gameplay filled with dazzling imagery and immersive atmosphere and music.  The dream world moments are suitably surreal, which directly translates into creative level and gameplay design promoting discovery and creative thinking.  It’s a fantastic adventure that will appeal to gamers of all ages and skill levels and a game that should not be missed by anyone who claims to enjoy adventure games.

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