The game starts out with a young couple moving into a new apartment. It's a slow burn through episode one, as you learn about the couple's history and how they're expecting a child. You'll also discover their new neighbors, some of whom are a bit strange. But then something weird happens when you discover a huge machine, the titular device that lets you explore people's dreams and view their subconscious. The gameplay is simple, reminiscent of classic PC adventure games like Monkey Island, but the visual style is what helps differentiate it, and bring the dreamscapes to life.
But that's not to say it hasn't been rewarding. "Experiencing the organic process of creating the game, the way happy accidents have lead us down strange and fruitful paths, that has been amazing," says Gustafsson. "Seeing some new artwork by Erik, getting unexpected ideas from it, being able to execute on whims without some gigantic production machine grinding to a halt. Following a plan, but being open to change should better ideas come along. Letting the game tell us what it wants to be. That’s been a lot of fun."
That experience is nearing its end, however. The series has already taken more than six years to build, but it's almost done; after today's episode there's just one more to finish. And when that happens, neither is quite sure what they'll do.
"Initially I’ll just re-read all reviews over and over again until I fall asleep," says Zaring. "Then, hopefully, I’ll start dreaming about new beautiful things to come."
You can check out The Dream Machine right here.