The Let's Play Archive

Dare to Dream

by Mr. Swoon

Part 12: Episode 1: Skulls, Eyes, and Blue

Episode 1: Skulls, Eyes, and Blue

CliffyB posted:

I did a game called "Dare to Dream" when I was a teenager in which I poured all of my "Crow" like goth angst into. It sold something like five copies.

When I said we're going to get gothy, I wasn't kidding. It's probably better to just show rather than tell in this case...

Before you stands a wall that reminds you of a prison. However, this wall seems to breathe out more oppression and pain than any mortal structure could.

Glowing red eyes, skulls, the colour blue. This is what we have to look forward to... That, and pixel hunting. Even on the first screen you have 2 very easy to miss items:

In the pile of skulls you have a cockroach, while on the wall you have a handful of dust. The roach is the worst one by far, as every skull in the pile is clickable, and there is no way of knowing that one of those has an item unless you click every little section of that pile. The pile on the right side of the screen is also clickable, so you have double the effort. But loot is loot, so let's check out what we have so far:

The Unicorn Key feels warm in your hands. It gives you the only sense of security in this Hell.
It looks like dust.
The cockroach is as dead as a doorknob. It looks extra crispy.

Maybe I can find some original recipe cockroach later. Let's press on.

This is the oddest cemetery you've ever seen. Moldy, discoloured crosses are placed around dead trees.

Hey, guess what! Every cross has something to read on it. Maybe it'll be like other video games and have the developer's names or something clever on them.

In the middle of the night there is crying... But no child.
In the middle of the night, there is screaming but no face.
In the middle of the night there is love... But no one is there.
In the middle of the night there is pain... but no feeling.
In the middle of the night, there is fear... but nothing to be afraid of.

...Aw. After reading that, a studded belt suddenly appeared on my waist. It has a skull-shaped buckle. Anyway! This is pretty much the central hub. There's an east path, a west path, and 2 northern paths. We'll head west first.

At first glance the vegetation here seems to be ordinary dead trees, however when you look closer you notice every tree has a face burnt into it, a face that appears to know something that you do not.

Well then, let's ask a tree if it knows something!

Hello, I'm Tyler. Who are you?
Aye, I be a Bloody Stump. What do I be lookin' like?
What can you tell me about this 'NiteMare'?
Well, to the northeast you should find the Cave that no one goes near, odd place I hear. Nearby you will find the River of Sorrow, and right now you are in the Forest of Agony. That be all I care to tell at the moment.
What do you know about 'Christian'?
He is a night without a day, aye, that he is. We, the trees, are the lost feelings, he is Hate itself, the All-Powerful in this realm. Beware his wrath, young 'un.

Talking to the Scottish Stump again unlocks some more dialogue...

Greetings, Bloody Stump.
Good evenin', boy. How fare you?
Why is this forest known as 'The Forest of Agony'?
Because here be where all the unexpressed pain be going, therefore it is named 'Agony'.
How did you end up the way you are?
Aye, that be an interestin' tale in itself. You see, once in a while Christian would come by and harm someone in this realm. He noticed I was developin' human-like qualities, so he ripped off my top and burned it. Well, he left his dagger behind, inside of me. If ya have the chance, please remove it!

So once the tree tells us about it, we can start digging inside his body for prizes.

The craftsmanship on this dagger is remarkable. The blade is sterling silver, and the skull on the top is carved in the finest obsidian stone.

There's also the small matter of the newspaper in that one tree branch. We can't reach it, and Tyler doesn't feel like climbing any more trees (pussy). So what can we use?

Well, I didn't get the paper, but at least it's out of the tree. I guess we'll have to hunt it down next time. I have the feeling that thing is going to be important for very stupid reasons.