Game Review – Dream Chronicles: The Chosen Child Merits a Closer Look In More Ways Than One

Game Review – Dream Chronicles: The Chosen Child Merits a Closer Look In More Ways Than One
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Platforms:

Windows PC, Steam

Game Name:

Dream Chronicles: The Chosen Child

Publisher(s):

PlayFirst

Developer(s):

KatGames

Genre(s):

Adventure, Puzzle, Family Games

Release Date:

August 2009

Developer Summary:

Unlock the secrets of the mysterious fairy realm in the third installment of the award-winning Dream Chronicles® series, Dream Chronicles: The Chosen Child. Discover hidden clues and challenging puzzles as you join Faye on her quest to save her daughter from the clutches of Lilith and reveal the secret prophecy of The Chosen Child in this all-new hidden object adventure with unexpected twists.

What We Think:

Dream Chronicles®: The Chosen Child™ is a title with lots of trademark and registered copyright registration characters built in, but really is a Myst-inspired hidden-object puzzle game released on Steam in August 2009 developed by KatGames and published by GamesFirst.

At first glance it is another installment in a seemingly countless BishFishGames / PlayFirst catalog of pretty picture games where you click around until you have located all the required objects in order to move a thin plot forward.

Dream Chronicles telescope screenshot

But despite its obvious influences, there is something a little different about the Dream Chronicles; something about this title feels a little more polished, with better production value that can be felt in the eerie sound cues, slightly more involved puzzles and the overall complexity of the procedural sequencing required to move from stage to stage.

The premise is that you awaken in your Tim Burtonesque treehouse with amnesia and fading dreams of a husband and daughter whom you can’t recall ever having met.  As you try to piece together your whereabouts, some kind of faerie specter begins messing with your business and so you must find a way to outwit this magic by reassembling the pieces, both literally and figuratively.

Perhaps what works best is that the items you must discover tend to have a narrative throughline – for example on every level you will discover dream jewels that will be placed into faerie molds that help you unlock new portals inside the nexus room.

Dream Chronicles The Chosen Child screenshot

Typically, this genre will have you fishing for random objects in a game of click everywhere until you find something, but here, there is a kind of logic to the elements required.  Even if you don’t find all the dream jewels, you will be allowed to move on, but coming up short of sufficient beads will leave you high and dry, so make sure to look!

While Dream Chronicles is nowhere near as complex as any of the Myst titles, it is a terrific casual game that players of any age or level of gameplay will find engaging.  With gorgeous graphics, well designed and haunting audio design, clever puzzles and an intriguing storyline it deserves a look beyond the typical puzzle game enthusiasts.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Check out Dream Chronicles: The Chosen Child on Steam

Indie-Game-Freak

[Los Angeles] The Indie Game Freak eats games for breakfast. It is a horror to behold, but it's good for the ecosystem.

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