Dreaming Sarah is an adventure platformer where you play as Sarah, a girl who is in a coma. Explore the world around her and help her wake up!
User reviews:
Recent:
Very Positive (76 reviews) - 94% of the 76 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Very Positive (676 reviews) - 92% of the 676 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Mar 12, 2015

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May 23

About the OSX and Linux versions

Hi everyone,

As some of you know and I've mentioned in the bug report thread, I'm having a lot of trouble updating the game. I decided to explain it better in an announcement.

Basically, Dreaming Sarah is made using a program called Construct 2. It's a game making program that works much like RPG Maker if you have ever used that, but in my opinion it's a little more robust.

This program mainly builds your game in HTML5. This means that the only native way that you can get your game working is by running it on a browser, like Chrome of Firefox.

So, to make my game run on Windows/OSX/Linux platforms, I had to rely on a tool called NW.js. This tool takes a HTML5 game and wraps it in a executable for these OS's.

When I first released Dreaming Sarah, it worked great for all platforms. I had a rough time testing it (since I only have a Windows PC that isn't even that good) but after a lot of help from some friends and days and nights installing Hackintosh and Ubuntu on my PC, I did test all of it and everything worked.

So what's the problem? Well, after release more bugs were found, so I decided to fix them. After fixing a few I found out that the newest version of NW.js, which is a tool I need to run the game on Windows/OSX/Linux, has become imcompatible with OSX, and broken on Linux. It also will not work with Steamworks, so if I update the game, there's no way to add achievements or anything like that anymore.

On top of that, the old version of the OSX build that was up on Steam stopped working and I'm not even sure why. My guess is that there was some kind of update on OSX that's breaking my game, since it's using an old version of NW.js. The linux version also seems to be incompatible with SteamOS for now, for various reasons. And the option to make the game fullscreen won't work unless you manually modify a file inside of it, which really sucks.

So, because of these problems, I've decided to pull the OSX/Linux versions from the store temporarily. If you already bought the game and play on these platforms and it did work, rest assured that you can still play it! This will only stop other users from buying the game, since I can't directly support it right now. When I've got this problems sorted out, I'll update the entire game with all the bugs listed on the bugs thread fixed.

Once again, I'm really sorry and thanks for your patience.

3 comments Read more

About This Game

Inspired by the horror game Yume Nikki, Dreaming Sarah is a surreal adventure platformer game with puzzle elements, an engaging environment, an incredibly diverse cast of characters, and of course, a young girl named Sarah.

Sarah has been on an accident and is in a coma. It's up to you help her wake up by exploring her dream world while collecting items, talking to weird characters and exploring the world around her!

Key Features:
  • Explore different areas, like a forest, a haunted mansion and even the moon.
  • Collect gameplay-changing items, like an umbrella that helps Sarah glide around, a manifying glass that changes her size and a necklace that turns her into a fish.
  • Solve puzzles by paying attention to the scenery, taking notes and exploring the world around you.
  • Get up to two different endings depending on what you have found or done.
  • Visit old areas to find new things that appear as you progress in the game.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 4000 or better
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 200 MB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 8
    • Processor: Intel Core i5
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce 210 or higher
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Storage: 200 MB available space
Customer reviews
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Recent:
Very Positive (76 reviews)
Overall:
Very Positive (676 reviews)
Recently Posted
nmwhitehead
( 2.9 hrs on record )
Posted: July 24
This game is the best drug trip I have ever been on.

10/10. Would trip again.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
superpigsam
( 15.6 hrs on record )
Posted: July 23
Fantastic game, short but abundant in content.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Davinson
( 3.4 hrs on record )
Posted: July 21
Quite a plesant experience
Helpful? Yes No Funny
TofiLuk
( 2.8 hrs on record )
Posted: July 21
10/10 Good story. Very nice pixel indie game :)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
PsyRoy
( 1.9 hrs on record )
Posted: July 20
Gameplay is mostly walking around finding things to help you reach areas you couldn't before. Its appeal lies in the exploring, atmosphere and the subtle story. Can be finished within 2 hours. 6/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
MintSharpi
( 2.8 hrs on record )
Posted: July 16
Great short little game, you can probably 100% it in 3 hours. This game leaves you curious and actually want to play/explore.. this is a rare feature for me any more.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
MannyStobbart
( 3.6 hrs on record )
Posted: July 16
It mixes adventure and platform elements with puzzles always remaining original like its story enigmatically narrated employing a haunting art design.

I have not suffered any bugs which spoilt the walkthrough or the gameplay despite believing I have found two.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Brandon
( 2.4 hrs on record )
Posted: July 15
Cute little game, I quite enjoyed it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Florence Nightingale [ไน]
( 2.4 hrs on record )
Posted: July 15
Nice soundtrack.
Nice gameplay.
But too short and should have more story.

6/10 good game ;)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Tozic
( 2.1 hrs on record )
Posted: July 13
I loved every part of the game, I highly recommend it
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
2.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 1
A spiritual successor of Yume Nikki, while not being as deep and complicated, allows to explore twisted memories and dreams of the protagonist.
It surely is somewhat tedious and confusing to find one's way at first, given no instructions or directions, but paying attention to details as you go through the locations, and even randomly stumbling upon the required items allows one to arrange the puzzle piece by piece.
It's only natural for the dreams to not make sense and carry some very intimate symbolism, however some of the gruesome sights explicitly hint on the cause of Sarah's coma, while leaving space for interpretation.

OST deserves a special mention for setting the mood of the game - dreamy, nostalgic, sometimes unsettling.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 1
You'll wander around the mind of a girl and get lost constantly.

Atmosphere is indeed dreamy and actually i felt like in one of my own dreams, since each part becomes available afterwards with its shortcut.

You'll discover the plot along the way.

It is an easy-to-play and a short game, but it's fun and satisfying.
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
45 of 50 people (90%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: March 13, 2015
So after 100%ing this game and finding absolutely everything that you can do in 2 hours (would be under that if I didn't have issues with bugs, as the game just came out yesterday) I'm going to go ahead and recommend it but tell you a bunch of reasons why you shouldn't buy it if you're on the fence. Hang on while I explain.

I personally think this game is well made. I had a prepaid mastercard with 5 dollars left on it, and I looked at "recently released adventure games" and saw this. Being a fan of Yume Nikki and other games like it (because honestly, it's become a subgenre at this point) I decided to take the plunge. Usually I wouldn't put money down on a Yume Nikki fangame type thing because they're usually uninspired and involve a lot of bad game design, but this looked well made based on the screenshots and sold me with the trailer music. It was 3 dollars on sale, so I figured at the worst I could sell the trading cards and make back ~50% of what I spent on it.

First off: If you've played a Yume Nikki game before, this follows the formula to an almost funny extent.
Dreams? ☑
Looping levels? ☑
Weird Alien things? ☑
Drug references?
Hospital Level?
Creepy Eye Motif? ☑
Viscera Level?
Themes of questioning self and regret?

However, if you haven't or the above doesn't bother you by being sort of done before (and I was ok with it, because it was done fairly well) then prepare for a weird platformer with great music and colourful graphics.

Going to get the thing that might change out of the way: The game is horribly buggy. This is semi-excusable because I'm guessing this is this developer's first major release, and I'm making this review a day after it came out. The developer is in the discussion boards taking bug requests and trying to fix them, so this might change in the short future- but if you're buying this game at this very moment... Be aware!

Dreaming Sarah is about a girl in a coma (which should be the game's only spoiler, but isn't considering it's both in the banner ad AND the description for the game) who is exploring her dreaming state. You walk around areas and find powerups to either help you, interact with other characters, or just to have for completionist's sake. The graphics are very pretty, the controls are fluent and simple (but not really instructed in game- I had to just guess what keys did what which only took a few seconds) and the music is relaxing and at times a bit haunting. As shown by my 2 hour play time and 100% achievement completion, the game is really short. Is it worth the money? Well, for almost 4 dollars you can't go wrong, but for 6? Ehhhhhh...

Most games like this are free downloadable titles or flash games you can play, and if Dreaming Sarah was free, I'd be ridiculously impressed and recommend people to play it a bit more. But for more than 3 dollars? It's a fun experience, and if this is the developer's first game released, it's pretty great for what it is. But my main complaint with Dreaming Sarah is that it takes away the essence of exploration usually found in games like this by making it a platformer and not adding enough content. There's nothing to find, no quirky secrets or easter eggs that have a 1/64 chance of happening (there are secrets in the game, but all of them are so close to the path you have to follow that I'd put money on you finding at least 80% of them without trying), and no real "wow I can't believe how crazy this was!" moments that is usually what makes playing exploration based walking simulators like this interesting. It plays it very very safe, and while it's enjoyable to sit down and relax with, it's not worth 6 dollars to play a game through to 100% for an hour and never touch it again.

Take Journey for example. It's 15 dollars on PSN, but it's an hour long. But many people claim it to be a great game for the price. Why? Because there's so much to explore and discover, and even when you're done with that you can meet people and have new experiences every time. With Yume Nikki, the gimmick is that while playing you always feel like there's something new that's happening- something weird that just randomly decided to show up. This game feels like an on-rails shooter in comparison, and while the atmosphere is very good, there's just nothing bringing me back.

So all this being said, why am I recommending Dreaming Sarah? Well, on sale it's definitely worth it just for the experience, and I think the developer has a lot of potential in the future. The graphics are very eye pleasing (no pun intended) and the OST is pretty dang good (and you get it for free with purchase of the game) and if worst comes to worst you can sell the steam trading cards or keep them for a cool looking emoticon or background (most of them being well made, I'm wearing one on my profile at time of writing).

Overall: 6.8/10
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30 of 33 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
2.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 31, 2015
This kind of game is not for everyone.
Try to answer the questions below before purchasing.

Do you like being lost?
Do you like exploring without a clue?
Do you like YUME NIKKI?
Do you like not knowing what's happening until the very end?
Do you like tricky games?

If you answered ''Yes'' for most of the questions,
then this a game made for you
PS: Fans of Yume Nikki would love this game
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
26 of 27 people (96%) found this review helpful
Recommended
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 29, 2015
A surreal little side scrolling adventure platformer, with minimal platforming elements and lots of exploration through weird but well made and definitely dream-like 16bit imagery.

I'm slowly realizing that I'm bad at these exploration type games. There is a certain amount of patience required to get lost in its weird maps that go all over the place, in two directions or even looping onto themselves, and that require you to revisit them after finding certain items to see whether something new has unlocked. I'm apparently also not great at solving a couple of its slightly more abstract, lateral-thinking-required puzzles, so yes, a walkthrough was consulted. However, the game is good at creating a sense of controlled bewilderment that makes the exploration interesting, most of the puzzles do seem to resolve themselves after a bit of exploration or trial and error, and the different locations were distinct enough to keep fascinating even after getting lost in them for the n-th time. It helps that the game isn't particularly long (about 2-3 hours, depending on how lost you get), so frustration is kept at a minimum.

I will avoid spoiling any of the discoveries you can make within its fragmentary (and admittedly not super original or particularly deep) story, because it includes some really interesting/shocking moments that carry the minimal, up-for-interpretation narrative forward. But I can say that Dreaming Sarah never got boring, because wandering through these dream sequences manages to stay refreshing throughout, with a new little surprise around every corner. The beautiful soundtrack also elevated the experience, and if you like this type of ambient, dreamy music, you will enjoy it.

If you are even mildly curious about this game, and if you have the patience to get lost within its interesting surreal world, then Dreaming Sarah is definitely a game I would recommend. Despite not being the main target audience, I enjoyed myself. If you're still unsure about it, the Brazilian Indie Developer Asteristic is offering a downloadable demo at their website here.
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40 of 51 people (78%) found this review helpful
Recommended
2.0 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: June 17, 2014
EARLY ACCESS REVEIW SO WILL REVEIW THE GAME AGAIN AS AND WHEN IT GETS ITS FULL RELEASE

Ok i have only played this game for a brief period of time but in that short play time i have grown to like Sarah and care about her and her predicament.
You wake up and then your basically on your own as you choose which way to go and what to do next (the game is linear but doesnt play out this way and sort of deceives you into thinking you have a choice of what to do next).
The graphics suit this game and i love the pixelated style the developers have gone with,the sound is game is good and top marks to the whoever decided to go with the style they have gone with and now the story (wont spoil anything) is very mysterious and one that will give more away the more you play and is one i will love to get to the end of just to find out whats actually going on ??
Now this doesnt mean the story makes no sense (as it does) but it is one that is very intriguing and one that will only get better the nearer the devolpers get to release.
There are items to collect in game and these range from things like an umbrella (that helps you glide over gaps you would just never be able to jump without its help) to a magnifying glass (that shrinks you so you can access that hard to reach area that only someone the size of a mouse would get to),there are other items to collect and these you can discover for yourself as to much knowledge about a game this mysterious can only be a bad thing.
I reccommend this game whole heartedly and if your after a mysterious game that is well made and can only get better with time then look no further than "DREAMING SARAH"
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35 of 44 people (80%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
1.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 1, 2015
Note: video review embedded below.

Dreams are a rare occurance for me. Going to sleep usually causes me to fall into complete emptiness, or hover just between alert and unconscious as I struggle not to wake myself up. When I do dream though, it’s because something is wrong. When I’m feeling scared, or guilty, or anxious, these feelings manifest themselves in vividly internalized strangeness that often cause me to wake suddenly in a sweat, and then just as quickly slip away as I attempt to recall what happened.

Dreams are not fun excursions into my imagination the way they seem to be for many, but torturous self examinations without the constraints of logic and reality. I become my own worst enemy, helpless to suppress the ideas twisting themselves into things I can’t begin to describe even to myself as I wait and hope it will soon be over. My dreams have been this way for as long as I can remember, at some points during my childhood becoming so bad my religious family began to think I was possessed and mentally unstable.

It has been a long time since I’ve had anything quite so graphic as when I was a child, but that didn’t stop me revisiting these moments I had thought I’d forgotten as I journeyed through Dreaming Sarah and its protagonist’s equally bizarre and terrifying visions. Dreams are common fodder for media, but Dreaming Sarah is one of the first I’ve experienced that so perfectly illustrates the merging of reality and the surreal, and the petrifying helplessness within it that has been haunting me all these years. It exists at the point just between a dream and consciousness, where you can’t be sure of what is real and what isn’t; where your experiences and trauma come to life in ways you can’t control or understand, but are forced to make sense of or else allow them to swallow you whole.

Dreaming Sarah is excels at taking something conventional and warping it just enough to feel unusual yet still recognizable. Its artwork and soundtrack becomes continually more twisted as you travel deeper into Sarah’s subconscious, but always with a tinge of the familiar that only serves to put you more on edge. Gathering and using items feels traditional and expected, yet for what actual purpose I was collecting them I couldn’t say. Everything is so very ordinary but also alien, like you’ve been here before only now it’s changed and you aren’t sure how. Something is so clearly wrong, but you’re the only one that seems to notice.

I wouldn’t describe Dreaming Sarah as terrifying so much as it is haunting and unsettling. There is never any real danger and I knew this the whole time, but as is always the case in dreams what I knew became irrelevant. This was a world of my character’s own creation but which plays by its own rules, leaving me in a state of disarray as I attempt to rationalize the impossible. I wanted to get out, but the only way to do so was to find a way to understand this dream and trace it back to where it came from.

Looking at the dreams of someone else, whether they be but the creation of an artist or drawn from actual experiences, I was able to more easily see how they reflected some portion of reality. As I was helping to piece together Sarah’s psyche, it felt as if I was also in some way beginning to reconcile some of the inexplicable terrors I had conjured up over the years. It was clear that Sarah wasn’t insane, but that she had suffered and was hurting, and these dreams were the only way left for her to compartmentalize and begin to move past her trouble. Perhaps then my nightmares can similarly teach me something about myself, and help heal the subconscious wounds still eating away at me at night.

It seems likely to me that there will be people who don’t “get” Dreaming Sarah, who perhaps enjoy it on a mechanical and artistic level, but who see any deeper meaning as being fabricated or pretentious. Perhaps that is true to a point, but it also seems to say something about how we often view dreams as only that, rather than an extension of our real life experiences and potentially even a coping mechanism. I want to believe the horrors I’m inflicting upon myself are there for a reason, and that there is an ending in which I’m no longer tearing myself apart from deepest corners of my mind. At the very least, it would seem I’m not the only one.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q4QoleIN5ZE
You can read more of my writing on Kritiqal.
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14 of 14 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
3.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 30
A very atmospheric metroidvania-lite / exploration game.
It's basically Yume Nikki in 2D, that's reason enough to love it.

EDIT: I'm an idiot. By Yume Nikki in 2D i mean sidescrolling as opposed to RPGMakeresque top-down view. Yume Nikki 3D is a thing though. I think. Or maybe i dreamed that.
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19 of 24 people (79%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
4.8 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: November 26, 2014
So I'm slightly annoyed... I avoid early access games like the plague (I've done my time, I don't want to beta test your software unless you're paying me to do so these days), but I picked this one up in a bundle which didn't even vaguely mention that it was early access/unfinished and ran to install/play it based on the info on the bundle page rather than checking the steam page as well... *sigh*

Having said that, it is a lovely game, it's just that after wandering in circles for ages I eventually hit the forums only to discover that the item I was searching for wasn't in the game yet and at that point it became apparent why so many of the NPCs had seemed rather unfinished...

From what I've seen I would say this will totally be worth getting once it is actually released.
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13 of 16 people (81%) found this review helpful
Recommended
5.4 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: December 17, 2014
Interesting Platformer, i love pixel games. It's like a scavenger hunt. I do wish there was a story, I like the whole idea of dreaming and different worlds. But a story wouldn't of been bad either. I havent found any real cons. When i was in the clock world it sorta glitched when i went too far on the left side. but nothing horrible came of it. 10/10,
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