The Dream Machine is an award-winning adventure game about dreams and voyeurism. It's built by hand using materials such as clay, cardboard and broccoli.
User reviews:
Very Positive (506 reviews) - 93% of the 506 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: May 11, 2012

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Buy The Dream Machine (Chapter 1 and 2)

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Buy The Dream Machine Bundle

This Dream Machine Bundle will give you access to Chapters 1-6 as they are released.


Recent updates View all (44)

October 3

October Update


This update came a little bit later than usual, as some of you have noted. The reason is that I spent the weekend in the lovely Swiss town of La Chaux-de-Fonds, giving a talk, befriending the native population and drinking Absinth. Swiss Absinth is a bit different from French, but they both get the job done for sure. I've also tried Czech Absinth but the less said about that the better...

All-in-all, I give Switzerland 10 out of 10.

As for the update, we're still in full production mode on Chapter 6 (no date yet), so it's mostly just small tweaks here and there. I hope you'll like them none the less.

Check out the full update details below:

• Engine: Fixed task manager bug
• Game: Tweaked sound levels
• Chapter 1: Fixed rock issue
• Chapter 1: Increased size of item button
• Chapter 5: Increased size of navigation button
• Chapter 2, 4 & 5: Added names to Mr Morton's dream map
• Chapter 5: Fixed typo

As always: shout out in the comments below if you encounter anything strange/buggy in the game. Thanks to everyone who's taken the time to report an issue!


- a

11 comments Read more

September 1

September Update


Aside from Chapter 6, I've been working quite a lot on sound recently. I recently acquired a sweet pair of headphones and discovered that the sound needed some TLC. So expect a lot of sound tweaking in the coming updates. Everybody loves sound tweaks!

On the Chapter 6 front, progress has been solid and we've just finished building a very difficult portion of the game. Over the next week Erik will start building the last two sections of the game and I'll be trying to keep up implementing everything.

Short version: Still quite a lot to do. Not yet ready to set a date.

Check out the full update details below:

• Game: Fixed issues introduced with walking speed increase
• Game: Tweaked intro title graphic
• Game: Changed roll over sound on menus
• Game: Tweaked sound levels
• Chapter 1: Tweaked interactions
• Chapter 1: Tweaked inventory item graphics
• Chapter 2, 4 & 5: Tweaked bluerprint graphics
• Chapter 2, 4 & 5: Lowered volume on Morton's jazz track
• Chapter 5: Fixed spawn issue in Willard's dream
• Chapter 5: Changed the footstep sound in Willard's dream

As always: shout out in the comments below if you encounter anything strange/buggy in the game. Thanks to everyone who's taken the time to report an issue!


- a

15 comments Read more


"To play something like The Dream Machine, so exquisitely constructed, so smartly designed, and so atmospherically unique, is a singular pleasure." - Rock, Paper, Shotgun

"It's so confidently strung together, both in terms of narrative and gameplay, that it's easy to forget that it's the work of just two indie developers."
8/10 - Eurogamer

"A series filled with mystery and charm, elevated to lofty heights by its whimsical clay and cardboard design, surreal storyline, and heartfelt attention to detail."
4/5 - Adventure Gamers

"The Dream Machine is the best adventure game that I've played in the last decade – and maybe in my entire life."
9.5/10 - CD-Action

About This Game

The Dream Machine is an award-winning adventure game about dreams and voyeurism. It's built by hand using materials such as clay, cardboard and broccoli. Five out of six chapters have been released so far.

In Chapter 1 you play as Victor Neff, the husband in a young couple who've just moved into a new apartment. While trying to get settled in you discover that all is not as it seems in the quiet, unassuming apartment building...

In Chapter 2, Victor goes to confront the landlord, Mr. Morton, only to find his apartment empty. Can Victor find the elusive landlord in time and is there more to Mr. Morton than meets the eye?

Key Features

  • World: Explore a creepy apartment complex and uncover the mysteries within. Get to know your neighbors and discover their secrets.
  • Story: Delve into the minds of strangers and loved ones as you’re trying to save them from The Dream Machine.
  • Graphics: Wander around beautifully detailed environments built using physical clay models and hand-crafted sets.
  • Puzzles: In order to progress you have to solve puzzles ranging from simple pushovers to fiendish brainteasers.
  • Music: A haunting original soundtrack weaves through the narrative, emphasizing the surreal atmosphere of the game.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
    OS: Windows XP or later
    Processor: 1.8 GHz processor
    Memory: 1 GB RAM
    Hard Drive: 800 MB HD space
    Additional Notes: Mouse recommended
    OS: OSX Leopard 10.5.8, Snow Leopard 10.6.3, or later
    Processor: Intel Mac 1.8 GHz processor
    Memory: 1 GB RAM
    Hard Drive: 800 MB HD space
    Additional Notes: Mouse recommended
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated Sept. 2016! Learn more
Very Positive (506 reviews)
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413 reviews match the filters above ( Very Positive)
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
5.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 14
The game utilizes it's unique art style of clay and cardboard, blended together with a rich story, simple controls, and challenging puzzles to create a great, but slightly short game as far as chapters 1-3 go. If you enjoy point and click adventure games and got 15 bucks to spend, then I would say it's well worth it.
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10 of 32 people (31%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
21.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 28
Over 4 years later and the game is still not finished.
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
213 of 270 people (79%) found this review helpful
127 people found this review funny
20.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 25, 2014
public class TheDreamMachineReviewGenerator {
public Review generate() {
Review r = new Review();
r.addComment(Source.WIFE, "wtf are you playing");
r.addComment(Source.WIFE, "this game freaks me out");
r.addComment(Source.WIFE, "can you just play that with zombies");
r.setOverallRating("Underrated, highly recommended");
return r;
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56 of 62 people (90%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
6.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 2, 2015
Another drop in the vast ocean of point-and-click adventure games, The Dream Machine stands like a beacon signaling a reinvention of the worn genre. With landscapes and characters created entirely out of clay and cardboard, Erik Zaring and Andes Gustafsson helm this unexpected foray into our subconscious.
The Dream Machine tells the story of Victor Neff, a man who has just moved into a brand new apartment with his pregnant girlfriend Alicia. However, after their first night here, they begin to realize there's something incredibly "off" about this place. They both have strange dreams, the landlord is kind of creepy, and the previous tenant has left a mysterious note of warning. Though the dreams could just be a result of the stress of moving day and the note could have easily been a prank, things just keep getting weirder, prompting Victor to investigate.
The very first thing players will notice about the Dream Machine is its unique art style. In fact, the game was nominated for an award in "Excellence in Visual Arts" at the 14th Annual Independent Games Festival. That's because Cockroach Inc. has taken a different approach to game design: they decided to make all the set pieces and characters out of cardboard and clay. No polygons invited. This coats the whole affair in a layer of imperfection; it's flawed and raw, but in a way that gives it a deeper level of humanity. In fact, the guys at Cockroach have even admitted to intentionally leaving fingerprints on some of the objects in the game to accomplish this very thing.
The story is an admittedly adult tale of new beginnings, represented by both the move to a new apartment and the new life Victor's girlfriend carries in her womb. The Dream Machine's plot draws on basic human fears, but not in a Silent Hill sort of way. Instead, the game plays on real-life day-to-day fears that most people will encounter at some point in their time on this planet. Moving to a new place can be scary. Having a child on the way can be scary. And finding out that your landlord has a video camera in your bedroom is extremely scary.
There is a little bit of music in the game, and it's appropriately dark. Some of it is plain ominous, and other bits of it seem to accentuate certain aspects of the story. Mr. Morton's discordant jazz music fits his personality quite well, for example. Sound effects are minimal, but that sort of goes with the point-and-click territory.
The gameplay here is simple; The Dream Machine adheres to the age-old point-and-click adventure game formula, leading players through a series of puzzles before showing them each piece of the story. Thankfully, puzzles in the Dream Machine are incredibly clever. Too many point-and-click games are full of incomprehensible puzzles with completely nonsensical answers. The Dream Machine, however, has some incredibly well-thought-out solutions that will ultimately make sense. That's not to say they're easy; quite the contrary. Some of these solutions won't present themselves until you've spent a good deal of time just pondering over the things you've seen so far. But when you finally do stumble upon a solution, it's immensely satisfying.
If you have any interest at all in point-and-click games, or need a powerful defense in the "games as art" debate, you should definitely check out The Dream Machine.
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56 of 65 people (86%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
20.8 hrs on record
Posted: February 13, 2015
The Dream Machine is a twisted, dreamlike, sometimes disturbingly nightmarish point-and-click game done in clay animation style.
Gameplay 7.5 out of 10
The puzzles are mostly point and click some are quite easy to solve and some are a bit tricky and even a bit absurd.
Graphics 9/10
Pure honest hard work done by the hands of “sexy Swedish guys”.9 Points for the unique, morbid style. I really really like the clay graphic style. Two Thumbs up for the game devs for putting such a heck load of work into this game.
Music 8/10
Dreamlike, ominous sounds, which nicely add to the atmosphere
Story 9/10
The story is intriguing and sometimes even a bit disturbing and grim. To make it short, without spoiling anything, you travel through the dreams of various people with the help of the Dream Machine.
I'd say definitely a must buy for all point-and-click gamers and casual gamers. Although a bit grim and disturbing sometimes
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40 of 43 people (93%) found this review helpful
13.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 4, 2014
This game is ridiculously good - so much so that I'm actually writing a review. Please PLEASE do yourself a favor and buy it - even full price! It's more than worth it.

I won't go in detail into game mechanics and whatnot (other reviews do the mechanics justice) but suffice it to say the claymation is well-done, the puzzles are interesting and often challenging, and the plot is very engaging. It's a great story! And while it's not a "scary" game, it is a deliciously disturbing one (I mean, it's based on dreams, of course it's gonna be disturbing, especially in the later chapters. I guess I'd say it's a similar feeling as watching one of Tim Burton's films, but with more blood, and a slightly more mature rating.) The only downside to this game is having to wait for the 6th chapter to come out. Rambling aside, 2 thumbs way waaaay up.
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42 of 47 people (89%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
14.2 hrs on record
Posted: March 24, 2015
I'd never heard of this game when I got it in a bundle. I now think it's the most underrated game in my library, and perhaps the most underrated point-and-click I know of. The story is incredible. It's very imaginative and becomes darker and more intriguing the deeper you go. It reminded me of the early films of Jeunet and Caro (Delicatessen, City of Lost Children) which is no small accolade. The puzzles are decent and never illogical; the few times I cheated I kicked myself when I read the solution. I would recommend The Dream Machine over many other, more renowned point-and-click games. Very glad I stumbled upon this one.
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25 of 31 people (81%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
9.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 20, 2015
I'm not usually someone who gets into point-and-clicks - I usually get stuck or bored talking to people and I'm too guilty to use walkthroughs but I made it through the first 3 chapters with only one less-than-ovious head-scratching moment.

It's weird to look at, weird to play and so probably not for everyone but I love it - it's has a great balance of creepy and mysterious and it's quite original in places too.

Puzzles are tricky sometimes but there are no red herrings (tho I've no idea about the bench in Chapter 3!) and everything you need is reasonably easy to find if you look in the right places. There are oo tiny changes in the cursor or 2-pixel-wide items - movement is quick - no convoluted dialogues to dig through - you mostly just play the game instead of walking, talking and so on.

Update: since writing that I've tried Chapter 4 and - unfortunately - I keep running into a crash bug which leaves me unable to continue. This isn't ideal but hopefully the developer will address it/I'll figure out a different way around the problem - and the puzzles do seem a LOT harder in this episode too! :(
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22 of 26 people (85%) found this review helpful
22.4 hrs on record
Posted: December 10, 2013
Great adventure game! Puzzles can be frustrating but are really well thought through and that just makes them more satisfying to complete! Really unique and good looking art style, and an immersive attention to detail that puts you in the story
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18 of 21 people (86%) found this review helpful
6.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 16, 2014
I really don't write reviews very often. However, I felt that this one really deserved one.

The Short:
This is an incredibly well-designed game. The developer's were able to capture that very rare "spark." While it may be a little short (I really took my time and it took me an hour per chapter), it is one of immense quality. Overall 9.5/10.

The Longer:
- Gameplay:
It is your standard point-and-click adventure game. You are given a small story or situation and you have to solve puzzles to progress. My only real complaint, which isn't much of a complaint, is the sudden advancement in difficulty. In the first two chapters, I didn't really come across any problems/difficulties. The third chapter was really hard! You'll understand when you have to make a certain drink.

- Music:
I loved the soundtrack. It matches the situations and environment very, very well. It ranges from the caretaker's creepy jazz song to minimalistic ambience to Silent Hill-esque rhythms.

- Story:
This is easily one of my favorite stories that has come from recent gaming. Without giving too much away, it begins as a simple tale about a couple moving into a new apartment. Soon, it evolves into an (without exaggeration) epic adventure involving the dream world, a science project gone wrong, and horror.

- Graphics/Environment:
The clay animation was a really smart artistic choice. It helps to add a fresh perspective on the genre. The environments are all interesting and enchanting. The characters are... scary looking.

To the developers, I sincerely enjoyed your game.
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Recently Posted
8.4 hrs
Posted: October 24
Best point & click game ever.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
15.2 hrs
Posted: October 15
Very cute adventure game, with a good story, nice soundtrack and graphics.
Gameplay is simple. Puzzles at times a bit challenging, I already got stuck in chapter II :)
I like that the game is made of clay figurines and cute little clay furniture.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
17.6 hrs
Posted: October 10
Was pretty sceptical at first but loved it SO much ! The aesthetics is singular but really charming, the story is trully powerfull with a lot of suspence that keeps you going, with each ambiances pretty different yet all feeling kinda disturbing and magical.
And puzzles, the core of any point & click... i don't know what to say outside the fact that they are perfect, extremely smart and intuitive with just the right difficulty so it's not too hard yet really rewarding when you find out. 10/10, probably one of the best point&click of all time, maybe even THE best one ever ! Can't wait for chapter 6 !
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12.5 hrs
Posted: October 9
Fantastic story, fun and challenging. Great game get it!
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63.3 hrs
Posted: September 25
STEAM COMMUNITY IS AN ABSOLUTE MENTAL CASE!!! Cockroach Inc. accidentally develops the best game ever, and the community haven't even realized! Somebody stop them before they miss out on that once-in-a-lifetime experience!!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
48.6 hrs
Posted: September 22
Hmm...I could reiterate most of what the reviews say but the machine wouldn't like that. It's creepy, inventive, challenging and some how dream like, or is it really a nightmare? Play it and find out for yourself!
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2.4 hrs
Posted: September 19
is v nice
Helpful? Yes No Funny
16.1 hrs
Posted: September 7
Amazing game! The atmosphere is unique and the puzzles are hard enough but not impossible, instantly making this one of my favorite games ever.

Can't wait for Chapter 6!!!
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