Take a step into Sarah’s dream. Her dream involves floating with a parasol, transforming into a fish, and a lot of weirdness. Take a step into Dreaming Sarah.
Dreaming Sarah is a platform puzzle game that takes place in a young girl named Sarah’s dream. After you wake up on a grassy platform, you’re given no direction and simply need to start exploring. The maps in Dreaming Sarah do loop around on themselves, so you don’t need to worry too much about going the wrong way. While you’re exploring, you’ll explore a mine shaft with lava, a club, the space inside of a TV, and a desert just to name a few places. What awaits you within these areas will serve to guide you to The End.
The story moments within Dreaming Sarah are generally pretty sparse. For most of the game, you’ll be wandering around while gently being nudged in the next direction of where you need to go. The puzzles are all extremely straightforward once you do find them, though there are a couple puzzles where it’s possible to find them before you have the proper items to solve them.
The game has 16 items that you can to find throughout all the various areas. 8 of these items are usable, and you can toggle most of these on or off with the item wheel. The fews items that you can’t toggle as such do still have their usefulness, such as the compass which you can use to see if there is anything hidden with the room you’re in room.
Along with the 16 items you can find there are also 5 hidden secrets. While a couple of secrets you can find right along the way, others will take a bit of thinking and backtracking. These are a neat little addition to the game, even if the only purposes they serve are to give a couple items a use and for achievements.
Dreaming Sarah controls fairly well, at least on controller. Item switching can get a bit awkward at times as I never really found a good way to leave the menu without triggering something (often turning the parasol off). Speaking of turning the parasol off, you do need to be careful when transforming into a fish as it deactivates all active buffs except for the watch. I definitely fell to my death a couple times when I realized my parasol wasn’t on after having changed back from being a fish. Other than that, the general platforming feels well done and very responsive.
The music in game is nothing extremely noteworthy but it does generally fit the mood of each area. While I did have to turn it down due to being on headphones, I didn’t actually mute it which is more than I can say for some other games I’ve played. The sound effects also fit quite well, though the most common one you’ll hear is the parasol opening and closing.
Dreaming Sarah is a short, 2-hour platformer that will keep you interested through to the end. Some of the backtracking can get fairly annoying, particularly near the end when it’s not nearly as clear as to where you need to go to proceed. Item switching can be a bit awkward at times, but the controls are otherwise fairly smooth. While it may not be worth the full asking price of $6 for the length, if you can find it in either a bundle or on sale then it’s definitely worth picking up.
Dreaming Sarah Review Score
Dreaming Sarah is available now on Steam.