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Balthazar’s Dream is an unusual puzzle-platformer game from new developer Psilocybe Games; only a demo of the game is currently available, as the team are still hard at work developing the game. A Kickstarter for the game is still ongoing and the game has reached over half of the target goal already, the Steam Greenlight campaign also looks very positive right now.
After a terrible accident leaves Dustin in hospital, Balthazar the dog stays by his side waiting for him to wake up from the coma; the game follows loyal Balthazar as he dreams of a strange world where his best friend is in trouble. A mysterious dark entity seems to live in this world and wants to take Dustin away so the faithful dog must fight to save Dustin and bring him home.
It follows the classic and traditional gameplay elements seen in the puzzle-platform genre where the player must reach the end of each level by traversing the environment. Most of the demo is focused towards the platforming where the player needs to reach the checkpoints which are spread across the levels; plenty of classic platforming mechanics are included in the game such as climbing ropes and moving platforms.
There are a range of interesting enemies which need to be avoided; some enemies are lethal and will kill Balthazar if he touches them but others use a unique system that causes him to run away in terror if the Smarts Bar reaches zero. It may sound like a bad thing but this can be used in the players favor, the sudden burst of speed allows him to jump further and sprint quickly to cross larger distances.
Defeating moving enemies is possible but the player needs to use a certain item to do so; jumping on their head doesn’t kill them, instead it just makes them more dangerous. Boss battles in the game are entertaining and each boss will require different strategies to defeat them.
Balthazar’s Dream is a nice addition to the puzzle-platform genre and while this is only a demo, the game looks very promising and fans of this genre should feel at home with this game; it follows the classic gameplay while introducing new elements which make it stand out from other games currently available.