Little monsters really seem to have a sweet tooth. God only knows how many sugary snacks we’ve fed to Cut the Rope‘s Om Nom over the past two years. Now comes Poncho, a creature that looks like a blue eraser in a suit, who daydreams about worlds filled with candy while he’s sleeping on the job at the Broccoli Company. Mr. Dreamer, from Strapped to a Meteor Games, is a high energy sugar-rush.
You guide Poncho as he runs through eight colorful, hand-painted worlds filled to the brim with candy. Like a 2 year-old child, candy is what fuels Poncho. You have to be mindful of his energy levels, so collecting as much candy as you can is paramount. You also have to be careful that you’re not running upside down. See, the levels spin and flip around, and running upside down will drain Poncho’s energy super fast, and your energy already drains at an alarming rate.
Dream big, little monster.
You avoid a gravity-defying situation by tapping on the screen to flip Poncho around from one side of the path to the other. It sounds deceptively simple, but later levels get really twisty and turny and throw obstacles in your path like bombs and broccoli monsters who want to stop you from getting to your snacks. It’s a really interesting and different way to approach the typical running game, and you’ll have a lot of fun flipping Poncho around the confectionary creations he has to make his way through. You’ll have a really great time… when it works.
Mr. Dreamer’s one and only game mechanic unfortunately doesn’t work as well as it should. We’ve died from the game simply not registering our tapping on the screen. It can get really annoying when you know what you’re supposed to be doing, but the game denies you. Not only that, but as you run from one world to the next, your energy levels don’t reset. So if you’ve just barely squeaked by one level, you’re instantly put at an disadvantage for the next one. We’ve had more than one game where we simply died the instant the next level started because we couldn’t get to any candy quick enough. And since there’s no level select or checkpoint system or anything like that, when you die you have to start the game over from the beginning. There’s also some noticeable frame-rate issues, with the game stuttering and stopping, sometimes at the most inopportune times.
Mr.Dreamer has its share of problems, but in spite of them we still had a great time playing it. The game is so different, so creative and so easy to pick up and play, that once you get a handle on the mechanics, you’ll keep wanting to come back and stuff Poncho’s face full of treats.