No bond is stronger than that of a boy and his dog.
Balthazar's Dream is a touching tale in development by Psilocybe Games. Nostalgia is the name if the game in Balthazar's Dream. It's puzzle platforming at its best. Picture old school Mario, if Mario was a dog out to save his owner instead of a princess. There has been a real resurgence of old school platformers. The people are asking for a return to the early years of gaming and more and more developers are delivering. Art style and layout just ooze nostalgia. You'll run, jump, hang, swing, and fetch your way through various levels in an attempt to awaken your beloved owner from a coma.
Balthazar's Dream begins with Dustin receiving Balthazar, a puppy, for his 8th birthday. Over the years they become as close as friends could be. But the happy days just couldn't last. One day, while enjoying some fetch in the park, Dustin is hit by a van and sent to the hospital. Being the loyalest of companions, Balthazar does not leave Dustin's side. While sleeping at the foot of Dustin's bed, Balthazar begins to dream. In his dream, Balthazar encounters a floating Dustin who seems to know that something isn't right. Dustin leads Balthazar through levels and events from their past in hopes that piecing together these events could lead Dustin back to the waking world.
Gameplay consists of old school puzzle platforming. All the past favorites are back; moving platforms, dropping platforms, bouncing platforms, swinging ropes, anything your pixel loving heart desires. But don't think out friends at Psilocybe stop with the familiar. They take full advantage of the fact that you play as a dog. Need an extra boost across a big gap? Here comes the vacuum and we all know dogs are afraid of the vacuum. Let your fear catapult you for an extra long jump. Balthazar loves to play fetch. Find a way to get a ball across a long gap and your love for fetch will carry you all the way across. The landscape won't be your only foe. You'll also encounter vicious cats ready to turn the tables on dogs chasing cats. At the end of each level, you'll encounter a boss derived from events of the past. Like a twisted version of the neighbor's fat cat. Each boss battle will put your platforming skills to the test.
Balthazar's Dream will be available on Steam in April. Can't wait that long to dive into the Dream? A demo level is available here. If you're interested in Balthazar's Dream, check out Psilocybe's other game Pigsodus. Pigsodus is the ultimate point-and-click pig-venture. Check out both games here. Play them both to get your fill of that pixel goodness.