Dreamfall Chapters Book One: Reborn Image
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72

Mixed or average reviews - based on 29 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 56 Ratings

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  • Summary: The world of Arcadia exists in parallel and in balance with own own. It is a world of magic and chaos, a counterweight to Stark, the world of science and order. The Balance between the twin worlds is watched over by the Guardian, who channels the energies of Chaos and Order between ArcadiaThe world of Arcadia exists in parallel and in balance with own own. It is a world of magic and chaos, a counterweight to Stark, the world of science and order. The Balance between the twin worlds is watched over by the Guardian, who channels the energies of Chaos and Order between Arcadia and Stark. Expand

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Dreamfall Chapters - The Story So Far Trailer
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. Mar 22, 2015
    90
    Dreamfall Chapters is a strong adventure game, held back only by the required knowledge base for entry. A fascinating game with interwoven tales, beautiful set pieces and believeable protagonists, Dreamfall is going strong and only getting started.
  2. Pelit (Finland)
    Mar 22, 2015
    84
    Reborn is a promising start for the new entry in the Dreamfall saga. The story is as ambitious as it has always been in the series and Europolis is a gorgeous location to explore. Hopefully he remaining episodes will continue (and end!) the story in a satisfying way. [Dec 2014]
  3. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Mar 22, 2015
    80
    I don’t like dividing the games into the episodes. But if there is no other way to get it funded let's take it as a necessary evil. The first part is a promise of the unique experience with well-written heroes. [Issue#247]
  4. 70
    The beautiful design of the game and the interesting way that it handles characterisation and narrative has me looking forward to seeing Book Two with baited breath.
  5. Mar 22, 2015
    70
    Book One is a tiny taste of what's coming. It's delectably delicious and I'd love to rate it higher, but at this point, it's hard to say whether Dreamfall Chapters will be filling and satisfying - or if it'll leave us feeling a little empty.
  6. CD-Action
    Mar 22, 2015
    70
    Red Thread Games obviously looks up to Telltale, but the first episode of Dreamfall Chapters lacks pace and excitement associated with The Walking Dead. [13/2014, p.78]
  7. Game World Navigator Magazine
    Mar 22, 2015
    60
    Of course, as with any episodic game, it is difficult to predict where do plot twists lead or how will we perceive this adventure once we’ve seen it in its entirety. But right now it’s very difficult to believe that this is Dreamfall we’ve been looking forward to for the last eight years. [Dec 2014, p.72]

See all 29 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 7
  2. Negative: 2 out of 7
  1. Jun 12, 2015
    10
    It's a great beginning to an epic story - but the story really begins in book 2. Luckily you will get the whole game when you purchaseIt's a great beginning to an epic story - but the story really begins in book 2. Luckily you will get the whole game when you purchase Chapters! The story is gripping, the graphics stunning, the voice acting stellar. Expand
  2. Jun 12, 2015
    10
    Great introduction to a very immersive and addicting adventure game. The art is beautiful and there are lots of details to find and reflect onGreat introduction to a very immersive and addicting adventure game. The art is beautiful and there are lots of details to find and reflect on to understand this world. It's trip to a different place but with many aspects shedding a light to our reality.
    It's also a great story, and the first 2 games in the series (The Longest Journey and Dreamfall) can be watched on youtube to start DFC up to date :)
    Only a few puzzles in book 1 but you have to attentive to progress in the game. More puzzles in book 2 (good ones as well, clever but not too hard)
    Books 3 to 5 not out yet at the time of this review, some time to ponder on what happened in the first 2 books :)
    Expand
  3. Jun 12, 2015
    9
    Dreamfall Chapters is a new episodic instalment on the TLJ series, and a direct sequel to Dreamfall: The Longest Journey.
    The game is
    Dreamfall Chapters is a new episodic instalment on the TLJ series, and a direct sequel to Dreamfall: The Longest Journey.
    The game is wonderfully written - great story, great characters, excellent dialogue and voice acting - and beautifully designed. Book 1 is the starting point, establishing characters and plot lines, and is a strong beginning for what is builiding up to be a very impressive game overall.
    Highly recommended.
    Expand
  4. Aug 2, 2016
    7
    (This is a review I wrote back in 2014 when the first book came out)

    In short: Good stuff - *Great complex story, the long awaited
    (This is a review I wrote back in 2014 when the first book came out)

    In short:

    Good stuff -
    *Great complex story, the long awaited continuation for Dreamfall TLJ
    *Cool soundtrack
    *Choices and consequences concept introduced into the game
    *Graphics are cool
    *Good writing and characters

    Bad stuff -
    *Not yet fully optimized for PCs and specifically for 32bit version of Windows (even after patch 1.1.2)
    *Performance and graphics don't justify system requirements
    *Game relies solely on story, not gameplay. Again.
    *Still too early to tell where the game is going and whether it's going to be good or disappointing

    I have good things to say about this game, but!

    Unfortunately, I'll have to start by saying that technically, this game is not too good. After waiting 7 years for a sequel, when you pre-order a product full price, then get release-delays, and then you have to struggle with the game and with your computer to run stuff properly.... Well, that's a bad start. Really bad start.
    Anyway, I had to buy more RAM and install a 64-bit OS on my system to run this game properly, and if I wasn't an advacned user, I would have been left feeling that I've thrown 30$ to the garbage.

    Though, considering the fact that RTG is a new and small company, that they have released pretty fast 3 patches for the game by now (which improved performance but didn't solve my problems anyway), and also considering that they're keeping in touch with the fans, supporting and trying to help as much as possible, keeping the fans updated through every advancement..

    Well, Red Thread Games earned my respect, despite this highly unoptimized product.

    Good. So, now, for the game itself.
    It's good. Pretty damn good even, but possibly because I'm already in love with the TLJ universe.
    The writing is good in my opinion, as expected, and it's the game's main strength.
    I really enjoyed the story and characters, both old and new ones.
    The soundtrack has taken a new and interesting direction, which fits the game's new style.
    Seems like the devs took some inspiration from Telltale's choices&consequences concept, which I like.
    And generally, I enjoyed playing book one and the very opening really got me into this 'new' story.

    Gameplay-wise, this game plays much like its predecessor. I thought that they'd polish Dreamfall's action sequences (so-called sneaking and combat) but instead they were completely thrown away and we're left with adventure-elements only and the new choices&consequnce idea. The puzzles are also rather easy (although they are more innovative than those on Dreamfall in my opinion).
    I really hoped the developers would listen to the fans about this one, and would make the gameplay more challanging, engaging and worthwhile. But it seems like they have stayed with their old paths and there again the game relies mostly on story.

    The graphics look beautiful and alive but are not stunning, and not they nor the game's performance justify the system requirements.

    Europolis is the largest area in book one, and looks interesting at first, but later it becomes an annoyance when you have to run long distances around without any reward or encouragement for exploring, as when you do that you'd mostly find people talking about politics and basically feel like a big part of the content is duplicated over Europolis.

    Despite my complaints, I did get really excited about Chapters and Book One, enjoyed it and am looking forward for the continuation.
    My only fear is that Chapters has 7 long years of waiting to fill, and doesn't go humble about its ambitions. If the developers won't polish the game some more, and won't improve it's weak points, they could easily turn it into a disappointment.
    Now is simply too soon to predict whether Chapters is going to be a fulfilling title or just leave us feeling empty.
    Expand
  5. Mar 22, 2015
    7
    I won’t elaborate upon the various ways in which the original The Longest Journey touched my life such that it wormed its way into aI won’t elaborate upon the various ways in which the original The Longest Journey touched my life such that it wormed its way into a permanent, rare part of my heart I reserve for very few games. Or how its followup, Dreamfall, left me hanging on the edge of a cliff with one of my favorite video game characters of all time (April Ryan) at the conclusion of its equally memorable tale.

    But sufficed to say, when I learned that this series was receiving the sequel treatment from a team including the original creators funded by Kickstarter, I leapt at the chance to support the survival of a story I didn’t want to see vanish into the ether of gaming history.

    Does the game live up to the legacy of the first two cult classics? Is it the triumphant return of the well written, endearing characters we know and love? Well... for the most part, I have to say yes. Yes it does, and yes it is. But, alas, it’s not an unequivocal affirmative.

    Like Dreamfall before it, DFC is a third person, story-driven adventure with puzzle elements, albeit sans the action segments this time around. (Thankfully. I never liked them personally.) As promised during development, it does strike an interesting balance between the adventure sensibility of Dreamfall, and the point and click feel of The Longest Journey.

    The visuals range from beautiful and dream-like, to confusingly lit. (Especially in Europolis. Talk about overdoing the lens flares. Wow.) But it all contributes to a wonderful feel that is immediately evocative of Stark in The Longest Journey. Characters are pleasingly detailed, shiny, and stylized.

    Sound design is effective, though there are some instances of a distant sound cutting off sooner than it seems like it should, rather than gently fading out with distance. The music, however, is goose bump inducingly fantastic. Moving and atmospheric in the extreme, I was perhaps most impressed with this aspect of the game’s production. Poole et al have done a riveting job of scoring this world and its story.

    Gameplay consists of using the aforementioned context sensitive icon interactions to solve puzzles, traverse environments, and advance the story. Longtime fans of the series will be pleased to know I found the writing and characterization to be extremely true to the tones and complexities of the previous entries. Zoë and Kian, if anything, feel even more human, vulnerable, and conflicted than in Dreamfall.

    The puzzles you must solve to advance through these areas and progress through the part of the story told in this book are deceptively simple once solved, but I got stuck more than once experimenting with multiple avenues before succeeding. This pads out the duration somewhat, and also feels a lot like The Longest Journey, which I definitely like.

    All of this combined to make me feel secure in the belief that the story, once complete, will be both true to the original games’ legacies, and engaging enough to take me to interesting territory psychologically and thematically.

    This brings me to the sole major criticism I have of Book One: its insubstantial content. There are a grand total of four truly distinct areas in the game, with only one of them being large and fully explorable. You spend very little time in all but one of said locales. My first playthrough took me 6 hours. Not horrible, considering that there are AAA games which last that long. No, the problem is not the price, or the value. The issue is how brief and empty that 6 hours felt, subjectively.

    I can honestly attest that the majority of those hours were spent walking, backtracking, and stumped by one or two particularly inscrutable puzzles. Were the beautiful façade that is the world of DFC as interactive as it is atmospheric, I might not have minded. As it stands though, beyond the key characters and hot spots, there's not much to see and do in Europolis. It's beautiful, big, and well... quite empty feeling.

    Worse still, very little of the story is advanced. Just when I was beginning to become truly intrigued and immersed... that was it. To Be Continued. The cut off point felt quite unnatural and poorly paced in my opinion as well. Less of a self contained beginning-middle-end cycle and more of a "beginning, middle, and... uh... that's it?"

    Despite these criticisms, in actuality I love the game. It is a return to a world and to characters that I have loved, and missed. It oozes mood, charm, and humor. Characters have inner worlds and are multifaceted, nuanced, fully developed people for the most part. Something I have bitterly missed since the first two games, and something far too rare even today in digital narratives. The music is spine tingling. The tone and general direction of the story feels in every way like it will fit into the larger mythos and texture of the saga, and it is in many ways like coming home.

    That's worth some shortcomings and growing pains if you're a TLJ/DF fan.

    Balance be with you.
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  6. Jun 19, 2015
    4
    Sadly, the developer is encouraging fans to post preferably positive reviews in order to boost up sales. I loved the prequels as much as I'mSadly, the developer is encouraging fans to post preferably positive reviews in order to boost up sales. I loved the prequels as much as I'm dissapointed with what this game has become. For the game itself, the development process, *the developer's attitude*, the change of publishing format from what was originally stated in the kickstarter, and I can go on, and on, and on. Expand
  7. Jun 13, 2015
    1
    Do not believe all the 10's this game was given. They are mostly from 'Kool-aid' drinking fans who are basing their rating on so desperatelyDo not believe all the 10's this game was given. They are mostly from 'Kool-aid' drinking fans who are basing their rating on so desperately wanting this game to be good but they are not living in reality. I'm wondering how much they were paid to give it 10's? I was leery of this game from the start due to my admitted grudge against Ragnar Tornquist for not making a sequel to Dreamfall in a timely manner, his constant egotism, his dropping enticing hints over the last 9 years, his making The Lost World before starting on Dreamfall Chapters, etc. etc. etc. When Chapters came out I refused to buy it - instead I watched a famous You Tube player play it first to see if it was any good (it's pretty bad when you can get just as much out a game by watching someone else play it). I was bored to death - it was way too political, socialistic, communistic and anti-American (they've turned Crow into a ridiculous, rootin-tootin' cowboy advertisement). The joy of TLJ was it's humor and humorous situations and characters - I did not laugh once watching this chapter being played. Dreamfall combined humor with a dark and suspenseful story and then left us hanging for 9 years. If the rest of Chapters is anything like the first one it's doomed to failure. Tornquist has not lived up to his fomer glory and has left it too late. He has also turned way too political which is off-putting in an International game. Extremely disappointed but expected. Expand