It’s very easy to spend tons of time staring off into the distance and wondering how things could be different or how things used to be. This is taken quite literally in Daydream: Forgotten Sorrow by Frozen Line. It’s a 3D puzzle platform game that takes you on a journey through the imagination of someone trying to escape an all-consuming force of darkness. There’s also physics at play when it comes to manipulating the various objects and obstacles. This works alongside a sense that there’s always something lurking off-screen and you need to be ready to run at any given moment.
Daydream of What?
Imagination is something that can’t be measured except by your own limitations and creativity. In Daydream: Forgotten Sorrow, there’s quite a wide range of thoughts to experience as you explore. You play as a young boy named Griffin who is trapped in a powerful daydream brought on by disruption in his life. He’s not alone in this world as he’s accompanied by a small teddy bear named Birly who’s capable of helping him in several ways. The pair are being pursued by a dark entity able to take on multiple forms, and it’s up to you to guide Griffin and Birly to safety in hopes of reaching the light beyond the darkness.
The Brightness of Forgotten Sorrow
Games that take place within the mind can be anything from extremely positive to very painful — or trying to strike a balance between the two. Daydream: Forgotten Sorrow manages to walk this line in a number of ways. The first is the visual style, which is somewhat reminiscent of the Little Nightmares series. Though our heroes and many of the environments are rounded and colorful, this is contrasted by all the threats being sharp and angular. There’s a distinct disruption that can be seen, heard, and felt whenever something dangerous is onscreen.
This feeds into the idea that the best defense you have in this world of the mind is the mind itself. Depending on which part of the daydream you’re in, you can have access to a variety of mechanics involving Griffin and Birly’s limitations. You get an instant sense of just how fragile either of them is, which not only makes you want to look after them, but also makes you more determined to watch them succeed.
You have the classic gameplay presented by this kind of structure with Griffin being able to push, pull, and grab various objects to his heart’s content. There’s also the one-player co-op element of being able to throw Birly around and have him get things out of reach or work in tandem with Griffin. Both objects and characters have weight to them, which adds some realism to the imagined world.
Lastly, you’ve got a sense of mystery in that it’s not always easy to expect the unexpected. Environments ebb and flow smoothly no matter how drastically different they may seem. All the areas have their own energy, with the light and dark areas having synergy between them so that you know these same elements are following you around. This maintains the idea that this is all just one daydream from one person.
The Sorrow of Daydream
Despite how it sounds, daydreams are not always joyful experiences, and can quickly take you into dark places. Daydream: Forgotten Sorrow has some intentionally dark moments, but also has others that work against the experience. The most prominent is the clipping issue. Characters and objects are constantly moving into each other, which could be effective for a daydream setting if it was made to be that way. Unfortunately, considering that you need to control Griffin and Birly into objects and set pieces frequently, the clipping becomes almost impossible to ignore.
Then there are some issues with the hitboxes and other technical issues. There are times when a trap will spring without being near it, and it will still kill the hero. Some objects won’t respond to his grabs unless he’s in just the right spot, which can be frustrating whenever there’s a time constraint. Additionally, there are problems that can occur in the communication between Griffin and Birly. Points of interest to send Birly are clearly marked, but if Birly ends up in an unfortunate location, he won’t respond, and there’s no way to reset unless you return to the previous checkpoint.
Remembering Daydream: Forgotten Sorrow
Daydream: Forgotten Sorrow is a 3D puzzle platform game about helping a boy and his bear escape the nightmares of his mind. The visual style suits and presents the themes effectively with a nice use of physics and character fragility. The clipping, hitboxes, and Birly’s chances to ignore you can cause bumps in your enjoyment. Still, if you’re mind’s blank, this daydream could fill it up fast.
Daydream: Forgotten Sorrow was played on Steam with a code provided by the developers. It’s available for Switch, PlayStation, and Xbox.