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PSU Interview: Dreamers

26 September 2006

Dreamers, a brand new next-gen title from independent studio Dreamgazers, has now been unveiled. PSU is proud to present our exclusive interview with George Georgeadis, president and creative director at Dreamgazers. This exciting interview includes new details on everything from storyline to gameplay elements.

Currently, Dreamers is being developed for the PS3, Xbox 360 and PC. Trust us when we say Dreamers is one to lose sleep over!

Screencaptures and art work at end of interview.

1. How long has DREAMGAZERS INTERACTIVE been around?

Dreamgazers Interactive was founded in 2004 and what started as a one man company quickly got the attention of some incredibly talented individuals from around the world that joined the long journey of bringing to life this exciting and ambitious new project.

2. About how many staffers work at Dreamgazers?

Currently we have about 20 people involved, 6 core people plus our regular contributors and volunteers. We also have some incredibly talented people lined up for when Dreamers gets a publisher/funding that have shown great interest in being involved with the project that we unfortunately can’t disclose at the moment since some are quite famous in their field.. We really can’t wait for the day to unveil this information!

3. How long has "Dreamers" been in development?

Dreamers was first conceived back in 2002-03 and a first draft was written out that year. Screenplay, planning and some early concept art also began to take shape during those early years, but it wasn’t until we acquired the powerful “Reality Engine” that things really took off.

4. Do you have a release/finish date planned for "Dreamers"?

I am afraid it is not something that I am able to disclose at this time.

5. Will "Dreamers" be the official title of the game?

Originally, it was always considered as a working title, but everyone has been calling the project Dreamers for so long now that it really has grown on us. It also has a double meaning (if you play the game you will understand) and so I really believe that this will end up as our final title. We were a bit discouraged when films such as “The Dreamers” and “Dreamer” came out, but quickly realized they really have nothing in common with what we are doing.

6. What is the basic storyline of "Dreamers"?

Dreamers is a game about a young man in his 20's (Jorge) who suffers from a bizarre form of narcolepsy. He experiences sudden and uncontrollable attacks of deep sleep, sometimes accompanied by paralysis and hallucinations, which can occur at anytime and anywhere. More importantly, they cause him to dream...

Lately, these attacks have started to occur more often, appear to last longer and somehow have become harder to wake up from - unless he is able to find a way out of the dreams they bring. Afraid for his life, Jorge begins a quest to discover the reasons why his illness is getting worse, which is a race against not only the mystery of his predicament, but also a race against time before his next, and unavoidable – and quite possibly his last - deep sleep attack.

The game hopes to be an exhilarating adventure that has players race against time and face their own fears as they journey through a variety of levels spanning from dreams and nightmares, to vast beautiful mystical dream worlds and some real-life locations of beautiful Greece in which the game story is set.

7. What about next gen hardware will allow you to create the worlds of the living and the worlds in which Jorge dreams?

Technology in the field of developing games has definitely come a long way and it seems we are accelerating faster in shorter periods of time and in just 10 years time games will be so immersive, so realistic, with never before experienced gameplay that it will just be such an incredible thing to be around for! Our next generation engine is definitely going to provide the players with vast and incredibly detailed worlds to explore and the immense detail and realism we aim to have for our characters will be able to make the players really identify with them, really care for them, just like we do when we watch real-life actors in films. Character development is extremely important for us with Dreamers.


8. When falling into these narcoleptic states, will we find ourselves within nightmares?

Yes!!! In fact nightmares are a big part of Jorge’s journey. Our game has been characterized by someone as “Silent Hill meets The Neverending Story” which is pretty accurate actually. In fact, fear plays a big role in our game. We are taking the player's experience a step further where the game will personalize your experience based on the player’s real-life fears, which will be a feature we will unveil more about in the near future.

9. Could you give us an example of one of the dream worlds?

I wish I could! What I can tell you right now is that the game will sometimes trick players into thinking they are still in the real world, while in fact their character has been asleep for quite some time. This allows for some incredible story elements to take place and confuse the player to the point where they simply can’t trust anything they see and anticipate the unexpected at every turn, thus making the gameplay completely unpredictable!

10. I read that you are using the "reality engine", what made you decide to go with that instead of something like the Unreal 3.0 Engine?

It was extremely approachable, had some amazing features and the guys at Artificial Studios simply ROCK! They have supported our project from the start and customer support is 50% of any great purchase.

11. From looking at the concept art, you guys have a very unique art style...What are some inspirations that led you to this game and its design/mood?

Thank you, I am very proud of our concept artists! Well, some of the mood of the nightmares can be attributed to such films as Session 9, which in turn was also very similar to the Silent Hill games. That grungy look that sends shivers up your spine and you can’t help imagine yourself in those places will never - in my opinion – stop scaring people. The game also has a lot of Greek influence, from architecture, to characters and also some mythology but everything in the end has a bit of the Dreamgazers touch on top of that to provide a refreshing, unique look to the game. Of course for some of the dream levels, “The Neverending Story” (one of my favourite films as a child), was key in establishing what we wanted to ultimately achieve. Believe it or not, some of the most prominent parts of the game (just like the company name, Dreamgazers) came from actual real-life dreams that I had!


12. What are some unique gameplay elements in/planned for "Dreamers"?

Gameplay is one of our most ambitious features in Dreamers. To enhance the dream worlds and the overall experience, sometimes the players will be faced with unique gameplay styles. I unfortunately cannot discuss any more details about this at this time but I promise you it will be something unlike anything you’ve experienced before.

13. What ESRB rating are you aiming for? Basically, will the game have language, violence/gore, ect?

Personally I think the game would be rated M for Mature, since there are some themes in the game that wouldn’t be suitable for younger children. The game deals with adult subject matters quite frequently and also touches on matters such as religion, sexuality and other controversial matters, rarely seen in games.

14. If you bring the title to "next gen" consoles, would you guys plan on using the disc capacity of the PS3 to its advantage?

Isn’t that every developer’s Dream? More space? =)

15. So far, what are your thoughts on the PS3? thoughts on specs?

Very impressive! I can’t wait for it to come out! I also can’t wait for a year to pass and truly see developers who’ve really learned it inside out take full advantage of the specs and create some amazing games with it! Of course I hope Dreamers is on that list.

16. If you develop for the PS3, what features of the system would you plan to use to your advantage? How would they benefit "Dreamers"?

Physics will be something that will truly benefit our game, however everyone has seen more than their fair share of physics effects. We plan to use physics in a more cinematic way that will enhance the storyline and the overall visual experience. It’s all about using all these tools to create a realistic and immersive world for the player.

17. Do you plan on being at the Austin Game Convention this next year?

We attended the GDC last year and will be again next year. We are also extremely curious as to what the new E3 will be like, so we will be attending that as well. No plans yet for the event you mentioned.

18. The contest "Are you a Dreamer", is it still going?

Yes! It is still open! We were actually very surprised with how many people responded to the contest and the amount of excitement the contest stirred up! You should read some of these dreams!! ..and we thought our poor Jorge has some crazy nightmares…hehehe So yes! Please feel free to enter!

19. Is there anything else you would like to add about the game that we should know or anything about next gen development?

If I may, I would like to address your readers… We are still considered independent developers and are still trying to get the attention of the big boys of the industry, which means we truly appreciate all the support we’ve had from early fans of the game and true gamers looking for a refreshing and unique experience for their next generation gaming needs. We are gamers too! We too go to the store wondering why good games are becoming a rarity lately. That is why we love this type of support because it keeps us going! You are all helping developers like us with you support! Thank you and keep it up! So please visit our site and join our forum and show your support to our team and together lets shape the future of games! Thank you for listening!

We would like to thank George and the Dreamgazers team for their time in helping us put together this interview.

Visit their official website for more info: http://www.dreamgazers.com/


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