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Weird Dreams
Weird Dreams - Double Barrel Screenshot
Information 16 reviews 2 manuals Cheatcode 5 weblinks
8 screenshots 4 boxscans 1 diskscan 1 miscshot 3 conversions Gamemap
Year of the first release1989LicenseCommercial
Number of disks (or CD)1PublisherMedalist (MicroProse) - USA
MicroPlay (MicroProse) - USA
Rainbird (MicroProse) - Rest of the World
Number max of players1Budget publisher
Simultaneous max players1DeveloperUnknown
ArtistsCoder : James Hutchby
Graphician : Herman Serrano
Musician : David Whittaker
Misc : Herman Serrano
Misc : James Hutchby
Misc : Tony King
Language in manualEnglish
Amiga original gameno
Have cheatcodeyes
Have SPS releaseyes
WHD installyesWHD information
Updated  2021-04-18 23:44:56
HD installnoHD notes
CategoryAction Adventure
SubcategoryAction Adventure - Puzzle
ScrolltypeSingle Screen - Flip Screen
ThemeAbstract Concepts
ThemeFantasy - Nonsense World
ThemeGames - Multiple
ThemeHorror / Supernatural
Conversion hardwareAtari ST/E
Commodore C64/128
Tandy PC/IBM PCjr
Conversion notes

Based on 1989 Rainbird Atari ST release.
PC versions: CGA, EGA, VGA, Tandy

Classic compilationVirtual Reality Vol. 2
Page views: 5005 - Last update: 13th January 2016
Rarity: One version is common, at least one other version is rare One version is common, at least one other version is rareOne version is common, at least one other version is rare

[1] Game concept by Herman Serrano and Tony King; game design by Herman Serrano, James Hutchby and Tony King. Coding by James Hutchby. Graphics by Herman Serrano. Music by David Whittaker.

[2] Original release contents contain a novella by Rupert Goodwins, which details the background story of the game (and serves as manual lookup protection also) [see HERE].


[1] WEIRD DREAMS was in development for just over a year, and developer Herman Serrano drew upon several sources of inspiration for the game design and graphics:

"I wanted to do a game about nightmares. None of those featured in the game are based on my own dreams — they're more odd observations, I suppose. There are several nightmarish elements - there are a lot of teeth. It's because I had to go to the dentist - I hadn't been for about three years. The dentist turned out to be this strange Chinese looking guy with an Australian accent, and he tore my mouth apart. After that I had a phobia about teeth, and they seemed to creep in everywhere."

One less enamel-based idea, which was dropped because there were just too many to implement, was a tree of heads. "It was an idea for a painting originally," Herman confesses, "as were some of the other ideas. All the heads were asleep. As you approached the tree, the heads nearest would open one eye then both, and as through a sort of telepathy all the others would wake up."

Fortunately there's a possibility that this and other sequences may make an appearance in a sequel. Some of the imagery seems reminiscent of the work of surrealist artist Salvador Dali and other elements of Terry Gilliam's Monty Python animations. Were both a source of inspiration? "Yes." Herman confirms. "I've always been fond of surrealists like Dali, and Terry Gilliam's wonderful."

As far as other graphic artists are concerned, Herman's impressed with Mark Coleman's work on Speedball and Xenon II. "I'm really Into animation," he enthuses. "One thing I hate is computer game animation where two or three frames are used to animate a figure. There are 16 frames involved in the main character's walking alone. This could have been cut down, but James being the programmer we didn't need to. For Weird Dreams' animation I spent ages researching Eadweard Muybridge's work. He did masses of studies of people and animals, and produced some very early cinema-style frames of animation, like people walking, picking up buckets and so on." [Source: The One for 16-bit Games review, Issue 9 (June '89, pp78-80), courtesy of the Amiga Magazine Rack]

[2] A modified pre-release version of WEIRD DREAMS, designed to gain publicity and exposure for the game, was used as part of the weekly competition of ITV's 1980s/90s British children's TV show "MotorMouth" (see HERE for more info.).

At the time, however, developer Herman Serrano wasn't so sure that the TV exposure proved terribly helpful:

The appearance of Weird Dreams on ITV's MotorMouth before its release in the shops may well have increased public awareness, but for a game which centres around so many nightmarish surprises it could have proved more detrimental to its success than instrumental. Herman agrees: "Not only did people think it was a question and answer game, but it gave too much away and made it look too easy."

[Sources: The Bird Sanctuary and The One for 16-bit Games review, Issue 9 (June '89, pp78-80), courtesy of the Amiga Magazine Rack]

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