Cavern of Dreams review for PC

Platform: PC
Publisher: Super Rare Originals
Developer: Bynine Studio
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No
ESRB: Not Rated

If you want to know what kind of game Cavern of Dreams is, here’s a pretty good indicator: it’s currently available on Steam as part of a bundle that also includes games like Super Kiwi 64, Lunistice, and Toree 2 (a sequel to Toree 3D).

If you read that last paragraph and instantly purchased the bundle (or, better still, already owned it), then nothing more really needs to be said. Cavern of Dreams slots neatly alongside those games and their respective brands of ‘90s-infused 3D platforming. It’s not quite as good as any of them, to be sure, but it still plays and feels like something that could’ve come out on the N64.

If you haven’t played any of those games…well, first, you need to play them. But if you haven’t, and you need a bit more explanation (that you weren’t able to glean from the previous paragraph), Cavern of Dreams is very much a love-letter to the days of N64 3D platforming. That means blocky visuals, wild colour schemes, and action that veers back and forth between inspired and painfully boring.

Those visuals, obviously, are what stand out the most. Much like Super Kiwi 64 and Toree 2 (less so Lunistice, which borrows more from SEGA platformers of the era), Cavern of Dreams revels in smashing together colours that have no earthly business being together. While occasionally it works, more often than not it leads to a day-glo eyesore.

The same could be said of the platforming. Cavern of Dreams mostly plays exactly as you’d expect a retro 3D platformer to play, with a few annoying quirks (for example, getting the timing right on jumping immediately after landing, which gives you a second, even higher jump). The “mostly” comes from the fact that there aren’t really any enemies; you have a spinning punch, but that’s to move things out of the way, and the challenge comes almost entirely from collecting the many collectibles scattered everywhere.

In other words, Cavern of Dreams is very much a game for a specific kind of person. As noted above, someone who loves ‘90s 3D platformers, doesn’t mind a few quirks here and there, and has a high tolerance for gaudy colours. If that’s you, you’ll want to check this out.

Super Rare Originals provided us with a Cavern of Dreams PC code for review purposes.

Score: 6.5

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