New jobs can be exciting, but they also be kind of scary. Taking on the role of a Remote Dream Analyst is definitely the latter, and is what the player will be doing in Dave Lasala's Matilda's Horrible Dream, an "atmospheric, minimalist, horror runner" that is now available on PC and Android devices.
It is the responsibility of the Dream Analyst to guide Matilda safely through her nightmares, a place where she is endlessly chased by a monster that resembles a clown with sharp teeth and claws - features that Lasala added after consulting with his daughter on what makes a scary monster. It seems like she knows her stuff.
While running, players will be able to turn lights on to slow the monster down, or even shine a flashlight to temporarily freeze it in its tracks. It will never stop for long, though, and the only way to save Matilda from her nightmares is to reach the "Dream Exit." In trying to achieve this, Lasala states that players will experience an "ominous, eerie atmosphere" with "engrossing, unearthly sound design," and suggests that play with headphones will improve this further. There is also a high score system, which aims to add some fun and addictive gameplay to the fear of escaping a nightmare.
Lasala’s inspiration for MHD came when he was putting together a few simple game ideas, with a plan to improve his Unity skills. After deciding on featuring a clown as the pursuing creature, which he’d always found to be “creepy and mysterious,” ever since Stephen King’s IT, he was been faced with challenges that many a game developer can probably relate to. The most important of these challenges came after the game was actually developed, as he struggled to find an audience for his game, a horror of a more casual variety.
Matilda's Horrible Dream is available for free on desktop, and there is both a free version on Android (with ads) and a paid version for $0.99 USD (without ads).