Dare To Dream Is An Asymmetrical Game About Fighting Back Against The Nightmares

Seth Ryals-Fernandes

Seth Ryals-Fernandes is the owner and main author at TableTopCrazy. His love for modern board games is still budding, and he enjoys writing here at TableTopCrazy as a hobby.

The Quick Deets on Dare to Dream:

  • 2-4 Players
  • Ages 10+
  • Approximately 45 min to play
  • €30 ($44.64) for Box Copy or €8 ($9.40) for Print and Play
  • Currently being funded on Kickstarter
  • Estimated Release April 2018
  • Kickstarter Page

Let’s explain why Dare to Dream is so unique

All asymmetrical games interest me in a certain way. The idea that you and a team of friends are pitted against one person is intriguing to me, more from a social standpoint than a mechanical standpoint.

That aside Dare to Dream is a very unique game in the asymmetrical genre in my opinion. It is fairly simple. One player is controls the Darkness (Nightmares) and 1-3 players control the Dreamer/s. The goal of the Darkness player is to get the Dreamer/s to wake up a certain amount of times. To understand how they do this we have to talk about the main game loop.

But first comes the setup. The setup of the game is fairly simple. There are 3 decks:

  1. The Dreamer Deck: Containing items to equip Guardians with (more on them later). As well as Wards (again more on these later). And finally Action cards.
  2. The Guardian Deck: Containing Guardians, of which each Dreamer will have a choice of 2 of 4 at the beginning of the game.
  3. The Darkness Deck: Which contains Monsters, Actions, and Nightmares.

First thing you do is shuffle all these decks separately. You deal 4 guardians out to each Dreamer. Each dreamer picks two guardians, ideally coordinating to cover all types of Monsters. Each guardian has a strength on it as well.

After they have chosen those you deal each Dreamer 4 cards from the dreamer deck.

I know its a little confusing. Stick with me here.

Then comes the Darkness player setup. Which is very simple. You just deal the Darkness player 4 cards from the Darkness deck. Which that player will hold until the next phase.

After this each dreamer equips any equipment they desire on their guardians, as well as wards. Augmenting them in whatever ways it states on the card. The main thing to note is that these guardians do not change. As a mechanical choice, and I’m assuming to match the theme, the Darkness player is the only one that gets to change things. The Dreamers can still play action cards. But their guardians and wards remain for the duration of the game.

Then comes the main phase of the game. The sleeping phase. Each Dreamer has a little card that signifies whether they are asleep or awake. During this phase each Dreamer will flip their card to say “asleep”.

Then the Darkness player has the opportunity to either Lurk or Strike. If they Lurk they have the opportunity to discard one card to draw a card and they move the hour counter forward.

Strike is the other option, which lets the Darkness player lay down two cards which are either Nightmare cards, Monster cards or a combination of the two. If they are Monster cards they get to choose which Guardian they are attacking. If they are Nightmare cards they immediately take effect. Then you compare the strength of the monster and the strength of the guardian. If Monster is too strong for the Guardian than that player wakes up, giving the Darkness player a point.

The game ends when either the Darkness player scores enough points and wins, or the Dreamers win by lasting through the entire night.

A couple complaints about Dare to Dream

I try to not complain about any games that I look at on here. I think getting a game funded on Kickstarter is already hard enough without a lot of negativity being thrown at the game. But here I can’t help but do it as I feel like it would be a little dishonest of me to exclude these thoughts.

My complaints aren’t really even around the game itself, but really the Kickstarter and the way it was handled. Most Kickstarters have a copy of the rules or some reviews, sometimes even a full playthrough video. Dare to Dream has one video talking about how to play. It covered the basic rules fairly well, but was really unclear about a few things.

Like what happens when the player is awake? It doesn’t say if they are eliminated or how they go back to sleep. I had to dig through the comments to find someone else asking, and when the developers addressed it they basically said its in the rules, which are not available. Not addressing what actually happens.

This kind of annoys me. I know they are a 2 man team, and are probably super busy and tired and working like crazy. But to basically dodge a general question about the game seems like a bad move to me.

There were also other rules that were just ignored and questions I had that were not answered. Which are too lengthy to go into here.

Overall thoughts on Dare to Dream

Dare to Dream looks like a fun game. It really does. I think the idea is really cool. The fact that you only get to see a few Guardians every game gives the game a certain amount of replayability. Especially since the Guardian deck looks like it is pretty sizeable.

The art is absolutely beautiful as well.

Dare to Dream

It actually reminds me a lot of a new indie game that is popular on Steam called Hollow Knight.

Anyways, the game looks really good. Besides my frustrations with the way the rules explanations were handled it looks like a fun game. As I said earlier asymmetrical games always interest me. It is something that I might look at picking up if it goes to retail. But won’t be something I choose to pick up at the Backer level.

Seth Ryals-Fernandes

Seth Ryals-Fernandes is the owner and main author at TableTopCrazy. His love for modern board games is still budding, and he enjoys writing here at TableTopCrazy as a hobby.

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