The Fantasy Dimension

by Johan Berntsson


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A stroll in the woods…, September 14, 2023
by Rovarsson (Belgium)

This game is a very traditional fantasy quest played completely straight. Lots of classic tropes in there, none of them subverted or turned on their heads. I really like this sort of adventure, eschewing the irony or satire that is often added. It plays on my nostalgic tendencies.
(Mind you, I love reading more complex greyshaded fantasy too. And classic fantasy can be filled with some problematic tropes that are not sweetly nostalgic at all. But that’s another discussion. This game does none of that. Well, almost none, depending on your view on (Spoiler - click to show)dragon-slaughter)

The Fantasy Dimension is beautifully written. The locations get long paragraphs bringing the surroundings to the player’s mind’s eye. Fantasy has its solid collection of go-to settings, and this story does not try to get away from them. Indeed, it embraces those settings and draws them with a loving pen.

I particularly liked the descriptions of movement between locations, giving you a sense of real travel instead of zipping instantly from forest to castle.

I hesitate to call this a game. Rather, it is a near-puzzleless journey through the setting to fulfill the objective of your quest. Almost a walking simulator. As such, it is sorely lacking in depth. To hold the player’s attention and engagement, the world in such a work must be meticulously detailed. It is, in The Fantasy Dimension, but only in the initial descriptions. It would need much richer layers of implementation and perhaps some randomised scenes to bring more life and depth to the woods and the ruins.

I enjoyed this a lot, but a lot could be added to make it so much better.

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