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Dreamfall Chapters is the long-awaited sequel to acclaimed PC adventure games The Longest Journey and Dreamfall: The Longest Journey
Dreamfall Chapters is the long-awaited sequel to acclaimed PC adventure games The Longest Journey and Dreamfall: The Longest Journey
Dreamfall Chapters is the long-awaited sequel to acclaimed PC adventure games The Longest Journey and Dreamfall: The Longest Journey
21,858 backers pledged $1,538,425 to help bring this project to life.

A Halloween update: launch, reception & patches

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Dreamfall Chapters has now been out for over one week, and most of you have probably played the game. If you haven't, here's a reminder about how to claim your game key.

We hope you like it and that you're already looking forward to Book Two! It's great to see the ongoing discussions on our forum and elsewhere regarding the story, the characters and the universe. We love lurking and reading all your comments! There are so many things going on in Book One, we're sure the theory-crafting will continue until Book Two arrives.

We are completely overwhelmed by the response so far. Players seem to be very happy — the user scores on Steam and Metacritic are high, and both Twitter and our forum are full of positive feedback and happy vibes.

We are aware that some of you have had technical issues (more on that below) and we also know that not everyone is completely satisfied with Book One. That's not unexpected: it's not possible to make a game that appeals to absolutely everyone. But, hopefully, your experience will improve with forthcoming episodes!

The reviews from critics have so far ranged from 'cautiously optimistic' to very positive, with few outright negative reviews. The most common criticisms may be that Book One is a slow-ish start to a bigger and potentially intriguing story, and that some players may feel lost.

The pacing is intentional but obviously divisive: we wanted to establish Zoë's life in Europolis before kicking the plot into high gear, and to celebrate the mundane — something that's rare in games.

As for feeling lost: that's expected! And not just with new players. We introduce a lot of new characters and a brand new setting. Even long-term fans will feel hopefully lost at times. Don't worry: it will get clearer with time.

To help new players get up to scratch, we have released a Dreamfall: The Longest Journey recap video. This video is also included in the game with version 1.1.

In general, it seems like the critics who are most apprehensive about the game are still looking forward to seeing where the story goes in Book Two — and we think they are going to be very, very happy.

Regarding performance, we do know that some players have experienced technical issues — poor frame-rate, crashes — in version 1.0 and we apologise for that. We saw none of these issues on our own hardware, but the excellent feedback from players has helped us narrow things down.

Despite their obvious exhaustion from months of crunching, the team has hunkered down and worked really hard to deliver version 1.1. Last night we uploaded a patch to Steam that fixes a large number of performance related issues. You can read more about version 1.1 here.

The response to this patch has been positive. Most players are seeing moderate to huge increases in performance, and fewer memory related crashes on all platforms.

We are releasing another patch (v1.1.1) to fix some new (and some still-lingering) bugs. This latest version will hopefully go live on Steam today, and will also make its way to GOG and the Humble Store. Humble should have their version live before end-of-day in San Francisco (if we deliver it in time) while GOG might not have it up until Monday.

We apologise for the staggered releases. Steam is the only store where we have direct access to publish patches and new versions on our own. With GOG and Humble, we have to go through a longer process, which can result in delays. This is not their fault, of course: it simply takes more time, and we didn't want to push 1.1 out to GOG and Humble before we had some immediate feedback from our Steam guinea-pigs!

Thanks again for all your support and patience these past few weeks. It's been a stressful and exhausting time for the team, but seeing your comments and feedback is very motivating for us. And we really appreciate you guys taking the time to tell us how you feel. After all, you are the reason we made this game in the first place!

We will return next week with more thoughts about launch and the past few weeks of production, a fresh look at what the team is currently working on, and perhaps some exciting news about Book Two!

Until then:

Happy Halloween!

Comments

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    1. Anguy on

      Please let us activate Wonkers in Book 2! He's so adorable

    2. Georg Pfeffer on

      Hej Red Threads, greetings from Germany!!

      I've been waiting for a Dreamfall successor so many bloody YEARS by now.... listened to all your backers' information mails... and now I finaly can play Chapters. Thank you so much! Honestly! Well... let's give you some feedback, since I'v just finished chapter one!

      PRO

      - The atmosphere in general is marvelous. Even though I rather prever Arcadia ;-) Many details, effects, music, people walking and talking... feels good!
      - Zoe's character is fantastic, lovely. The way she talks, thinks... I have to laugh and grin loads of times!! :-) Thank you!
      - Also I like the English accents... proves: not everything nowadays needs to be so American...
      - ...which brings me to my next pro: Well, as a German Bratwurst I really like the German expressions used, hehe :-))))
      - Complexity of tasks still is "easy". So many adventure games rather prefer to challenge the gamer very hard. To me... as a "casual" gamer I get frustrated quite early if quests are too heavy... so, you did just fine concerning this... again! =)

      CONTRA

      - Well, I really like this to completely disappear in the Dreamfall's world... enjoying the atmosphere with all its pieces, fragments... so, it's annoying that sometimes technical or graphical imperfections occur, e. g. people or people and items merge... I don't know how you call this, the physics? I mean, you've developed so many years? I would have accepted one or two more months of waiting in order to get a "perfect" physical world :-)
      - Second contra is... well.. the shortness of part one! :D Hopefully I/we don't have to wait toooo long! ;-) Really, can't wait. Go, go, go!!! You lighten my winterly evenings! =)

      Best regards (again) from Germany. Believe me, you have many backers and supporters here! :-)

    3. Martin O
      Superbacker
      on

      @Russell Deitch: I agree :-)

    4. Russell Deitch on

      Martin O, I agree with you about two things - the more RAM you have, the less point of a swap file and DF:C is great! :)

    5. Martin O
      Superbacker
      on

      @Russell Deitch: if there is no swap file there is no disk IO at all. Everything stays in RAM until it gets full and causes applications to crash.
      Talking about harddrives: if the swap file needs to be used it dramatically reduces performance for other accesses to that harddrive because of head movement between swap file and other files.
      Though nowadays you use SSDs (yeah!) and put at least OS and the swap file/partition on it.

      Anyway: if your swap file is used then you have too less RAM (or you are using faulty applications with memory leaks) -> buy more unless you are maxed out, RAM is ridiculously cheap and simple to replace.

      P.S.: To stay on-topic: Dreamfall Chapters! Wohooo!

    6. Russell Deitch on

      I think people will be happier when Book 2 is out and the first two episodes can be played together.

    7. Russell Deitch on

      Sorry - non-contiguous data.

    8. Russell Deitch on

      Martin O, you need to think about what the disk head does if there's no swap file (non-contiguous space / chaining).

    9. speedster -Armikrog Army Annelid- $4.96 on

      Some people are clearly enjoying this initial episode, so I think RTG did the right thing in making it available now. Releasing in pieces should not delay the release of the full game, so those of us who don't want to have to keep stopping in the middle (I'm with you there) can just wait for the last episode to be released, no harm done.

    10. Eric Pipedream Leisy on

      I love the dream fall series, but I have to admit to being a little underwhelmed... I think the episodic release for this game is not the greatest match. As a long time fan of these games, in my eyes nothing much happened in book one... It didn't really feel very linked to the other games. It moved slow, answers none of the questions setup in the previous game and doesn't really feel like it had a story arc or any kind of major conflict. I suspect it's because this was designed to be one game, and so taking the intro out of e whole game and just playing it by itself makes it seem out of place. I can imagine hat the wait between book one and book two is going to feel as long as he wait between dream fall and chapters. Going forward I think I'm going to wait until the entire game is finished because playing the game in disconnected abrupt chunks is very unsatisfying. I think red thread games should just wait another year to finish the game rather than releasing it in awkward chunks.

    11. Martin O
      Superbacker
      on

      @Russel Deitch: You got something mixed up. Swap file is used to extend the memory by allowing memory of inactive applications to be swapped to disk (similar like you said). But this actually increases disk I/O! Also the used size is not limited to size of RAM.

      But the best solution is to never use swap space at all -> get more RAM instead :-)

      Btw. on Windows 32-bit processes are limited to 2 GB of memory (per process), even if you have 4 GB installed.

    12. Russell Deitch on

      Read RAM -> read swap-file -> read (rest of) hard drive. The purpose of the swap-file is to minimise disk i/o.

    13. Russell Deitch on

      To add to Valery, pagefile.sys (virtual memory) is a temporary area on disk for the contents of RAM, You can make it as large as you like but only the size of your RAM will be used - the rest is empty space.

    14. Missing avatar

      Sigel on

      Thanks for the update. I love the game so far! I definitely get that Dreamfall vibe but with better graphics and gameplay.
      Is the soundtrack still planned for today?

    15. Valeriy on

      And some words about Unity: rumour has it this game engine is not very powerful and after seeing Europolis I can say this location is the most beautiful scene I saw on Unity 3D so it is safe to say this location really "plays on a fault's edge". And it is also a 3rd party software…
      I wonder whether Unity 5 will change the situation?

    16. Valeriy on

      @Sean "Nz17" Robinson:
      No, even with PAE (Physical Address Extension) enabled neither 32-bit Linux nor Windows can assign more than 4GB RAM to a single application. So if Dreamfall: Chapters wants more than that's it: hello desktop. The only way to solve this is to ensure the game will never demand more than 4 GB RAM.

      And in case of your set-up: swap technology has its limitations. One can not compensate lack of physical RAM with lots of swap. Swap partitions or swap files provide only temporary means to store unused memory pages. While in this "deposit" the page can not be randomly accessed thus "RAM" (as in Random Access Memory) is not fully applied to such "stored" pieces of memory. For CPU to have access to information in memory it have to be returned into physical RAM. So, if one operation performs an action on some data array (be it texture or something else), but there is no place for said array in physical RAM then the result will be a crash.
      In other words, if you have only 2 GB RAM but Europolis location demands 2,5 GB of RAM then no amount of "virtual memory" (aka RAM + swap) will save the day.

    17. Missing avatar

      Flat Eric on

      What about better and more challenging puzzles? Despite that, the camera can be quite painful. All in all, a good start.

    18. Michael Hartmann
      Superbacker
      on

      @Sean: The minimum requirement is 3 GB RAM. Your 2 GB are probably the main reason for your crashes. I'm actually surprised that it only crashes 80% of the time.

    19. Rezo Kaishauri on

      Excellent! Can I get back to the welding now?

    20. Maus Merryjest AGL589 on

      I . fricking. LOVED it.

      I can't wait for book two. It has been so long since I've seen these characters. It feels good to be on the journey once more.

    21. Sean "Nz17" Robinson on

      @Valery
      Yes, more optimizations would definitely be better, true. I do feel like I am in a beta test with all the crashes I get with the Windows version of the game. About 80% of the time, the game crashes when I go out to the streets of Europolis. Performance was fine in the beginning of the game, it is just the outside environment of Europolis that is causing all the trouble for me, even with the least-demanding in-game settings. I look forward to one day getting to see the rest of the game.

      Optimizing can be very difficult depending on how much of a performance increase the team is looking to get, and whether it is prioritizing CPU performance, GPU performance, VRAM usage, or RAM usage. For some reason, right now on my dual-core computer, it looks like version 1.1.1 of the application is only utilizing a single core rather than both.

      But as 32-bit Linux supports up to 64 GiB of RAM, I think that distributing and supporting a 32-bit executable for Linux sooner rather than later would really help out those like myself who are running a 32-bit Linux-based O.S. I am certain that if this small request were fulfilled, then Dreamfall Chapters would run much better under my Debian Linux installation than under my Windows XP installation. I wonder if having DEP (Data Execution Prevention) enabled versus disabled would make any difference?

      Hardware
      ---
      OS's: Windows XP (32-bit), Debian Linux (32-bit)
      CPU: Intel Pentium Dual-Core CPU E5200 @ 2.50 GHz
      RAM: 2 GiB RAM
      Graphics/video card: nVidia GeForce GT 240 with 1 GiB VRAM

      I am pretty sure that even though this computer is not the best there is, that it should be more than capable of playing through all of Dreamfall Chapters if the program is properly debugged and optimized. After all, things like Magrunner: Dark Pulse, Strike Suit Zero, and Portal 2 run very well (30 - 60 F.P.S.) when running at a 1440x900 wide-screen resolution with this configuration.

    22. Valeriy on

      @Sean "Nz17" Robinson:
      At this point the 32-bit version probably will make no good to you. Right now the game uses more than 4GB RAM on my machine in Europolis (Linux, HIB version) so we should probably wait for optimizations first.
      Overall this release can be counted as beta-testing really.

    23. Sean "Nz17" Robinson on

      RTG, I realize you guys have a lot on your plate right now. But could you please release a 32-bit executable soon for the Linux version of the game?

      I wrote to you guys several days ago about this, before the release of version 1.1 and 1.1.1. But neither of these most recent releases included a 32-bit executable. It is still a "ELF 64-bit LSB executable, x86-64, version 1 (SYSV), dynamically linked (uses shared libs), for GNU/Linux 2.6.15, BuildID[sha1]=d342271358cdf934f32ea2ea3438e01e6261ab3d, stripped." This is the Steam release, by the way.

    24. Missing avatar

      Osama Ammar on

      I've got nothing more to say than "thank you". You brought the journey back and that was all I wanted. There was a time in about 2002 when i was first playing TLJ that I felt like I was totally immersed in the world and I've never really felt the same again about a game. Can't wait for more and to be able to dedicate the time to exploring the beautiful world you have created. Please rest now - sounds like you have all been working so hard that I can't help but feel guilty for wanting more.

    25. Raven Woods on

      I've played it and finished it. Pretty satisfied with the game and having a higher-mid computer specs, I had no serious technical issues. Framerate drops but not enough to make the game unplayable. But my main complaint is the lensflare that every single light source causes. When combined, they can be headache inducing in some areas and parts of the game. Wish there was an option to turn that off. Or like really tone it down. It looks nice when it works well, but in Europolis, it ends up being too much. Everything just ends up having lensflare that bugs (?) and stretches all across the screen, making it into a neon mess. I know this is not a priority, but would be great if you guys looked into it eventually.
      Cheers.

    26. Frank Talbot on

      I've downloaded the game and was super excited to try it but, to be honest, I'm super busy these days and have other games that I want to complete first. Still, I've tried it for maybe 30-45 minutes and I was very impressed with what I've seen. The slower pacing didn't mind me at all, the game didn't have any obvious bugs on my system and overall I can't wait to have more free time to really start playing it.

      So anyway, good job again guys. I'm happy for you that the critics are favorable and I'm glad that I backed this KS project. Keep up the good work! :)

    27. Rinu on

      "This is not their fault, of course: it simply takes more time, and we didn't want to push 1.1 out to GOG and Humble before we had some immediate feedback from our Steam guinea-pigs!"
      - Lol, a nice slamdunk.

      I am really happy to see the positive response. Obviously because it means I am going to play something cool when I launch the complete DFC but also for you guys and other fans. :)
      Well done!

    28. Vasiliy - Dream Traveller on

      Can I just say that I love you guys? This update is so sweet it, it made me smile with joy and then I was about to cry due to strong emotions:-) I'm still replaying TLJ, caught a glimpse of DFC before patch and it run slowly in my PC. I hope it'll run faster now:-) Thank you for your hard work!

    29. symbiotics on

      so far, with the new patch works great and the performance in Europolis was greatly improved, still some square lens flares here and there but I understand that these are an artistic decision as you told me and don't bother me as much, but the performance now is excellent. Great job and thanks!

    30. Tom Brückner on

      Just for the records: It seems to me as if I now have many more of these strange lighting artefacts. To be honest, I do not really like all of these "flares", as they look quite unnatural. Especially, if they grow to cover larger portions of the screen.

    31. Tom Brückner on

      Thanks for this update. Now my Logitech F710 controller works like a charm! That's great, because I do not need any keyboard emulations anymore. I also saw that you tackled the German voice-overs. Hopefully, they are complete now. The video is still missing German voice-over, but I can live with that. BTW: I do not really get why the video includes a preview of DFC. For me, any preview is kind of a spoiler. So I would prefer to have the DF story in the video only.

    32. Jeremie Lariviere
      Superbacker
      on

      Wonderful, thanks for the update! I've been waiting for the bugs go get patched :-) and I'll probably start playing soon.

    33. internisus on

      "we wanted to establish Zoë's life in Europolis before kicking the plot into high gear, and to celebrate the mundane — something that's rare in games."

      I greatly appreciate this mentality, as I very much enjoy experiencing the mundane in games as I settle into strange characters' shoes and their settings. My usual example is how much I like the testing exercises that serve to train the player in the Homeworld games' first missions; I wish these would last longer before everything inevitably goes bad.

    34. Christian Page on

      sent them a message about it already but here it is.
      love the game enjoyed it alot but a few small issues

      if you go to do the shitbot work with other robots first he mentions the hold music from the other mission even if you have not done it yet

      also when you bring shitbot home if you look at him before you talk to the boss you say you saved him even though you have not yet.
      those to fixes will hopefully just be a extra value cheak in code

      a bigger issue is one of the laser fences in europolos that blocks you from going down does not go far enough across. you can walk between it and the metal bar. i have a screen cap if you'd like me to send it.

      hopefully that fix wont be too hard but worst case senaro just add a collision box there and make it into an invisablo wall.

      the last one is as a baby the door behind mom has no colission

    35. Missing avatar

      Wayne Naylor
      Superbacker
      on

      Once I can play it I shall, I have claimed it and I look forward to it, I just don't have a good enough rig at the moment

    36. Shatners Bassoon on

      Just tell me when the final bug fixed version is out with the official launch. I have become sick of playing kickstarted games that aren't finished yet.

    37. John Greene on

      Can someone please clarify the situation with 1.1 (or 1.1.1) and the Europolis crashing? I'm running on a beefy iMac (but *not* running Yosemite) and, like countless others, have experienced all sorts of freezing/beachball in and around Nela's cart, regardless of graphics settings. Does 1.1 solve this or do I need 1.1.1? And in terms of actually getting the patch, do I just need to sit on the humblebundle page and refresh every once in a while waiting for it to show up? The 10/28 version (the one I'm running now) still freezes in Europolis. Thanks, all!

    38. Tina Bryntesen - Dream Traveller on

      @Bobby Allen:
      I have answered your question both on the "regular" comments thread here, and in the forum thread you made. Please go have a look (and the forum is a great place if you need more help)

    39. Missing avatar

      Stella-Terra Clemens on

      April? Please tell me April will be in book 2... ;_;

    40. Jean-Claude on

      Cool I for one am looking forward to the performance fixes,

      I have a slightly older system (dual core PC(2.8 Ghz), but with a good amount of ram (6GB) and video memory (1GB) so I expected slight decrease in performance since it was mentioned quad core systems would be more optimal. Though I found that the game once in Europolis (outside) had to be played on Low settings, from Medium which I used everywhere else without problem, as the CPU was simply taxed while outside in the city, even slightly so on Low. Hopefully the new patch help with this :)

      Also I actually enjoyed the pace of book one.

    41. Simplex on

      This question was probably asked to death, but is there an approximate release date of Chapter 2? :)

    42. Red Thread Games Creator on

      For those of you waiting for all five episodes to become available: most likely September next year!

      After Book Two, however, there will be a very natural break-point in the story. Book Three picks up events several months after the end of Book Two, so even if you don't want to play the game in an episodic format, it might be worth pretending it's a game in two halves (sort of like the third Avengers movie) and play books one and two when they are both released. At one point we even considered doing two halves instead of five episodes.

    43. Missing avatar

      Mihir-Pirate King of the Obsidian Order on

      Patiently waiting for the whole thing to be released as well.

    44. Cristian Tane on

      Like VondeVon, I'm also patiently waiting for the whole thing, since I don't wanna wait God knows how long between episodes. Glad to see all the positive response though, and hopefully by the time the game is done and I'll finally be playing it, all issues will be resolved :)

    45. Palindrome Bob-XSF-I'm in AGL589-BG5.22
      Superbacker
      on

      I've played until it switches from Zoe to Kian and a bit further lately and experienced no crashes or anything else negative in my DRM free Linux version, so thank you! Also thanks for the recap video, I remember TLJ a lot better than Dreamfall.
      ### Member of the Pinkerton Road Cavalry ###
      ### Dreamfall Traveller ###

    46. Fishos on

      Is there a video recap for the original game (The Longest Journey) from 1999? I played it, but it has been 15 years... so I don't remember much details. Also, is the new game good enough to play yet, or should I wait for more patches? Thanks.

    47. Missing avatar

      Mawthra on

      When can we expect our Kickstarter bonuses? In the Humble Store, I only have two PDF files, but should have gotten the soundtrack, etc.

    48. Pierre Aden on

      Enjoying the game very much, thank you for all the efforts you put into this!

    49. Bobby Allen
      Superbacker
      on

      is there documentation somewhere on all the commands? Stuck, I am being told to use my super power, how does one do that?

    50. Michael Hartmann
      Superbacker
      on

      @Caroline: It works great on my Mac now. I haven't made it to Europolis yet which seems to be particularly challenging, but I played for about two hours yesterday without any crashes.