"Over the edge of the purple down,A Magical Land or Another Dimension comprising the collective dreams of humanity. Can be a collective dream, or the dream of a specific person. Generally surreal, nonsensical, and psychologically symbolic. Alternatively, just adorable randomness. Usually divided into two halves or factions—nightmares and good dreams. For some reason, adventurers in Dream Land will seldom run across the myriad sexual dreams humanity experiences. Odd that, as you'd think there'd be a huge Red Light District. May provide a setting for Talking in Your Dreams. In medieval Europe it was commonplace for a writer to situate a story in Dream Land, as a way of apologizing for the fictional quality. As fiction became more respectable, the Dream Land became chiefly used for fantasy works, as it provided a reason why the Magical Land does not obey ordinary laws of nature. As fantasy became more respectable (for certain values of "respectable"), the Dream Land came to be used only in fictional settings relying on actual dreams. Still, this makes this Older Than Print. Has nothing to do with the Dream Land on Pop Star (despite being the Trope Namer) or the Julien K song "Dreamland." See also Dream People, Dream Apocalypse. Not to be confused with a Magical Land which is accessed through dreaming (or to be more precise, sleeping and having your consciousness transferred).
Where the single lamplight gleams,
Know ye the road to the Merciful Town
That is hard by the Sea of Dreams—
Where the poor may lay their wrongs away,
And the sick may forget to weep?"
Where the single lamplight gleams,
Know ye the road to the Merciful Town
That is hard by the Sea of Dreams—
Where the poor may lay their wrongs away,
And the sick may forget to weep?"
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Anime & Manga
- In X/1999, all dreams are connected and there are a few specially-gifted individuals (called yumemi, or "dreamseers") who can travel among them and use the Dreamscape to view the future. It's here, in example, that Kakyou Kuzuki meets his beloved Hokuto Sumeragi, and years later strikes an Inter Generational Friendship with his fellow yumemi Kotori.
- XXX Holic and Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE- depict yumemi with similar powers, but take it a step further and make the Dreamscape into a dimension of its own, which souls alone can enter and dreamseers can manipulate.
- In Yumegari, the yumegari and yumemori work together to keep order in people's dreams.
- The aptly named land of Vision in Brave Story.
- After School Nightmare centers around a high school class based on this.
- Elysion in the Super S season of Sailor Moon. It's actually what remains of the Golden Kingdom of the Earth, aka the birthplace of Mamoru's past self Prince Endymion. Helios aka Pegasus is its Guardian.
- In Rozen Maiden everyone and their doll has a personal Mental World for dreams, but on the outside all these are connected through the World Tree, forming one large navigable space.
- The titular heroine and most of the antagonists of Yumekui Merry are Dream Demons, all of whom come from here. Usually, the only way to get through from their reality into ours is to possess a human being as a vessel; Merry came all the way through by herself, completely by accident, and can't figure out how to get back. Additionally, our other protagonist Yumeji possesses the ability to see the auras of people haunted by Dream Demons, and enter their dreamworlds while they're awake. He refers to the intervening space between dreams and reality as a "daydream", the concept of which puzzles Merry.
- The ending of Eureka Seven movie. The final scene either takes place in Renton's dream, or the real world merged and connected with Renton's dream.
- Moera in Yumeria.
- In the Digimon Adventure canon the Digital World is made from computer data and the dreams of children.
- Onegai My Melody gives us Mari Land, a bright, happy dimension formed by the dreams of all humans on Earth, populated anthropomorphic stuffed animals and fields of colorful flowers implied to represent said dreams. All nightmares are banished to a far-off part of Mari Land to prevent the Spirit of the Dark Power from getting even stronger than he already is, as we learn in the 2nd series Kuru Kuru Shuffle!.
- The Dreaming in DC's Sandman. This place has a huge red-light district, but most stories don't go there. There are also individual characters who are Anthropomorphic Personifications of particular kinds of nightmares (the Corinthian, Brute, Glob), or wet dreams (Quivering Mary) or even lovely dream places (Fiddler's Green). The Area in Peter Milligan's Shade, the Changing Man, another Vertigo title, was originally called 'The Area of Madness', but as more entities started coming out of it, the definition was expanded to the land of dreams, the land of the dead, the place where all human consciousness gravitates.
- The magic system in Bone is based around tapping into the world of Dream Land, which in this case is a "Force"-like alternate world that permeates everything and everyone.
- The setting of The Maxx shifts back and forth between the "real" world and The Outback, a subconscious world resembling a prehistoric Australia populated by fantastic creatures and psychological symbolism. The Outback featured in most of the series is that of protagonist Julie Winters, but everybody supposedly has an Outback, and physical travel between them and the "real" world can be achieved by those with the proper knowhow.
- The Marvel Universe has not one but several Dream Lands. Arguably the most prominent is the Dream Dimension ruled by the Doctor Strange enemy Nightmare, who lives up to his name by inflicting terrorizing nightmares on humans. Lesser known parts of the mental plane include the Realm of Madness, which Spider-Man's enemy Venom was briefly trapped on, and the Mindscape, a dimension that connects the minds of all sentient beings, the home of the 1990s superhero Sleepwalker.
- Little Ego is an adult-oriented, erotic parody of the classic Little Nemo comics by Vittorio Giardino. The main character, called Ego, is a woman seemingly in her middle twenties. As in Little Nemo, each story is about her having a dream, and she wakes up in the last panel. Whereas Little Nemo talked to his mother after waking up, Little Ego thinks what she will tell her psychoanalyst.
- Mother's Oats, a psychedelic underground comic, featured crackpot inventor Cecil Quill devising a means for himself and his assistant to visit the dream world. At one point, Quill pokes his head through a portal and is temporarily driven mad, having witnessed a parakeet dream.
- Poet Anderson: The Dream Walker has the Dream World, with locations formed by the collective dreaming subconscious of humanity. The comics explore more of the Dream World than the short film, which sticks to the hub city of Genesis.
- In Aeon Natum Engel, the dreamland is devoured like in the source material Cthulhu Tech, but since its still getting digested, the mages of the Special Services, which doesn't exist, certainly didn't perform a special ritual to summon Moloch using special properties of the dreamlands, and most certainly were not killed in process.
- After dying and ending up in Taylor's head in Recoil, Lisa is able to create entire landscapes for Taylor to visit while dreaming, or in self-hypnotic trances.
- In When the Cold Wind is a Callin', as a magi Merida can enter the Dreamlands, with help from North and the Sandman.
Film — Animation
- In Paprika, scientists invent a portable device that allows people to enter other people's dreams and record them. Things start going wrong when someone hijacks an insane person's dream for terrorist purposes, and then Dream Land and reality start to merge.
- Poet Anderson: The Dream Walker cuts between the Dream World and the Waking World, focusing mainly on the hub city of Genesis.
- Twice Upon a Time involves a conflict between Frivoli, the land of good dreams, and the Murkworks, the land of bad dreams.
Film — Live Action
- The Land of Oz, as portrayed in The Wizard of Oz, may be the best-known example of a Dream Land in modern culture. In the movie, Oz is a head-injury-induced hallucination on the part of the heroine, Dorothy. Note that the L. Frank Baum novel on which the movie is based represents Oz as a real country.
- In Dreamscape, agents for good and evil enter the dream world of the President—the latter to assassinate him from the inside, and the former to save him.
- Inception is based upon the idea of creating a dream land inside another person's brain and entering it mentally. As such most of the story's events take place there, or even all of them.
- The A Nightmare on Elm Street series, particularly the later films, where the children discover they can use hypnosis to enter the dream world together and give themselves superpowers.
- Both Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass prove to take place in Dreamland.
- Celestial City and the many other worlds created by the high Earth spirits in Astral Dawn are considered dream worlds. Another astral world belonging to a high spirit god named Hypnos sets a perfect example of this trope. His world is an island with a golden beach called the Land of Nod. The sand from Nod's golden beach serves as sleep sand for the Sandman.
- Jodi Lynn Nye's Dreamland mixes a fantasy realm which is subject to the rules of constant change.
- H.P. Lovecraft did a number of stories set in a fairly surreal and oddly-light-on-the-horror-he's-known-for Dreamlands. The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath includes Nyarlathotep, an enigmatic and dangerous being found in his other work, one of the major links between this Dream Cycle and the Cthulhu Mythos.
- These stories were based on Lord Dunsany's dream-like storytelling. Lord Dunsany himself also wrote several stories about the world of dreams, most notably 'Idle Days on the Yann' and its sequels.
- Lovecraft's Commonplace Book includes an unused idea for a story about a man whose dreams coalesce into a "half-mad world of quasi-material substance in another dimension".
- Fantastica of The Neverending Story is made up of humanity's stories, dreams and creativity — and often takes on a surreal, dreamlike nature.
- The End of the World in Ender's Game first appears as the last of several Videogame Settings in the Free Play game, but turns out to have a much more personal meaning for Ender.
- In Eric Nylund's novel Pawn's Dream, for a group of magic users the dream world is very real (If you die there you can't sleep here, so you'll die pretty quickly of exhaustion), and even weirder; the "real" world is just the dream world's dream world.
- Tel'aran'rhiod (translated "World of Dreams" from Fictionary), from The Wheel of Time, is a shared dream of everyone from every possible world that mirrors real-world locations. Ordinary people sometimes dream themselves into it, dangerously, as Your Mind Makes It Real. In addition, if a Dream Walker doesn't watch her thoughts, and they stray onto sexual topics, odd things can happen, including their clothes shifting suitably.
- Tel'aran'rhiod is characterised by ephemerality, with the positions of things like doors and books changing every time one looks. It's possible for a dreamer to assert their will and imagination onto their surrounding, to the point of changing it completely, but they cannot alter their own bodies, while anything they create can injure them, affecting their real selves; thus combat between skilled dreamwalkers takes the form of a reality-warping battle of wills.
- Wolves have a natural connection to Tel'aran'rhiod, as do the handful of "wolf brothers/sisters" (people who have some form of supernatural link with wolves). Because of these links, they have an innate talent for manipulating the dream world that can rival that of a dreamwalker.
- L. Sprague de Camp's Solomon's Stone takes place in a world populated by figures from daydreams.
- Clive Barker's Books of the Art contain Quiddity which is essentially this, though, in the second book, the question is asked if whether Quddity is our Dream World or if we are its.
- In P.C. Hodgell's Chronicles of the Kencyrath books, the dreams of the Kencyr form a dreamscape made of their individual dreams, from which one can journey to the soulscape (the land of the collective soul images of the Kencyr).
- After Hamelin was a retelling of The Pied Piper in which a deaf girl is the only one left when the Piper takes away the town's children and sends them to dream land—so she has to fall asleep to find them and bring them back.
- The Great Divorce by C. S. Lewis takes place in Dreamland.
- In The Dream Merchant, characters can travel to Umaya, which is the Dream Land. Oh, and there is indeed a Red Light District in Umaya, but kids are not allowed.
- A lot of Charles de Lint's work, relying as it does on pseudo-Jungian theory being the laws of the universe (which is actually pretty cool) does a lot with this. Most prominently with the character Sophie, who breaks electronics by trying to use them and visits/populates a whole perfectly real dream world in her sleep, although she's in her mid-twenties before she starts to acknowledge the realness. Eventually her boyfriend comes out of dreamland and lives with her. This is considerable dedication, since the relationship started when he came and gave her reward sex for saving him in the form of a crow, and she blamed his existence on a severe need to get laid when she woke up. It's all because her mother was the Moon.
- For extra points, consider that this boyfriend, Jack Crow, who is 'really' a crow, is now coexisting in Newford with the crow-people, who are Native American spirits (sort of) who can turn into various corbae and mostly rent rooms from a big fat guy called Raven. Totally different origins, 'really' crows, same city. They need to meet in a coffee shop sometime, and possibly already have.
- As implied by the title, John C. Wright's War of the Dreaming deals with this. Everness Mansion guards the gates of dreamland. If it is destroyed, humanity will shortly go insane.
- In The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Lord Rhoop is rescued from an island where dreams come true - which seems great to the crew, until Rhoop clarifies that he doesn't mean daydreams. There is a moment where everyone recalls the worst nightmare they ever had, and shortly thereafter they turn around the ship and tear out of there as fast as they can.
- An Elegy for the Still-living: Begins halfway through the first chapter and stays until the end. Environments change in ways tied only the logic of emotions. Characters appear out of nowhere. Buildings talk, giraffes dance and no one bats an eye.
- Michael Marshall Smith's Only Forward uses Jeamland [sic] as a major plot point/setting. The protagonist is a private eye, specialising in clients whose psyches are being poisoned by the denizens of Jeamland.
- Storm Constantine's novel Burying the Shadow involves a realm called the soulscape, which connects all people on a subconscious level. An individual's soulscape reflects their mental and spiritual health.
- In J. R. R. Tolkien's On Fairy-Stories, he criticized the use for fairy tales — at best, it makes a bad frame on an otherwise good work.
- Catherine Webb's Mirror Duet is primarily set in the world of dreams where people from Earth appear when they sleep, seeking their ultimate dream. Each kingdom in this world caters to different dreamer tastes: the main character controls a kingdom which specialises in storms.
- In Julie Kagawa's The Iron Knight, the River of Dreams. It has interesting flotsam and jetsam, and Puck, fishing in it, catches a yellow boot, a turtle that asks for a pocket watch, a catfish that plead I Have a Family, and an annoyed dragon. Given, however, that Nevernever is shaped by human thoughts, it's less of a jolt for them.
- In The Tygrine Cat, the borderlands of Fiåney, the Spirit World, are made of all cats' collective dreams.
- In Malazan Book of the Fallen the sleeping goddess Burn is said to dream reality, so, technically speaking, all of reality in the world where the books take place, is this.
- In the Dreamblood Duology, Ina-Karekh is where people go when dreaming and which also doubles as an afterlife.
- The Fraggles of Fraggle Rock can join each other's dreams by placing their heads in contact and reciting the phrase "dream a dream with me, dream a dream and see" when going to sleep. Although normally just a form of benign dream sharing, it is possible to become trapped in another character's Dreamland.
- Lexx had the Dream Zone, "the time and space from where our consciousness derives." Certain aliens (and at least one human culture) could send their souls there after death, allowing them to visit the living in their dreams.
- Monty Python's Flying Circus subverts this by having a man facing a firing squad being awoken in his bed by his mother. Upon exclaiming "It was only a dream!" his mother tells him that, no, this is the dream, and he really is back in front of the firing squad.
- The 1998 mini-series Oktober is about a powerful pharmaceutical company marketing a drug which has the side-effect of linking people in the 'mass unconsciousness'.
- Henry Danger: In "Dream Busters" Henry is stuck in a dream state and Charlotte has to get him out of it. Henry's dreams are crazy, but Henry doesn't realize he is in a dream, just that he is having the strangest day.
Folklore, Mythology, Occultism, Religion
- In the Jewish mystical system, the Kabballah, Yesod is the sphere of being governed by the Moon, and is the plane of existence immediately above the material Malkuth plane of Earth which is where we abide. Yesod is the plane of insubstantiality, deception, wild imaginings and distracting visions - this is where dreams and nightmares happen when the spirit leaves the body during deep sleep. The task for the explorer is to become aware this is the plane of illusion, and to move beyond it to the higher planes, where genuine insight and wisdom may be gleaned from visions (which we also bring back as dreams, but of a more concrete, substantial and internally coherent sort).
- Dungeons & Dragons:
- An optional plane in the core cosmology is the Region of Dreams, which intelligent creatures routinely visit every time they fall asleep. Dreamers create their own dreamscapes that fade away when they wake up, though the rare lucid dreamers (or spellcasters with the right magic) can exert control over their dreamscapes, or travel to other creatures' dreams. The plane is usually harmless, as "dying" in a dream world only results in a Catapult Nightmare, but anyone who travels bodily to the plane is in real danger from the hazards of the subconscious.
- The Eberron setting has Dal Quor, filled with nightmarish psionic creatures called quori. Peoples' minds go there when they dream, and the Dreaming Dark are quori that learned to do this in reverse. The kalashtar are the descendants of humans who merged with rebel quori long ago to escape the Dreaming Dark. It used to be possible to get there physically, but an ancient race of giants managed to force the dimensions apart with magic. In the aftermath, they descended into savagery.
- The Wall of Color between Deep and Border Ethereal is also the Veil of Sleep. Walking into the thing that resembles an infinite soap bubble wall instead of through it is the only way to visit bodily a dreamscape of whatever world's border is beyond this part of curtain. Not that it's easy, of course.
- Ravenloft has The Nightmare Lands, where reality is mixed with dream stuff so that even the terrain is malleable and masters of nightmares keep little dreamscape cells for the victims they drive nuts with private nightly horror shows.
- In Warhammer 40,000, the Immaterium (or Warp) is an alternate universe comprised of psychic energy and shaped by the emotions and thoughts of sentient lifeforms. The setting being what it is, the Warp is a nightmarish realm of daemons where even benign emotions like courage, hope, perseverance and love fuel the Chaos Gods of slaughter, scheming, plague and excess.
- New World of Darkness:
- Mage: The Awakening contains the Astral Realms, which have three distinct levels. The Oneiros is each individual's personal Mental World. The Tenemos is the Dream World of humanity, containing the sum total of all human knowledge, belief, and experience, albeit shrouded in metaphor, symbolism and subjectivity. Each concept has its own realm, and they are either ruled over by gods (all gods ever beleived in exist in the Tenemos) or archetypes. Travel is made by locating aspects in one realm and moving to another connected to it by word association. It is possible for the realms of ideologies to enforce belief in their ideology upon visitors. Even deeper is the Anima Mundi (also called the Dreamtime), which is essentially the Dream World of the Earth itself. Its entirely inhuman perspective can wash away any unprotected human mind that tries to pass through it. It contains the Earth's perspective on humanity (represented as a vast swath of destruction), nature (which is filled with animal and elemental archetypes; notably, the animal archetypes are devoid of Animal Motifs) and the wider universe (represented as an incomprehensibly large void filled with bizarre objects and beings). All Astral Realms operate on subjective time. The length of real time one spends in the Astral Realms largely depends on the degree to which you interact with them (so, for example, if you merely pass through a desert, it might feel like hours, but in real time, it will take about as long as it takes to say "I pass through the desert").
- Changeling: The Lost has its own dream network, known as the Skein. Word of God says both the Oneiros and the Skein are the same thing, but the differing structure relies on the mindsets of the supernatural types. To the mages, the dreamscape appears an endless tapestry of human thought, whereas to the changelings, it appears a labyrinthine structure of ornate chambers decorated with the dream stuff of a billion sleepers.
- Beast: The Primordial reveals the existence of another aspect of the Astral Dreams in-between the Tenemos and the Anima Mundi, known as the Primordial Dream, which is home to humanity's collective fears. The titular Beasts are people whose soul has been replaced with living Nightmares native of the Primordial Dream, known as Horrors. Each Horror has its own Lair inside this realm, which Beasts can travel to by opening Primordial Pathways.
- fan-supplement Princess: The Hopeful has a dimension named like this literally named the Dreamlands. This one, however, isn't a natural place, but an artificial creation from the Darkness' minions, and was used centuries ago as a Lotus-Eater Machine to trap the majority of the titular Princesses' souls, thus preventing them from reincarnating. Eventually the place evolved into its own things, and the Radiant Queens managed to overthrow its guardians, claiming the Dreamlands as their domain. Nowadays, Princesses can enter the Dreamlands during their sleep and travel safely inside it (with the same Year Inside, Hour Outside rules than the Astral Realm), but sticking there for too long might result in the remains of the Lotus Eater Machine taking effect and gradually altering their memories.
- The Dreaming of Changeling: The Dreaming is a Dream Land created and continuously shaped by the collective imagination and dreams of humanity, the product of the collective unconscious, but it doesn't appear to be a place where dreams play out. That apparently falls to the Dream Zone of Werewolf: The Apocalypse, which contains both individual dream realms and archetypal dream realms, covering the fundamental concepts dreams encompass.
- The Marches of In Nomine are created by the dreams of humans and animals. Angels of Dreams and Demons of Nightmares periodically watch over the sleepers, and the native ethereal spirits are actually dream elements or imaginary figures come to life. The more belief or worship these spirits gather, the more powerful they can become, and some of them actually reached the status of pagan gods back in the day.
- Arkham Horror, being Cthulhu Mythos The Board Game, features the Dreamlands mentioned above as an Other World location to be explored. Like its source material it's a surprisingly "gentle" location compared to, say the Plateau of Leng.
- The small-press RPG Shattered Dreams is all about Dreamland adventures and battling its monsters that prey on dreamers.
- Bliss Stage: The alien invaders hail from the dream realm. The players have to go into a sleep-like state to enter the dream realm to combat the aliens with their ANIMa.
- Franco Dragone's Las Vegas spectacle Le Reve ("The Dream") takes place in a woman's dream. There's plenty of sexuality and surrealism to go around. Dragone used to work for Cirque du Soleil, and his last show for them, La Nouba, is set in an attic where humanity's fairy tale dreams and nightmares coexist. (In part because it was commissioned for Walt Disney World, it's not nearly as suggestive as the latter show.)
- American McGee's Alice takes place in Wonderland, Alice's own dream world. It is very different from the Wonderland we all know.
- A place known as the Dream Realm exists within the Ultima franchise, first appearing in Ultima: Worlds Of Adventure 2: Martian Dreams then appearing again in Ultima Underworld II: Labyrinth of Worlds and Ultima VII Part II: Serpent Isle
- Super Mario Bros.
- Sub-Con in Super Mario Bros. 2, while the ingame plot leaves it ambiguous whether it was an actual place accessed by dream or if it was All Just a Dream in the more mundane sense, the manual, and Japan only Satellaview sequel reveal Subcon is an actual place.
- The Dream World of Mario & Luigi: Dream Team is another an actual place, accessed through Luigi falling asleep on magic pillows that are the petrified bodies of the native Pi'llos. While the exact geography of the Dream World section visited depends on where Luigi falls asleep, it's still depicted as existing independently of the green guy's mind.
- Nightopia in NiGHTS into Dreams....
- The Trope Namer, Dream Land of the Kirby series is a variation. It is home of the Star Rod, which powers a fountain that makes the residents dream. A nightmare once tried to enter the world through the fountain so the Star Rod was removed to keep him away, at the price of no one being able to dream.
- The whole game of Cocoron is a Dream World.
- A stage of Ristar for the Game Gear takes place in Dream Land.
- As does The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening. (In this case, it's an actual world created by a dream of the Wind Fish.)
- Maginaryworld of Sonic Shuffle.
- In The Simpsons arcade game, the family ended up inside Homer's dream, and had to fight a giant bowling ball. Bafflingly, this was the entire premise of another Simpsons' game, Bart's Nightmare.
- The UMN from Xenosaga, which is similar the the Warhammer example as is it the source of Faster-Than-Light Travel & is also their version of the internet.
- Yume Nikki (lit. Dream Journal) is based on a Hikiko Mori girl who spends all her time sleeping then recording her dreams. The game features a vast, sprawling world of surreal dreamscapes, full of very interesting sights. The only real objective is to collect "Effects," which let you do things in your dreams like change your hair, ride a bike, or transform into weird objects. Get it here. Then hide under the bed. This girl has issues.
- The DreamWeb from the eponymous video game is an interesting example, as it subconsciously influences humans in their sleep and thus shapes the future of mankind. Then, someone tries to pervert it for evil purposes...
- As it turns out, in Final Fantasy X, Zanarkand is merely the "dream of the fayth" - when they awaken, it disappears.
- Supposedly, LittleBigPlanet is made from the creative energies of people that are dreaming.
- Keen Dreams, episode 3.5 of the Commander Keen series, takes places entirely inside a dream world.
- Final Fantasy Tactics Advance's Ivalice.
- The entirety of Dare to Dream takes place in the mind of the player's character.
- The Dragon Age series gradually subverts this trope in form of the Fade, a Spirit World where disembodied spirits reside and where the consciousness of every species except dwarves go when asleep. (Dwarves live near lyrium, which has effects on magical abilities and so on. Unruly or dangerous mages are forcibly branded with lyrium, turning them into the Tranquil, which is essentially a magical lobotomy.) It's very...odd. Mages are the only people who can consciously navigate it without having to check on whether they're dreaming or not, though this puts them in danger of being possessed by the many demons that wander the Fade. The subversion sets in as soon as Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening, which begins dismantling the laws of the setting by having a dwarf party member potentially joining the PC on a dream trip to the Fade (which he also acknowledges as normally impossible). By the time of Dragon Age: Inquisition, we have the Inquisitor entering and leaving the Fade in the flesh twice (once with an entire party in tow, potentially including a dwarf again), suggesting that the Fade is not as dreamlike as it seems, and then the Trespasser DLC drops the final bomb by revealing that the Fade is actually a former part of Thedas (the "waking world"), which was cut off from it thousands of years ago by a mage with near-divine powers to seal away the old Elven gods, along with most of the magic and the miracles of the old world.
- The mental worlds in Psychonauts are a bit like this, since a few kids mention that they've been having dreams about things that appear in peoples' heads.
- Silent Hill is implied to be this in some cases.
- Legend of Mana - The entire world of Fa'Diel is believed to be a Dream Land by the Storyteller and the Sproutlings, but the universe itself also has a dream world that the player character can visit on several occasions.
- Final Fantasy VI's dream sequence in which Cyan puts his family's death behind him.
- Sector 4 in Jumper Two takes place in Ogmo's dream, which he fell into while falling.
- The Klonoa series takes place in these.
- Dragon Quest VI is composed of two worlds: the Dream World and the Real World.
- Pokémon Black and White had an added online game feature called the "Dream World", in which asleep Pokémon explore their dreams. It was similar in gameplay to the Pokéwalker, but without the added benefit of getting kids to go play outside. This feature was actually two generations in the making from Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire: In the Devon Corporation building in Rustboro City, there is a scientist who mentions that "I'm attempting a device that lets you see into the dreams of Pokemon!! But it's not going well..." Two generations later, you get to do just this. What's odd about this Dream World is that asleep Pokémon can befriend "Dream Pokémon", and then bring them back into the real world to be part of their trainer's collection. They even have rare alternate special abilities that a real world version of the Pokémon would never be able to obtain otherwise.
- In Rayman Origins the entire world was created by the Bubble Dreamer, a godlike entity that does nothing but sleep. His nightmares are whats causing dangerous things to happen.
- You go through a number of these in Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance. On something of a different note, they're made from the dreams of worlds that have yet to fully awaken following their restoration at the end of the first game. This allows the game to show events in the series' past (King Mickey's adventures as both Yen Sid's apprentice and a musketeer) and revisit the Pinocchio storyline. Sora is confused when Jiminy Cricket doesn't recognize him, then remembers this is that world's dream of Jiminy.
- Psychosomnium is set in Jimmy's dream, explaining the short, disjointed "plot" and the Gainax Ending.
- LSD: Dream Emulator.
- Spyro the Dragon has the Dream Weavers world, which is home to a race of dragons that keep dreams pleasant and nightmares in check. The world itself is quite nonsensical, featuring castles floating in the sky along with a variety of bizarre enemies.
- Rift has the Plane of Water.
- MOTHER and it's sequel EarthBound have Magicant.
- Radia Senki Reimeihen has Lemuria, the setting of the game.
- Bloodborne has the real...ish world where Yharnam is located and the Hunter's Dream, a safe Pocket Dimension created from the dreams of the Moon Presence, an Eldritch Abomination exterminating its fellow horrors and their spawn by means of its pet human Hunters. Hunters are humans injected with Old Blood, giving them, among other things, an ability to "awaken" from Yharnam to the Hunter's Dream and back. Later in the game, you also visit another dream world, the Nightmare of Mensis, as well as the Hunter's Nightmare in the DLC, suggesting that there are innumerable worlds created from the dreams of powerful beings, or even that Yharnam itself is just such a dream.
- The Fairly Oddparents: Shadow Showdown has "Dad's Dream". Three guesses on where the level takes place.
- Fallen London: Known as Parabola, and usually resembling something like a Hungry Jungle most of the time (littered with upright, frameless mirrors embedded into the ground if you're in the Mirror-Marches side of it), it can be accessed through Prisoner's Honey, mirrors (if you're skilled enough), and having recurring nightmares so horrendous and vivid you kinda stumble into it by accident. It's a fairly dangerous place to be in outside certain circumstances, but some make a killing exploring it, and making deals with its rulers, the Fingerkings.
- In Dreamfall: The Longest Journey, powerful Dreamers can create entire worlds lodged between Stark and Arcadia, wherein they are the Domain Holders, such as Faith's Winter. Dreamfall Chapters then reveals that the entire universe of The Longest Journey is a dream of the primordial being known as Lux the First Dreamer, whose power Zoë, another powerful Dreamer, briefly borrows during the finale of Chapters to deal with the Prophet's conspiracy.
- In Tsukihime, Kagetsu Tohya. The story is only focused around Shiki and only appears to encompass the town he lives in, plus the next one over. However, it's revealed that actually, all the people he meets are indeed 'real' in a sense. They can give him information he needs to figure out what's going on and will also realize the oddness of the repeating days in their own ways. The dream he's in also mixes all the different Tsukihime continuities heavily, though Shiki does not notice.
- In War: 13th Day, you come to realize that you and two other narrators are trapped in a dream. However, the ending reveals there's much, much more to it than that...
- The Dreamland Chronicles is about a Dreamland all children go to when they sleep. Usually, they outgrow it after a few years, and can no longer access it as adults.
- The Dreamcatchers Masquerade takes place in a dream world of sorts where "dreams" grow on trees and nightmare creatures roam the night.
- Dresden Codak does this twice. Sorta. The first time it took place in a graveyard of civilization. The second time, it took place in an individual's subconscious.
- Luminous Ages is based in a universe which started as a dream instead of a bang.
- Of course, prior to the Hob storyline, most of the comic had this feel to it, even if it wasn't technically taking place in a dream or a comparable plane of existence.
- YU+ME: dream has elements of this, if the name didn't tip you off. Fiona starts out as someone who hates life so much that she dreams constantly, though these turn out to be a version of Dream Within a Dream. We come back to Dreamland concepts as Fiona wakes up from her coma and subsequently goes back to find Lia.
- The Dreamer is an interesting play on this, as Bea's dreams don't take place in anywhere magical; they take place in the American Revolution!
- Wooden Rose. Which doesn't mean it's not real
- In End Of Infinity, Phantasmagoria is the world that dreamers go to when they're asleep. By taking off their Placidus mask, they can become Lucid Dreamers and interact directly with the Phantasmagorians, permanent residents of the dream world. Otherwise, they are Placid Dreamers, who experience Phantasmagoria as an ordinary dream.
- MS Paint Adventures
- Problem Sleuth has the imaginary universe which can be accessed by playing make-believe in a fort or by climbing through fake windows. It is later revealed that Jailbreak and Bard Quest also take place there.
- The story seems to use this setting early on, with Jade dreaming that she lives in a beautiful tower on a golden moon. It doesn't take long until it's established that said dream lands, Prospit and Derse, are just another part of the physical plane in which Sburb takes place, primarily accessed in the players' sleep through their dream selves.
- A straighter example would be the Dream Bubbles, which float through the Outer Ring and are “glubbed” into existence by the Horrorterrors. They’re where players’ dreams take place when their dream self (or their regular self, either or) is dead. They were originally ephemeral and unstable, exposing dreamers to the highly unpleasant effects of the Outer Ring and its denizens, until Feferi convinced the Horrorterrors to make permanent ones. The final product results in shared dream dimension that is constantly shifting appearance as dreamers recall and dismiss memories and as bubbles, carrying their passengers with them, merge and split, resulting in pretty surreal and patchwork landscapes as places and things from many different worlds end up side by side. They also double as the afterlife, with the souls of dead characters remaining there permanently but still able to interact with living dreamers. As the Ring exists outside universes and thus causality, the dead from all possible timelines end up together, making the Bubbles fairly crowded.
- In Sinfest, where the cat and dog meet while dreaming.
- In Our Little Adventure, Julie usually goes to hazy orange and yellow one when her mind meets up with The Palm Tree Ghost. In this one we get to see some of the background, though it's still hazy. It's turning out to be surreal and seuss-like.
- In Nwain: The Knight Who Wandered Dream, the titular Knight Errant roams a world called Dream.
- Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends has its own version of this trope; in the special, Destination Imagination, the characters go on an adventure through an entire imaginary world created by a kid and controlled by the childish imaginary friend inside.
- Imaginationland from the South Park episode of the same name.
- The cartoon Somewhere in Dreamland is pretty much what you'd expect.
- In Adventures in Care-a-Lot, all the Care Bears' dreams occur in one connected dreamland that looks just like Care-a-Lot. Accordingly, they tend to dream about doing the same things they do when they're awake.
- Cloudcuckooland from Jamie and the Magic Torch.
- The titular setting from Captain Zed And The Zee Zone.
- The setting of Potsworth & Company.
- Oddly averted, however, in The Dreamstone, in which "The Land of Dreams" is an ordinary country so named because its inhabitants have good dreams, which we rarely actually see. Played straight in one of these rare instances however, where the villains end up travelling into the dreams to sabotage them (with the heroes pursuing shortly after). While it is unknown if the dreams are connected in any form, they seem to have a recurring theme, consisting of fairground rides and gimmicks. Daydream bubbles are also made for the purpose of entering and interacting with the contents of dreams.
- Phineas and Ferb's Isabella has her own version of Dreamland, Phineasland. Which is a very strange place to be, considering that, after having confessed his undying love to her, Phineas turned into a centaur, had Isabella sit on him and started levitating, with a rainbow rising behind them. But then of course everything goes back to normal.
- In an episode of Gargoyles, Goliath and former Pack member Dingo are put into a trance and sent into the "Dreamtime", in order to stop the Matrix from covering the world. In this world, they have control, allowing them to create weapons out of thin air.
- The episode "King Worm" of Adventure Time uses this trope to its trippy potential.
- The Superjail!! episode "Dream Machine" is even trippier. But then again, it IS Superjail...
- Greg has one in "Over the Garden Wall" that is full of cute cartoon characters.