This game you are playing in the dream can be similar to how you feel about life. Perhaps you are fighting to keep alive through the loss of your loved ones. Life can feel as though it is a game. Life can be taken so easily. The ticks are parasites. They can represent things in this world that suck the life out of you. So perhaps you trying to rid these "parasites" from your life, but it feels as though it is never ending. If you have any more questions feel free to ask.