A cult classic that is one of the earliest examples of the modern Survival Horror genre.
Known as Clock Tower 2 in Japan, North America’s Clock Tower picks up where the original CT (Japanese exclusive) leaves off with a group of people trying to figure out what the hell happened in the first game.
Clock Tower is an interesting specimen for the PlayStation 1. It is a rigid Point-and-Click adventure complete with a mouse icon on the screen to direct your characters and investigate your surroundings. It takes a little getting used to if you are not familiar with P&C gameplay but it works well enough. It’s not going to blow your hair back by any stretch but it gets the job done.
The game starts at a very slow pace letting players catch up on the past events (a psycho killer with a gigantic pair of shears tried to kill everybody). It seems that this slow pace was polarizing for a lot of gamers and reviewers, especially at the time it came out (1996/1997). Slow paced, cinematic video games were still years away from becoming mainstream but I personally enjoyed it. To me it felt a little bit like a seventies horror film. Dry, understated but uneasy. You make your way around Oslo, traveling from different points of interest talking to the rest of the characters. The pace does well to set the tone of the game.
The game itself is a point and click exploration game essentially with the random appearance of the relentless psycho, Scissorman chasing you throughout the level.
Scissorman is some tiny shit head with a huge pair of scissors. He walks around with a fake limp, is apparently immortal and all in all makes your life a living hell. To escape the Scissorman you usually have to run into a room with a closet or a bathroom stall to hide from him. You can fight him but it always comes at a cost of health. Fighting him more than twice will usually end with you getting chopped in half.
The sound and music is great despite the horrendous voice acting. The graphics hold up quite well for a game that is nearly thirty years old as well but for its +$200 price tag on most websites like eBay and Amazon it’s hard to justify a purchase. Especially considering despite multiple scenarios and endings the game’s story takes about 3 1/2 hours to see everything. It’s a short and interesting pioneer of the Survival Horror genre that will only find real love with FMV/Point and Click and Survival Horror fanatics.