One of Japanese horror's most influential games is getting a remaster and its first official English translation

Clock Tower is a game developed by the now-defunct Human Co. and released in Japan for the Super Famicom in 1995. Directed by Hifumi Kono (Steel Battalion, Infinite Space), the game is a point-and-click adventure with a survival horror theme, with the player exploring a mansion as a young girl named Jennifer while being stalked by the deadly Scissorman. It is sometimes grotesque, always scary, and came to be a big influence on Japanese horror games.

It sold well enough to get a director's cut a year later and spawn several sequels, but Clock Tower never released outside Japan (though there are fan translations). Now Limited Run Games, which has been on a real hot streak of reviving classic games lately, has announced that in collaboration with developer WayForward the game is being re-released as a "reprint" with new elements.

"Clock Tower in particular is a game that I discovered when I was probably about 16, and it holds a really special place in my heart because at the time it was the scariest thing I had ever played," says Mariel Cartwright, creative lead on the new version.

Cartwright goes on to point out that many other horror games give you weapons or tools to fight back, but that's not the case here. "It is true survival horror, you can only survive, and I think it is a game that has that quieter tension."

This Clock Tower is being localised into five languages, including English, while the new elements mentioned include "improved operability and additional animations" as well as "opening videos, new theme songs, additional cutscenes, video galleries" and more. The port-slash-remaster is being developed by WayForward, though former Clock Tower series publishers Capcom and Sunsoft also have their logos appear at the end of the trailer. It's due for release in early 2024.

Rich Stanton

Rich is a games journalist with 15 years' experience, beginning his career on Edge magazine before working for a wide range of outlets, including Ars Technica, Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, Gamespot, the Guardian, IGN, the New Statesman, Polygon, and Vice. He was the editor of Kotaku UK, the UK arm of Kotaku, for three years before joining PC Gamer. He is the author of a Brief History of Video Games, a full history of the medium, which the Midwest Book Review described as "[a] must-read for serious minded game historians and curious video game connoisseurs alike."