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Author Topic: 2014/10: Clock Tower (J) (Super NES) - TerraEsperZ  (Read 2976 times)
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JonLeung
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« on: September 30, 2014, 07:07:48 PM »


For this month's "Maps Of The Month" featurette, I wish to draw your attention to TerraEsperZ's Clock Tower (J) (Super NES) maps.

One of the first survival horror adventures on a game console, even predating Resident Evil, is Clock Tower (J) on the Super Famicom.  Four orphan girls are adopted by the wealthy but reclusive Mr. Barrows.  After arriving at the Barrows Mansion, they find their lives threatened as they are stalked by a deformed boy with a large pair of scissors and murderous intent.  You play as Jennifer, who must evade the Scissorman, find her friends and save them (if possible) and escape the mansion.  With multiple endings, you might want to experience this horror more than once...

The Barrows Mansion is definitely a creepy place, and somewhat large.  With a number of doors and some similar-looking hallways it can be easy to get lost.  What makes it interesting - but potentially more confusing - is that some rooms may be swapped around with each playthrough.  TerraEsperZ has done a great job at laying it all out, so when the Scissorman attacks, your chance of survival is better.  Or at the very least, you can plan efficient routes to end the nightmare as soon as possible.  Thanks, TerraEsperZ!  Interestingly, despite being among the most honoured mapmakers on VGMaps, this map is TerraEsperZ's first (and currently only) submission for the Super NES atlas.

So to recognize the courage in surveying (and surviving) the Barrows Mansion, TerraEsperZ's Clock Tower (J) (Super NES) maps will be known as VGMaps.com's Maps Of The Month for October 2014.
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TerraEsperZ
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« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2014, 08:24:24 PM »

Thanks a lot for this honour!

Let me begin by saying that this game was quite a challenge to map!

First of all, the Barrows Mansion is relatively big and quite three-dimensional, not to mention a bit Escheresque with regards to the West Wing and the hallway doors essentially being on the wrong wall. It was a challenge for me to decide how to assemble everything, where the connecting lines would go and how the whole thing had to be easily readable while not being too cluttered. I think I did okay but if I'd had a more powerful computer, I think I would have placed the rooms farther apart and the connections between rooms more visible.

Second of all, this game features a certain amount of randomness in several respects and it hasn't been that well documented. The various FAQs and walkthroughs online were rarely complete or that comprehensive and it was long and difficult to play the game enough time to encounter every possible outcome. As a result, I wasn't able to accomplish all of my goals with this game, namely to make separate versions of the map featuring first all the possible "danger" and "safety" spots, and another one featuring a comprehensive walkthroughs of the game detailing all the puzzles and their variations as well as all the ways you can influence which ending you achieve. Sadly, that would have necessitated far more work and formatting than I was capable of to make the whole thing work as a visual guide to the game.

I'm still happy with the final result, but I can't say I'm not disappointed that I wasn't able to achieve all I set out to do.
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Current project that I really should try to finish:
-Drill Dozer (GBA)
-Sonic 3D Blast (Genesis)
-Naya's Quest (PC)
-Lilly Looking Through (PC)

Pending project:
-A ton of stuff that will never be finished
JonLeung
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« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2014, 08:07:08 AM »

Forever the perfectionist, it's not surprising to hear you say that you know of ways it can be even better - and you are always welcome to update it if you do ever decide or are able to do so...but I can say that as a visual guide, as it is, it has already been helpful.  I can personally attest to this.

Last Hallowe'en I made a point of making time to play Clock Tower.  Of course I always have too many current games to play and too many older games to take on as well, but I'd heard of Clock Tower for quite a while and your map compelled me to make the effort to at least give it a go on Hallowe'en evening.  Perhaps having your full map available took away some of the mystery and fear, and Bobby the Scissor Man only had time to attack me twice (excluding the final confrontation), but, not that it's the best excuse, I wanted to play it in one sitting and get at least one decent ending within that Hallowe'en evening/night instead of spending much of that time wandering in and out of rooms.  Jennifer isn't exactly quick on her feet so that would feel more like wasting time than any sort of meaningful experience.  Or maybe I just have a short attention span and limited patience...

I got the best ending on the first and only try, and I'm sure a lot of it has to do with your map.  I did die a few times along the way, however it was not by Scissor Man, but by the stupid bird...

Anyway, I probably wouldn't have really made time to play this game in the first place if not for the map, let alone getting through it, with the best ending to boot, so if anything, it has at least been of benefit to me.  Thanks!
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