NightCry (previously known as Project Scissors) is a survival horror game and Clock Tower spiritual successor developed by Nude Maker for PC to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Clock Tower: The First Fear. The PC version was released on March 29, 2016 and it is available on Steam.
It was claimed that it would also be released for PlayStation Vita, iOS and Android. However, release dates for these versions of the game were not announced. According to an update in June of last year, the Vita/iOS/Android versions are not cancelled and are still in development. A September 2017 update reiterates this.
NightCry is directed by series original Hifumi Kono who had complete control over the first two Clock Tower installments. Masahiro Ito (Silent Hill art and monster director) designed Scissorwalker. Takashi Shimizu directed a live-action teaser trailer for the game.
- Note: This plot summary follows the Two Survivors ending. However, it is unknown if Two Survivors is the canon ending.
The game is set aboard a luxurious cruise liner called the Oceanus on August 18, 2016. This cruise begins from Venezia, Italy, making a stop at Southampton, England, then finally crossing the Atlantic en route for the Caribbean Islands (which are near Florida).
The heroine and her friends are college students from North America that had fieldwork training in the Aegean islands, making their trip back on this cruise liner. However, a group of cultists, simply known as "the Faithful", sneaked on board.
As the ship sails across the deep blue ocean, a week into the cruise, a series of gruesome and mysterious murders begins to take place by a monstrous female creature called Scissorwalker, including those of the ship's crew. Soon the ocean liner is crippled and adrift at sea, and has become an inescapable death trap for the passengers.
As Monica Flores, Leonard Cosgrove and Rooney Simpson, passengers of the ship, the player is tasked with solving the murder mystery to ensure their own survival as well as the rest of the ‘innocent’ passengers.
There are supernatural elements present in the story.
- 7:26 PM
Chapter One begins with Monica on the Oceanus, leaving the party on board. While looking for her friend Harry, she helps the owner of the ship, Vigo Boradsov, by boiling his artificial eye and also encounters a strange little girl named Connie.
Soon, Monica encounters the Scissorwalker after Scissorwalker kills Harry by pulling him into a vending machine. Monica then tries to escape the ship. Her friends Kelly Butler and Jessica Lopez also go missing.
Monica becomes stranded on the bottom deck, but locates a smartphone belonging to a "John Thompson". John's wife, Angie Brown, communicates with Monica and she is able to unlock his briefcase, finding a fuse that restores power to the elevator. In order to receive the best ending, Monica must find a wedding ring, send a HELP message using the phone, and find Jessica's corpse.
On the upper floor of the ship's cafe, Monica reunites with a clerk named Eric and they vow to escape.
- 9:44 PM
Chapter Two features Leonard as he leaves the Oceanus and explores a nearby island to investigate a bonfire in the distance with Eric and Cobie, crew members of the Oceanus. Fortunately, in this chapter, Leonard does not have to worry about Scissorwalker (excluding one alternate ending), but he does have to be concerned about being discovered by the Faithful.
On the island, Leonard sends a distress message requesting help on the Oceanus. Soon, he discovers a mass-murdering cult preparing a ritual there, who appear to be rehearsing to perform a ritual on board the ship.
Leonard discovers that one of the high-ranking members of the cult probably has a false eye and sends a text to his students warning them of this development. Later, he finds a secret chamber under a well, where he finds a heavily injured and drugged Jerome Theuriau in a coffin, who was abducted and tortured. Leonard also learned that the Oceanus was going to be used as the site for an arcane ritual.
When he returned to the beach carrying Jerome on his back, he, Eric and Cobie proceeded to try and hurry back to the ship. Unfortunately, when they returned to the ship, an explosion went off from the inside the ship. Leonard looked towards the source of it in shock and quickly turned around to tell the men to hurry up, but was caught off-guard and attacked by an unknown Faithful member. However, it is implied that this member is Eric or Cobie (most likely Eric), since Jerome is shirtless and the member appears to be wearing a crew uniform.
- 6:12 PM
Chapter Three features Rooney as she explores the Oceanus. This is the longest chapter and follows through to the rest of night.
It begins with Rooney mingling at the same party as Monica. While watching the ocean, Rooney has a suicidal urge to fall in and drown herself, but is prevented by Jerome who empathizes with her and talks to her about suicidal ideations. Jerome persuades her to meet in his room.
There, Rooney and Jerome talk about what's real and existence. Jerome decides to go get some food, but suddenly, Scissorwalker emerges from the bathroom and begins stalking Rooney. Rooney successfully hides from Scissorwalker and finds a group of survivors in a room. She also encounters Jerome on a staircase.
In the storage area, Rooney finds a wounded Monica hiding in a storage container, who somehow became trapped in after something locked her in from behind. If Monica received John's wedding ring from Chapter One, she will pass it onto Rooney. Elsewhere in the storage area, Eric tells Rooney that she can climb through the air ducts to escape. Unfortunately, Cobie already drowned. Eric provides Rooney with some antibiotics and in the true ending, both Rooney and Monica take them. While climbing through the air ducts, Maria Ortiz is killed by Scissorwalker.
Rooney later finds Leonard in a tub of liquid in the infirmary room and discovers that his body had been flayed from the neck down. He has been kept alive, but is trapped in agonizing pain, to the extent that he can only beg for death. Rooney ultimately heeds his request by shutting off his life support machine and euthanizing him. Connie appears, exclaiming happily that Rooney had killed him. She then asked her how it feels to kill someone. However, when Rooney ignores her and starts to leave, Connie tried to call Rooney out by pointing out how Leonard was like a father to her. This prompted Rooney to stand up to her and reveal what happened on the day Connie died, stunning her. Connie angrily threw a tantrum and accused her of lying. Rooney then told her that she didn't intend for her to forgive her and declared that she will go on with her life. Rooney then left the room, leaving an angry and stunned Connie behind.
Later, Rooney finds Angie hiding in a clothes store and Rooney gives her John's wedding ring. In response, she gives her a billiard ball which is a clue to enter the VIP area. In the VIP area, Rooney enters Vigo's room and finds a childhood photo of Jerome, a diary revealing the truth of Scissorwalker, and obtains the Eye of the Kassites.
Rooney enters the dance hall and sees the stringed up corpses of the passengers. Vigo applauds Rooney for surviving this far, and a masked Jerome subdues Rooney. Fortunately, Monica bashes Jerome in the head, knocking him unconscious. Rooney tears out her own eye and replaces it with the Eye of the Kassites, allowing her to command the Scissorwalker to take revenge "on the man who turned you into a monster". The Scissorwalker kills Vigo, then disappears, and the two are rescued by helicopter.
There are eight multiple endings in total. It is unknown which ending is canon or if there is a canon ending.
- Two Survivors: Rooney and Monica encounter Vigo, who commands the Scissorwalker to attack them. Rooney tears out her own eye and replaces it with the Eye of the Kassites, allowing her to command the Scissorwalker to take revenge "on the man who turned you into a monster". The Scissorwalker kills Vigo, then disappears, and the two are rescued by helicopter.
- Trap Party: Triggered if Rooney does not read Vigo's diary or see Jerome's past photo. Rather than encountering Vigo, Rooney is surrounded by the Faithful and wakes up in a hospital bed (possibly the one in the medical bay she went through), with Jerome standing nearby. He tells her she is in a hospital bed in Miami, they have been rescued, and it's all over. The ending fades ominously as he says "You have nothing to worry about..."
- Purgatory: Triggered if Rooney fails to take the antibiotic Eric gives her (and thus to give it to Monica). Rooney collapses inside the ship's hospital. She is later walking down the corridors of the Oceanus, bloodied and emotionless, passing the old lady from the elevator as well as Monica. She stops in front of Connie, who says "Now we can play together forever..." as she raises her hat.
- Pre-established harmony: Triggered if the wedding ring is not found and given to Angie in the clothing store. When Rooney approaches the Billard Puzzle door, Vigo is standing outside the door, and blasts her with sleeping gas. The same sequence as Purgatory plays, but with a brief view of the Scissorwalker seen at the end.
- The lone survivor: Triggered if Rooney fails to use the Eye of the Kassites (or doesn't have it). Rooney and Monica are killed by the Scissorwalker. Similar to Two Survivors, but instead of Rooney and Monica standing on deck, there is now Eric.
- Seduced by the snake: Triggered if Rooney refuses to turn off the life-support machine. Rooney enters the staff elevator after crossing the partially destroyed corridor, only to see something slithering around her. Leonard's head appears, and he coils around Rooney, telling her they will be together forever.
- It's all too late: Triggered automatically if Monica fails to find Jessica's corpse back in Chapter One. When Leonard enters the well without using the non-slip gloves, he falls and is killed by the Scissorwalker. If he does use the gloves and follows through with the rest of the chapter, it continues normally until Leonard is ambushed on the life raft. A week later, a newscast reports how everybody on the Oceanus disappeared and that there are no clues to this mystery.
- A Face In The Waves: Triggered if Monica fails to send a SNS message in Chapter One. When Monica comes out of the storage room onto the deck, rather than the single crewman Eric, she is confronted by the Faithful, who throw her overboard. A large image of the Scissorwalker appears in the water.
- Life is fleeting, isn't it? Perhaps as you witness the moment the torch is blown out and the light fades, you will be able to taste the relief of knowing you yourself are still safe...
These endings occur in special circumstances and have their own animations. There are 25 of them, and getting them all earns an achievement.
|List of game overs|
- This is a collection of the horrors you will experience aboard the cruise liner. If by some miracle you do not run into these, you are certain to lead a happier life.
Getting all 11 of them counts as an achievement.
|List of horrors|
The game uses a point and click interface like the earlier Clock Tower games and currently does not have any controller support for movement, but the player can map controller buttons to some actions such as clicking, running, flashlight, etc.
If the player wishes to always run, they can also map the "Pick" and "Dash" controls to the same control (left click) - this makes it so that the player simply has to single click instead of double click all the time, and there isn't a single moment of the game where walking is necessary.
- P pauses the game.
- Spacebar skips cutscenes.
- Escape returns to the title screen.
While in exploration mode, the player explores the cruise and investigates the strange and gruesome happenings. Players click on objects in the environment to investigate and obtain items, helping to solve puzzles and gain more clues. It is important to note that there are several moments in the game where the player must examine something two or three times in order to progress.
The player will also encounter other cruise ship guests and the crew during the investigation. Talking to them can reveal new information, and some can even prove essential to surviving through the nightmare. Interactions with other survivors are important branching points in the game. Surviving characters with certain knowledge or skills will be important in driving the storyline, which uses a flow chart system.
Middle click is run and right click is cancel.
The player is equipped with a smartphone which uses a fictional social media service called "SnapNPost" (or SNP). At some points in the game, they must use it to call survivors and make texts. They can also receive calls back from other survivors. Social media posts occasionally provide clues to puzzles.
The player can save their game with two ways: The first way is via checkpoints, however, the game does not tell the player when these checkpoints occur. The second way is by charging their phone at certain areas, so searching for phone chargers is essential. The player must select the smartphone icon and click the charger, simply examining the charger won't work.
The phone can also serve as a flashlight to find hidden items in the dark.
While in escape mode, the player is being stalked by Scissorwalker. With no weapons, the player can only run to an evasion place such as a fire extinguisher, or hide in a hiding place such a closet in order to survive these encounters until Scissorwalker leaves. While hiding, the player must keep the mouse cursor in a heart icon.
The game does not feature a traditional panic system - instead, it uses a stamina system. The lower the player's stamina, the more clicks are required for escaping a struggle with Scissorwalker. Double click is run, middle click is full sprint, and right click allows the player to glance back at Scissorwalker to see how far she is away. However, sprinting uses a large amount of stamina and the player may exhaust themselves and fall to the floor, in which they are prone to being killed. Because of this, it is recommended to only sprint when necessary.
The game uses a flow chart to keep track of progress and the factors which determine the multiple endings.
If the player wants to load their save, they must click "continue" - if they click the flow chart, then they will have to re-do that specific section.
The music was composed by by Nobuko Toda, known for her work on the Metal Gear Solid series and Halo 4, and industry veteran Michiru Yamane, most famous for the gothic music she provided for games like Castlevania: Bloodlines and Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. The 25-piece soundtrack was released digitally with the game's release.
NightCry (originally announced as Project Scissors) was originally only in development for mobile devices (Android, iOS, Vita), due to the project's limited budget, with a fall 2015 release date set.
After fans left continuous feedback expressing their dissatisfaction with the lack of a PC version, Hifumi Kono launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund an upscaled port with dynamic lighting and better graphics, pushing the release date to December 2015. The PC version of NightCry was officially funded on the final day of the Kickstarter campaign. In addition, the Kickstarter campaign stretch goals list revealed the possibility of releasing the game on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 as well, but not enough funds were met.
The game was delayed to March 29, 2016 for PC. Release dates for the Android, iOS and Vita versions are yet to be announced.
The PC version currently has mixed reviews on Steam. Reviews are typically in the 4-7 range out of 10 (or higher than 7 if the player is generous). For the most part, it's enjoyable, but players should definitely not go into NightCry expecting Clock Tower 4 or Haunting Ground 2, or even Until Dawn. It should be noted that the game was originally intended to be mobile-only game.
On the positive side:
- Many players enjoy the atmosphere.
- It is clear that some amount of effort was put into it, and it shows in some areas.
- It is generally agreed that the game has an interesting story premise.
- The audio design is generally well done.
On the so-so side:
- Graphics are average. Some environments in the game look good - others occasionally seem to have some odd lighting, poor textures, odd shadows, odd physics, etc.
- Animations are average.
- Voice acting (when there is voice acting) is average.
- The story isn't as fleshed out as it could be, and can feel like a standard run-of-the-mill B-horror tropey slasher movie. It can also feel cheesy, silly and campy at times. While the story does contain some emotional depth, mainly with Rooney, it may also leave a lot to be desired if a player cares about deep and complex storylines. In the end, the story is explained by some vague references to Babylonian Kassites. The story is definitely not a masterpiece, and it also contains plot holes. Perhaps the most ridiculous part of the story is when Rooney decides to rip out her own eyeball with her own hands (despite no indication that the eye had to be in the socket, or that the eye would even control Scissorwalker), instead of simply trying to hold the Eye of the Kassites in front of her eye.
On the negative side:
- Many players feel the point-and-click controls are poor, awkward, janky, inaccurate and unresponsive. NightCry is probably a good example of why developers should avoid point-and-click controls in 3D environments with constantly changing camera angles.
- Many players report bugs, crashing and poor optimization, citing it lacks technical polish.
- Many dialog scenes in the game are also unvoiced and sometimes, characters speak with their lips and mouths closed the entire time.
- Asides from multiple endings, there aren't any unlockables. No weapons, extra costumes, hard mode, movie gallery, sound test, etc. The game can feel like a very base and minimalistic experience, especially compared to the amount of unlockables Haunting Ground has. The player can aim to earn all the endings, horrors, game overs and achievements, but that's about it.
- Scissorwalker only appears at certain scripted points, such as if Monica examines a certain freezer, or if Rooney walks up a certain staircase. There will never be a single time in the game where waiting in a room too long will summon Scissorwalker, and it lacks the urgency and constant dread of previous games in the series where stalkers could appear anytime randomly.
The developers currently released seven patches to polish the technical side of the game. It is unknown if there will be any future patches, although it is unlikely considering the amount of time since the last one.
|List of patches|
- Some Kickstarter backers allowed themselves to be used as NPC models.
- The game contains English and Japanese dual audio.
- The cruise liner featured in the game shares its name with one of the twelve Titans of Greek mythology who is considered to be a sea god or the personification of the sea.
- There was also a real French-built and Greek-owned cruise liner similarly named Oceanos that sank in 1991 after taking on water during a storm. The captain and most of the crew fled the ship without alerting the passengers to the danger.
- The game is developed in Unity engine.
- After 17 years, it is the only game to be fully created and directed by the series' creator, Hifumi Kono, after the release of Clock Tower.
- Chris Darril, developer of Remothered, created concept art and in-game art.
- Barry Gjerde, known for his roles as Barry Burton in the original Resident Evil and Rick in Clock Tower, has a large role in NightCry as the owner of the ship named Vigo Boradsov.
- Vigo's diary towards the end of the game refers to Babylon The Great, also known as the Whore Of Babylon, "the Mother of Harlots and Abominitions of the Earth" as referred to in the book of Revelation. However, the book later states that this person is a metaphorical representation of an empire or city.
- Petrarch's "Trionfi", or Petrarch's Triumphs, is a series of poems written in Italian each related to a particular concept. Beginning with Love, each concept is "defeated" by the next: Love by Chastity, Chastity by Death, Death by Fame, Fame by Time, and Time by Eternity.
- The game could've received an extra chapter and character (possibly Jerome) if the game reached its additional stretch goal, but it was never met.
- NightCry on Steam (PC)
- NightCry on PCGamingWiki
- General information and walkthrough