The Night Of The Scissors: Scissorman Reimagined
Going into The Night of the Scissors, the name alone brought memories rushing back from the old point and click turned Resident Evil clone, at least in the latest entry, Clock Tower, because of its main villain Scissorman. While different in each iteration of the series, he is always portrayed the same. A regular ass guy with the biggest pair of scissors you’ve seen who chases you down and brings a horrible end to your night. Finding joy in that series and even the creator’s spiritual successor, Night Cry. I had to jump in just based on the idea of being able to run away from a man with scissors. Adopting a VHS visual style, The Night of the Scissors had a lot of things going for it to start.
Story-wise is where Night of the Scissors really shines. Starting as a simple breaking and entering, we follow Adam and Kevin, trying to find some old stuff to sell from an old abandoned post office. Kevin decides to keep watch while Adam scopes the place out.
Almost immediately upon entering the abandoned office, it is clear this is not a safe place, besides the fact that it is pitch black except for Adams’s light. What could be best described as viscera strewn about with messages written on the walls in what looks like blood, weird cardboard cutouts of people, and notes about some crazy guy with giant scissors called the Snipper.
Night of the Scissors sets a mood, slowly letting you explore this run-down post office, giving you tutorials about pausing by hitting escape UNLESS you are not safe. Then when you go to try it out immediately after learning this in the corner, it just reads, “Not safe, cant pause.” It keeps doing these small things to build up this tension. Finally, it starts twisting this already dark and gritty abandoned post office by leading the player to come across body parts in toilets and a corner described as “ Someone got cornered and dismembered in this room.”
When things start to mess with you, things get really interesting. It effectively uses its jumpscares to push you deeper into the madness and as you learn more about the Snipper. He will show up and chase you. When the sounds of scissors are around, you know, it’s time to run. If you go to a first-person point of view for Adam, the Snipper will obliterate him with giant scissors. While the story starts out pretty simple, it all culminates in a twist ending that I was not expecting and not ready for. However, I will leave what the twist is out because you need to play through Night of the Scissors for it to have an impact.
The sound design is pretty on point here, having ZERO score to it, slowly building these creepy noises as the Snipper draws closer. Mixing that fact with the old-school survival horror-style gameplay from the early nineties like Resident Evil and Silent Hill minus the fighting tank controls and obscure puzzles is plenty. While this is your hide and seek version of a horror game, it works with its runtime of around thirty minutes, something this style dragged out over a few hours experience can become old fast. But between its shorter runtime and the Snipper isn’t overly eager and in your face constantly, it felt like a perfect balance.
Overall, Night of the Scissors did not disappoint. Short, sweet, and to the point, it does an effective job of building a lot of tension. When we see the Snipper, he is scary and violent, so he is everything we need. I am excited to see Selewi’s next. Check out their Twitter and head over to itch.io to download and play Night of the Scissors.