|Platform Reviewed||Sega Saturn|
|Genre||Arcade Platform Action Game|
|Number of Players||1|
|Skills Required||Hand-Eye Coordination|
|Interface Devices||Sega Saturn Joypad|
|Game Design and Playability||Very Good|
|Type Of Fun||Run, Jump, Collect, Attack, Avoid|
|Replay Value||Low to Moderate|
|The Best||Astounding graphics and effects, fully rendered characters, good cinema and sound.|
|The Worst||Limited actions and no save feature, some attacks can be tough to pull off.|
|How much would I be willing to pay for this||45 Bucks|
Clockwork Knight, and it's sequel (available as an import from Japan), are standard side-scrolling platform action games, in the mold of Mario or Sonic and countless others. Play includes the usual jumping, running, fighting, collecting, and beating Bosses.
Before the release of Toy Story, Clockwork Knight explored the concept of toys having a secret life of their own, and in Clockwork Knight the player is cast as Pepperouchau, a wind-up mechanical toy knight on a quest to rescue his own Quixotic damsel-in-distress, Chelsea the porcelain clock figurine. Chelsea is stolen away by a mysterious and magical entity that turns all the other toys against poor Pepperouchau.
Clockwork Knight, and it's even more impressive sequel (which hopefully will be released here in America, but is available through import companies) certainly impresses the player immediately with some truly inspired visual effects. Essentially a Sonic, Donkey Kong Country, or Mario style game, Clockwork Knight creates a side scrolling universe that is nonetheless rendered in full three-dimensional space. The effect is nothing less than striking, and captivates anyone who sees it. The game is solidly programmed, and done with a certain obvious heart to it as well. It is an interesting coincidence to see this toy-based game upstage and precede the current release (1995) of Disney / Pixar's Toy Story motion picture, and companioning games. Clockwork Knight is the winner in comparison to the Toy Story games, in my opinion, and is certainly a showpiece to look at.
My complaints with Clockwork Knight revolve essentially around three things. One, it would have been nice for Pepperouchau to have even more possible behaviors, two, it would have been nice to have a save or password considering the length and difficulty, and three, slightly smoother control would have been a desirable tweak.
Overall, I recommend Clockwork Knight for fans of the genre, and I recommend the sequel even more, both are beautiful and impressive platform games, my complaints aside. Well worth it.
Jennifer Diane Reitz is a Game Designer and Computer Artist, and one of the founders of Happy Puppy. She is the creator of numerous games and software products, including Boppin' , Shark Chums, Elsewhere, and many others. She has worked for such companies as Activision, Sculptured Software, Epyx, SRI, and Electronic Arts, and founded Accursed Toys. She has been active in the computer gaming industry since it's earliest days. She considers games to be works of artistic merit and achievement, and views computer entertainment as the most important media of our era.