For my second gaming journal, I decided to play Twelve Minutes. I’ve always found the concept of time travel and time loops fascinating, so I knew I wanted to play it.
The game follows a man and his wife who live in an apartment. One night, a cop knocks on the door and after a series of events, the main character is killed. Except instead of dying, he relives the day over and over.
The first thing I noticed about the game was the opening sequence. Calming music played to the image of a clock and opening credits. The letters of “Twelve Minutes” slowly disappeared until it left the word “Mine” which immediately made me theorize about what that could mean. I’m assuming it has to do with the cop wanting the watch or even how in toxic relationships people will refer to their partners as “mine” and be overly possessive.
I’m playing on my laptop so it was a little more difficult to navigate the game without a mouse. However, once I realized all I had to do was click I figured it wouldn’t be that bad. It’s also easier than playing Edith Finch on my phone.
I like the graphics of the game. They’re not overly cartoonish like some games. Nor are they hyper-realistic in an uncanny valley sense. I also think it’s an interesting choice by the game designers to have the viewpoint be an overhead shot of the apartment instead of a direct viewpoint.
The first thing I decided to do when I unlocked the front door was learn the layout of the apartment. I went to the closet on the left and picked up a phone. I didn’t even know if it was mine, I just thought I might need it.
I then went into the bedroom and stupidly laid on the bed. I couldn’t get off the bed so time passed and then the “cop” entered. I experienced my first death and it was interesting to me because there was no flash of light, or rewinding sequence, or something spectacular. The main character was simply standing at the front door.
I finished exploring the apartment, this time going to the bathroom and kitchen, and picked up different items. I noticed that the inventory resets after death, which makes sense but I feel like later I’ll be stressed out about remembering which items to pick up. Since I’m so early in the game, I don’t know what exactly to pick up to “win.”
While I looked around I noticed a painting next to the fridge. It looked like morse code to me, but maybe that’s just me viewing every single detail as a clue haha.
While on the floor, I picked up the knife to cut myself free and immediately died. I then picked up different items just to see their uses and asked the wife about how her father died. She claimed it was a heart attack and then I asked her about the watch. She insisted she didn’t know anything about a pocket watch.
During this life I also locked the door and asked the wife to not open it, thinking that might bring a slight change to how things would happen. The cop just kicked the door open so no luck there. I ran at him with a knife before he could tie me up and I promptly died.
I decided three deaths was enough for my first play-through. So far I find this game really interesting and fun. I love the concept of only being in the small apartment and the time loop or rebirth happening no matter what. I’m interested to see if I can find the pocket watch in the apartment and which items I’m supposed to pick up. I’m sure a few are red herrings or have an exact purpose. I’m also curious to see how to get the truth out of the wife and stop the cop.