The Japanese horror series Fatal Frame (Project Zero in Europe) by Koei Tecmo is one of the best scary games ever. However, like Sony’s competing Siren, the brand has been very inactive in recent years. The last time fans had hopes of a sequel or at least a remaster or remake in April this year, when one of the main co-authors and saga producer Keisuke Kikuchi said in an interview with Nintendo Everything magazine that he never gave up on the idea of a sequel, but mainly Nintendo. Now there is another indication that Fatal Frame may return.
A hot candidate to celebrate the brand’s 20th anniversary may be a port / remaster of the latest part of Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water from 2014.
In the current issue of the prestigious Japanese magazine Famitsu, Keisuke Kikuchi reminded that the Fatal Frame series will celebrate its 20th birthday next year. The first episode was released in December 2001 on PlayStation 2 and later also on Xbox. “I would like to celebrate in some way, if possible,” Kikuchi suggested, adding that Koei Tecmo will announce some new games in the spring. According to him, he is developing a number of different titles, although he did not say explicitly that one of them is the famous horror. It’s not much, but at the same time it is not surprising that the rock fans, among whom I count, are catching every straw.
The question directly arises as to what Koei Tecmo might be preparing. Naturally, we would most like a full-fledged sequel, or at least a comprehensive remake of an older game. A hot candidate to celebrate the brand’s 20th anniversary, however, can also be a port / remaster of the last episode. Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water from 2014 is one of the last big exclusive games for Wii U, which is not yet available on Switch. Fans have been calling for it since the launch of the new console. Personally, I’m convinced that this is a significantly better horror than the average marks from the reviews suggest, although for some it may be too old-fashioned or even archaic. So I wouldn’t even defend myself against the port, although I would also prefer something more ambitious.
Wishes from the father of thought, you say? Maybe, but there’s really something going on around the Fatal Frame brand. And various clues indicate her possible comeback and willingness to please fans on the occasion of the anniversary. But let’s go back to the beginning. In the interview with Nintendo Everything magazine, Keisuke Kikuchi recalled the important fact that from the fourth part (Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse) the series was created in collaboration with Nintendo, which funds its development, and therefore appears only on the consoles of this producer.
Kikuchi explained that the series is being released by Nintento and that he is in charge of “only” the development. “So even if I say I want to make another game, it doesn’t automatically mean it will happen,” he said. There was also talk of potential remasters of older parts for Switch, not all of which came out in the West. For example, Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse for Wii from 2008 was officially released only in Japan and only in time did it receive a translation from fans. Kikuchi also said that it would be logical for the games to accompany the upcoming Hollywood adaptation, which we first wrote about in February this year.
Fatal Frame is not aimed at the silver screen for the first time
The Fatal Frame series has already received one film adaptation. The Japanese film premiered in 2014, but did not achieve the fame of a video game or other filmed horror games. The Hollywood adaptation was even announced in 2003 in a DreamWorks studio production. The famous Steven Spielberg was even supposed to help with the script (not write it!).
French director and screenwriter Christophe Gans brought a film adaptation of Konami’s famous horror series Silent Hill to cinemas in 2006 and is now working on its sequel, as well as a film based on Fatal Frame, which in itself is another piece of the puzzle. In an interview with AlloCiné magazine at the beginning of the year, he promised that his Fatal Frame would take place in Japan, and the director did not want to uproot him from his original environment, following the example of some American horror remakes, which is, of course, commendable.
As we wrote before, Kikuchi said that playing Fatal Frame on the Switch in handheld mode would definitely be fun thanks to the ability to look around freely. The Maiden of Black Water for the Wii U has already been built on this mechanism. The specific gamepad of the console with the screen acted as a viewfinder for the Camera Obscura device, with the help of which you face ghosts in series. Therefore, it would be very easy to imagine a port for Switch.
What is that Fatal Frame
The horror saga Fatal Frame was born in 2001 on PS2. It is backed by Tecmo and Koei Tecmo, respectively, but over the years Nintendo or the Japanese studio Grasshopper Manufacture (No More Heroes, Shadows of the Damned, Lollipop Chainsaw, Killer Is Dead) have also been involved. The series has five main episodes, but also saw a spin-off of Spirit Camera: The Cursed Memoir for 3DS. He “fights” with local supernatural forces and ghosts with the help of a special “Camera” Camera Obscura. The main heroines are women, the saga is inspired by Japanese folklore and legends, but despite its considerable popularity with sales, the brand cannot even remotely equal Silent Hill or Resident Evil. Nevertheless, in addition to the film adaptation of Fatal Frame, he also received his own comics.