Fatal Frame III: The Tormented Reemerges Today on PSN

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Fatal Frame III: The Tormented Reemerges Today on PSN

Before work began on Fatal Frame III, I heard that PS3 would be launching soon, so I conceived this project as a compilation of the past games, and our final game for PS2.

The first Fatal Frame used the Japanese horror technique of relying on the user’s imagination to create a sense of fear, while the second placed the emphasis on storytelling. For the third, we went with “fear lurking within the everyday” as the theme. In horror movies and such, the bedroom or bathroom are often where scary things happen, so we decided to try our hand and venture into these classic realms as well.

Fatal Frame III Art, 01

Yet, leaving it at “scary things in realistic places” would lack beauty, which is essential for any horror game. We needed more.

What I came up with was this: an old Japanese house within a dream, a house in the real world, and a player that travels between the two. In the Japanese house surrounded by thickly falling snow are the remnants of a mysterious ceremony, and the spirit of a girl covered with painful-looking tattoos can be found wandering around. Interacting with her causes the dream world to corrupt the real world.

For inspiration, I looked to my own dreams and supernatural experiences. In my dreams, I often visit a Japanese-style house like the one in the series. The Fatal Frame world takes its inspiration from my terrifying nightmares. Of course, everyone has really scary nightmares every now and then, but most people usually forget them once they wake up. But I remember mine in great detail.

For example, take this dream I had one night. I’m at the Japanese house, and the sound of chanting can be heard from the darkness. People in funeral attire whisk past me down a hall, their faces hidden behind the cloth, their eyes never meeting. When I give in to my curiosity and peer through the openings in the cloth at one of the faces, I realize it’s someone I know. Someone I know to be dead. I follow him down the hall until we reach the site of a funeral.

My funeral. The moment I realize this, every one of the attendants turns toward me.

In this dream, what happens next is usually what I’m dreading the most, probably because I’m telling myself, “This is the last thing I want to happen,” and my brain takes its cue from that. In this series, we try to adhere faithfully to this literal “nightmare scenario.”

The world of Fatal Frame III is full of these kind of dreams and supernatural experiences of mine. But to go into detail here would spoil the game, so you’ll have to play and see for yourself. Instead, I’ll talk about an encounter I once had with a ghost.

Fatal Frame III Art, 03Fatal Frame III Art, 04

The system in Fatal Frame III that lets you see pictures in the real world that were taken in the dream world comes from a game I used to play with my friends when I was a child.

In our neighborhood there was a run-down, abandoned, Japanese-style house. Each of us would enter one at a time and bring back something from inside, which we would then make up a story about and show off to our friends.

One time, it was my turn. Thinking of getting it over with as soon as possible, I hurried to the back room and picked up a baby doll. It was the kind that speaks when a string on its back is pulled. When I tried pulling the string, the voice was distorted and broken. It was impossible to tell what it was saying.

Just then, I heard the sound of grating metal. It come closer and closer until it reached the room I was in. It was an old woman pushing a broken stroller. I threw the doll to give it back to her and sped out of the house as fast as I could.

Looking back, it hardly makes sense that someone would be pushing a stroller through an abandoned house with broken floorboards that no one had lived in for years. I don’t think that lady was from the real world.

Fatal Frame III Art, 02

I never did tell my friends about the old woman, but she appears in the game as a hostile spirit.

Visiting the Japanese house in my nightmares each night, and sometimes seeing spirits during the day. To put this daily cycle of mine — this innermost aspect of myself — into a game creates a huge and inescapable problem: to complete it, I must venture into that deepest room in the house of my dreams, to that same spot where I’m always pulled to, and see what awaits me there.

I know that to create a horror game is to play a game of chicken with suicide. After losing someone close to me, and chasing him deeper and deeper into the house in a dream where I had become Rei Kurosawa, there was a point where I wasn’t sure I could win.

Relentless rain. Snow falling ceaselessly at the house. Water falls to the ground and mingles with the earth, before running off, just as I run my course to the depths of my dream. Now that I think about it, the story should probably end with me unable to return from that world to reality. Running water never returns.

Yet, I was able to come back. There was only one time during that dream when the worst case scenario didn’t happen, and I can’t stop thinking about what it could mean. This experience is featured as the ending of Fatal Frame III. For me, this is what makes the game both frightening and meaningful.


To experience Fatal Frame III for yourself, visit PlayStation.com.

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  • So this is what they were teasing on the blogcast. Missed out on this one when it was released originally so excited to try it out now.

  • Good work

  • I LOVE Fatal Frame games!
    I would love to see them return to PS or to be multiplatfom. Such a shame Nintendo co-own the series now and they only released them in Asia or in Europe and Asia as the remake of the second game :(

    I found FF3 for PS2 new some months ago, immediately bought it, and i’m buying this for PSN, i love this games! :D

  • It’s already up on the store, just waiting for nightfall to get into it.

  • i’d rather preffer a HD edition of this amazing games, but at least we can have Fatal Frame on PS3

  • I haven’t played any of the Fatal Frame games. Are they just as good as Silent Hill?

  • I always appreciate more PS2 classics. That system had the best line up of games in console history. I really hope that Sony is able to bring back more of the legacy titles with Gaikai and the PS4. The PS2 classics list really ought to be at least several hundred games deep.

  • Oh yea. It’s more than good. Can’t wait to come home from work to download this. Just got done finishing both games of Siren from the PS2 and the remake. I wish more games came out like this. Give into a Fatal Frame 4 collectors edition. Have like the original camera and orbs that actual has a flash and takes pics. That would be a nice collectors edition.

  • Too bad it’s just a classic. Some trophies support attract me more to buy.

  • Maybe this is a opportunity for finally playing a Fatal Frame game

  • @6, if you want HD versions just play them on the PCSX2 emulator on your PC. It was incredibly stupid of Sony to not have any form of hardware and/or software based up-scaling and anti-aliasing for PS2 games on the PS3. Probably doesn’t have any on the PS4 either. Sorry Sony, but no thanks. I’ll stick to buying the games cheap from ebay & Craigslist & play them on PCSX2.

  • This saga needs a HD Collection, it will be great.

  • The games actually still hold up pretty well graphically, don’t really need HD.

  • Should of been done as a HD remaster collection with parts 1, 2, 3 and trophies all included.

    A missed opportunity for a great series to be revived for ps3 :(

  • @ 7 Gamerzlimited

    Much better than silent hill and far more scary because its far more believable. Random mutant monsters are easily forgotten at bedtime, but ghosts, spirits and demons?

    Terrifying because they are real.

  • I want Fatal Frame V for PS3/PS4/Vita. Make it happen Tecmo ^^

  • @16

    “but ghosts, spirits, and demons? Terrifying because they are real.”

    Get out.

  • Please, fatal frame for ps4!!! I missed it on ps3… Best horror game

  • I will buy this to show my support for a great game and in the fervent hope that, and as a previous poster stated, release 1, 2, and 3 for PS4 with TROPHY support. Doesn’t even need HD or any fancy business.

    Just. Add. Trophies.


  • Wow, I will buy it right now.
    Please next games: Clock Tower 3, Kuon, Rule Of Rose, Haunted Ground.

  • Finally it’s been brought to PSN My PS2 looks terrible on HD and I don’t have an upscaler. Digital DL problem solved

  • I played Fatal Frame I and II, but never got around to III. Seems like I’ll have an opportunity now. :)

  • I love this game thank you Sony.

  • I too have never played the 3rd one until it was re-released on PSN. THANK U TECMO! Can u bring FF 4 and FF2 Remake to Wii in NA. Also i have an idea for Dead or Alive. Since u did a Warriors Orochi crossover with cosplay outfits for some of the characters in Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate. I was thinking if Kasumi could dress up as Miku from FF1 and 3? Just an idea that’s all. :)

  • also u were mentioning nightmares. I too have had very scary dreams about fighting ghosts with a camera ever since i played Fatal Frame 1 many years ago.

  • I know a lot of people said that the “real world” took you out of the experience and horror from the dream world. They said it disconnects you from the experience. But, to me, I thought it was brilliant. Every time I “woke up”, I actually felt relief as if having been dreaming a real nightmare (especially since I play these games alone in the dark with the volume turned up). It is a small touch that really authenticates the theme. That relief and subsequent feeling of security that follows didn’t quite do it for most other people, and I can understand that, but I really enjoyed it. I loved exploring the house, too!

    I really hope the Fatal Frame series sees a return to a Sony platform soon. It was a huge bummer knowing that we would never get Fatal Frame IV or even the Fatal Frame II remake. I love the series.

  • Mr. Shibata, I see you have excellent gift for telling spooky stories. The introduction to Fatal Frame 3 in this article has just increased my interest in this game manifold. I haven’t played this one before but only heard great things about the complete series. Just get the series back to Playstation where it belongs.

    And Fatal Frame 5 needs to be back to Playstation. If that’s impossible, then atleast ensure the NA release of all Nintendo system Fatal Frame games.

  • Loved the Fatal Frame series. I would love for Parasite Eve 1 & 2 to be released in HD. Both were great games!

  • Just plain awesome, if they were to bring Fatal Frame 4 as well before Halloween, that would be perfect.

  • is this only for US PSN?

  • @21

    It’s been a while since I noticed someone else know of Kuon. Good I’m not alone, lol

  • wow I was waiting you to release the whole series, I guess now is the right time to buy it all. Thanks :D

  • I finally finished my entire collection on ps3. I’m still have hope that fatal frame 2 wii edition and ”the mask of lunar eclipse” be released to ps3, it would be awesome. The hope is the last will die.

  • I’m a big fan of all Fatal Frame games! Not many games can scare me the way this game does. I love them!!!!! Oh pleeeeeeease make new ones!!!! I’m dying to play more. You don’t really see games as scary as these anymore!

  • Yo Sony, add remote play support for PS2 Classics. At least. That’d be super handy, and would make me buy more of ’em.

  • @elvick_ Agreed. In fact, i do prefeer download the game for the memory card.

  • @ 15 MP_is_for_Chumps – Hey my friend….its been a while since I saw you here and also online,how are you?….I agree 100% with you…an HD collection would be so welcome.Thats a big missed opportunity.

    But I’ll get this one….this was the only game able to get some scares out of me…..the tension in this game is sky high….shame its not HD but I’ll love to replay this on my PS3 since I lost my PS2 disc.

  • Thanks so much Sony and Tecmo. I was hoping for you guys to release the full PS2 FF trilogy and you delivered!
    And the third one is by far my favoite :D

    I couldn’t agree more with you. We need Kuon, Haunting Ground and Rule of Rose ASAP.

  • i want this on EU PSN?

  • One of the most terrifying games I have played. Such a shame the Sequels is exclusive to Nintendo consoles.

  • KOEI, please localize Sengoku Musou 4.

  • man… a new Fatal Frame on a next gen platform such as the PS4 would be terrifyingly awesome.
    Would really love to see an HD release of the originals as well, just like everyone else.

  • I don’t see it in store!

  • I meant I don’t see it in playstation store yet!

  • Hey UK guy here, any news on weather any of these fatal frames (aka project zero) will be released on the EU psn? I loved these games to bits and would really like to see some Europe love. They didn’t even release part 4 over here even though that was on another console.

  • Fatal Frame is one of my favorite horror games ever!!!

    would like to get FF4 sometime on PSN please!

  • You can get the Japanese version for the Wii… there’s a patch for English sub titles. Thats what I did, the games is AMAZING!

  • Did anyone play part one from PSN? I want to know if there’s a bunch of glitches.

  • @49
    >No glitches on either the first or the second game (FF2 was fixed a couple of months ago). Haven’t got the chance to download the third.

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