Fatal Frame (2001)
"Zero" (original title)

Video Game  -  Action | Horror | Mystery  -  13 December 2001 (Japan)
8.2
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 276 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 3 critic

Armed with a camera capable of fighting ghosts, a teenage girl searches a haunted house in search of her brother.

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Title: Fatal Frame (Video Game 2001)

Fatal Frame (Video Game 2001) on IMDb 8.2/10

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Cast

Cast overview:
Rumiko Varnes ...
Miku Hinasaki (voice)
Dominic Allen ...
Mafuyu Hinasaki (voice)
Bianca Allen ...
Tomoe Hirasaka (voice)
Lenne Hardt ...
Kirie (voice)
...
Junsei Takamine (voice)
Robin Suchy ...
Additional Voices (voice) (as Robin 'Loochie' Suchy)
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Storyline

Mafuyu, a young man who idolizes an author of horror novels, goes on a search for the writer and his assistants when it's reported that they disappeared while exploring an old mansion and shinto shrine in the Japanese countryside for authorial inspiration. However, Mafuyu doesn't have the chance to search for too long before he himself disappears. Miku, his younger sister, follows Mafuyu's path to the mansion in order to find him, but all she can find of him is the family's antique camera. To her dismay, she also discovers that the mansion is populated with ghosts, but her camera somehow has the power to fight them. As Miku goes further into the mansion, she slowly discovers that the mansion and shrine share a horrific past that her family may have a connection with. Frightened but determined, Miku must brave the horrors of the mansion and find her brother before she becomes the next victim. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Based on a True Story

Genres:

Action | Horror | Mystery

Certificate:

T | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

13 December 2001 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Fatal Frame  »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(PlayStation 2 version)
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The plot of the game is based on several Japanese ghost stories. One of the stories is about a mansion where several mysterious murders occurred, but they did not involve human sacrifice or secret rituals. See more »

Quotes

Blinded Maiden: My eyes... My eyes...!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Troldspejlet: Episode #30.7 (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Fatal Frame" is a phenomena in survival-horror gaming that's so frightening, I could never complete it. (Though it has flaws in an extreme difficulty and clunky controls)
9 December 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Horror. Intense, all-consuming, even painful emotions expressing fear.

Since the dawn of storytelling, horror has been a common focus and genre, designed to frighten audiences and leave them with a joyous sense of dread. Yes, many enjoy being scared of what goes bump in the night. What may be lurking behind that closed door. What may be quietly waiting underneath our bed for us to fall asleep. What that strange noise in the forest was. People love being scared by fiction, especially as fiction is often a "safe" medium that has no real chance of actually causing us physical or emotional harm.

And video games have been one of the many mediums to not only embrace horror, but tell it flawlessly almost consistently. Because in a game, YOU are the player. YOU are the character. And you are effectively putting YOURSELF on the line within the context of the narrative. This is why horror gaming is so appealing, especially as modern horror in film has become weaker and weaker, and more reliant on clichés and laziness- if a video-game is effective and well-made, and you are properly pulled into the story, you actually feel like you are in danger, since your character is in danger. And in a game, there are real consequences... your character can die, and when a horror game is truly well-made, you as a player should feel like you can die.

That's the power of a truly great survival-horror video-game. And that is most definitely the power of "Fatal Frame", a video game released by Tecmo in 2001.

"Fatal Frame" (also known as "Zero" or "Project Zero") follows Miku Hinasaki, a young woman living in 1986 Japan, whom is searching for her brother, Mafuya. Mafuya disappeared into the vast and abandoned Himuro Mansion two weeks prior, searching for his mentor, a famed author who also seemingly vanished within the house while researching material for his next novel. Miku, who has some sixth-sense much like her brother, is armed only with a mysterious camera that seems to "capture" the souls of the dead, and she must use it while navigating the mansion and learning its secrets in order to protect herself from the hordes of vengeful spirits that still linger.

The graphics are great for a 2001 release, although they haven't aged particularly well. Characters are well-designed, but come across as a little big "jagged" and "blocky." Although Himuro Mansion is brilliantly realized, featuring some of the most bizarre, eerie and atmospheric "set design" I've ever seen. And the simplistic graphics actually do help in how well it comes across on screen. The spirits and ghosts are also remarkably designed and well- presented, and many of the more atmospheric effects are great.

The sound design astonishing. The voice acting honestly isn't that good, but the sound effects work is first class and the music and atmospheric sounds are breathtaking and absolutely horrifying. You feel like someone could be sneaking up on you at any time.

The controls are where the game loses a point, since they are a bit on the loose and simplistic side, making it hard to control at times. It feels like it has the same control issues found in many early survival- horror entries, and to be honest, I almost found the controls from the original 90's "Resident Evil" to be a bit easier to master.

The game also loses a point for it's sometimes absurd difficulty. This is not an easy game. And to be honest, it's not even a challenging game. This is a hard game. At times even unfairly hard. I've known several people, who despite putting hours and hours into it, would get stuck and be unable to finish it. Even one of my best friends, who made it to the ending, just couldn't quite beat the last 15 minutes. And this game does suffer for that- it's unforgivably hard at times, and will alienate some gamers, which is a shame.

To be honest, the issue of the controls and difficulty should have brought the score down another two or three points, but this game does have something that more than makes up for those two major complaints. Something remarkable enough that I had to give this game a stronger review than I ought.

And that is the atmosphere and horror. My god, the atmosphere and horror of this game is unlike anything I've ever experienced.

This is without a doubt the scariest experience I've had in fiction in my entire life. Through books, film, television and video-gaming, "Fatal Frame" is the scariest thing I've ever witnessed. The sense of dread. The fear of walking through a door to discover whats on the other side. The fear of even turning on your flashlight so you can see where you're walking. It is incredible. You could cut the tension in the air with a knife while you play.

Its expert use of sound, its awe-inspiring visuals, its calculated use of occasional jump-scares following expanded build-ups... it's such a perfect blend of fear, eeriness and the classic old creeps. I am being honest when I say this game is so frightening, I have never been able to finish it. I am literally too scared to make it more than halfway through. And that is something to be said, as I am an enormous fan of horror gaming, film, television and writing. I have seen it all... everything from the classic haunted-house tales to the gory nature of underground extreme cinema. And nothing has scared me as much as this game has.

And for that reason, "Fatal Frame" earns a near-perfect 9 out of 10. I want to give it a 10, but the controls and difficulty issues have to be considered. But you NEED to play this game if you're a horror fan. Trust me.


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