Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse
|Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse|
Zero ～Tsukihami no Kamen～
Project Zero: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse
|Developer(s):||Tecmo & Grasshopper Manufacture|
|Release date:||Japan - July 31 2008|
Remaster - Early 2023
|Game modes:||Easy, Normal, Hard & Nightmare|
|Ratings:||Japan: CERO C|
Xbox Series X|S
Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse is the fourth game of the Fatal Frame Series. It was released in 2008 for the Nintendo Wii console, but for many years it remained available only in Japan. In September 2022, a remastered version was announced for release early the next year.
"If no one remembers it, does that mean it didn't happen?"
On Rougetsu Island, an island south of Honshu, a festival called the Rougetsu Kagura occurs once every decade. During the Kagura, five girls were spirited away. Although the girls were rescued by a detective, they had lost all of their memories. One of the girls, Ruka Minazuki, retained one faint memory: a single melody...
The melody repeats, gathering speed... until eventually the memory is interrupted.
"What happened on that day...?" Ruka has been thinking since.
Ten years later, of the girls who went missing two have died simultaneously, their faces covered and contorted as though screaming in pain.
Ruka and the two remaining girls, Misaki and Madoka, return to Rougetsu Island to uncover the mystery behind their friends' deaths. Her friends already on the island, Ruka follows to discover what lies within her lost memories...
- Opening description from the game manual
Remaster (Switch, etc)
- Japan, US, Europe - Early 2023
Initially, Fatal Frame for Wii was envisioned as a standalone spinoff rather than a sequel, designed mainly to make use of the Wii remote as a flashlight. As Makoto Shibata was busy with another project at the time, Tecmo approached Goichi Suda to ask whether Grasshopper would be interested in helping develop the game. Suda was initially reluctant, but with the encouragement of his wife, a horror fan, he eventually agreed, and came on board as a director.
The writing process was distributed between Shibata, who wrote Ruka's chapters, Suda, who wrote Choushiro's, and Masahiro Yuki, who wrote Misaki's, with Shibata overseeing the story as a whole. Suda's contributions were delayed by his work on No More Heroes. When he finally submitted his complete draft, Shibata found it "shockingly violent" and out of keeping with the tone of the game. In fact, he writes, "I was so outraged that I ran the printed pages of writing through the shredder. I deleted the email from Mr. Suda and expunged it thoroughly from my harddisk." After he had calmed down, however, he reconsidered Suda's vision, and reworked it to fit Fatal Frame while keeping some aspects, including the ending. Despite their different approaches, both Shibata and Suda were satisfied with the final product. Keisuke Kikuchi even mentioned that he considered Mask of the Lunar Eclipse the best game of the series yet.
For the Wii, the viewpoint was shifted from a fixed overhead camera to an over-the-shoulder viewpoint, so that players would feel as if they were exploring the environment themselves. The change in viewpoint encouraged them to create a main setting that blended Japanese and Western features, since traditional Japanese furnishings tend to be low to the ground and would be below the player's line of sight. The characters' movement speed was also adjusted to account for the new viewpoint.
The game was privately announced at 2007 Tokyo Game Show, and Tecmo publicly announced the game on January 30th, 2008 at their winter press conference. It was released on July 31st, 2008 in Japan for 6800yen.
For reasons that remain the subject of rumour and speculation, Mask of the Lunar Eclipse was never officially released outside Japan. An unofficial translation project by fans, replacing Japanese text and subtitles with English, was completed in January 2010. A Spanish fan translation was completed on August 28th, 2010, and a French fan translation on September 2nd, 2011. An English voice track for players to use instead of the original Japanese track was also in the works; however, the dub project has since disbanded and been cancelled due to creative differences.
On 13 September 2022, Nintendo announced that a remastered version of Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse will be released in early 2023, including in Western regions. The 2023 version will be available on Switch, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and Steam. It will have improved graphics, new costumes, and a Photo Mode.
Ruka Minazuki 水無月 流歌 (age: 17)
The main heroine of Fatal Frame IV. Several years ago, Ruka (a previous native of the island) and four other girls were rescued by a detective after being kidnapped as a child. Now, the remaining two girls have left for the island of Rougetsu, where it all started. In search of her lost memories, Ruka too heads out for the island.
Misaki Asou 麻生 海咲 (age: 17)
One of the surviving kidnapped girls, Misaki is a strong-willed girl who has to have her way. Led by the vision of a girl in black who appears in her memory, Misaki heads towards Rougetsu Island. However, soon after arriving at the island, Misaki, lead by her curiosity, abandons the cowardly Madoka.
Madoka Tsukimori 月森 円香 (age: 17)
One of the surviving kidnapped girls, Madoka has a timid personality. Upon Misaki's urging, Madoka follows her to Rougetsu Island. Soon after arriving at the island, Madoka begins to have second thoughts, and suddenly finds herself separated from Misaki. Madoka is the first character you play in the game.
Choushiro Kirishima 霧島 長四郎 (age: unknown)
The detective who rescued Ruka and the other girls from Rougetsu island several years ago while in the pursuit of a suspect. Now just a private eye, he travels back to the island, upon the request of Ruka's mother, to find Ruka and her friends.
- 咲き触れ / Blooming Touch ???
- 音連れ / Musical Accompaniment
- 共鳴 / Resonance
- 忘日 / Forgotten Day
- 空身 / The Empty Body
- 双面 / The Masked Pair
- 月守歌 / Tsukimori Song
- 無苦 / Without Suffering
- 朔夜 / Sakuya
- 帰来迎 / Kiraigou
- 殘桜 / Lingering Cherry Blossoms
- 月蝕 / Lunar Eclipse
- 零域 / Zero Stage
- The theme song is Zero no Chouritsu by Tsukiko Amano.
- The ending song is NOISE also by Tsukiko Amano.
- The game's official image color is yellow.
- The keywords are moon, mask, and memory.
- The theme is 'Feeling fear with your body'.
- There are three main glitches in the game, one of which will freeze gameplay.
- Unlike previous games, this game was developed by the newly created Team TACHYON, instead of the Project Zero team (now disbanded).
- This is the first Fatal Frame game for the Wii console.
- The game sold 0.08m units globally.
- Official site (Japanese)
- Official Tecmo page (Japanese)
- Creator's Voice (Japanese; English translation)
- Announcement Trailer, Koei Tecmo America, 13 September 2022.
- (April 10, 2009) Fatal Frame Shuttered in US, EU. Gamespot.com. Retrieved on 2009-06-06 from .
- Casamassina, Matt. (April 8, 2009) Fatal Frame Never Coming to America?. IGN.com. Archived by the Wayback Machine.
- (May 29, 2009) Sorry guys, Fatal Frame IV isn't coming to Europe either. GoNintendo.com. Archived by the Wayback Machine.
- (May 30, 2009) Les fantômes n'effrayeront que le Japon. LiveWii.fr. Archived by the Wayback Machine.
- Zero: Tsukihami no Kamen, Suda51 Official Complete Book Grasshopper Manufacture & Human Works, p133-135, 172-173. English translation.
- Gantayat, Anoop. (January 30, 2008). Fatal Frame Wii Revealed. IGN.com. Retrieved on 2009-03-01 from http://uk.wii.ign.com/articles/848/848539p1.html
- Fatal Frame IV: Creator's Voice, Nintendo Website. Archived by the Wayback Machine. (English translation)
- Fatal Frame IV Preview (2008, April). Games TM Magazine, 52.
- Tecmo 2008 Winter Press Conference (January 30, 2008). 零～月蝕の仮面～. Press Release. Retrieved on 2009-03-01 from http://www.tecmo.co.jp/special/conf2008win/index.html
- VG Chartz, retrieved October 21 2012.
|Fatal Frame Series|
|Fatal Frame - Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butterfly - Fatal Frame III: The Tormented |
Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse - Fatal Frame: Deep Crimson Butterfly - Spirit Camera: The Cursed Memoir
Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water