Spirit Camera: The Cursed Memoir

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Spirit Camera: The Cursed Memoir
心霊カメラ ~憑いてる手帳~ / 零 ~紫の日記~
Shinrei Camera ~Tsuiteru Techou~ / Zero ~Murasaki no Nikki~
Spirit Camera: The Cursed Memoir
Developer(s): Tecmo-Koei, Nintendo
Publisher(s): Nintendo [1]
Distributor(s): N/A
Release date: 12 January 2012 (JA)
13 April 2012 (US)[2]
29 June 2012 (EU)
Genre: Survival Horror, adventure
Game modes: Story Mode, Ghost Camera, Horror Notebook
Ratings: CERO: B (12+)
ESRB: Teen
PEGI: 16+
Regions: Japan, North America, Europe
Platform(s): 3DS

Spirit Camera: The Cursed Memoir is a spinoff of the Fatal Frame Series for the Nintendo 3DS, which utilises AR technology.

In this game, the player serves as the game's protagonist, and the game is played from a first-person perspective. The game uses a single save slot and is a single-player. It retails at 3,800 yen in Japan, and is available in North America for $35(USD)/$40(CAD).


Zero: Purple Diary / Zero ~Murasaki no Nikki~ (零 ~紫の日記~)

One day, the diary suddenly arrived.
"The Purple Diary"
It's an old diary that has been whispered about in urban legends for as long as anyone can remember.

On the first page of the diary, eerie photographs and cryptic words...
Those who see the words that shouldn't be there, suddenly appearing on the page that was blank only a second before...

They're spirited away, and eventually found with a completely different appearance.

A corpse, with its face cut up...

--From the official site

Release dates

  • Japan - 12 January 2012
  • US - 13 April 2012
  • Europe - 29 June 2012


The game has three modes: Story, Spirit Camera and Cursed Pages.

Fatal Frame: The Purple Diary

A story about a cursed book called the Purple Diary. Can you find a way to escape the diary's sinister curse?

  • Story Mode (Purple Diary)
The main story mode, during which the plot progresses. The player finds the Purple Diary and allows Maya to escape from it. In this mode, the player must use the 3DS camera, serving as the Camera Obscura, to find hints within the diary and battle ghosts in the real world environment around them. Clearing Story Mode takes roughly two to three hours and unlocks an outfit for Maya, Story Mode (Extra), and Battle mode.
  • Story Mode (Extra)
Unlocked after completing Story Mode for the first time, this is a more difficult version of story mode, in which you can obtain extra game notes. The messages in the Purple Diary at the beginning and end of the story are slightly different.
  • Scene Selection
Allows you to select and play a scene from Story Mode. More scenes will become available as you progress through the story.
  • Photo Ops & Battles
Photograph characters from Story Mode, or battle against them. View photos with the Nintendo 3DS Camera application. Win battles to unlock new outfits and difficulty levels.
Spirit Camera

A collection of games that feature the Nintendo 3DS system's cameras. (Unlocked after completing the masked boy's mask game during the "Eyes Peeping From the Mask" chapter.)

  • Spirit Photography
Take pictures at your leisure with the Spirit Camera. Keep in mind, however, that it has the ability to capture the supernatural...
  • Spirit Check
Use the Spirit Camera to reveal the spirits haunting you and the people around you. These spirits change their hosts daily, so the ones you find today might be different tomorrow.
  • Spirit Challenge
Photograph someone's face with the Spirit Camera, and the spirit lurking inside will attack! Use the camera to dispel the spirit.
Cursed Pages

A collection of games that feature the Nintendo 3DS system's outer cameras and the accompanying AR Book.

  • Four Strange Masks
Four strange masks are haunted by a boy's spirit. Use the camera to answer the questions coming from within the masks and dispel the boy's spirit.
  • The Haunted Doll
You are haunted by a doll's spirit. Using your memory, identify the correct doll and use the camera to dispel the spirit.
  • The Boy in the Book
A boy who lurks in the AR Book has invited you to play a game of hide-and-seek. Use the camera to figure out where he's hiding.
  • Spirit House
A world beyond reality exists inside the AR Book. Photograph the supernatural entities that dwell within its pages, and dispel them.

Main Characters

Maya (眞夜) - A girl you, the player, have brought out into the real world. The player must work with Maya to solve the diary's curse, and regain Maya's lost memories.

Kaito Hasebe - This man was investigating the diary, and eventually became cursed by and trapped within it.

Old Woman (老婆) - A mysterious old lady who appears to those who become involved with the diary. The magic words she chants seem to have something to do with the diary's hidden secrets. People who hear her chanting can never escape from the diary.

Akira / Koji (仮面の少年) - The Masked Boy. A boy who was spirited away after once becoming trapped in the diary. He appears before those investigating the diary, inviting them to play. Those who lose the game are spirited away, just like him.

Woman in Black (黒い服の女) - The antagonist of the game. Her words appear on the first page of the diary, and she lures people inside and imprisons them there.

Manipulated Woman (操られた女) - Another victim of the Purple Diary. She has taken the form of a human-sized doll.


Spirit Camera is not divided into numbered chapters during gameplay, although there are different sections. The titles below come from the "Scene Selection" menu you unlock as you play through the story mode, and do not overlap perfectly with full sections.

  • The Cursed Diary
The purple diary -- a book spoken of in urban legend -- came into your possession. With the Camera Obscura, you looked at the diary's first page, the blank page.
  • The Vanished Man
You escaped the hallucinations of the purple diary. While speaking to Maya, a girl trapped in the diary, an eerie voice filled the air. The voice seemed to come from a photo of a man in the diary.
  • The Blocking Hands
A man trapped by the curse disappeared into the diary once again. To learn more about the diary's secrets, you decided to follow him.
  • The Prisoner
You fended off the white hands that were blocking the door. Behind that door within the diary are the man imprisoned by the curse and the woman in black.
  • Hide-and-Seek
While investigating the diary's curse, your eyes stop at an old photo of a young boy.
  • Hidden Words
An old diary left behind by the boy. Seemingly cryptic words are written inside.
  • Peek-a-Boo
You found photos of four masks on a page of the diary. Looking at them with the Camera Obscura, you notice four dark sets of eyes staring back at you.
  • Crumpled Picture
An old picture left in the diary looks like it was drawn by a child. It has something on it that's hard to discern, like it was crumpled up in a strange way. The voice of the boy whose face was taken can be heard coming from the picture.
  • Girl Afraid of the Dark
There might be others inside the diary - people whose faces haven't yet been taken. While looking at other pages in the diary, Maya's eyes stop at the picture of an old doll. There's something familiar about it.
  • Mysterious Score
A mysterious song drifts from the diary. Maya thinks she's heard it before. The melancholy song turns out to be coming from the piece of sheet music within the diary.
  • Beyond the Screen
You solved the riddle of the sheet music and then saw the silhouette of a young girl, alone and terrified in the darkness. The girl could be Maya's family. You search the diary for a way to save her.
  • Ancient Rite
The old records in the diary are opening the doors of Maya's memory. They're all connected in some way to an ancient rite.
  • The Last Door
Maya discovered the true identity of the woman in black and figured out the cause of the curse. Now she's disappeared into the diary. You follow her, searching for the last hidden door.

Regional Differences

  • The title of Story Mode is Fatal Frame: The Diary of Faces in the US version, and Project Zero: The Purple Diary in the European version.
  • The stockings and shorts in Maya's unlockable Gothic Lolita Costume are changed to leggings in the North American and European releases of the game.
  • In the European version there is an option to switch from English to Japanese audio, which is not available in the North American version.
  • In the North American version models of Mio and Mayu as they appear in Fatal Frame: Deep Crimson Butterfly were removed.
  • In the North American version, Akira's name has been changed to Koji. In the European version, his name is Akira Hanabusa.
  • In the North American and European versions, Maya's age has been changed from 15 to 18.
  • In both Japanese and European releases of the game the player can see eyes peeking through the game box, in reference to a Japanese ghost called Mokumokuren. This extra is absent in the North American release.

Box Art

Supplementary Material

Misc. Info

  • The main staff who work on the main Zero series were in charge of its development, though Makoto Shibata took on a "supervisory" role rather than his usual role as director.[3]
  • The game was originally titled "Dr. Asou's Spirit Camera" (麻生博士の心霊カメラ, Asou Hakase no Shinrei Camera) by Keisuke Kikuchi, since he has been mentioned in every other game in the series, but so many people didn't know who he was that the idea was quickly dropped. Another suggestion was "AR Horror Games".[4]
  • One of the promotional movies added to the official website was a mini-drama about three girls, Rina, Saki, and Kaori, who play the game and become cursed by it.
  • The game's music was composed by Ayako Toyoda.
  • This game was released in America on Friday the 13th, a day known for superstition.
  • The game sold 0.25m units globally.[5]

Official Links


  1. Fatal Frame Team Reveals Spirit Camera (August 31st, 2011). "Fatal Frame Team Reveals Shinrei Camera"
  2. Nintendo official website
  3. http://www.gpara.com/article/cms_show.php?c_id=28504&c_num=14
  4. Interview with Satoru Iwata (Japanese)
  5. Spirit Camera: The Cursed Memoir, VGChartz, retrieved October 22 2022.
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

Major Characters/Ghosts
Maya - Kaito Hasebe - Woman in Black
Minor Characters/Ghosts
Seamstress - Akira - Shiori Hasebe - White Hand
Camera Obscura - Spirited Aways - Tokoyomi Ritual - Vessel
Old House - The Village
Camera Obscura - Purple Diary - Voices of the Dead
More Pages
Items - Notes - Costumes - Mini Drama - Japanese Mini Drama - Another Story