The Horror Queen has returned to once again steal Graham’s idea! On the block today, Fatal Frame aka Project Zero. A quick note, and something I only just learned. Project Zero is the title from the EU release, so for the purposes of this piece… We’re talking Project Zero. In the last year, in particular, I have hugely gotten into “retro” horror. Many nights of researching led me to so many different titles, but one that really stuck out to me was Project Zero.
So, what is Project Zero?
Project Zero is the first entry in a survival horror series from Koei Tecmo. This first game was released all the way back in 2001 for PlayStation 2. Project Zero is a whole different kind of horror experience, especially considering the other popular series at the time.
With Project Zero, we follow the story of Miku and Mafuyu Hinasaki. When Mafuyu disappears, his sister Miku sets out to find him. This leads Miku to the Himuro Mansion, the haunted home of a famous novelist. Through the use of a very special camera, Miku learns more about the history of the house and goes up against a glorious range of enemies. Each bit of progression brings more knowledge of a dark ritual and the fate that many have faced in this mansion.
Okay, but why do we need a remake?
Project Zero is an underrated masterpiece in my opinion. We have gotten a series, with the last entry coming back in 2014. Again, in the early 2000s, the first two titles in the series did get an expanded re-release. There is also a mobile game, Real Zero, based on the same premise. Real Zero services were terminated in 2011. We also got a 3DS spin-off called Spirit Camera. But none of this is the same. The first game did something so totally epic for horror. As well as giving us a gloriously well-written story, we were given a unique way to fight enemies.
Cameras have been used a lot in modern horror (Outlast), but as a weapon? Please show me something that has executed this as well as the Project Zero series. With all the advancements in technology, just imagine what a Project Zero remake would look like. I daydream about the possibilities. As it stands, even now 19 years later, Project Zero is still a TERRIFYING game. It is so well crafted in every respect that it could easily hold its own against modern horror games. Imagine that creepy house and those unsettling ghosts re-imagined with today’s engines. Modern graphics. Modern everything. Yeah, the retro charm is pretty cool. But I would love to see this game renewed, across platforms, making it difficult to sleep again.
Is that too much for a horror nerd to ask? Give me a new HD camera and let me double kill some ghosts! Let’s go play with new versions of the puzzles that made me want to tear my hair out! Seriously, I hate puzzles. But that pure satisfaction from completing them is worth every second. Let me relive this in a whole new way.
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