Tecmo Discusses Nintendo's Cancellation of Fatal Frame 4 Wii

By Adam Riley 03.06.2009 21

Tecmo Discusses Nintendo

Whilst it looked like Nintendo was set to bring Tecmo's horror-fest Fatal Frame 4 on Wii to Europe, the game was recently confirmed as being cancelled, despite being initially lined up for a May 2009 release. Now Tecmo has given Cubed3 its informal response on the situation.

Zero Tsukihami no Kamen, as it is known in Japan, was co-developed by Goichi Suda-san's Grasshopper Manufacture (No More Heroes, as well as Flower, Sun and Rain) and the team that previously made Project Zero 1-3 on the PS2/Xbox (known as Fatal Frame in the US). In Japan Nintendo published the fourth entry on 31st July, 2008 and so far it has sold nearly 75,000 units as of the end of December 2008, which may seem a small amount compared to other high profile games, but in actual fact makes this version, the first on a Nintendo system, the most successful, highest selling in the series so far.

For those that do not know the background of what was to be called Fatal Frame IV: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse in the US, below is the overall synopsis:

"10 years prior to the events of the game, five young girls were captured and held hostage by a criminal in a mysterious house on Rougetsu Island. They were eventually rescued by Choushiro Kirishima, a detective pursuing the criminal. Several years after the incident, two of the girls (Marie Shinomiya and Tomoe Nanamura) died mysteriously. The three remaining girls, Misaki Asou, Ruka Minazuki, and Madoka Tsukimori, now 17 years old, return to the island to recover their lost memories and find out more of what happened that day. Choushiro follows the girls at the request of Ruka's mother, Sayaka Minazuki."

Sadly Nintendo of America denied the game a release in the US market early last month, leaving the only hope being the European market. An advert from a French magazine revealed the game was indeed on its way to Europe, but it was quickly retracted and now Nintendo has said the game was on its way, but has been cancelled.

Therefore, as Cubed3 has a good relationship with Tecmo's Japanese office, being told before anyone else that Nintendo was bringing the game to Europe, a response to the cancellation was received this morning:

"It is regrettable that Nintendo has decided to not publish 'Project Zero' for Wii at this time. But the only thing we can do is respect the company's decision no matter what reason they have.

"However, we have once more realised that there are many fans anticipating our 'Project Zero' franchise and are very proud and pleased to find out this fact. What we at Tecmo can do from this point forward is keep this project for the future and devote ourselves to launching the next version that will live up to those expectations. We will definitely officially announce this when the time is right."

As for whether another publisher, such as XSEED Games for the US or Rising Star Games for Europe, could step in and take the reins now that Nintendo has refused to release the game, sadly there is no good news. Simply put, Tecmo's representative said "No. Nobody will publish this title in any territory."

He reiterated his thanks, on behalf of Tecmo as a whole, for the compliments and support fans have shown the Fatal Frame / Project Zero series, ending with "I thank you so much."

All hope for an eventual English-language version has not been lost, though, since fans have united to work on a completely legal translation patch that can be used with official copies of the game. Currently it has quickly jumped to the 60% translated marker and will hopefully be completed in the next few months.

Are you disappointed that Project Zero 4 is not coming to Europe or the US? Share your thoughts below...

Box art for Project Zero: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse
Also known as

Fatal Frame IV: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse


Grasshopper Manufacture







C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  10/10 (8 Votes)

European release date None   North America release date None   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date None   

Comment on this article

You can comment as a guest or join the Cubed3 community below: Sign Up for Free Account Login

Preview PostPreview Post Your Name:
Validate your comment
  Enter the letters in the image to validate your comment.
Submit Post


Such a shame this game won't be coming over here. I'm really surprised Nintendo and Tecmo are working together again so closely with the new Metroid game after this.

( Edited 18.04.2013 05:38 by Guest )

It's a shame that he said nobody can publish it. However, I believe that to be slightly inaccurate in the fact that Nintendo can strike a deal with a Third Party publisher if it so desires...but presumably said publisher would have to foot the bill for whatever changes need to be made in the game.

I'm tinkering with the Japanese version at the moment and bloody hell it's scary. Really well-made game, despite people grumbling about 'game-breaking bugs' and 'awful controls'. I've come across neither so far...

( Edited 18.04.2013 05:38 by Guest )

Adam Riley [ Director :: Cubed3 ]

UNITE714: Weekly Prayers | Bible Verses

I'm quite amazed that sub-75,000 unit sales is enough to pay for the series.
That must be a really tightly efficiant/small team they got there.

( Edited 18.04.2013 05:38 by Guest )

http://www.fanficmaker.com <-- Tells some truly terrible tales.
Last update; Mice,Plumbers,Animatronics and Airbenders. We also have the socials; Facebook & G+

Sure I am sure! I recently played Fatal Frame 1 (OR Project Zero, as it is called in Europe) on PS2 and was again absolutely stunned by the atmosphere. It's a creeping sensation and such a quiet and yet captivating game.
I would buy it and I wanted to do so, it was a solid part of my budget, so to speak.
I would absolutely love to get an English version, but... I am not sure if I will pay so much for a Japanese import version.

( Edited 18.04.2013 05:38 by Guest )

I find your lack of faith disturbing!

I bet later in the year you'll be able to find a cheap copy on sites like Play-Asia.com...and by that point the unofficial translation project may well be completed, so it'll be the perfect time to make the purchase Smilie

Tecmo today confirmed once more that a fifth main entry is being worked on.

Adam Riley [ Director :: Cubed3 ]

UNITE714: Weekly Prayers | Bible Verses

As to game-breaking glitches, they are there. Most glitches can be fixed with a reset, and are simply hangs during loading. One of the glitches prevents you from finishing your ghost list, ugh.

As to controls, most people who complain about the controls haven't even played the game, they just refer to the IGN review of it. IGN apparently didn't realize that you can use the Nunchuck to move...

Finally, the translation patch should be entering (closed) alpha and beta tests sometime next month. It'll be done before the end of the summer for sure. You can find our website here, and the forums with progress updates here. Feel free to send me an e-mail via our site if you have any questions that aren't answered in the FAQ or on the forum thread.

why cant fatal frame 4 game be in the U.S it looks like a great game and me and alot of my friends would love to play it it looks different from the others and any game i played and i hope you guys or girls read this and replay Smilie

Just a little pissed off. (guest) 18.10.2009#8

So many european and american fans were anxiously waiting for this game and Nintendo has denied it from us. Well people with a lot of cash can of course get a japanese Wii (Or get their Wii's modded) and import the game.

Apparently Nintendo doesn't care about the money we european and american gamers could have given them. Suckers. 8)

Hallis (guest) 13.12.2009#9

this makes me sad, i would have loved to own that game but alas i have been left high and dry

Winters (guest) 30.12.2009#10

Very disappointed that they are not going to release it since it is such a great game. I have played all 3 and was looking forward to the release. Completly lost respect Nintendo Europe and would like them to reconsider.

Epidemic (guest) 05.01.2010#11

I was hoping that a European release would have eventually led to a NA release too.

Looks like the only way to play Fatal Frame is to mod my Wii or buy an imported one.

Hopefully Silent Hill will get some decent sales and make Nintendo reconsider giving us another flashlight/camera/horror game.

VanBurenPhilips (guest) 25.01.2010#12

The English translation patch is released, and they've done a damn good job. I'm playing the game now - it is excellent, best horror game I've played in ages. Get it.

sydsnap (guest) 06.04.2010#13

I AM SO DISAPPOINTED! Why would Nintendo do something like that to such a great series? D:

blink (guest) 11.04.2010#14

i hate Nintendo for this and will no longer use there products

Mj (guest) 20.04.2010#15

i AM OUTRAGED! i was so disappointed when i found out it wasn't coming to the uk Smilie
i have all the project zero games
and i love them they are amazing !!... i think the game should have released in Europe and US because i think they have disappointed LOTS of people.Smilie
its such a shame Smilieyour text here

Tian (guest) 14.06.2010#16

I have all 3 of the previous games and have to say they are in my top 3 games series of all time, so so scary and innovative. I was going to buy a wii especially for this game but looks like Nintendo won't be getting my business anymore. There depriving so many fans and would be fans of such an epic game saga.

Robert (guest) 15.06.2010#17

It is a real shame that nintendo would not release this game here because of a few bugs.
Did they release a few game here whith a lot of bug in it cough cough pokemon anyone?
Hopefuly after Metroid Other M is release, they rethink about releasing here anytime soon.

Samurai92 (guest) 30.06.2010#18

Hmmm...didn't it say that this game was the best selling in the series so far? I know that's still not a lot of sales, but with proper advertising, or just through word of mouth, a release outside of Japan now would probably be quite successful (after all, a lot of people were dissapointed that it was never released, the anticipation would probably have lead to this game being spread through word of mouth).
It strange though...this article didn't actually give a reason for the cancellation...just simply states that Nintendo refused it. Okay, I'll sound like a noob here, but does Nintendo make a loss if this game doesn't sell too well? It's a third party developer isn't it? So only Tecmo would make a loss?

...anyway...I don't even have a Wii XD. I'm a big fan of the series though, so this doesn't look good...not that it's on Wii (I know a few people that would love this and have a Wii, could just play on theirs =D), but that this one wasn't released outside Japan...I hope this isn't a sign of what's going to happen to the series.

Ryukoken (guest) 24.09.2010#19

Nintendo start to make shit, no respect for players
its time to sell wii and buy playstation 3

katy (guest) 02.10.2011#20

not being funny but i live in the uk with a uk wii and fatal frame 4 works fine on mine Smilie after downloadsing the pach and other 3 off the web www.fatalframe4.net also downloading bootmii and hackmii good luck

james (guest) 22.04.2012#21

well i wish the game would come statesided i know i would buy it

Subscribe to this topic Subscribe to this topic

If you are a registered member and logged in, you can also subscribe to topics by email.
Sign up today for blogs, games collections, reader reviews and much more
Site Feed
Who's Online?

There are 1 members online at the moment.