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I came up with the idea for these articles this week in a bit of a panic. When I got sick a few weeks ago and then slogged through the madness of Homecoming while still a bit under the weather, I realized that I neglected the page for two weeks. While not unusual for us around here, at least for the last year I made this page a priority. So, for Spooktober, a collection of articles about the old horror games I used to play. Therefore, I present my case for Fatal Frame.
As what, exactly? Well, let me answer that question with some more exposition. I wrote in my last article that Fatal Frame ranks as my favorite horror game ever made. So, maybe I just write one of my patented articles where I try to convince you that you need to like the game as much as I do. Because, honestly, what else makes sense at this point?
This Game is Scary
I told a story about how I played Silent Hill in surround sound and ambient sounds in the game creeped me out. Resident Evil made me jump more than once. But, only this game kept me on the edge of my seat through the entire game.
So, wait, let me get this right. Psychological massacre horror? One moment of scary? Zombies, a deep rooted fear from childhood? A couple of jump scares? But, a game about a camera that captures the souls of ghosts with a slightly punny title? That one gets your vote as truly scary.
Just sitting here and thinking about it. The creepy little ghost kids still give me chills.
The Game is Pretty
Those who come to the page often know that I don’t care much about graphics. I feel compelled (for some reason) to clarify that statement. It depends on the game. Mario? I want the stylized graphics of my youth. A world and story built on atmospheric horror? Give me the goods. This game came out on the PS2, which offered greater graphical capabilities than the PS1 and it showed. Sure, they smartly hid some of the limitations behind darkness and mist. But, even so, the ghosts came through enough to make them legitimately scary.
The Story is Solid
Granted, I don’t remember the entire story. But, I remember the relevant parts. You are tasked with releasing the souls of ghosts using a camera. I know. It sounds silly. And, I admit that when I first heard about the game I thought it might be a joke game. But, the game is no joke. I wanted to keep playing to understand more about these people I met in the afterlife. And the main story provided enough intrigue and suspense that I cared what happened and worked actively to undo the damage.
All of these years later, I haven’t played a horror game that affected me as much as Fatal Frame did. A student asked me again what my favorite video game was and I replied, without hesitation, “Portal 2.” Fatal Frame does much of what Portal 2 did right. It might just be in my top 5 games.