Fatal Frame shuttered in US, EU

Tecmo confirms that Nintendo has declined to publish Grasshopper-developed horror game outside Japan.

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The success of Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition and House of the Dead: Overkill have shown that there's a place for horror games on Nintendo's latest system. Unfortunately, Nintendo is apparently unconvinced of that, given that Tecmo has confirmed to GameSpot that Nintendo has declined to publish the Wii installment of its survival horror franchise Fatal Frame in North America and Europe.

Fatal Frame is nothing if not spooky.
Fatal Frame is nothing if not spooky.

"Nintendo holds the publishing rights to Fatal Frame Wii, which was developed by Tecmo LTD. and Grasshopper Manufacture and released in Japan on July 31, 2008," Tecmo said in a statement. "Nintendo of America has since then decided not to publish the title in North America--consequently, the title will not be released in this territory. As the owner of the IP, Tecmo feels very unfortunate that the fans of the series in North America will not have a chance to play the game, but respects the final decision made by Nintendo of America."

As with previous Fatal Frame games, the Wii edition drops players into ghost-infested environments with a magic camera as their only defense. Players can damage the threatening phantoms by taking pictures of them. The longer a spectre is held in the frame before the picture is snapped, the more damage it does, and a limited amount of special film serves as "ammunition" for the game.

As of press time, Nintendo had not returned a request for comment on the decision not to publish Fatal Frame Wii in the West, or whether it would consider selling the rights to another company.

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